And Then They Came For the Big Rigs

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

No one appears to have noticed this yet. But they will.

Not on the road – or at the car dealership.

At the supermarket.   

For openers.

Uncle is “proposing” a “program” (the soft-sell language hides the reality of regulations issued by an unelected bureaucracy – EPA – which will be extremely mandatory) in order to “Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Improve Fuel Efficiency (their exact language, in the EPA’s pretentious Federal All Caps Style)  of “Medium, and Heavy Duty Vehicles.”

See here.

Translation – sans the All Caps pretentiousness –  commercial vehicles such as big rigs that pull freight, cement trucks, flatbeds/rollbacks, busses, 2500 and 3500 series work trucks and so on will have both fuel economy mandatory minimums imposed on them and be subjected to new “emissions” regulations that are based on the idea that carbon dioxide is a pollutant. trucks-2

Because “climate change.”

This will be der untergang of whatever’s left of the already eviscerated economy. I’ll explain.

Until now, vehicles over a certain gross weight – 2500 series and larger – were exempted from federal Corporate Average Fuel Efficiency (CAFE) mandatory minimums (currently set at 35.5 MPG on average for passenger cars) on the basis of the fact that heavy duty trucks are heavy and must be so in order to be fit for any sort of duty. 

Which means bigger engines, more fuel used. You can have heavy-duty capability or you can have high fuel economy.

You cannot have both in the same package.

If you need a vehicle capable of pulling say a 15,000 pound trailer, a turbo four cylinder in a unibody chassis connected to a CVT transmission isn’t going to cut it.truck-emissions

For serious work, you need beefy steel frames – and big V8s and diesels. But expecting them to be fuel-sippy is like expecting a 300 pound NFL lineman to subsist on a 2,000 calorie per day diet and still be capable of functioning as an NFL lineman.

But this is precisely what Uncle expects.

Or rather, is going to demand – at gunpoint.pyramid

Remember, this is not a “program.” It is a regulatory fatwa – with the weight of Uncle behind it.

And it will not be Uncle who pays the freight (literally).

It will be us – as always.

We – who had no opportunity to vote for (much less against) any of this.

EPA – a federal bureaucracy peopled by unelected apparatchiks who have never received anyone’s consent to be governed – simply decided that the time has come for “…a strong and comprehensive heavy-duty national program (there’s that word again) designed to address the urgent and closely intertwined challenges of dependence on oil, energy security and global climate change.” (Italics added.)


Why is how much fuel we buy and burn  – with our money – their business? And “Global climate change”?

Who says?

Why, they do! Fuhrer befehl, wir folgen! befehl

The arrogance is luminous.         

We are looking at a Mike Tyson in his prime one-two punch here. It’s not merely that they will be imposing fuel efficiency regs on heavy trucks – an engineering oxymoron akin to our NFL lineman on a 2,000 calorie a day diet – but also that they will be imposing an “emissions” mandate that cannot be complied with by mechanical/catalytic means.

This is critical to understand.

The EPA knows most people – who know nil about chemistry or physics – will not understand. They will only hear about “global climate change,” which they’ve (mostly) bought into – not knowing just how much they have bought into.

I’ll explain.

It is one thing to make an engine run more cleanly; to reduce its emissions output. That is, emissions properly defined. As they used to be defined: The byproducts of incomplete or inefficient combustion. Things like unburned hydrocarbons (fuel vapors, basically) and oxides of nitrogen which are reactive and cause legitimate/actual problems such as air pollution and acid rain. These emissions can be reduced to practically nil (as they have been) by extremely precise fuel metering and optimization of air-fuel ratios so that the engine burns the fuel more efficiently and by after-treatment of the exhaust gasses, as by catalytic converters.uncle-pic

You can still have large – and powerful – engines. In big – and heavy – vehicles.

But the only way to reduce greenhouse gas “emissions” is to reduce the quantity of fuel burned – because a given volume of gas or diesel, when burned, will result in a given volume of gas. You can scrub the gas so as to render it no-longer-noxious. But you can’t reduce the quantity produced – a key difference that Uncle is well-ware of.

And counting on the masses to not be aware of, until it is a done deal and too late to do anything about it.

No matter how “clean” a vehicle is in terms of noxious/reactive gasses such as HC and NOx, if it produces “x” volume of “greenhouse” gasses – which means carbon dioxide, which is an inert/non-reactive gas as far as all the former criteria – then Uncle is aggrieved.

Put plainly, Uncle is targeting heavy-duty vehicles for termination.

Two things are going to happen.stossel

First, these vehicles are going to become much more expensive to buy and to operate as the compliance costs of Uncle’s fatwas filter down the food chain. We got a taste of this a few years ago when Ultra Low Sulfur Fuel and particulate emissions regs were imposed on big rigs. You may have noticed the price of a steak (and many other things) went up.

A lot.

Truckers paid top dollar to buy Freightliners and Volvos and Macks built pre-fatwa (and so not yet encumbered by the expensive new  “emissions” gear, which also had the effect of reducing their fuel economy as a side benefit). But the supply of the pre-fatwa engines was finite and as the new, Uncle compliant rigs – and engines and fuel – supplanted the older equipment, costs increased. Everyone was forced to pay more. The truckers for their trucks and fuel; us for the stuff those more expensive and less-efficient trucks brought to the stores.heretic

But the new fatwas are going to do more than just double down on things.

They may well end things.

As explained above, it is one thing to make an engine run more cleanly. This is a doable (though not cost-free) thing. But to reduce “greenhouse gas emissions” (as they’re politically styled) will not be possible without making heavy-duty rigs (or their engines) smaller and so, less heavy duty.

And much more expensive to buy and operate.

You cannot “clean” C02. All you can do is produce less of it. And that’s possible – given any known technology, at least – only by  burning less fuel.

This is engineering and chemistry.     

Politics, actually.strong

Because “climate change” is a shibboleth, a con. A trump card brought out by the same people who’ve been striving for years to resurrect the feudal/company town model that briefly went away in the United States, as the pyramid got wider in the hips and material prosperity for working and middle class people abounded.

That resulted in a content populace that had no use for authoritarian socialism (or authoritarian fascism) and the “leaders” and their “programs” that come with either.

Socialism (and fascism) didn’t sell. Enter environmentalism.deniers

Same con – new label.

If you are skeptical, consider: Will the few at the top of the newly pointy pyramid be materially diminished by these “programs.” Will the  “urgent and closely intertwined challenges of dependence on oil, energy security and global climate change” affect them in any way whatsoever?

The question hardly needs to be asked.

We all know the answer.

The real question is: Why do we tolerate it? depends on you to keep the wheels turning! Clovers hate us!

Goo-guhl blackballed us!

GM excommunicated us!

Will you help us?

Our donate button is here.

 If you prefer not to use PayPal, our mailing address is:

721 Hummingbird Lane SE
Copper Hill, VA 24079

EPautos stickers – new design, larger and magnetic! – are free to those who send in $10 or more to support the site.epautoslogo



  1. Eric,

    I’m late to the party here, but I have a question: how can CAFE standards be imposed on work trucks, especially big rigs? Unlike cars and light trucks, big rigs are customizable; they have equipment choices that are not available to other vehicles. You can get different engines, transmissions, differentials, and so on in a big rig. IOW, one Peterbilt can be substantially different from the next one of the same model. It’s possible to equip one so it’s optimized for lots of mountain work, while it’s also possible to also customize it for mostly flat land work. Their engines, transmissions, and gear ratios will be so different that their respective fuel economy will also be different. That is, the two trucks will be so different that a comparison isn’t feasible. How do they plan to do this harebrained scheme?

  2. Too all Viewers, Readers and Car Lovers..

    Have you enjoyed these articles, reviews and wild political persuasions??
    Did you have any discussions that were meaningful?
    Got to make all those intelligent commentaries that you had to get of your chest?
    Did you get them all out for the others to see, read and receive discerning repercussions?
    Any sagacious feedback that was insightful?
    Was it able to made you rethink your thoughts, position shifted?
    Did you get to consider the obverse side of coin or position?
    If you got some some of those above or any news or input that was informative- got to put your “two cent’ worth” in or beneficiary of response to your comments- thats what its is all about.
    Then this site is working for you.
    Personally, I could use more of the auto articles and less on the political ideology.
    But, It has got to have something for everyone ….but it is not free.
    Sadly, it is getting time to pay the courier, and donate for this month expenses. This month is already more than 2/3 gone and the kitty is still morn than 1/3 empty. We do not want them to locked the doors and kill the lights.
    Please, Do so on behalf of every reader and to keep the site up and running.
    Donate Now! ……..Eliminate the Red..
    Thanks, Everyone in advance.

  3. These obscene environmental fatwas have to be stopped.

    First they destroyed the automobile diesel engine by attacking Volkswagen. Now they want to put the heavy truckers out of business. Are they going to require all store deliveries to be made by pick-up trucks? Or more to the point: Are they going to require these deliveries to be made by Chevy Volts?

    After all, who can blame them for wanting to support another government entity.

    Environmental Protection Agency? No way!

    It’s really Economic Prevention Agency.

  4. Americans let this stuff happen because they have their head in the sand. They are conditioned to just bend over and take it. They don’t have the brain cells to comprehend how screwed they are. They just follow the rest of the lemmings off a cliff. Government is a reflection of the people. You reap what you sew. Benjamin Franklin was asked what type of government was coming out of the Constitutional Convention and he said very ominously “A Republic if you can keep it.”

    • That’s what happens when you have a communal state-controlled “education” monopoly to which 98% of people send their kids. A defacto propaganda ministry. The gov’t tells them what to believe…..then the believers “pick the government” that represents “their beliefs”. Introduce some simple logic into the equation to show the fallacies of those instilled beliefs, and they look at you like you are crazy, because it’s not about logic or facts, it’s about repetition and majorities. It doesn’t matter that their “science” is perpetually changing and preaching diametric opposites from decade to decade. What was “fact” yesterday, is ridiculed today, as new contradictory “facts” are handed down (“facts” which jibe with whatever agenda is being promoted), and everyone just sheds the old “facts” and accepts the new, and will do the same the next time they change, also, because “science”.

  5. Did it ever occur to those numbnutzes that fuel economy is a huge factor in heavy truck design? Even a difference of 0.5 mpg can make or break the profitability of a small fleet of delivery trucks. As for emissions – it’ll just drive more trucking to Mexico-based firms, who by definition don’t need no ‘steenkin’ carbon credits!

  6. This country — actually, the whole First World, is utterly insane. I want out. I will get out at some point within the next few years. If I were to tolerate all of this nonsense, I would really have no right to complain. I’ve seen this since my days as a child in pooblik school, which is really just a microcosm of the liberal world at-large. I freed myself from that pooblik school as soon as I could; it is now time to do the same in the larger sense.

    It’s really no different than Nazi Germany. You stay, and give your assent by your participation and subjugation, or you leave, even if the alternatives aren’t perfect. It’s to the point where just about anywhere in the world [outside of “the first world”] one can have more personal freedom and privacy than here.

    And it’s not just government coercion. EVERY institution of our society is SICK, and has been infected with utter dysfunction, absurdity and nonsense. Every business….even to their own detriment (Like GM’s President of Diversity).

    The Western world is imploding.

    • Nunzio,

      “It’s really no different than Nazi Germany”

      There are a few minor differences. Topf & Sons didn’t have SecurIDy™, like our Matthews International. The Nazi method of paper records at the camps is really no match to the M-pyre™2.0 Advanced PLC Control system.

      “This comprehensive system tracks from receiving a body to return the cremated remains (up to 999 handling stages), all wireless through our powerful handheld into your office computer.”

      No more worries for the FEMA camp directors.

      Ironically, modern day Germany has more regulations on human incineration than the US EPA.

      When you, or anyone, bring up GM Nunzio, I think of Flint, Michigan. What the Nazis did to Lidice, Czechoslovakia pales in comparison to what Govco has done to Flint. It used to be called Vehicle City.

      Now it is a town where the lead poisoned children breath in the lead and mercury coming out of the only smokestacks in town. You know, the ones at the local mortuaries.

      • Tuanorea, we would surely be the envy of Hitler and Stalin, with all of our control and surveillance technology. I am barely old enough to remember the days just before bar codes and the like, when one could use a little artistic talent to subvert some of the controls. Once everything got computerized, that was it- a Nazi’s dream.

        I often think that is why the government and liberal media so vehemently decry “racism” today. Really, what business of it is theirs? But by staunchly disassociating themselves from such things, they can point out the ONE thing which in the minds of the average person defines Naziism. “Oh, they’re opposed to racism, so they can’t be totalitarian-Nazi-communists….” (And consequently, we live in a country now, where it is perfectly acceptable for an armed government goon to kill or abuse a white person, and such won’t even make the news- but of course, any violence inflicted upon a minority- even if they deserve it, is a case a “racism” and must be disavowed.)

  7. “Why do we tolerate it?”

    The answer is right there in the Declaration of Independence:
    “all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.”

    It ends “when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism.” And I would say we are pretty much there.

  8. This just might be the straw that breaks the proverbial camel’s back and finally provokes the dissolution of the formerly United States. And this time around it will he relatively bloodless. Texas most likely will be the first to go, followed by a frenzied race to the exits. Our regulatory agencies rule by decree. They’ve been empowered by our worthless and cowardly legislatures to utterly dictate to “we, the people,” with or without our consent, and they can fine us into poverty without trial or due process. This can’t go on, and when something can’t go on it finally stops, sometimes peacefully, sometimes with much murder and mayhem. The murderous old USSR broke apart literally overnight. The same could and likely will happen here, with Texas being the first to secede, followed by a mad race to the exits.

  9. As to why we tolerate it, we have the example of the Sainted Abe Lincoln who made war on half the states and killed 600,000 soldiers on both sides and an untold number of civilians, wrecking the lives of most of the people in all of the states.

    Now and then, his political descendants just jump bad for no real reason and slaughter a group of people here in the vaunted “homeland”, just as a reminder to the rest of us. That’s why we tolerate it. Nobody wants to be next.

    • Those who stand against the government are weirdos. Weirdos don’t get social support. The government stomps on weirdos when ever it feels it needs to.

      I have long been convinced that not only is an income tax on wages immoral but it’s actually illegal. Still pay because to not pay just means rotting in prison as weirdo or dead.

      In many countries people tolerate all sorts of things because they don’t know who the informants are.

      So long as the government has conned a critical mass of people resistance has a very high risk and will usually result in a person’s ruination. Not because the government is strong but because other people won’t stick together on the side of those who resist.

      Once the con fails… there’s nothing government can do to stick around except mass murder and maybe not even then provided anyone will still follow orders.

      • Brent, “Not because the government is strong but because other people won’t stick together on the side of those who resist. ”

        An astute observation.

        History shows that a superior invading army – and the US government is most certainly an invading army not just overseas but also equally so here in the “homeland” – cannot be defeated by an inferior army. It can only be be defeated by guerrilla warfare and guerrilla warfare cannot function without the backing of the populace.

        Hence the current troubles here in the “home of the brave” (snicker, snicker). Keeping Leviathan alive and being “dutifully” obedient to its Laws is more important to them than the actual Liberty the profess to love so much.

        • Our current military is comprised mainly of hard-right conservatives who’ll not fire on their own, whatever the White House simian commands. Quite the contrary – they’ll join the rebels, march on Washington, and burn it down, and rout all our verminous congress-critters and their tax-feeding staffs and run them out of town at gunpoint. You think not? It happened in the old USSR, the most brutal police state in all human history. And unlike the hapless Russians, we Americans have guns, hundreds of millions of them, as our Framers intended we should.

          • Hi Slobotnavich,

            I dunno. I agree the military might revolt. But will it respect the freedom of the individual? Or is the more likely outcome that the military will enforce the iron will of a jefe General? I see this outcome as being much more likely.

            Observe, as an example, the way ex-military cops deal with us “skells.”

    • Ed, I got into a shitty last week with the wife about that sort of shit. Why, she wanted to know, did I bring up the Branch Davidians. Hell,it was a long time ago.

      I sat there for a while trying to formulate an answer she couldn’t weasel out from. Then she says something like What are you doing? I’m trying to formulate an answer that makes sense to you which I just figured out is impossible. I devoted boxes of tapes on that but they seemed to have been recorded over.

      I smelled the shit from the gitgo. The video of them killing that kid on top of the silo who was unarmed and simply working did it for me right then. Once the tanks were brought in I knew they never intended to find the truth or bring anybody out. They simply wanted to look good on tv and got their asses handed to them… people who could accurately shoot a plain old semi-auto rifle. Somebody said about the ATF going down the roof in full combat gear and getting shot through a wall, They just shot them. No shit idiot, they shot them cause the ATF was shooting them willy-nilly. If they’d got through that window we’d have only had their version of the carnage that followed and it would still have resulted in those “agents” deaths.

      Nobody speaks of it these days for some reason but the military has many weird weapons dedicated to silencing us. They have those sound weapons that “temporarily” disable people except they never function again. Now they have micro-wave weapons….for crowd control also. That Boston fiasco should have jerked any idiots head around but no, they watched the breathless tv versions and took it as the gospel

      • It’s been claimed that the four ATFs who died there were killed by friendly fire. I don’t know the facts but John Ross repeated it in his novel “Unintended Consequences”. The claim was that ballistic evidence showed that they were all shot by rounds that penetrated their body armor and that kind of round was supplied to ATF agents for use in their MP3s.

        Ask most people about it and they’ll say that the victims were nutjobs who were cooking crank and molesting kids, etc. Most people are hypnotized by their TV sets.

        • It looked to me that a guy with a 30 cal rifle inside walked rounds through the wall outside a second story window eye. You could see the holes coming with them on the wall of the eye as they walked down the roof. The holes lined up fairly well with the height of the agents. It may have come from the ground or inside the house. I thought(the window looked to the north so the guy in the room shouldn’t have had a good look at them. It’s not surprising the rounds came from the east and not the west. Whatever the case, it laid them low. With the politics going on between those agencies and the general ineptness of the invaders, I can believe they were shooting each other……on purpose.

          If they’d been cooking crank there would have been no need for much of the seige since chemicals involved would have blown the house up and burned it down unless they were in an armored basement. That wouldn’t be a good place to brew speed. Child molesting depends on the mores’ of the accuser. I know families who trace their roots back to 12 year old mothers and even in my day 13 and 14 year old mothers were common enough. Look at the ages of the people who participated in the Oklahoma Sooner race for land. 14 year old boys and 12 year old girls staking their claims and raising families.

  10. Since all of us living creatures emit CO2 as we breathe I guess the next logical step would be to cut down our numbers, which is most likely part of the elitist plan to cull the herd of us mundanes. Of course the amount of CO2 spewed out by Uncles war machines keeping us “safe” 24/7 don’t count in that analysis.

    • One child policy worked out pretty well for the elites in China. If you want 2 kids, pay a tax. If you’re poor, well TS.

      If you have a girl, abort or put her up for adoption.

      • Hi Eric_G,

        Gotta call bullshit on this, “One child policy worked out pretty well for the elites in China.”

        Now the elites are dealing with a pussy deficit. Farming humans is tough enough without having 30 millions guys who can’t get laid and raise a family (create replacement human livestock).

        Now you have a group of guys who would be happy with sloppy seconds, but when you get to the point where your only option is sloppy thousands, the spoils of war – rape, pillage, and plunder – sound like a good option.

        If the elites can direct the hoi polloi to war against another tax farm, then the elites might limit their losses. But if 30 million hard dick serfs turn against their masters, then I get to call double bullshit and a I told you so.

  11. My sympathies go to the trucking industry. As Eric indicated, you all are next. The whole object of this insane regulatory action is to destroy our culture and society, economy and all.
    It is called dhimmitude.
    Remember the thought: “Those who prevent nonviolent change make violent change inevitable”.
    We think there is nothing we can do about this, but there is. The barrier to this tyranny is very high and very costly. The constitutional government created by the founding fathers died violently at Appomattox on 9 April 1865. They now have a monopoly on violence as we are told.
    When it gets bad enough, this monopoly will be dissolved by whatever means necessary.
    Watch Dr. Steve Pieczenik

  12. Eric,

    “The real question is: Why do we tolerate it?”

    It’s incredibly obvious, isn’t it? A foreign substance is introduced into our precious bodily fluids, without the knowledge of the individual, certainly without any choice. – General Jack D. Ripper

        • So you think an armed revolt 1700s style is gonna end well? We don’t revolt because we have good lives. We don’t revolt because we have food, electric, tv, clothes. Life is great.

          All of those things go away as soon as you start the revolt.

          Then say you somehow kill the millions of people who work for and support the government, what are you going to replace it with?

          Life will basically be like The Waljing Dead, sounds much better than what we have.

          • Todd, I basically agree with you. Something bad will have to happen. The bread and circuses are working as intended right now. Let something happen to the food supply and we’ll have martial law in a week, maybe less. Rolling blackouts are a pain and cause some people to die but a big blackout for a long time and we’re back again to not having food. No fuel, again, no food. Hopefully that tv will continue and the people’s emotional pablum will get them through. Good looking talking heads will be telling everyone that it’s tight for all of us(just look at me, I haven’t eaten today…..ok, I did eat but not enough and then threw up….like I normally do)but hang in there, the cavalry is on the way.

            And lets not forget when we speak of armed revolt, govt. has all the big shit. Big riots that threaten several million or tens of millions, hit em with a propane bomb. That’ll put the quietus on everybody in a mile diameter. If our troops wont attack us, don’t worry, govt. has troops from just about everywhere that will. And they’ll be eating well and getting paid and won’t think twice about it.

            Old Billy Bob down there at the courthouse signed that Oathkeeper’s agreement so he won’t be on board with the feds, he’ll just put his family on a helicopter(state-owned) and fly their ass to some place safe and keep his word to not bear arms against the people who elected him.

          • Thanks. That’s the reason. WE tolerate THEM because they don’t take too much away. THEY know that if they go too far WE send them packing. And once again, our productivity means they can create forced inefficiency to benefit them.

            And WE outnumber THEM by a very comfortable margin. One lone nut is easy to kill. Swarms of people are very hard to kill.

          • Todd,


            “So you think an armed revolt 1700s style is gonna end well?”

            The path you are on, today, at this very moment, is going to end well?

            The BEST you can hope for is to join the Sonderkommandos. You’ll get a few extra rations. Then you end up in the EPA approved krematorium just like everyone else.

            • Like I said we tolerate it because what are we going to do. What exactly is it you think we can do? There is no monarchy that you simply string up and it all changes.

              Within the first few days of the uprising highways will be shut down and stores will be out of food. Likely power will be shut off.

              What are you going to do then? That situation sounds a whole lot worse that what we have now.

              • Hi Todd,

                Agreed. Which is why the road I have taken – futile as it may be – is to attempt to get at least some people to grok that coercive collectivism is a bad idea, morally as well as practically.

                It’s all we can realistically do – for all the reasons you list.

          • Getting rid of more than eighty percent of those employed by government is necessary and on the right path to dealing with the current abuse. There are far too many idjits slopping at the public trough, unaccountable to we who pay their wages AND suffer the consequences of their idiocy and greed. And by “getting rid of” I am NOT advocating rounding them all up and shoooting them. No, sentence them all to having to find jobs doing something that contributes to society, and EARN a living t it. When WE the plain folks backbone of society, not only have to make our own way but also maintain the trough sloppers that afflict us daily (I’ve read that the cost burden on we Yanks for dealing with all the requirements, regulations, etc from EPA alone is above a trillion bucks per year…. money that oce was in our pockets

          • Indeed yes. As george Carlin once stated, “nobody cares, everybody has a cell phone that makes pancakes and scratches their balls.”

  13. Since I do most of the grocery shopping and otherwise shopping, I notice increase in prices and I’ve noticed them lately on virtually everything. Even that pack of needles from China that costs $1 and next time costs $1.15 has gone up 15%…….and groceries have to go up and will go up again next year for a good reason. Truck drivers are making less than ever and it’s because trucking is making less than ever. But next year, digital logging is another of those “policies” at the point of a gun. There is no getting around it, it will be law, is going to be law. The drivers best friend has always been a “liar’s book” aka, log book. Last year at our company DOT company that stands in between us and the DOT(another cost) I told one of the women there “Just think, you get to read some of the finest fiction ever written”. She smiled and said “Oh, you mean the liars book?”. We both laughed. First let me say, nobody would fudge these damned things if they didn’t have to. You’re already working way too long hours legally but to make ends meet, you produce a log that is pure fiction so you can put more hours in. How can that be done when the digital log is showing a truck actually moving at whatever speed(another rub)and you want to show it’s only run so many hours? So, will pay increase? It hasn’t in 40 years. It’s continually dropped. Nobody in the biz thinks we’re about to be compensated with higher wages when in effect, the company is going to make less too.

    For the guys who’ve been running older rigs not subject to computers and such, they’ll have to shell out whatever the damned things cost…..or close the doors. Does anyone think that eventually that cost won’t have to be passed on? We(owner/operators)struck over not making money in the 70’s based on the lie of limited and therefore costly fuel. In a few months fuel costs doubled. And then they went up more. Middle of ’75 I put a For Sale sticker in the windshield. I was hauling agricultural goods for the most part so I was exempt from logging. I’d work 2 days with a few hours rest and clear $20 above fuel costs. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that’s only a small fraction of the cost of a single tire. I went to work for farmers who were getting it broken off in them too but at least they were still alive business wise. Not much fun to bust ass 100 hrs a week just to make a big rig payment. Not much fun to bust ass 100 hours a week doing anything I’ve done. I suspect that goes for any business. If you spent that much time in a commercial plane going from one place to another and trying to do your job it’s not fun at all as a friend did at the time. This was 5 years after the wage in the US peaked. I picked back up in ’77 and worked for various companies and made “liveable” wages. I once started for a new company on a Sunday afternoon with another driver who was to evaluate my skills. It was a 700 mile run. We got back and he said I had passed. What he really said was “I don’t have anything to teach you. Be careful and good luck”.
    After getting in and fueling and filling out our liars books, we went home and I had instructions to be back early that evening. I ran the next 4 days out of state and couldn’t sleep. I went to my doctor who was open briefly on Saturday morning and told him I couldn’t sleep. He said “Show me your eyes”. I lifted my sunglasses and he told me to put them back, put them back. Then he wrote me a script for something to knock me out. and the next evening I was back on the road to Co. and NM and La all week. I didn’t even have a sleeper, just a day cab. Ah, the glorified life of a trucker. Yeah, we’ve seen it all…..or at least been down the road and seen a bit of nothing. I can tell you right now I’d rather meet a trucker with some speed in his system than one that’s asleep….at the wheel.

    Next year we get to find out how the new truckers who don’t have a clue are going to do. I may not be trucking. I can operate a tractor and keep food on the table and the DOT isn’t in the cotton fields…..yet.

        • I don’t know why? Trucking is good here. You can work for an outfit and make $75k. Running for yourself much more. There is lots of shipping here in Pa

          • You can work for the same company here…..and supposedly make $75K…..but I don’t know anyone who is an automaton and actually makes that. It’s akin to that mythical “up to 238 miles” on a single charge. Hell, just two years ago everybody was talking of making $150,000 a year driving a truck, even those misguided people on LRC. I looked over hell and half a Georgia and didn’t know a soul who ever came within half that but it must have been true, that’s what people were saying. I could post of list of company’s who advertise that mythical $75K and it’s possible, if you find the perfect fit guy to run doubles and make more money and neither one of you are ever tired or sick or just sick and tired or you never have truck problems or get stuck somewhere waiting to load/unload and always get the premium loads where people are waiting on their ear for that load and you’re gone in 20 minutes of arrival and never have to sit in line waiting for an oil change, a tire repair/replacement, the DOT shutting you down for oil residue around an air line fitting or, or, or. I’ve only been hearing about those jobs for 50 years.

            Just recently a guy driving a brand new truck ran about a week and the Cat engine swallowed something, some pieces came loose and he waited a week for it to run again. It had 50 miles on it coming from the dealership when he started driving it. And trailers that get pulled by everybody and their dog never break, ever. You back up to one that looks a little low and your tractor suspension won’t deflate enough to get under it so you do everything you can but the landing gear won’t go up a fraction. Stuff like that never happens and axles never give up. Never fear though, there’s another trailer, unloaded waiting for you just 300 miles away. And those reefer companies who advertise that never get their loads fouled up or have a reefer malfunction and you get to swap loads into another trailer. Trucking pays so much I’m simply rich and don’t even know it.

            • No shit. 45 cents a mile is about the average, ain’t it? How can they claim you’d make $75k a year when it takes an hour and a half to clock $45 and you’re not being paid for waiting for a partial unload, or for a trailer to be emptied for a switch, or for any other of the thousand things that don’t get you a mile down the road, but still have to be done?

              • Ed, 42 cents is probably average and you might get 44 if you jump through hoops(qualifications dontcha see?) I’ve seen 45 but not for just driving and switching trailers. That’s more of loading and unloading which you aren’t necessarily doing the loading or unloading but you have to be there and then tie it down and tarp it, etc… you have to make sure some dipstick loads it how you want it. You can eat up a lot of time doing that but I’m’ assuming if you turn the truck off during that period and let it get really hot inside the digital log will show “off work”. But who knows? I haven’t used one yet but I will after the 1st of the year. Some companies advertise 50 cents and that’s as high as it gets but that’s running doubles, something I’ve never done and don’t intend to do. Then when you get a day or two or a few days off, some cigarette smoking, truck stop whoring driver with the cleanliness of a sow in heat will drive it and you can hold your nose and spend many hours getting it to where you can tolerate it again. By the time you get nearly all that funk out of it, you’ll be a month or more down the road and get to do it all over again.

                It’s more like trading tractors every day except most of those don’t get too trashed in just a single day and hopefully the driver before you doesn’t have any bad habits. When you crawl into one though you have to install your CB and it’s almost never a good install, maybe a rubber snubber(the only thing I really like about Volvo is their big velco strap that will hold any size radio.

                But what you say about changing trailers and loads and stopping for fuel and oil changes and tire repair/replacement eat up time you’re not getting paid for. Oh, they might say they’ll pay you $10/hr. for that stuff but turning it in and actually getting paid are two totally different things.

                And those companies that advertise a 2.5 year tractor replacement are rarely that quick and even if they are the tractors are for the most part ragged out.

                The only bright spot I’ve had lately beside getting drug tested for a job and then they never called me to work. Don’t quite know what was up with that. They were looking for work and I told them if they gave me one of those brand new rigs I had contacts and could probably find some jobs myself. One owner seemed eager about that but I spoke with the other one last week and he was unaware of it and had already put somebody on every truck they bought. The wonderful life of a felon coming back to me once again I’m sure.

                But a good friend has had a company he worked for 2.5 years continue to call him. They haul all sorts of stuff and some really “hot” nuclear wastes and ask everybody around they(FBI, TSA) can find about you and your entire family. I’m guessing it’s a TWIC qualification too. Not only would they not want me but no way I’m getting an digital eye scan put on record so I’m not hot on that job. He asked if I’d drive his truck(the one he owns) and he’d work for them. I said I’d do it since he has a nice Peterbilt with a madman 60 Series Detroit Diesel and a 13 speed with a new air ride seat, a nice one(that’ll make you or break you). I don’t really care what I haul but I have my druthers and he hauls rock in a belly dump so I’m cool with that. I’ve spent years learning to push those to the max. Eric speaks of people taking curves slowly. I wish I could get him in that 40 tons and take him through a 45 mph S curve at 65 using the whole road. Rock hauling gets pretty hairy at times when the rush is on and it’s nearly always on.

                But here’s the kicker on most of those carriers, they speed limit their trucks to 60 or 62mph claiming it’s safer. Safer it ain’t but it uses less fuel. The problem driving one is in Tx. and other states I’d lose $70-80/day over a 75 mph truck. I told several of them when they decided to run those trucks at least 70 to call me back. Of course they won’t and will continue to starve the drivers. It’s hard to find a good trucking job. I applied to one that basically hauls big dirt equipment and I like that and it pays well, or at least better than other kinds.

                • Yep, that’s why I haven’t been in a truck since ’79. Driving in coal country back then broke me of wanting to drive. Those coal truckers weren’t exactly road sharers and the roads in KY and WV were hairy as hell.

                  I might have stayed on a few more years if it had paid worth a shit, but it never did. I don’t like driving good enough to do it for what I could make trading coins at flea markets.

                  • In ’79 I wouldn’t have wanted to be near a truck in either of those states. Truckers took nearly the whole road because the roads were barely there. Squiggly, crazy, intersections in the middle of nowhere on a steep curve with a school bus sign, roads made by drunk snakes.

                    I’m not one of those “we are the greatest cause we’re Texans” and if I ever was, it died with a still happening string of horrible governors and lege’s. But we do have decent roads. It may be only because of oil but whatever the reason(oil)we do have decent roads in most of the state. East Tx. ain’t too great nor the waterheads that live there. They don’t even know they’re not still back in Kaintuk and wonder why they never see the mountains. At least in west Tx. we have mirrors and can adjust if we noticed our mouths hanging open and our eyes are crossed. Or maybe not. My ex-boss could fix a gaze on you and after speaking for a bit, you’d realize it was somebody else he was speaking to. Amazingly, when he closes an eye, he’s a good shot with the other. Well….that’s something.

                    • No shit. The guys who drove for that outfit had a term, “swapping mirrors” to describe what happened when you were crossing one of those narrow bridges and were met by a coal truck doing 75 with a 55 ton load of coal.

                      You’d end up without a mirror at least, if you didn’t go off the bridge. It never happened to me, but then I only drove for them a few years.

                    • Ed, my first run down US 80 was an eye opener. Once we hit Ms. the roads were so narrow and bridges even narrower you had to reach out and jerk your mirror in and Barely miss the oncoming rig. It was wrecks from one end to the other all the way through Al. Back then it was called Blood Alley and that was no exaggeration.

                    • Ed and Eight,

                      Will you two quit your bitching and just get back in your trucks and drive.

                      A lot of turkeys and toys need to be delivered between now an the end of the year.

                      Why can’t the two of you think of the children?

                      Slackers! The both of you!

                      Always trying to come up with some bullshit reason why you can’t drive 180 hours a week.


                      In a world where any wet behind the ears law school graduate is billing your municipality for 250 hours a week, why can’t you drive at least 200?

                      And, please spare me the tired old line that “there’s just not enough hours in a day.”


                  • T, the new digital logging is not only gonna cut down on productivity but put small companies in a bind and independents down in pay, maybe another one of those “out of bidness” things.

                    This is more bullshit dreamed up by a bureaucrat. It’s another way to keep you under the fedgov thumb every minute.

                    If it were just me and Cholley Jack I might ease off into the pasture country and roam with the weather. Ok, I’m too old for that but ease off to some far away country on a Chinese ship bound for the south Pacific, some place where they worship WWll army/airforce personnel they’re still waiting for.

  14. There already are truckers avoiding California because of their additional requirements from CARB.

    (PDF warning:)

    As you might expect, they exempt government-owned vehicles. But anyone with an engine older than 1996 is banned from the state (as of 2016) unless it can meet 2010 emissions standards. Which none of them can (designed to meet requirements from 14 years in the future? Really?)

    There are additional requirements like your trailer has to have aero features.

    They’re going to regulate themselves out of the food transport business.

    • 55mph maximum in Ca. for big rigs. Who wants to do that, make less money? Most of the big trucking companies don’t have areas you can pick to drive. If they did nobody would go to the NE and since everybody makes the same pay….well…..
      Some companies require at least a year of chaining truck tires to drive all 48. I’ve never chained a tire and never will. Texas doesn’t allow chains since they like their roads the way they are. So much for better pay in the NE.

      As far as fuel mileage is concerned, some companies see that as %1 priority. In construction though, you can’t use one of those road only trucks without tearing it up. Everything in life, including trucking is a trade-off. Somebody is out there in 30 mph wind and 20 degrees welding a pipe and when they get through and flip up their hood, wow, it’s that girl who dances topless down at the bar. Whoda thunk it?

  15. It has to be by design to impoverish. Why? Because trucks of this nature already must be close to the maximum possible fuel economy without impacting other things too much. Why would they be? Their customers demand it.

    If a truck manufacturer knew a way to get even a 2% decrease in fuel consumption they would do it to sell more trucks. That’s big money to a trucking company. Very big money to a large trucking company.

    CAFE had a twisted sort of point with passenger cars because the fedgov did the usual control freak thing in thinking that every car buyer’s priorities should be the same as their own. New car buyers often put fuel economy way down the list. Trucking companies it’s up there in the top three. Always. Probably #1 for most.

    Nobody buys the truck that guzzles 50% more fuel because it looks nicer or has a faster 0-60 time.

    People in government aren’t so stupid as to not understand this. They have something else in mind.

    • Besides, given how customizable big rigs are, I don’t see how they can be compared! They can be equipped with different engines, transmissions, axle ratios, and so on. It’s possible to equip one Peterbilt 579 for mountain work, while equipping another to be optimized for work on level ground. The two trucks will have totally different engines, transmissions, axle ratios, everything. So, how do the geniuses at the EPA propose to compare their respective fuel economy? I don’t see how that works…

  16. “The Executive branch is taking advantage of poorly written legislation.”

    Just as importantly, the executive branch is taking advantage of decades of constitutional misdirection in the form of executive orders. Executive orders, if they are even allowed by twisting of the text of the Constitution, can only be construed as regulations made by a sitting president and binding only on executive branch employees. Lacking any constitutional authority, executive orders should, logically, expire with the change of the executive. Any EO issued by a president, for example, should expire when his successor takes office.

    Congress alone is empowered to legislate by the Constitution. The president has no authority to issue laws by proclamation. Congress, also, has no authority to hand off their legislative powers to any other department.

    The Constitution was instituted as an overthrow of the Articles of Confederation, and it was opposed by many, partly because it was so vaguely worded as to make it impossible to enforce its provisions.

  17. Remember, Scary Reid pulled the anti-climate change bill from the Senate docket in 2010. All the activity that was outlined in the bill, as Eric points out is being implemented by executive order. The Executive branch is taking advantage of poorly written legislation.

    And once again, plants like CO2 (more CO2 in the atmosphere means they don’t need to produce as many leaves):

    And CO2 means more ocean evaporation, which means more water in the air, which means more rain. Another win for plants! And if it does actually trap heat in the atmosphere, it will lead to longer growing seasons, which is a trifecta for the plants!

    Yes, some areas near the equator might become deserts. But some areas above the 49th parallel will become good crop land too. Good news for Canada. And last I saw, the rainforests were pretty close to the equator and they seem to be doing ok.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here