• Bill Burke Posted: 10/19/2008 12:49pm PDT

    How can it be that management at all three American auto companies have performed so poorly? Who are the culprets? The corrupt and greedy unions? The corrupt and greedy managers? The corrupt and greedy oil companies? The corrupt and greedy politicans? The poorly performing and indifferent workers? The myopic, "follow what's hip", American consumers who MUST drive foreign (especially on the coasts) or feel out of step with their peers? The "hate America" auto-press which gives consistent negative reviews to U.S. product and turns a blind eye to foreign offerings? Quick buck operations like Ceberus, do they undermine the efforts of management and employees to rebuild a faultering American icon? Is it the "green" wing of government that insists on unreasonable and costly standards which produce negligable improvements? Do greedy and incompetent dealers share blame? Is it all of us who have to take a look inside and to conclude " is my behavior helping or hurting?" When brands like Hummer, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, and Mercury are on the chopping block, when brands like Plymouth and Oldsmobile are just a memory, somethig is very wrong. Fellow Americans, it should matter.

  • Reece Posted: 10/19/2008 7:32pm PDT

    Teh one thing they all have in common is poor management. Tehy have gone from one disaster to another since the 1970's. The only thing saving them for some time ws low petrol prices and trucks (directly linked to each other) so isntead of using that money to invest in a broad range of products sot hat if the market turned they would still have profitable products. But no they just invested in more bling. Look at Toyota, BMW, and VW Group. They have used their size to ensure they had good products in each market they enter not one or two profitable niche models. If you don't believe it is manageemnt then why can foreign automakers make money and good products from US factories? While the unions contributed to the problem, managemnts capitulation to them are their own fault, as has been their poor product development, bad marketing and lack of investment intheir own products and factories. All these point to management not workers, not unions, not the banks and not the american people. Management of the big three is the prime culprit. Sad to say but maybe buyout by foreginers who can bring in proper management may be the only way to save those iconic brands. Whose job should be saved the workers (blue and white collar) or the management?

  • geoff thomas Posted: 10/19/2008 9:59pm PDT

    What we have here is a failure of capitalism combined with bad management and atrocious political leadership.
    Detroit starting pumping out suv's because the profit per unit was much higher, and the US public stupidly bought them. Meanwhile overseas manufacturers who had to sell to much poorer markets and with higher gas prices generally avoided the trap.
    Part of the blame rests in Detroit, part in Washington and part in our living rooms.
    If we had a high gas tax in place beginning 20 years ago how much better would our automakers be doing now? I think much better.

  • Ed Posted: 10/21/2008 12:34pm PDT

    Hummer: good riddance to bad rubbish.

  • Ed Posted: 10/21/2008 12:42pm PDT

    "Bill Burke
    October 19th, 2008 - 11:49 am
    How can it be that management at all three American auto companies have performed so poorly? Who are the culprets(SIC)?
    1. The corrupt and greedy unions?
    YES, at least 30% of the blame
    2. The corrupt and greedy managers?
    YES! another 35%!
    3. The corrupt and greedy oil companies?
    NO. OPEC, NOT the oil cos, owns the oil, and is greedy to get the most of it. It is THEIR oil, and they got the RIGHT to price it as high as they can. WE the consumers ALSO have the right to consume as little of it as we want, and drive its price down from $147 in July to $69 last week!
    But OPEC is not so relevant any more, not when CHINESE Oil demand growth is more responsible for pushing prices higher (AS WELL AS US higher demand due to the STUPID SUV craze from 1995 until 2007)
    4. The corrupt and greedy politicans?
    ALWAYS. at least 20%.
    5. The poorly performing and indifferent workers?
    Maybe 15%. Most if it is the corrupt unions above.
    "The myopic, “follow what’s hip”, American consumers who MUST drive foreign (especially on the coasts) or feel out of step with their peers?"
    Those idiots that followed what's hip were the ones that bought the GOD DAMNED StupidUglyVehicles and Pickups they NEVER NEEDED, because they would not be caught dead in a MINIVAN. BUT most of these were DOMESTIC, even the imports build most of their SUVs in US plants.
    Anyway, now th edinosaurs are EXTINCT as were the muscle cars in the 70s, gas prices have come down from $4.50 to $2.75, and consumers will keep driving LESS AND LESS, for years to come, and the next design cycle will be VERY FUEL EFFICIENT, SOBER vehicles and not such automotive atrocities as the stupid SUVS.
    And that pleases me greatly.

  • David L Posted: 10/21/2008 12:48pm PDT

    I think the question on everyone's minds is where one can purloin such an intoxicating eau de toilette. As if the marketing geniuses at GM didn't waste enough time and money pushing underpowered, plastichromed, fuel-glugging mastodons on the American consumer, they have to push a complimentary cologne. It's only marginally dumber than FoMoCo's celebrated Mustang for Men or Volvo's brilliant mock cologne ad in C/D which when opened and rubbed on skin left you wreaking of radials for the next two days. It's no wonder these two once-venerable houses have seen sales and share prices plummet in recent years. Give us a reason to be proud to buy American! The new CTS and Malibu are good starts. But they must continue to roll out designs that inspire and endure, and that appeal to an evolving and increasingly frugal consumer. Like, um, the Envoy XUV, of course, and the Lincoln Mark LT.