Readers React to Cologne Archive Collapse and Troubles at Opel | All of Deutsche Welle′s social media channels at a glance | DW | 05.03.2009
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Readers React to Cologne Archive Collapse and Troubles at Opel

Readers expressed a sense of loss after the collapse of part of the Cologne archive building. Others wrote in to support a bail-out plan for Opel.

The destroyed cologne archive

The cause of collapse remained unclear days after it occurred

The following comments reflect the views of DW-WORLD.DE readers. Not all reader comments have been published. DW-WORLD.DE reserves the right to edit for length and appropriateness of content.

Cologne Archive Collapses

By preserving the past in libraries and archives we can understand our present and know things that were forgotten. -- Jose Nigrin, Guatemala

Firemen spead a massive tarp over rubble

The city archives were home to thousands of original documents

It is extremely distressing to read about the great cultural and historic loss of documents and other items apparently lost in the building's collapse. I hope that a recovery effort is possible. Without preserving its past, no country has a future. -- Samuel R. Ganczaruk, USA

It is critical to know our history or we will make the same mistakes over and over. All people have an interest in where we have been. -- John W. Baker, USA

That is really tragic about the Cologne archive, considering that a lot was lost in World War II as well. I think that the advantage of digital over microfilm is that it is easy to back up and make a number of extra copies and that an enormous amount of information can be stored. That would make keeping several backup copies much easier. I think that software is no limitation since they can always be switched from one medium to another. For archive material, 10 copies should be saved as to be sure of not losing anything. The most work of course is digitizing it in the first place. -- Philip, Canada

Germany Debates Bailing Out Opel

General Motors as well as many large corporations must be broken up into smaller privately owned companies. I believe the world needs to consider the real value to society of large corporations. The problem with large corporations, is when you are so big, when you are the only company to produce a certain product, you have no need to provide a quality. -- Lee Davis, USA

Opel and GM logos

Readers discussed Opel's chances of survival independent of GM

My heart goes out to all who have worked in the auto industry. I wonder if there would be a way to redesign the parts needed for cars of the past and future ones, to be more environmentally friendly. Also, maybe this seems far-fetched, but what if when the company does go "green" that they offer some incentive to past owners to convert their cars to "green" technology? Maybe a tax rebate or to reinvest somehow in the parent company so worker's could have some job security? -- Dawn, USA

By reducing the salaries of all the staff by 10 percent to 20 percent at Opel, they will be able to maintain the skills of all employees when the situation improves. No retraining will be needed as all the skills will be in place. Reduce production to say four days a week and just hang in there. Reduce car prices to attract customers, review work procedures and see what activities can be simplified and expedited or eliminated. -- Murray Clarkson, South Africa

I think Opel is moving in the right direction. General Motors is so hard hit that one must fear its demise. Perhaps under the umbrella of another carmaker, Opel could find the time to reorganize under visionary leadership. If the workers are convinced that it is a life or death situation, they will rally and even be ready for some sacrifices. -- Elisabeth Heptner, USA

Germany should set up a holding company called "Deutsche Motoren SE" that brings together BMW, Daimler and Opel as well as Porsche to protect Europe from the Asian imports. -- Charles de Carlo, Australia

A semi-independent Opel separate from GM is completely unacceptable. Saab is already in bankruptcy for the purpose of restructuring and the same should be required for Opel and Vauxhall. Only after that will private and state capital restructure the carmaker for merger with another company. -- Hans Reuther-Fix, Argentina

The federal government as well as those of the German states where Opel has factories will have to help Opel in some way as the auto industry is such an important part of the German economy. It is not just the jobs at the four factories in Germany but the suppliers of parts and components for Opel that will be affected. I am glad that the German government wants to explore all options before making a final decision and not be rushed into a decision. -- Stuart John Pearson, Australia

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