It’s too Late to be Salty

Oh the auto industry, the auto industry, the auto industry. When AIG executives had a lavish retreat at a California resort days after they received our tax money nothing happened. Automotive executives fly to congressional hearings in private planes and everyone’s up in arms. If the automotive industry fails it is not the CEO’s who would hurt.

Was this Henry Ford’s vision? Innovation replaced with corporatism? As the 2006 documentary was so aptly entitled “Who Killed the Electric Car?”

If you have read any of my past blogs you know I not one to belabor a point, so here is the crux of the issue. I know most people like me feel duped by the passing of the October 1st bank bail out package. However, I implore you to realize that the auto industry package is different from that debacle. The failure of the American auto industry will affect at least ten percent of workers in the United States. The auto industry accounts for five percent of the United States gross domestic product and sixteen percent of all durable goods shipments.

Understand that the effect of a failed automotive industry would extend far beyond Detroit. Do not forget the suppliers, the American factory workers and the Mexican factory workers. Can Mexico with stand another failed business within its boarders?

In 2007 Toyota’s Camry retailing at about $16,000 was the number one selling car in America. In 2008 the Honda Civic retailing at about $15,500 was the number one selling car in the country. What would happen to the price of these foreign cars in the United States if they had no competition from Ford, GM or Chrysler?

It is too late to reconcile what has happened with the banking industry but being angry with the automotive companies will not solve that problem.


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