February 17, 2010 - San Francisco, CA - PipeLineNews.org - Toyota Motor Corporation has been by most accounts the world's most successful automobile manufacturer for many years, a lofty domain secured officially in 2008 when the company dethroned the pretender, General Motors.
The omnipresence of Toyota's marquee was based upon a deserved reputation for quality which far surpassed that of its domestic competitors.
Of note, a JD Power quality study published in the summer of 2009 once again declared Toyota the leader in automobile quality, a position it has had a lock on for ages. An AP article published at the time literally screamed, "Toyota Still King, Toyota, which overtook GM last year as the world's biggest automaker, dominated the J.D. Power honors. It swept awards in 10 vehicle categories, and its plant in Japan that builds the Lexus SC 430 and Toyota Corolla took the award for top plant. For GM, only two brands performed above average..." [source, Toyota Still King, June 22, 2009, http://www.mlive.com/auto/index.ssf/2009/06/jd_power_and_associates_detroi.html]
The brand was so popular that a particular model the Prius, a hybrid vehicle, became a cult classic among the enviro-crowd, a symbol bespeaking [rightly or wrongly] the owner's devotion to the small carbon footprint lifestyle so in vogue among today's progressives.
Recently however, all that has changed. Almost overnight Toyota has been made the subject of an unholy crusade over alleged problems with sticky accelerator pedals causing massive product recalls and a resultant loss in public confidence.
Note, sticky accelerators and other, often imagined or conjured up "safety" issues have been the mainstay bane of the auto industry since Ralph Nader created that class of lawsuit in 1963, much to the delight of sleazy trial attorneys.
Most ominous however, and it's a very bad sign, is the degree to which the Obama administration [official nanny of Government Motors] and Congressional Democrat leaders, have entered this fray in an aggressive and transparent move calculated to scuttle Toyota's success with the obvious intention of aiding the much [and deservedly so] maligned GM, which remains on life support.
This line of attack though little commented upon [especially regarding the administration's motives] has not totally escaped media scrutiny...it's just that you have to actively search it out in order to find it.
For example, the Financial/National Post, an Ontario, Canada based publication, stated in a scathing February 3 piece, "There can be little doubt that Toyota, the world's greatest auto maker in recent years, has become the victim of much more than another typical out-of-control All-American media frenzy. When top-line political gamesman such as U.S. Transport Secretary Ray LaHood, Congressional pit bull Henry Waxman, and conniving United Auto Workers executives start piling on, this is clearly much bigger sport that the usual ritual public lynching of auto executives, a routine occurrence in Washington. The attack on Toyota, at this time of U.S. economic weakness and populist excess, is fast turning into a great American nationalist assault on a foreign corporation, an economic war. The White House has denied any such motivation on the part of the United States. But that denial lacks credibility." [source, National Post, The War on Toyota, http://www.nationalpost.com/news/story.html?id=2519112#ixzz0flKUAJTc]
GM's desperate condition has not stopped the UAW's boss [Obama's new partner] from also piling on, "Toyota, UAW Vice President Bob King said...What we have known for a while, the global public is waking up to...Toyota Corporation has lost its way. Toyota Corporation has forgotten what built its success." [source Reuters, UAW's King says Toyota management has lost its way, http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE61C0KK20100213]
Likewise one of Congress' most detestable Democrat bullies, Henry Waxman plans a full show trial disguised as a hearing, in the coming weeks.
" Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-Beverly Hills) said that although Toyota was reassuring the public in the last two weeks that it had identified the cause, it was telling House investigators that getting to the bottom of the issue was very difficult...Waxman has previously pointed out Toyota's contradictory statements..."They told our staff that the causes are very hard to identify and refused to state that the two recalls had totally resolved the problem"...Waxman, who chairs the House Energy and Commerce Committee, has asked Toyota to explain the contradiction. The committee has scheduled a hearing Feb. 25... a third committee scheduled a hearing. The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation committee will hold a hearing March 2 and has requested briefings by Toyota and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration." [source, LA Times, Rep. Henry Waxman casts further doubt on Toyota,http://articles.latimes.com/2010/feb/10/business/la-fi-toyota10-2010feb10]
As part of this effort, Transportation Secty LaHood [Hood, my isn't that an appropriate name for this brand of thuggery] told Toyota owners to stop driving their vehicles, has increasingly been critical of the company in media statements and just a few days ago requested information from the Japanese manufacturer in a 23 page demand.
The administration's motivation here is obvious and of course the MSM has chimed in as they always do in such cases with - their antics following the exploits of Balloon Boy a not too distant memory. What is a bit different here is that the lefty press is in bed ideologically with this president, so the motivation to beat Toyota up must be nearly irresistible.
In any political analysis of the left, attempting to sort through the various isms associated with totalitarian statism, some observers point out that one of the essential differences between State Socialism [fascism, Nazism] and Marxism-Leninism [Soviet style communism or its kin, Maosim - though many would argue that Maoism is more properly Trotskyism] is that the former allows for a limited degree of private ownership of the means of production.
For example, in Nazi Germany while the ownership of the Krupp weapons empire was allowed to remain [nominally] in the hands of its founding family, the company's direction, products and output was mandated by Berlin.
As many of us watch the steady progress of hard leftism at the hands of Mr. Obama and his progressive cohorts, this lesson must be kept in mind as we ponder ultimate questions such as how free peoples become enslaved under the guise of democracy.
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