Sustainable Alternative for the Ford "Motor" Company

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Thursday, December 22, 2005
By John A. Ardelli


Recently, I saw an article on Global Exchange that listed The Ford Motor Company as the 6th worst Human Rights violator among the top 14 Human Rights Violators of 2005. That prompted me to write the following letter to company presendent William Ford Jr. I thought some of you might find it interesting:

Dear Mr. Ford:

As you may already be aware, The Ford Motor Company has been listed #6 on Global Exchange's "14 'Most Wanted' Corporate Human Rights Violators of 2005:"

http://www.globalexchange.org/getInvolved/corporateHRviolators.html

Obviously, most of The Ford Motor Company's problems stem from the current world shortage of oil. The human rights violations in question are evidently considered necessary evils required in order to supply the copious amounts of oil your corporation needs to manufacture and power its product.

Personally, I have no qualms about the pursuit of profit in and of itself. However, I draw the line when the pursuit of profit begins hurting others. Unfortunately, as automobiles are, by far, the greatest consumer of oil of any product in the world, the current shortage of oil has forced large auto manufacturers like yourself to "overlook" some human rights violations among those who control the oil in order to continue fueling their product.

Ultimately, oil is not a renewable resource. Human rights violations aside, it is inevitable, Mr. Ford, that your company must either adapt or fall. Just like the IBM company which would have folded back in the 1950s had the company not branched out from punched card tabulating equipment into the computer age, so too will the Ford Motor Company fall when the oil finally runs out.

I, for one, do not want to see that happen. It probably surprises you that I'd say that. I'm sure, considering everything I've said thus far, you were expecting me to condemn the Ford Motor Company for their practices and hope for your eventual demise. This is not the case. Put simply, I don't like to see the fall of ANY long standing company, particularly one with such a long standing history. I prefer to see companies survive and prosper, adapting as the market changes.

The Ford Motor Company need not continue its current practices in order to survive and be profitable. I'm sure you, or those under you who have made these decisions, have seen what your corporation has done in environmental damage and fueling oil wars as necessary evils of doing business. I'm sure that, if there was an alternative way for Ford to make a profit without hurting people, you'd be more than willing to consider the alternative.

There IS an alternative, Mr. Ford. A PROVEN alternative. Please refer to the following website:

http://www.cadillacbicycles.com

Cadillac is probably the best known luxury car manufacturer in the world. As a result, they also have a reputation (deserved or not) for the worst fuel economy of any car in the world simply by virtue of the fact that when one thinks "Cadillac," one thinks BIG. Big cars aren't fuel efficient. So Cadillac, recognizing that the shortage of oil might one day drastically reduce or even eliminate the market they cater to, they decided to try an alternative: bicycle manufacture.

Right now, because of high gas prices, bicycling is seeing a resurgence throughout the world, particularly in North America. I'm a cyclist myself, and I've seen more fellow cyclists on the road this year than in ANY previous year. There are even a few I've seen that are continuing to ride their bicycles as transportation throughout the WINTER months, showcasing the bicycle's viability as a transportation alternative year-round.

I believe, with a proper ad and education campaign, Ford Motor Company could develop a line of good quality bicycles and successfully and profitably sell them to the public just as Cadillac has done. Not only would a line of bicycles be a potentially profitable product line for Ford, but they would also provide a fallback for Ford should the oil crisis eventually cripple the automobile market.

If the product line is successful, it will also allow Ford to take pressure off the oil industry without sacrificing profits.

In my opinion, this is an idea well worth your consideration.

Good luck.

John A. Ardelli
Moderator
BIFIDA-L: http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/bifida-l/
The Crystal Corner: http://movies.groups.yahoo.com/group/CrystalCorner/
Bicycling Advocacy: http://sports.groups.yahoo.com/group/bicyclingadvocacy/


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Comments:
This letter you wrote is admirable. I thought you might be interested in a petition for human rights education. You wouldn't have to write letters like this one if everyone knew their human rights.

Violations of human rights are a common problem and give increase to ethnic, racial and religious conflicts;
In 1984, because of the devastation created by World War II, the United Nations (U.N.) adopted the *Universal Declaration of Human Rights;
The Declaration represents a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations, and is *endorsed by 191 *U.N. member states
Even with its truly universal character, it is little known by most citizens, and no nation actively promotes and sees to its full application

The above is true, go to the site below and sign the Human Rights Education petition.

http://new.petitiononline.com/yhri2005/petition.html

(copy and paste ^this^ into the address bar to go to the site.)

It would be great to send this out to as many people as possible. As it covers everything you just said.

* Universal; relating to, affecting, or accepted by the whole world.
* Endorse; to make a public statement of your approval or support for something.
*U.N. Member State; Country, state, etc. that is part of the United Nations.
 
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