Sunday, November 30, 2008

We (Big) Three Kings (of Detroit)

We Three Kings (of Detroit)

"We Three Kings of Detroit We Are...
Traveling East (but Not in our Car...)
To Get Some Money
It Ain't Funny
From GS boys Hank and Kashkar...i..."

Star of OnStar
Star of Light
Flying Gulfstreams in the Night
Hands Extended We Intended
To Get the Loot without a Fight.

One of the Kings from GM he knows
A Swashbuckling Backer who Wears Fancy Clothes
Who is a Skipper with a Clipper
With his Eye on the Chevy Vo…olt…

(Repeat Chorus)

The Volt is NOT vaporware! Halleluiah!

Leaders from Detroit’s “Big 3” automotive companies are going back this week for another round of talks to persuade Congress to bail out the ailing carmakers. provides the details of how well the first attempt went and includes valuable insights into how the next round of talks may go as GM’s CEO Rick Wagoner urges Nancy Pelosi to hasten approval of the bailout bill it seeks.

Today’s San Jose Mercury News features an informative opinion by Chairman and founder of Palo Alto based, Vincent Barabba, on why the U.S. must not let the “Big 3” automakers fail.

In his article entitled “GM has been innovative, too, despite its mistakes” Barabba, who retired as the general manager of corporate strategy at General Motors in 2003, believes “that taxpayers have the best possible chance of getting their money back” should Congress decide to support a loan package to the auto manufacturers.

Barabba cites GM’s ability to innovate with its OnStar telecom system, which “has nearly 6 million active subscribers and is launching its eighth generation of embedded hardware in 12 years.” In addition, he emphasizes that GM, in particular, has a commitment to cleaner, more fuel-efficient cars as it

“has already invested billions of dollars in developing the Chevrolet Volt — a revolutionary plug-in extended range electric vehicle that will be introduced at the end of 2010. There are currently 100 Chevrolet Equinox Hydrogen Fuel Cell vehicles on the road to test the viability of fuel-cell technology.”

For anyone trying to tease out the mounting “fact and fiction” surrounding statements that are often “said in the media and around the water cooler,” Barabba also recommends visiting this helpful site where LWOH re-confirmed that the Chevy Volt is NOT vaporware.  The site did not, however, confirm or deny our arguably specious and unsubstantiated guess that a certain venture capital firm with a founder known for building the Spruce Goose of all sailing vessels is applying its heft to persuade Congress to oh so potentially and possibly grease the skids to bailout GM.

Whether the stuff of myth, rumor, fact or fiction, whatevs...let’s hope that the leaders from Detroit’s ailing automakers present a wise and viable plan this week that will put American workers first by committing to sustainable, long-term and world-class technologies designed to create substantial job growth once again in the Rustbelt – with of course, a little help from our friends in Silicon Valley.



prezdumas said...

Vince's company goes by another name, Market Insight Corp.

Note this recent release:

“Online Advisors for Market Intelligence at GM,” describes a completely new method for collecting consumer preference data using online product advisors on The advantages of this approach – actual shoppers, continuous data, very large samples, the right incentives, low cost – make it an attractive new tool for market researchers.

"The system provides the Advanced Vehicle Development group at GM with an unprecedented and timely view of consumer preferences as well as accurate market performance simulations for projected new products. It has guided many major product design and development decisions by allowing us to move directly from consumer research to product design. It is now widely used throughout the corporation," says Harvey Bell, Executive Director, Global Advanced Vehicle Development at GM.

“We are honored to be recognized by the AMA for our contribution to GM’s market intelligence system,” says Rich Falcone, President, “The system represents nothing less than a new paradigm in the capture and analysis of the voice of the consumer, and we look forward to expanding its contributions within GM’s product planning operations.”

"We are excited about the unique intelligence we will develop in China, and the impact in preparing new shoppers to become informed consumers.”

If GM gets the bailout, will they keep jobs here?

Citizen Carrie said...

Thanks for the research, Prezdumas.

It's amazing how the only thing I can find about Barabba is an endless series of press releases (a lot having to do with the introduction of OnStar.) His main problem is his association with the John Smale/Ron Zarella Reign of Terror at GM, in which only Autoextremist Peter De Lorenzo can do justice to in describing that era:

"...A busload of MBA-wielding, P&G doctrine-spouting, packaged goods-slinging lightweights were unleashed on GM in the heyday of the John Smale-Ron Zarrella Reign of Terror. Bristling with a boatload of impressive, non-applicable credentials and enough impractical knowledge of minute esoterica to make even your average political science major cringe, Zarrella's Zombies succeeded in almost running GM right into the ground. Never have so few done so much damage to so many in the name of "marketing" in the annals of the car business - and the Impala was a stunning display of their handiwork."

Citizen Carrie said...

OK, OK, I'll say what I'm thinking. What an amazing coincidence that the Mercury News printed an editorial from a former GM guy. Another sign that highly innovative Silicon Valley and moldy oldy aging Rustbelt companies are trying to work out some types of symbiotic deals? That maybe SV might possibly need the Rustbelt after all, if only to pick over the best pieces in the giant garage sale and consign the rest of the junk to the scrap heap?

BTW, I love your poem, 2Truthy! :-)

pamfy pants said...

what would any of this have to do with some sniff pamf? have fraudsters hit their it/who wants to know?