BETTER LIVING THROUGH BRIBES!: GENERAL MOTORS' LOCK ON JOISEY

Public Service Coordinated Transport (PSCT) of New Jersey was the fourth-biggest transit system in the US. According to Ed Tennyson—a Virginia engineer, transportation consultant and former asstistant secretary of the Pennsylvania Dept. of Transportation—GM wangled its way in as  PSCT's de facto planning department in 1936. It continued in the job till 1952.

These are the details, as given to Tennyson by Albert Creamer, special liaison between PSCT and New Jersey’s Public Utility Commission:

Every year, GM would come to New Jersey and set up PSCT’s transportation plan for the upcoming twelve months. Naturally, this involved getting rid of streetcars (except in Newark’s short subway), and putting in GM buses. Then Creamer would head back to Flint, Michigan, pick up a new Cadillac and drive it back to Newark to present to PSCT’s transit manager. 

Public Service bought nothing but General Motors buses, with one exception. Over 1944-47, the company took delivery of 526 Ford buses, but only because GM diesels weren’t available because of the backlog created by the Second World War.

 

 

 

 

 

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3. SO HOW MANY OTHER SECRET MEETINGS LIKE THIS WERE THERE? 

This cozy gathering would never have come to light if not for the fire. Lexington trams disappeared in 1938. The bus conversion in Louisville was held up by WWII, but was a done deal by 1948. 

Seattle engineer Marmion Mills was GM president Alfred Sloan's #1 henchman. He was proud of personally destroying 15 tram systems. Woo hoo Marm!