GM gets a reality check

More

Joe Weisenthal at Clusterstock suggests that GM's projections for future sales are finally going to come down to earth.  I certainly hope so.  For the past few months, listening to GM talk has always reminded me of a story near and dear to the hearts of many girls--the death of Ruby Gillis in the third book of the Anne of Green Gables series:

Anne was sitting with Ruby Gillis in the Gillis' garden after the day had crept lingeringly through it and was gone. It had been a warm, smoky summer afternoon. The world was in a splendor of out-flowering. The idle valleys were full of hazes. The woodways were pranked with shadows and the fields with the purple of the asters.

Anne had given up a moonlight drive to the White Sands beach that she might spend the evening with Ruby. She had so spent many evenings that summer, although she often wondered what good it did any one, and sometimes went home deciding that she could not go again.

Ruby grew paler as the summer waned; the White Sands school was given up -- "her father thought it better that she shouldn't teach till New Year's" -- and the fancy work she loved oftener and oftener fell from hands grown too weary for it. But she was always gay, always hopeful, always chattering and whispering of her beaux, and their rivalries and despairs. It was this that made Anne's visits hard for her. What had once been silly or amusing was gruesome, now; it was death peering through a wilful mask of life. Yet Ruby seemed to cling to her, and never let her go until she had promised to come again soon. Mrs. Lynde grumbled about Anne's frequent visits, and declared she would catch consumption; even Marilla was dubious.

"Every time you go to see Ruby you come home looking tired out," she said.

"It's so very sad and dreadful," said Anne in a low tone. "Ruby doesn't seem to realize her condition in the least. And yet I somehow feel she needs help -- craves it -- and I want to give it to her and can't. All the time I'm with her I feel as if I were watching her struggle with an invisible foe -- trying to push it back with such feeble resistance as she has. That is why I come home tired."

It would be nice to take a break from the escalating unreality:  "We project that aliens will descend from the planet XXorkzz and selectively vaporize the Japanese automakers, the airlines, the busses, and the subways, leaving us with some very attractive market opportunities".  But what does that leave us with?  The sure and certain knowledge that without considerable further government assistance, the company will topple.



Anne was sitting with Ruby Gillis in the Gillis' garden after the day had crept lingeringly through it and was gone. It had been a warm, smoky summer afternoon. The world was in a splendor of out-flowering. The idle valleys were full of hazes. The woodways were pranked with shadows and the fields with the purple of the asters.

Anne had given up a moonlight drive to the White Sands beach that she might spend the evening with Ruby. She had so spent many evenings that summer, although she often wondered what good it did any one, and sometimes went home deciding that she could not go again.

Ruby grew paler as the summer waned; the White Sands school was given up -- "her father thought it better that she shouldn't teach till New Year's" -- and the fancy work she loved oftener and oftener fell from hands grown too weary for it. But she was always gay, always hopeful, always chattering and whispering of her beaux, and their rivalries and despairs. It was this that made Anne's visits hard for her. What had once been silly or amusing was gruesome, now; it was death peering through a wilful mask of life. Yet Ruby seemed to cling to her, and never let her go until she had promised to come again soon. Mrs. Lynde grumbled about Anne's frequent visits, and declared she would catch consumption; even Marilla was dubious.

"Every time you go to see Ruby you come home looking tired out," she said.

"It's so very sad and dreadful," said Anne in a low tone. "Ruby doesn't seem to realize her condition in the least. And yet I somehow feel she needs help -- craves it -- and I want to give it to her and can't. All the time I'm with her I feel as if I were watching her struggle with an invisible foe -- trying to push it back with such feeble resistance as she has. That is why I come home tired."

It would be nice to take a break from the escalating unreality:  "We project that aliens will descend from the planet XXorkzz and selectively vaporize the Japanese automakers, the airlines, the busses, and the subways, leaving us with some very attractive market opportunities".  But what does that leave us with?  The sure and certain knowledge that without considerable further government assistance, the company will topple.

Jump to comments
Presented by

Megan McArdle is a columnist at Bloomberg View and a former senior editor at The Atlantic. Her new book is The Up Side of Down.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

'Stop Telling Women to Smile'

An artist's campaign to end sexual harassment on the streets of NYC.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Where Time Comes From

The clocks that coordinate your cellphone, GPS, and more

Video

Computer Vision Syndrome and You

Save your eyes. Take breaks.

Video

What Happens in 60 Seconds

Quantifying human activity around the world

Writers

Up
Down

More in Business

Just In