Hundai is a heck of a success story. Near death after selling a bunch of
crappy cars, they turned things completely around in recent years.
Don't give up on Ford or GM they can make a comeback.
IMHO, their fist big step is making cars that appeal to younger people. All
the teens want Hondas and Toyotas and probably continue buying them as they
age. I've worked for the same emplyer for 17 years and know many people
well. If they're not driving a Ford or GM truck, then it is a Toyota, Honda
or Mazda. Many of the US passenger cars are older models. One minor trend is
a couple of new Ford Fusions out in the lot.
I find myself wanting a Toyota Yaris liftback. I find myself needing
something with better mileage for daily driving (I need to keep the truck
for hauling for my side business). Once I again, the American Automakers are
asleep at the wheel. They don't produce anything that compares to the
Yaris/Fit/Scion. Yes GM has the Aveo, but what's with the crappy fuel
mileage? I looked at the Focus, but the design looks tired and boring after
nearly 7 years.
Next there's the Ranger compact truck. A decent, reliable vehicle that
actually has some Japanese hardware in it, but Ford won't redesign years
after it should have been and the "middle" engine is the anemic 3.0L V6 that
gets SUV like gas milege and has less HP than many 4 bangers (like GMs new
model). The 4L V6 is better after they gave it some more power a few years
ago, but the full size truck mileage mumbers stink.
Next there's GM that dumps the compact truck and intruduces a redesigned
"midsized" pickup in the midst of higher gas prices. Fuel economy could be a
bit better and it still gets the solid black dot treatment with CRs
reliability score - just like the crappy S10 it replaced.
Pontiac. Lets build cars that all the models look the same! Let's make the
GTO a family appeal car. RIP new GTO. Sheesh.
Overall, their problem is they are too slow in responding to the marketplace
and seem to clueless in designing cars with appeal.
If you want to level the playing field, then let's have national
health coverage like all the other industrialized countries. Get it
off the back of the corporations. Why should GM have to pay for it
while Honda doesn't?
Hondas employees in the US do not get as good a wage, benefits, including
healthcare, or pensions as do GMs employees. Surely you do not believe that
national health coverage will be free, do you? Why do you think gas cost
$6 or more in Europe and they have a VAT tax? LOL
Excessive taxation slows economic growth. Hence the poor economic growth in
Europe, over the past ten years or so, and the high unemployment rates.
Free medical is anything but free. Surly you do not want the US to emulate
Taxation on petrol has prompted new technology to go away from petrol
and thus promoted smaller cars, bigger trains and better economy
US could do well emulating Europe
Europe has been improving a lot its transport system over the last
decades and not the least because of controlled taxation by taxing
petrol and promoting alternatives
Market economy with lots of interventions by the governments in health
care and unemployment benefits has created a very good balance and a
strong middle class
The high unemployment rates are mainly in former east areas and results
of former centralised controled governments
The production per manhours is much higher in Europe than in the US
The norm is for 6 weeks paid vacations, many countries 35 hour work
weeks, not unusual around 50 year pension schemes
The underground economy where people pay each other without letting the
government know is also quite high so the overall economy is much
better than the official figures show
Unemployed people, people on holidays, medical benefits or pensions are
often working and paid with black money giving extra strenght to the
The US could learn a lot from Europe but they do not because they think
they know it all
Mike Hunter wrote:
Instead of creating a nationwide healthcare system, we oughta shore up
the free market healthcare system in several ways. First, we need more
MD's and nurses, and this can be done by creating more medical colleges
and expanding nursing education programs. Quality of care would go up,
and costs would go way down. Supply and demand. There are few spots
open in medical schools. The difference in credentials between those
getting in and those not getting in are negligable at best. There are
many qualified people who can't get into medical school, because there
are so few spots open. Also nursing. A family friend is a nursing
professor at a university near here. There are way more applicants to
the nursing program than spots open in the program -- about 5 to 1.
There aren't many spots open (even though there's a huge demand for
nurses to the point that some make $50/hour), because there aren't
enough nursing instructors (they'd rather make $50/hour as nurses in the
hospital rather than $20/hour as nursing instructors at a college). We
need to increase funding for nursing instructors so as to train more
nurses. Also, we need to cap these huge medical malpractice jury
awards. Many times, the awards are lopsided. A few victims get the
lion's share of the malpractice dollars available, while others get
nothing due to the malpractice insurance co. going bankrupt. Capping
awards would lower the huge rates that doctors have to pay. All of
these measures WOULD lower medical cost and increase the level of time a
physician could spend with their patients, and overall improve the
Everyone who want to lower health care cost in the US should write to their
Senators and ask them to vote to stop debate, on pending tort reform
legislation so it can come up before the Senate for a vote, and you will
have more Doctors and Nurses. I have a personal friend, a well known heart
surgeon who no longer practices because of Mal Practice Insurance costs.
On Fri, 04 Aug 2006 06:13:15 GMT, William H. Bowen
Really? The Canadian government can command a US company to sell its
products in Canada and then set the price? And all the other
countries can do this also? How does that work?
Don't be naive. Big Pharma makes a good profit selling to those other
countries. They are making a killing in the US. Don't believe the
big sob stories about their research and FDA approval costs and the
great new drugs they give us. While there are constant improvements
in drugs, most new drugs launched on the market are little or no
better than the old ones and a new drug always carries an uncertain
risk. And a lot of the research is marketing driven.
A lot of work needed, no doubt. Fortunately there are lots of working
models to learn from.
If you want to be scared, check out the number of personal
bankruptcies which are caused by medical expenses and the stories
But medicare pays less than private insurance. And private insurance
pays less than you do with no insurance. How the hell can it be
Medicare's fault that the price is high. The fact is that Medicare
runs a very tight ship. (Except for Bush's welfare subsidy to Big
Pharma masquerading as a drug plan for seniors.)
Yep, what we have now is the most expensive health care in the world.
When you look at it that way, hard to imagine that the government
could make it worse.
But you don't get into heated debates about health care in the middle of
my son's school Christmas play.
Everything has an appropriate time and place, and an inappropriate time
I suppose you go to Wendy's and stand at people's lunch tables and start
screaming your opinions about welfare, right? After all--according to
you--"you care" and therefore it's appropriate, right?
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