Here’s a great short article from Tyler Brule, editor in chief of my absolute favorite magazine, regarding the bailout of Detroit’s failing Big 3 automakers. My thoughts exactly.
I love how GM asked for all this money 90 % of it was to help finish building a 300 million dollar new plant they are building is Russia by claiming that America needs the cars so we need the money to finish the plant. Has zero to do with jobs or USA. Stunned!
Nice words Mr. Brûlé. Bravo!!
Much of this is very true…and I know you’re a Michigan guy yourself Mike so you know the severity of losing this industry. But I see this as an opportunity and I am all for rewarding based on merit. I think a low-cost loan awarded to companies that are able to meet certain EPA standards and fuel efficiencies. Other stipulations could include if a large percentage of these cars are built/manufactured in the US. I could see this also boosting demand/trimming up loose ends in these companies. Lets also not forget that the foreign market share that Ford and GM controls seems to be growing considerably.
I like Monocle and pretty much everything he had to say. I especially like the pushing of reclaiming craft. How many people are skilled in making things these days? It’s got to be way down from a couple generations ago. Taking pride in something you made or were a part of would have such a huge ripple effect. Thanks for posting this, definitely an awesome read.
Burle did a real good job with article I think he is on point for the most part here. I understand the issue of job loss, but I think this is a great opportunity for america to step away from the constant growth as goal model of capitalism, if the auto industry is left to rust. I believe a move toward a more equable form of what Paul Hawkin deems “natural capitalism”, spearheaded by small business, is a good example of a viable alternative. But back to auto industry, the big three all shunned investments into cleaner and renewable models of transit and fuel and are now getting stomped on by the Japanese. In addition, the lack of quality in the American automotive industry is embarrassing, I agree with the concepts Kevin has mentioned above, quality is paramount. I do not think in any way they deserve any kind of bailout, but I do fear for the job losses on a mass scale, that includes not only the big three but all the other organizations that live and die according the decisions of those corporations. I know that this could seem socialist, but a new public works project could quell the rising unemployment and put this country back on a positive trajectory. Thanks for posting this article Mike.
word to what you said Robin about a shift in American goals being needed! “sustainable growth” seems like an oxymoron to me. I dont think I know thermodynamics too well but sustainable growth sounds like perpetual motion, right? And that doesnt work anywhere else, why would it work in the economy? If we have some huge downturn, that would stink for the little people both in the auto industry and the supporting industries thanks to the uncontrollable greed and short sightedness of the few in power. But then again the little people should be used to that kind of being screwed over by now. Let the market stabilize itself- I’d rather see people being paid by the government to walk around and sweep the streets and plant trees or just about anything to improve our world visually or otherwise than throw money into a dwindling fire of the big 3.
ford product quality is currently up to par with toyota (though not comparable by any means) and they’re in a better position then GM and chrysler for the future. it’s a political thing now so the bailout will indeed happen in time. these hi-up bastards need salary caps so their poor ideas aren’t just increasing their bank account size. as pathetic and hopeless as the situation with the big 3 may be, the attitude dude expressed in the article “let the big 3 rust” is understandable to a degree but not with what comes next to the metro detroit area. reformation is key. we don’t need to be the next flint.
Great article- especially the point about bringing back quality and craftsmanship, something the foreign auto makers have had an edge on for decades. I don’t necessarily agree about letting the big3 sink… Lets say the big bail out comes with conditions: the money be used to make cars with an outstanding level of fuel efficiency, create a large number of american jobs, and rid some of the stagnant corporate dinosaurs and replacing them with new energy and designs.
Something that the article mentions and also concerns me about Obamas plan for economic recovery is no emphasis on public transit. Obamas big plan includes putting america back to work by repairing our crumbling road/bridge infrastructure. Maybe its far fetched, but could the demise of the big3 and our degraded road infrastructure infact be a great opportunity to build efficient public transit? Imagine if the money used to bail out Detroit and the money for road repairs was put into efficient mass transit. Trains and other transit able to meet the demands of moving people efficiently seems to be a real answer. Even if we build the most fuel efficient cars imaginable, there will still be congested traffic as populations increases, increased pavement in the place of tree’s, and unrelenting urban sprawl. Living in the city, I can attest to how inadequate public transit is and how much it could improve. Even in outlying areas and suburbia, if efficient trains moved people instead of highways we could have some progress.
Lets look at the big picture here instead of just bandaging the wounds.
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