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Old 09-19-2012, 06:03 PM   #1

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My apologies and "...THE THREAD....."

All – I want to take some time to put a few thoughts down – as some of you know, we had a thread in this section last week – along the lines of “Chevrolet needs to put more power in the ZL1” ….and it turned very toxic – to the point where it disappeared.

I don’t run this site – and I don’t tell the people who own the site -- or who moderate the site ---what to do on this site. I did ask for the thread to be put back up – but that has not happened. I will not criticize the moderators or their decision, because let’s face it – they have to put up with all of us – and they don’t get paid to do so! I think they do a very good job of keeping Camaro5 ‘clean’ – and a nice place to hang out. Their job is a thankless one…….

However – I do believe I need to apologize if I upset some people – so I’d posted what you’re about to read – JUST before the thread disappeared.

This is NOT a ‘must read’ and I DO NOT want to get people riled up.

What I DO want to do is to set a perspective, if you will………..

Sooooooo……without further ado:

(Dateline – Sunday morning, September 16. Location: LaGuardia Airport)

All –

Some random thoughts to all of the stuff in what I see as a very toxic thread………..
I think “ZL1Bro” put it very succinctly when he posted in this thread:

"..........I think fbodfather said it best when he implied that we as human beings are at our best when we act in friendly, helpful ways toward each other to solve problems. And I would argue we are at our worst as human beings when we judge others whose shoes we haven't ourselves walked in...........".

I’m going to share some frustrations – and if you don’t want to read this, that’s fine – but hopefully it will put perspective on my thoughts. Many will not agree – and again, we’re all guilty of trying to take a huge amount of ‘stuff and ‘distill’ it to explain what’s wrong with this country.

I sit and watch with amazement as the fabric of our society is ripped to shreds due to an ‘anything goes’ attitude. At some point, we reached a tipping point where people decided it was “OK” to curse in loud voices – not only on the internet, but in public. (and I’m guilty….)

I’m in a Delta sky Club and not 15 minutes ago I heard a young ‘woman’ say to her daughter -- “Missy – if you don’t stop that s##t I’m gonna beat the F##K out of you. (the child is in the vicinity of 5 years old…..)

At some point we decided at a society that we’ll glorify a few miscreants at the Jersey Shore by giving them a TV series where we reinforce that it’s “OK” to act like a moron.

At some point we decided that it’s entertainment to watch people slug it out with each other over outrageous behavior (and dress) on shows like Jerry Springer.

At some point, we decided that it’s “OK” to do what’s in our best interests individually rather than to look at the larger picture and decide that our actions DO affect our country at large. We won two world wars because people were (or became) selfless and people pulled together. They didn’t play “what’s in it for me?”

Now: This is one part of this post that will infuriate many……but I guess I just have to say “so be it……..”

I just flew several trips to the coasts……and I’m listening to people in hotels and restaurants and offices and waiting rooms complaining about how terrible the economy is…….and how they see things getting worse…..all the time while driving foreign cars – and buying everything at WalMart (where it’s nigh impossible to find anything built in the U.S. or Canada) and slamming people because their political views don’t quite match up with their own……and I watch parents let their children run wild and throw tantrums that last long enough that peoples’ ears bleed ….and I watch people shouting into their cellphones with complete disregard for those around them ……and I witness people running thru stop signs because they’re either in a hurry or they just don’t care………..and I could go on – but I think you get the idea:

Bad behavior. A lack of Decorum.

And I could go on and on and we all know it because we all witness it.

And then this weekend I’m walking thru a shopping mall wearing a polo shirt with a GM logo affixed to it – and I’m simply blown away that 4 different individuals on four different occasions felt it was OK to come up to me and berate me because I had a GM logo on my shirt.

One actually cursed me out and told me I was a “F##King Moron and that everyone at GM should be fired.”

(how did he even know I worked for GM? ….)

Now – I’m not perfect – not by a long shot.

I go to sleep at night praying that I haven’t offended people–

…..and that the Good Lord will give me” the patience of Job”…
..and that I’ll continue to be able to serve and to work the hours I do and to do good things for people and make a positive impact on humanity……

(oh yes – and to give perspective on this website and others like it….)

….And every day I continue to fail…..

I guess that’s the human condition.

And then I get back to my hotel room very late after spending 17 hours with the public trying to change perceptions of the company for which I work…and I log onto a website created (at least I thought it was…) to celebrate the ownership of these great (but not perfect) automobiles.

And what do I find? A thread that has completely spun out of control……with people making accusations and prophesizing and theorizing and making declarations of fact.

I’m NOT singling anyone out here – as the old saying goes: ‘If the shoe fits….’

And then something really hit home to me: Someone – and I can’t even remember the exact words -- started the Carroll Shelby versus Fbodfather post…

……and believe I took it a bit too personally....especially after thinking about everything I’ve mentioned above.

(Fbodfather needs to understand that he needs more rest these days than he did 10 years ago……he gets cranky…..)

Let me make something as clear as I can ever make something: I do not see myself any different than the rest of you on this site.

(although there are a few of us – me included -- that could use some ‘brushing up” on manners…..)

For those of you who have met me and sat to talk --- or heard one of my talks at various events, you likely have heard me say; “hey – I’m just like the rest of you – I love this car – and I was fortunate enough to be able to work on it…how blessed I am” (or words along those lines)

What I will also say is that I’ve had an opportunity over the past 35 years to watch GM (and Ford and Chrysler) …to win…… and to lose.

I’ve watched people come into the company and do untold damage. (Mr. Zarella comes to mind …..)

I’ve watched great men make huge changes for the better. In my opinion, Mr. Lutz is a genius. Does that mean that I bought into everything he said? No.

Did we disagree? Boy Howdy. But I put him in the top 5 people of all time in the Auto Industry. And I wish I had 1/100th of the talent that this man has……

Mr. Jim Perkins is another that made a huge impact at Chevrolet – unfortunately he left way too soon – just as Mr. Zarella came to GM.

I’ve seen people like Alan Mulally come to Ford – and I think he’s a genius as well – and I’ve seen him turn the organization upside down to get people to talk to each other and to work as one team and to respect one another.

That doesn’t seem, at face value, to be hard to do (the getting people to talk to each other – but it’s nigh impossible….

What he’s accomplished is simply amazing.

(Confidential to Alan: Please come to work for GM!)

I’ve also watched in horror as people no longer fight for what’s best in America….too many have become self-centered – too many have adopted a “what’s in it for me?” attitude….and I guess that’s what’s really got me confounded and wondering if I should not just sell my home and my possessions and escape to some island somewhere…….

And I’ve watched our national leaders act like a bunch of 4th graders on a school playground. I’m not happy with either choice this fall – but I can also tell you that I get infuriated when I hear our commander in chief talk about promising to pull America together – and then in the next breath turn people against each other. That’s not helping anyone…..and it further causes people to feel ‘victimized.’ And Mr. Romney is just as bad at times.

Now – the bottom lines about this thread as I see it?

I’d love to see us put 900 horsepower in a new Camaro…

….and I’d love to do everything that people ask us to do.

(even though in some cases, I need to say “be careful what you ask for” )

However, I have the privilege (and the curse) to see things that many on the outside are not able to. Things such as development costs – things such as Federal Legislation that’s going to impact us (that’s you and me) in ways we’ve never even imagined.

I’d love to say that GM and Chrysler failed for a couple of reasons – but the reality is that it isn’t quite that simple. Most things in life are rarely simple. There are hundreds - if not thousands – of reasons why things have turned out as they have. And many of those reasons were things way beyond anyone’s’ control at GM or Chrysler or Ford. One simply cannot ‘distill’ reasons down to one or two posts. And when I try to do that – or you try to do that – we do an injustice to everyone involved.

Making matters worse: The internet has lots of information out there – much of it either misleading or downright false.

I have strong personal thoughts about wall street -- CEO Pay – computers – foreign policy – and the Kardashians (…speaking of foolishness…)

But I learned some time ago that the older I get – the more I realize what I DON’T know and in what areas I’m not a Subject matter Expert.

Therefore – I‘ve tried to remember what I learned from my Grandmother: “If you can’t say something nice – then be quiet!” If I don’t know the computer business – then I have no business posing as an expert and telling everyone what’s wrong with computers if I really don’t know what I’m talking about. (..and in the case of computers, I don’t!)

It’s OK (in my opinion) to say “I really don’t like Lotus Notes because……..” – And then hopefully someone can educate me as to the reasons why Lotus Notes has certain characteristics. It does not give me the right to say “Lotus Notes Sucks!” Not in a civilized society at least.

Someone just sent me a PM – asking if my remarks earlier in this thread were aimed at him. Further, he told me that he’s really considering NOT buying a GM car because of my comments.

My comments are not usually aimed at one person. I try to avoid that unless someone’s wayyyyy out of line and has been called out by others. (and no, I’m not perfect)

I’m sorry he feels that way. I did not agree with his assessments and I also know that I can post ‘til the cows come home’ and it’s probably not going to make one iota of a difference to some……

So – perhaps it’s time for me to take a vacation – both in terms of work – and more importantly – from the internet. And yet when I do, I get notes from people saying
“hey – don’t go away – we want to get your perspective as an insider”

I’ve already got 6 stents in the ‘ole ticker – and as a dear friend (who is on this site) said to me: “….your blood pressure and health are more important than trying to educate a few idiots (her words to me, not mine) that like to see their opinions posted on the internet……please do not read that thread anymore….you don’t need more stents!”

So – to most of you out there –
…..if I’ve offended you, my apologies. I would rather break my arms than to offend the Camaro enthusiast community at large. On the other hand, there’s always one or two that cause me to type furiously – and then wear out my ‘delete’ key….

I’ve tried (as another friend put in a PM to me ) to Educate by bringing my insight as a car guy within a company to you ……but I also have found that while you can put the dog food in front of the dog, you can’t necessarily make the dog eat the dog food!

To a few of you who seem to revel in coming onto this site to cause controversy -- well – may the moderators act accordingly…..

“The name ‘Camaro’ means ‘friend, pal, or comrade’……”

Let’s not forget that. I believe we can have great discussion on this board. I believe we become better and stronger when we have people from other brands on the site because we learn from their perspective. That said – we need to remain friendly.

So please - let's remember that we're all "Camaro Comrades" on this site....

Now – I’m at LGA airport – I’m going to get on a jet – fly back to Detroit – get behind the wheel of my ZL1 Convertible – and go for a long drive up along the lakes and streams of Michigan. And I’m gonna have a big smile (Ultra-Grin) on my face because I’m behind the wheel of a most amazing machine… that ‘Team Camaro’ has toiled to bring to you – an automobile that makes us so very proud……….

Have a great Sunday, everyone.
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:13 PM   #2
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Thank you sir.
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:17 PM   #3

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I'm sure you are a really nice guy "Fbod father", but seriously, don't get that moved by what folks post on the internet. You should embrace what they say and have a laugh and a half about it. Another thing, what is the word on the 6th Generation Camaro ???
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:21 PM   #4
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I cannot express how much joy my Camaro gives me and my son. Thank you (sorry that is off topic).
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:34 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by fbodfather View Post

So please - let's remember that we're all "Camaro Comrades" on this site....
^^^ This is something we cherish around here and what sets this site appart.

Gentlemen like yourself, Number 3 and Super60 among others, are held in high regard around here and some just don't understand or are jealous of that relationship.

Thanks for just being you and spending your spare time helping keep our rumors straight. We're going to need you during the Z28 season...
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:36 PM   #6
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I agree with you 100% Mike!!!! we are all Camaro Comrades
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:43 PM   #7

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Ford motor credit took money as did toyotas financial arm. What is it with people being so down on GM? Chrysler took money in the early '80s and again 4 years ago. I'm glad chrysler is still in the game. But why do people give GM so much crap all the time? What purpose does it serve?
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:45 PM   #8
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Well said Father. Enjoy that lake cruise. I look forward to turning my key everyday.
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:49 PM   #9
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Scott, you know me. You know how I feel about certain things. You know how , many times, I feel out of place in this world, for some of the same reasons you mentioned. Sometimes, you have to tell it the way it is, and if someone doesn't want to hear it, well, they can just tune in to another station. You owe apologies to no one. Take that long drive, crank up your favorite tunes, and take care of yourself. Life is too short. In fact, I think I'll join you...Eddie is itching to stretch out a bit.
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Old 09-19-2012, 06:56 PM   #10

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Well I didn't read that thread about the ZL-1 so I have no clue about all that..

but with regards what you have stated here. I couldn't agree more.. A lot of the "problems" with society that you list are a direct result of parenting, or lack there of, and as each generation gets less and less of real parenting, it gets worse and worse.

I'm not that old, 43 but my father was in his early 50s when I was born, I was raised in a completely different mindset than my peers. My father was a solider in WWII and Korea, his bother in Korea and Vietnam. I was raised in the manner that you were, with the core values and beliefs that you have.

Most people my age, and IMO it is my generation born in the 60s that started this downward spiral in our society, were raised in a 2 working parent home, with the invent of tv, tv dinners, and separation of religion and family closeness, thus the beginning of the end IMO, I was lucky, everyone sat down for dinner together every night in my house, everyone went to church together on Sunday, both parents involved themselves in my school work, sports, musical instruments, etc. My parents were there for me 24/7 and my mom still is. I don't see that today.. And try hard as I might my work schedule makes me just as bad, a lot of times not getting home in time for dinner with the family..


On side note, heart stints are nothing to joke about, my father had them and it was his ultimate demise, take care of your ticker.. Everything else is meaningless. There is nothing in the world worth getting stressed enough over to cause heart failure.

Even my rant in the other thread, was merely me blowing off some steam about something. It doesn't change anything, most importantly it doesn't change my love for this car, or GM..
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Old 09-19-2012, 07:29 PM   #11

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Well said Fbodfather...I don't know of the thread you're talking about, but I agree with everything you said in this one. My Camaro puts a smile on my face every time I drive it. I've never been able to say that about a car before!!

Take what the ignorant say and post with a grain of salt...take care of yourself. You're obviously very passionate about your work, and I thank you genuinely for that. Is the Camaro perfect, no, but neither is any other car out there. Is it the fastest, most exhilarating car this Yankee has ever driven?? HELL YES!!!

Keep up your great work at GM, take care of you first, and never mind the ignorant, they're all around us...
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Old 09-19-2012, 07:33 PM   #12
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Scott, ur a class act do not let a few 'keyboard tough guys' frustrate you. You can never make us all happy.

On a side note, thinking back to another heated topic, the old traction control button. I had a funny video to share with you at camaro fest, guess ill have to save it until next year. Something about my 5 year old driving the camaro and hitting the "go fast button" while he was driving it...
I'm not the one with the Atti2de problem it's everyone else that has a problem with my Atti2de!
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Old 09-19-2012, 07:35 PM   #13

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dang, must've been asleep during that thread. Quick, someone repost...
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Old 09-19-2012, 07:38 PM   #14

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I didn't read the parts that got out of hand. I try very hard to stay away from those types of threads anymore. I do however sometimes type things that I regret later. I think this is a great community, and I really can't see how anyone could be upset with you Fbodfather. You have done so much for this site(and I'm sure others) over the years, and I have enjoyed reading your post including this one. I know all about heart problems and what stress can cause. I just went through some very hard times with losing loved ones very close together and health issues with my wife that I really don't sweat the small things anymore. I would recommend that you try to do the same and know that you have many people in this world(most that have never met you) that respect you greatly.

hope to see you stay on board.
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