GM "Scapegoats" 2 Employees, Places Engineers On Paid Leave

Tyler Durden's picture


In the interests of transparency and on the heels of Mary Barra's suggestion that some of those involved in the ignition switch problem are still employed at the firm, she has decided to place 2 employees on paid leave...


To distract from the main headlines, GM has created a "speak up for safety" spy-on-your-neighbor plan as part of her safety-first strategy.

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Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:22 | 4642590 icanhasbailout
icanhasbailout's picture

Absent sabotage, there is no way an engineer is institutionally responsible for this decision. There's no company of any reasonable size in the world that puts business decision-making into engineers' hands.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:24 | 4642601 Cangaroo.TNT
Cangaroo.TNT's picture

I agree.  An engineer's M.O. is often "We'll get it right if it takes every dime you've got."

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:27 | 4642607 GetZeeGold
GetZeeGold's picture



They couldn't have just sourced the problem to a faulty slide ruler?

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:37 | 4642649 insanelysane
insanelysane's picture

I always make sure I have at least 2 emails showing that I have notified management of potential issues with systems and that management has acknowledged receiving the information.  It doesn't have to be explicit just an email exchange that shows information was sent up the chain.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:51 | 4642689 zerozulu
zerozulu's picture

Engineers on paid leave needed vacation anyway.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 09:15 | 4642771 Fukushima Sam
Fukushima Sam's picture

That's it, blame "the expert" for the problems.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 09:32 | 4642816 Vampyroteuthis ...
Vampyroteuthis infernalis's picture

As an young engineer, I see plenty of this crap all the time. Those in management who have no clue on how to engineer themselves out of a hole give projects to the worker bees that will never work. Prime example, Lockheed's F-35. That is the biggest POS ever!

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 09:44 | 4642833 MontgomeryScott
MontgomeryScott's picture

You DO realize, of course, that more people got 'paid leave' for this GM Crap-switch fuckup that has supposedly killed 13; than those who are responsible for the so-called 'FAILURE OF IMAGINATION' that resulted in the successful false-flag attack on the United States that left 3,000 dead and billions of dollars in property damage (in order that the Pentagram and the MIC could get a contract to build that POS F-35), don't you?

G.M. 'responsibility chain': TWO (and, probably NOT, in reality).

9/11 'responsibility chain': ZERO.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 10:09 | 4642947 Vampyroteuthis ...
Vampyroteuthis infernalis's picture

MS, it is quite simple with all MIC contracts. I used to work for one of the theives. Here is how the game works. First of all, intentionally underbid a project from the start to win the contract realizing it will at minimum take 10-20% more in cost to actually deliver goods. Once you are awarded the contract, intentionally sandbag the process by overhiring and sending K Street reps reporting (lying) to CONgress on how results are delayed. Since the military is dumping money into this prize possession, they will never cut it. Oh, think of the jobs!! Executives pad their pockets and the taxpayers get the shaft. God bless the USA.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 10:16 | 4642974 Chuck Norris
Chuck Norris's picture

You mean this isn't Bush's fault?

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 10:22 | 4642988 Buckaroo Banzai
Buckaroo Banzai's picture

How about we fire the dumb bitch who runs GM?

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 10:07 | 4642937 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

Thrown under the very bus they helped build.

Pretty accurate vid, BTW. 5 people in a room. 4 of them simply redundant, unproductive consumers of Oxygen.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 09:16 | 4642772 SamAdams
SamAdams's picture

Samuel Bush was an Engineer and served as Director of the Buckeye Casting Co.  Buckeye was a Rockefeller company that sold train parts to the Harriman railroad.  Of course we all know that Sam's son, Prescott, was a director of Union Banking Company.  Union Banking was a Harriman, Brown Brothers company.

My point is that Engineers do sometimes direct major corporations.  Albeit, many of these have never actually designed a widget in their life.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:53 | 4642700 Joe Davola
Joe Davola's picture

They're ISO-9000 and force that on all their suppliers, therefore it can't be a failure of procedures or policies.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 17:54 | 4645111 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

If the policy is:  "make everything that you can get away with out of plastic", then yeah, no policy failure!

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 09:20 | 4642787 Van Halen
Van Halen's picture

Cangaroo - Up The Irons!

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:29 | 4642611 One And Only
One And Only's picture

The government is responsible.

GM has been a shitty company for some time now. They are over paid to make shitty cars. Without a government bailout and government sponsored sub-prime auto loans this shit stain of a company wouldn't be in the business of making malfunctioning cars.

A free market would have prevented this problem from ever occurring. Possibly saving lives in the process.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 09:00 | 4642721 BLOTTO
BLOTTO's picture

Yea...its hard enough getting up Monday to Friday to go be a conforming modern day slave in this rigged life...


But now - you might not even make it to work safely in your vehicle because it might blow the fuck up on the drive in...


Thu, 04/10/2014 - 09:32 | 4642815 SamAdams
SamAdams's picture

You could always boycott GM.  I have for several years now.  Will not buy another GM car... well, except for classics of course.

People think I'm awful for boycotting an American company.  Whatever, GM and the rest of the major corporations are nothing but a gold mine for executives and bankers.  The days of trickle down wealth are gone (seen Detroit lately)?  They refused to modernize technology until the Asians had already taken their markets.  They took on huge debt borrowed from banks that created the money from thin-air, then defaulted and charged it to our labor.  And now they want me to buy a car from them?  Really? 

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 09:56 | 4642882 seek
seek's picture

You're not awful.

The car companies have been using the "buy American" mantra to milk undeserved profits from the public in the US since the 1970s. Competition and failure is good, in the mid-70s cars were true piles of shit and the Japanese import invasion on the 80s raised the quality level of all cars immensely.

Conversely companies like GM that survive through financial extortion are dragging down the entire country. GM, GM management, GM financial (whichever name they're using today) and the unions all need to die and make room for a real car company, instead of this crony-capitalist abomination of a state-supported bank that makes cars.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:31 | 4642629 booboo
booboo's picture

"Comrade Barra, Dear Leader suggest choosing several workers to blame, preferably none of our unionistas and he reminds you that the Aleutian Islands need gulag cooks at this time.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:41 | 4642645 TideFighter
TideFighter's picture

The switch component was both on and off at the same time. Sotero Manufacturing Corporation.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:45 | 4642672 rtalcott
rtalcott's picture

You could not be more correct...this is not even a good effort at a cover-up...bring out the ill fitting red wigs and let's show them how it's done!

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 10:00 | 4642896 RaymondKHessel
RaymondKHessel's picture

Note who was NOT suspended -- the executive who headed GM's Global Engineering from 2008 to 2011 and who was in charge of GM Product Development from 2011 to 2013.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 10:11 | 4642959 Zymurguy
Zymurguy's picture

Correct.  This is absolutely bullshit - engineers are no more responsible than the guy that cleans the bathrooms at their factories.  If an engineer there produced documentation showing these switches were not problematic its because he/she was pressured to do so.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 11:06 | 4643229 Peanut Butter E...
Peanut Butter Engineer's picture

When there is profit to be made engineers may or may not get any additional bonus except for the regular salary while the managers get to enjoy the extra pie. When there need to be an escape goat , engineers will be the first one they throw under the bus even if many parts were used due to cost savings from managers decision.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 13:35 | 4644029 Totentänzerlied
Totentänzerlied's picture

In the USSR, all industrial and commercial accidents and problems (and as we know, there were many, many) were summarily blamed on any of 3 groups: bandits, saboteurs, and wreckers.

Yet another "oh, they're copying the Bolsheviks again" moment for me.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 14:28 | 4644233 forensicator
forensicator's picture

Here's what an engineer deals with daily, there is no way they are to blame.


Thu, 04/10/2014 - 17:48 | 4645075 thethirdcoast
thethirdcoast's picture

This is Morton-Thiokol O-rings all over again.

Engineers trying to the right thing get scapegoated and lynched in the media while management pukes with blood on their hands skate.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:24 | 4642597 Squid-puppets a...
Squid-puppets a-go-go's picture

im betting the engineers that were put on leave were the only ones to strongly voice concerns to their executives of the dodgy parts.

because that kinda troublesome pessimism is an immediate grey mark on your human resources record

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:31 | 4642627 Tabarnaque
Tabarnaque's picture

As sad as it is, you are probably right.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:54 | 4642692 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

engineers always want to overdesign stuff. it is the execs who force them to rubber stamp substandard crap. they do accountants the same way so they get a bigger bonus. the dollar per part they saved went straight into executive pay. hang them all.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 10:26 | 4643011 centerline
centerline's picture

Bingo.  I see it all the time.  "Business" overtakes ethics all day long.  Those of us who stand up and fight pay for it.  But, I prefer to sleep at night.

In my case, my work requires a license and a signature.  So, the proverbial buck stops with me.  There is no getting around me.

In the case of many other things, management can just sidestep, threaten, etc. to make things happen.  In my opinion, criminal actions against the public.  Hang em high.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 10:19 | 4642980 earnyermoney
earnyermoney's picture

I'm betting the executives included Mary B. These two probably locked horns with her over the years. Time for retribution.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:24 | 4642600 Seasmoke
Seasmoke's picture

Boy it sucks when you draw the short straws. 

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:28 | 4642615 Cangaroo.TNT
Cangaroo.TNT's picture

It sounds like a bad joke.  A dago and a kike engineer walk into the CEO's office....

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:54 | 4642704 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

kike engineer, good one!

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:24 | 4642604 googlenerd
googlenerd's picture

GM...the new NASA.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 09:22 | 4642792 Van Halen
Van Halen's picture

GM's doing Muslim outreach too?

Well, they ARE near Dearborn, Michigan...

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:24 | 4642605 medium giraffe
medium giraffe's picture

Wasn't Barra head of QC?  What a fucking joke.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:27 | 4642609 new game
new game's picture

we are running out of choices for great quality everydays cars. toyota is becoming gm ized and honda is left standing alone.

recently sat in a avalon and compared it to my 06 - everything cheapened. independant suspension pulled from corollas.

toyota running on reputation. 08 camrys burning oil. trying to be number one has cost them dearly...

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:30 | 4642624 One And Only
One And Only's picture

Have you considered a Kia Bongo truck?

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:31 | 4642628 medium giraffe
medium giraffe's picture

Lol KIA jinx. 

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 09:18 | 4642777 fredquimby
fredquimby's picture

Funny, in the UK and Japan it was a Mazda Bongo.

I just converted a Nissan NV200 1.5TDI into a campervan, and I am way, way, way pleased with it :)))



Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:31 | 4642626 medium giraffe
medium giraffe's picture

I think the Korean KIA is heading in the right direction.  Not trying to rip your eyes out, offering very long warranties and build quality is improving significantly.  Good luck to them.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:35 | 4642642 new game
new game's picture

forgot about kia, yea but wow the fucking bling look doesn't do it for me...

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 08:50 | 4642687 Billy Sol Estes
Billy Sol Estes's picture

Hyundai's aren't bad and you get what you pay for.

Quality matches price atleast for them. Can't be said for the US makers.

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 09:22 | 4642794 Van Halen
Van Halen's picture

New Game, it's Tesla to the rescue!

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 10:01 | 4642903 seek
seek's picture

Honda is still pretty good but has slipped a little since '08 as well. Hyundais will surprise you, they've come a long way in the past decade.

Toyota is a victim of growing too fast -- they had a great reputation and people running away from the crap other producers made forced them into an unsupportable expansion that compromised quality.

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