Archive for June 22nd, 2009

From Richard Wolff

The greatest tragedies among many in the collapse and bankruptcy of General Motors concern what is not happening.  There are those solutions to GM’s problems not being considered by Obama’s administration.  There are the solutions not being demanded by the United Auto Workers Union (UAW).  There are all the solutions not even being discussed by most left commentators on the disaster.  Finally there are crucial aspects of GM’s demise not getting the attention they deserve.

Let’s start with an example of the last.  For 50 years, the world market for automobiles has grown spectacularly.  The company best positioned to have ridden that rising tide to success was GM, the global market leader for most of that time.  Instead, GM failed catastrophically.  Those responsible, who planned, adjusted, and competed poorly, have a name.  They are the corporation’s Board of Directors: the handful of individuals chosen by and responsible to the handful of major GM shareholders.  That Board and those shareholders proved across decades that they lacked the understanding, vision, and flexibility to succeed.  A rising tide is supposed to lift all boats, but GM’s captains managed to sink its boat.

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