President Donald Trump ripped into General Motors on Friday for turning their back on their own commitments and then trying to price gouge the federal government.
“As usual with ‘this’ General Motors, things just never seem to work out,” Trump tweeted. “They said they were going to give us 40,000 much-needed ventilators ‘very quickly.’ Now they are saying it will only be 6,000, in late April, and they want top dollar.”
Because of GM’s actions and subsequent failed federal negotiations with the company, the president has invoked the Defense Production Act to mandate that GM produce ventilators.
What is General Motors CEO Mary Barra thinking? Has she and her GM PR staff lost their minds?
Trump then hit harder: “General Motors MUST immediately open their stupidly abandoned Lordstown plant in Ohio, or some other plant, and START MAKING VENTILATORS, NOW!!!!!! FORD, GET GOING ON VENTILATORS, FAST!!!!!!”
GM responded to the president. ”GM is in the position to help build more ventilators because of the remarkable performance of GM and Ventec’s global supply base,” said Barra. “Our joint teams have moved mountains to find real solutions to save lives and fight the pandemic.”
As a former corporate PR director this analyst can tell you the immediately above statement is cover-your-tail vague by-the-book prose designed to deflect and change the subject.
It is so pathetic it is practically DOA. GM should have first changed the pricing strategy and then fallen on their sword. Consumers will forgive mistakes. They will not forgive naked greed in a time of national crisis.
We here at this publication recognize the inherent superiority of private sector solutions compared to public sector boondoggles. But when the private sector puts avarice over common sense, when they try to make a profit over the bodies of coronavirus victims, if they over-promise and then fail to ramp up to cover their own commitments, then they deserve the criticism of the nation and its leaders.
If Mary Barra wants to keep her job and not go down as a national villain, she better get GM in gear, pronto.