Wednesday :: May 20, 2009

Ford and GM Finally Shut Up


by paradox

Lately my writing output and political outlook has been slumpy with California in an endless financial crisis and the Obama administration strapping on Bush era equipment to keep destroying our judicial ethos, so I was chagrined to realize I missed the details of the CAFE announcement news last night, man I could have used the pick-me-up.

Finally, after watching decades of stupidity and infuriating lobbyist power horribly erode our national and environmental security, auto fuel efficiency regulations were urgently jacked up yesterday, news I never thought would arrive, the insanity of how we produce automobiles and buy off politicians seemingly irrevocably baked into the American psyche.

Katharine Mieszkowski of Salon described the rose garden scene as one of Ford and GM executives sucking it up as one of their most ferocious battles against the public good and the Earth was at last lost, but the stupid fools deserve not the stalwart take-one-for-the-team metaphor in the least, these gross failures of intellect and production finally had their loathsome chattering lips taped shut as reality and common sense—not to mention base respect for the little people and America—was rammed down their throats hours before, the fat bands of silver duct tape slapped on promising a lot of pain when removed. Good.

Ford and GM spent the last 20 years sneering and snorting high efficiency standards would result in those “little shit boxes” Toyota, Honda and Nissan produced so well on a fast massive rout of the American car market, but absolutely no screaming metric of their failure over the years would ever change them, they damn well knew America, the American consumer and what would sell. We know what we’re doing, oh yes, it was so plain to see.

Broke, humiliated and under the tether of government—they so vociferously railed against government standards, which only delivered them manifestly more obeisance to Uncle Sam had they just wised up in the first place—Ford and GM simply took it yesterday, it very well could be too late, but they finally accepted reality and truth they can’t produce for shit, quality isn’t bad these days but it doesn’t mean jack if you decide to engineer for a SUV hybrid monstrosity that gets 20 mpg. Yes, the American management brilliance of GM pulled that off a few years ago.

Electric cars and companies may be busting out all over—there’s a new tiny one in Campbell just three miles from here—but what’s always never stated in the reports is that it’s not just the savory electric car market potential opening up driving emerging companies, but also a searing disgust and contempt for Ford and GM management. Capable, competent successful management minds are positive they can do better than the chumps (a kind description) at Ford and GM and are actually taking a shot at empirically proving it.

We shall see what happens, I’m hoping that 48 months of development will deliver a robust plugin so I can spend the 25 large I’ve got saved for a new car. If the freshly repaired 4-banger Honda doesn’t make it until them I’ll buy the new Ford Focus hybrid, which I only hear good things about.

I love America and cherish my Ford F-150 SuperCrew, a superb light truck that I’ll own ‘till I die. I would like nothing better than to buy an American small car, but I wouldn’t care if roaming Arabic Bedouins come up with a quality plugin, whoever does that fist if the Honda is running gets my family’s next small car sale. Duty to Al Gore and the Earth absolutely demand it, incompetence isn’t the only variable behind the utter contempt for those dunderheads running Ford and GM.

Perhaps this sucking it up is their bottom, as the chemical dependency folks say. Perhaps they will realize they desperately need to learn and grow, starting with the truth that the country will survive without muscle cars and SUV’s. Really really.

We’ll just have to wait to see how Ford and GM management react, 30 years of failure doesn’t precisely mean they’ll muff it again, stranger things have happened. Meantime the CAFÉ standard news is very sweet and good, thank you, President Obama. I needed the extremely good news, I’m sure Al Gore is extremely relieved and pleased too, thank you so much, sir.

paradox :: 6:17 AM :: Comments (14) :: Spotlight :: Digg It!