Remember the recession of 2009? It's hard not to - the economy was shot, jobs were lost, and Canada still hasn't finished picking up the pieces.
Businesses all over the country were hit hard and it wasn't pretty. However, one company impacted by the recession got quite the financial boost from the Canadian government. Or, should I say Canadian taxpayers?
Disgusted! Did you use my money to bail out the company? Can I do the same for taxes I owe?— Michael Scott (@6foot5Communist) October 22, 2018
In a report by CBC, it was revealed today that the Liberal government wrote off a $2.6 billion auto-sector loan. It was lent to Chrysler by the Harper government in co-operation with the Ontario government back in 2009 to bail them out of Canada's economic crisis.
Documents in the 2018 Public Accounts of Canada reveal that there has been no official explanation for the write-off. The loan, which has grown in interest over the last nine years, has been considered "non-performing" - meaning it hasn't seen any repayment from Chrysler.
Absolute abuse of government. Over a billion dollars of puplic money loaned to a private sector company and never repaid.— blackflag (@Kabba66) October 22, 2018
John Babcock of Global Affairs Canada said this, "After exhausting all potential avenues for recovery, a $1.125 billion US principal plus accrued interest write-off in respect of 'Old Chrysler' occurred in March."
While that's pretty much the extent of what we know about the write-off, we also know that it's among the largest ever for a taxpayer-funded bailout.
I am telling my employer to stop taking taxes off my cheque.— Max Copperhead (@max_copperhead) October 22, 2018
Canadians might also recall that the government bailed out General Motors back in 2009. They currently have an outstanding loan of $1 billion. One of the kickers here? Chrysler and GM aren't even Canadian companies.
As you can imagine, Canadians are absolutely furious. For good reason, too. The total amount lost on company bailouts for taxpayers equals over an astonishing $3.5 billion.
The news has resulted in political social media feuds. Who's to blame here, Trudeau or Harper?
So we have to eat the loan made by Harper just like we had to eat Billion$$ loss on the GM shares that Harper sold at a loss— TFitz (@FinsFitz) October 22, 2018
Others are staying away from the politics of it all and focusing on the fact that the Canadian taxpayers are being totally screwed over to protect corporations.
This is further evidence if why public money should NEVER be used to bail out private companies.— Kate Tagseth 🇨🇦 (@ktagseth) October 22, 2018
Next step will be that Chrysler will pull out of Canada in the same way Caterpillar and US Steel did.
If you support capitalism, there are incumbent risks. Taxpayers should not pay.
So you can write off a 2.6 billion dollar debt but I still have to pay back my student loan @JustinTrudeau That seems fair.... NOT— Tara Sue (@TaraSuzz) October 22, 2018