Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2011/06/02

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Subject: [Leica] Abandoned Harvester factory
From: chris at (Chris Crawford)
Date: Thu, 02 Jun 2011 23:16:10 -0400

I remember it from my childhood. My generation never got to experience it
firsthand though. My father tells me that when he was 18 years old, right
after he graduated from high school, he was hired by the telephone company
as a lineman. He didn't go to college or a technical school and had no
telecom experience. He was right out of high school and had worked as a
stockboy at a local grocery store. He was paid a wage equal to about $40,000
a year in todays money and was able to buy a house and a new car. I don't
know anyone I went to school with who makes more than $9 an hour, and most
of my friends have bachelors degrees and we're around 35, not 18!

Chris Crawford
Fine Art Photography
Fort Wayne, Indiana
260-486-2581  My portfolio  My latest work!
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On 6/2/11 6:53 AM, "Ric Carter" <ricc at> wrote:

> jay--
> do i remember a time when the world did not revolve around the stock market
> and big bankers?
> or was i just too young to see it?
> ric
> On Jun 2, 2011, at 4:27 AM, Jayanand Govindaraj wrote:
>> I remember doing International Harvester's demise as a case study - what
>> killed the company was bad financial management, nothing to do with the
>> products. It is a real cautionary tale, but the world forgets these 
>> lessons
>> very fast. It was caused by a CEO, Archie McCardell, piling on debt in 
>> good
>> times to boost earnings per share (EPS) by diversifying into unrelated
>> areas, all for increasing the share price to maximize his bonus - 
>> encouraged
>> by every Investment Bank in sight. The contrast was provided by John 
>> Deere,
>> who raised equity in the good times, therefore protecting themselves 
>> against
>> a market downturn in the future, in exchange for reduced EPS and
>> consequently lower share price in the short term. I need not tell you 
>> which
>> company was the darling of Wall Street at that time! Well, we know now 
>> which
>> decision was correct, don't we? As is always the case in this sort of
>> bungling - if the diversification drive had taken place with equity the
>> company would probably have survived, though McCardell's bonus would not
>> have - the workers are the ones who suffer, seldom the senior management.
>> Remember this is a tale of the late 1970s and not 2008!
>> Exactly the same problem caused the recent recession, only it was 
>> individual
>> balance sheets that had sky high leverage, and not corporations - except 
>> the
>> banks, of course, who did but were bailed out.
>> Cheers
>> Jayanand
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In reply to: Message from ricc at (Ric Carter) ([Leica] Abandoned Harvester factory)