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Don't Call Your GM Car A "Decapitating", "Kevorkianesque", "Rolling Sarcophagus", Or "You're Toast"

Tyler Durden's picture


Instead of "defective", GM suggests its employees use the phrase "does not perform to design" according to just released documents in the GM recall probe. However, the internal presentation provides a glimpse into the internal thinking at GM as it suggests the following 69 words should not be used in a company memo... including "Hindenburg", "spontaneous combustion", and "Kevorkianesque."


Via WSJ,

The full 69 banned 'judgment' words...


always, annihilate, apocalyptic, asphyxiating, bad, Band-Aid, big time, brakes like an “X” car, cataclysmic, catastrophic, Challenger, chaotic, Cobain, condemns, Corvair-like, crippling, critical, dangerous, deathtrap, debilitating, decapitating, defect, defective, detonate, disemboweling, enfeebling, evil, eviscerated, explode, failed, flawed, genocide, ghastly, grenadelike, grisly, gruesome, Hindenburg, Hobbling, Horrific, impaling, inferno, Kevorkianesque, lacerating, life-threatening, maiming, malicious, mangling, maniacal, mutilating, never, potentially-disfiguring, powder keg, problem, rolling sarcophagus (tomb or coffin), safety, safety related, serious, spontaneous combustion, startling, suffocating, suicidal, terrifying, Titanic, unstable, widow-maker, words or phrases with a biblical connotation, you’re toast


and in case you needed a little more help... here are some more translations...


"Trust" them.. they're from the government...


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Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:08 | 4782854 willpoi
willpoi's picture

My GM is Keynesian

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:19 | 4782894 James_Cole
James_Cole's picture

For those who haven't seen, enjoy:

1m44s in.


Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:27 | 4782919 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

69? Who says .gov doesn't have a sense of humor?


Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:35 | 4782947 knukles
knukles's picture

So the phrase "This car hurts like a dripping penis" is OK.
Glad of that....

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:42 | 4782979 CPL
CPL's picture

Clap mobile is usually associated with the legacy GM brands of shaggin' wagon.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 22:28 | 4783576 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

Good news, everyone! The following words are still A-OK:









emulsified passenger



sinister midget with a bucket and a mop

trailer park tornado-like

Thu, 05/22/2014 - 01:38 | 4783916 Fish Gone Bad
Fish Gone Bad's picture

You left off my favorite, CAR-B-QUE .  Mmmmmm car-b-que.

Thu, 05/22/2014 - 03:28 | 4784004 Confused
Confused's picture



As in the way the company has been run. 

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:46 | 4782996 BeetleBailey
BeetleBailey's picture


Wed, 05/21/2014 - 19:20 | 4783096 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

Sir, we have a self-pulverizing rectal-skewer/blender non-DESIGN condition that, eventually, self-disintegrates via long term oxidation and self-cools.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 19:00 | 4783038 XenoFrog
XenoFrog's picture

A little penicillin used to clear that right up.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:31 | 4782929 bbq on whitehou...
bbq on whitehouse lawn's picture

What was your first car? What did you do with it?
Is there an equation: fun vs safety. How much does fun increase with speed?
How much does safety decrease with speed? How about roads vs fields?
Show me a graph. I know at least one of you has one.
cars safer then running or useing a horse, cart.
Im sure the inventive could come up with lots of charts.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:47 | 4782998 CPL
CPL's picture

78 Ford LTD.  Would go like a bat out of hell depending on the hill. The take off speed was awesome, 0 to $20 bucks in under a minute.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 21:56 | 4783500 stormsailor
stormsailor's picture

43 ford wwii jeep. flathead 4 with the deepwater package.  it had a railroad tie welded to the frame for the front bumper.  would only go about 45 but if you yanked it off the road into a field of planted pine. it would just knock them completely down and never even slow down.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:37 | 4782954 stant
stant's picture

It was gov first effort at mandated healthcare, more of that to come. Be better off with a old corvair with a mpv player

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:37 | 4782959 BrosephStiglitz
BrosephStiglitz's picture

At some point in 20-30 years, people will be using the verb "to Bernanke" something.

"Did you hear about the latest production line?"
"You mean the one Bob was working on?"
"Yeah.  They had to recall 40% of last year's product." 
"Damn, .gov really Bernanke'd that one." 

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:55 | 4783023 thecoloredsky
thecoloredsky's picture

It's all good. GM stock up over 1% today. What planet am I on again? 

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 20:38 | 4783284 Bunga Bunga
Bunga Bunga's picture

You are on Central Planning Planet. Everything is always fine, positive and better than expected. If something goes wrong,  than it's because of the weather.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:38 | 4782962 caShOnlY
caShOnlY's picture

Of course the phrase "piece of shit" is OK.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 20:51 | 4783320 Mr. Magoo
Mr. Magoo's picture

Or maybe "like a Pinto"

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:10 | 4782860 hangemhigh77
hangemhigh77's picture

They can use "Fukuppy" though?

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:14 | 4782875 Eternal Complainer
Eternal Complainer's picture

They forgot to include lemon.
Unless its already included in the legacy banned list of automotivly blasphemous words never to be used.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:16 | 4782882 hangemhigh77
hangemhigh77's picture

And "POS" as well. That's applicable.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:37 | 4782955 CPL
CPL's picture

Forsale:  V6 engineered shitbox, cash peddle works well with new flint-stone brake system.  Rolls nicely on tight curves, helmets included.  Clean engine, once.  Fresh paint holding rust together.  300,000 kilometres on odometer, low mileage.  Must be seen to be believed, ask for photos. OBO, 25k firm.


Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:11 | 4782861 BrosephStiglitz
BrosephStiglitz's picture

Hindenburg?  Some of them must frequent ZH.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:37 | 4782957 knukles
knukles's picture

Schrodinger (looking into empty box):  "Where's the fucking cat?"
Heisenberg: "How should I know?" 

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:46 | 4782991 knukles
knukles's picture


Wed, 05/21/2014 - 20:42 | 4783296 Bunga Bunga
Bunga Bunga's picture

On the other hand the word 'Zerohedge' is not banned.

Thu, 05/22/2014 - 12:25 | 4785131 StandardDeviant
StandardDeviant's picture

They ought to know by now that telling people not to use certain terms only inspires them to new heights of creativity.

There was a Telegraph story a few years ago about the employees of Disneyland Paris, who were ordered to stop referring to their place of employment as "Mauschwitz".  Within hours this was duly replaced by "Duckau".

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:11 | 4782864 mrdenis
mrdenis's picture

 "does not perform to design" ....could be describing Obama as well 

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:33 | 4782941 sessinpo
sessinpo's picture

mrdenis       "does not perform to design" ....could be describing Obama as well


Oh contrar, it is by design. Those that don't see that are way late in the game.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:11 | 4782865 QE49er
QE49er's picture

Take the number of vehicles in the field, A, multiply by the probable rate of failure, B, multiply by the average out-of-court settlement, C. A times B times C equals X. If X is less than the cost of a recall, we don't do one.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:35 | 4782946 bbq on whitehou...
bbq on whitehouse lawn's picture

What if you are driving, or your grandma is, driving the car in question.
Does X get a modifier or is it still just X.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 19:53 | 4783178 SmackDaddy
SmackDaddy's picture

fuck yeah.  My X gets a big fucking modifier.  Who else is going to work to pay for this shit?  old people, on the other hand... well, i figure theyve had a pretty good run just to make it to old...

oh, and its from fight club fag

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:11 | 4782866 hangemhigh77
hangemhigh77's picture

GM needs a mascot.  How about a flaming corpse lying on a highway? Corpseboy

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:31 | 4782930 Atomizer
Wed, 05/21/2014 - 21:43 | 4783460 stormsailor
stormsailor's picture

they could have hefty bags instead of air-bags for that messy cleanup.  and automatic cross to pop out on the side of the highway, with flowers is optional.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:11 | 4782867 Eternal Complainer
Eternal Complainer's picture

I guess we're not too far away from another mass book burning and possible implementation of thought police.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:34 | 4782937 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

Exactly.  Downright Orwellian.  Doublespeak in the flesh.

Mix in 2 lbs. of 1984, bake at Fahrenheit 451, cool on metal rack, then carve slices of our new reality.  Doubleplusgood.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:14 | 4782871 hangemhigh77
hangemhigh77's picture

GM trucks, "Like a Crock (of shit)"

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:14 | 4782873 FieldingMellish
FieldingMellish's picture

Everything the government touches it destroys.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 21:02 | 4783355 p00k1e
p00k1e's picture

GM was on the stretcher > government brought the paddles.

The U.S. is drowning in fiscal pollution.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:15 | 4782876 hangemhigh77
hangemhigh77's picture

GM' GEO - "Gee, OoHHHHHH, IT'S ON FIRE!!!!!"

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:17 | 4782885 hangemhigh77
hangemhigh77's picture

I wonder why they stopped at 69.  Hmmmmm, maybe the guys secretary was on his desk at the time.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:18 | 4782887 Miss Expectations
Miss Expectations's picture

John Oliver

In light of General Motors' recall of 11 million vehicles and recently-leaked public relations memo, Last Week Tonight with John Oliver made a new, honest ad for their cars.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:18 | 4782891 Anasteus
Anasteus's picture

Slavery underway.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:19 | 4782892 Global Hunter
Global Hunter's picture

There are some words in that list I didn't even know were used but they are very funny and I will now. "Disembowling", "grenadelike", "potentially-disfiguring" and from the headline "Kevorkianesque" and "rolling-sarcophagus".  Thanks GM that is some funny shit.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 23:01 | 4783590 Frozen
Frozen's picture


Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:20 | 4782897 Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Control the language and you control the mind. The body soon follows.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:20 | 4782901 Rainman
Rainman's picture

Peak anal retentive thinking on display...but necessary when you believe your employees are all idiots.  

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:23 | 4782907 rosiescenario
rosiescenario's picture

"Kevorkianesque.".........someone is fairly clever in GM's legal department....I can only imagine the emails going around as they built up this list of words not to use..."disemboweling"...."potentially disfiguring"...."grenade like".

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:50 | 4783007 Blano
Blano's picture

It's Detroit, where Jack's name is still and always will be well known.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:25 | 4782909 socalbeach
socalbeach's picture

Instead of defective, how about "undocumented feature" ?

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:51 | 4783008 Blano
Blano's picture

That would be "illegal."

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:24 | 4782912 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

I don't know what to think. Will somebody please tell me?

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:34 | 4782945 Big Corked Boots
Big Corked Boots's picture

Report directly to your MSM thought outlet, citizen. They will tell you.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 22:49 | 4783651 knukles
knukles's picture

Just soooooooo fucking true.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:27 | 4782920 Ghostdog
Ghostdog's picture

 Its fun to know I can call GM all those things and not be labeled a racist or misogynist... Or can I?

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:27 | 4782921 Atomizer
Atomizer's picture

GM Reinvention Commercial



Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:27 | 4782922 Schmuck Raker
Schmuck Raker's picture

"GM Confidential"

In movie theatres Friday, June 13th.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:29 | 4782925 Duc888
Duc888's picture



I gave it a quick scan.....didn't see SHITBOX in the list.  Last decent auto's (cars or trucks) GM built were around 1972.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:33 | 4782938 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

The Hummer line was pretty descent, so they had to get rid of it.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:42 | 4782976 BeetleBailey
BeetleBailey's picture

OR douchebucket, union made piece of excrement, UAWshite, Body by Barry, Oozemaster, VistaTruckster La Ca Ca...


Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:31 | 4782928 Roger Shermanator
Roger Shermanator's picture

Getting in a GM vehicle = "Going 'wheels to Jesus'"

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:32 | 4782935 Big Corked Boots
Big Corked Boots's picture

"brakes like an X car"

they had to dig deep for that one

I used to make money on those. Back in college I'd offer $75-100 for them, and drag them (with my f250) directly to the junkyard and get $150. Tuesday morning phone calls usually worked best.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:42 | 4782975 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

Ah yes...including the Nova (No-va or "doesn't go" in Spanish) and the "Citation" because you deserved one for buying it.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 19:26 | 4783109 ParkAveFlasher
ParkAveFlasher's picture

I had a Citation.  Tough car, never quit.  No really the engine wouldn't shut off even after you killed the ignition and walked away - it would knock back on five minutes after you parked it.  Actually a handy feature for robbing dairy marts and so forth.  

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 20:14 | 4783230 Emergency Ward
Emergency Ward's picture

I wasn't going to mention the ever-classic Cadillac Cimarron, but I will......

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:33 | 4782939 semperfi
semperfi's picture

how about these 7 words?...

shit piss fuck cunt cocksucker motherfucker and tits

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:43 | 4782980 semperfi
semperfi's picture

down arrow?  c'mon - that's classic George Carlin

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 20:12 | 4783224 Emergency Ward
Emergency Ward's picture

You upset someone's sensitive nature.....

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 19:22 | 4783103 kchrisc
kchrisc's picture

Ah, George Carlin. I learned many things from you, but "cunt" is one of my favorites. Pelosi, Reno, Feinstein, Nuland, Condoleezza, Hilliary...

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:36 | 4782948 Z_End
Z_End's picture



Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:38 | 4782961 tuttisaluti
tuttisaluti's picture

I still like my corvette

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:57 | 4783027 bbq on whitehou...
bbq on whitehouse lawn's picture

Comaros are bigger with stronger doors and frame. Same engine more
steel and structure. You pay 40k for 2 more engine bolts and 2 less seats.
But im sure its worth that for you.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 19:46 | 4783162 The_Ungrateful_Yid
The_Ungrateful_Yid's picture

Camaros are heavy trash plus you cant see out of the fucking thing.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:38 | 4782963 flyingcaveman
flyingcaveman's picture

Well as long as my truck doesn't start gaping, that'll be good. 

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:41 | 4782974 Atomizer
Atomizer's picture

Bring back the Fiero.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 20:32 | 4783270 Blood Spattered...
Blood Spattered Banner's picture

I drove a GT as a teen for a couple years. Never phased me that the engine was DIRECTLY BEHIND ME!

That design was the same as a gun that points backwards. 

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 18:45 | 4782988 bbq on whitehou...
bbq on whitehouse lawn's picture

GM should use the word "interesting" in all its findings.
Mother and child burned, turned inside out and exploded.
"Interesting" .
To graphic a word: how about: " Pending"
No to legal.
How about. "copy" of, for, also to: all copy.
The "copy" shoulda woulda or coulda been but wasn't
No then contact me i charge 2million an hour should i charge you
for the first hour now or would you like to be charged for 20 later.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 19:25 | 4783088 AdvancingTime
AdvancingTime's picture

For the record, I despise Government Motors! I never intend to buy one of their vehicles ever again. GM could be the poster child of crony capitalism and corruption.

I contend that the massive growth in crony capitalism and corruption has a lot to do with growing inequality. Much of this can be attributed to the ability of those in control "changing the rules" and positioning themselves to benefit at every corner. In our busy and complex world we have found it impossible to watch all the moving parts. More on this subject in the article below.


Wed, 05/21/2014 - 19:17 | 4783093 g'kar
g'kar's picture

Bring back the Vega!

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 20:06 | 4783211 Emergency Ward
Emergency Ward's picture

yay yay....and the No Va....

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 19:32 | 4783124 Whalley World
Whalley World's picture

As a proven decapitator, give one to all bankers on Wall Street, that would fix a problem or two.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 19:42 | 4783152 Sokhmate
Sokhmate's picture

I designed a woman, but of the 3 billion plus on earth, I cannot find one that performs to my design.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 19:45 | 4783160 fxrxexexdxoxmx
fxrxexexdxoxmx's picture

Aww shoot  my car is Barracked again. What a piece of Obama!

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 20:19 | 4783240 Blood Spattered...
Blood Spattered Banner's picture

"Excuse me GM?  My grenade-like car resulted in the disembowlment of a native Papua New Guinea tribe, which amounts to genocide.  Can I get a free oil change?"



Wed, 05/21/2014 - 20:28 | 4783261 Last of the Mid...
Last of the Middle Class's picture

donor mobile? suicide ride? partial birth abortion? plastic penis? E ticket to eternity, exit machine, chevrolet casion, reject ride, and my all time favorite. . terminator truck!

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 20:29 | 4783265 Offthebeach
Offthebeach's picture

Once the Yugo's left the market, GM got sloppy.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 20:42 | 4783297 JohnDoe
JohnDoe's picture

 Gorge Carlin would work this list forever.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 20:42 | 4783299 JohnDoe
JohnDoe's picture

 Gorge Carlin would work this list forever.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 21:52 | 4783488 stormsailor
stormsailor's picture

yeah, well,  we need george carlin now more than we have ever needed anyone.   and john wayne too.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 22:03 | 4783515 stormsailor
stormsailor's picture

maybe ally financial should put a life insurance policy payable to them in their finance agreement.  been selling a lot of death and dismemberment riders on auto policies lately.  sometimes the client ask if they really need it, if its a late model gm i tell them "definitely" in fact we should change that to family plan ii.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 22:18 | 4783555 Cheduba
Cheduba's picture

Flame grew to 100

I can just see the engineers at GM with a measuring tape up close trying to gauge exactly how flammable their cars are.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 22:43 | 4783632 dexter_morgan
dexter_morgan's picture

words or phrases with biblical connotations

LOL, can I use Koranic connotations? "That sucker will behead you as if you were an infidel"

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 22:44 | 4783638 robnume
robnume's picture

George Carlin would've loved this one!! I can just hear him now. The seven words you can't say about GM!

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 22:45 | 4783640 Caveman93
Caveman93's picture

General Motors has already recalled more cars and trucks in the U.S. this year than it has sold here in the five years since it filed for bankruptcy.

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 22:46 | 4783644 dexter_morgan
dexter_morgan's picture

Gubmit Motors - working for you

Wed, 05/21/2014 - 23:12 | 4783695 dexter_morgan
dexter_morgan's picture

Maybe they could dump their crappy cars in Romania - call them Vlad Dracule mobiles. Impaling is a no cost option.

Thu, 05/22/2014 - 01:21 | 4783897 VWAndy
VWAndy's picture

Dont say fire, instead say there was a thermal event.

Thu, 05/22/2014 - 05:13 | 4784036 Peterus
Peterus's picture

Self extinguished thermal event over 30 minuter period. (car burned down to the ground)

Thu, 05/22/2014 - 02:24 | 4783958 Jano
Jano's picture

I wonder by which miracle they did not close yet.
Did they get some inspiration, reading Harry Potter?

Thu, 05/22/2014 - 07:08 | 4784113 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture

Soon her head fell on a suicidal glass tank that was lying under the rolling sarcophagus: she opened it and found it a very corvair-like deathtrap, on which the words "Decapitating Me" were beautifully marked in Government Motors. "Well, I'll eat it," said Alice, "and if it makes me grow larger, I can eviscerate the Hindenberg; and if it makes me grow smaller, I can impale under the Challenger; so either way I'll get onto the highway, and I don't care which happens!"

She ate a little bit, and said evil to herself, "Which Titanic? Which Titanic?," holding her leg on the top of her torso to feel which way it was rolling, and she was quite disgusted to find that she remained the same size: to be sure, this generally happens when one eats cake, but Alice had got so much into the way of expecting nothing but out-of-the-way things to happen, that it seemed quite dull and mangling for life to go on in the Kevorkianesque way.

So she set to work, and very soon finished off the widowmaker.

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