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December 16, 2008


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"The bottom line is that they aren't making profitable vehicles people want to buy."

Let's side aside the moment, in which people don't want to buy much of anything automotive, whether its name is Toyota, or Volvo or Ford.

In a more routine economy, has Detroit made "profitable vehicles that people want to buy"? The answer in fact is "Yes."

The names of those vehicles are Cadillac, F-150, Yukon, Corvette and Mustang, and too many others to list.

The problem for Detroit has been that they were not allowed to simply design, build and sell those cars. The problem for Detroit is that Congressional leaders decided on their own, as a favor to their friends in the environmental movement, that they'd lean on Detroit to produce to a Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standard. (Never mind that CAFE didn't have any measurable benefit for the envirnment.) So Detroit has bent over backwards, not to sell "profitable vehicles that people want to buy," but vehicles locked into a hopeless battle with transplant car makers who have few if any of Detroit's legacy costs and union work rules. There are even special "two-fleet" CAFE rules that make certain that Detroit cannot get out from under the UAW's control in making those cars.

Of course, the UAW isn't stupid. At least not THAT stupid. They oppose CAFE as well. Perhaps not as vociferously and as articulately as Holman Jenkins of the Wall Street Journal, but they do oppose CAFE. Rep. John Dingell (D-UAW) has tried to stand up to CAFE. Even the Detroit Free Press' Democrat-mouthpiece editorial writers oppose CAFE; perhaps not so much while they are simultaneously begging Speaker Pelosi and other green Democrats for money, but they claim to have taken an anti-CAFE position, or so Ron Dzwonkowski tells me.

So the proposal to scrap CAFE as a first step toward making a profitable Detroit is not a radical right-wing proposal. It is a practical, sensible proposal and one that Republican Senators, auto makers, auto workers and even - gasp - the Detroit Free Press can agree on.

That leaves out only the ultra-extremist far left. The monster-raving-loony-Kucinich-Pelosi-Kennedy-Nader spectrum of politics.

Jack Lessenberry? Are you listening?

No one pays any attention to your posts Anonymous becuase you are an intellectual coward who posts under Anonymous until you get some balls I hope Jack continues to ignore your comments..

Truth the world does not need 12 million new cars every year regardless of who makes them..

The world needs to move toward massive public transit vehicles and the related industries to construct this new paradigm of transportation..

Currently in the US 84% of transportation involves a car that has got to change!!

Mike Moore is on to something....

"Mike Moore is on to something...."

Jelly doughnuts. And chilli dogs with everything.

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