GM Asks FAA to Remove Tracking on Company Jets

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago

Like any good scandal, Jet-gate threatens to unfold like a wedding napkin. As TTAC pointed-out when Alan Mulally was hired, Ford’s $25m p.a. CEO’s perks include free, non-business-related jet travel for his wife and family. And now Bloomberg reports that GM has asked aviation regulators to block the public’s ability to track The General’s squadron of Gulfstream jets. “We availed ourselves of the option as others do to have the aircraft removed” from a Federal Aviation Administration tracking service, Greg Martin, told Bloomberg. The spinmeister “declined to discuss why GM made the request.” Which raises one important question: what are they hiding? To be charitable, we could take GM’s previous statements about CEO Rick Wagoner’s personal security needs seriously. Other than that, we can invoke Bertel Schmitt’s (TTAC’s man in China) reports that The People’s Republic are ready to talk turkey with GM about a Chinese buyout/rescue plan. Perhaps Wagoner plans on hopping the Pacific to do the dirty on his detractors. One also wonders if this tracking thing works backwards; have GM execs been partying like it’s 1999? Has Rick been stashing wads of cash off-shore? Anyone know how UAW Gettelfinger got to Washington?

Robert Farago
Robert Farago

More by Robert Farago

Join the conversation
4 of 17 comments
  • Ronnie Schreiber Ronnie Schreiber on Nov 27, 2008

    Meanwhile, Citigroup, you know the company that we just gave $45 billion to plus underwrote up to $306 billion of their losses has yet to cut back on perks for former executives, let alone Vikram Pandit and other current execs:

    As for his retirement nest egg, it is all but solid gold. After earning nearly $1 billion in salary, bonuses and options that he cashed in over the last decade, [Sanford] Weill will receive a pension worth more than $1 million a year. Under a 10-year consulting contract with Citigroup, he will earn a daily rate of $3,846 for dispensing advice for up to 45 days a year. Citigroup will also cover the costs of a car and driver; health and life insurance for him and his wife, Joan; and rent for an office in the General Motors Building. Weill will continue to fly at no charge on Citigroup jets for the next 10 years.
  • Landcrusher Landcrusher on Nov 27, 2008

    Any plane owner can make this request, and it's not a bad idea. Information on where the planes go can be used by people to the disadvantage of the company. Why they didn't make the request a few months ago when the program started is the real story. We all got a letter informing us how to keep our planes off of the net. Of course, they could have pulled a volkswagen, sent the planes somewhere to fool the hedge funds, and then bet against them. Might as well go with Netjets or similar company at this point.

  • Ronnie Schreiber Ronnie Schreiber on Nov 27, 2008

    volvo, how do I find out the tail numbers for Citigroup's planes?

  • Ronnie Schreiber Ronnie Schreiber on Nov 27, 2008
    @factotum, if you want to be in management in the auto industry, move to Gross Point - or Bloomfield Hills or Birmingham (MI), but don’t do the armchair quarterback management thing. That’s for commies ( you know, collectivists whose stake is risk and reward free). That's Grosse Pointe I don't know how many auto execs live in Birmingham, some I'm sure, but Bloomfield Hills has always been popular, particularly with GM guys because of proximity to GM facilities in Pontiac. I'm sure some live in Franklin as well. Ford folks, I hear, prefer the Pointes (Edsel & Eleanor's estate is on the north end of Lakeshore Dr. maybe technically in Saint Claire Shores), Grosse Isle or some of the wealthier parts of the western Wayne County suburbs. Bill Ford Jr. lives in the Ann Arbor area where his kids go to public school. From the real estate listing of his old house (he moved to a different home in the same neighborhood) which says it has water frontage and a Huron River view, my guess is Barton Hills.