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Will Detroit run out of road?

In the next two weeks we'll see what chance there is for any of those on the waiting list to get their plug-in Chevy Volt, or whether there'll be a Chrysler 2010 model. On December 2, the automakers are to deliver their own plans for salvation to the Congress.

In the next two weeks we'll see what chance there is for any of those on the waiting list to get their plug-in Chevy Volt, or whether there'll be a Chrysler 2010 model. On December 2, the automakers are to deliver their own plans for salvation to the Congress. Then the CEOs of the Big Three American automakers will once again go before Congressional inquisition: a Senate Committee on Thursday, a House Committe on Friday.

If the auto CEOs can read, they can surely see the road map that is being laid out for them. Here's a direct quote from a letter sent to Congress by two current cabinet secretaries. The Bush Adminisitration expects the Detroit automakers to reduce "labor, management, and legacy costs; debt structure; dealer network costs; capacity utilization; fuel efficiency standards, and plans for new and existing products."

The head of the United Auto Workers says his union's ready to re-negotiate deals with the automakers. There's considerable pressure on the UAW to make concessions to save the Big Three. One thing that may go, the job bank. It allows some laid-off union workers to collect over 90% of their regular salary while not working, or for doing community service. Speaking of laid off: Chrysler just cut a fraction of its salaried workforce. Their last day was just before Thanksgiving.

It is still not clear the Big Three can make a convincing case their firms will be ever again be viable and competitive. And that could be mean no Congressional loan. Observers with no skin in the game are rich with ideas on what the auto makers should do and how their could go through bankruptcy and survive. One reporter thinks some of us are suffering campaign withdrawl so he offers the future of the American automakers as a possible substitute horse race. In that spirit, please vote your conscience:

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Insult or Effrontery?

Guess who else wants a federal bail-out? Mighty Telsa Motors. Read all about it.

A global look turned up fourteen companies that intend to bring out electric vehicles. That's a big jump from a year ago when there were only two: GM and Tesla. And, of course, neither one of them is a sure thing for the future.