My name is George C. Joseph. I am the sole owner of Sunshine Dodge-Isuzu, a family owned and operated business in Melbourne, Florida. My family bought and paid for this automobile franchise 35 years ago in 1974. I am the second generation to manage this business.
We currently employ 50+ people and before the economic slowdown we employed over 70 local people. We are active in the community and the local chamber of commerce. We deal with several dozen local vendors on a day to day basis and many more during a month. All depend on our business for part of their livelihood. We are financially strong with great respect in the market place and community. We have strong local presence and stability.
I work every day the store is open, nine to ten hours a day. I know most of our customers and all our employees. Sunshine Dodge is my life.
On Thursday, May 14, 2009 I was notified that my Dodge franchise, that we purchased, will be taken away from my family on June 9, 2009 without compensation and given to another dealer at no cost to them. My new vehicle inventory consists of 125 vehicles with a financed balance of 3 million dollars. This inventory becomes impossible to sell with no factory incentives beyond June 9, 2009. Without the Dodge franchise we can no longer sell a new Dodge as "new," nor will we be able to do any warranty service work. Additionally, my Dodge parts inventory, (approximately $300,000.) is virtually worthless without the ability to perform warranty service. There is no offer from Chrysler to buy back the vehicles or parts inventory.
Our facility was recently totally renovated at Chrysler's insistence, incurring a multi-million dollar debt in the form of a mortgage at Sun Trust Bank.
HOW IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA CAN THIS HAPPEN?
THIS IS A PRIVATE BUSINESS NOT A GOVERNMENT ENTITY
This is beyond imagination! My business is being stolen from me through NO FAULT OF OUR OWN. We did NOTHING wrong.
This atrocity will most likely force my family into bankruptcy. This will also cause our 50+ employees to be unemployed. How will they provide for their families? This is a total economic disaster.
HOW CAN THIS HAPPEN IN A FREE MARKET ECONOMY IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA?
I beseech your help, and look forward to your reply. Thank you.
George C. Joseph
President & Owner
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
I remember hearing about Atlas Shrugged, growing up with a father and a sister who where inspired by the writings of Ayn Rand. I never had been very political, I just thought that how ever society runs as a whole, would be cool with me. I was taught from my family that we live in the best country in the world and that I could be whatever I wanted, if I believed in myself and worked hard everyday to achieve it. I never took the time to question what our government was up to and the motives of politicians, I just assumed that they were for the good of the country and they understood the importance of productive people. From the first chapter of the book, it opened my my eyes about how economic and social theories of society could effect mine and everyone's livelihood. As I was reading excerpts from Atlas Shrugged and the next day I was hearing and seeing politicians saying and doing the same exact action that were in the book, it started to scare me. I have been giving examples of these in my quote of the week, but nothing as hit home as hard as reading this letter (From The American Thinker) from this business man in Florida. This is absolutely unacceptable for this to happen in the United States of America. Please Read:
I am still having a hard time believing this is true...I am looking more deeply into this to make sure it is legit - I do see that they have a website.
Am I the only one that finds this scary? Post a comment and let me know.