All Fired Up About Tesla

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Maybe you saw the YouTube video of a Tesla electric car going up in smoke?

I was tempted to write something about it, but decided against. Reason? I don’t see battery fire as a significant problem. Not as such, anyhow.

Gasoline fires happen occasionally, too. I once burnt my ’73 Super Beetle to a crisp.

Per OJ, it happens.

To my knowledge, there have been very few problems with modern electric (and hybrid car) car batteries, at least as far as them catching fire, or exploding.

The Toyota Prius has been in widespread circulation for more than ten years. There are numerous other hybrid models available, too. Also “pure” electric cars, such as the Chevy Volt, the Nissan Leaf and Honda RAV4 electric. These all tote around several hundred pounds of batteries (nickle metal hydride, lithium-ion, etc.). These batteries may be expensive, but they’re pretty safe, if history is any guide. At least, as safe as carrying around 15 gallons or so of highly volatile gas. Problems can arise, of course – with either power source. But the overall danger is minimal, assuming decent design – and proper handling.toasted Beetle picture

Back in the day (mid 1990s) Ford fooled around with a sodium sulfur battery. A hot battery. It had to be maintained at a temperature of several hundred degrees – else it would melt down like a portable Chernobyl.

Now that was a fire hazard!

My beef with the Tesla – the real beef, as I see it – isn’t that the car is dangerous.

It’s that it’s an absurdity.

A car with a starting price of $70,000 is by definition absurd as an “economical” car. And isn’t that the main reason for making electric cars? To get around paying a small fortune for gas?

But if you can afford to pay a large fortune for the car, you are not worried about paying $4 a gallon for fuel.

If the cost of getting around is an issue, you’d be better off buying a Prius – which costs a third as much as a new Tesla – and putting the $50,000 you just saved toward gas.

For the next 50 years.

Elon Musk – the billionaire behind Tesla – may not comprehend this. Because he is a billionaire. He possesses (for the math-impaired) more than a thousand million dollars. $70,000 (or $700,000) is, to a billionaire, what $70.00 is to people like you and me.towed Tesla

Now, if his car cost say a bit more than a Prius – but out-looked it and out-performed it – then, he’d have something. Something real people – you know, the ones who have to worry about money – might be interested in.

Something that would not require massive subsidies to entice “buyers,” as in the case of the Tesla. (I use the term ironically since they’re only buying some of the car. We’re buying the rest of it.)

But the Tesla is very quick, right? Yes – but only very briefly. Floor the Tesla and it will do 0-60 in just over 4 seconds. And then, stop. Because the batteries will be dead. Same goes for continuous high-speed operation.

It must be driven very gingerly  . . . if you expect to keep on driving it.

As opposed to charging it.

Or towing it.

A car with tremendous performance potential that cannot be used more than once or twice – or for any sustained period – without severely depleting its batteries – and thus, dramatically reducing its range and forcing you to stop for a lengthy recharge session – is as absurd as a BMW M5 or Corvette fitted with a gas tank that only holds a gallon of fuel… which you must re-fill with a syringe.

Any $15,000 new economy car can be driven farther – at much higher speeds – for much longer than the Tesla. "empty" picture

And for less than Tesla charges for its Model S, you can buy any of several high-performance cars that will out-accelerate it repeatedly. That can be driven at high triple digit speeds for hours rather than minutes – and take minutes rather than hours to refuel.

A new Mustang GT, for instance. Or a V-6 equipped Accord, perhaps? It might not be quite as quick, 0-60 – but you can drive the Accord all day long at 80-plus MPH. That’s something you can’t do in a Tesla.

Unless you don’t mind stopping for an hour or so every 30 minutes.

The danger with this car isn’t fire.

It’s foolishness.

Throw it in the Woods?

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124 COMMENTS

    • really… no takers?? Not that I was trolling, just on topic and referencing another recent post – and the vid is a very good assessment of both cars, the conclusion may surprise you. No, really. Check it out for some perspective.

      And Tor/Tor fans, I did not mean that as a pejorative at all. I meant to convey that you are clear-thinking, well spoken, and with a certain flare. A wonderful fusion of science and art. Salut!

  1. The latest story about a Flaming Tesla claimed the fire was caused by “road debris.” I’ve run over road debris before and gotten a flat, body scratch, hubcap damage, etc. But I’ve never had a car burst into flames as a result. To me, there’s something wrong with the design if this kind of thing is even possible. Yeah, I know, it’s only a few cars out of thousands, etc. But still.

    I do enjoy seeing what this is doing to Tesla stock, however. Looking forward to Tesla becoming the next flaming bag of poop on the White House steps. 🙂

  2. @Eric – – Want to know how the public will be forced to pay for rich boys Tesla (and future GM) toys?
    Answer here:

    The Betrayal of Taxpayers
    October 20, 2013 By Jon Coupal

    At the end of September, Assembly Bill 8 was signed by Governor Brown and became law. This is horrible news for taxpayers because California motorists will now be paying $2.3 billion in additional taxes and charges. Adding insult to injury, taxpayers will find their hard earned dollars being used to subsidize programs such as the purchase of all electric cars, like the Tesla that, even with the taxpayer provided discount, can be afforded only by a handful of wealthy individuals. Money will also be lavished on the hydrogen network designed to service vehicles of which, about 250 currently exist.

    The bill for ordinary California drivers may not be immediately noticeable because these “surcharges” are buried in vehicle registration and charges for the disposal of tires and other auto services. But they are there nonetheless and, like a death by a thousand cuts, working class Californians are paying for questionable programs that citizens in other states simply don’t have to suffer.

    With all the burdens Sacramento imposes on taxpayers — we already have the highest state sales in all 50 states, the highest marginal income tax rate and the highest gas tax — these additional taxes may not get much attention from the general public — at least not at first.

    But the real problem for taxpayers with the approval of this kind of legislation runs much deeper than its immediate cost because it was passed in the Legislature using the technique of bribing unconvinced lawmakers to vote yes by offering the prospect of reduced regulation on businesses important to those lawmakers’ districts. Nine Republicans, who usually put taxpayers’ interests first, were persuaded to support AB 8 by the lure of reduced regulations.

    While the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association believes that business is shouldering an unreasonable burden of regulations, especially compared to other states, these regulations should be judged individually on their merits. The offer of reform should not be used by the majority party to solicit payoffs — higher taxes — in return for doing the right thing.

    However, against type, it is Republicans in the Capitol who provided the votes to guarantee this bad legislation became law. And it is not the first time. Sadly, we are sensing a trend. Last year, the Legislature placed a new one percent tax on the sale of lumber, with four Republicans providing the votes to put the measure over the top. Here, the bribe was that some restrictions on the timber industry would be lifted.

    At this point, it is important to note the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association is non-partisan. More than a third of members are Democrats and in the past taxpayers have had the support of some Democratic lawmakers who recognized that taxpayers are the backbone of a prosperous economy. However, the majority party in the Legislature is now dominated by those who want to raise more revenue and seem willing to use any stratagem, no matter how sleazy, to get it.

    To be fair, a majority of Republican legislators continue to stand firm. Only a few have drunk the “higher taxes in return for regulatory reform” Kool-Aid. But the question must be asked of all lawmakers: “Who do you serve?” Unfortunately some Republicans, on whom taxpayers rely to defend their interests, are apparently feeling diminished by their minority status and are so desperate for the attention that, over time, they are forgetting who they serve.

    But trading permanent tax hikes for what may prove very temporary regulatory relief is a deal with the devil. For a handful of Republicans, their vote for Assembly Bill 8 may have reflected the best of intentions. But good intentions only make for a suitable paving surface to a certain location better left unmentioned.

    http://www.hjta.org/california-commentary/betrayal-taxpayers

    • @Tor – How in the world do you find that stuff? 🙂

      By the way. Don’t scare me like that. My health plan is with Kaiser, and the letter I just received wants me to create an online account to save postage on the 300 page (yes 300) coverage explination. How do I become an illegal alien, because I want MY OBAMAPHONE and free healthcare.

        • @Tor – I haven’t seen a doc in over 3 years thankfully. Just what I need. A virtual proctology exam from my cell phone, because they don’t want me to show up and actually get something for my $800.00/mo. I am going Galt friggin Alien. ?Comprende? I want Jose to have to wait for me in line.

          • @Tor -The greenie-wennies say making electricity in California is just so planet killing dirty, so no new plants or high tension lines can be built anywhere in the state. The joke is California imports a big chunk of its electricity from Utah, Montana, Arizona, Nevada and Mexico coal fired plants. Mindless expensive kilowatts of inefficiency at its best. 1000 miles of wire to fill their little status mobiles. Proof LSD, universities and politics permanently damage the mind. Now they are on about the multi-billion dollar never-to-be-built high speed bullet train to nowhere. How could Ayn Rand be so prophetically correct?

  3. When the fire department arrived, in order to gain access to the source of the fire, punctured holes in the top of the battery’s protective metal plate and applying water. They should not have punctured the metal firewall, as the newly created holes allowed the flames to then vent upwards into the front trunk section of the Model S.

    You are 5 times more likely to experience a fire in a conventional gasoline car than a Tesla. For consumers concerned about fire risk, there should be absolutely zero doubt that it is safer to power a car with a battery than a large tank of highly flammable liquid.

    The incident began when a curved section that fell off a semi-trailer with just the right geometry caused a powerful lever action as it went under the car. It punched upward and impaled the Model S with a peak force on the order of 25 tons. Only a force of this magnitude would be strong enough to punch a 3 inch diameter hole through the quarter inch armor plate protecting the base of the vehicle.

    The Model S owner was able to exit the highway as instructed by the onboard alert system, bring the car to a stop, and depart the vehicle without injury. A fire caused by the impact began in the front battery module – the battery pack has a total of 16 modules – but was contained to the front section of the car by internal firewalls within the pack. Vents built into the battery pack directed the flames down towards the road and away from the vehicle.

    Elon Musk’s full explanation of the Tesla fire
    http://www.forbes.com/sites/joannmuller/2013/10/04/elon-musk-explains-tesla-fire-that-consumed-headlines/

  4. Eric–I never considered myself to be particularly “math impaired”, but maybe I really am! Anyway, I stood up and took notice of your brilliant “how much the cost of a Tesla feels to a billionaire” and calculated my own ratio based on my own financial situation (not getting too much into those details, but…) and discovered that what $70,000 is to a billionaire is to me $21. Oh Lord!

    In the setting where I work surrounded by Bel Air, Beverly Hills, and so on, I feel like the one new car I seem to be seeing a surprising lot of is the Tesla sedan. (A few years ago, it was the Porche Panamera, a sedan that stood out for me as a violation of the “brand positioning” principle I had learned in my college marketing classes, wherein what a brand is known for should never be turning out something else, but which has been violated by automobiles for quite some time now, such as there being such a thing as a “Cadillac Truck”. I wonder, is Rolls Royce soon to come out with a two-seater sports car, or an SUV?)

    Teslas look pretty cool (I suppose because they are different), but honestly, I really couldn’t fathom why somebody who supposedly was smart enough to make a lot of money would actually waste it on something as impractical as that. The nuisance of that car would kill me. But I guess concerning making money, I could quote Parmahansa Yogananda who once said to a student complaining about another guru who was a meat eater, “Once you have achieved the goal, you no longer need the path”. And anyway, I have seen myself lusting after some Ferraris I have seen (but I know it is only “dreams”), even though one could never ever really get any practical value out of a car like that on our heavily speed-limited roadways. (And I won’t even bother to get into something like a Bugatti Veyron.) It has to be simply for “show off” value, like a man buying immense diamonds for his wife. I guess using the “diamond” metaphor, the type of person who would buy a “non-exploitative” diamond (not coming from the mines of South Africa or wherever) is the type who makes his automotive statement by buying a Tesla.

    • @Tomoz – said “supposedly was smart enough to make a lot of money would actually waste it on ..”

      My experience is not to confuse one with the other. I knew a brilliant, very wealthy brain surgeon, who could not understand why someone stole his $3,000.00 camera that he left on the dash of his unlocked car at the beach. Doh!

      • Doh!

        Wouldn’t that actually be “DUHHHHH….”?

        Some people who are book smart and talented don’t have the common sense God gave a housefly.

    • That’s it, Tomaz – “green” snobbery at the elite level.

      It’s as hard for people like us – I’m assuming middle class income/net worth – to fathom the world of the billionaire as it is for the guy living in his $2,300 single wide to fathom our lives.

      To be very clear (Clovers, this is for you): I am not fulminating against “the rich” – or people more affluent than I am. If a rich guy wants a Tesla – or a Bugatti – great, go for it!

      But, please – don’t “ask” me to help finance its creation or purchase.

      • CloverEric you talk about paying for someone’s electric car? Eric if we would not have you and others that promote 12 mpg gas hogs all these years then I would be paying 2 bucks for a gallon of gas. We need to promote gas saving vehicles as much as possible so I will not be paying 50 bucks a gallon in my lifetime or 1000 bucks a gallon in our kids lifetime if you had kids. The only reason they are saying we will be fuel independent in this country in a few years is because your government made it so. If you were in charge it never would happen.Clover

        • Poor o’l Clover!

          Didn’t you know you are paying about $2 a gallon for gas?

          Less, actually.

          Take away the taxes – about 70 cents per gallon – and the cost (currently) is about $2.30

          Now, adjust for inflation – that is, price the gas in real terms – and you’re paying about the same today as you were in 1969… about 40 cents (in real money) per gallon.

          PS: We have decided to make this a pay-as-you-post deal. For you.

          In order to use up our space and bandwidth, a fee of 50 cents per post will henceforth be applicable to you, payable via the “donate” button at the top of the page. This is necessary because you – unlike other posters – add nothing of value to the site.

          There is no such thing as a free lunch, Clover.

          But unlike the government, we won’t force you to pay. You can pay if you wish to post.

          Consider it a lesson in free market economics.

          You’re welcome, by the way.

        • Wow Clover, you really don’t read what’s posted here do you? Although Mr. Peters (along with many of the rest of us hoons out here in asphalt land) likes his classic muscle cars, he also rides and promotes motorcycling. The aggregate fuel economy of his (seldom driven) classic muscle car along with his motorcycling could easily exceed your econo-box’s efficiency. In my case, let’s say I drive my V8 SUV half the time and ride my KLR 650 the other half (actually the Explorer sits most of the time, but I’ll stipulate on 50% usage to be generous). At 16 MPG average for the Explorer and 47 MPG for the KLR my average fuel economy between the two would work out to 31.5 MPG which is in the neighborhood of what your run of the mill econo-box will get on a good day.

          But the truth is the SUV sits most of the time, reserved for runs to the grocery store (every two weeks or so, 12 miles round trip) and I ride one of my bikes. I drive my full size pick up even less (typically not even once a month) just to run errands like Eric does. Otherwise I drive my Miata when the weather is nasty and it consistently averages 30 MPG. So in actuality, my aggregate gas mileage, even with 2 vehicles with V8 engines in my stable, easily averages in the mid 30’s.

          And when I fill up, I pay fuel taxes which in this state go to maintain the roads and highways. None of my vehicles are government subsidized. Promoting EV’s by paying people to build and drive them with tax subsidies is stealing from the many for the benefit of the few. If EV’s, which are elsewhere emissions vehicles by the way so they aren’t really an environmental improvement, were truly viable on the consumer market there would be no need for subsidies. And should gas prices go up sufficiently, they may yet become viable. But using the monopoly of force known as government to force them onto the market at the expense of the rest of us is wrong.

          If we ever do become “fuel independent” in these united states, you can rest assured it will be the free market working in spite of government intervention, not because of it. And if this government were really all that concerned about wasting fuel and energy they would have stopped all this foreign military intervention with its insatiable daily appetite for liquid hydrocarbons for planes, tanks, ships, helicopters, trucks, trains and so on and so forth. The fuel savings (and the lost revenue to big oil) would be incredible if Uncle Sam would just practice actual national defense instead occupying half the world with its foreign legions and pissing off our neighbors. Wake up and smell the empire clover.

          So, anyway clover, will you get back pay since they’ve furloughed you for the duration of the regime’s little temper tantrum..errr..I mean “government shutdown”? Or are you trolling for free jess cuz you is bored?

          • Editor’s Note:

            Clover’s post has been withheld pending the 50 cents he has been told he must pay for the privilege of consuming space on this site.

            Clover: Please click on the “donate” button at the top of the page and remit the 50 cents. Your latest post will appear once payment is processed.

  5. How about writing an article on the Honda RAV4 electric, Eric? 😉

    After that, we can get to work on setting up a proper site for Mr. Minotaur…before your comment threads are crushed under the weight of his editorial triumphs.

    • Hi James,

      I’ve asked for one – we’ll see if they deliver!

      That’s been a real problem for me with all electric cars. I live 4-5 hours (and 200-plus highway miles) away from the press car fleets. The only electric car that can make it here without an extended pit stop to re-charge is the Volt.

      The others either have to be flat-bedded here, or it takes the driver twice as long to do the hand-off.

    • Hey James, I hear you on the thread clogging. But are you sure you understand what it is Eric does?

      Does Eric just write articles, or would his excellent round content that includes memes, inside jokes, and hilarious visuals, be ruthlessly squared into Platonic Opinion Column Form if featured anywhere else?

      Is there such a thing as a proper Platonic Form of discourse for Libertarian sites? Whose site do you find easiest to read and navigate? Take us to your leader. We welcome guidance.

      Eric is part of the Lew Rockwell Solar System and its 17 million dollar endowment. His is sometimes also well endowed by his regular visitors here who are able to contribute value to match the value he freely gives.

      Eric is part of the cause. Mr. Minotaur is part of the effect. Tor is a flash-in-the-pan meteorite streaking through the greater Libertarian Universe. An itinerant builder of transient labyrinths from Libertarian Universe matter to make bull runs through just for fun and self-amusement.

      I’m just bright and brilliant ol’ Hale-Bopp. No one should go all Heaven’s Gate on my account. The sun and earth are your mentors, stay off my isolating trail of tales told by idiots. Enjoy a laugh at my expense and then go back to your grindstone and righteous true orbit if you know what’s good for you. My sound and fury signifies next to nothing, though I am free to streak on by and rapidly achieve escape velocity as I go onward to the stars.

      To stop crushing threads, I could limit my rants to 150 words, unless they’re directly related to the OT. I could initially relate each thread to something in the article and reframe and restate the original content so as not to lose the mental nutritional value of the bread and butter. Unrelated things from another world could be confined to Eric’s posts that begin “Today’s Thoughts”

      You’re absolutely right that I should remain light and not unnecessarily blind the good folk here. Folks are trying to read the Daily Planet, not the Kilometers of Kolumns of Kaleidoscopic Konflagrations of overly dense peanut galley Kryptonite prose, including this comment that definitely exceeds 150 words.

      • Tor,

        Don’t you dare tone it down – or edit it down!

        Gems, all. Every morning, I enjoy my first cup of coffee all the more because of the morsels of Libertarian (and literary) excellence I know I’ll find waiting for me.

        Keep ’em coming!

        • That’s good to hear. It’s rare to find somewhere decent to metabolize within gliding motility range on this petrisphere of 7.1 billion sentient microbes, I don’t want to foul such pleasantly rare respirable air.

          It’s still a gentle dream for me most of the time, I tend to create and reside within electromagnetic toons of fantastical ephemera. The walking dead bullies and bullshitters run so thick in the tangible ecliptic of flesh and blood realpolitik.

          It’s been a bad week, a precious 32 year old fellow erythrocyte carrier has shuffled off this mortal milky spiral of icy delights and warm swirling darks.

          https://d3e94wzv4dpoqy.cloudfront.net/l/b1a42d9faa788ccfb04e30c7c1fea00a_l.png

          This quantized digital capture is near the end of her being a sense perceptible particlewave . Not sure one can comprehend who she really is since in this iteration she’s filled to the gills with lunatical leukocytes.

          Probably hematopoietic hater’s justice for tempting the fates and daring to be so unapologetically beautiful while utterly regretless and pitiless of the mucosal masses of maundy marauding macrophages who never were and never will be.

          This was the final song she was waltzed off into the woods with:

          Will You Be There – Boyce

          Will You Be There – MJ

          Forever eternally aflutter see her whirl and hear her whisper whenever you’re walking in the woods.

        • eric wrote, “Tor, Don’t you dare tone it down – or edit it down!”

          For what it’s worth, I concur.

      • Dear Tor,

        Speaking only for myself, I don’t have any problem with your posts.

        Say what you need to say. I’m sure readers will take away what they find relevant for them. They will pick and choose what resonates with them.

        It definitely makes a difference that you use appropriate paragraph breaks. Long posts without appropriate paragraph breaks are definitely a no-no.

        They can make otherwise good content so difficult to follow many readers will give up.

        • Bevin,

          I agree with your comment.

          Good use of paragraphs makes it much easier for me (and others) to read. I learned many years ago that with the written word, white space was my friend.

          • Dear mith,

            Amen to that!

            And to short, active voice SVO sentences.

            SVO: Subject verb object period

            Repeat.

            Can’t overemphasize the importance of that.

      • Dear Tor,

        I’ve been watching “Under the Dome.”

        Season 1 Episode 13 has a scene that captures the spirit of the series:

        Barbie: You want to know a secret? You may think that you’re some kind of god to these people. I think we both know what you really are.

        Big Jim: (smirks) What’s that? A criminal?

        Barbie: Worse. A politician.

        Now is that great anti-authoritarian writing or what?

        The series is clearly political allegory. The town under the dome is a microcosmic version of today’s Amerikan police state, contained with one of those souvenir glass snow globes.

        Inside, all the ingredients of Amerika under the Bushobama Regime are there. Gun confiscation. Illegal searches. Summary executions. Barbie is even a Snowden type character.

        • And Stephen King never pushes too hard. He’s informs at either an elementary or intermediate intensity.

          And he KISS using SVO and plenty of mental paragraph breaks.

          • Dear Tor,

            Yes. I was pleasantly surprised by UTD. If it contained any statist advocacy, I didn’t notice it.

            The political allegory is unmistakable but not “hit you over the head” obvious. King and the adaptation writers “show, not tell.” Only after they have shown, do they tell. Then they clinch it with the dialogue I mentioned.

      • I actually find your comments to be a PITA…
        I have to READ THEM ALL. 😉

        I learn a lot, and you find some AWESOME Stuff – so I’ll trade the time for the knowledge. 🙂 It’s worth it.

    • “before your comment threads are crushed under the weight of his editorial triumphs.”

      Hasn’t happened yet. Without Tor’s insights I wouldn’t visit the threads nearly so often. He’s a fixture here, one of our icons. I’ll wander off if he disappears from here.

      • I’ve been wondering what was going on with the site lately with all the crashing and what not. It’s Tor’s comment threads crushing and weighing it down! HA

          • Dood, that is fo sho! With the E-roc at the helm and all these crazy moffuggers thinking for themselves and shit. I mean damn. It ain’t enough these moffugger here can write, but these doods know maff too! Maff.. Some of deez doods know geometry. I’ll tell you the shetz that get me is the doods that be knowing trigonometry and calculus. I mean calculus! Got-Damn, that’s enough to drive a bix nood CraZy!!!

            I’m just going to continue keeping my head down and this site up.

            Gnomesayin’

          • Word, D-man. When shit like that jump off, it’s a high potentiality for the average mofugga to bitch out. You stood tall, though. 😉

          • *Flushed*

            I’ve been out in the yard all day. I went through nine bags of concrete. I poured a lawn jockey, a toro lantern, and a water melon boy. About midway through the process a guy came over to pick up an already made lantern for his koi pond. Him and I loaded all the pieces into his jeep. I ran rebar and electric wires though the lawn jockey too. I was able to use my awesome vibrating table for all the molds but the jockey. He is too big and heavy to get his ass on the table. Had to use the vibrating dildo on him! He likes it. Oh, I also made a frame from 2x4s to hold the jockey upside down. After all that I hung a gutter and drain off the back of a workshop shed I just had built. Then I went back to check on the casts. One of them requires a recessed section cut out so it can lock into the base it sits on, so I dug it out a bit and made it smooth. Then I changed the earl on the yaris. Next I checked on the casts one more time. It was starting to get dark around this point, so I decided to bust out the backpack blower and take care of the leaves real quick because it supposed to rain tomorrow. I just finished eating dinner and have a curly head cigar burning now. But wait! That’s not all.. So like I said, the cache should be flushed/deleted. ha

            Are you seeing dated versions of pages still?

            • Hey Mang!

              While you were pouring ‘crete and raking leaves, I was bushhogging the field one last time (hopefully) and finishing up the exterior repaint of the guest cottage. Also had to fix the tractor’s three point hitch, do some stuff for Jill on the chicken coop and (for me) clean/detail the Kz900. Wire wheel spokes are a bee-yutch!

          • @Dom – OK, LOL. Towel thrown down on the floor. I thought a ” lawn jockey” was outlawed in VA. Or was it just the rebel flag? 🙂

            • No, I’ve been using Honda spray detailer – which I’ve been pretty happy with. I’ll check out the S100, though – thanks for the tip!

          • @Garysco – ” I thought a ” lawn jockey” was outlawed in VA.”

            I’m bringing it back! Three different styles! Eric has dibs on the water melon boy though!

  6. All Fired Up About Fordism

    Fordism is a manufacturing system designed to spew out standardized, low-cost goods and afford its workers decent enough wages to buy them. It has also been described as “a model of economic expansion and technological progress based on mass production: the manufacture of standardized products in huge volumes using special purpose machinery and unskilled labor”. Although Fordism was a method used to improve productivity in the automotive industry, this principle could be applied to any kind of manufacturing process. Major success stemmed from three major principles:

    1 The standardization of the product (nothing hand-made: everything is made through machines, molds and not by skilled craftsmanship)
    2 The use of special-purpose tools and/or equipment designed to make assembly lines possible: tools are designed to permit workers with low skill levels to operate “assembly lines”—where each worker does one task over and over and over again—like on a doll assembly line, where one worker might spend all day every day screwing on doll heads.
    3 Workers are paid higher “living” wages, so they can afford to purchase the products they make.

    These principles coupled with a technological revolution during Henry Ford’s time allowed for his revolutionary form of labor to flourish. It is true that his assembly line was revolutionary, but it was in no way original. His most original contribution to the modern world was his breaking down of complex tasks into simpler ones with the help of specialized tools. This allowed for a very adaptable flexibility allowing the assembly line to change its components whenever the product being assembled, changed enough to warrant a change in tools.

    His accomplishment was recognizing the potential of breaking all labor down into its components only to build it back up again in a more effective and productive combination, therefore to produce an optimum method for the real world. The major advantages of such a change was that it cut down on the man power necessary for the factory to operate, not to mention that it deskilled the labor itself, cutting down on costs of production. It also reduced challenges to existing power, since far fewer workers progressed beyond the menial basic levels of production.

    Neo-Fordism

    Information technology, white-collar work and specialization are some of the attributes of Neo-Fordism.

    The period after Fordism, Neo-Fordism, implies that global capitalism has reconstructed classical Fordism, overcoming its inconsistencies.

    In Neo-Fordist economies:
    New information technologies are important.
    Products are marketed to niche markets rather than in mass consumption patterns based on social class.
    Service industries predominate over manufacturing.
    The workforce is feminized.
    Financial markets are globalized.
    – – – – –

    In a Brave New World religion is the worship of the mortal Henry Ford instead of a Supreme Being. He is their equivalent of a god; they worship the letter T in honor of the model T car. They cut the tops of of crucifixes into letter T’s.

    It’s important to have someone to worship. It gives society a feeling that they are living their lives for a purpose that is greater than themselves. The PTB realize that the concept of religion can be manipulated to fit the situation.

    “Our Ford – Our Freud – is all knowing and powerful in the area of psychology they change his name to the name of one of the best known psychiatrists Freud. In the Brave New World the government uses religion as a way to control the people.

    Religion represents different things for different people. In each country, organized religions have changed what they stand for to fit the views of society in that country. The Roman Catholic Church has certain customs and beliefs in Asia, and completely different customs in America. All organized religions change their views to fit the needs of society.

    Huxely’s prediction of the future has proven to be accurate on many counts. Today’s society has an eerie resemblance to that portrayed in Brave New World. The moral and religious fabric of our society is unraveling. Sex as entertainment is commonplace and religious leaders become pop stars using mass media. The role of parents has continued to decline as childrearing responsibilities are happily turned over to MTV, Disney Channel, Sony, Nintendo, and other companies of the entertainment conglomerate. With further scientific progress, parents may soon become only a part of our past. Welcome to the brave new world!

    • “It’s important to have someone to worship. It gives society a feeling that they are living their lives for a purpose that is greater than themselves. The PTB realize that the concept of religion can be manipulated to fit the situation.”

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernest_Becker

      ernest becker termed these “something greaters” immortality projects. they are defense mechanisms against existential anxiety stemming from knowledge of finiteness, mortality. whistles, tunes & graveyards. and ptb’s, all of them, secular and supernatural, both separately & together, have co-conspired with the fearful to gin up every confidence scam in the books (multi-volume set).

      “Becker came to the position that psychological inquiry inevitably comes to a dead end beyond which belief systems must be invoked to satisfy the human psyche. The reach of such a perspective consequently encompasses science and religion, even to what Sam Keen suggests is Becker’s greatest achievement, the creation of the “science of evil”. In formulating his theories Becker drew on the work of Søren Kierkegaard, Sigmund Freud, Wilhelm Reich, Norman O. Brown, Erich Fromm, Hegel, and especially Otto Rank. Becker came to believe that individuals’ characters are essentially formed around the process of denying their own mortality, that this denial is necessary for us to function in the world, and that this character-armor prevents genuine self-knowledge. Much of the evil in the world, he believed, was a consequence of this need to deny death.”

      death fixation, if not cult, & wholesale, commoditized, self-fulfilling prophecies. “science of evil”.

      thomas szasz, one of the good guys, who i’ve mentioned recently, was becker’s mentor.

      a decent documentary, “flight from death” streams online

      http://www.hulu.com/watch/173530

      • Ernest Becker is interesting. He espouses Terror mgmt theory in his books.
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terror_management_theory

        “It has been suggested that culture provides meaning, organization, and a coherent world view that diminishes the psychological terror caused by the knowledge of eventual death. The terror management theory can help to explain why a leader’s popularity grows substantially during times of crisis. An example of this occurred when George W. Bush’s approval rating jumped almost 50 percent following the September 11 attacks in the United States.”

        “TMT posits that religion was created as a means for humans to cope with their own mortality.”

        • See also: Stalin’s chicken.

          People (me included) need a reason to live. Modern society is so skewed from any approximately human scale of things – so twisted, dead-hearted and empty – that many people, those caught up by it, have their desperate, inchoate need for a reason used against them by master manipulators, the ones we call TPTB. It is almost – dare I use the word? – demonic. In no small measure because it appears to operate as a coherent plan that transcends several human lifetimes.

          • a reasoned reason. everybody on the planet has “a reason”.

            watched “stalin’s chicken” on youtube. true metaphor. no one is so strong that they can’t be broken. “don’t be caught,” is the lesson.

          • Ozy,
            There are a few people who cannot be broken.
            We usually find out about them after they’re dead, though. For obvious reasons. 😛

            These days, they probably disappear more often than publicly break.

          • Ozy,
            A thought, then:
            Would Winston Smith (1984) be broken to saddle, or broken?
            I have a guess we’ll agree – I’m just not sure how to “break” enough on the way out, that it matters.

            Proles CHOOSE to be proles, I think.

        • more precisely, tmt is a derivation of becker’s work. i don’t have a problem with disciples trying to move the ball forward, make a career – it helps keep becker, the discoverer/explicator, in view. but the human clenched-grasp condition & its necessarily attendant rhythmic ritual blood sacrifices is the context that will not be jettisoned (at least not in conversations i’m a part of). the 3 who originally proposed it, tmt, are in the documentary i linked.

          most important is that these competing, mass sanctioned, denial-based defensive maneuverings generate the same negative outcomes that the socially unacceptable forms of self-medication do. the only difference is scale; latter is puny next to the massive former. the people who will be wont to emphasize the positives that come out of these systems, defend these systems, like the people who emphasize the positives that come out of war (which is one of the major blowbacks these systems generate), are utilitarians, no matter what other philosophy they claim to embrace. i haven’t read it, but chris hedges book “war is a force that gives us meaning” speaks to this particular “meaning”. if meaning-making is mostly a creative act, then the mostly part needs to be the cart, & the horse that pulls it should have its hooves digging into firm reality. instead, contradictions abound, & carts lead horses to race tracks, glue factories, alpo canneries, etc.

          more importantly, if this is how it is, must be, for most people to get through life, then the idea of progress, via “education”, as is propounded here, lrc/mises, elsewhere, of any kind, let alone getting to anarcho-capitalism, is untenable. because “education” doesn’t touch this. there aren’t many atheists in foxholes, goes the saying. its visceral. biological. its wild animals aware of their fate, unable to cope with that awareness, doing anything & everything to get into their cups (of grog) & stay there. “i don’t have a problem. i can quit anytime i want.” say the small-scale denialists. “we don’t have a problem. we’re on the right side of the angels-angle. look, we have plato’s triangle right here. not to mention piggy’s conch. resistance is futile.” say the borged out immortality projectors.

          refusing to admit of a problem – denial – is to remain lashed to the wheel, whatever the scale. staying clear of the roll is the best resisting individuals can do.

          • [boat trip night]
            Carlito: [voice over] Already I had a bad feeling about the boat trip night as soon as I saw Dave. He was all coked up so much that his nostrils were red and swollen. Bad start Jack.

            [Boarding Kleinfeld’s boat]
            Frankie Taglialucci: What’s with the extra guy?
            [referring to Carlito]
            David Kleinfeld: Carlito, this is one of Tony’s son’s, Frankie.
            Frankie Taglialucci: Nah, it’s Frank.
            David Kleinfeld: Whatever…
            Frankie Taglialucci: NO! What is with the extra guy?
            David Kleinfeld: Oh I’m sorry, is this your boat? Shut the fuck up, if I wanted help, I brought help.

            David Kleinfeld: [brandishing a weapon, and grinning psychotically] How does it feel? Huh?

            Carlito: [voiceover] There is a line you cross, you don’t never come back from. Point of no return. Dave crossed it. I’m here with him. That’s means I am going along for the ride. The whole ride. All the way to the end of the line, wherever that is.

            Carlito: You ripped him off didn’t you?
            David Kleinfeld: What?
            Carlito: Tony Taglialucci. You did take his money?
            David Kleinfeld: [guiltily] Yeah.
            Carlito: Dave, you not a lawyer no more, you a gangster now. On the other side. A whole new ball game. You can’t learn about it in school, and you can’t have a late start.

            remember that scene?

            gangster “now”. now?

            birth is bloody: blood in. everybody’s born into a gang. or interlocking gangs. some keep the original colors. some switch. but for most, the gang, “something bigger”, is the #1, with a bullet, thing.

            blood out, all of it, is the monkey-on-back “preference”, for citizens of all the various & sundry map line exsangui-nations. cuz the territory is just too terrible, too terrifying. better by far bloody beelzebubs, devils known.

            what a racket.

          • Colonel Kerby: You’re not a soldier! I’m a soldier, with the career goal of all soldiers – staying alive in situations where it ain’t all that easy to do! You’re a death-lover. Some sorry son of a bitch has got you convinced that dying for a cause is oh, so romantic. Well, that’s the worst kind of all the kinds of bullshit there is!

            different becker, same subject.

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ob2DIURBXts
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ppMQ2Jvekfg

            one of the few tom-cruise-dies flicks.

  7. Elon Musk’s company lost 2 billion dollars in value, due to bad publicity, it has now recouped all of those losses. A few momentum traders fleeced a large herd of trading sheeple, and everything is rebalanced to the usual SNAFU.

    Elon is currently worth $7.7 Billion American Greenbacks. For arguments sake*, let’s say he got that way by being productive and by exchanging value for value.

    Elon deserves all those dollars because he earned them through Blastar, Zip2, X.com, PayPal, Tesla, SpaceX, and Solar City. His success has made him a part of the evil 1%. It’s time to give back and make things right.

    Yes, It’s Time For The 99% To Give Back To The 1%

    Picture of Lloyd Blankfein, Chairman and CEO of the Goldman Sachs Group.

    It’s time to gore another collectivist sacred cow. This time it’s the popular idea that the successful are obliged to “give back to the community.” This oft-heard claim assumes that the wealth of high-earners is taken away from “the community.”

    Beneath that claim lies the perverted Marxist notion that wealth is accumulated by “exploiting” people, not by creating value–as if Henry Ford was not necessary for Fords to roll off the (non-existent) assembly lines and Steve Jobs was not necessary for iPhones and iPads to spring into existence.

    Let me begin by stripping away the collectivism. “The community” never gave anyone anything. The “community,” the “society,” the “nation” is just a number of interacting individuals, not a mystical entity floating in a cloud above them.

    When some individual person–a parent, a teacher, a customer – ”gives” something to someone else, it is not an act of charity, but a trade for value received in return.

    It was from love – not charity–that your mother fed you, bought clothes for you, paid for your education, gave you presents on your birthday. It was for value received that your teachers worked day in and day out to instruct you. In commercial transactions, customers buy a product not to provide alms to the business, but because they want the product or service – want it for their own personal benefit and enjoyment. And most of the time they get it, which is why they choose to continue patronizing the same businesses.

    All proper human interactions are win-win; that’s why the parties decide to engage in them. It’s not the Henry Fords and Steve Jobs who exploit people. It’s the Al Capones and Bernie Madoffs. Voluntary trade, without force or fraud, is the exchange of value for value, to mutual benefit. In trade, both parties gain.

    Each particular individual in the community who contributed to a man’s rise to wealth was paid at the time–either materially or, as in the case of parents and friends, spiritually. There is no debt to discharge. There is nothing to give back, because there was nothing taken away.

    Well, maybe there is–in the other direction. The shoe is on the other foot. It is “the community” that should give back to the wealth-creators. It turns out that the 99% get far more benefit from the 1% than vice-versa. This is called “the pyramid of ability,”* which was described by the fictional John Galt in Atlas Shrugged:

    “When you live in a rational society, where men are free to trade, you receive an incalculable bonus: the material value of your work is determined not only by your effort, but by the effort of the best productive minds who exist in the world around you.

    When you work in a modern factory, you are paid, not only for your labor, but for all the productive genius which has made that factory possible: for the work of the industrialist who built it, for the work of the investor who saved the money to risk on the untried and the new, for the work of the engineer who designed the machines of which you are pushing the levers, for the work of the inventor who created the product which you spend your time on making . . .

    In proportion to the mental energy he spent, the man who creates a new invention receives but a small percentage of his value in terms of material payment, no matter what fortune he makes, no matter what millions he earns. But the man who works as a janitor in the factory producing that invention, receives an enormous payment in proportion to the mental effort that his job requires of him. And the same is true of all men between, on all levels of ambition and ability. The man at the top of the intellectual pyramid contributes the most to all those below him, but gets nothing except his material payment, receiving no intellectual bonus from others to add to the value of his time.

    The man at the bottom who, left to himself, would starve in his hopeless ineptitude, contributes nothing to those above him, but receives the bonus of all of their brains. Such is the nature of the ‘competition’ between the strong and the weak of the intellect. Such is the pattern of ‘exploitation’ for which you have damned the strong.

    For their enormous contributions to our standard of living, the high-earners should be thanked and publicly honored. We are in their debt.

    Here’s a modest proposal. Anyone who earns a million dollars or more should be exempt from all income taxes. Yes, it’s too little. And the real issue is not financial, but moral. So to augment the tax-exemption, in an annual public ceremony, the year’s top earner should be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.

    Imagine the effect on our culture, particularly on the young, if the kind of fame and adulation bathing Lady Gaga attached to the more notable achievements of say, Warren Buffett*. Or if the moral praise showered on Mother Teresa went to someone like Lloyd Blankfein*, who, in guiding Goldman Sachs toward billions in profits, has done infinitely more for mankind. (Since profit is the market value of the product minus the market value of factors used, profit represents the value created.)

    Instead, we live in a culture where Goldman Sachs is smeared as “a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity.” That’s for the sin of successful investing, channeling savings to their most productive uses, instead of wasting them on government boondoggles like Solyndra and bridges to nowhere.

    There is indeed a vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity: the Internal Revenue Service. And, at a deeper level, it is the monstrous perversion of justice that makes the IRS possible: an envy-ridden moral code that damns success, profit, and earning money in voluntary exchange.

    An end must be put to the inhuman practice of draining the productive to subsidize the unproductive. An end must be put to the primordial notion that one’s life belongs to the tribe, to “the community,” and that the superlative wealth-creators must do penance for the sin of creating value.

    *The notion of whether these men belong in the pyramid of ability needs to be proven or qualified. What percentage of Elon Musk’s wealth comes from giving value? Does any of it come from using the power of the state? What about Lloyd Blankfein of Goldman Sachs. Or Warren Buffet? Does it matter where their wealth comes from. Do they earn their investment premiums, or does some of their wealth also come from the power of the state?

    *What about the Pyramid of the NWO and other Pyramids of Force? How do we determine what percentage of an entrepreneur’s wealth comes from what pyramid?

    • Hi Tor,

      Absolutely agreed on “value for value” – and that no one owes “the community” squat (beyond adherence to the NAP).

      But Musk is no Henry Ford (or Preston Tucker), at least with regard to his car.

      There is something exceptionally obnoxious about a man worth nearly $10 billion dollars forcing people who struggle to keep a roof over their heads to “help” him “sell” $100,000 exotics cars by handing out $15,000 direct per-car subsidies to the extremely affluent people who “buy” his cars.

      Ford, in contrast, built the Model T – a car his workers were able to buy on their own nickel.

      • Top of the Pyramid of Value – Reed Hastings of Netflix?

        Current net worth of $840 million. Reed Hastings earned his net worth through his many business ventures with Pure Software, Netflix, Microsoft, and others.

        He serves on the board of directors of Facebook and Microsoft. He served in the Peace Corps and was a teacher of high school math in Swaziland, Africa for a couple years in the 1980s. He donated a million dollars to California for educational purposes and to make it easier for school boards to increase property taxes.

        Gloomy Sunday – Reed Hastings’ Favorite Movie


        (click [cc] lower right for English subtitles)

        http://thenextweb.com/entrepreneur/2013/09/12/inspiring-entrepreneurs-reed-hastings-netflix/

      • Tor said

        It’s time to gore another collectivist sacred cow. This time it’s the popular idea that the successful are obliged to “give back to the community.” This oft-heard claim assumes that the wealth of high-earners is taken away from “the community.”

        To which Eric replied:

        But Musk is no Henry Ford (or Preston Tucker), at least with regard to his car.

        There is something exceptionally obnoxious about a man worth nearly $10 billion dollars forcing people who struggle to keep a roof over their heads to “help” him “sell” $100,000 exotics cars by handing out $15,000 direct per-car subsidies to the extremely affluent people who “buy” his cars.

        Ford, in contrast, built the Model T – a car his workers were able to buy on their own nickel.

        Yep. This is why I was going to say that I think one could make a case with state-corporatists like Musk that they should be required to “give back to the community” – after all, did they not steal billions from said “community” (i.e., the beleaguered taxpayers who can barely keep roofs over their heads and clothing on their families’ backs) in the form of subsidies (i.e., stolen tax money) to fund their boondoggles? To “give back” to the “community” in this case would be to return what was robbed to those from whom it was robbed.

        Mind you, I’m not necessarily advocating that this be made to happen, as it’s a slippery slope that I can see easily morphing into a 180-degree drop with all sorts of ugly things happening at the bottom. But the idea has some philosophical merit in the abstract.

    • political means vs economic means. that’s the line. see franz oppenheimer. blankfein, goldman, buffet too, are on the pm side of the line. don’t know about musk. pm’s collect rents – not profits. their’s is the pyramid of ponzi.

  8. What caused the fire, I don’t see another vehicle, and the Tesla looks to be intact?

    How did the fire department put the fire out? Was the fire department successful or did they have to wait for the batteries to fully discharge. Where there noxious fumes?

    While fuel tanks and batteries both catch fire they do so for different reasons. Are the reasons batteries catch fire understood?

    The electric cars assume either short distances or dramatic improvements in batteries. From problems with laptop batteries it seems the process of improving the batteries makes them more likely to overheat. So it depends on your optimism on battery improvements. For a city like LA with a smog problem and people who drive short distances, Tesla may be a great idea. I can imagine Shanghai and Tokyo also being possible. If you are stuck in traffic in an electric car, why not have a nice roomy interior. If they got the quick charging working it might make a nice limo for a city with a smog problem.

    This forum post says it produces 1000 amps at 300 volts, It is a 3 phase motor so I think it each phase gets 333 amps. That is a lot of amps at a high voltage. I could not find details of how a Tesla worked so this post is the best I could find. If someone knows more details of how the drivetrain works it would be interesting.

    http://www.teslamotorsclub.com/showthread.php/13668-At-what-voltage-does-the-Model-S-motor-work

    • Hi George,

      I’ve read the driver hit something, perhaps an object in the road – and that the fire began shortly thereafter. If you pop the hood of a Prius or similar hybrid, you will see bright orange high-voltage lines. They’re wrapped in bright orange to reduce the chance of electrocuting someone, such as a fireman working a wreck scene.

      The Tesla’s battery/motor may produce more heat than they typical economy-minded hybrid because it is a performance-minded hybrid.

  9. I see the Tesla as a rich man’s toy; he can leave it in the 10 car garage with his Porsche and Ferrari, and drive it a few miles to the country club to impress the other wealthy Clovers occasionally. I agree the company will probably go belly up in a few years, unless billionaire Musk keeps it going just because he can.
    Give me a Corrola any day, my ’03 get 40+ mpg on the highway and can go forever as long as long as you keep putting gas in the tank.

    • Absolutely, Mike.

      By definition, a $70,000-$100,000 car is a wealthy person’s car. Nothing wrong with that, of course. But if you can afford such a car, fuel economy/driving costs are an abstraction.

      The Tesla is a toy. Which I have no issue with – as such.

      My issue is that we’re being forced to subsidize toys for rich people.

  10. I agree that the fire isn’t really a practical concern for a prospective Tesla owner. But when it comes to negative publicity, reason often doesn’t matter. If irrational fears get stirred up, they can kill a company or product. Think GM’s Corvair and Ralph Nader.

    I have to admin, I smiled when I heard about the fire and the effect on Tesla stock. Elon Musk has been riding high for a long time, but popularity is a fickle thing, and can turn on a dime. Tesla is the ultimate bubble company, and I don’t think they’ll be around in a few years. This could be the beginning of the end, but if not, the end isn’t far away. Companies like this always crash and burn. Especially when the government subsidies eventually run out. Without subsidies, the company would never had been created.

    I’ve got a friend who’s a BIG fan of the Tesla car company. Personally, I don’t get it (although I do like their name and the logo). Until somebody invents a portable nuclear reactor to power the thing, it’ll be about as practical as an AC-only sail fawn.

    • Ditto that, Robert.

      I keep trying to understand the appeal of this car.

      It’s extremely expensive to buy – negating the advantage of low cost to drive.

      It has very good performance – if you don’t use it much. Drive it at all aggressively – and the range plummets. So, for all practical purposes, you’re forced to drive this $70-$100k car as if it were a Geo Metro.

      I think the appeal is a kind of eco-rich-person snobbery. As in, “look at me! I am against global warming and Big Oil but still sexy because I don’t drive a Prius.”

      Something like that…

      • EXACTLY! When I lived in Aspen I knew of at least 2 of the roadsters that were driven around town, and they always attracted a crowd. Fun toys for guilt-ridden Hollywood types.

      • The grand culture heist:

        1 Defense Cartel takes over broadcasting:
        1986 – GE buys NBC
        1995 – Westinghouse buys CBS

        Consider Saturday Night Live – Before and After the Takeover

        All the professional writers were fired. Corporate suit wearing company men determined show content and held creative control positions. Every show began with political humor, and these were always the biggest skits.
        Now NBC has expanded to Daily Show, Colbert, Comedy Central. Jay Leno. State crony considerations trump quality authentic content every time.

        All humor became self-debasement. Men played women. Women and other state chosen groups were shown to be in power. Gays were the alpha group. Great Britain’s ethos made manifest in America.

        The joke was, you’re a moron. You have no idea how anything works. You’re a powerless serf, why not laugh at yourself.

        The old hedonistic and materialist freedom marketing was discontinued. Now fear was being sold. Security and surveillance was sold. Safety was sold. Low prices were sold. Altruism was sold. Low environmental damage was sold.

        A military take over of popular culture has occurred. Consumer markets have been occupied under martial law. There’s been over 20 years of disinformation and dumbing down.

        The older generation and the middle aged generation are irrevocably split. The younger generations don’t even know what has been taken from them, and how their lives have been artificially diminished.

        Pop.Culture.Saturday.Night.Live.in.the.90s
        http://video.yandex.ru/users/alyesina/view/2307/#

        • Tor, you’re exactly right on just about Every count!

          I noticed it!

          (Yeesh, I guess I’m an old man to have noticed it back in the day. And I’m not talking 1990’s. The Sum funny thing is: I don’t feel any different than any young man does now,.. well, except for being old.)

          I imagine most preferred not to notice the shenanigans going on now.

          RE: “1986 – GE buys NBC”

          Gawd, no wonder I didn’t want to, ‘Opt In’ back in those days.

          RE: “A military take over of popular culture has occurred.”

          Is that bizarre, or what? If only the Jr. High School kids knew they were being played for suckers, eh?
          The adults have become zombies, what do they know?

          A person really has to take all you wrote apart and digest it bit by bit, “Consumer markets have been occupied under martial law.”

          It’s like, WTF? That’s so hard for people to accept, that they’ve been played for suckers.

          I’d like to make a correction, or maybe it’s off by twenty years (?) when you say, “There’s been over 20 years of disinformation and dumbing down.”

          Yeah, it’s been going on longer than that.

          The only good thing I can think of at the moment is: At least I know. At least I know I’m being played for a sucker. And I know who the MF’er’s are.
          Knowing makes a world of difference, IMHO.
          It may not change the outcome, but it makes a world of difference.

          Fuck the NWO! They can kiss my ass!

          • There was a collapse of certainty and traditional truths in America during the 1960s and 1970s. This is America’s untold story. I could not have witnessed all the things that are brought out here, nor could anyone. For much of this was hidden, and that is the first point.

            Many people have seen this, but much of it is not remembered. It is discouraged from being thought about, since it is a reality inconvenient to those who orchestrate events.

            Let us remind ourselves of truths we should not forget. The Cold War was the backdrop for the time of confusion. Morality and behavior were being undermined from several fronts. Honesty and truth were become shaky, uncertain, and vulnerable.

            With the rise of the power of huge corporations and cartels came an erosion of values and a capturing of truth that made it the servant of the hidden agenda. Truth and honesty were the first of life’s pillars to be invaded and occupied.

            It was gradual, secretive, largely undetected, only a handful of astute observers were not fooled and tried in vain to warn the nation.

            Americans were caught between opposing evils of confusion and Social instability caused by eroding standards, values, and fiat money. One faced either being assimilated by corporate culture or clinging to traditional ways, whose credibility and protection were in constant decline.

            There were unceasing assaults from institutions and collectives from all over the world, and the masses lost their independent minds and wealth, and became precariously dependent on the social order to maintain their standards of living.

            There remained an astounding era of unity and enthusiasm during the Kennedy years, where corporate culture was briefly subsumed under lofty ideals, which included both technological advance—and thus harnessed corporate energy in a positive direction—and social and intercultural advance, personified by the Peace Corps.

            Fragmentation and social instability were forgotten as America again believed it was involved in higher causes emanating out of the times that seemed powerful enough to propel everyone into the future even though we remained fragmented we somehow still worked together for a common cause.

            The mass trauma of the orchestrated Kennedy murders and other events by unseen powers was a crushing blow and the floor fell out from beneath aspirations of most Americans, they became empty, directionless, and more vulnerable than ever before.

            Never one to waste a crisis, Johnson escalated the wars and funding for them. He made outlandish promises and quickly broke them all. The underclasses erupted in riots.

            America was in the thralls of yet another coup; another massive cover-up; and another Big Lie. The tag-teaming Democrats and Republicans grabbed more and more power.

            Merely in order to live, formerly proud Americans now begged for official permission or seals of approval and certificates merely to make a living.

            Power was gathered into fewer and fewer hands, great centralized power that was used to influence beliefs, ideals, and the psychology of the masses.

            Increasing without constraint it became more severe, pervasive, and threatening to the point of outright lunacy. A broad-based revolt finally began during the blatant deceptions and obvious manipulations that were evident under George W. Bush.

            Even this awakening was short lived, Bush would shortly be outdone by Barack Obama, the greatest most Borg-like tyrant ever conceived and implemented. Resistance is Futile he casually announces. All the world will be Obama Borg. All will be assimiltated, he confidently assures ever last human being.

          • That’s a perfect synopsis of American culture and the history of the last fifty or so years,, Tor.

            “ever(y) last human being.”

            I won’t go. I won’t.
            Fuck them! And the cherry assed boat they float.
            I won’t go. I won’t.

            I am the Kulak. I am the Iraqi. I am the Native American Indian. I am the Outlaw Josy Wales. I am the American Rothbardian.

            Fuck them! And the cherry assed boat they float.
            I won’t go. I won’t.

          • @Tor – Funny how history seems to begin near our birth year. Atlas Shrugged, which did a great job of describing the people and issues you list as the destruction of the American Way, was started in 1945. And only published in book form in 1957.

          • Garysco wrote, “Funny how history seems to begin near our birth year.”

            Nope, seems to me the same shit’s been going on since probably the beginning.

            But for when the recent twist began consider this, in the old west days, I imagine you read this one:

            The Culture of Violence in the American West: Myth versus Reality

            “The change from militia to a standing army took place in the American West immediately upon the conclusion of the War Between the States. The result, say Anderson and McChesney, was that white settlers and railroad corporations were able to socialize the costs of stealing Indian lands by using violence supplied by the U.S. Army. On their own, they were much more likely to negotiate peacefully. Thus, “raid” replaced “trade” in white–Indian relations. Congress even voted in 1871 not to ratify any more Indian treaties, effectively announcing that it no longer sought peaceful relations with the Plains Indians”…

            http://www.independent.org/publications/tir/article.asp?a=803

            • Indeed.

              Read up on the Federalists (in particular the machinations of A. Hamilton) and the way they simply took over from the British.

              The average American soldier who fought against the British fought for nothing. He exchanged one bit in his mouth for another, that’s all.

              The Federalists consolidated power in their new “Con”stitution – and imposed more severe and pervasive taxes than any the colonists suffered under parliament.

              Limitless federal power to tax and control everyone was enshrined in 1787.

              And made explicit in 1865.

          • @RothbardianamericanHelot – I agree with you that it is old news to those who look into such things. But to most, anything that happened 10 years and further back from their birth is ancient history and has no direct effect on what they perceive as current events.

          • took over

            and that was no mere improvisation. so “it all began with’s” in front of that (not to mention behind that) are really just continuations.

          • RE: History starting when we are born: common American conceit. Common HUMAN conceit. 😉

            That is degradation to an animal state, as well: it invalidates anything but “ME,” making the Heroic all the more unfathomable (and thus, unattainable.)

            Troy has an excellent exchange, actually, on that very thing:

            Messenger Boy:
            The Thessalonian you’re fighting, he’s the biggest man I’ve ever seen. I wouldn’t want to fight him.

            Achilles:
            That is why no one will remember your name.

            People want to be remembered – but the heights one must reach, they’re just TOO MUCH… So we have “hero cops” and Hero Fire Fighters and “Teacher stops a food fight” “heros” until… the word has been stripped fo all meaning, and it’s heroic to remember you should poop in the toilet instead of your pants – AFTER you poop in your pants…

            I think it’s time for some of the ol Ultraviolence, myself. We’re being turned into Clockwork Oranges, by social design (no actual MKULTRA/Monarch/Et Al programming required, the faulty wiring is being inculcated from birth.)

            Methinks there’s a tree needs watering. I’m starting to push the issue with more people… Keep an eye on Boston. Might be interesting times soon.

            Also thinking – maybe we should go looking for some places with lax laws on medical research, and pre-empt the deisgns of those who would rule by direct perversion of their possible assaults on human dignity?
            For instance, if Nanotech is capable of controlling serotonin in the brain – making operant conditioning simple and easy, and the nanites are delivered via “immunizations”…
            Maybe some South American country would see it as promising research to make counter-nanites? Something to prevent them from being taken over a la “invasion of the body snatchers” or such?

        • Oh, Garysco. Those numbers are some scary shit.
          Only, they don’t count the people who are working too hard making income or living life that they don’t have time to make those polls.

          …A lot of polls are like that. …They leave out the productive members. the ones who don’t have time to take those polls. Most often, they’re asleep when that damn telephone rings.

          Those pools are super skewed to favor the not-working-class.

          Every time I see a poll that samples say, 947 people, I wonder, how many people didn’t answer their poll, 2,000? Because they were asleep, or eating dinner, or living life?

          Yeah, the pol makers never reveal that data.

          • @DS – I haven’t researched YouTube for any things that matter. I can only hope to find a few with numberss like that. Like your last response to Tor, the process is hiding in plain sight, we just don’t see it unless someone wakes us up. Let me tell a personal story:

            In 1972 I graduated the Sheriff’s academy, and was sent to work at the county jail. My training officer warned me that a large percentage of the 2000+ inmates will try to run every type of con on me, so I should beware. Six months later I realized that I had still been pulled on like a sock many times by those guys. That lesson has served me well and stuck with me ever since.

          • That’s Not even funny, Garysco.
            You kind of sound like my ex-best friend, the one I was warned about was a narc.
            I didn’t believe it at the time.
            Then one day I saw Marijuana Inc. .. And there he was.

            I so wanted to throw up,… just like now.

            I’ve been arrested twice.
            Once for failure to pay a fine.
            And once for driving while following the depressions worn out in the road same as 10,000 other people did.

            Cops are bastards, I’m not sure they can ever shake that coat.
            Maybe if they are lucky?
            …Do you feel lucky? …Well, do ya?

            …Then too, I suppose it’s possible they could give up the whole rigmarole and embrace Rothbardianism.

            Well, do ya?

            Seeing as how you’re here, I suppose you do.
            …But then again, cops are paid to lie.

          • @DS- See how good it works? You will never know.

            paranoia strikes deep
            into your life it will creep
            it starts when you are always afraid
            step out of line
            the man come and take you away

            Not exactly Sun Tzu, but at my age it is better then getting a bald cut, wearing dark military sunglasses and taking steroids.

          • errt. Wrong answer, Garysco, when we know you’re all guilty,
            It’s not about paranoia if you really Are all out to get us. Each and every one.

            …You had an out.
            Why didn’t you take it, copper?

            Paranoia works two ways.
            Didn’t you read the latest from Will Grigg?

          • @DS – At this point I must tell a recent story. While driving though Yosemite a young buck park ranger follows me for about 2 miles (while running my plate etc. I am sure) then pulls me over. He comes up on my Toyota like it was a gangsta car, and asks for my papers. As I hand him the state issued OK’s to be alive and navigate the highways I asked why he pulled me over. He said it was for no front license plate. With a WTF look on my old ass face I state “that is pretty serious violation, I didn’t know National Park Rangers were targeting California registration infractions. Now what is the real reason you pulled me over?” He stammered back “ah,..ah… because you don’t have a front plate.” I got the dip-shit so flustered that he only asked if I had any guns in the car as he handed me back my paperwork. I said sure, and showed him my Colt 1911 .45. “Ta ta” as I drove away.

            To answer you, no, I am disgusted at what the profession has turned into. Rothbard is OK but there are some flaws in his system.

            • Morning, Gary –

              Here’s my 50 on cops today:

              I believe the system is now such that it attracts almost exclusively low-intelligence order-barkers. And those are the better class of modern cop.

              I cannot conceive of a psychologically normal, bright, empathetic person remaining a cop – given what cops do these days, as a matter of routine. I try to put myself in that position. I cannot. I simply literally, cannot imagine being any part of a probable cause-free “checkpoint.” Of threatening another adult over his or her seatbelt non-usage. Let alone kicking in some poor hippie’s door and carting him off to pound-me-in-the-ass prison because he had (or made or sold) “illegal” drugs. I’d sicken myself; lose all self-respect.

              There are other ways to make a living. No one is forced to do this sort of “work.”

              It’s gotten completely out of hand. I am disgusted and enraged on a daily basis by the outrages that reach our awareness – which are surely a small fraction of the total.

              The summary execution of an unarmed woman with a child in her car, over what amounted to a traffic violation. The cops feted as heroes.

              It’s insane – and it’s sick.

          • Garysco wrote, “Rothbard is OK but there are some flaws in his system.”

            Nahh, the only flaw is in your lack of understanding Rothbard.

          • @Eric – It is a combination of orchestrated cause and effects on the under 40 population. The current accelerated takeover kicked-off at the 9-11 event. At the time I marveled that Bush & Co. named the dead perpetrators and their plans within 72 hours of the event, while all the evidence needed was buried in rubble. Having been a detective I saw that as a pure set-up bullshit impossibility. I also marvel at how DHS, which is a huge lumbering bureaucracy, was put into place in no time. As if the plans were already on the shelf waiting for an event. Over the last 10 years all police have been taught and indoctrinated by the DHS programs, which are anti-Constitution and Bill of Rights.

            Like I posted yesterday :

            The sheep have been taught to willingly shelter-in place and beg for more police abuse. And the cops are even worse. They think they are living some sort of a Jack Bower saving America script, and proud of it. The new badged hero’s can crash their cars and shoot unarmed 30 year old women to death, no matter what collateral damage.

            That is why I believe the various police departments’ management must be held to account for producing these programmed robots. But alas the sheep are too scared to even ask please.

          • In a long lost time one could aspire to be something like Andy Taylor or even Kojak. Even Barney Miller or Fish… but today’s cops are so far from the yesterday’s TV cops, yesterday’s idealized version of a cop would be laughed off the television set.

            At this point Barney Fife would be an improvement. At least he only suffered from a naive belief system.

        • This is explicitly why Hunter Thompson stuck a gun in his own mouth and put an end to it all.

          He knew the dream was over – if it had ever begun.

          And that the nightmare was almost upon us.

          • the dream never was anything but that – a dream. propaganda & stockholm leverage “dreaming”, that is. whole lotta’ patty hearstin’ goin’ on.

            that some entire lifespans came & went within bits of the slow-encroach of niemöller’s serpent, first striking from coil, viper-style, then unspooling/respooling into ever larger loops, to constrict the life out of ever larger prey herds… helped with the ongoing, inter-generational sale. incrementalism.

            the part of ht’s note that jumped out at me: “no more fun”.

            the first rule of fight club (life) is unwritten. “enjoy yourself”. having fun is part of that. of course, if your fun is all tied up in a “dream” concocted for your consumption by blackhats, you may have a problem. and the older you get, the bigger problem you may have. ht was 67. and he rode hard, too.

            • True, Ozzy.

              But, it was a gentler dream not so very long ago.

              Anyone who is old enough to remember the world as it was as recently as 20 or so years ago will affirm this. It had its brutalities, its stupidities. Certainly. But if you could transport yourself back in time to say 1980 – and were to tell the people of that time that the president of the United States would openly defend carting people – US citizens – off to prison on nothing more than his say-so, to be held indefinitely, tortured (with torture also explicit state policy)… that it would be routine for cops to brutally assault – even kill – people and then bleat “officer safety!” … that whole cities would be “locked down” with stormtroopers frog-marching ordinary citizen out of their own homes at gunpoint without even the pretense of any suspicion they’d committed so much as jaywalking… that the federal government would assert its right to eavesdrop on and record every phone conversation, intercept and read/record the contents of every single person’s mail… well, those 1980s people would have looked upon you as a babbling lunatic and had you put into a rubber room.

          • Going back 20,30,40 years ago and predicting our current state would get one branded a kook. Yet people did predict our current state and they are still considered kooks today.

            The way people adjust themselves to the present is just staggering to me. It wasn’t just ‘some-guy’ kooks either. Ron Paul made his predictions on the floor of congress 10 or so years ago. But he’s still a kook.

            Americans rather listen to the same hucksters that conned them before than to listen to someone who has been correct. Not just Ron Paul, anyone who’s been right. Look as recently as 2008. Everyone who predicted the crash is still a kook. The people who were supposedly blindsided by it are still officials, experts, and so on.

            It’s really so very messed up.

        • Tor Minotaur, you’ve helped me understand why I don’t watch ANY television (it’s not so much that it has gotten to be boring, or puerile, it is actually DISTURBING). It’s taken me a while longer to give up most published print media, but I can hardly read a magazine now without wanting to shout out in rage. I’ve been getting more and more bothered by something someone might think to be “safe” (yeah, but just as “safe” as someone might think “Popular Mechanics” would be)–“National Geographic”. They have been way too much a supporter of global warming, peak oil, and all the other environmental stuff. That’s been clearly obvious for quite some time, now. But today I got some links to some on-line material in an e-mail from them (they’re trying to get me to resubscribe to them and I won’t), that was all about diversity and multi-multi-multi mixed races and nationalities and how bad and divisive the enslaving white man is and how racist America is compared to the rest of the world (all phenomenally NOT true) and it finally hit me, “National Geographic” is, duh, a supporter of the “New World Order”. I’m amazed how long it took me to see how obvious that was (even their name says it if one can only translate the Newspeak of it), but I realize that sometimes we just don’t quite put it all together. But eventually we do. Some of us, anyway. Thank you for your perspectives and awareness!

          • @Tomoz – Follow the money:

            The National Geographic Education Foundation was founded in 1988 on the occasion of National Geographic’s centennial. Its mission is to promote and advance geographic education. Housed in the Education Program’s Division of National Geographic, the Foundation oversees endowments that totaled more than $150 million in 2011. The income from these endowments is used to support professional development for teachers, the creation and dissemination of educational resources, activities to boost public awareness of the importance of geography education, and advocacy for public policies that will lead to improvements in geography education. Since its founding in 1988, the Foundation has awarded more than $80 million in grants.

            That is 150 million from who and what entities exactly? Not stated. Your tax dollars at work is my suspicion.

          • Garysco–There wasn’t a “reply” button on your post, so I went up one level and clicked on the reply button on my own post.

            You bet–follow the money! I hadn’t known that about the National Geographic Education Foundation, thank you. That is all quite telling I think. I searched for their site after reading your post and it creeped me out. It seems that the magazine (that my grandparent’s generation loved and kept every issue of) is now another piece of the propaganda and indoctrination arms of “The Ministry of Truth”. Well, good to know!

          • “why I don’t watch ANY television (it’s not so much that it has gotten to be boring, or puerile, it is actually DISTURBING)”

            Me too, Tomoz. On the chance that it could just be me (since my wife is 2 years younger than I am and is still an avid TV watcher), I viewed some old TV shows on youtube. Nope, it isn’t just me and it isn’t a recent change in programming. The old B&W TV shows were also laden with propaganda and disturbing imagery.

            Even as a kid, I preferred reading novels and history to watching TV, so I don’t miss that medium very much since giving it up in the late ’90s. Newspapers and magazines are a wasteland, as is broadcast radio. That leaves films, many of which are also unwatchable, but there is an enjoyable exception here and there.

            • Ditto, Ed.

              Settling into a good book beats hell out of TeeVee, radio… any form of mass media these days. Even when the subject is loathsome (as in the case of the biography of Hamilton I am reading at the moment) if the material is well-written, it’s one of my favorite ways to forget the Idiocracy of modern life.

      • I was just wondering Eric why you care about why others drive this car? You keep bringing up cost to drive etc. Who cares? Who cares that you have to plug it in every 100 to 200 miles? I guess 10s of thousands of owners are getting by. If you bring up waste wile driving then why not bring up the guy that drives the $45,000 pickup truck to work when all he carries in the truck is his lunch bag? The $70,000 car probably costs less per mile to drive. At least with enough of those cars out there it saves us millions of gallons of fuel nationwide which makes fuel prices for you and me to go down . Then if they are charged during off peak hours it costs our society very little when much of the electricity is wasted anyway on idling power plants.

        • Poor ol’ Clover!

          I don’t care at all about why others drive a Tesla. I just object to subsidizing the purchase thereof.

          PS: This is your last free waste of our space. Future posts from you will incur a charge of 50 cents each before they’re allowed through.

          It’s time for Clover to pay his fair share!

          • I’m pretty sure “Clover” is a lost cause. I can’t find a single post of hers that contains anything other than non sequiturs and straw men. I can only conclude that she is a complete moron, or she is being paid to post here. Actually, both may be true!

      • I think the appeal is a kind of eco-rich-person snobbery. As in, “look at me! I am against global warming and Big Oil but still sexy because I don’t drive a Prius.”

        Something like that…

        I’ll no doubt get flamed for saying this (so be it), but my gut feeling tells me that the biggest customer base (or potential customer base) for this electric Edsel consists of politically liberal upper middle class/upper class women who 1) don’t know the first thing about mechanics, chemistry, physics, economics, or any form of hard science and don’t care to learn and 2) have drunk so deeply of the “green”/”save the planet” pseudo-scientific nonsense that they’re beyond any form reason.

        I simply cannot think of any other demographic group that this farce would appeal to in any significant numbers that would make it a viable product, even with heavy subsidies from the State.

      • Dear eric,

        FYI:

        Wednesday, Nov 13, 2013 02:51 AM TST
        George Clooney bad-mouths Tesla
        “Why am I always stuck on the side of the f*cking road?” the actor asked
        Lindsay Abrams

        http://www.salon.com/2013/11/12/george_clooney_bad_mouths_tesla/?source=newsletter

        I had a Tesla. I was one of the first cats with a Tesla. I think I was, like, number five on the list. But I’m telling you, I’ve been on the side of the road a while in that thing. And I said to them, “Look, guys, why am I always stuck on the side of the fucking road? Make it work, one way or another.”

        • Morning, Bevin!

          Thanks for the Clooney nugget!

          There is something delicious about picturing a smug millionaire actor in his six-figure greenie-weenie car waiting by the side of the freeway for a tow truck…

          • Dear eric,

            I figured you’d get a kick out of that!

            Clooney definitely fits your description alright. LOL!

            He has some redeeming virtues I suppose. He does oppose US military adventurism abroad.

            But definitely a “limousine liberal” or “Communist with a fur coat” as they used to say in Europe.

            • Morning, Bevin!

              This is just speculation, but:

              Clooney is a guy who has always been wealthy (his family is wealthy). Extremely wealthy. So wealthy that he doesn’t have to think about money – about the cost of things – and assumes others have the same luxury.

              It’s not fundamentally dissimilar from someone who is comfortably middle class not giving much thought to buying a cup of Starbucks coffee. The cost is trivial relative to their means. Yet, for the poor or even working class person, going to Starbucks is regarded as an extravagance. And if the middle class person cavalierly lectured the poor/working class person about the merits of Stabucks coffee vs. instant coffee, the poor/working class person would rightly be incensed.

              I see this – but Clooney apparently does not.

          • Dear Eric,

            Clooney is probably far from the worst of the type.

            The type that really gets me is the plutocratic pols who play the egalitarian “Just plain folks” game.

            Was it Romney who went on an on about buying his shirts at Costco for 18 dollars a pop?

            I’m wondering whether those shirts, of which I recently bought two, one white, one pale blue at Costco in Taipei, are still sitting in his closet unopened, having served their purpose as props in his “man of the people” show.

            We the Sheeple have only ourselves to blame. We are stupid enough to buy into “democracy” and the Myth of Authority. We have never gotten our own stories straight.

            We claim to demand equality, yet fawn over royalty. We attempt to reconcile the flagrant contradiction by fawning over Diana, as “The Peoples Princess.”

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