Monday, August 6, 2007

Chrysler's "Home Despot" and the Death of the American Auto Industry

Well, Chrysler just cinched the end of itself and the U.S. auto industry by naming that perky Mussolini "Home Despot", Robert Nardelli, as its new CEO. I thought this guy would be banned from holding any executive position anywhere for life after his HD escapades! Yes, the fault really lies with Cerberus Capital Management, since Chrysler has no independent life any more outside its private equity bosses. And yes, Cerebrus may actually want Nardelli to play an Al "Chainsaw" Dunlap role with Chrysler. But isn't the so-called "decent interval" a better PR tactic? Do we really want to see Chrysler go down in waves of dictatorial management?
I grew up in Michigan, and friends in the UAW kept asking me to be somewhat empathetic with a struggling, brain-dead industry. When Detroit failed to move into CAD software and environmentally-friendly cars in the 1980s, I lost hope. Sorry Flint, sorry Michael Moore, but screw the U.S. car industry. Nardelli will make sure that Chrysler goes down in as ugly a fashion as possible.

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