11.19.2008

Bailout Deja Vu

A couple of days ago, I reluctantly spoke out in favor of bailing out the auto industry, primarily because of the number of workers, both inside and outside of the industry, who will be affected should the big three fail. Yesterday, the CEOs showed up on capital hill asking for the money.

Well, today I have a problem. You want my money, yet you show up by way of a private jet which is part of a fleet of 8 jets for corporate use, that costs approximately 20-thousand dollars per round trip, and you’re crying broke? That’s like my sister asking me for money to buy groceries just after she’s come from the beauty shop spending 100-dollars on her hair and 50-bucks on some fake finger nails. Negro, please. ABC reporter, Brian Ross, busted the CEOs. According to the Ross report, flying coach from Detroit to DC cost 288-dollars. Flying first class cost approximately 800-dollars round trip. Click here.

Okay guys, sell the jet, park the chauffeur driven car, fire your driver, hop a cab to the airport, check your own damn bag, and welcome to the real world, please.

There is obviously some kind of disconnect going on here. Keeping the corporate fleet while laying off workers just does not compute for me. Sounds a lot like the so called Chrysler bailout back in 1978-79.

As part of that bailout, Lee Iacocca and his executives allegedly took pay cuts, forgoing bonuses etc, with Iacocca supposedly reducing his own compensation down to 1-dollar a year. Well, all those salaries and bonuses and perks were deferred and retroactively paid. They didn’t lose a dime or suffer, while some 60-thousand workers were furloughed. You can read more about the Chrysler bailout here.

This current crop of CEOs blame the weakened economy rather than their own short sightedness and ineptness for the problems plaguing them. But the problems started back in the 70's when Toyota began making inroads into the American market. Back then, management refused to adapt to changing times. Click here for more.

These guys need to get a grip. These CEOs need to understand that if you do something stupid like ruin your company, then you lose. The American taxpayer should not have to pay for your silliness. There is a cost to doing business in an unregulated system. The American people told Detroit 40 years ago, what kind of cars it wanted, but Detroit refused to listen, feeding the myth while totally ignoring the reality of the road.

Maybe it is time for the Big Three to deal with the fact that it’s time to pay the piper.
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