Monday, November 17, 2008

Could Apple's Steve Jobs save the US auto industry?

The mighty GM is bleeding to death, it's burning through cash so fast the automaker could be out of cash soon. Good. Their cars suck.

Pound360 understands
"the shockwave" that would ensue if GM went under. But we're sick of giving Detroit chances to innovate and compete in the auto market of the future. They have no vision. They're an embarrassment to a country that prides itself on innovation.

We say no to the auto industry bailout package that
congress is debating. It's too late. They already had their chance.

In the nineties, the Clinton Administration contributed $1.4 billion to the auto industry in an effort to spark fuel efficiency innovations. But the US auto industry squandered it and "Japanese automakers, who were excluded from the program, have been able to put working hybrids on sale first,"
reported the NY Times in 2000.

Why? Washington has been "protecting Detroit to death" with subsidies, tax breaks, bailouts and every other trick in the book for decades,
says the NY Times op-ed columnist Thomas Friedman.

Detroit is too comfortable. Let it burn, and let the remains stand as a monument to other industries that would focus their resources on Washington "lobbying and maneuvering" rather than "innovating around fuel efficiency, productivity and design," as Friedman puts it.

With our disastrous auto industry out of the way, Pound360 is anxious to see what industry would emerge to take its place. Renewable energy? Space vehicles?

Friedman does offer some hope for the US auto industry. And Pound360 reluctantly agrees there is still hope. First, the existing GM leadership needs to be fired in exchange for Federal Aid. Second, put Apple's Steve Jobs, someone "who doesn't need to be bribed to do innovation," in charge.

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.