August 29, 2008

After building sh*tty, ugly, break-down-prone gas-guzzling cars for decades, GM's Chairman wants $50 billion from the US taxpayer


HousingPANIC's message for overpaid and visionless GM Chairman Lutz:

Go away.

You and your crappy company (and your lobbyists) are no longer needed. Real car companies with good designers and smart management build cars people want. They've been doing it for decades. You don't, and thus you should learn to compete on your own, or go away.

Thanks for playing.


GM's Lutz calls for $50 billion in government-backed loans

LONDON (MarketWatch) -- General Motors Vice Chairman Robert Lutz was quoted by The New York Times as saying automakers deserve up to $50 billion in government-backed loans to build more fuel-efficient cars.

Lutz told reporters in an event near Chicago that the American auto industry is deserving of government loan guarantees to retool plants. The automakers and the UAW are urging Congress to appropriate $3.75 billion to back $25 billion in loans authorized last year

44 comments:

Anonymous said...

From Robin Hood:
Sir Guy: "You've come to Nottingham once too often my friend".
Robin Hood: "They'll be no need to come again Sir Guy".

Right! GM thinks they deserve the loan. (Is this for the "ransom"? You know, to bring fuel efficient cars to merry old America?)

Malcolm said...

I disagree with your comment about the quality of GM cars.

I’ve driven GM’s for years, and found them to be quite reliable.

We had a 1977 Cutlass that could still rip the pavement at 150,000 miles.

I’ve had Buick’s and Cadillac’s and Chevy’s and Oldsmobile’s and every one of them have been a solid, reliable car.

As far as a loan goes, that is not without precedent. We loaned money to Chrysler when they were in trouble. Every dollar was paid back and the country benefited from the company staying in business.

SUNNY YUNNY said...

NUMBER ONE SONG IN AMERICA?

I KISSED A GIRL AND I LIKED IT!!!

YAWN...

LOSING YOUR BIGGEST AUTO MANUFACTURER IS NOTHING... LOVE IS IN THE AIR... THE MESSIAH IS GONNA BE PRESIDENT...

IT'S A NEW PARADIGM... WE'RE ALL GONNA BE RICH AGAIN SOON... THE BABY BOOMERS ARE LEAVING THEIR NURSING HOMES EVERYDAY TO BUY WHAT BOB TOLL BUILDS... EVERYBODY WANTS TEN OF THEM...

AGENTS OF CHANGE? WE'RE SENDING ONE TO THE WHITE HOUSE!!!

SORRY AND GOODBYE GM FUKTARDS... ALL OF US SHILLS IN THE REIC SPENT ALL THE BAILOUT MONEY ALREADY!

DOPES!!!

big balls said...

Bring back the yugo.They ae so screwed.

Anonymous said...

US automaker DESERVE nothing.

Re-read "Iacocca" to learn wat it took just to get a loan GUARANTEE.

Then, the clueless, assholes in government didn't even know HOW to negotiate the early repayment check from Chrysler when they tried to repay their guaranteed loan, WITH interest, years early.

That is because up to that time nobody had EVER repaid theUS government loan guarantee. Sounds like a BUSH/GOP run program to me. Maybe the Keating-McCain five were the administrators?

As for GM, I hope you go BK and sell out to the Chinese. You are and have been one of America biggest failures consistently for 40 years.

You deserve to DIE, GM. No sympathy, No help, No nothing.

GM = junk said...

"Malcolm said...
I disagree with your comment about the quality of GM cars.
I’ve driven GM’s for years, and found them to be quite reliable."

Not Me.

Last one I was forced by circumstances to drive (a rental, I wouldn't own any of that shit)was a Beretta which had 27 miles on it when I got it that literally had the drivers door FALL OFF at the Pike Market in Seattle. That is when I locked the keys in the trunk and called Hertz to come get that piece of shit and I took a cab (a Ford crown vic ex-cop car with about a billion miles on it which rode great).

As far as I know, it is still there and being taken back into the food chain.

GM = Junk. Avoid GM products like an AIDS victim for a sex partner..

SeattleMoose said...

Free market capitalism dictates that poorly run and inefficient businesses (like GM) should fail. We all learned that in Econ 101 in college. The rule applies, but evidently only to "little people".

In the U.S. poorly run "big" businesses are not only bailed out, the decisions to do so are made by a privately run institution (the FED) who use OUR public tax money to do so. Must be nice to be able to bail out your friends using someone else's money.

We can't even vote the FED out of office because they are not elected nor even part of our government. The FED is owned by parasitical European banking interests (e.g. Bank of England).

In 1776 we broke free but in 1913 "order was restored" when a coup by foreign interests created "the FED" and paid our elected officials to hand over financial control of this country to the private organization known as the "Federal Reserve". The name was carefully crafted to give the illusion that the U.S. monetary system was still part of the U.S. government. It is not.

And since then the whole system has been boom/bust/war with the puppeteers profiting on the way up, the way down, and in between.

"Give me control of a nation's money and I care not who makes it's laws." - Mayer Amschel Bauer Rothschild

Anonymous said...

Socialism for the big corporations and their CEO's. The rest of you folks better learn how to suck eggs.

Nothing ever changes in America, where the same Plutocrats own both parties.

Loving that Bush.

Veronica Lodge said...

RE: GM's $50 billiion handout...

At one point GM had become the largest corporation registered in the United States, in terms of its revenues as a percent of GDP. In 1953, Charles Erwin Wilson, then GM president, was named by Eisenhower as Secretary of Defense.

When he was asked during the hearings before the Senate Armed Services Committee if as secretary of defense he could make a decision adverse to the interests of General Motors, Wilson answered affirmatively but added that he could not conceive of such a situation "because for years I thought what was good for the country was good for General Motors and vice versa".

In other words, GM will get the $50 billion and much more. After all, somebody has to build the tanks, Humvees and other war-related vehicles that will be needed for upcoming illegal US invasions.

As always, GM will remain an important part of the Military-Industrial Complex.

V.L.

pika said...

I've driven a Chevy Suburban (married with five kids) for 3 years and although I agree GM should not be given any taxpayer money, I disagree with Keith's comment that stated "After building sh*tty, ugly, break-down-prone...". My Suburban has over 70,000 miles and I've had two very minor issues that were both fixed while the vehicle was under warranty. The Suburban is a great vehicle for large families; yes, the low gas mileage is expensive, but I wouldn't trade this vehicle for anything...it's been worth every penny as far as I'm concerned.

Anonymous said...

We purchased two BRAND NEW GM made cars around the same time in 2004. We are fanatical about auto maintenance and are always on schedule or well ahead of it with routine things like tire rotation, oil changes, etc. Logic would say that if GM knew anything about building cars both of my cars should have never had any real problems develop between the time we purchased them and the time we finally got rid of them in 2006 but the reality is very different:

Both cars needed the dash console (speedometer, temp, fuel) replaced in the first 8 months. Both needed a new alternator before the end of the first year. One had a faulty door switch pack for the power windows/locks.

With that type of junk being sold at inflated prices, why on earth would anyone give them taxpayer money to save them from their own creation?

Anonymous said...

The Joe/Jane Six Pack weighs in...

"The Suburban is a great vehicle for large families; yes, the low gas mileage is expensive, but I wouldn't trade this vehicle for anything...it's been worth every penny as far as I'm concerned."

Just right for getting the gang together for NASCAR.They forgot to specify what year their tank is as Chevy has been making this model since 1937! Noe THAT'S progress. When the McMansion is foreclosed on they can sleep in the back too.

For more on GM, read Rivethead, tales from the assembly line by Ben Hamper. Or Not.

IDIOT, Not DOPES!

dudelero said...

i also disagree with your sentiment towards GMs quality. They have consistently improved their reliability scores and are now beating toyota in some segments. theyir new vehicles are also class leading (Malibu, CTS, Enclave).
also remember that toyota pushed very hard to get a piece of the SUV pie, but somehow they get a pass for their 4runners, highlanders, rebadged lexuses etc.
Finally, both Toyota and also german manufacturers get massive subsidies. yes, GM did make a lot of junk back in the day, but they have turned around from a product standpoint. they are in trouble because they pay their employees more and take care of their healthcare which somehow is evil in your eyes.

pika said...

Anon,

My Chevy Suburban is a 2003 model; I bought it new and its paid off as of three months ago. I don't live in a "McMansion"; actually my house is 25 years old and will be paid off in ten years (I have $103K left on 15-year fixed mortgage I took out in 2003). I am not a Nascar fan, although I do enjoy both college and NFL football.

I get the impression that most of the contributors to this blog are twenty-somethings with low-to-average incomes, mostly single, and who, in the aggregate, have not graduated with a college degree. I may be wrong, but I doubt it.

As I said before, I don't believe GM is entitled to a taxpayer bailout, but for the most part, their mid-to-higher end vehicles perform quite well when compared to their Asian & European competitors.

Anonymous said...

"...In 1776 we broke free but in 1913 "order was restored"..."

VERY well-put, Sir.

Anonymous said...

.


The only reason why people buy Toyota or any other Asian vehicle is They don't know any better!

Their great little cars....for the first 3 to 5 years.

But, in the long run, they don't last!

When was the last time you saw a 10, 15 or 20 year old Toyota, or Datsun, Mazda...

Yes, their out there, just not that many!

I and several other I know have 12 to 60 year old Chevy Trucks!

The Newly manufactured Chev's, GMC's are not to that standard but not to bad.


.
.

Malcolm said...

>They forgot to specify what year
>their tank is as Chevy has been
>making this model since 1937!

In my case, my most recent 3 cars:

2000 Buick LeSabre
2003 Buick Century
2006 Cadillac CTS

All three were great cars.

Besides... I'm done buying foreign cars. I know it's a little thing (when you consider that everything else we buy is foreign-made), but I'd like to keep the money and jobs in the US

Edgar Alpo said...

they need $50B for executive bonuses

Anonymous said...

79 Mazdz Rx-7 (20,000 past the half way point of the first production run), 189,000 miles - it is on its second motor but it is a tank, even when the first motor died (#2 rotor seal went) It ran enough to get to the dealer two miles from where it died. That was interesting, it wouldn't idle slower than 2k and I had to rev it to about 6k to get it to move in 1st gear but it still moved. It was my daily driver until 10 years ago. Now it is a weekend car and backup to my current daily driver.

No computer, no power steering, no airbag, no ABS, no problem... All fun. :)

GM DESERVES TO DIE SOON said...

Dear posters:
Malcolm, pika, dudelero and anon:

Here's a little news from today about the car company you and your family are trusting with your lives and driving in and you are defending:

GM recalling nearly 1 million vehicles over fire danger
Associated Press
Article Launched: 08/29/2008 08:52:52 AM PDT

WASHINGTON — General Motors is recalling 944,000 vehicles because of a problem with the windshield wiper fluid system that could lead to a fire.

The recall involves more than 850,000 sport utility vehicles, trucks and passenger cars in the U.S. and nearly 100,000 vehicles in Canada, Mexico and the Middle East.

It involves the 2008 Buick Enclave, 2006-2008 Buick Lucerne, 2006-2008 Cadillac DTS, versions of the 2007-2008 Cadillac Escalade, 2007-2008 Chevrolet Avalanche, Silverado, Tahoe and Suburban, 2007-2008 GMC Acadia, Sierra, Yukon and Yukon XL, 2006-2008 Hummer H2 and 2007-2008 Saturn Outlook.

The recall involves vehicles with a heated washer fluid system. A short circuit in the system could cause electrical features to malfunction. There have been nine reports of fires.

WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO SAY ABOUT GM QUALITY NOW? I DO NOT RECALL ANY TOYOTA OR HONDAS WITH NINE REPORTS OF FIRES!

GM WILL GO BANKRUPT SOON BUT DO NOT WORRY. THE CHINESE WILL KNOCK OFF REPLACEMENT PARTS SO YOU CAN KEEP YOUR PIECE OF SHIT ON THE ROAD.

DIE GM. YOU DESERVE IT.

GUTLESS AND LAZY KNOWS BETTER said...

When was the last time you saw a 10, 15 or 20 year old Toyota, or Datsun, Mazda...




I HAVE A 1996 MAZDA MIATA WITH 217,000 MILES ON IT. BOUGHT IT BRAND NEW. I DID EVERY SUGGESTED MAINT. BY MAZDA. I HAD TO PUT A NEW "ROBBINS" RAG TOP ON THO. NEW ROTORS & BRAKE PADS TWICE (I DID IT MYSELF). I HAD TO GET THE DRIVERS ELECTRIC WINDOW FIXED ONCE - THAT'S IT. 217K AND IT STILL RUNS LIKE A TOP. ORIGINAL CLUTCH, ORIGINAL EXHAUST SYSTEM. THE "MONTEGO BLUE" PAINT STILL LOOKS GREAT. SUCK ON IT GM, NO WELFARE FOR YOU.

Anonymous said...

The greatest victory corporate America has had over the American worker and people is to devilishly get us to ridicule American products en-masse so they can offshore jobs without a fight. Mission accomplished.

Break-down-prone? Gas guzzling? Wow! Totally wrong of course. I have a Buick Rendezvous it gets the 2nd best mileage of any 7seater SUV available (1st was a lot more money). 116k miles and has never, never, never broke down. Has never even spent a minute in the shop (other than maintenance of course)! Plus it looks good, was resonably priced and rides great! SH*t, just how reliable do American cars have to get before people stop this non-sense?

I've owned Japanese cars and German cars. All have good models, all have not-so good models. Check recall figures and you will find American cars are doing great.

My next car is going to be another Buick!

GT Charlie

sundry vermin said...

Keith, what do you or I or any HPer really KNOW about the economy? Let's let a real expert like Suzanne research this first.

CrabbiePatties said...

Thanks for bringing this up Keith. I've followed the auto industry for many decades and I knew it was just a matter of time before one of the big three went belly up. A gubmint bailout at this point would be complete bullsh*t. They've had 30 years to build competitive cars but they've milked the suv/truck teat for all it's worth. This is the 1970's all over again.

Frank@Scottsdale-Sucks.com said...

The first thing they need to do is disband and outlaw the unions. Unions are the reason American cars are now so overpriced for such poor quality.

Unions gave foreign cars the advantage and that advantage won't return unless and until the unions are done away with.

Under Obama though they will just get more power and more pay for less work so kiss the big three US automakers goodbye.

Malcolm said...

GM Deserves to Die Soon said…
> THE CHINESE WILL KNOCK OFF REPLACEMENT
> PARTS SO YOU CAN KEEP YOUR PIECE OF SHIT ON THE ROAD.
> DIE GM. YOU DESERVE IT.


So let me see if I understand this….

You want around 284,000 people to lose their jobs.

You want hundreds of supplier companies with unknown numbers of employees to shut down.

You want to exasperate the economic crisis, increasing home foreclosures and putting dozens of municipalities in economic trouble. For what again?

So you can be “right” on a blog comment? Because you nose is out of joint? Because you didn’t like a car you owned once?

Its fine to have an opinion about something, everyone has the right to their opinions. But to call on and wish for the destruction of nearly 300,000 of your fellow citizens is just pathetic.

lemko said...

Ask the man who actually owns a GM car - or four! I have four GM cars in my family and am extremely happy with them: 1988 Buick Parl Avenue, 1989 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham, 2005 Buick LaCrosse, and a 2007 Cadillac DTS Performance.

My first car was a 1968 Buick Special Deluxe that was still running in 1992. I am extremely picky about my cars. A burned-out bulb drives me bananas. Why would I put up with serious defects?

Anonymous said...

No Way!

socialize the liabilities said...

Retool plants?

No way.

The bailout money will be used to shore up their severely under-funded pension plans.

GM Sucks said...

"i also disagree with your sentiment towards GMs quality. They have consistently improved their reliability scores and are now beating toyota in some segments. theyir new vehicles are also class leading (Malibu, CTS, Enclave).
also remember that toyota pushed very hard to get a piece of the SUV pie, but somehow they get a pass for their 4runners, highlanders, rebadged lexuses etc.
Finally, both Toyota and also german manufacturers get massive subsidies. yes, GM did make a lot of junk back in the day, but they have turned around from a product standpoint. they are in trouble because they pay their employees more and take care of their healthcare which somehow is evil in your eyes."

As far as the Toyota 4runner, I own one I bought new in 1998, it now has 180000 miles on it. NEVER had to replace anything that was not normal wear and tear item (front brakes, tires, oil etc.). In fact, I am still using the same ORIGINAL back drum brakes that came with the car. Everytime I go to the brake shop, they say they are good because of the HIGH QUALITY PARTS that Toyota uses in their cars. Mind you, my service guy is a former GM employee saying this.

I cannot think of ANY segment that GM is ahead of Toyota. The only segment that GM was ahead of Toyota for a while was on their full size trucks. That has been reversed for 2 years now with the new Tundra full size. And Toyota pays their workers VERY well, the difference is that Toyota actually pays their workers with profits instead of MASSIVE debt. GM debt issues are rated JUNK. Just like Sub Prime RMBS. Simply put, GM is junk in Quality, Debt and future prospects.

No government bailout....!!!!! Let them die once and for all.. They should have been allowed to die when Roger Smith took over, and you old timers here know what he did to GM.

Lost Cause said...

Gee, Frank, Germany Japan & Korea are all heavily uniionized.

And Mexico and China don't have any unions.

Lost Cause said...

Why would I buy a car from any company that has fought tooth and nail for fifty years against the safety and health of their own customers?

Anonymous said...

F@ck NO!
GM "deserves" to go out of business. If they want to "retool", they should start with top management, get those tools out and put really smart people in.
Arab Oil Embargo was their change to wise up and start building fuel efficient cars. EV1 was their chance to dominate global technological car innovation. What did they do? Squandered those opportunities! No more...

Anonymous said...

I hate to bring it up, but my car is 1973 VW Karmann Ghia. Designed by Italians, built by Germans. All original, runs fine, gets 35+ mpg. It's one of the 100 cars that changed automotive history (look it up).
So, who's got 35 year old GM vehicle that still runs?

Anonymous said...

"Malcolm said:
So let me see if I understand this…."

1. No, Sir, YOU very painfully do not understand Reality 101 in the 21st Century. Allow me to help you gain some perspective.

"You want around 284,000 people to lose their jobs."

2. Yes, if necessary, ALL GM jobs go away. What, PRIVATIZE profits but NATIONALIZE losses? I don't think so, Sir.

"You want hundreds of supplier companies with unknown numbers of employees to shut down."

3. I couldn't care less. Stupid Is as Stupid Does...

"You want to exasperate the economic crisis, increasing home foreclosures and putting dozens of municipalities in economic trouble. For what again?"

4. Yes. Again, I couldn't care less. I only hope it gets worse for everyone that deserves it to get worse. Buy something you cannot afford to pay for and you lose it. Spend more than you take in, you go Bankrupt. Buy on a credit card and cannot pay? Pay 25+% interest forever. I do not care.

For What you ask? For those of us that work hard, pay plenty of taxes and live within our means, buy and pay for what we can afford, have children we can afford, and save money for a illness, family emergency or job loss for starters.

"So you can be “right” on a blog comment? Because you nose is out of joint? Because you didn’t like a car you owned once?"

5. Sir, It's not about ME, my nose in in Great Shape and I would NEVER knowingly buy anything GM has engineered or built including refrigerators, busses or locomotives for that matter. If they made planes I would refuse to fly on them too.

I provide you with evidence (close to a MILLION vehicles recalled for fire danger) and you turn the facts into a personal attack against me, the poster? You sound like a Good Nazi. You would have done great in Bushs' regime. Too Bad the lame duck is about to fly-the-coop...

"Its fine to have an opinion about something, everyone has the right to their opinions. But to call on and wish for the destruction of nearly 300,000 of your fellow citizens is just pathetic."

August 29, 2008 6:54 PM

6. I submit, Sir, you are the pathetic one here. I stand by my post. If all those 300,000 GM people you cite were as comitted and passionate as you are, MAYBE GM could have designed and built things people actually want to buy. They are in trouble because they obviously didn't. Who cares about GM jobs? I am not my brothers keeper and charity begins at home.

I respect you allegiance, no matter how misguided and wrong it is.

Happy Motoring. Carry a fire extinguisher until you get that recall handled...

Anonymous said...

I'm sure the socialist Republicans will give it to them, no questions asked.

Unions, Frank? Really??

I don't think so.

Maybe if management had spent more energy developing reliable fuel efficient cars instead of on anti-union campaigns, GM would be better off today.

Perhaps if they'd gotten on board with a good national health care program instead of greasing the palms of Republicans for 3 decades, they would be in a better position to compete against Japanese companies who don't have to shoulder those costs in this era of grossly inflated medical costs.

Any way you look at it, management really has no one to blame but themselves. Their short-sightedness has put them in this position.

Paul E. Math said...

The proof is in the pudding - if GM design, quality and reliability were truly competitive with other auto manufacturers then they would be able to price them high enough to turn a decent profit - they can't.

I do not like to have my income coercively redistributed to a company making products that we, in aggregate, do not want or need.

Hey, why not subsidize homebuilders too so they can make houses we don't need or want? Oh yeah, we already do.

Nick said...

Mark my words, it will happen. Why stop with Bear Stearns? Now the auto industry and soon other industries will line up for our tax dollars.

Anonymous said...

So, who's got 35 year old GM vehicle that still runs?

------------------------------

73 Z-28 Camaro

Anonymous said...

a lot of interesting comments on this subject. the only GM car I would ever consider is a Corvette Z1, except I'm not a complete tool.

seriously, the real, unfixable problems are the pension/healthcare negotiated decades ago. For the sake of context, Tata Motors out of India can make a quality car that costs $2500 (not a typo). Of the $2500, $40 (not a typo) is labor. Tata invested in the latest greatest robotics to make their cars, and almost no human hands (error) touch the car as it's being manufactured. On the other hand, it costs GM $6500 in pension and healthcare liabilities per vehicle before it even starts being manufactured.

GM is broken, it cannot compete; and has been technically bankrupt for some time.

M said...

Definitely not deserving of a loan from the government. They'll probably get it, not that this taxpayer approves.

Anonymous said...

Dear Malcolm, and Fellow HPers

Another glaring example of your beloved incompetent and stupid GM and why it deserves to die NOW:

How much in legal fees alone to perpetrate this excersize? BTW, they are suing people (THEIR OWN WORKERS) fer chrisakes) who actually PAID MONEY for their shitty, poor quality junk. Seems there are always Greater Fools...

Malcolm, Ready to Give Up yet? GM and its people suck. I am ready to accept your apology.

To Wit:

GM sues to recoup $450K in employee discounts
The Associated Press
Article Launched: 08/30/2008 07:58:23 AM PDT

DETROIT—General Motors Corp. is cracking down on workers and retirees who it says have improperly extended employee discounts to non-relatives and have cost the automaker more than $450,000.
Lawsuits filed by GM say company audits found the discounts had saved buyers anywhere from $1,000 to almost $9,000.

The Detroit News says it isn't clear how many lawsuits have been filed.

The newspapers is reporting Saturday that some of the lawsuits were filed after this month's announcement by GM that it is temporarily extending such discounts to everyone on almost all of its 2008 and some of its 2009 models.

GM spokesman Tom Wilkinson says the timing of the lawsuits and the extended discounts was coincidental. He says that while such uses of employee discounts might have been overlooked in the past, the company now is closely watching its costs.

Maaalcooom, where ARE YOU?

DIE GM. YOU DESERVE IT!

Malcolm said...

Anonymous said…

>only hope it gets worse for everyone
>that deserves it to get worse.

I’ve lost track. Are you the turtle or the scorpion?

Anonymous said...

Malcolm,

I accept your apology. I know it was hard for you to reconcile yourself to it.

It takes a big man to admit HE WAS WRONG...

You're probably OK. But I doubt it.