Republicans are the party of big business and big business these days seems dedicated to a short-sighted program of mindlessly looting any source of wealth they can and destroying the means of further wealth creation. At least, that seems to be the lesson of this:
After Ford Motor Co. posted the largest loss in its 103-year history Thursday, analysts questioned whether the struggling automaker can achieve its restructuring goal of reaching profitability by 2009.
Ford reported that it lost $12.7 billion in 2006. At least $6.1 billion of that was attributed to troubled North American operations, which continued to be hit hard by falling sales of pickup trucks and sport-utility vehicles.
Ford built 3 million vehicles in North America last year, 313,000 fewer than in 2005. It will build fewer this year. Thursday, it trimmed first-quarter production plans by another 10,000 vehicles, to 740,000--136,000 less than a year ago. That reduces revenue because automakers book vehicles as sold when they are shipped to dealers.
[Ford CEO Alan] Mulally also confirmed that Ford is considering giving performance bonuses to its top executives at the same time it is incurring massive losses, closing plants and cutting jobs.
"More of the compensation of senior leadership is tied to their performance," he said. "This team has made great progress. You have to keep the talented people you really need." (my emphases)
I'm not sure how much more of this kind of misrule we can survive.