Untergang for GM?

Print Friendly

Picture that scene in the bunker. The Fuhrer railing at his generals, spittle-spewing maledictions about their treachery and lies.Utergang 1

Cue GM CEO Mary Barra – poor woman – inside the tube towers, ashen-faced subordinates sitting around the big table… .

How could this have happened? And (probably) Why must I be surrounded by idiots?

Actually, they were pretty smart. I mean, the people responsible for what will likely prove to be GM’s untergang. Because they left before the “eastern front” collapsed. Here I mean people like ex-GM CEO Dan Akerson, who had to have known. The guy was in charge when GM – the “new” GM” – admits the “old” GM knew there was a design defect with the ignition switches installed in millions of GM vehicles over a period stretching from circa 1998-2007, almost an entire decade. Akerson knew – and split.

Leaving the proverbial bag for Barra to hold.

That’s smart. Sociopathic. But very, very smart.

And now, the fallout.Barra congress pic

GM is not going to survive it.

Because the company has become a joke. The Government Motors thing stuck in a lot of people’s craws – rightly so. But at least the cars were getting pretty good again… right?

Which they seemed to be. They certainly looked good and seemed to perform well. But now, there’s this. Do you trust GM? Would you want to be holding the keys to a GM vehicle . . . with the not-unreasonable nagging worry about what else they may have cheaped out on rattling around in your head?GM lemon pic How many moms are feeling uneasy about letting their teenage son or daughter head off to prom in a GM vehicle?

It’s not a great feeling, GM.

How about the millions of people who currently own GM vehicles who are almost certainly going to be dealing with a hit to their personal bottom lines – whether they own one of the known lemons or not? The feces that just hit the fan over the defective ignition switches will spray every GM-badged vehicle, tumbling resale values down the stairs like a cripple falling out of his wheelchair. How angry would that make you? It would make me very angry. Doesn’t matter whether a new Corvette or CTS is a fantastic car. If it depreciates by 50 percent rather than the usual 30 over the next five years because people don’t want anything to do with them on the second-hand market… you’re the one left holding the bag.

Not Akerson, et al.

In the car business – as in almost any business – the equity you’ve got (or not) in your name is, well, everything.

What equity has GM got in “GM” these days?GM pic

It may no longer matter that the cars are good. People have to believe they are good. It is that belief in the goodness (or not) of a given make that determines whether people will take the leap of faith involved in plunking down a wad of cash for an item that, next to their house, is usually the greatest financial commitment of their lives. People continue to buy Toyota/Lexus vehicles almost in their sleep – and notwithstanding that there are a number of equally appealing alternatives, if you go by the objectives.

But Toyota (and Honda and several others) have the subjectives on their side. The belief that, hey, this is a good car. Toyotas are solid. The company is not run by sociopaths. Toyota would never continue to build cars with a known serious defect  . . . for years after becoming well-aware that the defect existed.

Whether this is actually true is beside the point. It is what people believe about Toyota.

And GM?cheesy GM

It is not a stretch to state that probably millions of people now believe that GM is capable of almost any form of skullduggery. Such people will never buy a GM car – no matter how rave the reviews, no matter how otherwise appealing they may be. It is exactly of a piece with the mindset of the Holocaust survivor who would rather walk barefoot along the Interstate in 100 degree heat than ride in the climate-controlled, leather-swathed opulence of a Mercedes.

Can you blame him?

Mistakes are one thing. But when people associate you – or your brand – with serial and deliberate assholeness, it’s a bridge burned that can’t be rebuilt.

That’s the situation now facing GM.GM terminal

I read an excellent article recently by former car industry PR guy Pete DeLorenzo (see here) in which he argues that the only solution at this point – if anything at all is to be salvaged – would be for the still-viable brands subsumed under the GM mantle (i.e., Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick) to be spun-off as separate, independent car companies. Before the cancer spreads to them. The fiasco mostly involves already dead brands anyhow – Pontiac and Saturn, mainly. Chevrolet is vulnerable – the Cobalt compact was among the sick listed – but there’s still  equity in the bowtie. Per deLorenzo, save what can be saved, while there is still time.

GM itself is terminal.

There’s no coming back from this one.

Throw it in the Woods?

Share Button

  67 comments for “Untergang for GM?

  1. Garysco
    July 17, 2014 at 12:22 pm

    Good thing for GM that they are a hot seller….. in China.

    GM lawyers blasted for ‘deceit’ in switch recall
    Nathan Bomey and James R. Healey, Detroit Free Press, USA TODAY

    General Motors’ legal chief came under immediate fire at a Senate subcommittee hearing today. “How in the world did Micheal Millikin keep his job,” exclaimed Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), chair of the Senate Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety and Insurance.

    Millikin’s lawyers were involved in “cover-up, concealment, deceit and even fraud,” and probably will be accused of crimes by the Justice Department, said Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.).

  2. Chris Condon
    May 19, 2014 at 7:47 pm

    I have owned a couple of GM cars, a 1987 Cadillac de Ville and a 2005 Buick LeSabre. With both cars I began to experience pain and discomfort in both ankles and feet. I have no idea what caused this, and it has apparently never happened to me in any other automobile. Adjusting the seats does no good. Neither do after-market devices like a Sacro Ease. If anyone out there has any opinion as to what caused my problem, I would appreciate your letting me know. I am completely stumped!

    • eric
      May 20, 2014 at 6:48 am

      Hi Chris,

      It probably has to do with the position (and “give”) of the seat relative to your body and its position relative to the controls. Pedal height and placement is another big factor.

      I drive a different new car each week and find that some fit me much better than others. In some, my lower back gets sore after as little as half an hour behind the wheel. Others I could drive for hours without physical strain of any kind.

      This is something that’s hard to quantify – because it’s so highly individually variable. It’s why I always advise an extended (1 hour at least) test drive before the purchase of any new car.

  3. Jim Henshaw
    April 18, 2014 at 1:44 pm

    I’m astonished that anyone still buys ANYTHING built by the UAW. Owned three such cars, all pieces of shite — thought that all cars were like that, constantly breaking down — then I bought my first Toyota, a Camry. Still have it, rusted and bad struts and way over 100K miles and dented all to hell from the kids learning to drive in it — and it still runs every time you turn the ignition. Never once left me stranded on the side of the road, other than having to change a flat tire once.

    Bought two more Toyotas and a Honda after that, still own all of them. Next car probably a Hyundai Genesis.

  4. April 16, 2014 at 3:11 pm
  5. April 15, 2014 at 1:14 pm

    While I sincerely hope this is the end of GM, I doubt it. The democrats will protect the union loyalists and their jobs, at least until the next election, and all the republicans will rally around the flag & chant “buy American.” Those of us who cry foul will we be called unpatriotic traitors, as glassy eyed redneck repukes, & welfare sucking demoncrats look at us and say, “Murica! FTW” Only when the nation is so broken that it is impossible for them to figure out how to pay for it will it finally stop. In the meantime I’ll just keep driving my old Toyota ’til it dies at which point I’ll go buy another old Toyota to replace it.

  6. April 15, 2014 at 3:34 am

    Thank you Helot,

    Well put. As much time as I spend commenting, it would be a productive undertaking, to cut and paste the “best and final” positions of all the excellent minds here on the important matters.

    My individual position, is:
    1 open all borders
    2 remove all restraints
    3 move all that is essential government to military bases/Spartan enclaves. The defenders of this property will be the Spartan class. Bad Spartans will be ousted by their fellows. New Spartans will be accepted based on publicly provided Spartan requirements and specifications. As before, having military connections may still be important.
    4 destroy all other centralized records and systems, if it’s your property, prove it by successfully defending it. Prove your identity, earned privileges, and accomplishments with your own resources. Use private enterprise equivalents for disputes and protection, if you can afford them, and if they exist in your area.
    5 open all non-military institutions to looting and possession by squatting. The new librarian class will defend their libraries. The park class will defend their public parks.
    6 this may put the wealthy in the same place as the Spaniards after Cortez burned the irreplaceable ships. Once institutions are smashed, the smashers may come after the genuinely productive. Do what you can to help the good ones protect themselves. Allow those who choose not to fight to flee and take their wealth and means of production with them.
    7 assuming no other nations reciprocate, and keep their governments…
    7b you’ll have to produce things to acquire goods from abroad
    7c you’ll have to innovate and grow your way out of your temporary disadvantage.
    8 the NAPs are private shared behavior standards, they gain nothing from politicking. You’ll be free to engage in NAP alliances at your own expense of course.
    9 new men of mind will need to take time to find order in the ensuing seeming chaos. Spontaneous order can be made sense of, it just takes sufficient acumen. The best of these are probably more important than the military class, treat them accordingly.
    10 this new reality will be one of Manifold Destiny(many destinies). This new reality may be terrible for most, an experiment that fails in a short time, and overrun by a counter-revolution. Be prepared for that as well.

    This is Anarchism. Its more likely that Left Anarchism will prevail than Right Anarchism. You can do your best to attain a higher form of right anarchism, while being prepared to begin somewhere in the lower left anarchism spectrum. Just like now, you may have to form your private anarcho-capitalist system in secret amid a new antagonistic system of a different stripe.

    This Is Anarchism (In 10 Minutes)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=__vv6eRj2-k

    Galt’s Gulch is at the bottom far right of the purple square.

    The best systems such as from Carl Menger are still in the development phase. The most accesible one is marginal utility. Your first gallon of water might cost you a hundred dollars. The price will go down for excess gallons. Removal of the state, might merely mean a new form of mass control through natural scarcity, where food and water are sold at exorbitant levels to the those without other options. Undertake effort to reduce the scarcity, or pay the high prices, those are the only two options.

    We can develop markets and Agoras based on the best research, and propagate them as best we are able, but it’s likely there is currently not enough wealth or productive power behind Austrian Economics.

    Likewise, NAPs are the ideal, but in practice, what we can achieve today is a new capitalism without fortresses, castles, and hierarchies. The many can cooperate to stop the few from colluding to build dominant oligarchical monstrosities. This may lower overall wealth in the short term. A huge new torrent of new wealth will need to be immediately generated and immediately sold at the market price, no matter how low it is. Otherwise external oligarchs will succeed in a counter-revolution.

    NAP is generally a natural process that occurs around wealthy people who do not need to subjugate others to obtain wealth, or to enjoy spending wealth. Live and let live might begin as us being similar to freed slaves who still need to return to tobacco, cotton, and cubical fields to do hard labor to pay the bills. The improvement may largely be a moral one, and not an economic one.

    • Helot
      April 15, 2014 at 5:22 am

      Fixed this for ya: “Undertake effort to reduce the scarcity, or pay the high prices, Or Have Others Willingly Give You Charity To Pay Your Way, those are the only Three options.

      Re: ” Otherwise external oligarchs will succeed in a counter-revolution.”

      Hell No. There’s too many armed MoFo’s who want to keep what is their’s for that to happen,.. Imho. Ha. YMMV? But who the hell knows? It’s a free for all.

      • April 15, 2014 at 6:20 am

        Helot, good point. Things we now take for granted, won’t necessarily always be. Helots hold tight to what they manage to get. You’ll have a Hel of a time trying to take property away from a Helot. When Helots Ascend, it’ll no longer be possible to rob him with some soft soap about his importance and status in the commonweal.

        Once the Rise of the Helots is complete, if one cannot afford essentials, one will need to produce their own substitute,adapt and do without, or make acquaintance with a benefactor who can provide for them.

        Heel-ots, Meet John Doe, 1941 (*brilliant!*)
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i1HcJJbn_gc

        The Story of Greece: The Helots
        http://www.mainlesson.com/display.php?author=macgregor&book=greece&story=helots

        The Helots

        Each Spartan had a portion or “lot” of land given to him, on the produce of which he and his family had to live. But citizen soldiers had no time to dig the ground, to sow, to reap, for all the days were spent in drill and military exercises. So their land was cultivated for them by the Helots, who had owned Laconia before the Spartans conquered them and took possession of their land.

        The Helots were treated very much as slaves, although they had no taskmasters to drive them to their work. They were even allowed to own property. But they had many hardships to endure, and were always ready to rebel against their masters.

        One of their greatest hardships was that their lives were never safe. For while the Spartans were being trained, they were often sent into the country with orders to kill any Helot who was suspected of wishing to rebel.

        In time of war the Helots fought as light-armed troops. If they showed themselves brave and loyal in the service of the State, they were sometimes rewarded by being made free.

        Once during the great Peloponnesian War between Sparta and Athens, the Spartans believed that the Helots had plotted to rise against them. They determined that the rising should never take place, and to prevent it they did a cruel deed.

        They chose two thousand of the bravest Helots, set them free, and gave them a great feast to celebrate the event. Then when the feast was over and the Helots had gone away to their homes, suspecting nothing, the Spartans ordered each of the two thousand freed men to be put to death. When the bravest were killed the others were not likely to rebel.

  7. Bryce
    April 14, 2014 at 9:09 am

    A big part of GM’s problem is that it’s Just.Too.Big:

    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/hidden-motives/201404/general-motors-too-big-fix

    Being Just.Too.Big was a factor in the fall of the Soviet Union and GM. That’s because the human race evolved as bands that topped out at 150 people. Beyond that, things start to break down. The same is happening of our government.

  8. April 14, 2014 at 8:48 am
  9. April 14, 2014 at 6:12 am

    On a free internet, we would be using the Throw it in the Woods customized browser. And google-powered search engine. And email. Usual browser, search, and email, but with enough of Dom and Eric’s custom tweaking to make it fun and informative.

    Harry Potter Hunger Games Mashup
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-CUrdhfnuFo

    The problem isn’t with the Chinese “stealing” everything. Nor the Mexicans “taking” everything. Is that Americans have had the pioneer spirit drummed out of them. We can copy everything the East Asians copy from our corporations.

    Let’s start moving to Canada, and enjoying their healthcare and sensible legal framework. Without their permission. Each ride a Seadoo to Chukotka with some gold and start running Eastern Russia the way we like things to run.

    http://www.alaskadispatch.com/article/expelled-russia-jet-ski-adventurers-back-alaska

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KfxvOT9_tUk

    Film Crew Traveling the World On Jet Skis
    http://on.aol.com/video/film-crew-traveling-the-world-on-jet-skis-517912989

    In an equally scofflaw world, a bunch of us could drive up to Alaska even and build a bridge across the Bering Sea and then use nearly the whole damn planet any way we please.

    We’re the biggest and most ruthless ones of all. Why give these megacartels even a millimeter? Why not stand on a corner of a Vancouver RONA or Home Hardware store and take somebody else’s jobs?

    Applalachian Pioneer’s Mountain Life – 1940
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RXUhtgCf-xw

    • Me2
      April 14, 2014 at 12:30 pm

      “Let’s start moving to Canada, and enjoying their healthcare and sensible legal framework.”

      LOL. As a Canadian, I can tell you that the healthcare is generally OK but severely restricted and rationed by MommyGov. I don’t know how bad the legal system is where you are but it must be truly awful to think the Canadian legal system is ‘sensible’. These are Kangaroo courts at best, especially when dealing with charges against police or politicians.

      • April 14, 2014 at 1:11 pm

        I’m in Las Vegas.

        The entire state is 25% Mexican, with most of them in the Vegas metro. Non-citizens can drive here, there’s a Mexican Consulate here. The governor is a former judge of Hispanic heritage.

        Yes, any skilled artisan has to compete with a lot of south of the border guys, but the most glaring difference is cost of living.

        Generally Mexicans consider their withholdings to be their taxes. There’s also some tricks involving TIN numbers for kids who are dual citizens – actually reside in Mexico, appear to reside in America for tax purposes.

        By far the biggest unfair system, is that you raise a kid in Mexico for almost no additional marginal cost, or a kid in Nevada for 25% of your income.

        Child care costs compared
        http://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2012/may/21/child-care-costs-compared-britain

        The 3 NAFTA nations could become a fully open border Schengen Area without too much trouble I would think.
        Then add the CAFTA, and finally the entire Americas.

        The PTB’re only giving us bad options, because they’ve been getting away with it for so long.

        The only things will improve, is for a lot of people to begin observing and sharing things on the ground with their own eyes. What Japan calls: Genchi Genbutsu.

        Genchi Genbutsu means “go and see” and it is a key principle of the Toyota Production System. In order to truly understand a situation one needs to go to gemba or, the ‘real place:
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genchi_Genbutsu

        I’m all for Rothbard and Block and the other theorists up to a point. But to make decisions, you have to base things on known facts you or someone you trust has ascertained to be true.

        The reality of NAFTA has helped humanity in the aggregate. But specifically in the US, in several know ways, it has been an unmitigated disaster.

        Either we need something closer to full bi-directional freedom. Or we need to revise these trade agreements, and go back to tariffs like before, in any areas that are grossly inequal.

        Also, put a halt to TPP until the fine print of it is available to everyone affected by it, otherwise it will final be the final nail in the US industrial coffin.

        • Garysco
          April 14, 2014 at 1:56 pm

          Once it was thought impossible for the three countries to consolidate into one bloc for several economic reasons. Within a few years with USD devaluations & other factors, mostly international treaties, it will happen. Unless enough cowboys and cowgirls do the Bundy ranch thing to the bankers and their political henchmen in charge of the transition.

          • April 14, 2014 at 6:15 pm

            Always Govts omit all good solutions as even being options. Take Ukraine. Stay clear. Or arm their Govt?

            How about no and no. What about small businesses selling small arms to individuals, so they can defend themselves from predatory Govts and alliances. Sell them on credit or through barter, since times are tough there right now.

            Whatever solutions we seek. What we want to do, is stop feeding the B.O.R.G.)

            B.O.R.G. is an acronym.
            http://www.titanians.org/the-borg/

            (as opposed to I.R.S. which is an initialization, because you pronounce each letter)

            B.O.R.G are the unholy trinity of institutions that are alleged to solve humanity’s societal problems:

            Big Banks/Big Business, big enough to influence legislation, to inflate, to pilfer

            ORganized Religion/ORganizations like MADD, ABA, or AARP

            and
            Government

            Banks, Organized Religion, Government is the BORG.

            The BORG is a PARASITE and like all parasites it is destined to eventually destroy the host.
            Each of us are the host. There has never been a societal problem that the BORG actually solved. Yet most of us keep expecting these institutions to improve our lives.

            This is ludicrous, as these institutions consistently make unethical anti-human decisions. Most of these unethical decisions are done to perpetuate the existence of the organization in the first place.

          • Garysco
            April 14, 2014 at 9:34 pm

            @Tor – Who is John Galt?

        • Helot
          April 14, 2014 at 3:36 pm

          I’m surprised to see you favor tariffs, Tor.

          Tariffs Breed Wars

          https://www.lewrockwell.com/lrc-blog/tariffs-breed-wars/

          “No one seems to understand the basic principle of international economics that a tax on imports (a tariff) is effectively a tax on exports as well. [...] Tariffs harm all consumers, but impose a disproportionate burden on export-dependent regions.” …

          http://www.lewrockwell.com/lrc-blog/morons-and-tariffs/

          “Probably the most successful conceptual error that is promoted by defenders of tariffs is this one: “Tariffs are good for the nation.”

          Tariffs, being sales taxes, are good for the national government, but they are not good for the nation. At best, they are less bad for the nation than a graduated income tax. But since both are collected, tariffs are not a benefit for the nation. [...]

          Defenders of tariffs believe that a man with a badge and a gun who sticks his gun in your belly as a consumer is a benefit to the nation.” …

          http://www.garynorth.com/public/11795.cfm

          I’m wondering if your debating the merits of being an Egalitarian?

          “the egalitarians
          are profoundly antihuman; and, therefore, their ideology and their
          activities may be set down as profoundly evil as well.

          http://www.lewrockwell.com/1970/01/murray-n-rothbard/were-not-equal/

          • April 14, 2014 at 4:17 pm

            Well, in practical terms, I can’t just be my own man entirely. Not such that I can just articulate points A-Z, AA-ZZ, and AAA-ZZZ.

            I bring up tariffs in response to Eric and others’ valid issues with “unfair trade treaties/double standards” et. al. I used the word tariff as shorthand for altering the deal (a la Darth Vader) of international trade at a certain point if certain criteria are met.

            Not on theoretical grounds, but survival grounds. We can’t deindustrialize down to infinity. If America isn’t adjusting to NAFTA and other agreements, and is facing imminent collapse(not sure it is) then other options are on the table.

            Option 7: Just take British Columbia and Yukon from Canada, to connect Alaska, get more water and oil, and elbow room. Probably take about 8 hours, since all they have are Mounties, LOL. (Pray I don’t alter the deal further – Darth Vader)

            So I skipped over 6 better ideas, but everything can be considered, included tariffs, which maybe are Option 4?

            I don’t have the desire or rigor to pick every position, but I wonder if there’s some kind of software that could help.

            I’ve not yet joined any group aka “I’m an anarcho-capitalist of the Ancient Israel, Old West, Rothbard variety.

            Though this does sound reasonable:

            “The argument could be made that anarcho-capitalism is the default form of government, arising in any situation where despotism has not arisen or has not yet arisen.

            The first so-documented historical example of an anarcho-capitalist society might be that of ancient Israel in the years leading up to the monarchy (“In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as he saw fit.” — Judges 21:25), other examples being medieval Iceland and the American Old West.

            But the first person to formulate anarcho-capitalism as a political philosophy was the 20th-century Austrian economist Murray Rothbard, who found his inspiration in the pre-Revolutionary but semi-postcolonial, trade-oriented governments of 18th-century North America.”

            But then these ancaps seem to write all kinds of blank checks to evil giant corps, and to absolutely prohibit slavery(I’m not a Sith) so I’m not sure what I am.

            http://civilliberty.about.com/od/libertarianpolitics/g/Anarcho-Capitalism-Definition.htm

            I’m probably staunchly anti-egalitarian. The more classes you can devise, the better, as long as there’s minimal force.

            Lew Rockwell and the founders/board behind this site are the founders class.
            Eric/Dom are owner class. People that donate are donor class. People that owned websites are webmaster class.

            People that post and receive kudos are comment class. People that post and are despised are troll class. The rest are lurker/visitor class.

            It’s been mathematically proven that a type of modified oligopoly, called the Nash Equilibrium, is the best outcome for all cooperating competitors. (this is a hideous oversimplification, but close enuf)

            Governing Dynamics – Nash Equilibrium – Nobody Goes for the Blonde
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2d_dtTZQyUM

          • Bevin
            April 14, 2014 at 8:30 pm

            Dear Helot,

            Tariffs are yet another violation of the NAP.

            They cannot be either moral, or even practical.

            They “protect” cronyists in bed with the goonvermin at the expense of ordinary consumers who don’t have well paid lobbyists in the Capitol of Panem.

          • Helot
            April 14, 2014 at 9:37 pm

            Bevin wrote, “Tariffs are yet another violation of the NAP.”

            Ya. No doubt. I’m amazed when people don’t notice.

            That’s why I was surprised (leaning towards shocked) that Tor would put them forth as a solution. Especially in light of this true comment of his: “Whatever solutions we seek. What we want to do, is stop feeding the B.O.R.G.)”

            Tor asked, “I don’t have the desire or rigor to pick every position, but I wonder if there’s some kind of software that could help.”

            Ya. It’s a ‘software’ called: your fellow human beings.

            “Chinese goods account for 2.7% of US PCE” – [I'd hardly call that "facing imminent collapse".] Not too mention all the American’t jobs that are created and dependent upon that importation.

            Tor, you freak me out when you use your Darth Vader voice.
            Especially when you skip over 6 better ideas.
            And (IMHO) No, everything can Not be considered,… er’ if you want to remain a Freedomista of any sort, that is.

            Tor wrote, “I’m probably staunchly anti-egalitarian.”

            It seems to me you really need to figure that out for sure.
            I only wish the other people in the unitedstate would give the matter 1/25 th the thought.

            Also, RE: “People that post and receive kudos are comment class. People that post and are despised are troll class.”

            I’m despised for making freedom and liberty comments elsewhere. It’s one of those, “beauty is in the eye of the beholder” things? Some people are quite frightened by liberty and terrified of freedom. When I was young we used to call those types, “Momma’s boys” , “Panzies” and “Pussies”.
            I guess the girls always got a free pass from us for some reason.
            …But not from a few other girls in the mould of MamaLiberty. Thank goodness for them.

          • to5
            April 28, 2014 at 10:29 pm

            Problem with tariffs is they go one way. Oz have a free trade agreement with US. We can send 70K tons of meat to US, they can send unlimited amounts of meat to Oz. Oz has 5% tariffs on cars, most Asian countries start at 40% on cars coming INTO their lands. The japs sell the same tvs in the US & Japan, however, in Japan the tvs cost 3 times the same tv going to USSA.

            Lack of tariffs has led to the degradation of both US & Oz industrial bases. Whole areas of manufacturing look now like ghost towns. What a waste of resources, just so a purchaser can “save” a few dollars on a $40K purchase. In the meantime, spare parts for cars become high priced and hard to get.

            And what is the cost of these closed factories? The disappearance of the local and national tax bases, unemployment, or employment at much lower wages, graffiti, gloom in the population, lack of job opportunities for children, the dismantling of the middle class. All because of the false words of economists, who know less about their “field” than any group on the planet.

            Lower tariffs also lead to a REDUCTION in manufacturing capital and investment. For no company wants to spend hundreds of millions without realizing a return on their money.

            Back in the late 90s, there was a surge in lead poisoning in merican kids. Turned out the chinese crayons had commercially mineable quantities of lead in them, which the kids absorbed into their bodies. The chinese companies were handed a please explain letter by the US gov’t, but had a merican company done this, there would have been lawsuits and prosecutions. All this due to lower tariffs.

            And now GM. Well these big companies are going along with agenda21. GM thought it would be a good idea to sleep with its regulators, but now they find a double edge sword. And it’s biting them bigtime. This company run by accountants, regulators who answer to no one, political agendas that cut into their business [like these "safety" rules and systems] that take the pleasure and freedom out of driving, and now the ceo is feeling the pressure rather than have the pleasure of running a successful company, now she has to figure out how to protect her fat ass from prosecution.

            The gov’t has forced GM into its fold, but is readying the knife to stab GM because the “corporation” did not abide by gov’ts rules.

            Kinda hard to sympathize with a company that has sucked big time off the gov’t titty. That titty is now full of poison.

          • Bevin
            April 28, 2014 at 10:57 pm

            Dear to5,

            Incorrect. Even if a foreign government imposes tariffs, one is still better off if “one’s own government” doesn’t “retaliate.”

            Bastiat laid this all out centuries ago in an orderly and irrefutable fashion. But even many who purport to be champions of the free market haven’t caught on.

            I won’t bother proving my case, because it was already proved long ago. Anyone interested in the facts can Google “Bastiat tariffs” for himself.

            Violations of the NAP, such as the imposition of tariffs by gunvermin at gun point, are often rationalized as something that may be wrong, but will pay off in the long run. Never happens. Wrong only begets more wrong, not just morally, but even practically.

            http://bastiat.mises.org/2014/03/death-of-an-auto-industry/

      • werner
        April 18, 2014 at 5:30 pm

        Your criticism of the Canadian universal healthcare system is not entirely correct. The premiums for my spouse and I are about fourteen hundred dollars annually. My employer pays for it and we also enjoy an extended healthcare benefit which covers 80% of all prescription costs. There is no dental coverage included. We have a 7 percent provincial sales tax which funds the healthcare system in addition to the premiums. People who are on social assistance have their premiums paid for by the government. Nobody is rejected or deprived of proper treatment. Period.

        Both my spouse dealt with cancer. We both were treated right away with operations, chemo therapy and radiation. We are both doing well now! We did not pay a single cent at any time. All the procedures were done speedily using the latest equipment by highly educated caring and compassionate doctors and nurses.

        • Brian
          April 18, 2014 at 11:44 pm

          Hello Werner,
          I invite you to watch a couple of You-tube videos by a well known (among the pro-individual liberty/anti-statist crowd) Canadian philosopher Stefan Molyneux:
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kXOAK-eVnjU
          and
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qnMGjDOz98k
          I very strongly disagree with Stefans choice of using modern so-called medical choices based upon my distrust of the establishment anything funded in part by government; but he is free to commit slow suicide by trusting the latest (non-scientific) methods.
          Here is just the most recent video that I have just watched today which illustrates a viable and pro-liberty option to a standard medical procedure that the PTB would rather you and the masses never hear about:
          http://youtu.be/_BOJA98W6b0

          • werner
            April 19, 2014 at 10:57 am

            What matters here are overall results. Our experience has been extremely positive. Friends are equally satisfied with how the system works in real life. Many people have political and financial profit agendas and one must not believe everything they say. If it wasn’t for the way our healthcare system looked after us we would be living in a tent now or in a van. We here in Canada have also access to the US media and the horror stories coming from there are not always fabricated for sensationalistic purposes. If one has piles of money of course the issue is not important, no matter where one is living.

        • Me2
          June 15, 2014 at 3:27 pm

          Lucky you. I mean getting prompt treatment, not cancer.

          I have had some good and some bad experiences with the Canadian health care. YMMV

          “Nobody is rejected or deprived of proper treatment.” Blanket statement and complete strawman.

          Tell it to the people I know who are still on waiting lists for care. They may not be denied coverage but they certainly have been denied TIMELY coverage.

          • eric
            June 15, 2014 at 5:48 pm

            In re this:

            “Nobody is rejected or deprived of proper treatment.”

            Even if – for the sake of discussion – we accept it as true, it’s beside the point.

            The point is, simply: My “treatment” (and what constitutes “appropriate” treatment) does not impose an obligation enforceable by violence upon others.

            Nor theirs on me.

            “Helping” others is not the issue. Being forced to do so is.

            Even if the “help” were truly deserved in every case. Because – again – the fact that Smith is experiencing trouble, even through no fault of his own – doesn’t justify his doing Jones (or anyone else) violence.

            Period.

            Clovers will denounce this as harsh, mean-spirited. But what could be harsher – more mean-spirited – than threatening random strangers with lethal violence in order to coerce their assistance? The random suffering that attends living is bad. Deliberate, unprovoked violence that destroys other people’s peace of mind, their physical and thereby psychological security – is much worse.

            Jones may elect to help Smith, either directly or by contributing to some sort of general charity. This is not only right, ethically – it acts as necessary check on the otherwise inevitable gross abuse of “help” at gunpoint (e.g., EBT parasites, people who will not behave responsibly, ever, because they know they’ll get their gibs muh dat regardless).

            Bottom line: No “good” ever justifies aggressive violence.

        • Me2
          June 16, 2014 at 10:51 am

          Missed this the first time;

          Werner – “My employer pays for it”.

          No, you pay for it as the ‘medical’ is part of your compensation.

          Either way, the medical fees are extorted from us, without regard for whether we desire coverage or not. Saying ‘no’ is not an option.

          What is the definition of a person who cannot refuse the ‘request’ of others?

          Property? Slave? Chattel?

  10. April 14, 2014 at 5:39 am

    Neo Hides From Lumbergh
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XkDHDYy_9cE

    I don’t think it can be denied that this video represents some small increase to the wealth of the world.

    Are we supposed to be against it because the distributors of this movie didn’t get their cut. Or because it’s hosted on YouTube which is owned by Googuhl. Because the internet itself is mainly anarcho-communist in nature at the present time?

    Production has become cognitively discordant, it will take new thinking to integrate such things into the Libertarian/Anarcho fold, where, IMHO, they most assuredly should be welcome

    Office Space Big Lebowski Mashup
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWMgCQoOcY0

    President Obama Interview With The Bobs – Full, Uncut Version
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PT5kzbnQPbg

    Walking Dead Meets Office Space – wish this had actual office space printer smashing footage
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uYAaIOB11yw

  11. Ender
    April 13, 2014 at 11:21 am

    Just a quick aside and nothing to do with this article…. I’m so proud of what happened at Bundy Ranch yesterday… The government blinked, it’s been a while since the plebes had even a small victory such as that.

    • Linda
      April 13, 2014 at 4:39 pm

      Let the media step back……………..
      and then watch out for the POW! Right in the kisser.

      Think gov.com has a heart?

      Not a chance.

      gov.com is just pulling back momentarily for the real siege.

  12. JoePA
    April 13, 2014 at 8:22 am

    GM, Chevy, Ford….etc. All garbage and people already know it. People only purchase that crap when they get a “bargain” and boy do they. I tell people to shut up when their “American” cars fall apart. Its like my Harley……if you purchase a turd, expect it to act like a turd, I was not let down…..lol

    • liberranter
      April 13, 2014 at 7:31 pm

      My father (God rest his soul) epitomized that mindset. He would never even consider buying a foreign made car, even as it became obvious with each new (or “gently used”) domestic “turd” he bought that quality control wasn’t even a concern for The Big Three Stooges. He spent much of his spare time in the garage trying to keep his turds in drivable condition (this was in the 60s and 70s when DIY mechanics was still possible), but nothing ever turned out to be more than a stop-gap fix; the sub-par engineering of the cars themselves precluded any lasting repairs (oh, and Dad loved Chryslers. Go figure).

      I’ll never forget his displeasure when I bought my first brand new car, an ’85 Honda Civic Standard. I was, at that point, a “traitor” for buying Japanese. I told him “let’s wait a year and see how much time my Honda has in the shop compared to your Chrysler in the garage. Then we’ll revisit that traitor remark.”

      It was the last time he ever brought up the subject.

      • Bryce
        April 14, 2014 at 10:53 am

        In our family, it was Fords vs. VWs. Even though our VW Rabbit diesel was made in Greensburg, PA instead of Wolfsburg, Germany, the VW held up so much better that its garage-mate Ford LTD.

        • liberranter
          April 14, 2014 at 2:33 pm

          Ah yes, the LTD. My first car right out of high school was a 1970 Fort LTD. Decent enough to get me from Point A to Point B, but, as Fords of that generation were wont to do, the thing went through two starter motors in the three years I owned it.

  13. April 13, 2014 at 2:33 am

    Ich hatte Recht – der ewige reich

    tribute to Adolf Hitler
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBhWsDGTimI

    mein Herz wird weitergehen My heart will go on
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H3qF1e2nvfY

    I still cry – The true Adolf Hitler
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wxe2xdA85c

    Yiddish-Anarchist song – Hey, hey, daloy politsey – Down with the Police
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ft9iuZu0AI

    Yiddish Anarchist revolutionary anthem –
    wie lang o wie lang
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FQ3CA0K76N4

    Fuck the British Army
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NscSGuqr2QU

  14. Werner
    April 12, 2014 at 4:37 pm

    http://www.naturalcuresnotmedicine.com/2014/03/3084.html

    More than 60% of Americans drinking water has this neurotoxin added via their city’s water supply. Perhaps it has some long term effects?

    The USA is the most heavily fluoridated country on the planet, only 5% of the world’s population is subjected to this method of mass medication.

    GM may move its headquarters to China, where the stuff has been banned outright and do business from there, exporting wheels.

    • Werner
      April 12, 2014 at 9:38 pm
    • April 12, 2014 at 11:42 pm

      A meta-analysis of 27 cross-sectional studies of children exposed to fluoride in drinking water, mainly from China, suggests an average IQ decrement of about seven points in children exposed to raised fluoride concentrations.

      Confounding from other substances seemed unlikely in most of these studies. Further characterization of the dose—response association would be desirable.

      Our very great concern is that children worldwide are being exposed to unrecognized toxic chemicals that are silently eroding intelligence, disrupting behaviors, truncating future achievements, and damaging societies, perhaps most seriously in developing countries. A new framework of action is needed.

      • Helot
        April 13, 2014 at 2:05 am

        “children worldwide are being exposed to unrecognized toxic chemicals that are silently eroding intelligence, disrupting behaviors, truncating future achievements, and damaging societies, perhaps most seriously in developing countries.”

        The plan is going according to schedule.
        Parents are ok with this and pay no mind to it all.
        In fact, it’s the best of plans, parents fight to continue the mass poisoning of their children.
        We really Do live in an insane culture of death.

        • April 13, 2014 at 4:35 am

          People are delusional like John Nash in A Beautiful Mind.

          They solemnly accept their mission from Parcher.
          Their fondest memories are the times spent with their roommate Charles.
          They’re very fond of their sweet young niece.
          They see their struggle with the enemy’s spies and secret plans as a noble struggle.

          Parcher Recruits Nash (Nash’s hallucination)
          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PMtkv1zgi8o

          Nash’s friends were all delusions.
          http://www.complex.com/pop-culture/2012/04/the-50-best-movie-twists/a-beautiful-mind

          Charles Isn’t There (Nash’s Paranoia)
          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GvF4-C1EuJU

          But the thing is, none of those characters are real. None of that really happened. They are interacting with decepticon actors whose purpose is to control their minds. All of their memories regarding government and other institutions are false.

          They are tragic and usually incurable lunatics, incapable of distinguishing natural world reality from scripted political fantasy.

          To combat this, spend some time working with your hands. Be fully present whilst turning a wrench or a steering wheel and fully observe the complex interaction of man and machine.

          Read Eric’s articles. Listen to Larken Rose, Stefan Molyneux, and Chris Cantwell without any distractions. Teach yourself how to recognize the entire political machinery as an enslaving delusion.

          Don’t be a fluoridated schizophrenic who plays along. Know the difference between a real machine you can touch, and an imagined fictional machine that is only a phantom.

          There are real devices in your homes that you can touch. And there are delusions that play on these devices and exist only in your imagination.

          Psychological Delusion and Imagined Interactions
          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yqj1DhUKJco
          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O3qyC6Z3t5g

          Give thanks to the real people and voluntary parts of your life and ignore the false people as best you can
          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H7Y_mHNgnpA
          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-WEHDU-Plys

        • Werner
          April 13, 2014 at 10:03 am

          All Canadian Forces Bases went fluoride free in 2008. New Brunswick has only one small town left where the tap water comes with fluoridated water. Quebec has stopped all water fluoridation. British Columbia is 93% fluoridation free. Canada has less than 30% of its still citizens drinking the stuff.

          10% of Canadian children have Dental Fluorosis caused by fluoride poisoning. In the USA about 65% of the population ingests the poison, in some areas Dental Fluorosis is over 30%.

          The industrial type (non-pharmaceutical grade) is an effluent by-product of the phosphate fertilizer industry. If they vent it in the air, put it in the lake or river or on the ground it is a poison! When they put it in our drinking water it becomes a medicine!

          It is a miracle!

  15. BrentP
    April 12, 2014 at 3:57 pm

    The press distorts things and has no idea of product development processes.

    One thing they keep doing is saying there was a revision without a part number change. This is meaningless unless we know in detail how GM’s engineering documentation works. Is the press referring to a service part number or an engineering part number? Does GM use a changing part number system or a drawing/spec revision system?

    That’s just one example of the things that the political and media types have been doing that doesn’t mean anything without a lot more information.

    I’ll withhold my judgment until I can read the original reports, memos, warranty claims, emails, etc.

    • clover
      April 13, 2014 at 4:02 pm

      Wow. I actually agree with Brent for once and least partially. Yes the press gets things distorted tremendously. Just like the recent Moore OK. incident. They were saying there were beatings, pummeling, gang tackles, beating on a dead man and dog piles. All of which were things that were made up. People believed it though and spread it with even larger exaggerations. Clover

      The thing I question is why the posters here say this GM problem is the fault of the government? Does it come down to everything is the fault of the government in their minds? If they do not want any government involvement in anything then why would this be blamed on the government? Man that is a stre———–tch.

  16. Brandonjin
    April 12, 2014 at 3:50 pm

    I hope you’re right about GM actually going down this time. That would give me some confidence in free market economics.

    I don’t think they will though. There are enough idiots out there who blindly buy GM just because they’re GM. It’s simply natural selection in progress. GM will not change, and they will continue to cut 57 cents here, 57 cents there, ect. More of their customers will die, cycle continues.
    Also, Mary Barra has been working with GM since 1980, I doubt her hands are clean.

    If they did go under again, it would be awesome if Ford acquired Cadillac.

    • Garysco
      April 12, 2014 at 5:03 pm

      Oh please not Ford. I don’t want another Jaguar tured Crown Vic / Merc clone.

  17. MikePizzo
    April 12, 2014 at 3:31 pm

    With further thought, there may be two other potential take over corporations.

    Volkswagen. But don’t think they’d want to.

    Kia/Hyundai. But their perceived quality probably is not reassuring enough to resurrect a company with that very same problem.

  18. M ikePizzo
    April 12, 2014 at 2:17 pm

    Quoting Eric….”It is not a stretch to state that probably millions of people now believe that GM is capable of almost any form of skullduggery.”

    And they are right! GM deserves to die. Hate to see the thousands of GM wage owners, who had nothing to do with this atrocity, lose their jobs. Including the dealerships, whether you like them or not.

    Don’t think “spinning off” the various brands will work very well. Too much chassis, engine and transmission technology, all coming out of one common R&D facility. Without that corporate synergy, the individual brands will wither and die within one or two new model cycles.

    Just like Chrysler, GM will need to be absorbed by some global automaker. If/when that happens, EVERYONE in GM executive positions must immediately be fired. (Even poor Mary, who is only trying to clean up something she inherited.)

    I don’t think Daimler is going to want to take another shot at this sort of thing. And they’re probably the only European big enough to do so.

    Toyota seems like the best fit. A lot of model overlapping…much of which would need to be pruned. But I think there would be a place for the full sized Suburbans and Tahoes. And having Vettes and Camaros in it’s showrooms could really improve Toyota’s “stodgy” image.

  19. Gasrysco
    April 12, 2014 at 1:38 pm

    Socialist government proponents are always asking who would protect the people, build their roads, and generally look out for the ignorant if not for well meaning government bureaucrats? I offer GM as a glaring example of why government can’t do any of those things efficiently or well. Books full of laws, rules, mandatory specifications, negotiations, unions on & on for years, and at a huge add-on cost to GM customers. It is the free market and civil courts that will settle the disaster that was brought on by a shabby corporate decision making, not the army of useless government meddlers.

    In fact didn’t Uncle Sam sell our (working tax payer forced purchased) GM stock at a 10 billion dollar loss just before this latest news hit the fan? Uh huh. Didn’t Uncle Sam let the perpetrators off the hook, but stuff-it to the investors who were due their recompense, then fatly reward their crony industry unionized friends? All in an effort to protect “us” from the greedy businessmen right? Cui bono comrades.

    • Bevin
      April 12, 2014 at 8:13 pm

      Dear Gary,

      Exactly right.

      Lower echelon coercive egalitarians reflexively argue that libertarianism and market anarchism would “leave the ordinary man at the mercy of greedy corporations.”

      They argue that a “big and powerful government” would act as a knight errant and protect the widows and orphans from the “greedy corporations.”

      They never seem to get it through their thick skulls that “greedy corporations” would not even exist without “big and powerful government.”

      They never seem to get it through their thick skulls that “greedy corporations” are creatures of the very same “big and powerful government” they fantasize would ride to our rescue.

      GM is one example. But the clearest example of this is the Federal Reserve System, the “Creature from Jekyll Island,” a “greedy corporation” created by the globalist Banksters by means of “big and powerful government” to enable them to engage in legalized counterfeiting.

      They never seem to get it through their thick skulls that a government big enough to give you everything you want is a government big enough to take from you everything you have.

  20. Randy
    April 12, 2014 at 11:19 am

    This has been evolving for many years. The arrogant “we know better than you” attitude, the refusal to correct widely known defects, the downright disdain for their paying customers, are all GM hallmarks that started 50+ years ago. Because of the size of GM and it’s loyal customer base, it took a whole generation for the once great corporation to implode.
    This phenomena is not unique to GM. I have had personal dealings with other large American corporations having similar self-destructing cultures. Top heavy, arrogant, over-educated management, without a trace of real world common sense experience, are ruining more American companies than most people realize.
    It’s no wonder that foreign companies are gaining dominance over many market segments.
    The sad thing is that the sociopathic pinheads responsible for this ride their golden parachutes into the sunset, while the employees, customers, stockholders and economy suffer devastating consequences.

    • Frank
      April 13, 2014 at 10:25 am

      Randy,

      Your response describes exactly what is occurring with the government of the United States as well.

    • liberranter
      April 13, 2014 at 7:01 pm

      over-educated management

      Over-educated and INCOMPETENT. All over corporate Amerika, daily operations are under the control of arrogant, clueless hacks who not only can’t so much as spell either of the words “leadership” or “management,” but who are devoid of human interaction skills, are ignorant of their companies’ products, and overtly contemptuous of both their employees and their customers. The train wreck of a firm for which I’ve worked for the last 15 years is on this trajectory, as is nearly every one of its major competitors that I’m familiar with. It’s absolutely not unique to the auto industry.

      Oh, and PLEASE shut down “Business Schools” at colleges and universities and do away forthwith with the MBA as a graduate degree. Next to schools of and degrees in “Education,” these have done more lasting and irreversible damage to the country’s socioeconomic institutions than anything else I can think of.

    • Garysco
      April 14, 2014 at 3:42 am

      I’m on board with that. I have seen this coming for years too. Ever since the 6-12 month job hopping culture thought a desktop computer and some MBA classes at National University would be a shortcut to quality job knowledge and company success.

      A few years ago I attended a wedding reception in a very posh area of San Diego (Scripps Ranch) at the home of the Bumble Bee tuna CEO. Over drinks he told me his story. When he was brought in Bumble Bee was failing & on the verge of bankruptcy. He determined that the main problem was that they were not producing enough cans per hour to cover costs. He then went out to the production floor and asked the workers what they thought was wrong. A blue collar guy running the canning machines told him that with some minor changes increasing production was no big deal. He asked the workers why they were not doing those things. They told him about the work rules and policies that were laid out by the suits. He then went back up to the corporate suite of offices and informed the suits they had been demoted to the least important people in the organization, and that henceforth the corporate pyramid was inverted. The rest is history.

  21. MikeFromWichita
    April 12, 2014 at 10:52 am

    Eric- if you are sooooo very sure of GM’s future you should be able to make major $$$$ shorting GM stock. Put your money where your opinion is and then tell us how that worked out, K.

    • eric
      April 12, 2014 at 11:13 am

      I don’t play the stock market, Mike.

      Just calling ‘em as I see ‘em.

      My opinion is based on my 20-plus years as an automotive journalist.

      This is bad news, amigo.

      • MikeFromWichita
        April 13, 2014 at 11:43 am

        Thats fine you are of course entitled to your expert opinion. It will be fun to point out in a year how truly wrong that opinion has turned out to be.

        • April 13, 2014 at 2:57 pm

          CloverWell Mike I am an investor. I have not been following GM though. I really doubt if this is going to have a huge affect for the company. Every car manufacturer has gone through something similar to this. The most recent one was the Tesla fires. Before that was the stuck accelerators, the rollover problem due to bad tires and the Pinto fires. Something that was done over 7 years ago I doubt is going to have a long lasting affect. I have not been spending a lot of time watching the events of this story but from what I have heard about this there was no one that I know of that said this was going to cause many deaths or that there was a very serious problem that was not handled. If someone has heard differently let me know.

      • ozymandias
        April 13, 2014 at 3:00 pm

        http://www.fooledbyrandomness.com/FatTails.html
        & click the link (its to the abstract, not the whole paper/book)

        however unlikely the possibility, it’d be interesting to have taleb filter-monitor your gm expectations. maybe you could talk him into consulting. his “cosmopolitanism” has some libertarian facets. f***you $, as he’s scooped a couple times, pays for his ‘scholar at large’ passion. it’d be cool symmetry if catching some gse gm implosion option profits (& what about tesla?) paid for yours.

    • BrentP
      May 1, 2014 at 11:22 pm

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *