Your bailout money is going to anonymous investors. If the US Treasury is bailing out Chrysler, shouldn't the public know who owns it? Astonishingly, it appears that we don't know, and the government hasn't even asked. Robert Farago of The Truth about Cars attempted to penetrate the veil of secrecy, and asked, to no avail.
Chrysler was bought out by Cerebrus, a politically well-connected buyout firm, with the help of 100 co-investors, whose identities remain secret.
I asked Cerberus Spokesman Peter Duda straight up: can he provide a list of the investors who own Chrysler? His answer was equally direct: "No. We don't release that information."
Why? After all, we know the investors in many other Cerberus businesses. Duda stonewalled. I asked him if the information blackout was Cerberus' decision or did the investment group have a contractual obligation with these investors to maintain confidentiality? Duda promised to look into the matter for us.
And here's the kicker.
When I pressed Duda on the public's right to know who owned Chrysler- as Uncle Sam had provided the company with a $4b loan- Duda said "If the government asked for the information, we'd provide it." So had they? "Not to my knowledge."
If the U.S. Treasury Department has this information, why haven't they released it? If they don't have it, why haven't they demanded it?
It is our money -- by the billions -- bailing out these strangers. Who the hell are they?