Other Editorials

Red Ink Rick

Robert Farago
Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Watching Rick Wagoner is like listening to some weird ass fairy tale: the Emperor's New Car Company. Only no one's saying Wagoner's buck naked (present company excluded) and GM isn't new, it's old. As my father says, the only thing worse than getting old is the alternative. GM under Wagoner's administration seems Hell bent on exploring the alternative. Did you know that GM's market cap has shrunk by two-thirds since Wagoner assumed control? Did you know that the only reason the American automaker isn't 't in worse shape is that Wagoner sold EVERYTHING? Wagoner knows that and more, 'cause he's an accountant. In fact, Wagoner was GM's Chief Financial Officer (CFO) before he ascended to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) spot. And now he's chosen his CFO to be GM's new CEO; only he's calling Fritz the new COO, 'cause, well, he's still CEO. So here we have not one but TWO beancounters at the top of GM. Who've let a nutcase named Bob Lutz (winner of TTAC's Bob Lutz award) decide what kind of cars to build. At a time when their North American market share is slipping, slipping, slipping& into the future because, and let's be Frank here, the company forgot how to build competitive cars. Or price them. Or brand them. Or advertise them Or& Doh! Anyway, as long as Wagoner's at the top of GM, you can be sure of one thing: someone somewhere will be cooking the books.