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Old 04-05-2009, 07:26 AM
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Those who are ignorant of history are doomed to repeat it.

Ran When Parked


I read this on the blogspot and I am transferring it here for everyone to think about regarding General Motors. GM has actually been moving up in reliability, and some of it's new offerings show turnaround with better reliability and shall I say pizzazz? But for those of us old enough to know and remember, when Milano was dropped from the Alfa badge, things changed. I remembering getting into an Alfetta and feeling that vague transmission shifting and thinking "not like my spider."

March 24, 2009
Great Automotive Failures: Alfa Romeo Alfasud.




If you drove an Alfa Romeo in the 1960s, it was a beautifully-designed and technologically-advanced masterpiece of a car that would turn heads whereever you went, even in Italy.

This all changed when the Italian government (who owned Alfa Romeo at the time) decided to open up a factory at Pomigliano d'Arco outside of Naples. The social motivation for that is that while the north of Italy was industrialized, the south was still largely agricultural and accordingly poor. The idea was that by installing a major car factory there would improve the situation and help the south industrialize. Alfa also needed this model to compete with the economy car segment that was dominated by Fiat but growing in size. Put two and two together and you got the Alfasud, a car that was supposed to be economical and help the south industrialize, both in the sense that it would create factory jobs on location and in the sense that unlike a Montreal, families with lower incomes could in theory afford one.

So, imagine you are an Alfa nut at the Turin International Auto Show in 1971 and you see the new Alfasud. First off it looks more like an MG 1100 than, say, a GTV. But you can get past that, it's an economy car after all, not a touring car. And with that mindset, you'll pardon the car for not having a brake booster or a tachometer (the booster was later added.) You pop the hood instead of finding the venerable Alfa four cylinder twin cam, you see a boxer engine - weird but who knows, it could be interesting, you're willing to give it a shot. Closer inspection of the engine bay reveals that it's front wheel drive. So be it, it probably handles qui-- wait, front wheel drive? In an Alfa? Blasphemy!

Actually, Alfa had been experimenting with front wheel drive since the early 1960s but hadn't implemented it into production for various reasons. Nevertheless, a front wheel drive Alfa was met with huge skepticism by a crowd of racing fans who had grown up watching GTAs tear up tracks all over Europe and the U.S. And while the water-cooled 1200cc boxer engine wasn't an orthodox engine choice and was far from fast, it was appreciated for its high-revving nature.


Well folks, the government knows better with GM and Obama will show them all! Fire the CEO, that will show them.

General Motors, you will go the way of Alfa. Liberal Left, you may be well meaning, but you don't see the long term consequences (and unintended) of your (hopefully) well meaning actions. (Far right, you're just as bad)

Now look at that spider (wolf in sheeps clothing) that was just sold on the Alfaholics website (1600 sleeper with a V6) and follow the tale (tail, you won't catch it with your 4 cylinder) of the Leopard on the Alfabb, now that is what Alfa should'a, could'a have built!!

BTW, hybrids ???; give me a European diesel econobox or a BMW twin turbo anyday. Economy, low price, simplicity and if you want it, expensive, diesel twin turbo performance. I'd buy a Bimmer in a heart beat, except for that 55,000 to 65,000 little problem. BTW, think about who wrote the (again, supposedly well meaning) regs that have kept the world's new cars from easily entering other countries since the sixties. We had a lot of choices in the 60's until new "safety, economy" rules starting popping up. But other countries do it too.
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Last edited by Dr.G; 04-05-2009 at 09:05 AM.
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Old 04-05-2009, 08:36 AM
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Very good rant ++

I've never bought a GM car, and disagree with the governing classes taking my money, through taxes, and giving it to GM--for nothing.

Canada is doing the bailout nonsense as well.
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Old 04-05-2009, 09:12 AM
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Yes, I was ranting

I edited out the part about government rules screwing up my profession and freedom to practice.

Politicos write a bunch of rules, get their lifetime pension, are out in a few years, and leave us to sort through their rules wasteland.
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Old 04-05-2009, 10:44 AM
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Those Who Are Ignorant of History Are Doomed to Repeat It

Without getting out my Bartlett's or the paper I used the quote in, I believe the correct historical quote by Santayana was: "Those who don't study history are doomed to repeat it."

However, the quote that I remember from my college history days was: "History repeats itself and those who don’t learn from the mistakes of the past are destined to repeat them;" which I've been unable to effectively and authoritatively source. I suspect it might be a combination of various quotes.

While you seem to disagree with the government bail-out, do you propose that we should just let GM and Chrysler fail and take the peripheral industries with them --- including jobs and who knows how many foreclosures and who knows what else as a result. While I don't like it, and I'm certainly not benefiting from the bail-out, I'm certainly against ignoring a situation that could bring the entire U.S. economy down and its ultimate global result and effect.
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Last edited by Pat Braden; 04-05-2009 at 06:49 PM.
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Old 04-05-2009, 12:35 PM
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For a little recurring history:

Google: Government Promotions and Failures, March 29, Bob Hoye

Should come up--as you know Cheryl I don't know how to post things that are in my email.

The piece has a cartoon as well.

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Old 04-05-2009, 01:35 PM
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George Santayana


"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it," (hence, "Santayana's Aphorism on Repetitive Consequences")


Born Jorge Agustín Nicolás Ruíz de Santayana y Borrás


Keep in mind ALFA ROMEO during its' fondly remembered long Golden Age was always state owned enterprise (the state being the Italian Government). To me, that makes Ayn Rand's love of the product of this marque, quite ironic. Almost all new car models suffer from teething problems at their introduction and we've all heard quality stories associated with the products of the Milan factory. Maybe the Japaneese companies that opened factories, in the then, economically lagging, southern regions of the US, weren't exercising good judgement? What practical solution are you offering? Democracy is the worst form of government until you consider the alternatives (Churchill) But it is so much easier to bash. BTW - Wagoners plan was totally unrealistic, based on rosey assumptions and a need for open-ended influx of cash from the Feds. The Obama team seems to want to get it done once; we have done successful car bailouts previously, not a bad thing to my mind.
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Old 04-05-2009, 01:38 PM
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Actually, the correct quote predates Santa Ana and is "those who fail to study history are condemned to repeat it". I apologize sincerely for being unable to recall the person to whom it is credited. I'm sure it will come to me sometime tomorrow at work.

And Dr. G, I couldn't agree with you more with one exception. I believe they do know the results of their actions. I truly believe it is part of their agenda to socialize America and implement one party rule. The destruction of capitalism is merely the next step in what began with FDR back in the 30's. As everyone knows the automotive industry isn't the only place such shenanigans are taking place

Vic.
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Old 04-05-2009, 01:41 PM
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roger, thank you for correcting me in both places. You are exactly correct!

We successfully bailed out Chrysler but Lee Iacoca was more honorable than the current batch of CEO's. He paid back the loans early and with interest. I understand a few banks have already paid back their bail out loans with interest.

Vic
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Old 04-05-2009, 03:38 PM
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Well said

I remember the Chrysler bailout, and I hope the same for GM.

I think that V6 in a spider (rear transmission) would have been a winner for Alfa. The 8C is a winner but unaffordable for the vast expanse of Americana.
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Old 04-05-2009, 03:49 PM
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Don't worry so much guys...nobody will destroy your precious capitalism. You rant as if the Dems are actually Stalinistic Communists...they aren't. Get real.
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Old 04-05-2009, 05:33 PM
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Alex is right. The Dems are not communists. They are socialists.
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Old 04-05-2009, 05:43 PM
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Larry is right, though the US gov actually had controlling interest in several major financial institutions prior to the Obama admin. The TARP was originally proposed by the previous admin....I think his name was Bush and if I recall he was a Republican. So does that mean that the Republicans are Socialists too...... oh my God.....were screwed....
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Old 04-05-2009, 05:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyC View Post
Larry is right, though the US gov actually had controlling interest in several major financial institutions prior to the Obama admin. The TARP was originally proposed by the previous admin....I think his name was Bush and if I recall he was a Republican. So does that mean that the Republicans are Socialists too...... oh my God.....were screwed....
Actually, now that you mention it, yes, the Reps are also now socialists.
I think the way it goes is something like this...

Democrats: "Vote for us. We're really great!"
Republicans: "Wait, no, vote for us. We're different but we're really Democrats, too!"
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Old 04-05-2009, 05:58 PM
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Mi amigos

Alfa Spider V6 with a 50\50 weight distribution, next fantasy project. And yes, I'm changing the subject from politics to that beautiful V6 and those creative individuals who put them in spiders. Watch for the exploding guibos.

And I can't beat them so I'm going to run for office, can I count on your vote?

Last edited by Dr.G; 04-05-2009 at 06:09 PM.
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Old 04-05-2009, 06:14 PM
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Those Who Are Ignorant of History Are Doomed to Repeat It

Quote:
Originally Posted by sharps4590 View Post
Actually, the correct quote predates Santa Ana and is "those who fail to study history are condemned to repeat it". I apologize sincerely for being unable to recall the person to whom it is credited. I'm sure it will come to me sometime tomorrow at work... Vic.
I hope you come up with it. I've looked in Bartlett's Familiar Quotes, Bartlett's Unfamiliar Quotes, Oxford Dictionary of Quotes, Dictionary of History Quotes and several others. I've been unable to even source it back to Santayana, let alone predate back from there. I can only source the quote to Santayana on the Internet using the source below.

Here's the source link for the Santayana quote:

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition. Edited by E.D. Hirsch, Jr., Joseph F. Kett, and James Trefil. Copyright © 2002 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Subtle
For a little recurring history:

Google: Government Promotions and Failures, March 29, Bob Hoye...
I believe this is the link to bail-out information that Bob was unable to post...I didn't see any cartoon unless he's referring to the bear and bull animations...

Link : Safe Haven | Preservation of Capital |
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Last edited by Pat Braden; 04-05-2009 at 07:15 PM.
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