cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner
Given all the hoopla yesterday concerning GM's "bankruptcy", I found myself wondering about Ford Motor Company. Of the former "Big 3", two have been put into bankruptcy. Chrysler is nearing its emergence from that process with Fiat as its new owner.
Where does all this leave Ford, the only company that wasn't interested in a politically-tinged bailout.
Ford is apparently making very solid vehicles today that have some style about them. They were solid enough, even in the current downturn, as to be able to walk away from government money, apparently recognizing the strings that were attached to those dollars.
But, what of the future? Will the UAW deals with GM and Chrysler be so much better than the current contract with Ford that Ford will be made uncompetitive? Will Ford see the need to reduce the number of retail dealers for its products as have both GM and Chrysler?
Has the government effectively put Ford out of business by favoring the two companies that took government money? If so, was this purely an accident, or was it something that government understood from day one? Was it a mistake by Ford to snub President Obama and the Democrat Congress? Should it have taken money simply to remain in the game?
And what about the consumers? Will us consumers deal with Ford based on their style and quality while we let GM and Chrysler twist in the wind? Will the government force Ford, as well as the "little two" , to change the vehicles that it is producing by heaping bigger and bigger CAFÉ mileage averages on them, by forcing the production of smaller "cracker boxes"?
Nothing good seems ever to have come from such a massive government intervention in the private sector...if ever there has been such intervention on such a scale before, barring the World War II control by government over the entire country and its industry.
I hope that Ford is able to survive and I hope it proves that it knew better...but it has a real uphill battle if that is to occur. This will be a telling two or three years leading to the next presidential election. Obama had better hope that he knows what he is doing, or he could find himself back organizing for ACORN...with which it appears he may still be involved.
The Curmudgeon Blog today is titled "The United States of Europe"