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Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

How the Edsel worked

By Marshall Brain

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) On Sept. 4, 2007, we will celebrate the 50th anniversary of one of the most famous disasters in automotive history: the Edsel. Even 50 years later people still recognize the name Edsel and associate it with failure. What was it that happened 50 years ago to create such an enduring legacy? Let's find out.

If you could get in a time machine and travel back to the summer of 1957, one thing you would notice is a big ad campaign that had really captured the imagination of the American public. The Ford motor company had decided to create a brand new division and they were advertising the new cars heavily. Entirely new car divisions are not that common - the last one to happen in an American car company is the Saturn division from General Motors over two decades ago. The new Edsel division alone was enough to raise interest.

More importantly, the Edsel division of the Ford Motor company was going to be something special. The cars would be new, exciting. The ad campaign teased people by showing them nothing about this new line of cars. In an ad you might see a hood ornament, or a car under a tarp. And the ad campaign worked. People were very excited and very curious about the new line of Edsel cars coming out.

Sept. 4, 1957, was the unveiling. People could go to the new Edsel dealership in their neighborhood to see the new car. And people did go in droves. The problem was, nobody was buying. That was the beginning of the end for the Edsel.

It is hard for us today to understand how this could have happened. How could an ad campaign work so well, while yielding no buyers? One thing we might compare it to was the launch of the Segway six years ago. Remember the AMAZING amount of hype that surrounded the Segway? The Segway was going to change the world, but no one knew what the Segway was. Then, on the day of announcement, we all saw that the Segway was a scooter. Sure it was a self-balancing scooter and that was cool. But there was no way the Segway could match the hype that preceded it, and everyone was disappointed. That is exactly the kind of thing that happened to the Edsel.

The Edsel did have some interesting features, but each one was a little kooky. The look of the car was definitely unique, with a huge grill shaped like the letter "O". And the automatic transmission was controlled by buttons located in the center of the steering wheel. But it was just kooky enough to turn people off rather than to turn them on. Also, people were expecting something completely new, while in reality the Edsels were built on top of an existing Ford chassis. That was not very exciting to people.

The Edsel also had manufacturing problems. Lots of them. Ford decided that it would not build dedicated Edsel factories. Instead, Edsels were put together on normal Ford and Mercury assembly lines at the end of the day. The problem was, switching over from one car line to another did not work very well, and Edsels would often have the wrong parts, or things would not be adjusted right. Some people said that Edsel stood for "Every Day Something Else Leaks." Once consumers get the impression that a car has quality problems, it is very hard to shake that feeling.

By the Edsel's third model year Ford was ready to throw in the towel. At that point the company had spent over $2 billion (in today's dollars) on a car division that completely disappeared.

People have all sorts of theories for why the Edsel was such a spectacular failure. Some blame the name. Some blame the styling of the car in its first year. Some blame the September launch date - the new model year typically was announced in November, so the Edsel looked expensive. Some blame the size of the car. Some blame timing - a big recession started at the end of 1957.

Maybe it was a combination of all these things, plus the Segway effect, the kookiness and the quality problems. Whatever it was, we now know that the Edsel did not work. Today we still honor this fact by making the word Edsel synonymous with failure.

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Previously:


How Stinger missiles work
How hybrid cars work
How sharks work
How mosquitoes work
How diesel engines work
How water towers work
How the Dawn mission works
How Kassam rockets work
How the North American Eagle works
Why aren't we flying to work?
How tofu and soy milk work
How Colony Collapse Disorder works
How airbags work
How the U.S. income tax works
How gum works
How caffeine works
How Daylight Saving Time works
How a cruise missile works
How snow making works

© 2007, How Stuff Works Inc. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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