In the Loop

The auto industry is not to blame! (Really?)

Posted at 12:29 PM on April 3, 2009 by Jeff Horwich (2 Comments)

Spinning off multiple threads from a conversation I had yesterday with David Cole, Chairman of the Center for Automotive Research.....

Scenario: We've been getting tons of responses from you on our questions about American versus foreign cars.

Though we heard from folks on both sides of the divide, there were many folks who still cite quality and appeal as reasons they will never buy American.

So I thought I'd add an expert voice to the mix -- that's this Dave Cole fella. He's widely quoted, and I have interviewed him myself back in my business-reporter days.

He gamely handled my main question, but then the interview took a provocative turn. If you want to listen, here you go (this edited version is only about five minutes long):

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A number of you listened on Facebook, were kind of dumbfounded as I was, and offered some terrific comments.

Rather than write 'em all out, take a look at today's video, summing it all up:

Comments (2)

The news media have bleakly conveyed from governmental sources, that there are now 8.5 % or 13 million jobless Americans. Today! Now more than ever we should command our Senators and Representatives to preserve E-Verify. Not for just 5 years, nor 7 years, but on a permanent basis. This is the time when this instrument should be made fully operational for every company in the United States. No half-measures but every employee in the Human Resources roster should be checked and identified as eligible to--WORK IN THE UNITED STATES. Not just new hires but anybody who is employed? Senator Leadership even want us, to erase "BUY AMERICAN." clause.

For far too long Politicians have distracted Americans, from the major impact of--- ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION? Sen. Harry Reid, Speaker Nancy Pelosi tabled E-Verify in a secret Senate chamber debate, cutting off funding. Implications are obvious to us, that politicians want to maintain the free movement of cheap labor into this country. Any paramount laws relating to stopping immigration by both parties, has been grounded. This establishes that their--OATH OF OFFICE--is not worth the paper it's written on? We must all keep perpetually phoning Washington at: 202-224-3121; The President: 202-456-1414: The truth about the plague of illegal immigration, can be found at NUMBERSUSA. JUDICIAL WATCH, CAPSWEB, AMERICAN PATROL.

Posted by Brittancus | April 3, 2009 6:49 PM

Mr. Cole was surprisingly vague on most points, and unenlightening on nearly every other "the data shows this," "old wives tale" etc. He also failed to mention one of the largest contributing factors - Americans have been buying fewer cars (foreign or domestic) for quite some time. The average age of cars in America ten years ago was 8.3 years. Today, that number is 9.2. (See

As for the number of cars sold, GM was unsurpassed for decades until last year. How can that be trivial? As for their finances... that's a different story.

Posted by Bruce | April 6, 2009 11:52 AM

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