Lee Iacocca is the man who rescued Chrysler Corporation from its death. He's now 82 years old and has a new book, here are some excerpts. by Kipper Mathews
Sunday, April 20, 2008
These words by Lee Iacocca are excerpts from his new book and have been circulating the net lately. I couldn't help but spread the word as his opinions are my feelings as well.
I am not taking any responsibility for their accuracy, I'm just passing on the information received.
Lee Iacocca Says:
'Am I the only guy in this country who's fed up with what's happening? Where the hell is our outrage?
We should be screaming bloody murder. We've got a gang of clueless bozos steering our ship of state right over a cliff, we've got corporate gangsters stealing us blind, and we can't even clean up after a hurricane much less build a hybrid car.
But instead of getting mad, everyone sits around and nods their heads when the politicians say, 'Stay the course'. Stay the course? You've got to be kidding. This is America , not the damned 'Titanic'. I'll give you a sound bite: 'Throw all the bums out!'
You might think I'm getting senile, that I've gone off my rocker, and maybe I have. But someone has to speak up. I hardly recognize this country anymore.
The most famous business leaders are not the innovators but the guys in handcuffs. While we're fiddling in Iraq , the Middle East is burning and nobody seems to know what to do. And the press is waving 'pom-poms' instead of asking hard questions. That's not the promise of the 'America' my parents and yours traveled across the ocean for. I've had enough. How about you?
I'll go a step further. You can't call yourself a patriot if you're not outraged. This is a fight I'm ready and willing to have.
The Biggest 'C' is Crisis ! ( see the ten C's in his book )
Leaders are made, not born. Leadership is forged in times of crisis. It's easy to sit there with your feet up on the desk and talk theory. Or send someone else's kids off to war when you've never seen a attlefield yourself. It's another thing to lead when your world comes tumbling down.
On September 11, 2001, we needed a strong leader more than any other time in our history. We needed a steady hand to guide us out of the ashes. A Hell of a Mess, so here's where we stand. We're immersed in a bloody war with no plan for winning and no plan for leaving. We're running the biggest deficit in the history of the country. We're losing the manufacturing edge to Asia, while our once-great companies are getting slaughtered by health care costs. Gas prices are skyrocketing, and nobody in power has a coherent energy policy. Our schools are in trouble. Our borders are like sieves. The middle class is being squeezed every which way. These are times that cry out for leadership.
But when you look around, you've got to ask: 'Where have all the leaders gone?' Where are the curious, creative communicators? Where are the people of character, courage, conviction, omnipotence and common sense?
I may be a sucker for alliteration, but I think you get the point.
Name me a leader who has a better idea for homeland security than making us take off our shoes in airports and throw away our shampoo?
We've spent billions of dollars building a huge new bureaucracy, and all we know how to do is react to things that have already happened.
Name me one leader who emerged from the crisis of Hurricane Katrina. Congress has yet to spend a single day evaluating the response to the hurricane, or demanding accountability for the decisions that were made in the crucial hours after the storm.
Everyone's hunkering down, fingers crossed, hoping it doesn't happen again. Now, that's just crazy. Storms happen. Deal with it. Make a plan. Figure out what you're going to do the next time.
Name me an industry leader who is thinking creatively about how we can restore our competitive edge in manufacturing. Who would have believed that there could ever be a time when 'The Big Three' referred to Japanese car companies? How did this happen, and more important, what are we going to do about it?
Name me a government leader who can articulate a plan for paying down the debit, or solving the energy crisis or managing the health care problem. The silence is deafening. But these are the crises that are eating away at our country and milking the middle class dry.
I have news for the gang in Congress. We didn't elect you to sit on your asses and do nothing and remain silent while our democracy is being hijacked and our greatness is being replaced with mediocrity. What is everybody so afraid of? That some bonehead on Fox News will call them a name? Give me a break. Why don't you guys show some spine for a change?
Hey, I'm not trying to be the voice of gloom and doom here. I'm trying to light a fire. I'm speaking out because I have hope. I believe in America. In my lifetime I've had the privilege of living through some of America's greatest moments. I've also experienced some of our worst crises: the 'Great Depression', 'World War II', the 'Korean War', the 'Kennedy Assassination', the 'Vietnam War', the 1970s oil crisis and the struggles of recent years culminating with 9/11. If I've learned one thing, it's this:
'You don't get anywhere by standing on the sidelines waiting for somebody else to take action. Whether it's building a better car or building a better future for our children, we all have a role to play. That's the challenge I'm raising in this book. It's a call to 'Action' for people who, like me, believe in America. It's not too late, but it's getting pretty close. So let's shake off the crap and go to work. Let's tell 'em all we've had 'enough.'
I wish there was a person running for President that had the courage to say it like it is, as Lee has done here.
Maybe we could talk him into it.
Even if he is 82.
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I was thinking the same as David S. Iacocca's analysis of America's condition is dead on; but his prescription is simply, "Something has to be done!"; he seems almost indifferent to what that something is, as long as it gets done.
American doesn't need a leader who thinks like that. It does, though, need more voters who think like that, to open the door for the leaders your country needs.
Lee is right! We need to keep waking up others about what is happening and help break the mind control that keeps the masses snoozing through these traumas. Everyone can start by cutting the cords off your television sets!
As usual, most of the comments so far are critical of the criticism. Too bad! Read your history, the founders of our nation seldom agreed but were able to put their differences aside so as to create a government unparalleled in the history of the world. Wake up! This is not a Republican or Democrat problem, it's an American problem! ! I'm sick and tired of partisan politics. We need people elected to public office at all levels that are statesman enough to put their personal bias aside long enough to do something good for their country. I believe, with all my heart, that there has never been, since The Good Lord created the world, a nation that has done as much to improve the standard of living of people worldwide, and ask less for our services, as the United States of America. Yet we have few friends among nations of the world. We need to step back and take a good look at ourselves in the mirror. And we need to put God first in our lives and next to that America!
(note: in addition to the book, "Where Have All the Leaders Gone?," Lee also has a web site up, leeiacocca dot net)
i respect and admire Lee Iacocca, and sympathize with Lee's frustration, but am suspicious of what he would propose for relief of those frustrations. methinks he advocates for the thing that has brought us to these same frustrations - a vicious circle devoid of timeless wisdom - a timeless wisdom obtained by our Founding Fathers
they got off the merry-go-round - we should've never got back on.they became powerful with the knowledge - we have made ourselves powerless and easy marks for the type of leadership Lee desires.
Lee askes, "Where Have All the Leaders Gone?" answer, they are here, they are among us, but they are not yet popular enough, not of the type Lee, and the powerless, looks for. when Lee and enough of the powerless, "wake up" (credit: Aimee Allen) and see:
there are different kinds of leadership,
the modern typical Politician leader is the wrong leadership choice,
stop expecting leadership of the good kind (re Ron Paul, et.al) to be of the kind expected by the powerless, stop hearing Politician Speak where there is none,
then Lee will be relived of his frustrations - God willing and our due diligence, he shall live to see it.
To Davis S. On Lee Iacocca not telling what should be done.... It\'s not his job ... He\'s a retired American citizen with an excellent viewpoint. When he faced a crisis in his job, he dealt with it, and succeeded beyond our wildest dreams! This man has earned a greater right than any of us to call an spade a spade in any forum! Iacocca never forgot about the little guy, the employee, the human factor in the equation. He saved a company, saved jobs, and payed back the government in record time due to the success of the minivan! He\'s not on government payroll. He has the right to remind those who are on gov\'t payroll that they aren\'t doing what they were payed to do! Iacocca didn\'t face his crisis with concerns about his golden payout; he actually chose to work for $1 salary with a plan to turn Chrysler around... AND HE DID. Who in the government can say that!?!?!?
Even though Lee Iacocca is 82, I would still vote for him as president. He is a lot sharper than what we have seen up there on the Hill so far. I bet it would not be long before he would turn this country around and make us proud to be in the U.S.A. once again.
What the hell happened to dodge/chrysler where I cannot get a straight answerr to the 2001 dodge ram problem of the ABS and Brtake light on at the same time. No codes, no advice, just BSS from every dealer. Do we really have to gut and replace everything/ buy a new truck to fix the SOB. You will be sorry, my mother is older than you, and at 94 years, she can whip your stupid ass! And and any of your decendents! corporate or family!