Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Somebody Call Ralph Nadar

I saw this Chevy Corvair parked on the side of the road. I was shocked, I had never seen one before. This was the car that made Ralph Nadar famous in the 60's when he exposed the safety issues in his muckraking book "Unsafe at any Speed." (It's a rear engine design with a myriad of problems.) I carry my camera around and decided to snap a shot. As I was doing so, a younger guy was walking by and was amused that I was interested in the Corvair. It turns out his boyfriend (not that there's anything wrong with that) owns the car and thinks it's perfectly safe and reliable. Sorry about the lousy picture but I was trying to get the "Corvair" insignia into the shot.

UPDATE: The Corvair fiasco was also highlighted in John DeLorean's 1979 book, On a Clear Day, you Can See General Motors. DeLorean chronicled the high level incompetance within GM management. This book came as a shock for people like my father who grew up with the belief that GM was everything that's great and good about American business. The Corvair was one of the first symptoms of GM's long decline.

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