It certainly doesn't help that the administration made a stupid business decision with that money, but I believe that this stupid business decision was in part fueled by the shortsighted political rhetoric surrounding the bailout (people who don't want to buy from "government motors" because they'd rather shoot themselves in the foot than just suck it up and deal with the reality of the situation). That shortsighted political nonsense is actually harming the country as much as the initial bailout did, if not more.
We had a chance to recoup our investment if, instead of playing political games, our leaders asked us to rally behind the decision to help an American company. We could have helped GM become successful without
them having the need
to go into China. We didn't do that, though, for various reasons. For some people, it was a distaste for GM product which pre-existed the bailout. There's no fault in that. But for many, it is mostly
due to political views, and I do
find fault in that.