Hat in Hand to Chyna

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GM’s CEO Mary Barra went to Chyna last week – probably because GM is selling fewer cars in Chyna these days. Only 2.3 million last year – down from almost 3.1 million back in 2019. Its market share is down from about 15 percent back in 2015 to less than 10 percent currently.

History repeats!

GM’s market share here used to be about 50 percent – before it sold or made any cars in Chyna. Its market share now – some 50 years later, after a couple of decades of investing in Chyna rather than America – is about 16 percent.

Mary Barra’s salary is not down by any percent.

She continues to  be paid (as opposed to earned) some $29 million annually, far more than her predecessors were paid when GM had roughly three times the U.S. market share it currently has.

She has plenty of money – as well as free use of a private jet – to go to Chyna, where she was “encouraged” to “step up investments” by the Chynese (it’s always fun to use Orange Man-ese when discussing Chyna).

It’s a shame, isn’t it, that the head of General Motors is more interested in Chyna than America? But it’s understandable, given that Chyna rather than America is GM’s biggest market. It sold sold about 2.2 million cars in America last year – fewer cars than it sold in Chyna.

Sales of Buicks are in freefall here, down 42 percent – probably soon to fall similarly in Chyna, where Buicks have until recently sold very well – on the strength of fading memories of what Buick used to stand for, back when American-made cars were kings of the road. But a 2023 Encore is – to bowdlerize what Lloyd Benson said to Dan Quayle – no Electra 225.

The latter was a glorious dreadnought powered by a huge V8 that proudly touted its length – which was almost as long as a current super-sized SUV such as a Cadillac ESV (227 inches long). A generic little crossover almost five feet shorter with a 1.2 liter three cylinder engine isn’t much of an Encore.

Never mind. Just keep on “investing” in more of the same.

Barra said she thinks that Chyna “remains a key market” and that she “looks forward” to “developing more clean and intelligent” vehicles there.

Italics added.

We all know what “clean” is supposed to mean, when it is used in reference to modern cars – which are exactly that, if they aren’t EVs. But what Barra and others who use the term mean when they use that word is of course EVs, which they insist are “clean” because they do not “emit” any carbon dioxide – at the tailpipe. Carbon dioxide is “emitted” elsewhere – several of them, including the places where the necessary raw materials are extracted as well as the factories (including those that make the batteries) that make EVs. And of course the power plants that make the electricity that powers EVs.

But – even so – carbon dioxide isn’t a pollutant, the latter referring to something that fouls the environment – and carbon dioxide does no such thing. What it does do is provide the greasy excuse for gulling people into “clean and intelligent” EVs – i.e., cars with both a literal (physical) leash – that being the power cable – as well as an electronic one.

The cars GM is “designing” are connected.

Cars that can be controlled, remotely.

Perfect for Chyna – the proving ground for universal control. The country in which everything you’re allowed to do depends on what you do. And don’t do. If you do – or do not do – something the Chinese communist apparat does not want you to do – or fail to do something it demands you do – then your permission to do something you wanted to do – such as drive, for example – can be rescinded as quickly and easily as a signal to your “intelligent and clean” car can be transmitted.

That is what Barra’s GM is “investing” in. It sees the future of America in Chyna.

Last fall, GM announced it would be launching 15 new “clean and intelligent” EVs in Chyna, amounting – so it hopes – to  1 million new sales by 2025 and a significant increase in its currently falling market share.

But that is not likely to happen because the government of Chyna, though communist, is also nationalist. It promotes investments that benefit Chyna rather than America – reversing what American companies have done over the past 30-plus years that have elapsed since the government of America sold out America by encouraging what were once American corporations like GM to “invest” in Chyna rather than America.

And so they did.

Before Chyna was granted Most Favored Nation status some 30 years ago – before GM began “investing” in Chyna – GM still had about 35 percent of the American car market (this was circa 1990) or about twice the market share it has now, after all those “investments.”

GM is paying Mary Barra a lot of money to make more such, too.

It’s nice work, if you can get it.

. . .

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50 COMMENTS

  1. As much as dislike GM, and haven’t bought one in a long time, go drive a CT4 or CT5 Blackwing. IMO the best vehicle GM has ever made. They are impressive and still made, for now.

    • Well, I have to correct ‘the best gm has made’, maybe best they’ve made in a long time, but I would much rather have one of their 60’s versions.
      So what is the best? Eric always says the 90’s trucks were the best, and I have to agree to a point. Only now they are bigger, and much more capable do-it-all machines, it’s only the epa crap that makes them suspect, so I would say today’s chassis’ with 90’s epa regs would be the best. and soon they will be EV or nothing and they will start not being do-it-all machines again.

  2. Another day of ten deep at every MacDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, In and Out, Jack in the Box, Taco Bell, Taco Johns. ad infinitum. Food is in high demand, can’t go hungry.

    You’re hooked on junk food, emphasis on junk.

    Gimme a Chyna! Gimme another Chyna! Give me one more Chyna! What do you get?

    Chyna Chyna Chyna Chyna Chyna Chyna

    Whatever that is.

    Give me a yak! Give me another yak! Give me one more yak! What do you get?

    Yak Yak Yak Yak Yak Yak Yak Yak

    All they ever do and nothing else.

  3. Hey Eric! (And all)
    Bill from Curious Cars just put up a new vid of him testing out the “self-driving” feature of an ’18 Turdla(Tesla) Model X.

    Tesla’s Full Self Driving Beta Has Issues, and Scared the Living Crap Out of Me
    https://youtu.be/23wzMEtxYl

    Quote from vid:
    “When you beta test hand grenades .. you don’t hand them out to the public”

  4. I have to assume that this is a recent picture, so I can’t take any of these people seriously. I mean, they’re still wearing a useless piece of material on their sweaty faces? No. I cannot. These people are trying to push us to the limit and IMO they’re almost there. Electric cars? That will be the least of our concerns.

  5. I think Chyna is spelled Gina – like in Vagina.

    ‘Saturday Night Live’ returns with Baldwin as Trump
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WOQMH-M2BKs

    What CEOs get paid is obscene. Their woke politics even more so. Amerika is in an epic death spiral – covered up by asset inflation which has yielded an uber wealthy class which virtue signals with green cars. When by the magic of an inflated asset bubble your home goes up 10x, you feel so privileged you run down and buy a Tesla to show that you care.

  6. I’ve wondered why Chinese citizens seem to be especially willing to wear face masks. Maybe it’s not just about pollution and viruses, but a way to make themselves less recognizable to CCT cameras.

  7. I just returned from a road trip, on a mission to see some family, hopefully relax and even do a little storm-chasing.

    Actually, we almost succeeded in intercepting a tornado, or should I say, we DID succeed in intercepting an ALMOST-tornado.

    I’d never been in weather quite like that. My intuition seemed to guide me directly into a forming tornado: The clouds becoming a swirling maelstrom right ahead. I went to put a little distance in between us and the nascent twister, and pull off to the side of the road to watch and film the spectacle. Lo and behold, I also intercepted a gang of professional stormchasers who had stopped at the same location, along with dozens of other onlookers.

    Though the tornado never materialized, we we’re never quite sure whether the thing was just about to drop out of that dark cell and onto our heads. It was as exhilarating as it was unnerving.

    Right before the trip, I felt a somewhat similar charge from nearly stepping on a rattlesnake who had decided to block the entrance to my shed. I couldn’t abide such a creature taking over the place, so I gave him a couple whiffs of 9mm.

    Anyway, it didn’t escape my attention that this road trip, and especially something like storm-chasing, would have been complicated immensely by driving an EV. My GFs little Subie served us well. Good little car.

  8. For US companies China is too tempting. The huge population and minimal bureaucratic red tape gets everyone excited about market share.

    • “minimal bureaucratic red tape”
      Are you kidding? Spend some time in China and then let us know if you still believe this.

      • If you’re amongst the chosen you’ll get right through. No EPA, no EEOC, no ADA. Oh, the laws probably exist, but aren’t enforced if you cut the CCP party member in on the deal.

  9. It’s a good thing Mary is getting the 29 million. It’s a good thing GM, and the rest of the woke
    are losing market share. It’s a good thing they’ll try to replace IC vehicles and equipment with electric devices ill equipped to do the job. It’s a good thing woke companies all over are pandering to one percent of the nation.

    The faster these idiots go out of business and bottoming government revenue the better. Socialism has never ever worked. Apparently Americans have to discover that as did the USSR and other socialist nations.

  10. Sort of a neat video showing the assembly of the GMC Sierra.

    What struck me (other than the fear masks, the green bullshit, and the union bullshit) was how few human beings actually have hands on the assembly.

    https://youtu.be/T0DbsnyBuGc

    Moving production to Chyyyyna or Mexico would let Mary, oh Mary, avoid the union and green bullshit.

  11. Mary Barra may be paid a lot of money relative to prior GM CEOs, but her salary is NOT excessive compared to many other large company CEOs listed at the link below, especially compared with the Rivian CEO, getting $422 million total compensation (2021) for a company that is NOT profitable:

    https://aflcio.org/paywatch/highest-paid-ceos

    More important than the total compensation is what Barra does NOT do for her money: Unlike past automotive manufacturer CEOs, she does NOT battle against government regulations and mandates that her customers do not want to pay for.

    Barra waits for government bureaucrats to tell her what to do. And she does it. That’s not leadership.

    China has a labor cost and energy cost advantage for EV manufacturing. EVs are too expensive for most families when made in the US. Outsourcing EV production to China seems like it will be inevitable.

    Concerning Ford:
    There are two problems causing EV losses:

    (1) Much slower sales than expected. In late 2022 Ford engineers believed EV sales were about half of what the bean counters initially forecasted, which is terrible. , and

    (2) High investments in engineering, prototype tooling, prototype building and joint ventures in battery manufacturing plants are being made for 2024, 2025 and 2026 EVs not yet on sale.

    With problem (1), the engineers are very pessimistic about the huge EV investments, and the bizarre EV business plan (EVs will sell at higher prices than ICEs but are worth less than ICEs to customers).

    Ford is currently a viable company ONLY because of the large profits from selling ICE pickup trucks and ICE large SUVs.

    Ford says it will produce more than 2 million EVs annually by 2026, and projects that EVs will be half of its global sales volume by 2030! The automaker also says that half the global sales of its Lincoln luxury brand will be zero-emissions models by the middle of this decade and that it will electrify the entire portfolio of vehicles by 2030.

    But after selling just 10,866 electric vehicles in the first three months of 2023, Ford lost its position as the second-largest EV maker in the US to GM, and their EV sales goals seem like fairy tales.

    • Richard,

      You’re as predictable as the lead editorial in Pravda, circa 1980. Missing the point – again – entirely. Which is that Barra is an archetype, an example of what’s wrong.

      • Eric, you don’t think it’s interesting and relevant that the Rivian CEO makes more than 14 times what Barra is paid? Would you have attacked if any other reader had made the same comment?
        It’s baffling that Richard has become the whipping boy on this site. He agrees with you most of the time, for crying out loud: “More important than the total compensation is what Barra does NOT do for her money: Unlike past automotive manufacturer CEOs, she does NOT battle against government regulations and mandates that her customers do not want to pay for.” Is that “missing the point” too?
        This kind of shouting down is what I expect from the left. It is beneath you.

        • I hear your Roland –

          But Richard has this passive aggressive streak that gets my back up.Plus he’s a “mask” defender and “vaccine” quibbler.

          • Thanks, Eric. With all due respect, in response to your last Diaper Report, Richard wrote:

            “The masks have one benefit. They identify people who believe everything governments tell them. That’s useful to know.”

            And:

            “[Politicians and bureaucrats] ignored every mask study (and they were all N95 mask studies — I read five of them when Covid hit and soon realized masks were worthless.)”

            He did opine that the Diaper Reports should cease. But since when can’t a consumer of content make such a request? He did not say, “I, Richard Greene, hereby prohibit you from publishing any more Diaper Reports.”

            Yes, he has argued the technicalities of what constitutes a vaccine, and he has said that someone else wearing a mask is not harming you, which in a strict libertarian sense is 100 percent correct. To call him a “mask defender” because of that is absurd.

            He doesn’t need me to defend him, but I respectfully ask that you count to ten and then vigorously refute his arguments with facts and orderly thinking. This is what sets us apart from statist wackos.

            • The problem with Richard is much the same as the problem with Fauci. He can’t make up his mind what he thinks. Or what he says he thinks. He frequently defends the very same things he criticizes at other times.
              Which is why “I don’t care” what he thinks. Right or wrong.

    • Richard,
      I’m not sure if you’re a “true believer” or a master troller…

      Either way, I just hope you’re fully vaccinated and maximally boosted, and triple masked, as you type your comments and live your life!!!

      Wishing you the best,

      Peace, peaches, and happiness!!!

    • Thanks for posting the link to that list, Richard.
      Two comments (on the list, not you):
      1. I wish the creators of the list had included information on what these companies with highly compensated CEOs actually do. Some of them are household names. Others, it is easy to figure out from the name of the company. However, there are others I, at least, never heard of, whose head honchos are pulling down astounding amounts of money. I am curious to know what it takes to generate that kind of loot without getting the feds on your tail.

      2. If I managed to earn what some of these jokers get, I would be gone after one year, and set for life (even after taxes, and even assuming my tax accountant was a real hoser). I simply cannot comprehend what anyone would do with that much money. Simple man, simple dreams, I guess.

  12. Chyna is the testing ground for what’s coming to the USSA, your social credit score will be tied to your CBDC, a digital prison for all.

  13. Oh how lovely, all those people in that photo at the top of Eric’s post are wearing face diapers (Sarcasm). Are they trying to virtue signal to those who are STILL wearing face diapers?

    • For 29 million I’d wear a face diaper AND a rainbow “tuckable” trans swimsuit and stand on any stage on the planet. I wouldn’t take the toxic stabs though even for a billion….

      • David,
        Will you do it for $29 dollars??
        How about $290?
        Or $2,900?
        Or $29,000?
        Or $290,000??
        Since you’ve already stated your character, now we’ll just haggle over your price, as Oscar Wilde would say…

  14. Sorry for this misogynist observation but notice how these woke women are ruining companies. Where is the cigar chomping toxic male when you need one??

    • Lee Iacocca passed a while ago. That’s why the Ford’s first EV got the “Mustang” badge without phones ringing in Dearborn.

      • Old Lee wouldn’t have given a damn. He was a progressive. They just hadn’t progressed as much back in the day.

        • Iacocca was progressive about many things but not the Mustang.

          My Ford lifer father always claimed that the Probe did not become the Mustang in 1993 because Iacocca caught wind of the idea of using the badge on a Japanese-designed front wheel drive car and starting dialing numbers with Dearborn area codes.

          • My bad — the Probe was introduced in the late 80s. The second generation arrived in 1993.

            I owned a 1993. It was the worst new car I ever bought and looked 20 years old by the time I traded it in 2001.

            My kids drive the 2001 Solara which replaced the Probe.

  15. So what is the solution then if they ban ICE vehicles then? Next step will make disconnecting a vehicle or driving an unconnected vehicle a felony.

    Whether it’s a social credit system or UBI it’s about control. It’s really “US” VS “THEM” and you will be coerced. I have no doubts at all.

    If the people were going to stand up to tyranny there would have been a lot more people who didn’t roll up their sleeve for the safe and effective jab. As the old saying goes: “No one can save you; only you can save yourself” or something like that. Maybe people should just become a little more ornery and contrarian, that would be a start at least. Ask questions and don’t be afraid to call BS.

  16. It isn’t just GM and Mary Barra. Ford is building a new Fusion/Mondeo in Chyyyna, but that isn’t coming here … for now.

  17. Reminds me of a song!

    Every breath you take
    And every move you make
    Every bond you break
    Every step you take
    I’ll be watching you

    Every single day
    And every word you say
    Every game you play
    Every night you stay
    I’ll be watching you

    Oh, can’t you see
    You belong to me?
    How my poor heart aches
    With every step you take

    Every move you make
    And every vow you break
    Every smile you fake
    Every claim you stake
    I’ll be watching you

    – The Police

    Must be the social credit theme song or something.

    • Up here in space, I’m looking down on you
      My lasers trace everything you do
      You think you’ve private lives, think nothing of the kind
      There is no true escape, I’m watching all the time

      I’m made of metal
      My circuits gleam
      I am perpetual
      I keep the country clean
      I’m elected electric spy
      I’m protected electric eye

      Always in focus, you can’t feel my stare
      I zoom into you, but you don’t know I’m there
      I take a pride in probing all your secret moves
      My tearless retina takes pictures that can prove

      I’m made of metal
      My circuits gleam
      I am perpetual
      I keep the country clean
      I’m elected electric spy
      I’m protected electric eye

      Electric eye, in the sky
      Feel my stare, always there
      There’s nothing you can do about it
      Develop and expose
      I feed upon your every thought
      And so my power grows

      I’m made of metal
      My circuits gleam
      I am perpetual
      I keep the country clean
      I’m elected electric spy
      I’m protected electric eye

      I’m elected electric spy
      I’m elected, protected, detective, electric eye

      — Judas Priest

  18. The Auto industry is dead to me. If I knew software, I’d develop a workaround for Biden thing’s kill switch. I know one thing about people in the auto industry: they’re lazy. And now sloppy. I think that a workaround can be developed, implemented and legalized.

    Currently, there is no law that says that you have to have a catalytic converter when there is no inspection to detect one. All a state has to do is kill their inspection program and decriminize bypassing automtoive systems. The successful states in this will bypass. The unsuccessful won’t. Am I optimistic? Not really, but this isn’t 1974 anymore either. More people are awake than ever before.

    • A lot of us are working on it. A successful system will be sophisticated enough to plausibly spoof reported data, (since the surveillance state is firmly established) and render the vehicle entirely owner controlled.

      Who cares if it’s legalized? Time is decades past for some initiative and resistance activities. If you aren’t 3D printing your weapons today you’re not really trying. If your seat belt buzzer isn’t defeated, you must be ok with it. And the vaccinators are getting their own rewards.

      I have been profoundly influenced by “The Art of War”. When you are weak, retreat, hide, defend. That’s nothing like surrender and cooperate. When the enemy is complacent, toss in a grenade. Freedom always wins, chaos is freedom and always beats central planning, because it has a better plan.

      • I’m not printing weapons because I have an over abundance of them already. Ammo too, and enough components to make more. A lot more. I saw that coming back in the early 90s, when you couldn’t find primers, and swore “never again”.

  19. Once upon a time, even corporate execs were paid according to what they produced. Meanwhile, currently, what they produce appears to have nothing to do with it. Mary Barra is presiding over a company in rapid decline, and yet she draws $29 million per annum? Help me with the math.
    By all accounts, though China does have a social credit score system, apparently you have to stick your head up pretty high before it gets whack-a-moled.
    Not so here, even without the social credit score thing.
    I wonder, how does she reconcile her pursuit of the Chinese market while China is one of the most racist nations on the planet, and has been for centuries? I doubt you find many biracial couples there.

  20. Nothing prevents this from being instituted in new ICE vehicles with all their internetyness now. Kill switches are part of the “infrastructure” bill.

    China could be the testing ground, sure, but I don’t think that’s necessary.

    Every rule, regulation, and dictate that will move your freedom to a privilege is being enacted already.

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