Hooray for Anti-Competition!

GM TahoeA common fiscal conservative (free market) viewpoint is: if any company is run badly, they deserve to fail to competitors who run their businesses better. By applying this to GM, we can deduce that since they have failed to compete (pumping out SUVs well into a downtrend), they should fail. That’s what you’re not hearing from the mainstream media these days. Instead you are hearing about unions, healthcare and a need to shove the blame on employees (something the entire U.S. auto industry has to deal with, including Toyota, Nissan and Honda).

The nationalist froth is coming out too, as the age-old phrase “buy American” is becoming the renewed mantra of the protectionist. Even Toyota, fearing a backlash from flag-waving American consumers (who are too idiotic to realize that the Toyota they buy in America was built by American workers), has announced they will raise prices in order to let GM compete with them.

To make matters worse, GM laid off 25,000 employees — about a fifth of it’s workforce — and decided to “compete” too late in the game by offering the employee discount to everyone in America. Does anyone else find the irony in that 25,000 employee discounts are already guaranteed moot. Maybe if they sell 25,000 Hummers, that will make up the difference, though I doubt it.

Personally, I own a previous model Pontiac Grand Am, which I am not terribly enthusiastic about due to various mechanical issues and annoyances that crop up periodically, and didn’t have plans to by another GM because of the problems I’ve had with this car. And now, any hope I had of buying a Toyota is shot to hell until this anti-competitive fiasco is over. Great job corporate geniuses, instead of encouraging consumer spending, they just killed it for potential Toyota buyers.

What’s next? Mobile phone companies raising prices because the local phone company isn’t getting enough revenue from land-lines? Import duties so that American companies can stay open a little longer? Just more pissing in the global economy wind for another decade until wages and cost of living finally hit a wall they can’t climb over with legislative help.

Shame on GM’s executives for planning for the short term, and shame on Toyota for succumbing to irrational nationalistic fervor. Let GM fail (or downsize) with dignity, and let Americans buy other cars at competitive prices if they choose.

» Costs of health care drag America down [SFGate.com]
» Our view: ‘Buy American’ law is unpatriotic [Tonawanda News]
» Toyota may raise U.S. auto prices [Union Tribune]
» GM Employee Discount for Everyone [GM.com]
» SUV sales start to slow down [Patriot News]

Stephen VanDyke

I've published HoT along with about 300+ friends since 2002. We're all Americans who are snarky and love our country. I'm a libertarian that registered Republican because I like to win elections. That's pretty much it.

  1. Toyota won’t be raising prices, they just offered it. I think it was probably a joke at GM’s expense.

    I heard on the radio, of the 25,000, only like 8000 are actually being fired, the rest are normal employee attrition.

    also, in case you haven’t noticed, pretty much all American companies think the 4 year term and nothing longer, which is why most are doing poorly, they’re trading short term stock prices for long term solvency. Management types don’t care about long term solvency, they just want to come in, make a killing and leave with a nice package and let the next guy clean up his mess. the next guy comes in, cleans up that mess, starts another mess and leaves with a nice package, the cycle continues on forever while the employees and customers get screwed.

    welcome to the new economy.