By Peter M. DeLorenzo Detroit. Ah yes, 2018, what a spectacular time to be in the automobile business. With the promise of new beginnings and untold profits dancing in "The New Visionaries'" heads, a Next Frontier marked by a horde of shiny happy zombie cars careening across the landscape, and a blissfully unaware populace with joker-like grins plastered on their faces as they revel in the mindless, pay-as-you-go un-involvement – what could possibly go wrong? Meanwhile the real-world market has been upended by actual paying customers and their insatiable desire for Crossovers, SUVs and Trucks, to the point that legacy auto companies like GM have been caught out of position and unprepared, forcing it to close underperforming plants and cut thousands of workers. GM blames the market conditions, but I place the blame squarely on management for their lack of planning and inability to anticipate where the market was going. Add to this chaotic situation the headlong rush of … [Read more...] about DIGITAL DISCIPLES, ZOMBIE CARS, AND ENOUGH DELUSION AND HUBRIS TO POWER THE NEW EMERALD AUTO CITY JUST OVER THE HILL. WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO WRONG, BESIDES EVERYTHING? THAT’S RIGHT, IT’S TIME FOR THE AUTOEXTREMIST 2018 YEAR IN REVIEW!
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Keith Laing The Detroit News Published 12:01 AM EST Dec 17, 2018 Washington — The furious backlash against General Motors Co.’s restructuring, delivered by official Washington, may be a harbinger of things to come. Even as the Detroit automaker executes a plan to cut 8,000 salaried employees, idle four U.S. plants and imperil 3,300 hourly workers, its crosstown rivals are quietly reshaping their footprints to account for dramatically shifting demand and to bolster their cash hoards to fund next-generation technology. The result is likely to be frustration, confusion and yet more pushback from constituencies outside the executive suites: Why are automakers booking billions in North American profits on fatter profit margins acting like companies desperately managing an imminent recession? And how can they justify the actions when two of Detroit’s three automakers owe their survival to U.S. taxpayers amid the global financial meltdown? GM and … [Read more...] about New GM faces old headwinds in D.C.
Associated Press Published 7:57 AM EST Nov 30, 2018 Buenos Aires, Argentina – President Donald Trump says a new trade pact being signed by the United States, Mexico and Canada is a “model agreement that changes the trade landscape forever.” Trump spent more than a year pushing the leaders of Canada and Mexico into agreeing to a rewrite of North American trade rules. Trump, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexico’s outgoing President Enrique Pena Nieto are signing the new pact Friday at the Group of 20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Trump now faces what could prove a more formidable foe: The U.S. Congress, which must ratify the agreement. He says the parties have “taken a lot of barbs and a little abuse” during the renegotiation. He turned to Trudeau, saying “It’s been a battle,” but battles sometimes make “good friends.” Trump opened two days of diplomacy at the Group of 20 summit after his abrupt … [Read more...] about Trump hails new trade pact with Mexico, Canada
Julie Hinds Detroit Free Press Published 10:00 AM EST Nov 16, 2018 Josh Wakely considers it one of the great memories at life. He was an 8-year-old boy living in a working-class Australian town when his mother won tickets on the radio to see Stevie Wonder in Sydney. "We caught the train down to Sydney, which is about three hours away and went to a Stevie Wonder concert," says Wakely, who's now 37. "I just remember thinking it was electric and celestial and extraordinary. At one point, Stevie Wonder asked everyone to close their eyes. I remember my mind being filled with color." Those vivid hues are now part of "Motown Magic," an animated children's series debuting Tuesday on Netflix. Created and produced by Wakely, it's inspired by the songs from Detroit that captivated the world in the 1960s — hits that he calls "about the best melodies ever written." The stories center on an 8-year-old African-American boy named Ben, … [Read more...] about Motown songs are the star in new Netflix cartoon for kids
Rob Gillies, Gene Johnson and Tracey Lindeman Associated Press Published 6:54 AM EDT Oct 18, 2018 Montreal – Cam Battley is a top executive at one of Canada’s biggest marijuana companies, but he isn’t sticking around to savor the country’s historic pot legalization. He’s off to Germany on Friday and Australia next week – a sign of what a leader Canada has become in the global pot industry, and of the reverberations its decision to legalize could have internationally. “It’s a special moment, not just for Canada, but for the world because my strong conviction is that the rest of the world will follow suit,” said Battley, chief corporate officer at Aurora Cannabis. “We’re not known as wild and crazy. We’re known for good public policy and I think they will follow our lead.” Battley will attend an investor conference in Germany and then head to Australia, which legalized medical marijuana in 2016. … [Read more...] about After Canada legalizes pot, industry eyes rest of world