Bailout Watch 467: PTFOA Appoints "Temporary" GM CEO and Board Chairman

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago
bailout watch 467 ptfoa appoints temporary gm ceo and board chairman

Press reports confirm that GM CEO Rick Wagoner’s hand-picked successor Fritz Henderson will succeed him—temporarily. According to The Wall Street Journal, the Presidential Task Force on Automobiles (PTFOA) sent GM a memo mandating that the company replace Wagoner with Henderson as interim CEO and elevate Board Member Kent Kresa as interim chairman of the board. The clear implication: the PTFOA is now in control of GM at its highest levels and fully intends on restructuring the automaker according to its own strategy. To justify this wholesale assault on free market capitalism, the PTFOA ripped GM’s viability plan to shreds. The Journal reports the ultimate condemnation: “While the Company has made meaningful progress in its turnaround plan over the last few years, the progress has been far too slow, allowing the Company to continue to lag the best-in-class competitors.”

Join the conversation
4 of 14 comments
  • Guyincognito Guyincognito on Mar 30, 2009

    @ johnny ro : "I think Obama team’s statement and decision makes sense. Its all true. They are agreeing point by point with TTAC historical rant. When did something like that ever happen anywhere in US Government before? A commission speaks what makes sense to a highly inflammatory issue, with countless billions at stake, and takes appropriate action? I cannot provide a single example of this happening before. I have 100% faith that any previous administration in 30 years would have done the wrong thing on purpose (republicans) or by getting pushed aside (democrats)." Why is giving GM and Chrysler even more money while acknowledging that it simply to keep them alive until they go under in 60 days a good plan? Why not put them both into CH11 right now? What are these bridge loans for? Do you really believe that Fritz is going to come up with a drastically different and better plan than Rick? Or that the bondholders will swap their debt for equity when they know the equity isn't worth squat? To me this is essentially another punt rather than a decision.

  • Yankinwaoz Yankinwaoz on Mar 30, 2009

    Those companies gave up their rights to keep the government out of their business when they went to Washington demanding access to our tax dollars. Please. Get real. The government should have told them to go file bk back then. But they didn't. And now they (well, we) own them.

  • Wmba Wmba on Mar 30, 2009

    I don't understand your viewpoint here, Robert. It seems 180 degrees out-of-phase with what you have been saying for years. Wagoner is incompetent. The government lent GM billions and said, "have a plan for viability by March 31". It's March 30, and the plan was crap. You've said so many times. Government sees no way to get back its and your money with a plan cynically put forward that was about as thought out as a first-year term paper. Well, if you owe me money, and I decide your plan to pay me back is shit, and you are already effectively bankrupt, then, boy, I WILL insist you get the hell out of the way and let someone else try to run your business and come up with a way to pay me back. Nothing to do with capitalism and other ridiculous comments by people posting here who have hardly ever opened a book and know some real history rather than old wives' tales. Fascism, Socialism comments that betray a complete lack of knowledge on the part of posters here just add to the bewilderment I feel reading this stuff. Celebrate! Wagoner is gone. Good goddam riddance. Your president did the exact right thing. Now, lets see if Fritz can write a plan that actually makes sense in the next 60 days, or whether he's as inept as Wagoner was. If he is, its plain as day -- bankruptcy will happen, because no more of your or my taxpayer money will go to prop up this industrial dinosaur.

  • 928sport 928sport on Mar 30, 2009

    Well just be careful who you sleep with,this should have been done 4 or 5 years ago if not for the spineless GM board members.If you suck off the Government then you get what you ask for,it will no longer be General Motors,we will now call it Government Motors.All this today is just window dressing for the next round of bailout money that will come in June and look for that to be the big one!The tax payer is far from done on this mess,we will get screwed no matter what we do here.Boy it makes me feel better to have the Government back the warranty's, who the hell is going to pay for those? the cost of buying a car from one of these Company's just keeps going up!The answer here for me is just don't buy from these Companys, period.