The Alabama Moderate

Painting the Red State Purple.

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Here’s How to Fix the Detroit Mess

Posted by ALmod on December 21, 2008

1. Cars won’t sell– particularly gas guzzlers.  Focus on your other products to keep yourself afloat. Defense contracts are big business these days, but there’s still plenty of potential in the civilian consumer.  The husband and I came up with a wonderful idea the other day.  Most sane people can’t afford to (and therefore won’t) replace their cars when gas prices fluctuate to an all-time high.  So why not produce and sell “converter kits” that will improve the gas mileage of your existing “American-made” (though partially Chinese-made) Big 3 vehicle?  I’m not an engineer, but you’ve got them.  You can even build to order for less expense!  Custom made by the manufacturer for YOUR model!  And require that they be installed by a dealership.  While they’ll sell for less, they will sell.  I’d buy one for all of my family’s many Ford vehicles.  And the smart folks who want better gas mileage aren’t converting to Toyota owners.  Survivability in today’s economy requires that you be more than a one-trick pony.

2. When cars DO sell, sell better cars. Duh!  It’s not like you don’t know how to make them.  You’ve been selling them in Europe for years.  Sell them here.  We’ll buy them.  I loved my American Focus so much that I bought a second one.  My husband and I laughed our way out of the gas station when we paid $40/tank next to the guy in the Hummer.  He also happens to be a Mustang fanatic.  He cried when I made him get rid of his last one because it wasn’t practical for a child seat situation, and he’s counting the days until he can purchase a new one.  But now we’re considering special ordering a model from Europe to replace our cars.  Don’t make us do that.

3. Drop your lawsuits against state governments regarding their environmental laws. I’m not exactly inclined to help you out when you’re not planning on making any positive changes– particularly changes that would help your image in the consumer’s eyes and (oh, I dunno…) make them want to buy your cars.

4. Clean up your management. The final straw for Ford was when they quit listening to the Fords– as in the decedents of the man who started the company.  The guys in charge are now more interested in a quick buck  than the time-tested success strategy of providing quality and a product that people want.  (If you can’t beat someone on price, then kick their collective asses on quality.)  Your management has done you no favors.  Quit paying them so damn much and then blaming your problems on your average workers and the unions who make sure you pay them a fair wage.  “In Britain, the average CEO makes 28 times what their average employee makes. In Japan, it’s only 17 times! The last I heard, the CEO of Toyota was living the high life in Tokyo. How does he do it on so little money? Seriously, this is an outrage. We have created the mess we’re in by letting the people at the top become bloated beyond belief with millions of dollars. This has to stop. Not only should no executive who receives help out of this mess profit from it, but any executive who was in charge of running his company into the ground should be fired before the company receives any help.”

5. If you’re too big to fail, then you’re too big to exist. “When you have a dozen auto companies, if one goes belly-up, we don’t face a national disaster…  Laws must be enacted to prevent companies from being so large and dominant that with one slingshot to the eye, the giant falls and dies.”

Now a note to Mr. Joe Babiasz, a retired GM worker in Michigan:  I know you’re scared. I know you’re angry.  But blaming the good people of Alabama because our idiot senator is running his mouth is absolutely NOT the way to go about this.  In fact it could backfire– BIG TIME!

Remember when Detroit lost that huge contract to Birmingham and then started mouthing off (incorrectly) about how our workers had to use manuals with pictures because they couldn’t read the words?  It doesn’t look like that strategy worked out too well for you guys back then, either.  The redneck jokes from Detroit are getting old, and it makes us a little slow to sympathize with your plight no matter how much we can’t stand Sen. Shelby– who hasn’t had any viable contest to his senate seat in a very long time.  (Trust me when I say it could be MUCH worse.)  And we don’t harp on the fact that you have even us poor rednecks in Birmingham beat on the murder rate.

As I stated above, we own several Ford vehicles.  That could change.  I’m sure I could also do without purchasing the latest Eminem albumn or Michael Moore book. I mean… You know…  Those guys never really offended the folks in Alabama or me personally, but punishing everyone in Michigan for the ill deeds of one man who happens to be from that state and decides to speak for that state is a good idea, right?

And if any of you in Michigan have any issues with what I suggested above, keep in mind that a good portion of it was copied and pasted from Michael Moore— a Flint, Michigan native.  At the time, he was referring to the $700 billion bailout of the financial industry, but I feel that the same sentiment applies here.  I hope he still agrees with himself.  If not, I hope he will please forgive this poor, inbred hillbilly for not having the cognitive capability to understand his fine reasoning.

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