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"Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

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  • "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

    Subject: FW: Great letter by a U.S. Ford dealer!

    Attached is a well written "Letter to the Editor" from Elkins Fordland.

    Editor:

    As I watch the coverage of the fate of the U.S. auto industry, one alarming and frustrating fact hits me right between the eyes. The fate of our nation's economic survival is in the hands of some congressmen who are completely out of touch and act without knowledge of an industry that affects almost every person in our nation. The same lack of knowledge is shared with many journalists whom are irresponsible when influencing the opinion of millions of viewers.

    Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama has doomed the industry, calling it a dinosaur. No Mr. Shelby, you are the dinosaur, with ideas stuck in the '70s, '80s and '90s. You and the uninformed journalist and senators that hold onto myths that are not relevant in today's world.

    When you say that the Big Three build vehicles nobody wants to buy, you must have overlooked that GM outsold Toyota by about 1.2 million vehicles in the U.S. and Ford outsold Honda by 850,000 and Nissan by 1.2 million in the U.S. GM was the world's No. 1 automaker beating Toyota by 3,000 units.

    When you claim inferior quality comes from the Big Three, did you realize that Chevy makes the Malibu and Ford makes the Fusion that were both rated over the Camry and Accord by J.D. Power independent survey on initial quality? Did you bother to read the Consumer Report that rated Ford on par with good Japanese automakers.

    Did you realize Big Three's gas guzzlers include the 33 mpg Malibu that t beats the Accord. And for '09 Ford introduces the Hybrid Fusion whose 39 mpg is the best mid-size, beating the Camry Hybrid. Ford's Focus beats the Corolla and Chevy's Cobalt beats the Civic.

    When you ask how many times are we going to bail them out you must be referring to 1980. The only Big Three bailout was Chrysler, who paid back $1 billion, plus interest. GM and Ford have never received government aid.

    When you criticize the Big Three for building so many pickups, surely you've noticed the attempts Toyota and Nissan have made spending billions to try to get a piece of that pie. Perhaps it bothers you that for 31 straight years Ford's F-Series has been the best selling vehicle. Ford and GM have dominated this market and when you see the new '09 F-150 you'll agree this won't change soon.

    Did you realize that both GM and Ford offer more hybrid models than Nissan or Honda. Between 2005 and 2007, Ford alone has inve sted more than $22 billion in research and development of technologies such as Eco Boost, flex fuel, clean diesel, hybrids, plug in hybrids and hydrogen cars.
    It's 2008 and the quality of the vehicles coming out of Detroit are once again the best in the world.

    Perhaps Sen. Shelby isn't really that blind. Maybe he realizes the quality shift to American. Maybe it's the fact that his state of Alabama has given so much to land factories from Honda, Hyundai and Mercedes Benz that he is more concerned about their continued growth than he is about the people of our country. Sen. Shelby's disdain for "government subsidies" is very hypocritical. In the early '90s he was the driving force behind a $253 million incentive package to Mercedes. Plus, Alabama agreed to purchase 2,500 vehicles from Mercedes. While the bridge loan the Big Three is requesting will be paid back, Alabama 's $180,000-plus per job was pure incentive. Sen. Shelby, not only are you out of touch, you are a self-serving hypocrite, who is prepared to ruin our nation because of lack of knowledge and lack of due diligence in making your opinions and decisions.

    After 9/11, the Detroit Three and Harley Davidson gave $40 million-plus emergency vehicles to the recovery efforts. What was given to the 9/11 relief effort by the Asian and European Auto Manufactures? $0 Nada. Zip!

    We live in a world of free trade, world economy and we have not been able to produce products as cost efficiently. While the governments of other auto producing nations subsidize their automakers, our government may be ready to force its demise. While our automakers have paid union wages, benefits and legacy debt, our Asian competitors employ cheap labor. We are at an extreme disadvantage in production cost. Although many UAW concessions begin in 2010, many lawmakers think it's not enough.

    Some point the blame to corporate management. I w would like to speak of Ford Motor Co. The company has streamlined by reducing our workforce by 51,000 since 2005, closing 17 plants and cutting expenses. Product and future product is excellent and the company is focused on one Ford. This is a company poised for success. Ford product quality and corporate management have improved light years since the nightmare of Jacques Nasser. Thank you Alan Mulally and the best auto company management team in the business.

    The financial collapse caused by the secondary mortgage fiasco and the greed of Wall Street has led to a $700 billion bailout of the industry that created the problem. AIG spent nearly $1 million on three company excursions to lavish resorts and hunting destinations. Paulson is saying no to $250 billion foreclosure relief and the whole thing is a mess. So when the Big Three ask for 4 percent of that of the $700 billion, $25 billion to save the country's largest industry, there is obviously oppositions. Bu t does it make sense to reward the culprits of the problem with $700 billion unconditionally, and ignore the victims?

    As a Ford dealer, I feel our portion of the $25 billion will never be touched and is not necessary. Ford currently has $29 billion of liquidity. However, the effect of a bankruptcy by GM will hurt the suppliers we all do business with. A Chapter 11 bankruptcy by any manufacture would cost retirees their health care and retirements. Chances are GM would recover from Chapter 11 with a better business plan with much less expense. So who foots the bill if GM or all three go Chapter 11? All that extra health care, unemployment, loss of tax base and some forgiven debt goes back to the taxpayer, us. With no chance of repayment, this would be much worse than a loan with the intent of repayment.

    So while it is debatable whether a loan or Chapter 11 is better for the Big Three, a $25 billion loan is definitely better for the taxpayers and the economy of our country.

    So I'll end where I began on the quality of the products of Detroit . Before you, Mr. or Ms. Journalist continue to misinform the American public and turn them against one of the great industries that helped build this nation, I must ask you one question. Before you, Mr. or Madam Congressman vote to end health care and retirement benefits for 1 million retirees, eliminate 2.5 million of our nation's jobs, lose the technology that will lead us in the future and create an economic disaster including hundreds of billions of tax dollars lost, I ask this question not in the rhetorical sense. I ask it in the sincere, literal way.

    Can you tell me, have you driven a Ford lately?

    Jim Jackson
    Elkins
    ---------------
    Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
    ---------------
    “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
    ---------
    "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
    ---------
    sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

  • #2
    Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

    Good letter Bob, still a very complicated issue. I think many of our politicians are out of touch with what is going on and what needs to be done to correct our economic problems. I feel things are so out of control I don't know where they even need to start? They are so busy with bailouts, that crook madoff and other serious issues, how can they agree upon a proper course of action to get us back in good shape? So many of us have lost our savings in the stock market, value in our homes, jobs and homes, that even if the US automakers were selling brand new vehicles dirt cheap there would probalby be very few buyers. Our legislaotrs throw around these trillions of dollars figures as if they were monopoly money. I know the US auto industry is important but in my opinon there has got to be a bigger, broader plan or else we are flying blindly.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

      The letter is good and it shows some valid points, but there is one fundamental and huge, not just big, issue that I haven't seen mentioned anywhere in media.

      Namely, if the staple and foundation of the North American economy is an industry that simply failed and cannot remain productive and profitable, then what kind of economy do we have here? Do we even have economy? More and more I appear to look silly considering the fact that over 20 years ago I left a communist country to live where economy and enterprise was considered the true driving force of progress and well being. It turns out that I live now where I had lived before and that communist approach to economy moved westward.

      Again, I understand the need for the state's intervention but the whole fiasco of the US automotive industry is a major disappointment. No matter how you slice it the ""big" 3 workers will be living on handouts.

      The banking and loan botches hasn't helped in maintaining my confidence either.
      In order to understand recursion, one must first understand recursion.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

        I just heard this afternoon that Toyota will be closing 12 of their plants for 11 days due to slow sales.
        ---------------
        Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
        ---------------
        “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
        ---------
        "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
        ---------
        sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

          Thanks for posting this Bob.
          Mr. Jackson makes some VERY valid points.
          Ford should be pushing this letter as much as possible (good PR).

          Now you've got me thinking about the auto bailout yet again.

          If I keep flip flopping on this issue, like I have been, I'll have to change my screen name to john Kerry.
          INSIGHT PIPE is now Maine Drain Serving most of ME with no charge for travel! 207-431-6232 is nolonger a working # our NEW # is 207-355-1476
          Sewer main snaking (roto rooting). Sink clogs. Sewer backup. Pipe inspection/locating. No Dig trenchless repair. Root clog removal.We are NOT to replace your local Plumber, as we do not do plumbing. WE ARE YOUR DRAIN CLEANING EXPERTS!!! www.sewermaine.com waterville winslow bangor augusta skowhegan fairfield pittsfield oakland

          Comment


          • #6
            One of the most entertainment Ford related things I've ever read

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

              I drive a Mazda what do you drive.

              Tony

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

                Originally posted by bobbydavid View Post
                One of the most entertainment Ford related things I've ever read
                From that page:

                According to German reports and surveys, the Focus was claimed to be the most reliable car between one and three years old in the German car market; this is impressive when we consider they were up against prestigious German manufacturers notorious for build quality.

                I owned two Fords. Never again! And yet, I tend to believe what that quote claims.

                A few years ago I drove a German made little itsy bitsy Ford Festiva (Fiesta). I drove the thing in France at 100 mph on one of the great French.... ahem.... freedom highways, in a pretty heavy rain and it felt safer and more stable than driving a larger vehicle at that speed here. The car wasn't even that loud (for its size) and hugged the road nicely. On a sunny and dry day I could easilly push 125 mph in that little thing.
                In order to understand recursion, one must first understand recursion.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

                  Originally posted by AFM View Post
                  I drive a Mazda what do you drive.

                  Tony

                  My wife drives a 2001 Ford Windstar with 107,000 miles. I would estimte it has had about $200 in repairs since we bought it new. I drive a 1996 Chevy Cheyanne 1500 with 184,000 miles. I would estimate it has had about $1000 worth of repairs since I bought it used in 2000, with 50,000 miles. The Chevy is our company truck, and is loaded with tools, and a fiberglass cap.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

                    If Ford is so great, they shouldn't need government assistance. Period.
                    This is America. Capitalist country. Businesses must fail or succeed on their own. We don't need the government intervening in private business any more than they already do.
                    What's next, socialist revolution?
                    Water Heater Reviews & Water Heater Information

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

                      Whats next you ask???

                      Now the Porn industry is asking for a 5billion dollar bail out. DVD sales are down 22%. Larry Flint and the guy from Girls Gone Wild are requesting the $$$. I think they are doing it more to make a statement then anything else, but this is how ridiculous it has become.

                      REDUCE not increase the capital gains tax. Then the people with the $$ will open their check books.
                      INSIGHT PIPE is now Maine Drain Serving most of ME with no charge for travel! 207-431-6232 is nolonger a working # our NEW # is 207-355-1476
                      Sewer main snaking (roto rooting). Sink clogs. Sewer backup. Pipe inspection/locating. No Dig trenchless repair. Root clog removal.We are NOT to replace your local Plumber, as we do not do plumbing. WE ARE YOUR DRAIN CLEANING EXPERTS!!! www.sewermaine.com waterville winslow bangor augusta skowhegan fairfield pittsfield oakland

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

                        Guys we have a huge trade deficit for several reasons, foreign governments set limits and tariffs on our goods and we have lost most of our production businesses and jobs to other countries. Reduce the capitol gains taxes and help the wealthy all you want but they will not invest their money in America and jobs here because they can make a better profit elsewhere. There is no "Free" or "Fair" trade in the global economy, the US economy has taken a beating and unless our legislators adopt a similar mindset of protecting jobs at home do you really expect American investors to grow jobs here? Get real.
                        What are our priorities? Americans who have worked their jobs faithfully and gotten laid off due to the economy?, are now finding their unemployment benefits bankrupt in some states. The problems are serious and the solutions should not be any less serious. All these poorly thoughtout bailouts and talks of trillions of dollars of debt and stimulus fall short of a real plan in my opinion. Exactly what are the options for a family who were supposed to get unemployment benefits, cannot find work and are broke? Will we see bread lines in our future? I am less concerned about redistribution of wealth at the current time and more concerned about the survival of our society. I am in no way suggesting we tax our way out of this crisis or have our government mindlessly giveaway money to those in need. What I am suggesting is smart decision making, a brilliant plan that will carry us into a good future and action.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

                          ...we have lost most of our production businesses and jobs to other countries...
                          In a way, yes, we 'lost' them. We lost them because companies made the conscious decision to move their engineering, manufacturing, and other portions of their companies offshore so they could avoid having to pay workers a decent wage, not have to deal with OSHA or EPA regulations, to get away from paying high property taxes here in the US, and a host of other reasons. But yet they still want to sell their goods here to people who are no longer employed and who are now shouldering more and more of the tax burden in their communities because there is no manufacturing or other industry in the tax base, its all supported by Joe Homeowner now.
                          ---------------
                          Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
                          ---------------
                          “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
                          ---------
                          "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
                          ---------
                          sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

                            Originally posted by Bob D. View Post
                            In a way, yes, we 'lost' them. We lost them because companies made the conscious decision to move their engineering, manufacturing, and other portions of their companies offshore so they could avoid having to pay workers a decent wage, not have to deal with OSHA or EPA regulations, to get away from paying high property taxes here in the US, and a host of other reasons. But yet they still want to sell their goods here to people who are no longer employed and who are now shouldering more and more of the tax burden in their communities because there is no manufacturing or other industry in the tax base, its all supported by Joe Homeowner now.
                            Bob, I've been posting the same conclusions and while it's nice to see you agree with me I wonder where this will all lead? I know there are some very hard working folks who post on this site and I wish them continued business success. My years as a Union guy convinced me that even when we are confident in our work ethic and abilities, we can't predict what's around the corner. These times will test us all, and I hope we can pull together and see a bright future. Frank.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: "Letter to the Editor" by a Ford Dealer

                              Originally posted by Service Guy View Post
                              If Ford is so great, they shouldn't need government assistance. Period.
                              This is America. Capitalist country. Businesses must fail or succeed on their own. We don't need the government intervening in private business any more than they already do.
                              What's next, socialist revolution?
                              Ford being the only one of the big three that didn't take the bailout, they were more interested in it as a "just in case". They don't need it, and of the big three are the company most likely to survive and return to profitability.
                              Short story here, imo Save your ire for the airlines.
                              No, it's not rocket science, it's plumbing and unlike rocket science it requires a license.

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