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  1.    #61  
    Quote Originally Posted by BARYE View Post

    ...(BTW, yes Shelby is a lying deceiving hypocrite -- yes Alabama and the south are in bed with foreign car makers, and see themselves so aligned -- and as such are in opposition to Detroit. They almost want Detroit to fail.

    Initial build quality is a meaningless statistic -- what is important is consumer valuation after 2, 5, 10 years of ownership.

    What is that number ?? I haven't checked -- but I suspect its VERY important in keeping customers, engendering loyalty, and getting them to rebuy from the same car company.
    Car_designer -- CBS did a story for the Evening News tonight that analyzed this specifc issue: consumer satisfaction.

    They found that nearly 65% of Honda and Toyota owners intend to buy the same brand car again.

    About 1/2 of GM & Ford's owners feel that way, and a 1/3 of Chrysler's.

    And of top 27 models in consumer satisfaction, only 3 are from american companies (2 corvettes and a cadalac).

    These are not numbers to be especially hopeful about.

    BTW -- the GOP today in effect told the workers of Detroit and the country as a whole, to drop dead.

    They will block this aid package.

    I hope GM is bluffing, I hope they do not go bankrupt before the new Senate is sworn in. In any case, I'd much rather the new congress write the rules for this aid than junior -- but we seem destined to find out soon, who of the players in this card game, are bluffing.
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  2. #62  
    If the republicans kill this they may be signing their own death certificate as a party. They will never see another Reagan-Democrat vote for at least a generation.
  3.    #63  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas View Post
    If the republicans kill this they may be signing their own death certificate as a party. They will never see another Reagan-Democrat vote for at least a generation.

    maybe daT, but I doubt it.

    The working class of this country are more easily moved by emotional visceral things, than logic.

    Except when things are REALLY bad --- as they are now, and maybe getting much worse -- they ignore their genuine better interests in favor of the superficial sloganeering answer.

    Cynically the GOPers know that opposing helping the car companies is popular in the talk radio sense -- and the explanation of why it would hurt average people and have consequences far across the nation are far too complicated to explain or comprehend.

    Additionally the effects of a car company collapse would be felt far into Obama's administration -- probably obliterating any hope he has for developing any real changes in the country's direction -- and probably saddling him with blame for the wretched state the country would be in (and thereby hoping for the GOP to regain power by 2012).

    Good to have your voice again ...
    Last edited by BARYE; 12/11/2008 at 04:42 PM.
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  4. #64  
    personally, I think customer satisfaction has a lot to do with the dealer-customer interaction, which sadly, we don't have a whole lot of direct control.

    a note on perceptions: we took a future vehicle and did a customer clinic on it. we then replaced the badging with toyota badging inside and out and told customers it was a toyota future vehicle clinic
    we received a significantly more favorable response.

    I have only owned american cars my whole life. I buy, properly maintain and keep 'em till about 150k before I sell them. out of the ten or so vehicles I have owned, I had only one that had a major repair (transmission). I had a 1983 dodge reliant K car that had 226k on it before I sold it because it started to smoke heavily. I drive a 2004 F-150 and have had no big problems, just normal wear and maintainence items: brake pads, tail light bulb and I just replaced the battery. it has 88k on it and I plan on keeping it at least till 150k miles.

    the auto industry slowdown is already affecting us in a big way. lots of foreclosed homes in our subdivision. there is a small home repo a few blocks away that the bank is asking 20k for. do a realtor.com property search in detroit and you will be amazed at all the bank owned prooperties for sale at low prices.
  5.    #65  
    Quote Originally Posted by car_designer View Post
    personally, I think customer satisfaction has a lot to do with the dealer-customer interaction, which sadly, we don't have a whole lot of direct control.

    a note on perceptions: we took a future vehicle and did a customer clinic on it. we then replaced the badging with toyota badging inside and out and told customers it was a toyota future vehicle clinic we received a significantly more favorable response....

    prejudice is a lagging indicator.

    If in 1965 you'd have asked the same random sample of people their opinion of Japanese cars, they would of laughed and mocked the idea of a transistor radio on 4 wheels.

    People laughed at the thought of Honda manufacturing cars instead of just motorcycles.

    The reputation they now have has been earned through decades of good design and craftmanship -- based on an in the DNA focus on ensuring reliability and dependability.

    That prejudice in favor of Japanese cars is the product of thousands of anecdotes like the one talked about earlier in this thread, of people boasting about owning their Toyotas for 250K miles.

    Initial price, style, performance -- these are things that help make the initial sale -- but its long term reliability, gas mileage, dealer/manufacturer service generousity -- that wins the car company long term loyalty.

    (I speak as someone who has not owned a motor vehicle in more than 5 years -- and who has never in his very long life bought a new car. I do however drive rentals, and they're sometimes american. FWIW, I'm usually favorably impressed by them -- but I only have them for maybe a weekend, so that does'nt address this issue really at all.)
    Last edited by BARYE; 01/24/2009 at 02:54 AM.
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  6.    #66  
    There will be blood on the cobblestones of Wall Street tomorrow, main street the day after ...



    Auto bailout dies in Senate

    By John Crawley and Richard Cowan John Crawley And Richard Cowan 1 hr 29 mins ago

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Senate failed on Thursday night to reach a last-ditch compromise to bail out automakers, effectively killing any chance of congressional action this year.

    Republican-brokered talks faltered, leaving the chamber at a dead end on an approach for extending $14 billion in loans to avert a threatened collapse of one or more automakers, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said in remarks on the floor.

    "It's over with," Reid said.

    Markets across the Asia-Pacific region dropped more than three percent after news the U.S. automaker bailout talks had collapsed.

    Japan's Nikkei share average fell 3 percent, Taiwan stocks dove 4.33 percent, shares in Seoul slid more than 4 percent and Australia shares dropped 3.2 percent...
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  7.    #67  
    Auto Suppliers Share in the Anxiety
    By BILL VLASIC and LESLIE WAYNE

    DETROIT — With Congress failing to agree on a bailout for Detroit, the odds that General Motors and Chrysler will be insolvent by year’s end are growing rapidly.

    The companies have been warning that they would run out of money for some time, but crushing bills from their suppliers are coming due. It appeared unlikely that they could hold on until President-elect Barack Obama takes office next month, when he and a new Congress might be able to provide a lifeline, as a Congressional rescue this year looked increasingly unlikely.
    As a result, the hypotheticals about the domino effect of the companies’ troubles through the vast network of auto supplier firms — which employ more than twice as many workers as the carmakers — are becoming real.

    General Motors and Chrysler, for example, owe their suppliers a total of roughly $10 billion for parts that have been delivered. G.M. has held off paying them for weeks, and Chrysler is paying in small increments. But the cash shortages at G.M. and Chrysler are getting more severe...

    G.M. has said its cash reserves are falling by more than $2 billion a month, and the company has hired bankruptcy advisers, including Harvey R. Miller of the firm Weil Gotshal & Manges. Chrysler is a private company, but its sales are falling faster than any other company in the industry, and has acknowledged it will run out of money soon, too.

    Many of their suppliers are teetering on the verge of bankruptcy themselves, and do not have the luxury of extending credit much longer.

    “I don’t think that suppliers will be able to get through the month without continued payments on their receivables,” ...

    When suppliers big and small start failing, the flow of parts to every automaker in the country will be disrupted because as suppliers typically sell their products to both American and foreign brands with plants in the United States.

    “There’s no question it will hit Toyota, Honda and Nissan too,” ...

    “Many of the small suppliers will simply liquidate because they don’t have the resources to go reorganize in Chapter 11 bankruptcy,” Mr. Casesa said. “They’ll just go away.”

    It is the dire scene laid out at the first set of Congressional hearings on an auto bailout in mid-November by Ford’s chief executive, Alan R. Mulally.
    “Should one of our domestic competitors declare bankruptcy, the effect on Ford’s production operations would be felt within days, if not hours,” Mr. Mulally said. He has said his company has enough cash to last through 2009...

    In years past, suppliers have often been able to assist a troubled automaker by extending payment periods to get through tough times.

    But by Mr. De Koker’s estimation, hundreds of suppliers no longer have that flexibility. They cannot borrow money in a frozen credit market, and they cannot buy raw materials without first being paid for parts they already shipped.

    While G.M., Ford and Chrysler employ 239,000 people in the United States, the country’s 3,000 or so auto suppliers have more than 600,000 workers...

    “Most of the suppliers are not highly waged; they have no big pensions,” Mr. Leuliette said. “People affected by all this are just the average Joes. Washington has a myopic view of the auto industry. They just think of the Big Three and don’t think of us.”

    Suppliers make most of the 15,000 parts that go into a single car. More than 70 percent of a car’s value — from the seats to the chassis, from the electronics to the bumpers — are sold to the automakers by suppliers.

    Since 2004, the supplier workforce has fallen by 23 percent from 783,000...

    “For suppliers there is no place to go, no place to hide,” Mr. Leuliette said. “The automakers are not paying, so we have to carry them. They are forcing the suppliers to loan money to Ford and G.M. Until G.M., Ford and Chrysler are viewed as financially stable, the worldwide spigot is turned off to suppliers.”

    Mr. Leuliette said that he has worked through five previous downturns in the auto industry, but the difference with this one is the lack of bank lending...
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  8. #68  
    Quote Originally Posted by daThomas View Post
    If the republicans kill this they may be signing their own death certificate as a party. They will never see another Reagan-Democrat vote for at least a generation.
    And rightfully so....
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  9. #69  
    Quote Originally Posted by car_designer View Post
    personally, I think customer satisfaction has a lot to do with the dealer-customer interaction, which sadly, we don't have a whole lot of direct control.

    a note on perceptions: we took a future vehicle and did a customer clinic on it. we then replaced the badging with toyota badging inside and out and told customers it was a toyota future vehicle clinic
    we received a significantly more favorable response.


    I have only owned american cars my whole life. I buy, properly maintain and keep 'em till about 150k before I sell them. out of the ten or so vehicles I have owned, I had only one that had a major repair (transmission). I had a 1983 dodge reliant K car that had 226k on it before I sold it because it started to smoke heavily. I drive a 2004 F-150 and have had no big problems, just normal wear and maintainence items: brake pads, tail light bulb and I just replaced the battery. it has 88k on it and I plan on keeping it at least till 150k miles.

    the auto industry slowdown is already affecting us in a big way. lots of foreclosed homes in our subdivision. there is a small home repo a few blocks away that the bank is asking 20k for. do a realtor.com property search in detroit and you will be amazed at all the bank owned prooperties for sale at low prices.
    Interesting... was that an internal study or is that available on the web someplace?

    Obviously if someone sees a Honda emblem on a car, they would equate that to something positive (if they are so inclined). But I doubt if anyone would see a car like the dodge charger with a honda emblem and think that was a cool honda... they would say that looks like an american car. lol

    I think it also goes a bit deeper... I wanted a ford mustang... tested the new one a while ago, and the dash looked cheap... the fit and finish was not up to par (IMO). The plastic looked cheap and felt cheap.

    On the other hand, it drove nicely. The new Honda accord coupe V6 drove like it had about a ton of bricks on the front wheels. I have a 4 cyl so that might have been the problem.

    But perceptions can go a long way.... the only way I see around that is to have a plan that spans two decades to get back on track. The issue you speak will not be solved in five years... Honda/toy/nis (to a degree) been massaging their image for over thirty years.
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  10. #70  
    Interesting... was that an internal study or is that available on the web someplace?

    Obviously if someone sees a Honda emblem on a car, they would equate that to something positive (if they are so inclined). But I doubt if anyone would see a car like the dodge charger with a honda emblem and think that was a cool honda... they would say that looks like an american car. lol
    Internal and it was a future vehicle that a customer would not have recognized unless they were really good at identifying brand styling cues. To your point, you would not have known it was a Dodge Charger because there was no such thing as a Dodge Charger (not released) at the time of the clinic.

    I think it also goes a bit deeper... I wanted a ford mustang... tested the new one a while ago, and the dash looked cheap... the fit and finish was not up to par (IMO). The plastic looked cheap and felt cheap.
    Time to look at the all new 2010 Mustang. Its an incredible vehicle, inside and out. Highly refined muscle. The best Mustang ever.

    http://www.fordvehicles.com/the2010mustang/
    Last edited by car_designer; 12/12/2008 at 05:02 PM. Reason: Spelling Error
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  11. #71  
    Quote Originally Posted by car_designer View Post
    Internal and it was a future vehicle that a customer would not have recognized unless they were really good at identifying brand styling cues. To your point, you would not have known it was a Dodge Charger because there was no such thing as a Dodge Charger (not released) at the time of the clinic.
    Thanks for the additional information... would be easy for me to state that I would have known... but more than likely I would have taken the clinic on blind faith and believed it was a honda or toyota sitting in front of me due to the badging. Can't say I'm that good at identifying brand styling cues... lol... would like to be able to make that claim though.

    Time to look at the all new 2010 Mustang. Its an incredible vehicle, inside and out. Highly refined muscle. The best Mustang ever.

    http://www.fordvehicles.com/the2010mustang/
    I am in the market for a new vehicle, but I think I'm going small suv this time around. While I love the 34 mpg I get with my honda, I'm needing more space for my business and when I have other people in the car (for example, my parents are getting elderly and I hate how hard it is for them to get out my car... even if they don't complain).
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  12. #72  
    Quote Originally Posted by theog View Post
    I am in the market for a new vehicle, but I think I'm going small suv this time around. While I love the 34 mpg I get with my honda, I'm needing more space for my business and when I have other people in the car (for example, my parents are getting elderly and I hate how hard it is for them to get out my car... even if they don't complain).
    Why not get a large station wagon instead?, more space than a small SUV and less loss due to the 4WD system..

    My Saab 9-5 station with 1.9 TiD engine easily gets above 34 MPG and has more space than you could use
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  13. #73  
    Quote Originally Posted by ToolkiT View Post
    Why not get a large station wagon instead?, more space than a small SUV and less loss due to the 4WD system..

    My Saab 9-5 station with 1.9 TiD engine easily gets above 34 MPG and has more space than you could use
    I'd want a station waggon about as much as I'd want to be moderator of a large forum again. Thanks... but no thanks!

    Seriously, I like he "feel" of the small suv. I grew up in trucks, so that may be part of my issue. I'd always wanted to "go larger and taller." To be dead honest, I don't like the way a station wagon looks... I'd more than likely do a mini van before a wagon.

    Although, the dodge wagon is kick ****... http://www.dodge.com/en/2008/magnum/

    When I say small suv, I'm talking suv and cross over....
    Last edited by theog; 12/18/2008 at 11:30 AM.
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  14. #74  
    in that case have you looked at the Subaru Forester?
    I had 2 of those and absolutely loved them..

    Not very frugal, but compared to an SUV they are
    And they handle great, both on and offroad..
    If you get the 2.5litre turbo you can even out-drag the Nissan 350Z (but it drinks petrol like there is no tomorrow in urban driving, not too bad on the open road though..)

    just out of curiosity why dont you like station wagons/estates?
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  15. #75  
    Quote Originally Posted by ToolkiT View Post
    in that case have you looked at the Subaru Forester?
    I had 2 of those and absolutely loved them..

    Not very frugal, but compared to an SUV they are
    And they handle great, both on and offroad..
    If you get the 2.5litre turbo you can even out-drag the Nissan 350Z (but it drinks petrol like there is no tomorrow in urban driving, not too bad on the open road though..)

    just out of curiosity why dont you like station wagons/estates?
    I would more than likely do a Rav4. I've never been a subaru fan... but I can't say I ever drove one either.

    I don't like the "look" of wagons/estates. Don't know "why." I just don't like them... Personally, I'd "love" to need an Escalade. I can afford one, but can't justify it for the world... it would be something that would be nothing more than "look at me, I can afford this... and waste money... I don't care." lol I'm not that flashy. Then again, an Escalade might be TOO big.

    I've driven a Ford Exployer and thought that was very nice... the seat felt like I was in a Captain's chair. The power was smooth.

    What I'd *really* like to do is buy a plain white work van and have the inside customized. lol

    Will the turbo take the new 370z? http://www.nissanusa.com/370z

    Ahh.... if I were only 20 years younger with my current income.

    Buy it now, it would be a midlife crisis. Heck, even I would question my sanity.

    I could get away with a vett though.
    Last edited by theog; 12/18/2008 at 03:03 PM.
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  16.    #76  
    just when you think things can get no worse ...


    ... junior decides to think, to use his great analytical powers to strategize about this economy that he's done so well for up till now. To allow the car companies to go bankrupt -- in an "orderly" fashion -- rather than use any of the precious $700 billion he's already wasted.

    Lending the car companies $14- 25 billion is too much if it means forestalling their collapse, if it means enabling them to struggle on until Obama and his team have a chance to revive them.

    No -- its better to bring everything down, to complete his utter devestation of america -- presumably this is all in furtherance of bringing us closer to the end times, the rapture ...


    Car Bankruptcy Cited as Option by White House
    By DAVID E. SANGER, BILL VLASIC and MICHELINE MAYNARD NYTimes
    December 18, 2008

    The White House raised for the first time on Thursday the prospect of forcing General Motors and Chrysler into a managed bankruptcy as a solution to save the companies from financial collapse.

    President Bush’s spokeswoman, Dana Perino, confirmed growing speculation within legal circles that the president and Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr. were considering the step.

    “There’s an orderly way to do bankruptcies that provides for more of a soft landing,” Ms. Perino said. “I think that’s what we would be talking about. That would be one of the options.”...

    After the White House raised the possibility of a bankruptcy, G.M.’s shares fell to $3.66...

    G.M. declined to comment on the Bush administration’s suggestion that an “orderly bankruptcy” was under consideration. But the company was surprised by the White House statements, according to G.M. officials who asked not to be identified because the discussions with the administration were not yet final.

    The automaker’s senior executives have said repeatedly that bankruptcy was not a viable solution because consumers would be reluctant to buy a vehicle from a bankrupt automaker.

    In July, CNW Marketing Research said a survey it conducted showed that 80 percent of prospective car buyers would not consider purchasing a vehicle from a bankrupt company. A more recent survey found that 51 percent of the people it interviewed said they would not buy a car from G.M. even if it received a government bailout.

    “G.M. cannot afford to lose half of its prospective customers,” said Art Spinella, CNW’s president...
    Last edited by BARYE; 12/19/2008 at 04:42 AM.
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  17. #77  
    Uh... didn't W just agree to a temp loan to hold the big 3 over?

    BARYE... you say you do not own a car? Then it's all your fault!

    Go out there today and buy 3; one each from Chrysler, GM, and Ford!
    It's your patriotic duty!

    Working in the steel industry, my dad always bought American.
    It made sense at the time, sort of job security. Then his daughter (my sis) dated and married a guy who fixed Volkswagens. That was hard for him to swallow.

    Then many "American" cars started being built elsewhere. He was ticked when he found out my Chevy Chevette was made in Canada. Then foreign cars started being made in the good 'ole USofA by Americans.

    So, does it matter anymore? He never was a Union fan, so there is no incentive to enable greedy union bosses when Honda pays well. As to the arguement that the profits are going to the J.A.Pan Company, well is that any worse than the profits going to greedy American car tycoons who fly in on private jets to ask for money? I'd like to buy American, but it is harder to do so for almost anythng, let alone cars.

    Full disclosure: My recent cars have included 2 Kias (Sportage & current Sedona) and before that a Suzuki Samurai (Couldn't afford a "real Jeep" at the time). Had some used US cars in the past, but haven't bought a new one since that old Chevette, which wasn't American after all. I wish I could afford a Ford Sport-trac, or something similar, as my next vehicle. Even an F-150 may be too big for what I need, but I need something to haul stuff with if my Sedona minivan dies.

    Do we NEED a big 3? How about a big 2?
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  18.    #78  
    Quote Originally Posted by duanedude1 View Post
    Uh... didn't W just agree to a temp loan to hold the big 3 over?

    BARYE... you say you do not own a car? Then it's all your fault!

    Go out there today and buy 3; one each from Chrysler, GM, and Ford!
    It's your patriotic duty!

    Working in the steel industry, my dad always bought American.
    It made sense at the time, sort of job security. Then his daughter (my sis) dated and married a guy who fixed Volkswagens. That was hard for him to swallow.

    Then many "American" cars started being built elsewhere. He was ticked when he found out my Chevy Chevette was made in Canada. Then foreign cars started being made in the good 'ole USofA by Americans.

    So, does it matter anymore? He never was a Union fan, so there is no incentive to enable greedy union bosses when Honda pays well. As to the arguement that the profits are going to the J.A.Pan Company, well is that any worse than the profits going to greedy American car tycoons who fly in on private jets to ask for money? I'd like to buy American, but it is harder to do so for almost anythng, let alone cars.

    Full disclosure: My recent cars have included 2 Kias (Sportage & current Sedona) and before that a Suzuki Samurai (Couldn't afford a "real Jeep" at the time). Had some used US cars in the past, but haven't bought a new one since that old Chevette, which wasn't American after all. I wish I could afford a Ford Sport-trac, or something similar, as my next vehicle. Even an F-150 may be too big for what I need, but I need something to haul stuff with if my Sedona minivan dies.

    Do we NEED a big 3? How about a big 2?
    Ya junior has finally offered some aid.

    But the damage has largely been done by now anyway. I doubt they will long survive without really massive help and deep restructuring.

    Like with interest rates on mortgages -- they have after more than 18 months of the housing crisis begun to force down mortgage rates -- but genuine deep unrecoverable damage and scarring has already been done.

    I don't own a car -- my own mortgage is a 30 year fixed at a decent rate -- I don't live in a part of the country where the collapse of the auto comapnies is going to have a measurable impact, my income is not in anyway connected to the car business. I'm not a member of a union -- if I owned a car it very likely would not come from the big 3.

    In a perfect world maybe I would even prefer to obliterate car companies and cars that run on oil.

    My interest in helping these companies is because of how important they are to the national economy -- a national economy that is on the precipice of a new national depression.

    I understand enough to appreciate the intersecting connections of these companies and other far flung parts of this economy -- how so much of their debt and obligations are already indirectly insured by the american public -- how banks would be crushed if the value of debt and bonds of these companies would become worthless, how these companies already owe billions to the parts suppliers, to their sub contractors etc etc -- all of which is unsecured debt, all of which might be wiped away in a default.

    The consequences of letting these companies fail is incalcuable.

    But letting them hang slowly, slowly, in the wind for these last few months has almost made their failing inevitable.
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  19. #79  
    What's really scary is that the automotive industry is probably just the starting/tipping point. I can only imagine all the other industries that are just on the verge of imploding.
  20.    #80  
    Quote Originally Posted by car_designer View Post
    What's really scary is that the automotive industry is probably just the starting/tipping point. I can only imagine all the other industries that are just on the verge of imploding.
    yes so much scarring, permanent damage, and destruction has already happened. Industries, communities, people far from the epicenters of this calimity are inevitably being sucked inexorably into the irresistable gravity of its mawing black hole.

    The NYTimes wrote a lengthy article a couple of days ago outlining many of the various way points in how we've gotten here -- and junior's innumerable contributions to this catastrophe. I will try to post something on it later.

    There was a time when intelligent intervention could have prevented or at least mitigated most of the widespread collapse we're experiencing -- a time when (as I wrote more than a year ago), they could still catch up to the rolling grand piano.

    But sadly we had a bozo as president, one who was clueless as to what he had done -- and what needed to be undone. One who didn't understand the problems his policies had created, nor the interconnectedness of the various parts of the ecomomy -- or just about anything.

    Astonishing how much damage one man can do to a great nation in only 8 years.

    Astonishing...
    Last edited by BARYE; 12/25/2008 at 04:20 PM.
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