Tag Archives: Henry Ford

Henry Ford vs. Elon Musk, by Eric Peters

One’s a producer, the other’s a conman. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

Henry Ford was the antithesis of Elon Musk. The latter uses government to force people into cars that are more expensive and less practical, thereby diminishing personal mobility. The former designed and built a car that cost less (each successive model year) and was far more versatile and practical than a horse and buggy, that freed people from being largely stuck where they were.

Ford did not use the power of the government to compel his rivals to subsidize his operations, as Musk has done (via the selling of what are styled “carbon credits” to other car companies, who are under regulatory duress to either build a certain number of EeeeeeeeeVeeeeees or buy “credit” – from Elon – for having built them).

The Model T was the antithesis of Tesla’s cars. The latter are designed to be very high-performance and for that reason very consumptive, of both power and raw materials. They are not designed for longevity or owner-serviceability. They are operationally fragile in that extreme conditions – as of high heat and extreme cold – greatly diminish their functionality.

The Model T was specifically designed to be as simple and practical as possible. It had no fuel or water pump. It did not even need a small starter battery in order to run as the engine was designed to be turned over by hand and – once running – magnetos kept it running.

Continue reading→

A Tale of Two Geniuses, by Eric Peters

Henry Ford goes down in history as the man who mass-produced cars. Elon Musk will go down in history as the man who mass-produced government subsidies. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:

Elon Musk is hailed as a “genius” by some.

And he is – but not in the way they mean it.

Like Henry Ford, Musk took something he didn’t invent that was essentially a curiosity and recast it in a different way. The difference being that when Henry Ford simplified the car by standardizing parts and mass producing them on an assembly line – as opposed to hand-building them, one at a time, as had been prior practice – the result was a much less expensive and far more practical car that almost anyone could afford to buy.

Musk did the opposite.

The early electric cars were simpler as well as more practical than non-electric cars; this was a big part of their initial appeal, 100 years ago, when they were (briefly) competitive with early non-electric cars. You didn’t have to hand-crank the engine and risk breaking your wrist – because of course there was no engine. Instead, an electric motor connected to the drive wheels and an array of lead-acid batteries. The car turned off – and on – and off you went.

Continue reading→

He Said That? 12/6/18

From Henry Ford (1863–1947), American captain of industry, business magnate, founder of the Ford Motor Company, and the sponsor of the development of the assembly line technique of mass production:

Failure is only the opportunity more intelligently to begin again.

He Said That? 4/29/18

From Henry Ford (1863–1947), founder of the Ford Motor Company and the sponsor of the development of the assembly line technique of mass production:

It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning.