Business: Detroit's Worsening Plight

Automen meet with the President as sales continue to sink

It looked like a trustbuster's dream. Last Wednesday the top executives of General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, American Motors and Volkswagen of America all sat down at the same table in the Washington offices of the Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Association for a lunch of asparagus vinaigrette and tomatoes stuffed with chicken salad. But the automen were not fixing prices; they were coordinating strategy for a meeting just after lunch with one of the industry's most powerful critics, Jimmy Carter.

The President had asked them to...

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