The view from GM. Inconvenient Muslim terrorism. Revolution and China. Petreaus and Ike, plus more.
FORD LUCK, GENERAL MOTORS
Re: G. Tracy Mehan, III’s Ford Is a Better Idea:
I am getting tired of reading about how great Ford is (it is, but that is beside point) simply because it had the fortune (or misfortune) to be in far worse shape than GM before the economic tsunami smacked ALL of the worlds auto producing elite.
Ford went to Wall Street a few years ago, leveraged and mortgaged all of its assets, including the blue oval and the glass house, to raise the capital it needed to survive, let alone survive the severe economic downturn.
Ford got its money, good for it.
When GM went to the street to do the same GM was told “Sorry, no money to lend…have a good day.”
GM was out of cash. That tends to happen to large auto companies when sales volumes worldwide are cut in half due to the recession. The choices were now to either beg the government for a loan or go out of business. Liquidate. Now that may have seemed like a good idea to all the pure capitalists in the world, but GM going under would have had catastrophic effect on the Michigan economy and huge effects on the USA and world economies. Not exactly prudent in the middle of a huge recession. Ford and the rest of the “model” car companies (i.e. Toyota — not such a great model after all, eh?) would have been in serious trouble as well, because most of the suppliers would have went belly up when GM quit paying the bills.
It wouldn’t have just effected Michigan either — California? Smug, arrogant, Prius driving fools, Guess which company buys the most from your Silicon Valley? It ain’t Toyota.
We shipped billions of dollars to Katrina victims, Billions of dollars to bail out Greece, hundreds of billions to rebuild Iraq and Afghanistan, but to save the world’s largest automaker, a victim more of economic circumstances than of “poor management” as the pundits like to decry, well, we just can’t do that, can we? That would be a crime. How many tax dollars have Iraqis or New Orleans contributed to the U.S. Treasury over the years vs. what GM has “contributed”? How many of you smug east coast pundits were part of the “arsenal of democracy”, helping us win WW2? But when GM needs a hand, sorry, what have you done for me lately?
Yes, GM made mistakes — most of these mistakes can be attributed to basically creating the middle class in America, for God’s sake, to deals made long before global competition shrank market share — in hindsight, bad business, at the time, taking care of your workers. No one was complaining then.
GM has plenty of outstanding vehicles, the best fleet from A to Z in the world; gas miser cars to full fledged SUV’s/Trucks. GM sold the most vehicle worldwide in April, even with the “Government Motors” shadow hanging over their heads — you don’t do that unless you have the products. The government didn’t just come in from on high and develop these vehicles, they were in the hopper long before they stepped foot here.
Yes, GM overpaid workers (held hostage by the UAW) and provided health care and pensions to its retirees — shameful actions, no doubt, but guess who gets to pay for all that now (taxpayers). Congratulations.
Look at Ford’s balance sheet — it owes as much money as GM — except it owes it to creditors, GM owes it to the taxpayers.
Since the taxpayers had to bail out most of the money lenders on Wall Street, de facto, Ford owes the same people (us) for the money it borrowed.
So crucify GM all you want and praise Ford to the high
heavens for its “luck” of being on the brink of bankruptcy when
there was still private money to be borrowed.
— Mark Bruni
Shelby Township, Michigan
BLINDED BY HATE
Re: R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr.’s The Times Square Surprise: