I cannot believe, at all, that a CEO of a company resigned because the White House asked him to do so. No way, no how. The spinsters in Washington might try to market it this way, but I don’t buy it for a second. If DC was in the business of forcing out CEO’s, why are all the corrupt bankers still redecorating their offices with bailout money? And I don’t believe that Obama all of a sudden wanted to run a car company. (Especially this one) There has got to be something else going on behind the scenes that we don’t know about, as no CEO would resign at the request of the White House. Resign because of the board? Maybe. Shareholders? Maybe. Company about to go belly-up? Maybe. Because he ran the place into the ground? Maybe. But at the request of some guys in D.C.? Nope, not buying it. Here are some snippets from an article in the NY Times talking about what happened yesterday:
“They are bailing out just about anybody that shows up and says they need cash. The public has grown weary of it and instead of throwing a banker to the wolves they have decided to throw Wagoner to the wolves,” Morici said.
GM has lost about $82 billion since 2005 when its problems began to mount in the U.S. market. GM has lost about 95 percent of its value since Wagoner took over as CEO.
GM and Chrysler have run through most of the initial bailout and are at risk of bankruptcy without immediate help. But neither automaker has finished the cost-cutting overhaul dictated by the terms of the auto industry bailout launched by the Bush administration that set a deadline of March 31 for determining whether the companies can be saved.
I know Wagoner is wealthy; he doesn’t need this job to be secure. As the first paragraph I quoted above says, we needed to blame someone – and Wagoner is getting that blame. Too bad it won’t make a difference for him or for GM. My solution? Let these American manufacturers go under and give all that bailout money to the guys making the Tesla electric cars. $50,000 for an electric, beautiful 5 passenger sedan that goes 300 miles on a charge, charges in 45 minutes, and does 0-60 in 5.6 seconds? Or an ugly Chevy Malibu lookalike that costs the same, goes only 40 miles on a charge and then switches to gasoline. It’s a no-brainer which I would buy if I had the cash. Strange how a few guys with some VC money can make viable all-electric cars that most people would be happy driving, while US manufacturers cannot even make their own version of a Prius. Strange times indeed…