Bailout Watch 7: Will Ford Bailout Go Up In a Flash of Genius?

Ignorance is a bankable commodity. When Bear Stearns stepped-up to the federal begging bowl, the average U.S. taxpayer had no idea who the Hell they were, why they needed money, and whether or not they should get it. Still doesn't. But if/when Ford eventually asks Uncle Sam to open your purse, it may not have what you'd call a winning plot line. Ford's good will with the public has often gone up in smoke (Pinto) or rolled over and died (Explorer). There's another PR debacle looming over the horizon: Flash of Genius. The movie paints a bleak moral picture of the artist once known as the inventor of the working class hero-mobile. We'll be sure to explore whether or not it's accurate in future posts. Meanwhile, make no mistake: it doesn't matter. Except that it does. And will. [thanks to katiepuckrick for the tip]

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  • Hwyhobo Hwyhobo on Jul 27, 2008
    Ford's good will with the public has often gone up in smoke (Pinto) or rolled over and died (Explorer). Just to keep score, despite the brouhaha in the media about the rollovers, Explorer remained a best-selling vehicle. You can start sensationalized stories only so many times. Remember Audi? Remember the faked Chevy truck gas tank explosion? Public finally catches on.

  • Adam Adam on Jul 27, 2008

    That "Flash of Genius" trailer is super depressing. Even more so when one recalls all the TV and print ads over the years where the D2.8 slather their product in the flag and traditional values such as truth, justice, and the American Way.

  • 50merc 50merc on Jul 27, 2008

    Let's be cautious about absorbing morality tales from Hollywood. Often the depiction of heroes and villains is badly skewed by the moviemakers' own ideologies. (The recent film about the origins of the anti-slavery movement, "Amazing Grace," is a splendid exception.) My theory is that movie people like to depict capitalism as thoroughly evil because their own industry is the most amoral on earth. The article to which Happy_Endings linked informs us that the battle with Ford involved some areas for reasonable disagreement. Nevertheless, "Flash of Genius" sounds a familiar note because students of automotive history, such as our friend Menno, will recall that Ford has a history of unwillingness to give proper credit for contributions. C. Harold Wills had a lot more to do with development of the Model T than old Henry. Similarly, Harold Hicks was instrumental in engineering the Model A but was treated shabbily. Ah, well, the world also thinks Bill Gates invented MS-DOS.

  • Capeplates Capeplates on Jul 28, 2008

    Hollywood - more like Bollywood - Ford are existing on borrowed time unless a major overhaul of there products design is undertaken