To the Editor:
One might assume that to challenge the wisdom of Keith Crain would be foolhardy; however, here goes.
First, the headline on his March 31 column reads: "Tesla's wasting time, energy, money." That's purely conjecture; even if cost figures could be produced, with what would they be compared?
Second, Crain concedes [Tesla CEO Elon] Musk's limited service successes. Neither I nor Crain is sufficiently clairvoyant to predict that Tesla's system will fail as volume increases.
Understandable is Crain's defense of the present vehicle dealer franchise system. The National Automobile Dealers Association is one large gorilla, and Crain certainly does not want to cross it. After all, vehicle dealers have millions if not billions tied up in premises, personnel and years of operation. Putting an omelet back into the shells is no mean feat.
However, nothing ventured, nothing gained.
All progress is dependent on risk, foresight, new ideas and acceptance of challenges. Look at what the Internet has positively achieved in many sectors of our business society.
But why take on a gorilla with an army of lawyers, state representatives, state legislatures and state laws? I say, why not -- if we agree that progress is what this country needs?
As a retired General Motors executive who had dealer-development responsibility in two countries, I was constantly looking for ways and means to improve the dealer distribution system.
If there is a screaming resistance by Crain and NADA against Musk's vision for an alternative to the present dealer vehicle-distribution system, there also must be fear for its chances of success.
Bloomfield Hills, Mich.