So I haven’t been doing regular updates to my blog/devlog. Does that make me irregular?
First of all, I’d like to comment on the recent situation in the ‘states concering the automotive industry. For those of you who may be living under a rock or in a hole, or driving a Toyota Prius, wearing Burkenstocks, eating organic brocolli and combing the beaches, the situaton in the US automotive industry isn’t pretty. GM, in more or less a plead for financial help announced today that they were only months away from bankrupcy. Chrysler hasn’t been doing so hot, and Ford announced yet another quarter of multi-million dollar losses. There’s been a fair bit of discussion on how to fix the problem. Apparently there was also a recent announcement of a bailout as well. So does that mean if I own a multi-billion dollar company, and drive it into the ground I can go ask Uncle Sam to come bail me out of the grave I dug for myself? Apprently so.
Here’s my take on how to fix things:
1. Require that all CEOs, board members, and any higher-ups in the companies have their salaries and severence packages reduced to $1/year. If they don’t like it, they are free to leave (with $1 severence).
2. Dispatch the UWA, and any other unions. We aren’t living in the 19th century, and working conditions are pretty dang good. Inflated wages get passed on to the cost of the vehicle. Do you want to pay more for a car so that some slack-jawed yokel can get paid $40/hour to press buttons on a machine that stamps out radiator brackets? I don’t.
3. Trim the fat on the product lines. Get rid of any vehicles that aren’t selling. Tahoe hybrid, I’m looking at you. Same with pretty much anything produced by Mercury, and half the stuff produced by Pontiac, Saturn, Oldsmobile, and Buick.
4. Ease of on emission regulations for a period of at least one year, allowing manufacturers to bring similar European models to North America. Ford makes some pretty fantastic cars that only get sold in Europe. Why? Emissions restrictions on diesels. I like the thought of getting 62+ MPG in a Ford Fiesta diesel. Wait, I can’t do that because of emissions regulations.
5. Consolidate plants. Instead of having two factories producing near-identical models built on the same platform, stuff it all into one big factory. Given the number of closed plants, I don’t think finding a suitable location to do something like that should be a problem.
That should definitely help the situation. Painful? Yes. Long-term? More or less. Instead of whining to Daddy every time you want a new toy or run up the Visa, how about you actually fix the problem and learn to manage a business properly, meaning you actually make money instead of spending it.
On a completely different note, I recently had a chance to play with Lidgren, a C# networking library. It’s fairly simple to use and seems quite slick. I think I might try to do more with it in the coming weeks (given that I actually get around to doing some programming).
So there is your irregular update. Enjoy.