I hope you've braced yourself for the inevitable, because pretty soon, there won't be a Big Three, or even a Big Two automobile industry; at least not in the USA.
The Senate, bless their little do-nothing hearts, has decided that instead of passing a meager $14 billion dollar bailout to help the American auto industry, they'd rather tighten their purse strings and let the American auto industry shrivel up and die on it's own (CNN Article). Now, while I think the bail-out is a hail-mary, slim-chance-in-hell-of-working proposition for saving the auto companies from certain doom, I think it's important to realize that our lawmakers have decided it's more important to let the industry die out as quickly as possible. Sure, they'll say things like the plan as presented wasn't up to snuff, but deep down, I think there's a certain resentment and wish that the Big Three would just go away altogether. The Big Three represent a stagnation in transportation technology, and it's time we got working on more fuel efficient, safer, and more reliable automobiles. Maybe they're right, but did it ever occur to anyone on Capitol Hill that perhaps the road to their Utopian vision may lead through the brambles and underbrush of the current auto companies plight? Did they not consider the suppliers, design firms, and media companies that rely on those automotive dollars? Sure, I think the auto companies need to slim down, but I sure as heck don' t think they need to starve. There's an old saying that when GM sneezes, everyone gets a cold. I think a certain southern senator needs to come up to Michigan so he can witness the viral nature of his actions first-hand.
I really think we're the last generation that will know what an American-made automobile was, and we have our lawmakers to thank for that.