By James “Hollywood” Macecari
It never ceases to amaze me how many gullible people are on the internet. We’ve been having a hotly contested debate over on Insane Throttle Youtube Channel about the video I did about “Harley No Longer King”. You can click on it above and see it and leave me your thoughts on it. Anyways, I’ve owned dozens of Harley’s since the beginning of the 1990’s. Currently I own an 01 Fatboy. I’m sorry, I’m a carburetor Tramp. Heard great things about fuel injection, but I don’t do good with new types of things when it comes to a scooter. Hey, I’m still in the stage of trying to accept radios on a scooter. I’ve always believed it was about the wind and sound of the scooter that made the ride.
So, back to good old Harley-Davidson. I find it hilarious how the company has just sat back and let this BS coming out of MSNBC keep going. The company knows the announcement of Steel Tariffs had nothing to do with their decision to close down the K.C plant. The Tariffs had nothing to do with the company wanting to open up a new plant in Thailand either. Like so many other companies out there Harley-Davidson has decided to go with those who wish to report total and utter garbage. I really can’t blame them. As they have done since the 1990’s with catering to the Rubs, they will go to where the Rubs get all their news. Have to make sure they suck up, make sure they don’t blow it even more than they already have.
One of the biggest debates and points that is brought up by die hard Harley-Davidson riders is they own 50% of the big bike market. Ok, So what? That demographic is 45 and up; The ones that have the $20,000 to spend . My question is simple. What does that do for them now that most of those in that demographic are starting to age out? They are having a hell of a time making up for those who leave the lifestyle with newer ones coming in. In the big picture, especially when sales for fourth quarter was down 82% (Regardless the company propaganda on why) what does that 50% actually do for the bottom line? Not a thing. In the end, you have the CEO of Harley Davidson pleading with investors for patience .
Those that read this and watch the video always say. “Who’s Harley-Davidson base?” If you have to ask that question then it’s time to go do your research on the subject before you try and give an opinion on this matter. I get a ton of those comments on the Youtube channel. The Base of Harley-Davidson was the blue collar worker who made the name Harley-Davidson synonymous with the biker lifestyle. It sure the hell wasn’t a bunch of RUBS in pretty leathers that made the name of Harley-Davidson. If that was the case, more scooter tramps would be riding something other than a Harley-Davidson. Sorry, can’t see people wanting to run out and buy a Harley-Davidson because they wanted to act like one of those dorks from “Wild Hogs”. No, people wanted to get into the lifestyle because of the old times who went out there and said “FTW” and lived the true freedom of the scene. Harley-Davidson just used them until they found something better to attach too. How’s that working out for them by the way? Rubs dumping bikes onto the used market without any mileage on the scooters. Good choice Harley.
But back to tariffs. No Harley-Davidson didn’t make the move to close K.C down or open that Thailand plant over them. They did it because they have a failed business model trying to find their way out of the mess they made. By the way. Is it still an American Made bike when they manufacture over in Thailand and sell to that market? Just asking. So leave me some thought on Facebook, Twitter or Youtube. What do you think Harley-Davidson is doing wrong? Or do you think it’s doing just fine? Look forward to the debate.
Harley-Davidson announced in March 2018 that it was closing its Wisconsin plant and moving all manufacturing to Thailand in response to President Donald Trump’s just-announced steel tariffs.
Harley-Davidson has announced the closure of at least one of its United States factories; the company also announced that it would be opening a manufacturing plant in Thailand.
These decisions were both made before Trump imposed tariffs on imported steel; Harley-Davidson did not shut down its Wisconsin plant; Harley-Davidson still builds motorcycles in the United States.
Motorcycle manufacturer Harley-Davidson could face new challenges in the wake of President Donald Trump’s sudden decision to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum in March 2018.
However, a subsequent viral Facebook post exaggerated these challenges, appearing to conflate the announcement with old news stories about Harley-Davidson’s past business decisions:
** BREAKING NEWS ** today March 9 …….. HARLEY DAVIDSON SAID TRUMP ISN’T LOYAL . HE PROMISED AND LIED .. Plant in Wisconsin Closing ENTIRELY, moving to Thailand. CHEAPER TO BUILD Harleys there .. STEEL TARIFF SCREWED THESE WORKERS .. . And these men in Kansas City said *** TRUMP PROMISED TO SHIELD US ***** ALL are getting ” Laid off ” at their Harley Factory along with 800 more employees..
you won’t see this in FOX NEWS.. of course not!!
This Facebook post is largely based on a 9 March 2018 MSNBC segment that featured reporter Garrett Haake speaking with employees at a Harley Davidson plant in Kansas City, Missouri. Some viewers, including the above Facebook poster, may have been confused by the segment, as it did not clearly state that Harley-Davidson first announced that this plant would be closing in January 2018 — more than a month before Trump made his tariff decision.
It is true that some American companies have expressed concern about how new tariffs may affect their business going forward. It is also true that Harley-Davidson will soon be closing a plant in Kansas City, Missouri.
However, these items are not directly related. In fact, Harley has planned on consolidating production at the Kansas City plant since 2015, before Trump was even in office; when the company made the announcement, it said that it was due to slowing motorcycle sales:
Harley-Davidson’s sales fell sharply in 2017 and the company will move ahead with a plan to consolidate manufacturing operations, including the closure of its Kansas City, Mo. plant.
The world’s largest maker of heavyweight motorcycles has struggled to reverse a four-year sales slide, with growth overseas somewhat helping offset a decline in the U.S. bike market.
Additionally, Harley-Davidson announced in 2017 that it would be opening a manufacturing plant in Thailand. However, Harley said at the time that the decision was made to better serve the burgeoning market in southeast Asia, and that the decision would not affect manufacturing in the United States:
The Thailand facility “will allow us to be more responsive and competitive in the ASEAN region and China,” Harley-Davidson public relations manager Katie Whitmore said.
“Increased access and affordability for our customers in the region is key to growth for the company in total,” she said. “There is no intent to reduce H-D U.S. manufacturing due to this expansion.”
The plant would let Milwaukee-based Harley-Davidson avoid Thailand’s up to 60 percent tariff on imported motorcycles and help it get tax breaks when exporting to Thailand’s neighbors, thanks to a trade arrangement among members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nation (ASEAN).
Harley opened a plant in India in 2011. It also assembles motorcycles at a plant in Brazil.
The company released a statement in March 2018 saying that these tariffs, as well as tariffs imposed in retaliation by the European Union, could directly hurt their business:
“We support free and fair trade,” the company said in a statement. “Import tariffs on steel and aluminum will drive up costs for all products made with these raw materials, regardless of their origin. Additionally, a punitive, retaliatory tariff on Harley-Davidson motorcycles in any market would have a significant impact on our sales, our dealers, their suppliers and our customers in those markets.”
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March 15th on Motorcycle Madhouse. Hollywood and Doublebarrel discuss issues affecting motorcycle clubs and in the second segment we have an interview with Chuck “BBA” Jines. A hard Riding Scooter Tramp that criss crosses the United States while living off the grid
March 22nd on Motorcycle Madhouse Good Time Charlie of Biker Inner Circle & Debate between James” Hollywood”Macecari” and Sheriff Dale J Schmidt of Dodge County on the Lomira Outlaws M/C Profiling
March 29th on Motorcycle Madhouse- Popeye and OG from Texas Biker radio and a special interview with Jim Harris . This episode will be dedicated to discussing the Waco “Twin Peaks” episode and the win against Abel Reyna