Discuss Detroit DISCUSS DETROIT! Wagoner Stepping Down Archive through March 30, 2009 Previous Next
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Doma
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Username: Doma

Post Number: 30
Registered: 05-2008
Posted on Sunday, March 29, 2009 - 10:21 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Rick wasn't so bad, turning around an auto company is like trying to turn around an ocean freighter going at full speed. You run your business model 5, 10, 15 years in the future. Guy had what? 7 years at the helm of GM?

Look at how much progress has been made in that time, 7 years ago GM didn't even COMPETE in small to midsized cars.

GM is a year or 2 away from being on top again, by that time, it won't matter who the CEO is. Everything happening will be put in place by Wagoner's decisions made up until now. Of course, that is if Obama doesn't appoint some wacko liberal environmentalist that decides to make all of GM's lineup look like Smart cars.
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Novine
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Username: Novine

Post Number: 1316
Registered: 07-2007
Posted on Sunday, March 29, 2009 - 10:32 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"Obama will have this country so fucked up in the next two years before somebody with brains and common sense takes over Congress that the country is truly doomed."

I love reading this stuff. The guy's been in office for 2 months and he's the one responsible for leading our country into the disaster that we're facing today?

(Message edited by novine on March 29, 2009)
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Heedus
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Username: Heedus

Post Number: 37
Registered: 06-2008
Posted on Sunday, March 29, 2009 - 10:36 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Wagoner was CEO and President since June 2000 and President and COO since 1998. A little more than seven years at the helm. Not a whole lot more, but still more.
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Gdub
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Username: Gdub

Post Number: 293
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Sunday, March 29, 2009 - 10:42 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"I love reading this stuff. The guy's been in office for 2 months and he's the one responsible for leading our country into the disaster that we're facing today?"

No doubt. You should see the freep.com posts. Amazing how the forced resignation of a failed CEO who made $17 million / year while the formerly largest company in the U.S. nearly died under his watch can somehow bring out the anti-Obama psychotics. All of a sudden we're supposed to be sympathetic for multi-millionaire Birmingham executives? Any excuse to blame the president for...something. And, I'm sure Wagoner would be so very touched by such a show of fake righteous indignation, I mean, "support".
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Irish_mafia
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Username: Irish_mafia

Post Number: 1262
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Sunday, March 29, 2009 - 10:53 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Have you ever noticed that you never see Adolf Hitler and Barak Obama in the same place? I'm just saying...
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Lilpup
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Username: Lilpup

Post Number: 5465
Registered: 06-2004
Posted on Sunday, March 29, 2009 - 10:58 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I think mixed feelings are understandable. I think there's a fear that D.C. does cater to Wall Street and that neither Wall Street nor D.C. fully understand heavy industry. Obama talks a lot about US auto company bad points but rarely mentions the issues handicapping them (health care and lack of fair trade). He's still talking about more concessions from workers, despite all they've already given, yet hasn't done anything to create US job or quell offshoring.

Granted he hasn't been in office long, but from initial appearances he's onboard for the race to the bottom.
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Novine
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Username: Novine

Post Number: 1317
Registered: 07-2007
Posted on Sunday, March 29, 2009 - 11:03 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I saw the postings from the idiot brigade at the Freep. The argument that the current credit crisis has been caused by the efforts to extend homeownership to low-income Americans is laughable. Both Republicans and Democrats have been pushing to increase homeownership rates. Bush even took credit for the increase in the percentage of Americans who owned homes and it was part of the Republican Party platform in 2004. It wasn't the low-income Americans who created the financial time-bombs that have exploded on Wall Street. And if the housing bubble hadn't occurred, the Big 3's day of reckoning would have happened that much sooner. But facts aren't a strong point for the Dittoheads.
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Sstashmoo
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Username: Sstashmoo

Post Number: 3550
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Sunday, March 29, 2009 - 11:08 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

He isn't impressing me neither. We have issues that need to be addressed immediately. And they can be. This guy better turn his brain on and grow a set or we're all doomed.
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Gdub
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Username: Gdub

Post Number: 294
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Sunday, March 29, 2009 - 11:57 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The best summary I've read of the root cause of the great collapse: http://www.rollingstone.com/po litics/story/26793903/the_big_ takeover/

Very thorough and readable, and not really partisan. It points out how players on both sides of the spectrum are to blame, but mostly Phil Gramm and... "one Joseph Cassano, the head of a tiny, 400-person unit within the company called AIG Financial Products, or AIGFP. Cassano, a pudgy, balding Brooklyn College grad with beady eyes and way too much forehead, cut his teeth in the Eighties working for Mike Milken, the granddaddy of modern Wall Street debt alchemists. Milken, who pioneered the creative use of junk bonds, relied on messianic genius and a whole array of insider schemes to evade detection while wreaking financial disaster. Cassano, by contrast, was just a greedy little turd with a knack for selective accounting who ran his scam right out in the open, thanks to Washington's deregulation of the Wall Street casino. "It's all about the regulatory environment," says a government source involved with the AIG bailout. "These guys look for holes in the system, for ways they can do trades without government interference. Whatever is unregulated, all the action is going to pile into that."
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Drankin21
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Username: Drankin21

Post Number: 310
Registered: 12-2003
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 12:00 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

RW had the best interests of the company at the top of his mind at all times. Anyone that even insinuates that he is selfish or otherwise does not know him.

Now, whether he made the best decisions is a different story. Let's not assassinate the man for doing the best job that he could.
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Ktkeller08
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Username: Ktkeller08

Post Number: 40
Registered: 10-2008
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 12:01 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I honestly think this guy got thrown under the bus. I can't say he did the best job when he first got the top job, as it seemed like he was going with the status quo.

But I think he finally got it in the last few years, with the help of Bob Lutz, that things needed to change. But now that Rick's gone, and Bob isn't letting the door hit him in the rear as he leaves, I really question whose going to lead this company to prosperity now.

One thing I know is that if the government thinks that they need GM to make cars that they want people to buy (rather than ones people actually want to buy) that they might as well just save their time and let them go bankrupt.

With that said, the Fed's are giving GM 60 days to restructure and Chrysler 30 days to ally themselves with Fiat.

And the saga continues.....
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Firstandten
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Username: Firstandten

Post Number: 814
Registered: 05-2006
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 1:05 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

After you read this summary you'll see why the Obama administration felt Mr Wagoner needed to go.
Not that he was a bad CEO he just isn't the guy to move GM forward. He's had his chances and whats telling is that GM's market share has dropped like a rock under his watch.

When you go to DC hat in hand asking for a bailout expect this kind of scrutiny. The days of the Bush good old boys bailouts with no accountability is coming quickly to an end.

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/p ackages/pdf/business/20090330- gm-assessment.pdf
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Ronaldj
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Username: Ronaldj

Post Number: 126
Registered: 01-2007
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 1:05 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I did not read everything but Alfred Sloan must be spinning in his grave.
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Danindc
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Username: Danindc

Post Number: 4658
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 1:12 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

When you go to DC hat in hand asking for a bailout expect this kind of scrutiny.



And that's the truth of it. GM and Chrysler were both told that they needed to devise a plan to return to profitability by a specified date. They didn't meet those expectations, and now Wagoner is stepping down.

So, let's all chant and scream and holler how the President is going to ruin the country, even though he exercised responsible executive authority, given the large financial stake we all have in these two companies.
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Lilpup
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Username: Lilpup

Post Number: 5468
Registered: 06-2004
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 1:19 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Except nothing yet has even been suggested in regard to the real issues confronting the automakers.

The only reason Ford has escaped is that they moved earlier to maximize their liquidity. Had GM done that they wouldn't be in this political situation even though they'd still be generating losses.

Meanwhile both are still disadvantaged by being domestic manufacturers in the US.
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Sstashmoo
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Username: Sstashmoo

Post Number: 3551
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 1:26 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

""given the large financial stake we all have in these two companies.""

And it's chump change compared to the banks, and their only plan was to fix their bottom line and hand some money to their largest shareholders.
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Zrx_doug
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Username: Zrx_doug

Post Number: 942
Registered: 03-2008
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 1:29 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I'm sorry, but this is total bullshit..why are the politicians who willingly tossed away billions in bail-out funds to AIG not being asked to resign?
What exactly is the difference?
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Firstandten
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Username: Firstandten

Post Number: 815
Registered: 05-2006
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 1:47 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

GM needed out of the box thinking to deal with the problems they are having, Wagoner did not move either quickly enough or aggressively enough to address the problems. He gave us incremental changes instead of the wholesale changes that was needed. One example of this is the multitude of brands that GM still has and needs to address. Also they still haven't pared its dealership base like it should.

Yes, there are economic policy issues that have affected the automakers that were out of there control, but the Detroit auto exec's made shortsighted decisions that didn't address the changing landscape of the industry.

So now GM comes in late with there plan basically giving us more incremental change instead of a basic and fundamental restructuring of how they do business. And folks want to jump all over Obama for doing his due diligence
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Firstandten
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Username: Firstandten

Post Number: 816
Registered: 05-2006
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 1:58 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I'm of a similar mind with you Zrx_doug but I think in some respects we are comparing apples and oranges. We are looking at two domestic auto manufactures one of which is not even the biggest auto company any more, versus a financial company with ties to and can affect the world economy.

Even though the concepts are the same the result of the world economy not to mention the US economy with a AIG going under versus GM going under are not comparable.
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Optima
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Username: Optima

Post Number: 66
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 2:15 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I agree that it was the bondholders that were/are a strong determining factor. Realistically, I knew there would be at least one sacrificial lamb here but I am stunned that it happened before the review of plan by the Feds. The changes that are proposed will take time to implement and RW has not be given time to implement the plan...Meanwhile, many banks are very reluctant to lend to help move vehicles...
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Philbo
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Username: Philbo

Post Number: 96
Registered: 09-2008
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 2:19 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Ron Gettlefinger should be shown the door too. Frome what I understand one reason Obama wanted Wagner out was his lack of ability to get more concessions frome the UAW. Wake up Ron, its either now or in front of a bankruptcy judge.
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Lilpup
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Username: Lilpup

Post Number: 5470
Registered: 06-2004
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 2:33 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Optima, the Feds said both Chrysler's and GM's plans are insufficient. They further said they don't see Chrysler as ever being viable as a standalone, thus the force to work with Fiat.
http://freep.com/uploads/pdfs/ 2009/03/0330_Chrysler_Viabilit y_Assessment.pdf
http://freep.com/uploads/pdfs/ 2009/03/0330_GM_Viability_Asse ssment.pdf

Philbo, if that's true that's BS. The only thing the UAW hasn't worked with is the VEBA funding and I think that's perfectly understandable. It's the bondholders who have been screwing with GM the most.
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Optima
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Username: Optima

Post Number: 67
Registered: 12-2006
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 2:40 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

http://graphics8.nytimes.com/p ackages/pdf/business/20090330- gm-assessment.pdf

The above link, the task force's synopsis of the GM restructuring plan, posted by Firstandten makes it very clear why RW was forced out.
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Crash_nyc
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Username: Crash_nyc

Post Number: 405
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 4:35 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Good!! GM's top management is the nucleus of their problems. However, Wagoner is just one of many problem members of GM's upper-management who need to be removed...

One of our old family friends was an upper-level GM exec for over 30 years. Since retirement, GM has brought him in twice a year as a consultant, to go over the books and business plans, and offer advice.

He said that over the past 10 to 15 years, they've gradually stopped heeding his advice. He said that GM's top managers have molded the company into the single worst business model he's ever seen, bleeding money from every orafice.

Whenever he reported on ways to fix it, more often than not, they'd tell him that his ideas for improvement were inherently unworkable under their current business model.

GM basically hires him to tell them things that they don't want to hear (for a LOT of money). Then they tell him he's full of shit, but bring him back time after time He's still doing it, they're still not listening, and his checks are still clearing.

And the beat goes on...
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Danny
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Username: Danny

Post Number: 4592
Registered: 02-2004
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 7:00 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

YAY!

The car czar is gone! This is truly the end of the GENERAL MOTORS!

Mr. Durant is probably smiling in the afterlife right about now.
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Rjk
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Username: Rjk

Post Number: 1282
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 7:02 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"Even though the concepts are the same the result of the world economy not to mention the US economy with a AIG going under versus GM going under are not comparable."

What difference does that have to do with his (Zrx_doug) point? In theory changing the top management is supposed to enable the company to run better especially when they were loaned or given tax dollars.

Where are all the people who were angered over the difference in how the auto companies and the banking industry were being treated and what was expected of them back when Bush was president?

I just hope these decisions are being made based on what's best for GM/Chrysler and not Obama being worried about his mid-term elections and reelection. Don't think that 7 out of 10 Americans being against this bailout has nothing to do with some of these decisions.
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Cinderpath
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Username: Cinderpath

Post Number: 966
Registered: 05-2006
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 8:38 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

-Well the Government did the same thing with the creation of Conrail from the ashes of Penn Central, and the railroads were better off for it, the taxpayers got a lot of their money back, and from the looks of Ford, I think a change of blood is not necessarily a bad thing. The bottom line is when the government is in control you play by their rules.

I suspect the next bank that ask for government cash is going to come with a house cleaning as well; this was a shot across the bow.
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Firstandten
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Username: Firstandten

Post Number: 817
Registered: 05-2006
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 9:01 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

AIG just changed its top management as a result of the financial crisis. Ed Liddy took over in September and he's paid an $1.00 annual salary.

An AIG executive vp resigned on March 24.

I'm in agreement with you however. Any Exec who comes to DC. begging for money should immediately resign their position as a condition for getting the money.

Bailouts are never popular with the American public going back to Chryslers in 79. Obama has decided that doing nothing and letting the free market determine everything considering the shape of the economy right now was not a good option either politically or fiscally.
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Iheartthed
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Username: Iheartthed

Post Number: 3895
Registered: 04-2006
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 9:28 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

quote:

Obama talks a lot about US auto company bad points but rarely mentions the issues handicapping them (health care and lack of fair trade).



WHAT? How could you say that? Health care is only like his top priority behind fixing the financial system, and the war in Iraq. Healthcare was the centerpiece of his presidential campaign, and the centerpiece of his first budget. He's now being accused by the Europeans and Canadians of playing protectionist, but fair trade isn't a priority?
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Novine
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Username: Novine

Post Number: 1322
Registered: 07-2007
Posted on Monday, March 30, 2009 - 10:21 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Good analysis of the hole that GM is in.

http://seekingalpha.com/articl e/128393-ousting-rick-wagoner- won-t-solve-gm-s-problems