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All my life, I have been a major proponent of buying American made vehicles. I have never owned a foreign car or truck. I have always believed it best to support American companies, American workers, and thus American jobs. Really, its mostly the jobs and wokers, and not the company I'm so concerned about (albeit I'm still a lifelong Ford buff). Typically, this has meant spending more money on a vehicle that usually doesn't last as long or get as good of gas mileage as the foreign counterparts, and I've always been OK with that to some degree. This is how I was raised (my parents have never owned a foreign car either), and I've always been pretty proud of it.

But in todays economy, I've reached a dillema... After I sell my house, I'll be buying another vehicle for a DD (face it, my F250 is killing me in fuel costs, but I need it for hauling horses and my bronco). I was thinking about a Ford Ranger or something along those lines. A foreign auto had never really entered my mind. But upon re-examination of the principles behind my support of the American auto industry, I must admit, I'm having a change of heart.

I'm sure most of you have heard about Ford getting ready to lay off about 25% of its work force. You may or may not have heard about the work force its employing and getting ready to expand in Mexico. Thousands of American workers are about to lose their decent paying jobs, while a bunch of Mexicans are getting ready to essentially take them over at Mexican rates. While I'm sure this is great for the big-wigs at Ford's bottom line, that was never really my concern. These guys were born Silver Spoon in hand anyway. But I see the middle class workers getting screwed. I'm not bashing on Ford over any other particular company, just using them as an example because its recent.

Looking past the exporting of our work forces jobs to the lowest bidders, I get to the point that really has me reconsidering my lifelong stance. My numbers may be off slightly, but they are very close here. The average American CEO today makes an average of $450 to the average workers they employ $1. $450 to $1 !!!! In Europe, that number is closer to $40 or $50 to $1, and in Japan, $11 to $1. Whats wrong with this picture here???

I refuse to maintain my lifelong stance on car buying if all its really amounting to is fattening the wallets of those who would sell out their workforce to the Mexicans and Chinese. If these CEO's and other bigwigs weren't GROSSLY overpaid, perhaps things may look a little different for the average worker.

The way I see it, Toyota is a Japanese owned company. However, they employ a LOT of American workers, pay them excellent wages and benefits, build vehicles right here in America, and make great quality cars and trucks to boot. So whats more American to me? The Mexican Ford or the American Toyota? I think the Toyota. Whats more "American" to me? Grossly overpaid and underworked CEO's who make 450 times as much as the average worker upon whom that salary of theirs is dependent? Or a company who pays the workers a decent wage, and the CEO's a reasonable wage as well? If it means paying some foreigners some money for them to keep American workers bringing home good paychecks right here in THIS country vs paying a few corporate scrooges to sell them out, I'm all behind it.

I'm sure some of you have already come to this conclusion for various different reasons, but some of us, including myself, have always hung onto the idea of "Buy American". Well, America is just as much an idea as it is a place, and I think buying a Toyota truck on my next purchase is the "American" thing to do.

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I agree with CEO's salaries. Out-freaking-rageous.

But you gotta look at it this way. Many Ford workers are stock holders. should ford continue to pay exhorbitant salaries (compared to its competitors using cheap labor) and hurt the bottom line and its stock, which hurts the employees?

True its better than them losing their jobs but the fact is the company must answer to its shareholders, many of whom are employees. The rest of the stockholders only want a higher return, and if that means moving to mexico, so be it.
 

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kf4amu said:
True its better than them losing their jobs but the fact is the company must answer to its shareholders, many of whom are employees. The rest of the stockholders only want a higher return, and if that means moving to mexico, so be it.
Stockholders make their money on the backs of the workers. Moving production to Mexico only helps them on one condition, and that is that we keep buying their product. This is the only way a little guy like me has to make my position on their choice clear. "I won't buy your product anymore, so add that to your bottom line". The only "new" vehicles I have EVER bought, were all Fords...

Its kind of funny, but Capitalism is the ONLY game I can think of that stacks the odds in favor of those who are already winning. I'm not against capitalism, just making an observation as to how far its gone, and pointing out one of its worst shortfalls.
 

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Well said, Jah, and I've had the same feelings my whole life(nothing but american cars in the driveway). I too have begun to wonder just how well we're supporting America by buying mexican built cars and trucks. When we were shopping for even a used car, I told the wife that anything other than the big three were off limits. Luckily, I don't see us buying anything new for many years, so I can avoid this confrontation at least for a while.
 

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JahWarrior said:
Stockholders make their money on the backs of the workers. Moving production to Mexico only helps them on one condition, and that is that we keep buying their product. This is the only way a little guy like me has to make my position on their choice clear. "I won't buy your product anymore, so add that to your bottom line". The only "new" vehicles I have EVER bought, were all Fords...

Its kind of funny, but Capitalism is the ONLY game I can think of that stacks the odds in favor of those who are already winning. I'm not against capitalism, just making an observation as to how far its gone, and pointing out one of its worst shortfalls.
if no one bought stock then companies would not have the investment capital to expand and hire more workers. i don't think the depiction of investor as a robber baron is accurate. but, i will certainly agree about CEOs being grossly overcompensated.
 

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ScorpionBoy said:
if no one bought stock then companies would not have the investment capital to expand and hire more workers. i don't think the depiction of investor as a robber baron is accurate. but, i will certainly agree about CEOs being grossly overcompensated.
I agree with this Scorp. My point is, the return on their investments come off the backs of the same workers, who when the going gets tough, gets the shaft. Do you think the stockholders are "sharing the pain" in all this to the same equivalent of the workers? Maybe its socialistic of me, but I just don't feel sorry for people who are already rich beyond belief losing a few dollars on investments before I feel the pain of the guy who's just trying to work for a living to keep a roof over his family's head. :shrug Its time the pain made its way full circle, instead of of making its way straight to the bottom of the pyramid.
 

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I have read many stories on this very subject in the past week, and (gasp) I agree with Jah on this. ;) What really gets me though, is like he said, which is more American-Toyota using American employees and being built in the U.S., or a Ford/Chevy using foreign made parts to assemble here? Add Chrysler to the mix which is owned by Benz!

I know this is going to piss off some folks on here, but I firmly believe that the Auto Unions are a big part of the lay offs/plant closures as well as moving factories outside of our borders. As I understand it, some of the "Japanese" auto factories do not allow union affiliations with its employees. Wonder why they're doing so well?
 
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There aint no such thing as an "american" car, or "japanese" car, or "german" car, and so on. What I'm saying is no company in any country makes their stuff totally from components made in that country. Possible exception might be china, although I doubt that too. Whether it is a ford or dodge assembled in Canada or mexico of "american???" components, or whatever. Everybody is looking for the best deals to increase their bottom line, and make the cars affordable for consumers and increase their company's value. All understandable. If you really look at the electronics, injectors, computers, glass, paint, everything in any car, you'll find that stuff comes from all over the world. World is changing, and in many ways that is a good thing. I bought grinding discs the other day, made in Russia. Other than surplus ammo, I've never bought anything made in Russia. Will that increase their middle class and make it less likely they'll be warring against us? I hope so. The holster I bought and wore daily in Iraq was made in Viet Nam. Hard to beleive when I grew up in that era, all my Uncles went to Nam, and so on. yet there it is. Do I wish more stuff was made in America, that Craftsman still was quality like it was when I was young, well of course. But the world turns. Hell, even a totally foreign car, from a foreign company, made of foreign components, is helping Americans when you buy it from an American salesman, buy parts from american parts companies (that is located in America) and so on. Long story long, buy what you like, what satisfies your needs. Don't worry so much that those tires were made in korea, or the tranny cast in japan of south american aluminum, or the rubber made from oil products from russia, or whatever.
 

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I completely agree with JahWarrior. About two years ago, the company my Dad works for laid off a couple hundred people because they said the budgets were getting tight, but yet that same year, the ceo of the company took home a 3 million dollar bonous alone on top of what he made that year. Had he not taken that bonous, they may not have had to layoff anybody.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
davesanrn said:
Everybody is looking for the best deals to increase their bottom line, and make the cars affordable for consumers and increase their company's value.
Unemployed consumers don't do the economy much good, and can't afford even the cheapest new cars. But hey, the rich folks can get a great deal on a Lexus!
 

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JahWarrior said:
I agree with this Scorp. My point is, the return on their investments come off the backs of the same workers, who when the going gets tough, gets the shaft. Do you think the stockholders are "sharing the pain" in all this to the same equivalent of the workers? Maybe its socialistic of me, but I just don't feel sorry for people who are already rich beyond belief losing a few dollars on investments before I feel the pain of the guy who's just trying to work for a living to keep a roof over his family's head. :shrug Its time the pain made its way full circle, instead of of making its way straight to the bottom of the pyramid.
in many cases, the stockholders and the workers are the same person, especially if they have company pensions. The folks on the bottom will always have to take the hits during layoffs. Sometimes middle management is targeted. it is the top echelon that is not often targeted and they have golden parachutes anyway. i think these top ceo types should get more scrutiny from their respective board of directors. what value are they bringing which costs so much? what is the justification for such high pay?
 

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it's as if you read my mind Jah. i've only ever owned Ford trucks, but it's become very apparent who is more interested in employing middle class Americans. my next vehicle will very likely be a high quality vehicle from one of the "Foriegn" companies...perhaps because the big three won't be around.
 

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Blue'87GT said:
I know this is going to piss off some folks on here, but I firmly believe that the Auto Unions are a big part of the lay offs/plant closures as well as moving factories outside of our borders. As I understand it, some of the "Japanese" auto factories do not allow union affiliations with its employees. Wonder why they're doing so well?
I also belive this is true.

Do you know how much a Unionized U.S. Auto worker with 15yrs of seniority make?

Compare that to a Nonunionized U.S. Auto worker in a U.S. Honda plant with 15yrs of seniority.
 

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JahWarrior said:
I'm sure most of you have heard about Ford getting ready to lay off about 25% of its work force. You may or may not have heard about the work force its employing and getting ready to expand in Mexico. Thousands of American workers are about to lose their decent paying jobs, while a bunch of Mexicans are getting ready to essentially take them over at Mexican rates. While I'm sure this is great for the big-wigs at Ford's bottom line, that was never really my concern. These guys were born Silver Spoon in hand anyway. But I see the middle class workers getting screwed. I'm not bashing on Ford over any other particular company, just using them as an example because its recent.
Wow! Epiphenomenal; given my "throwing up" thread. Oh, BTW, I didn't know that every corporate CEO was "...born Silver Spoon in hand...". Some worked their way up from garages like Henry Ford and Bill Gates.
JahWarrior said:
The way I see it, Toyota is a Japanese owned company. However, they employ a LOT of American workers, pay them excellent wages and benefits, build vehicles right here in America, and make great quality cars and trucks to boot. So whats more American to me? The Mexican Ford or the American Toyota? I think the Toyota. Whats more "American" to me? Grossly overpaid and underworked CEO's who make 450 times as much as the average worker upon whom that salary of theirs is dependent? Or a company who pays the workers a decent wage, and the CEO's a reasonable wage as well? If it means paying some foreigners some money for them to keep American workers bringing home good paychecks right here in THIS country vs paying a few corporate scrooges to sell them out, I'm all behind it.
If you're going to buy Jap, at least buy Mazda. Ford owns a lot of stock in that company. Besides, Ford's going "green", isn't it? Rotary engines, here we come!
ScorpionBoy said:
you already have a truck. why not get an audi or something good for your DD?
Buying a new or recent truck because a payed-for truck gets bad mileage is false economy. Figure up the payments, interest, taxes, increased insurance and licensing fees. Then see how much gas can be bought with that.
JahWarrior said:
Stockholders make their money on the backs of the workers. Moving production to Mexico only helps them on one condition, and that is that we keep buying their product. This is the only way a little guy like me has to make my position on their choice clear. "I won't buy your product anymore, so add that to your bottom line". The only "new" vehicles I have EVER bought, were all Fords...

Its kind of funny, but Capitalism is the ONLY game I can think of that stacks the odds in favor of those who are already winning. I'm not against capitalism, just making an observation as to how far its gone, and pointing out one of its worst shortfalls.
A poor man never offered me a job. And why is it always characterized as "...on the backs of the workers..." when talking about corporate profits? It's "...I won't buy your product anymore,..." that hurts the workers who inevitably will lose their jobs because the "evil" corporation loses it's market and goes elsewhere in search of cheaper labor to regain it's market share.
JahWarrior said:
Maybe its socialistic of me, but I just don't feel sorry for people who are already rich beyond belief losing a few dollars on investments before I feel the pain of the guy who's just trying to work for a living to keep a roof over his family's head. :shrug Its time the pain made its way full circle, instead of of making its way straight to the bottom of the pyramid.
So I guess all the retired people living off stock invested pension funds, who are "...already rich beyond belief...", should feel a whole lot of pain so you can have more gas money just to go wheeling! Take a look at pension plan investments, Warrior.
Blue'87GT said:
I know this is going to piss off some folks on here, but I firmly believe that the Auto Unions are a big part of the lay offs/plant closures as well as moving factories outside of our borders. As I understand it, some of the "Japanese" auto factories do not allow union affiliations with its employees. Wonder why they're doing so well?
Right on target! Lawrence, my brother-in-law is a retired tile setter. After the Korean War, when he first started, he couldn't get into the union so he made a fraction of what the union guys got even though he did the same work. The "...unions were the worst thing..." he would say. Then he got into the union and worked just as hard to keep other new guys out. Then the unions were the best thing since sliced bread. Go figure!

Greed goes from the board room right down to the floor sweeper. It's the American way! Whining and complaining also goes from the floor sweeper right up to the board room. It's the American way, too! And it's so American to call yourself "...the little guy..." if your neighbor has something just a little better than you.

It's not corporate greed that moves prices up and factories south of the border, but costs.
 

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all good points marv, but don't you think something is amiss with the enourmous remuneration for upper management in these companies? don't get me wrong, i am all for commensurate pay. Yet, there is such a disparity in pay for the top rung of these companies that it seriously seems like corporate looting to me. this sort of thing is worrisome for the investor.
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
marv said:
Wow! Epiphenomenal; given my "throwing up" thread. Oh, BTW, I didn't know that every corporate CEO was "...born Silver Spoon in hand...". Some worked their way up from garages like Henry Ford and Bill Gates.
I didn't know that either, nor did I say it. :twak X1. Do you think the current Ford CEO was born "Silver Spoon in Hand"?

marv said:
If you're going to buy Jap, at least buy Mazda. Ford owns a lot of stock in that company. Besides, Ford's going "green", isn't it? Rotary engines, here we come!
Why would I buy from a company that Ford own so much stock in, when the whole point is to make it clear to Ford and like companies that I DON'T support what they are doing? Cut off my nose to spite my face? No thanks. :twak X2. Besides, I like Toyotas :shrug

marv said:
Buying a new or recent truck because a payed-for truck gets bad mileage is false economy. Figure up the payments, interest, taxes, increased insurance and licensing fees. Then see how much gas can be bought with that.
Umm yeah, I thought of that. Exactly why I want to buy a new DD. Also, I don't want to build up all the miles on my SuperDuty doing daily commutes. Another important factor in my decision.

marv said:
A poor man never offered me a job. And why is it always characterized as "...on the backs of the workers..." when talking about corporate profits? It's "...I won't buy your product anymore,..." that hurts the workers who inevitably will lose their jobs because the "evil" corporation loses it's market and goes elsewhere in search of cheaper labor to regain it's market share.
We all must make decisions in life. I will still be supporting American workers with the purchase of a Toyota. Those Americans just happen to work for someones besides Ford. Either way, someone wins, someone loses. I already stated my reasons for feeling my decision is more supportive of American workers.

marv said:
So I guess all the retired people living off stock invested pension funds, who are "...already rich beyond belief...", should feel a whole lot of pain so you can have more gas money just to go wheeling! Take a look at pension plan investments, Warrior.
Wow, not even in the political forum, and you are still twisting around my words.... :twak X3. You are completely off base in your assessment, and I'll just leave it at that. :rolleyes:
 

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ScorpionBoy said:
...don't you think something is amiss with the enourmous remuneration for upper management in these companies?
You're right. All the blame belongs to management, labor and the consumer. I really believe that!

Management wants more that it needs. No matter how much the consumer has, he wants more. No matter how well the guy on the Ford assembly line lives, he wants the same or more as the guy on the GM assembly line gets.

The CEO of a giant corporation will jump ship just as quick as any of you will to get a bigger paycheck or more benefits. The UAW at GM will go on strike for pay scale increases just as soon as the UAW workers at Chrysler get a fatter settlement. The soccer mom will buy a Jap van because it has a backup TV camera for the same price as a Ford van without one.

It was discouraging to see one thread on this board where somebody got a new job at a home improvement center. The advice he received? How to brown-nose to get ahead and where to hide to avoid work!

It's all the American way.
 
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