Auto Company and DOW issues

This morning the DOW dropped to within a few points of its 20 NOV 2009 low. I have been waiting for this. Looking at the graphics since 1970, I see a pattern – I think, where markets find a floor value by probing downward a couple times then advancing up from there. Today’s session low so far is seven points above the close of 7552 on 20 Nov 2008. Could be it is up from here – but maybe not. It will take a few days, for things to really sort themselves out. For the past couple of months the markets have largely been running on empty, hoping for a charging station in the neighborhood. The government has attempted a few things, but before 20 Jan 2009, those efforts were perhaps aimed more at saving the assets of certain big time republican investors, than at actually stopping an economic collapse. Well what else did they do, exactly with the 300 billion – seeing how now it seems to be largely unaccounted for?

In other news the big auto companies, one fresh off the Mercedes divorce, the other still trying to figure out how to get American teens to buy it’s cars again, after snookering their parents in the 1970’s.  GM might have to give all those snookered parents ten times their money back, plus a car that works reliably for several years to get beyond that one. A good start would be to scrap your dealer nets, and sell the cars directly to your customers. Many of the dealers are such scumbags no one ever wants to even talk to them – about anything, including buying your cars, and especially not about repairing them. To fix this train wreck, I suggest you sell the cars direct, give them a full 100K warranty and establish drive thru repair shops similar to the lube shops we find most everywhere, so they can be conveniently serviced and repaired as needed by people who actually know what they are doing. GM if you actually do this you will need to build cars that can actually be repaired easily – which will mean it is easier and faster for me to drive through your shop to have an O2 sensor replaced, than it is to diagnose and fix the problem myself. You will also either need to can the diagnostic fee garbage or seriously slash the cost of parts and labor. Most of us who do our own auto repairs know how much the diagnostic machines actually cost. We also know if you think about it for a bit you can isolate a failure close enough to pinpoint it with the cheapish diagnostic tool – not those mega-billion dollar boxes your dealers have. Ford you have the same problem. My son has a Torus which recently had a spark plug wire problem. The Ford dealer charged him close enough to a hundred bucks to diagnose the problem – which any mechanic can do with a cheap timing light in say two minutes. The final bill from this dealer was over $300 USD to replace ONE spark plug wire. And Ford wants him to buy another American car – like maybe one of theirs – say a FORD – so they can charge him $1800 to replace the plug wires one at a time, starting at maybe 60,000 miles. Ford, you need to have your guys talk to the GM guys about this kind of nonsense and what it does to market share thirty years later.

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