While I know we’re talk­ing about a lot of lives laid waste here, I can’t offer too much com­ment about Ford’s announce­ment that they’re turn­ing another 10,000 employ­ees into job-​​force Soylent Green, beyond a smug yet grim chuckle.

With gas prices drop­ping — yet guar­an­teed to rise once more, and Americans at last begin­ning to real­ize that SUVs are shit — it’s hardly sur­pris­ing that Ford, DaimlerChrysler and Chevrolet are feel­ing the effects of mon­u­men­tally piss-​​poor busi­ness decisions.

Ford’s slash­ing of 10,000 white col­lar jobs and offers of buy­out for all of its 75,000 employ­ees are just the lat­est moves of retreat that are the direct result of what hap­pens when run­away cap­tial­ism joins forces with marketing.

Just because “the peo­ple” want some­thing does not mean they should get it. (I know that sounds elit­ist, but only because I’m indis­putably correct.)

Lincoln Masturbators, Ford Exploders, Chevy Avalanches* and Canyoneros are as doomed as the dinosaurs on which they run. These unfor­giv­ably self­ish, short-​​sighted dis­as­ters on wheels are pretty much directly respon­si­ble for the fail­ures of their man­u­fac­tur­ers — or more accu­rately, the fail­ures of their man­u­fac­tur­ers to show due dili­gence or even a scrap of wis­dom are respon­si­ble for their impend­ing collapse.

The self­ish­ness and greed of the typ­i­cal American SUV owner, of course, is a fac­tor here as well. “I’m safer!” bleat some — sure, you’re safer; fuck every­one else … “I get a bet­ter view of the road!” squeak oth­ers — and in the SUV arms race the peo­ple stuck behind you just don’t mat­ter, I guess … “Hey, you never know, I might go offroad some­time” — yeah. Right.

If you really want to make the roads safer, the obvi­ous solu­tion is to mount an eight-​​inch steel spike in the mid­dle of every vehicle’s steer­ing wheel. That, or per­haps con­sider scal­ing down the size of vehi­cles. It doesn’t take a physics major to under­stand that a 7,000 pound vehi­cle is always going to do more dam­age in a col­li­sion than a 3,000 pound one.

So in one respect I think the big automak­ers are reap­ing what they’ve sown — the prob­lem, of course, is that in the process, they’ve fucked the American econ­omy. Again.

How about show­ing a lit­tle self-​​restraint in the future? Or bet­ter still, invest­ing in some­thing that’s guar­an­teed to increase safety on the roads while improv­ing qual­ity of life and sub­stan­tially reduc­ing your fuel costs?

* I didn’t have to make up a joke name for that one.


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