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Old 04-06-2009, 11:19 AM   #1
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Default Was Obama Right to Fire Wagoner?

Been thinking about this a lot. Was Wagoner really the problem? Look at what he's done for GM:

The Chevy Malibu is one of the best cars GM has ever built. It's initial quality is better than both the Camry and Accord. It gets 33 MPH. The KC plant where they are made is one of the most efficient in the industry.

Buick tied for first as the most relaible car in the World.

The Cadilac CTS was the car of the year (I think in '08? Maybe '07?)

The Aveo is cheaper than the Fit, Rio or Yaris.

The Cruze and Spark minicar are hitting the road next year.

The Volt is coming (although they'll need to lower their production costs to make that thing fly).

It seems to me that Wagoner did a lot of good things, and was turning some things around. Yeah, financially, he was slow to adapt, but isn't that more the purview of the CFO? Wagoner improved efficiency, was slated to put out a revamped and updated line of cars with the same or better quality than the Japanese cars, and he was definitely working on more fuel efficient and greener auto's.

I think Wagoner was Obama's goat and he dumped the wrong guy.
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Old 04-06-2009, 12:18 PM   #2
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Default Re: Was Obama Right to Fire Wagoner?

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Originally Posted by revefsreleets View Post
I think Wagoner was Obama's goat and he dumped the wrong guy.
He was definitely the goat, but I don't know if it was the wrong move.

Basically, in order for GM to have any chance of surviving at all, the bottom line is they're going to have to completely tear up the ridiculous union contracts. If the unions agree to it, great ... if it's unilateral and the union puts up some pretense of outrage and goes on strike, just as good.

Think of how the Steelers would be if we were forced to pay every player according to the terms of the Max Starks contract. That's what GM has been dealing with for 20, 30 years. It can't keep going on, and something drastic like this probably had to happen if that was ever going to change.
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Old 04-06-2009, 12:28 PM   #3
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Default Re: Was Obama Right to Fire Wagoner?

But Wagoner had nothing to do with that. His hands were tied.
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Old 04-06-2009, 12:36 PM   #4
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Default Re: Was Obama Right to Fire Wagoner?

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But Wagoner had nothing to do with that. His hands were tied.
Exactly. Firing him was probably just a prelude to some kind of government-backed plan that will tear up the union contracts because it's an emergency. They had to can the CEO to make the point that things are really that dire.

This might not have been Wagoner's fault personally, but I really don't think his firing was the usual kind where you just assign blame without actually solving the problem. It was more like a tool to make something happen that we haven't seen yet.
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Old 04-06-2009, 02:09 PM   #5
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Default Re: Was Obama Right to Fire Wagoner?

Chevrolet is better off today then 10 years ago or even 20 years ago. They finally figured out that ya cant keep putting the same vehicle out there for 10 years without changing it. Chevrolet will be fine without the government and so will Dodge. The reason the auto industry is down is the same reason home sales are down... People are being laid off every where.
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Old 04-06-2009, 03:27 PM   #6
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Default Re: Was Obama Right to Fire Wagoner?

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Chevrolet is better off today then 10 years ago or even 20 years ago. They finally figured out that ya cant keep putting the same vehicle out there for 10 years without changing it. Chevrolet will be fine without the government and so will Dodge. The reason the auto industry is down is the same reason home sales are down... People are being laid off every where.
And the big 3 were stuck, like you said, putting the same car out every year. They sat on their hands while Toyota, Honda and Hyundai passed them by in design. Only now are they motivated and redesigning their lineup.
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