Tuesday, November 18, 2008

American Made

The holidays are looming closer and closer and the news is full of worldwide economic woes. Things aren't predicted to get better in the coming year..only worse. The big three automakers, GM, Chrysler, and Ford are on the verge of bankruptcy and looking for a bailout.

My husband and I were watching a news show last night and debating the issue. Are you talking about these things in your homes too? These are terrible economic times, aren't they? Weeks ago Congress approved a $700 billion bailout of our banking system. Huge controvery. And now they are faced with another decision. These mega-giant automakers have known for YEARS they needed to re-tool and get on the same page as the Japanese and German automakers but they continued to push their SUV's and trucks and ginormous cars. Fuel efficiency? Nope. They didn't do much of that either. I live in Texas and nearly everyone drives big pickups and Suburbans. Several years ago, we switched to more fuel efficient cars. My husband and I both drive German made cars and our kids drive Japanese cars. Do I feel guilty for not buying American? Not really. The product we needed and wanted wasn't available. If American companies built something really cool that gave us the great gas mileage, we would've bought these in a flash.

So now these companies are in big trouble and want us to bail them out. Do we DO it??? Consider what happens if we DON'T. Millions of people will lose their jobs not only on the assembly line but all these folks who work in related industries will be unemployed. These blue collar folks will lose their health care and possibly their homes. So do we bail out the big dogs and save these people? Personally, I don't give a damn about those big wheels at the top but the workers will suffer tremendously. What a mess! Any thoughts about this?


Anne Rainey said...

I don't know what the answer is. It's scary as hell. Everywhere I look someone is getting laid off or losing their business. I've never seen it like this before.

Regina Carlysle said...

I know. My husband and I were back and forth about this last night. His thoughts...they don't DESERVE to be bailed out. They created this problem through their own greed, etc. I agree. They continued to make high priced gas guzzlers because that is what consummers were buying. But they KNEW what was coming.

Still...It's not the fault of these poor people who are struggling to keep their families going. This would soooo hurt the middle class. Bad news all around.

Anonymous said...

I can not begin to tell you the number of jobs, contracts and positions I have lost to one of the great evils of this economic nightmare, off shoring. I work in technologies, have for more than 20 years now. I wake up every morning wondering if my job will still be here by the afternoon.

I'm currently contracted to a very large entertainment company as an Oracle DBA. I can't tell you the name of the company because they will sue me. However, I work remote, meaning I work from home. It is very easy for me to work from home, so easy in fact that it can be done from anywhere in the world. And I bet you can guess what that means.

Yeah, Sweetie and I talk about it, almost every day. And almost every day I feel that ulcer grow just a little larger and my blood pressure inch up just a little higher. 48 years old and I feel like 90 sometimes. I'm sick to death of this roller coaster.

And now you know why I'm trying to become a published author.

Anonymous said...

These are scary times. My Dad is nearly ninty and he said back in 1999 that before the decade is out you wouldn't be able to buy American made cars anymore. I didn't believe him then, and I'm praying that he is wrong.

Regina Carlysle said...

Ahhh Dr. Karl. I soooo feel for you. These are impossibly scary times for most of us. Greed caught up with us, didn't it? Keeping fingers crossed that you publish publish publish. I have a good feeling though. Make sure and tell us when you DO. We'll be your cheerleaders.

Regina Carlysle said...

I know Greta. Can you imagine not seeing American cars on the road? I certainly can't. Look what these people have done. It makes me mad.

Genella deGrey said...

We have a '93 Honda. The engine is solid and purrs like a kitten.

We had a Ford that lasted all of four years. It literally fell apart in our hands.

Which car company would you buy from when it came time to make such an investment, which is second only to buying a home?

It's not the consumer's fault that American car companies refuse to manufacture dependable vehicles which have life spans longer than a moth's.

My money will have to go toward quality, not the color of the banner which waves above the sign.


Kelley Nyrae said...

It's so hard to know what exactly is the best thing to do. I wish I knew. It's so stressful to think about.

Regina Carlysle said...

I agree with you Genella. A car purchase is a big deal to almost everybody. We want a great LOOK, great mileage and it to LAST. We often don't get that with American cars and that's sad. We're better than that.

Melissa Schroeder said...

Actually, what the car companies are looking for is a loan NOT a bailout. We did this in the 80s and the US gov't made money. So unlike the banks, they aren't looking for a bialout. They actually expect to have to pay back the money with interest. I am not the happiest with them now, but this will truly screw our country. There are so many plants across the US, not just in MI anymore. It might be nice to say screw them, because seriously, the car company execs defnitely deserve that attitude. But if you thought the banking fallout was bad, that will be NOTHING compared to this. People all over the country will be laid off.
One thing that would help is getting healthcare fixed. It is a major drain on companies and if the gov't is helping with it, it would end up helping companies.
But, again, they would have to pay the money back, not like the banks.