Bailout Watch 178: CNBC Credibility Meltdown
I like Phil LeBeau. Sweetheart of a guy. He talks to TTAC’s Ken Elias on a regular basis. But I’m not so convinced about Mssr. LeBeau’s journalistic cojones. In the first post-GM quarterly statement TV interview with Rick Wagoner, LeBeau asked GM CEO’s the tough question: is there any point at which you say fuck that shit, we’re out of cash, I’m heading for Aruba, YOU file for C11? [paraphrasing]. But Phil forgot to go for the kill and/or (we hear) ask Wagoner to share some of his private stash. Now that the Detroit Bailout has become Germanicized (caps) and gets its own logo (the sure sign of sexual maturity for any story in the MSM), Phil is on the case– although not the case of the CEOs responsible for this Donnybrook…
“• Executives fired?
I doubt that will happen, nor do I think it should. Oh I know some of you will e-mail and say, ‘Hey, the Treasury department should boot these guys and bring in others to run these companies.’ Rick Wagoner, Alan Mulally and Bob Nardelli have been cutting and pushing their companies to restructure. This crisis has been brought on by the perfect storm of circumstances, not by recklessness by the suits in Detroit. Are they guilty of perhaps not moving faster? Yes. Those are mistakes, but not criminal actions.”
Free market meet Phil. Phil meet… Phil? Phil? “As my friend Detroit Mike told me this morning, ‘Dude, this is one messed up situation Washington needs to fix.’ You’re right Mike. So very right.”
And you Phil– and Washington and Detroit Mike– are wrong to apply a “one size fits all” solution on this bad boy. So very wrong.
Edgett on Nov 13, 2008
To put Mulally and Wagoner in the same category is a grievous insult to Mr. Mulally. Wagoner has been sucking the GM hog dry for his entire career, has been Commander in Chief since 2000 while Mulally was brought in to fix the problem. Wagoner belongs in jail for the equity damage done to GM. In Mulally's case, it may be that he was brought in to Captain the Titanic after it had already hit the iceberg, but he seems to be making a valiant effort. If a bailout materializes, I'd suggest a combined GM/Ford/Chrysler corporation run by Mulally. He has now had a glimpse behind the curtain of Detroit but has not been there so long that he has been tainted. Any executive in the combined company who has an accounting, PR, "Brand Management", Marketing or legal background should be shown the door and let the manufacturing and engineering people do their jobs.
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