Yesterday, the Ford Motor Company announced that thirty thousand jobs will be cut and fourteen plants will be closed. And the great-grandson of founder Henry Ford says this is the "Way Forward". Well, maybe. We'd better pray he's right, and we do.
But if the way forward for American manufacturing is massive layoffs, massive shutdowns, lost market share and big dreams, the American people have a right to ask what is going on. Sure, unemployment is low. But median income growth — the family take-home — is a lot lower.
America is supposed to compete and win on the high-tech frontier, we're told. But if cars aren't high-tech enough, what is?
Hear about searching for the future of American manufacturing and the American dream.
Walter McManus, Director of Automotive Analysis at the University of Michigan's Transportation Research Institute and former executive director of forecasting analysis with JD Power and Associates, a marketing information firm.;
Don Rosenfield, Senior Lecturer at the Sloan School of Management, and Director of the Leaders for Manufacturing Fellows program at MIT.;
Donald Grimes, Senior Research Associate with the Institute of Labor and Industrial Relations at the University of Michigan. He worked during college at the Ford plant in Wixom, Michigan, which is on the latest list of closures.
This program aired on January 25, 2006.