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March 31, 2009 7:46AM

Hey Obama Administration: What About Ford?

By Eric Bolling

Drastic times call for drastic measures.

With billions of TARP dollars being tossed to GM, interim CEO Fritz Henderson today said that they need to change big and change fast. My guess is that they will cut brands and “lines” (models within the brand). I would recommend that they keep Cadillac and Chevrolet and let the rest go to the junkyard in the sky. Bye, see ya later, alligator, sayonara… You cannot compete with so many different makes and models. The bailed-out auto maker should focus its marketing dollars and design talent toward the two relatively successful brands already within GM domestic.

Chrysler is majority owned by Cerberus Capital, a hedge fund. It still infuriates me that a hedge fund is the ultimate beneficiary of my tax dollars. Cerberus, for those who have forgotten, bought Chrysler in a move of financial bravado. They overpaid massively, but justified it by claiming Chrysler was an American brand that would thrive. Thrive it did not — and now our tax dollars are bailing out a hedge-fund bet gone bad.

What has been lost in all this? The fate of the one U.S. car manufacturer that has done things right: Ford. With billions of dollars of free money being thrown at GM and Chrysler, Ford has been placed at a competitive disadvantage. While Ford is still paying high fees to service its debt the old fashion way, its major competitors GM and Chrysler are receiving free cash to shore up their businesses.

Think of it as a neighborhood where homeowner Ford is making its high-rate mortgage payments on time while you and me are paying for neighbors GM’s and Chrysler’s mortgages. Ridiculous, isn’t it?

Where are you, Obama administration? Why aren’t you pointing out that Ford is doing things right? Why aren’t you arranging deals for Ford internationally?

I am doing this, will you join me to promote Ford as the one U.S. auto that is actually doing things right …

 

41 Responses to “Hey Obama Administration: What About Ford?”

  • TMR says:

    I read that you are going to buy a Ford 150 if they don’t take bailout money. I am in the market for a new car. I will also get behind you and Ford, and buy a Ford when you do if they take no bailouts. Good for Ford. C’mon Obama, give credit, not money, where credit is due! Good job, Bolling.

  • Simon says:

    Ford could come out being in the role of hero in this whole bailout mess. I join you in saluting a REAL American company with REAL American values.

  • Shawn says:

    Now why is it Ford was able to renegotiate their UAW contracts but the sorry Big 2 cannot get anything done but live off welfare? Come on!! If GM and/or Chrysler fail it will costs jobs sure (in the short run), but Ford, Honda, Toyota, Nissan, VW etc. will be in need of experienced workers as they will be compteting for the maret share vacated by either (or both) GM or Chrylser. So way to go Ford!!! I hope it pays big dividends for you in the end.

  • K B says:

    As with everything else the government has done recently: Reward the reckless and punish the prudent! So, what else is new?

  • bob says:

    The next time I decide to purchase a new vehicle, I will look at Ford first. I will not buy from a company that depends on government bailouts.

  • Scott Bourne says:

    I got a new Ford just the other day.
    I love my FORD EDGE
    It has the most comfortable seats I have ever had in a vehicle.
    Cerberus hedge fund owns other hedge funds.
    If you dig into them they owned several foriegn banks.
    I was real unhappy with them recieving my money.
    I took a position with a company in Wichita, KS.
    Shortly after ariving and working the company OPTIMA BUS was bought out by NABI who
    was owned by Cerberus. THey fired every contract designer and soon fired all and moved
    all the operations to Alabma.
    It sucked having to look for work a couple months after taking a new job.
    That so called hedge fund company is evil to the core from what I can tell.
    If you go to their main web site there is a lot of companies they have money into that
    I refuse to do business with.
    Remember some on this list are other hedge fund companies also owning others
    AerCap Aviation Solutions
    Albertson’s LLC
    Annexus
    Aozora Bank Ltd.
    ATC Group Services, Inc.
    Bank Leumi
    BAWAG P.S.K.
    Blue Bird
    BlueLinx
    boxclever
    Chrysler
    CML International Holdings, LLC
    CTA Acoustics
    Four Points Media
    GMAC Financial Services
    GSW Berlin GmbH
    Guilford Mills
    Handel und Kredit Bankhaus
    IAP Worldwide Services
    Inovis
    Kokusai Kogyo KK
    LNR Property Corporation
    NewPage Corporation
    North American Bus Industries
    Rafaella Apparel Group
    Scottish RE
    Showa Jisho Co. Ltd.
    Spyglass Entertainment
    Strategic Restaurant Acquisition Group
    Talecris Biotherapeutics
    Torex Retail Holdings Limited
    Tower Automotive
    Traxis Financial Group

  • Scott Bourne says:

    http://www.cerberuscapital.com/port_comp_pro.html

    here is the website if you want to dig into them on your own

  • Ron says:

    Love my Ford Mustang..Keep up the good work Ford.

  • Tammie says:

    My first new car was a Ford and I’ve driven them ever since. I’ve never been disappointed and will continue to buy Ford if they do not take bailout money.

  • BearGirl says:

    I believe the only reason why Obama is helping GM and Chrysler, is because he will force them to make the green cars the left has been crying for.The government wants to control all aspects of our lives.But Ford is like the majority of Americans that go to work everyday, and pay our bills. We don’t have that entitlement mentality, so in the long run, working Americans and Ford will come out on top, and are the TRUE definition of the American spirit.Bravo to Eric Bolling for writing such a great article, and everyone out there BUY FORD. When buying Ford, you are buying AMERICAN MADE!!

  • Brad says:

    Ford is already running ads that point out their quality is just as good as Toyota and Honda. They should also run ads reminding everyone that they haven’t taken any tax payer money. This could be a huge marketing opportunity and a chance for them to gain market share since GM will now be run like the US post office and the DMV.

  • lonnie says:

    Look at it this way for a second, this country was formed on free enterprise. If a business did a good job and watched its budget, and if they were lucky they could make profits and be competitive with other busines owners. Now Ford has done a reasonably good job of staying out of hot water, but now the government wants to step in and boost up its competition. That is not right! This move might benefit GM and Chrystler, but if I was Ford I would see it as a attack. Why shouldn’t the not so smart business owner go under giving the wiser business the advantage? Does not sound like capatalizm to me.

  • Doug O says:

    Eric

    GM and Chrysler have taken money from the BOSSMAN in the form of a loan. Now the fine print comes to light on a contract made by the Chicago mob. Rick Wagoner has fallen prey to the BOSSMAN from Chicago and is now removed (rubbed out). What is interesting to me is the fact he leaves with a $23,000,000 retirement package. Hope and Change at work. Rick Wagoner hopes to really get the said retirement and maybe change the old retirement package from the Chicago BOSSMAN of concrete boots and a half of boat trip from Detroit to Chicago across Lake Michigan. All kidding aside (or is it).
    Ford has fought it’s way out of several problems and lost business and then restructured and set up loans and financing for the future. Planning and hard work should be rewarded. GM and Chrysler made a big mistake taking the money, Ford may not find recognition from the Chicago BOSSMAN, the American people will reward Ford’s efforts and scorn the rest.

  • BobM says:

    My family had only ford/gm cars 50 years, myself fords 40 years and i’m proud that they haven’t gone the welfare route. How sad the industries which made us great (including the Oil Industry) are demonized by the government and media. Our great country is too precious to be squandered by politicians out for their own means.

  • Bob Y. says:

    I bought a Chevy last year but now I wish I had bought the Ford!

  • Bill G says:

    I turned in my Toyota Highlander a yera ago and purchased a Ford Erge and I love it. I’ve recommended it to all my friends and I was so impressed with Ford I purchased Ford stock. I travel alot I’ve rented the Ford Focus and Fusion both were great cars and fun to drive.As a Ford owner I’m pround they are not taking any Goverment money.

  • jason says:

    Dont buy american garbage. Only buy quality Asian cars!

  • Rick says:

    Any company that continues without the governments help has my support! If Obama wants to run the auto industry; GM is doomed for failure.

  • Andrew G. says:

    I have always been a huge Ford fan!! I have a classic Bronco, a newer Explorer, and a newer F150. It is great to see a company operate a business without relying on anyone else to “bail them out”. I am a small business owner and if I do not make wise choices and I fail I wont receive any help. That’s how it works. Let GM and Chrysler go and if they are not smart enough to stay afloat…bye bye! Ford is all American!!

  • Bob B. says:

    It’s unfortunate that Cerberus is so deeply involved in so many American and foreign companies. My wife is a 26 year employee at GMAC, and she can’t stand it anymore. It’s not the “family friendly” company it once was, and the management team has made working life a shear hell. Cerberus owns 51% of GMAC, with the other 49% still owned by GM, and all of the drastic changes they have made to a once wonderful company to work for, have not been to betterment of the work force. It’s truly ashame because my wife can’t stand going to work any more. Use to be she looked forward to every day, but those days are over. It’s really too bad it had to happen this way.

  • Mike W says:

    Eric, I agree with you that FoMoCo has done what needed to be done to stay away from the bailout money, I wish the pres would say as much about them NOT taking the monet as he does about chevy & chrysler taking the money. You, Eric & Rebecce keep up the good work, i watch you guys whenever i can. You should check out the new Taurus SHO when they hit the market, Sharpe ride, again you 3 keep up the good work & don’t stop tellint it like it is.

  • Bill Markey says:

    I own 5 Fords, 1926 model T Roadster, 1926 model T Touring, 1948 N-8 Tractor, 2000 Expedition XLT, and 2004 F150 Lariot and I love them all. I have been loyal to Ford all of my life. Way to go, don’t take any hand outs. All my Fords have been great cars.

  • HPC says:

    Ford started making the tough decisions years ago and its people stood behind them. Now the difference is clear. The path forward is going to be a challenge but I think they have more of a united culture to get them through. Compare that to GM’s antagonistic corporate culture and the complete lack of what was once an innovatative and responsive culture at Chrysler and the situation really shouldn’t be a surprise.

    Government, the unable to balance the budget, running trillion dollar deficits entity, really is in no position to advice or run any of these Corporations. There was this concept of buying stock in exchange for a voting right which in turn gave you power to elect the board of directors (who hired and fired CEOs) and vote on major corporate decisions, etc. Have the laws in the U.S. change? Did I miss the memo?

  • wdb says:

    I am an engineer that works for a component supplier to most of the worlds auto companies – I have been to most of the design centers. For those of you that think Ford is great, let me tell you how they are getting away with saving so much. They don’t pay their bills! You may wonder how they get away with this? It is because all the suppliers know that if they want to fight any of the car companies, they will get blackballed on future business. Right now Ford is pushing this to the max. I have been in the room when they have told us, your right we owe you the money,if you don’t like it that we are not going to pay, then sue us.

  • Ian says:

    Ford was the first manufacturing auto maker in the United States. Henry Ford invented mass manufacturing (the production line) and was copied across the globe which revolutionized manufacturing. During the real Great Depression in this country Henry Ford turned down money from FDR who wanted to stick his hand in Fords Company. Ford was making money during the depression and actually paid his employees above what was considered minimum wage. I think it is great that the Ford Motor Company is doing the same today. They are taking care of their own problem and not making it mine or yours. How many other Companies in this day and time do the morally correct thing? I wish Ford all the luck and hope they can succeed. ANY TIME THE GOVERNMENT STICKS THEIR HANDS IN ANYTHING IT USUALLY FAILS!!! Just like FDR’s stimulus in the great depression, WWII got us out of the depression.

  • dms says:

    We just bought a Ford because it did not take bailout money.

  • Corey in GA says:

    I think Ford should be commended for not taking federal money, and I agree that the govt support does unfairly assist GM and Chrysler. However, I think the results will be unpleasant for those associated with GM and Chrysler in the long run based on DC intervention.

    It sucks that Ford is (according to wdb) forcing suppliers to deal with unpaid invoices, but I guess that’s what they have to do to compete with companies using much cheaper labor in the southeast. This is why NABI (according to Scott Bourne) was moved to Alabama.

    The pay discrepancy even shows up in unemployment. The unemployment for a friend who moved here from Washington state was $625 (approximately) and he went to the local unemployment office here while looking for work. His unemployment here would have been under $300! ($225, if I recall correctly) The pay discrepancy makes for a nice living among those in the Midwest and other areas, but the bottom line is that workers in the southeast are willing to live on less and have a competitive advantage that employers are starting to see. It’s interesting to note that a Michigan union factory town with unemployment at 35% would (likely) still have a higher per person overall income than a southeastern factory town with 0% unemployment. The wealth would just be (in the words of the Obamination) spread around more.

    At least in these instances the wealth is spread among Americans. (Oops, I forgot about the illegal immigrants!).

  • wdb says:

    Corey, let me enlighten you (and everybody else who is proud to buy Americaon cars) how the auto business really works. The OEM’s, Ford, GM, Toyota, etc, make very few of the components in the vehicle, maybe 10-15%. They still make things like engine blocks and body stampings. For a supplier that ships a part directly to an OEM, they call that a tier 1 supplier. For a company that supplies the component to a tier 1 supplier, they call them a tier 2 supplier, and so on, sometimes the are 5 or more tiers until you get to the company that is getting the material out of the earth. Yes, 100% of it was once in the ground or in the air.

    On the window sticker of every vehicle there are two pieces of information that many people over look, one is the country where the car was assembled, and if it a US assembled vehicle, it’s domestic content. There are many foreign brands that have more domestic content than US brands. – con’t

  • wdb says:

    Now, lets get to the fun part, how the Big 3 have been handling their purchasing decisions for about the last 10 years. The send our their requests for quotes (RFQ’s) to all their traditional suppliers, plus a few isupplier in places like China, & India. The know full well that the don’t intend to give the production order to those companies, but the information the get from the companies outside the US is extremely valuable. Because then what the big three does is send out a target price for the same business that they just received the RFQ responses on. After that they have a non recorded call or meeting with their preferred supplier and tell them: we really want to give you this business but your price is too high you c=have to meet this price we got from China. Now not many American’s know how much a Chinese worker makes, but I can tell you it runs between $0.80 to $1.50 per hour. And sure they get “Health care” from the goverement in China, but you would never want to go there.

    Anyway, the teir one supplier is then left with no choice to either set up shop in China, or source most of the component from their tier suppliers in China to remain competitive.

    So be proud of you 50-75% American car, because even if we save these guys, the percentage of domestic content is going down everyday!

  • Justin says:

    That is way cool that Ford Motor rejected our money to keep afloat. I own a Chevy Silverado but have been very disgusted with the way GM has handled itself, although it still makes sweet vehicles. Way to go Ford for being true to the Free Market!!! You Rule!!!

  • DDV says:

    Ever wonder why x-coe William Ford brought in Allan Mullolly???? He relized that he was incapable of making the chnges neccessary for the company to survive… Very smart move. My family has all worked for the auto manufactures my dad, 35 years at FORD. He is retired now and enjoying it. As well he should. Ford was smart to move aggressively to adjust to changing times. GOOD JOB. I am proud that they have yet to take bailout welfare money as it should be. My first car was a pinto 30 miles to the gallon then (1983). Ford produces excellent cars and trucks. They have the technology to put 45-50 MPH cars on the road here but the governments regulations get in the way. Check out the cool designs that they produce and sell oversee’s(europe) for example and you will be supprised. The government needs to get out of the way of the way of business so that they can compete. GO FORD.

  • No Bailout says:

    My next car will be a Ford, no doubt about it.

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