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Detroit Navigates a Changing World

By Bob | Published: March 11, 2011 – 9:16 pm

By Robert J. Pennington, Edited by Clifford Guren

MSN Autos

The Tesla Roadster with it's plug in charger.

This year’s North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) provided more insight into how Detroit hopes to navigate the sharp curves of the rapidly evolving auto industry. The economic downturn and global climate change have created a perfect storm for the automotive industry. Government and consumers alike are calling for a significant change in direction. Detroit has finally embraced the electric vehicle (EV) as its flagship in its turnaround campaign. EVs have come to the forefront because of their ability to make a positive impact on critical issues like the environment and foreign energy dependence. In previous NAIAS shows EVs were sidebars or part of the general green-washing of the auto industry. In 2009 EV’s are the crown jewels of the show.

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Bob vs. Bank

By Bob | Published: March 11, 2011 – 9:02 pm

By Robert J. Pennington

Sign hereI have a small business, I mean, really small. No partners, boards, employees, no office, just me. It is like the “atom” of the business universe, unable to be further reduced, split or simplified. It serves its purpose of providing my economic livelihood, with a simplistic ease. As with any business, the dollars and cents of it flow through a bank, my clearinghouse for income generated by my little enterprising atom. In technical terms I am a sole proprietor, cash accounting, a minimalist of capitalism. My simplistic approach to my business extended to banking, just the basics–a checking account to move dollars to and fro, with a savings account to accumulate the occasional bounty. All is handed over to a very gifted and thorough accountant. Credit was in the form of a credit card. The credit card is where my simple world became a lot more complicated. I have had credit cards from an early age. It took me till after college to truly understand the advantages and consequences of having credit and using it wisely. Mortgages, loans, and the other credit depending activities have been relatively painless to obtain despite being self-employed in the arts. (more…)

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