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Chrysler's "Godfather" Blesses Her Italian "Wedding"

"Godfather" would be her former chairman, Lee Iaccoca. He has a more sanguine view of the company's turnaround potential partnered with Fiat than we do, or did. Given his record in the earlier turnaround, his views are worth noting, and we partly defer to him.

Not surprisingly, he is more sanguine on the suitor, Fiat, than we were. He thinks that Fiat's chairman, Mazzone, might have the "charisma" needed to turn Chrysler around. "Charisma" was an important part of Iacocca's success formula as well, so we'll have to take his word on that one as well.

The "old man" did have some advice for the "young couple:" Pay off your debts (to the government) as fast as possible, so you don't have bureaucrats breathing down your necks, telling you how to run your business. A flesh-and-blood young couple would do well to heed that advice as well, so that they don't have bill collectors telling them how to run their lives.

Iacocca is optimistic about the prospects of both Chrysler and Ford (he worked at both companies), which are at least somewhat entrepreneurial. He is least positive on hidebound, bureaucratic General Motors.