TOKYO -- If the crises at General Motors and Ford Motor Co. lead to an anti-Japanese political backlash, it will be Toyota Motor Corp.'s fault.
I don't want to see a backlash, so I offer Toyota this advice: Lobby the Japanese government to push the yen up.
Before I go any farther, let's be clear about one thing. The Japanese carmakers have earned, not stolen, their sales gains. Put simply, Toyota is a better carmaker. That is why it is winning in the marketplace. The Michigan-based auto industry should stop wringing its hands and get to work if it wants to change that.
That said, politicians will head for the microphones if pensioners in key states such as Florida and Arizona lose their health benefits. Congress will start looking for villains.
Even if Toyota isn't targeted directly, it will be caught in the crossfire. The prudent course for Toyota goes beyond trying to wrap itself in the American flag, as it has been doing.