Sniffing a Scandal

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They only crucified Jesus once – and that was enough (so we are told) to atone for all mankind’s sins . . . in perpetuity.

And mankind did (and does) sin. In the moral sense. Murder, theft, rape and all the other uglies.

VW suffers crucifixion in perpetuity for its sins – which are of a purely statutory nature. Like failing to buckle-up for safety. So far, the German automaker has been godsmacked to the tune of $30.4 billion (not a typo) in fines and other levies for tuning its diesel-powered cars to pass government emissions certification tests.

To which the obvious rejoinder is – well, what’s the problem? They passed the tests, right?

Ah, but they didn’t really pass the tests. VW “cheated” by programming the cars to make it through the tests, then altered their programming once through the tests.

Here’s where things get . . . interesting.

The tests VW “cheated” on are not the same tests as the tailpipe exhaust emissions tests most of us have to subject our cars to, in order to register them and renew registration. All of the “cheating” VWs passed – and continue to pass – these “tailpipe sniffer” tests, which ought to give you some idea about the amount of “cheating” VW was up to on the other tests.

Think about it.

The smog check joints – thousands of them, across the land – detected no smog (technically, no noxious compounds such as oxides of nitrogen) in excess of the allowable thresholds. The cars passed those tests. If their emissions were not within allowable limits, they wouldn’t have.

They also passed by the automated roadside emissions detectors in ultra-strict California. These snuff the air as cars pass by and if the air is not up to snuff, they snap a photo of the offending car’s plates and send its owner a nasty note informing him that he must bring the car in for examination, pronto – or else.

But not one VW diesel – as far as I have been able to determine – was identified as a “polluter” by these tests. Or the tests you stand in line to go through to get your tags renewed. The absence of any California drive-by smog alarums is particularly noteworthy because the cars being snuffed were being driven. Not idling while hooked to a test rig. But the “cheating” asserted by Uncle asserts that once out in the world, actually driving, the “cheating” cars became churning cauldrons of toxic effluvia-spewing foulness.

“Up to 40 times” the allowable amount of oxides of nitrogen! You may remember the cry (and the hue which went along for the ride). It sounds dark and stormy, extremely ominous. But if it really was anything like a black cloud of noxiousness, how come the roadside sniffers and tailpipe tests never identified even one?

One of two things must be true.

Either the smog tests and roadside sniffers are worthless – they cannot detect “excessive” and ”harmful” emissions and not just from VWs but from cars, generally – in which case an epic fraud has been perpetrated by the government, which forces us to waste time each year waiting in line to have our vehicles smog-tested, to assure their tailpipe cleanliness on machines incapable of registering excessive emissions . . .

Or – possibly more alarming – VW’s diesels were targeted for termination because of the threat they posed to the Electric Car Agenda. They were too efficient and practical and inexpensive.

Given the choice between a $21,000 Jetta TDI that goes 700 miles on a tank and refuels in five minutes vs. a $35,000 Tesla that goes 150 miles (maybe) and needs hours to recharge, most buyers will make the obvious choice.

If they are allowed the choice.

They no longer have that choice. The VW (and Audi and Porsche) diesels are gone, replaced by less efficient, more expensive gas engines – and VW is being bled to the tune of billions to finance the propagation of even less efficient and more expensive electric cars, which can’t compete with diesel-powered cars on the merits.

California, for instance, is going to use $422.6 million of VW’s money to erect electric car charging stations and to subsidize electric public transport (bus and rail). Georgia will use $63.6 million to finance (subsidize) “zero emissions” electric shuttles at Hartsfield -Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Minnesota will purchase 65 electric vehicle charging stations with its portion of the loot ($47 million).

Crucifixion coin is raining down like manna from heaven on every state in the union – all of them alleging damages done by VW’s “cheating” but none of them having produced even a single actual victim of this “cheating.”

The governor of Connecticut – another state which wet its beak in VW’s blood – stated the following:

“While it will be impossible to offset the entirety of (the) pollution that resulted from VW’s emissions cheating, the release of these funds will help to improve air quality and protect public health . . .”

Italics added.

The “pollution that resulted” from VW’s “cheating” was never quantified; like other modern shibboleths – “climate change,” for instance – things are never defined but always sound really bad.

And no harm is ever proved.

Same goes for “improve air quality and protect public health.” Well, it sounds great. But what does it mean, precisely?

Nothing.

But it has been useful (in the sense of Lenin’s useful idiots) for accomplishing something. First, the disappearance of diesels – and not just VWs and not just the ones VW was selling before the company got nailed to the cross. There are also the ones VW never got to sell – including models in development which averaged 80 MPG – and didn’t need hours to recharge or cost as much as a Lexus or Mercedes, either.

Second, it made possible the diversion of VW’s honestly earned profits – which could have and almost certainly would have gone toward the development of even more efficient diesel-powered alternates to electric cars – into the pockets of electric car grifters, public and private.

This is how it goes. And why it goes.

. . .

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145 COMMENTS

  1. The next project will be a pre-1976 Toyota, Mazda (Ford Courier), Isuzu (Chevy LUV), or Datsun pickup with a Mercedes four or five-banger DIESEL dropped in. Coupled to the Borg-Warner manuals that MB used (easier to weld an adaptive frame and bracket than to mate the German oil-burner with the Jap gear box), we’ll get 30 MPG and not need that BLUE piss for NOx reduction that the modern diesels have to use. And have a truck that likely I’ll be BURIED in (I’m 59) when I’m done with this here 3rd rock from the Sun.

    FUCK CARB and fuck “Commiefornia” in general. I’m retired to Nevada or “Yew-Tah” anyway. More likely the former, they have no State Income Tax, and I can drink and be a whore-monger LEGALLY.

    • Its actually a good time to “dieselize” your favorite old chassis , Cummins has these neat 2.8 litre 4 cylinders that weigh a bit under “43 stones” ( around 600#) everything to make it run is included, computer and all, I don’t think it needs Ad- Blue, they are listed for $500 off this month.Have actually tossed around the idea of converting my06 Dakota to Diesel , the problem is its probably not worthwhile and it would never pay for itself in Fuel savings,I expect though it probably wouldn’t be a lot more costly then a crate Hemi conversion.
      One interesting thing that has come to light recently is that people are starting to convert some chassis to utilize the Ford inline 6 cylinder , availible in 401 cid and 474 cid flavors with a Bosch mechanical pump the 474 cid would spin past 3000 RPM with no problem, these engines used a “parent metal ” block and are getting to be more plentiful than the 4BT and 6BT Cummins inline engines , it seems that the best way to acquire a 6BT now is to bid on an school bus and take the engine from it. I have had a little experience with the Ford “Brazil” engine and for a medium duty engine it seemed to be pretty good.

      • Hi Kevin,

        I have this idea for a post-crash vehicle, using a two-cylinder diesel tractor engine I have. This engine in an ATV chassis or similar would probably give 150 MPG. Not speedy MPG, but I bet it would make 40 MPH or maybe even faster…

        • I believe it was the “Mother Earth News” that had plans for a little sporty car that utilized a Small Kubota 3 or 4 cylinder engine, the mileage was projected to be around 100 mpg or so .

  2. This brings up two issues that the formerly free United States has undergone in its recent history.

    One is that we enact punishments based upon the simple idea that an event happened, instead of assessing whether any real harm occurred. We are more obsessed with levying administrative-type fines, instead of determining if any damage actually happened.

    Two is the thinking originally expressed by Henry (“You can have any color you want–as long as it’s black.”) Ford, and modified by Obama’s former Regulatory Czar Crass Cass “The Ass” Sunnstein: Your freedom of choice will be limited by what we allow you to choose from.

    Oh–number three–money will always flow to wherever the government apparatchiks want it to flow.

    • Hi Travis,

      Yes, amen.

      I’d add that we’re also subject to punishment based on the asserted possibility of harm which might result – according to the feelings of those who enact/support such laws.

      I had a big argument with my “conservative” friend about this the other night. He defends those loathsome checkpoints often discussed here and commented that “I’ve had several friends killed by drunk drivers.” Now, this friend is a big gun rights guy – which of course I am as well because I am a big human rights guy. Anyhow, I pointed out to him that the gun grabbers he loathes justify taking away his guns (and my guns) because “they have had friends lose their lives to gun violence” – essentially the same argument he uses to justify the DUI checkpoints.

      I think I staggered him at least a little bit. I am hoping he ponders it some…

      • Eric, I have used that type of message before (including here in a few posts) related to drunk (or drugged) driving: If the driver was completely sober when his actions killed a friend/family member, would you feel any better?

        It might come across as harsh, but my message is that the government is in the habit of trying to punish based upon circumstance, rather than for the action itself.

        This contrary point could bring up another interesting argument: If the sober driver killed your friend/family member, it might not have been an accident. It may have been murder, since he knew exactly what he was doing and was in full control of the vehicle.

        • Travis, this has baffled me as well. People almost seem relieved when they hear that the driver at fault in a fatal crash was not drunk, as if the victim is somehow less dead now. To the government, drunkenness is often seen as an excuse for leniency (“Aw, give him a break: He’s got a drinking problem!”). But when the offense was a drunk-driving crash, it’s an excuse to throw the book at him. Makes no sense.

          • You get it, Roland. The victim is just as dead in both cases. It’s just a difference of where one sees the blame. It also brings up the idea of pre-crimes, and how those ideas can be applied.

            For the record, I believe the story begins with the crash. I don’t believe in looking at every activity that one person participated in throughout the day leading up to the crash. If you carry the idea too far, you might get government-funded studies that show that 90% of car crashes happened when one of the drivers got out on the left side of the bed the morning of the crash, so some vapid legislator gets the idea to make it a crime to get out of bed on the left side. Then they add that violators will be fined $500 for each occurrence.

            It’s the slippery slope of saying everything is forbidden unless it is specifically identified as being legal. The exact opposite of the principles that used to separate the United States from the rest of the world’s countries.

            • “Leaving the scene” also comes to mind. If some dunce who fancies himself a racecar driver is following three feet behind another vehicle at 70 mph, slams into the back of it and pushes it into the path of an oncoming truck killing the whole family inside, as long as he’s not drunk and afterwards doesn’t leave until the cops give him permission, well, hey, it was just an “accident.”

            • “It’s the slippery slope of saying everything is forbidden unless it is specifically identified as being legal. ”

              We’re approaching the point where everything not mandatory is prohibited.

    • Travis, that’s a good point. One of the early Virginia statesmen , I think it was John Taylor, said that any law (the violation of which) that cannot show an injured party isn’t a proper law at all, it’s a money trap. That’s been demonstrably true for a long time.

      At one time, the Supreme Court would actually consider whether a tax was being levied as a means of raising revenue, as opposed to being levied to influence behavior. That certainly isn’t the case today.

      Tariffs were once supposed to be the primary means of raising revenues for the federal government, but are now used exclusively to encourage or discourage trade with producers in other countries. That weaponization of tariffs was a major cause of the movement toward secession that led to Lincoln’s war.

    • True – Henry Ford had his own (National) Socialist ideas…and almost drove Ford into bankruptcy in the mid-1920s and twenty years later (his grandson, Henry Ford II, literally saved Ford from either going under or being bought out by Chrysler)…but the old boy had a simple, reliable vehicle in the Tin Lizzie, which, IMO, was the greatest car EVER. It literally put America “On Wheels”.

      Because Ford was inflexible about styling changes or even technology upgrades, unless deemed absolutely necessary (the Model T is a prime example of “Design for Manufacturablity” as even wooden crates and pallets used to ship parts were repurpopsed into the body, the production line being so efficient that in 1922 it was estimated that at “The Rouge”, iron ore, coal, wood, rubber, and silica arrived at the rail head or ship docks, and emerged as a finished car in 43 hours), a huge aftermarket to customize the car, or to add features found in more expensive makes emerged. And, in time, as other makers gained popularity and cost-effectiveness with cars that were superior to the Model T and began to approach it in price on the most basic of models, Ford had to give in and design the Model A and then in a few more years, the Flathead V8. A classic example of the free market producing innovation IAW consumer demand.

  3. Eric,
    To add to my Elantra LTD and Mazda 3 GT review, I looked at a BMW X2 on display at COSTO. Base price 36k, and with the M Sport and M Sport X packages at 11k extra came out to over 47k. It had a gorgeous blue, obviously multi-coat paint job with clear coat, but I’ve read that the blind spot monitoring, that is standard on our 26.8k MSRP Mazda 3 GT is not even available. And that the driver’s space is cramped on leg room. Whoah! Hehehe! The Mazda 3 has more features at 20k MSRP less. Yowza!!! And the BMW X2 should have at least a 3L T not a 2L T. Sick 🙂
    Aloha Nui, Vic

  4. Eric,
    Here is a real world story on how the VW diesel scandal has affected new cars in the US. Last year we wanted to get out of my wife’s 2014 Sonata because of the 2.4 L engine recall. We traded it for a new 2017 loaded Elantra Limited. It was a nice care that was loaded with tech. After detailing it, I noticed there was a build quality issue with the body assembly, notably the left fender didn’t align with the headlight, and the left taillight had a visible gap between it and the body when looking at a low angle. And in the interior, the leather seat workmanship was lacking with a couple pinches and wrinkles. The new Elantra is a nice design, but the brakes are a little weak. And the steering was a little funky, occasionally pulling to the right or left at the whims of the road surface. The suspension actually wasn’t bad. The biggest problem after a year of driving it was the underpowered 147HP engine. I got tired of the transmission constantly searching gears and having to floor it and have the engine go to 4000 RMP just to get it going in town (it’s mostly a town car), and merging on the freeway and the interstate. And, cruising at 75 MPH in 6th gear it was turning 2800 RMP. That’s rediculous. So after a year I got tired of this underpowered engine with 147 HP and 132 FP of torque. The real problem was the torque. The VW Jetta TDI has 140 HP has 236 FP of torque. I demoed a Sportwagen TDI in 2012, and it had good low end pull, but they wanted too much and wouldn’t pay me enough for my trade. So, with the ’17 Elantra LTD, I took the loss, and traded it for a Mazda 3 GT with the tech package. Night and day, night and day. The Mazda 3 with the 2.4 L engine has 184 HP and 185 FP of torque and rarely gets above 3k RPM in city driving has good low end torque and it holds the gear and doesn’t search gears. You don’t even need the sports mode unless you are pretty much racing. And, at 75 MPH in 6th gear it turns at 2200 RPM, which is where an engine should be at that speed. Also, the build quality on the 2018 Mazda 3 GT is sublime. Fit and finish is excellent (paid 200 extra for the Snowflake White Pearlcoat Mika and it is nice, definitely worth it). The interior is excellent with the leather seating of premium quality and premium quality soft touch surfaces above the waist level. The suspension is excellent, taking even cattle guards much better. The steering is also excellent. The infotainment system is pretty good too. The only place I can ding the Mazda 3 is no seat memory. I would call the Mazda 3 a “near luxury” car, and a close equivalent of the Mercedes E class, BMW 3s and the Audi 3s for anywhere from 8 to 15k less. It’s probably for best compact car made. We got the 4 door GT/Tech which retails for almost 27k for just over 22k plus tax and fees. The Elantra MSRPed for more, and we purchased it for about the same price. But what a difference, no comparison. I would advise anyone who’s locked in on a new Elantra to go for the Sport model with the 1.6T, and look closely at the build quality which has improved for 2018. Or, just go for a Mazda 3 T or GT. Let me tell you, if Mazda was making diesels for the US market, they would be gangbusters. But they’re too smart to get tangled up in the diesel conundrum right now.
    Aloha, Vic

  5. AlexP712,
    I agree, Martin Winterkorn folded way to easy. Wonder what the backstory is, did they secretly threaten him and his family? And I agree on the diesel car demand in the US, it’s still there. A lot of people still want the diesel VWs, Audis, Porsches etc. Of course the VWs diesels are the least expensive, and they are “cool”. The Audis and Porches are cool but a lot more expensive. And of course the Mercedes and BMWs are way expensive.The question is, will the state and federal governments allow you to register them unmodified? In Arizona for example, a new car doesn’t need to be “smogged” for 5 years from the model year, but will they mess with you on these diesels? Don’t know, I gave up keeping up on the VW diesel news a year ago. You would want to have some extra money to deal with these potential issues. You could always go “outlaw”. I went back to a gas pickup for that very reason after owning several diesel pickups. Convoluted emissions number 1, and then long term maintenance number 2. And my F-150 5.0 tows our “downsized” 5k ultra light 24 foot TT just fine. And the TT has got plenty of room for my wife and I, and it fits in some the beach campgrounds where I go surfing whereas a larger RV can’t go.
    Aloha, Vic

    • Aloha yourself 🙂
      Yes that is the enduring mystery in my mind about this whole affair, that is why he folded almost immediately with no attempt to defend the company or the product. In my opinion, he violated his fiduciary responsibility to the company and its employees. There has to be more to this
      Full disclosure I have ’14 Cayenne Diesel – cold dead hands and all that.

  6. The local dealer had a Toureg TDI on the lot, I stopped by the look. It was sold. The only Golf TDI was out on a test drive and when the lady got back she bought it. They are trying to find me a Sportwagen with the diesel. The general manager of the dealership (A friend of mine) told me that he as told the new Atlas based pickup truck (Tanoak) will be sold with a TDi to test the waters. But it is at least 3 years away.
    Don’t give up yet. VW is hardly down for the count.

      • I agree, this foray into electric cars worries me but it ought to worry Elon Musk even more. VW actually knows how to build cars, but I had a conversation with a VW person at the new Jetta roll out party. According to him, they are talking internally about putting the TDi in the new Tanoak when it comes out. It is great idea, then hopefully the Atlas will be next. But for life of me why don’t they sell the Polo here with the TDI it can pull 80+ mpg, I know this because I spent 3 weeks with on driving across Italy. Their excuses are unconvincing (too small etc) It is not all that small and there are plenty smaller cars on the market.

      • eric there is precedent for harassment of good mileage cars.

        I watched a YouTube video of a fellow who detailed his fight with gummint when he produced a device that improved engine efficiency by 23% overall.

        I got the impression diesels were close to 30 %..

        Anyhow, every time he produced a new unit it would be stolen.

        He knew his phones were tapped and probably had a bug on his car. He couldn’t go any he wasn’t tracked. This was late 79 when the new (another) oil boom was beginning. I’ll be able to post a link when a new computer arrives.

        • Morning, Eight!

          I tell people: If the government really were “concerned” about gas mileage – and if carbon dioxide “emissions” really are such a dire threat – then the government would immediately rescind all the saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety mandates which have made cars overweight and fuel-inefficient, notwithstanding all the technology they now boast.

          A drivetrain capable of 40 MPG in a current 3,200 pound car such as the new Camry as a for-instance would be capable of least 50 (if not 60 MPG) in a car that weighed 2,000 lbs.

          But it’s not allowed – and that tells you the truth about the “gas mileage” and CO2 emissions bogeys…

  7. I have been suggesting this from the very beginning. It makes no sense why Winterkorn rolled over so quickly on this. They could have fought this on a variety of technical points for a tiny fraction of these costs. The “40 times” is total BS, maybe 40 time for 3 milliseconds but overall they were better and very clean which of course was not the real issue.
    The government is working hard to limit our mobility, $80,000 electric cars that give you a 200 mile range will keep people planted.

    The other thing there is no way the USA’s electrical grid can handle the increased demand from millions of electric cars
    .

    • Can the usa grid handle the extra demand? Not without burning a s°°tload of coal. Yeah real environmentally friendly.

    • Alex, you have it right about the electrical grid. The fools pushing electric cars must not be able to equate rolling blackouts to an electrical grid that’s maxxed out.

      Only 1 state I know of that has surplus electricity and that is due to ERCOT and that state is Texas…..except for the panhandle and those people are accustomed to hard times anyway :).

      Some wind generation companies pay as much as 8$/Gwh for someone to take their excess low demand hours power. Don’t worry, they’re still making money.

  8. Hey Eric,
    I also loved your picture of the guy being “crucified” on the back of that old beetle. I went back to look at it and laughed out loud. I’m a Christian believer and it didn’t offend me at all. Of course I’m an old surfer from the 70’s where if I had a surfboard on the rack and a couple of bucks for gas for ‘da bug, I was good to go. Brings back memories, as I had forgotten how you had to lift up the front “hood” (trunk?) to put gas in the tank. I’m getting nostalgic now!
    Aloha, Vic

  9. One more thing to mention:

    While this whole mess started in Germany, the big hammer, at least first, came down stateside. Which is already a joke, given the importance of diesel sales in the US, even for VW, vs what it is in Europe. Similar to the US, that soccer powerhouse, going after FIFA for a supposed scandal.

    But: where was the German government in protecting one of its own from yet another rape by DC? That would have been a natural reaction, except, Merkel. Even to this day, Lower Saxony is a shareholder, so there even direct effect on a Government entity, a state, here, yet, crickets…

    That adds even more context imo

  10. the only way to stop this is to eliminate the people behind it permanently . I would take every enviro communist strip them naked throw them into a cave and forbid them to touch anything made by fuel oil gas coal. that is everything you touch they would be scrapping the ground with sticks for insects

  11. Eric, you are a genius.
    A good ol’ conspiracy theory. I think you are correct, the VDub diesels were too good and cheap, and an impediment to the one world earth religion which aims at limiting cars, travel and transportation. And getting rid of a lot of people in the process. And if you disagree with these deluded unhinged people, they practice projection by calling you are a nazi. That picture in your article of the Tesla charging stations reminds me of mini monoliths that pagans will worship at (while recharging the electric cars of course).
    Aloha, Vic

  12. Did Teslr pay for the pollution from the stupid stunt to launch a car into space?
    It has produced NOTHING!

    At least they could have made a real space craft out of it.
    A few solar panels to keep the state of the art batteries charged, cameras, some telemetry such as solar radiation, solar wind pressure, amps from the solar panels, and a ham radio repeater or two.
    And coat it all in a few inches of KClO4 to provide oxygen so the entire thing can be consumed when the batteries cook off.

    Then we can call it the new Comet.

    Spectator

  13. Maybe the point of nanny state laws, regulations, security cameras, license plate readers, checkpoints, redlight cameras, speed cameras, FBI facial and voice recognition, curfews, gun bans, searches without warrants, mandatory minimums, DNA databases, CISPA, SOPA, NDAA, IMBRA, private prison quotas, no knock raids, take down notices, no fly lists, terror watch lists, Constitution free zones, stop and frisk, 3 strikes laws, kill switches, National Security Letters, kill lists, FBAR, FATCA, Operation Chokepoint, civil forfeiture, CIA torture, NDAA indefinite detention, secret FISA courts, FEMA camps, laws requiring passports for domestic travel, IRS laws denying passports for tax debts, gun and ammo stockpiles, laws outlawing protesting, police militarization, NSA wiretapping, the end to the right to silence, free speech bans, private prisons, FOSTA, TSA groping, and Jade Helm is not to keep you safe from niggers.

    Maybe the real purpose of the police state is to protect the Jews from the 99%.

  14. Dang it Skunk I tried to reply and the “machine” lost it, in the days of high earthly temps and obscene levels of CO2, finally the cyanobacteria came on the scene and changed the atmosphere to an oxidizing one with high levels of oxygen which allowed enormous insects( foot long dragonfly anyone ?) and large creatures( warm and cold-blooded to roam the Earth) then the extinction event well after the “Cambrian explosion “of life forms, we think a large meteorite wiped out the dinosaurs, I don’t think all scientists are on board with that either( the Fundamentalists will tell you God sent a flood during the time of Noah that wiped out many lifeforms, plenty of holes in that one too) one problem with our CO2, we are adding it so dang fast with projected levels being 1000 PPM by 2100.
    I say we do need a little more science on this one rather than jealous contempt, in the end we are all responsible .

    • Kevin, you’ve fallen for the biggest shuck that has come along in recent memory. You’re right that “we do need a little more science “. Any science at all would be a blessing at this point. What has you stirred up is pseudo-science by consensus about carbon dioxide levels, which is supposed to be a manmade catastrophe.

      I hope you get help for that affliction.

      • It is utter and complete bullshit. You have to love how their projections are far enough out that nobody here is likely to be alive to check on it.

        Maybe the control-freak political hacks posing as “scientists” have learned their lesson – remember all the hysterical environmentalist predictions of doom from 40-50 years ago for what the earth would be like in the year 2000? (For a good laugh, read the original screed “The Limits To Growth”.)

        Problem is that there are so many of us who remember those predictions and how NONE of them have come to pass. Making predictions for over 80 years from now gets around that little problem.

        “We are all reponsible” — more horse crap. I accept ZERO responsibility for the garbage spewed by environmentalists and refuse to make any changes in my routine to accommodate them. Note that those pushing this agenda at the top have no problem living in huge energy-gobbling mansions, jetting all over the world for conferences, and being ferried around in big gas-guzzling SUVs.

        • Yes, it’s bullshit of the highest order. The believers love to tell about the theories of what happened millions of years ago, and then to try to state that similar changes are taking place now, but are being caused by one species on earth using a mineral substance that comes from the earth.

          I hate to see anyone fall for the whole reeking pile of what can only be described as bullshit.

      • I have noticed the Hypocripsy of Al Gore, when I confronted one of my liberal friends about Al Gores Jet travel and energy glutton lifestyle, she said”He needs the jet to get around to spread the word” I suppose a “King Air” or public transit wasn’t good enough for the “King of Green” and get this I have noticed those who shout the loudest have the “coolest hands” That one clip Al Gore made where He couldn’t reach the top of the CO2 line was ludicrous( I don’t give a hoot about where Al and Tipper have gone hiking, the only other VP that had similar mental prowess was Dan Quayle)
        On the other hand if the glacial ice sheet in Greenland melts and the “Meridional Ocean Circulation” slows ( bad news for Europe) I may have to call BS on the deniers, the only good news for Man seems that perhaps Greenlands ice sheet seems to have significant shrinkage on a 150 year cycle, meanwhile the oceans levels are rising flooding on coastal areas is becoming more commonplace,whether Man has much to do with it or not,the problem needs to be addressed. The ocean levels have risen more then 8 inches since 1880, whether Man has anything to do with it or not remains to be seen. CO2 at current and projected rates will double by 2100 AD, can we really afford to keep doing this experiment

        • Hi Kevin,

          The use of the term, “denier” is effectively the same thing as calling someone a “racist” for asking questions about, say, affirmative action. It is meant to stifle questioning by impugning the questioner. So, let’s start with the fact that “climate change” advocates want to stifle those who raise questions, rather than answer them. It ought to raise a blip on your radar…

          Next, this “climate change” business itself. It bothers me that a supposedly scientific phenomenon is described with such imprecision. That is the opposite of science.

          Consider: The “climate” is always “changing.” Thus, the term is essentially meaningless. But that is not actually true. It has a political meaning.

          The term is used to convey the idea that we – not the elites, you and I – must accept a diminished and harder life; more control and less freedom – on account of what amounts to the tribal witch doctor telling us the Sky God is angered and must be appeased.

          • Also ever notice that skeptics are people who defend the official government and establishment views on everything? The only things worthy of public skepticism are those things which do not come from the power structure.

            Real skepticism goes after the official doctrine not only as well but especially. Things have been changed in the media to defending the powers that be and only attacking those who disagree. As of note, the celebrity “scientists”.

        • Hi Kevin,

          You should notice the hypocrisy of essentially all the peddlers of “climate change.” Do you observe them reducing the size of their homes? Turning in their private jets? Some drive a Tesla… a minimum $35,000 car which is equivalent to driving at least an entry-level Lexus or BMW.

          Observe the fatuity of celebrities such as Leonardo diCaprio jetting (in his private jet) to DC, from his gated compound, to lecture us about “climate change” before jetting back to his yacht (which is the size of a small cruise ship, with attendant “carbon footprint”) for a party.

          Observe the government not doing a damned thing about its “carbon footprint.” If a C02 catastrophe is imminent, do you suppose it might be sound – at the least, setting a good example – to maybe retire one of the aircraft carrier battle groups and its hundreds of aircraft and support machinery?

          But we are supposed to bow our heads and accept restrictions on our driving and new imposition and controls… I doubt all the driving I have done in my life to date equals the “carbon footprint” of one F/A-18 punching holes through the sky in a year.

          Orwell paints a scene in Animal Farm that brilliantly conveys the truth of the thing. Some of the hungry and overworked animals approach the window to the house and look inside, where they see the pigs sitting at the dining table, enjoying a feast.

          Some animals are more equal than others…

        • “…the problem needs to be addressed.”
          Ah, there’s the rub. The climatebots can shriek all they want about the poor polar bears and I can just ignore them. But they want the state to DO SOMETHING. Translation: more theft of wealth and freedom by the useless buffoons who gave us Obamacare and Cash for Clunkers.
          If you believe climate change is going to bring hardships, then you should want people to be as wealthy as possible so they will be able to deal with those hardships if and when they occur. The best way to achieve that is through more economic liberty and less interference by the biggest wealth-destroyer known to man, the state.

          • The sheer arrogance of statists is jaw-dropping in and of itself.

            “The problem needs to be addressed.” So a perfectly natural process that has been ongoing for billions of years is now considered a “problem” which needs to be “addressed” by the State – deemed by its worshipers to be the ultimate power in the universe.

            What these hucksters are saying essentially is that the State will take control of Nature and manage the Earth’s climate. (Similar to the old Soviet belief that the State would become so powerful that it would control the very weather. Where is that all-powerful Soviet State now?)

            Why not start out a little smaller to demonstrate the awesome power and reach of the State?
            These guys say they are going to control the Earth’s climate but they can hardly even manage to put out wildfires that gush huge amounts of CO2 into the atmosphere. How about capping a few volcanoes? (Was the State able to stop the recent lava flows in Hawaii?) They want to control the Earth’s climate but they can’t even figure out how to put out the Centralia mine fire that’s been burning for decades. But they want us to believe that THEY are going to control Nature? Just how much of this horse-shit do they think people are going to swallow?

            The only thing that can be done about climate change is to adapt to it. If the long-term survival of the human race is considered a priority then we need to find a way off this rock. In the long term the Earth is doomed no matter what we do. (Unless the statists believe they will take command of the Sun’s internal processes as well.)

        • It makes it REALLY difficult to do ANYTHING about AGW (if it does exist) as long as the Deep State and globalists are still supporting weather manipulative geo-engineering efforts that retard the release of infraRed radiation back out to space from within the atmosphere.

          All that crap about increasing the Earth’s albedo was just an excuse to sell the atmospheric release of aluminum and barium salts to achieve their political end. Of course, miraculously, when they got their precious Carbon Taxes imposed, they could just halt the program and all the dim-witted Leftards would be shouting, “See, they were right.”

        • We are simply not shown the data that indicates Greenland gaining ice mass, glaciers growing, etc. What we see is cherry picked.

          But I keep it simple, just tell me when the planes parked on the ice in the 1940s reappear on the surface. Then I’ll start worrying when ice levels fall below 1940s levels. Last I heard they were 250+ feet down. (one plane was brought up and restored, a P-38, now named ‘glacier girl’)

          • It is junk science at its worst.

            Cherry-picked and fabricated data with the original data frequently “lost”, all fed into faulty computer simulations designed with unrealistic assumptions, and paid for by sociopathic entities that have a vested interest in using the flawed results to increase their power and wealth through violence and coercion.

            Remember the “Climategate” emails? Wherein it was revealed a motley band of climatologists cooked the books to make the previous 100 years look dangerously warm. These “scientists” even plotted a wholesale rewriting of history as well as science, looking to consign the Medieval Warming Period and Little Ice Age down the memory hole. Problem for them is that they do not (yet) have the control of the Party in Orwell’s “Nineteen Eighty Four” in rewriting history. The UN declaring on the web that the Middle Warming period never happened did not erase the countless schoolbooks, encyclopedias, and other scholarly sources that revealed it actually had.

            These are the kind of “scientists” behind the so-called “science” of global warming/climate change nonsense. Liars, cheats, and political hacks.

        • Ocean levels rise. Who cares? None of us can afford ocean front property anyway.

          The folks with the big carbon footprints on the other hand… They’ve got something to worry about when their million dollar mansions slide into the sea.

        • Hi Kevin,

          “…whether Man has much to do with it or not,the problem needs to be addressed.”

          The demand that “something be done” is rampant in politics and a perfect example of what Hayek termed “the fatal conceit”. Namely that a small group of elites possess the knowledge and ability to improve upon the spontaneous order of the voluntary market. There is no reason to believe that any of the plans to “fix” climate change will work, let alone prevent more damage than they cause. Even the most optimistic and unrealistic estimates used by the IPCC do not support plans for intervention. Robert Murphy has written a good deal on this: https://fee.org/articles/the-costs-of-hysteria/

          If it is important, for a healthy and sustainable environment, that energy become less carbon intensive, then the best thing to do is to leave the market alone and let it work (always the best thing to do anyway). “We” have been radically decarbonizing energy for well over 150 years, without any grand government plans. If left alone, this trend will continue, efficiently and without economic shock or immoral schemes that enrich the elite class at the expense of everyone else. Libertarians, of all people, should be aware of the danger of “plans”. First, special interests will always be involved. Second, despite the claims, the plan will always cost alot more than promised and provide far less benefit, perhaps even cause significant harm. Third, coercive plans cannot be made subject to market discipline. No matter how much it costs or how much damage it causes, there will always be powerful special interests dedicated to perpetuating the “plan”. Fourth, coercive “plans” allocate resources along politically favorable lines. This process removes resources from more efficient use, stifles innovation and perverts scientific inquiry. If it turns out to be true that “we” need to do something, then the absolute worst road to take is the adoption of political plans.

          “I may have to call BS on the deniers.”

          Who exactly are these deniers and what do they deny? This is not a snarky question. Outside of a few ill informed Gush Windbag fans, climate deniers do not exist. As Eric notes, the adoption of the term “denier” was chosen to shut off discussion and to attack the character (it is intended to associate skeptics with holocaust denialism) of anyone on the other side. Dismissing people like Judith Curry, John Christie, Freeman Dyson, Richard Lindzen, Willie Soon, Patrick Michaels, Tim Ball, etc… as “deniers” is dishonest and morally repellent. In fact, all of the prominent “deniers” are part of the much ballyhooed “consensus”, because they don’t actually deny any of the accepted science. They don’t deny the work of John Tyndall who confirmed the “greenhouse effect” and quantified the radiant heat absorption capacity of the various greenhouse gases. They don’t deny that average global temperatures have increased since the dawn of the industrial age. They don’t deny that CO2 concentration has increased or that human activity probably accounts for most of it. They don’t deny that increased CO2 concentration should lead to some warming. Skeptics question, with very good reason, the assumptions of climate sensitivity embedded in the models.

          Most models assume a range of 1.5C to 4.5C per doubling of CO2, with around 3C to be most likely. Tyndall’s work established that, everything else equal, radiative forcing due to a doubling of CO2 would cause about a 1C increase in average temperature. Thus, all of these models assume a net positive feedback mechanism due to increased CO2 concentration. Skeptics assume a roughly net neutral feedback mechanism. It is important to note that without the existence of a significant net positive feedback loop, increased CO2 levels pose no harm to the earth or to human and animal life. If the skeptics are right in asserting that positive and negative feedback mechanisms mostly cancel each other, then human activity cannot increase CO2 concentration to anything even approaching dangerous levels. So far, the raw temperature record strongly supports the lower/net neutral assumptions of the skeptics much more than the strong positive feedback assumptions of the alarmists.

          Interestingly, it is certain that the degree of certainty claimed by the alarmists is not supported by the evidence. “We” are not even certain about the temperature record, let alone what will happen 100 years from now or what the results or costs of any attempts to “fix” the problem will be. Until recently, 1934 was the hottest year on record. It lost that distinction not because of the existence of unambiguously hotter years, but because of recent adjustments made to the temperature record. Likewise, the recent “pause” has been explained away by adjustments to the temperature record. Please note, I do not claim that the many, recent adjustments are intentionally fraudulent. In fact, I think the tendency of skeptics to assert malfeasance and conspiracy on the part of the alarmists is lamentable and mostly wrong. Sure, opportunistic douche-bags like Al Gore and George Soros exist, and are almost certainly operating in bad faith. But for most of the scientists, self interest, institutional incentives and confirmation bias provide a much better explanation for what will probably be one day viewed as a kind of mass delusion than back door skullduggery.

          To those not such afflicted, it should be obvious that the science is nowhere near the level of certainty required to seriously contemplate the kind of coercive plans envisioned by the political elites. If climate change is a problem, then a wealthier, freer society will be best equipped to deal with it. Every Malthusian prognostication has been proven wrong, CAGW will not be the exception.

          “CO2 at current and projected rates will double by 2100 AD, can we really afford to keep doing this experiment?”

          CO2 concentration is currently at a little over 400ppm. The doubling you speak of is based on the pre-industrial level of about 280ppm. So, can we afford to be blase about a projected CO2 concentration of 560ppm by the end of the century. Yes, we can. What we can’t afford is indulging the fatal conceit of planners, politicians and self-described do-gooders who would have us believe that only they can save the world.

          Cheers,
          Jeremy

          • Alright Guys you have more or less tried to be Civil I appreciate this, but I have been in the trenches all my life and have seen what a GD mess plastic is making of the places people frequent , I have seen the temperature average increase( the roads don’t disintergrate here in th Winter thaw like they used to , the sea level is rising, I really don’t know how many species of trees are migrating toward the higher elevations now. Butternut trees used to grow around my elevation now there are only sickly specimens left at elevations 1000 ft higher, the Hickory trees have taken a hit,Spruce trees seem to be getting sickly ,the Eastern Hemlocks( left over from the last Ice age) will soon be extinct and there are other species dying out for various reasons.Where Man goes and propers nature usually takes a big hit if it wasn’t for regulation things would be a hell of a lot worse, nuisance plant species are thriving , different insects are overwintering , etc.
            With the projected increase in CO2 , by 2100 it will be at 1000ppm , because all these really populated places have people that want and deserve a better way of life, we will see .
            If left to their own devices the markets will go for the cheap and easy,I met a pristine 62 Chevy Sedan on the road today, let me tell you this that car literally stank. I have a feeling that if let run slipshod the trucks and autos would be like these young and not so young Guys in those everloving Diesel Pickups “Rolling Coal”, the local Truck club (I guess it was ) left the Funeral Home in a formerly Quiet little town(McDowell ,VA) raising Hell with their Diesel Pickups burning the road black, in “tribute to somebody or the other” some respect.I warn these Guys now who are stripping all the emissions equipment from their rigs to hold on to it, because there will be a reckoning(A company in Harrisonburg, about to go broke a few years ago because of the fines and not complying with the emissions laws when they had to put the emissions equipment back on their Rigs( They had350 HP 2 valve Diesels that would run with the 500 HP ones, they were turned up so much. Crap like that is a crime against Humanity , never look for a market to solve anything , the only time that happens is when serendipity occurs when a new machine comes along that is cheaper and better.

            You Guys make Good arguments and the other side makes good arguments , go to the local landfills and kick some oil bottles and diapers around and say to yourself “Wow .we really have a handle on things” go to the Gulf and get some self basting shrimp, go visit the plastic Island, go to China on a smoggy day and marvel at the clean coal they burn.
            We will not run out of most resources( if we have to we will drag Nickle -Iron asteroids from asteriod belt and mine them.As always we will find new ways to get to the dregs left in oil wells and mine tailings, somewhere along the line is somebody going to say,” Could there possibly be too many of us?”
            When you really feel feisty go tour the local sewage disposal plant , go check on the guys in third world countries trying to eke a living recycling the plastic and electronic throw away junk we discard.
            Everything is not” Mall of the Americas” and please move over someone else wants to share your hectares.
            This is my last rant ,I quit , there is bad science on all three sides.

            • Yeah, you might as well quit, kevin. You aren’t making any converts and these long rants are tedious. I hope you get over this phase before you stroke out from all the stress you’re under.

              • Hi Ed,

                The armed government worker pointed a loaded gun at a group of kids – no different than pointing a loaded gun at a crowd of people only worse because kids. The bastard couldn’t even say: that kid was a “threat” to my “safety.” What he did was criminally reckless at the least. If the gun had discharged, someone could easily have been killed – a random victim.

                But these goons are “trained.”

                • I think people would be surprised how LITTLE training most police have received with firearms.

                  Most cops have a difficult time staying “qualified” with firearms. And that is for rules that have been cut back quite a bit.

                  SWAT teams are likely the only ones that get regular arms training. Most suburban departments and even urban ones probably leave it to the individual cops to do training. So some probably do none.

                  The average hunter is a far better shot, I would think. They actually practice shooting, and most are very safety conscience.

                  Frankly most cops shouldn’t be armed with guns.

            • Kevin, an argument cannot be good if it is a lie. Which side has been proven to be lying about the “science” behind their argument?

              Your argument is a busy body’s argument with the typical and noticeable indifference for Truth.

              Not to mention the hypocrisy that always accompanies the arguments of there-ought-to-be-a-law shrills (Clovers). The do-gooders cry out, “There are too many people!” – yet somehow there is always just enough of them.

              The piously nosey’s use of products and the pollution that is the inevitable result of any consumption is “just enough” while everyone else’s is “too much”.

            • Hi Kevin,

              Where to begin?

              Plastics/garbage not disposed of properly have nothing to do with “climate change.” Unpleasant, obnoxious – certainly. But irrelevant to the subject at hand. You mention your personal/anecdotal observations about trees growing differently – which may be accurate but that says nothing about the validity of “climate change.” Speaking of which:

              I have already explained that “climate change” is an inherently unscientific term because it is a meaningless term. The “climate” is always “changing.” Irrespective of human activity.

              So, how do you fact-check such a thing? You can’t. It is a loaded-dice term. This ought to arouse your suspicions. “Climate change” can mean literally anything – and so it means precisely nothing. Well,nothing scientific. It is a political term.

              Which is why it should be rejected out of hand by thinking people.

              C02 is a trace gas – and not even the most potent “greenhouse” gas. Objective data (ice core air samples, the geological record) also inform us that C02 levels have fluctuated wildly over time and long before humans could have had anything to do with it.

              It is asserted that C02 levels are increasing unnaturally and dangerously. It is asserted that this increase is due to human activity. It is asserted that the “change” will be catastrophic.

              None of these assertions have been established as fact.

              Yet we – not the elites, you and I and the rest of the “little people” – are supposed to accept “wrenching” (AlGore’s term) change – meaning, heightened control, higher cost of living, diminished liberty for ourselves – for the sake of what amount to highly questionable assertions sold using egregiously demagogic language.

              Note also, in this regard, that any who dare raise serious, thoughtful questions are shouted down as “deniers.” Another demagogic use of language intended to intimidate people and stifle debate. It is used exactly as “racism” is used to shut up critics of race-based quotas and so on.

              It should bother any reasonable, fair-minded person.

            • The plastic trash in the oceans comes primarily from poor nations and China. Those nations that environmentalists largely leave alone on CO2 and everything else.

              But physical waste is a real issue, one of several which are ignored because they don’t offer the sort of political power that CO2 does.

            • Hi Kevin,

              The two traits that seem to be shared by the eschatologically obsessed, whether secular or religious, is a static understanding of resource distribution and a contempt or inability to recognize the spontaneous cooperation that occurs naturally when people are left alone. Thus, they tend to be pessimistic about the future and believe that “our” only hope is the adoption of some grand central plan, of course devised and administered by people such as themselves.

              Another striking commonality of those such afflicted is that they are always wrong, they never learn and they never admit that they were wrong. Your concern for the environment seems genuine and commendable, but the relative importance you place on CAGW (catastrophic anthropogenic global warming) theory is irrational and counter productive. Any sane and honest assessment of the various plans to “fix” global warming show how foolish it is to divert most of the resources spent on the environment from tangible problems (pollution, contaminated drinking water, primitive, dirty energy sources in the third world, etc…), which can be addressed, especially if done privately through voluntary charities, to mitigation of global warming.

              One of the advantages of CAGW hysteria, for the elites, is that the “problem”, according to them, cannot be addressed locally and spontaneously, it must be a global effort. This should scare the hell out of anyone who is not bamboozled by the claimed selflessness and benevolent vision of “our rulers”. It is extremely unlikely that any of the various plans (cap and trade, carbon credits, subsidies for carbon offset, solar, wind, etc…) will produce benefits that even remotely justify the costs. But, based on history and sound economic/political theory, we can be reasonably certain of the following:
              – The implementation of the plans will further empower and enrich the already rich and powerful.
              – The greatest burden/cost of the plans will be borne by the poorest and least powerful.
              – Funding, both practical and theoretical, will be allocated along political lines and thus be immune to market discipline.
              – Special interest groups that profit from the plans, will thwart any attempt to scuttle them, no matter how obvious it is that the plans are failing.
              – These special interests will always have an asymmetric advantage due to the fact that government plans always confer concentrated benefits to a few and spread the costs over the many.
              – The plans will produce an opportunity cost that will almost certainly cause the delay of cleaner, less damaging energy production.

              You seem to dismiss the voluntary market with these words: “If left to their own devices the markets will go for the cheap and easy”. This, of course, is what the Ralph Nader’s and government control advocates tell us. But, it’s simply not true. Left to it’s own devices, the market will relentlessly pursue opportunities by attempting to meet individual desires and needs. In addition, some market players will relentlessly pursue their own vision, hoping that others will eventually value it, and create products that they believe will improve the world. Both of these, the profit maximizing pragmatist and the idealistic visionary, exist. In a truly free market, the actions of both are channeled toward “the good”. In the regulated, subsidized, planned world you seem to believe is necessary, at least for the CAGW problem, the pragmatist usually co-opts the idealist, and all of us suffer because of it.

              Finally, your oft repeated claim that CO2 concentration will reach 1,000 ppm by 2100 seems to be based on one paper by Jeff Kiehl. Based on history, theory and common sense, his assertions should be treated with extreme skepticism. His conclusion, 16° C warming by 2100, is so extreme that it should cause sane people to laugh, rather than be concerned.

              The catastrophic claims made by James, “The Oceans will Boil” Hansen https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ACHLayfA6_4 (the real fun starts at 1:55) and others seems to rest on the supposed inevitability of runaway global warming. Thus, all the talk of “tipping points”, which somehow get passed without incident.

              I have a sincere question, one I’ve asked before and that has never been answered adequately. Why are we still here? The alarmist proposition asserts that our ecosystem is highly sensitive and subject to runaway positive feedback. Such a system is inherently unstable. Some evidence suggests the CO2 concentration has been over 7,000 ppm. Yet, we’re still here?

              Final observation: if the ecosystem is as sensitive as the extreme alarmists claim, we’re already doomed. Might as well relax and have as much fun as we can before the end. If, however, the ecosystem is far more resilient and stable than the alarmists assume, we should concern ourselves, if we are so inclined, with what we can do to make our own lives, and those around us, a little better. Those who wish to save the world are terrifying. As usual, Mencken had it right: “The urge to save humanity is almost always only a false-face for the urge to rule it. Power is what all messiahs really seek: not the chance to serve. This is true even of the pious brethren who carry the gospel to foreign parts”.

              Cheers,
              Jeremy

              • I was on the verge of quitting this site completely( as I done to several others, when the Trolls rule, the difference on this site being, the posters while stubborn are good people that do not resort to name calling and belittling)
                My considered views come from experience and believe it or not research, one thing that jumps out at you is the loudest arguments, mask the biggest lies and half truths. We know good and well the oceans will not boil and I cant be happy that the runaway greenhouse on Venus was totally caused by CO2 and Sulphuric acid, another subject.
                The hardest people to deal with are usually the “Fruitbats and treehuggers” that have never did an honest days work in their lives.According to them it is alright to throw a oily greasy rag in a landfill(where it can eventually affect the water, but it is not alright to burn it in a hot fire- apparently the concept of “Photodissociation”, is Alien to them ,thats right the Sun tends to purify the atmosphere itself .
                Thank you for your reasonable, thoughtful reply.
                One thing I do want to stress there are ways that a tipping point in the CO2 can be reached, but it will only be so much, the figures are in since the beginning of the Industrial revolution, Co2 levels have been rising a lot faster, one of the tipping points for more CO2 would be the warming of the Muskeg and Tundra , there is apparently a fair amount of CO2 sequestered there, I guess one reason Gore and His ilk picked CO2 for our woes was because there is a direct correlation between Mans activities and a rising level of CO2 in the air and I seriously doubt that the small fraction is going to have such a dramatic effect on the environment, maybe the warming at the Poles is a temporary thing who really knows.If all the ice melting just causes a sea level rise, we can deal with that( 80 percent of the Worlds population lives rather close to the coasts) maybe its time to start Homesteading again rather than letting all that land set idle with no tax revenue from it
                There is a lot to say and a lot of Gray ,
                to all the Sojourners, Kevin

                • I was taught that correlation is not the equivalent of causation. The environment is an extremely complex system with many sub-systems (man’s activities being one of them).

                  But I think you are correct in this sense: they chose it because the graphs showing correlation will be interpreted by the average guy as proof of causation.

                • Kevin, “… maybe its time to start Homesteading again rather than letting all that land set idle with no tax revenue from it.”

                  Wow! Thus is the mindset of the collectivist.

                  • No Skunk , collectivist hardly, my beef is all the land the “Feds ” seized,I think it should be in private hands,I think it was during the “Thirties”, I could be wrong . The Gov’t came through and basically seized all the high ground( what is their obsession with high ground?) it was called the “Big Survey” and remember what the Feds did to the generational people living in the way of the”Skyland Drive” or Blueridge Parkway, they declared them backwards “Hollow Folk” and relocated them, Collectivism ,Hell no! If the land was in private hands there could be many benefits for all parties and I am not talking about a “collective ” for a bunch of anarchist Hippies( not that there is anything wrong with being a Hippie) to squat on.
                    I am opposed to the government seizing everything for the “good of the people” and benefitting no one , except special interest.

                    • Kevin, I agree the feds should not own that land and having it in private hands instead. But I vigorously disagree with you that it should be put in private hands so that it can then be taxed. This is the same mindset of so-called “limited government conservatives” who say pot should be legalized so that it can then be taxed like hell. That is the mark of a collectivist.

                    • Hi Skunk,

                      Yup. Collective ownership is what the Soviets – the Soviet elite – practiced. There was no private property; the individual owned nothing. Unless the individual happened to be the dictator, who controlled everything – and so effectively owned it. Federal/government ownership just means the government – the government bureaucrats – control it, and so they effectively own it.

                    • Skunk that is the carrot on the stick , I hate friggin taxes( we will never be rid of them) taxes only mean we are not really the owner of anything and where is the freedom of this( collectivism, hell no)-Kevin

                • Hi Kevin,

                  “My considered views come from experience and believe it or not research”.

                  I don’t doubt this at all, as do mine. The result of this research is that I cannot know what the climate will be like 100 years from now (nor can anyone else), but I am certain that the claimed levels of certainty are simply not justified. It also seems obvious to me that the root cause of this extreme exaggeration of certainty is not due to genuine concern for the environment, but out of a desire to transform the political and economic systems of the world.

                  Please understand, this criticism is directed toward the political and financial elite, who will profit greatly from such a transformation. I believe that most scientists and concerned laymen are operating in good faith. I just disagree with the alarmist claims. Unfortunately, I cannot extend this courtesy to the likes of Phil Jones, James Hansen, Michael Mann, John Cook, etc… Of course, I mistrust any politician calling for “urgent action”.

                  As with anyone else, my bias informs my beliefs. I am much more afraid of the
                  government response to the supposed threat, than the threat itself. I try to be aware of this.

                  Kind Regards,
                  Jeremy

    • Kevin, “I say we do need a little more science on this one rather than jealous contempt, in the end we are all responsible .”

      I have no idea what you mean by “jealous contempt”. But it is nonsense to say we are all responsible. That is the utter bullshit that is at the core of the so-called “climate change” propaganda. The real goal of CC is to tax human beings simply for existing. It is the Globalist’s wet dream.

      “Science” has nothing to do with CC. It is all about control.

      • I know there are workers and Chiefs, I have been around too many Chiefs on the power trip and I do not go there now.I would sooner be happy with little, rather than a wage slave with the latest shiny unaffordable geegaw.
        You all say its about control,Dan right it is , after awhile more money is meaningless, the pleasure of power is immeasurable.
        Zorro Plateado( perhaps I will join Tor)

      • Skunk, We all contribute to the whole,some more than others, did Mr Peabody really give two shits about the people getting BlackLung , do you think the Mountain top removal advocates really care about what they are doing? We all benefit from cheap energy and raw materials , there is a cost.

        • Anon, if Mr Peabody did not give two shits about people getting Black Lung, do you really think the Mr Peabodies running the world today give two shits about the environment either?! It is all about taxing and controlling people. It is one big con.

  15. I wish VW would just give Uncle the finger and pull out of the US market completely, not pay another nickel in trumped up fines, and let everyone know they’re mad as hell and not going to take it anymore. If they hired a good PR firm they could make it clear that all the resulting job losses were entirely due to Uncle’s meddling.

  16. Sad that the VW lawyers did not pick up on this and ask for all the certificates that proved the diesels passed state regulations, which would have created a conflict between state and fed rules, which could then have been used for a not guilty verdict. And I wager that the VW lawyers fees are in the $10K per hour range and they could not come up with a way to defend the company. Liars for hire for sure.

  17. Eric, I don’t know about the roadside sniffers in California, but my understanding is that sniffers in other states did detect excess emissions from newer VW diesels driving by. I’ve heard Colorado mentioned as one of those states. The owners would receive summonses to have their cars tested, but the cars would then pass in the shop because of the cheating software, so the owner was off the hook.

    At least one other car manufacturer (not the one for whom I work) that was testing VW diesel models concluded before the scandal broke that VW had to be cheating somehow, so this wasn’t necessarily just a government jihad against diesels. It all sure played into the bureaucrats’ hands, though.

    • Excess emissions of what? What is the background level of the emissions that are supposedly in excess? What is the limit of background emissions? Are there other sources of said emissions nearby? Like a fast food joint, an industrial plant, an automotive repair shop, a building full of government bureaucraps?

      • Joeallen, I shake my head about the Entire carbon debate, CO2 and particulate.

        For instance, it’s a fact the the Ring of Fire (thanks JC) has been increasingly active for at least a couple decades. It’s also fact that a single event such as Mt. St Helens put more CO2 into the atmosphere than 100 years or more of “man made” sources. And since volcanic activity never stops on this planet I don’t see how anyone could claim to know the source of it all

        No doubt “some people” will say they have a good estimate of just that one active volcano in Hawaii whether their guess is even remotely accurate or not.

        There are more variables here than a climate changer wants to admit.

        It was deemed Global Warming before the criminals at NASA and the NWS were caught falsify data for worldwide temperature.

        Now indications show just the opposite might be true although I can only attest to west Tx weather patterns which certainly don’t seem to be in a cooling cycle but other places have had record cold.

        I’m blaming it all on climate change since that’s what the fuckin climate does and has always done.

        To take an accurate description of a natural event is as duplicitous as that same crowd who would lay so racist moniker on me for being an old white man.

        If anyone is ever in west Tx drop by and I’ll give you a tour of my slave facilities on Google Earth.

        Ah shit, never mind. I just realized that was my house. Well, when I locate any other slaves besides the wife and I, I’ll be sure to give tours. In the meantime anyone who has a problem with me can KMA……

        • 8S back when I went to college in the mid 70s all the talk was about the coming ice age. Now it is about warming. The science community with the exception of geologists has endorsed this scam by manipulating data, and by having no history of written weather patterns. If you call 40 years out of 5 billion a dataset. Scientists are just as prone to scams as anyone else, maybe more so. Glad I got out of the science field. It was once a noble venture, but now I see so few honest scientists, in any field of science. Weather is as weather will be.

          • Hi Joe!

            One of the synergies at work is, I think, the very short attention span of most Americans and their poor memory. Like you, I remember the Ice Age talk; then the warming talk. Both became absurd in the face of data – so now we have the catch-all, “climate change.” Which is genius, actually – because it encompasses everything. No worries about having to rebrand now!

            • Eric, when I was a college freshman in 1970, I had an excellent biology instructor who unfortunately was also an overpopulation nutcase. Paul Ehrlich’s “The Population Bomb” was required reading.
              The Chicken Littles never apologize; they just scold us for being too stupid to recognize that the sky really did fall.
              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Population_Bomb#Predictions
              Every day my biology instructor wore a button on his lapel that said “Stop at Two,” meaning don’t have more than two kids. When he and his wife had their second child, it turned out to be twins!

              • Recently the media has been declaring that the alarmists on ‘global warming’ were correct yet they were very very wrong. But it takes effort to know they were wrong. The media won’t bring up all the papers, interviews, and more where they dead wrong let alone the adjustments they do just to salvage something out of it.

  18. Pacific Gas and Electric announced plans to cut power to thousands of people to prevent wildfires.

    https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-07-06/pge-plans-cut-electricity-some-california-residents-prevent-wildfires

    So the government utility that you are required to use, kills power to the grid leaving you unable to charge the electric vehicle that government mandated that you buy, rendering you unable to comply with the government mandated evacuation order to get out of the danger zone of a wildfire that was caused in part by government logging and cutting policies.

    I guess you would call this a “Catch 88”?

    • Well, that just means you need to buy solar panels. And a Tesla wall. Inefficiency be damned!

      As far as capacity costs go, the Department of Energy estimates residential capacity prices to be around $3.10 per watt, while utility-scale solar is only $2.20 per watt. That picture may even be too rosy, as the Energy Information Administration’s estimated overnight capital costs for utility solar are around $2.60 per watt, and wind power is around $1.80 per watt. When you further consider that rooftop solar is less productive per watt than utility-scale solar or wind, that cost-effectiveness is even worse.

      http://dailycaller.com/2018/05/17/mandating-rooftop-solar-power-will-cause-more-harm-than-good/

  19. This really chaps my ass knowing now that these states are using their part of the loot to subsidize electric infrastructure. Just when you think it couldn’t get any worse. Bastards.

    Well, I can provide a bit of good news regarding VW’s TDIs. I went to drive a Passat TDI several weeks ago and had a long discussion with the boys at the dealership (fantastic car by the way, in my opinion). Apparently they are reintroducing a lot of these cars that were bought on the buyback program back onto dealer lots. We all know about the large stash of them in the CA desert but there are also huge lots of them in Chicago and Detroit apparently. They of course have to get the software “fix” for VW to sell them. The new window stickers reflect this “fix” and I believe they dropped 2 mpg from the original rating (but as most here know, these TDI’s get better than advertised MPG anyway). But VW dealerships are starting to get more of them on their lots.

    And VW really wants you to buy one! They were offering 24 months/unlimited mileage warranty on the whole car (it was certified). And a $500 some dollar giftcard plus the first months payment. And they’re financing was cheaper than even my (and other’s) C.U.’s at 2.49%. I didn’t pull the trigger due to my own financial circumstances but I will be most likely in the near future (probably going to go with a Golf Sportwagen TDI now though). It was an interesting conversation and a bit of some good news. Which is few and far between these days.

    • c_dub250,

      Hope my reply helps you, and others, understand what VW is doing with those cars. I had one of the affected “cheaters”–a 2012 VW Golf TDI. Traded it in (buyback) for a 2015 Golf Sportwagen TDI–“fixed”. The newer TDIs had the ad blue. So all they had to do was tweak the software and the car is fixed. Nothing mechanically, as far as I know, was done to the engines.

      These “fixed” cars are fetching a premium (I’ve had the same conversations at the dealership as well), and are very likely going up in price as they become more rare. You found one? You may want to take a chance on it. I had to drive 4.5 hours to get what I wanted–a manual.

      However, they are not getting less mileage. Well, at least mine is not. It’s still advertised 43mpg HWY. I think I’m getting more than that. They have also thrown in an extended two mile warranty with unlimited miles as you have stated. That came after my purchase, but was much appreciated.

      If you do consider getting one, I suggest that you get the SE model as opposed to the S (ie: heated seats, and fog lamps), and check the date/tread of the tires as well as the level of ad blue. If anything, check the ad blue. I was assured it was done–full…not even close (the saleman was too trusting of the mechanics…but I still should have double-checked). The downside to these models, in my opinion, is that they have keyless entry. Lastly, check the storage space under the back. There are storage compartments there as well as a 115v outlet and a DC port next to it (the Alltracks do not have this feature). And although there is no full sized spare, the tire compartment will accept one.

      Hope this helped and recommend you get one. Gasoline lines will always be longer than the diesel lines when the SHTF.

      • Hi Frenchy,

        Thanks for the info. You’re correct in that it is just a matter of a software tweak to appease uncle and these are good to go. I too want a Sportwagen with the manual. I was only stating what the sales guy told me in that they had to put updated window stickers on these cars which stated a 2-3 mpg decrease in mpg’s. Why that is or if it’s just because of the software fix I can’t recall exactly. I’m glad to hear you’re still getting that great mileage these are known for as that is the biggest selling point for me.

        They are fetching a premium but I don’t know if it will really be that hard to find what I want. They can just keep reintroducing more and more of them if they keep selling, which they are. Maybe they are creating an artificial demand but controlling how many they release back on the market? Who knows but I live within reasonable driving distance of what I understand is the country’s #1 dealer for these reintroduced TDI’s. This dealership currently has 12 TDI Passat’s and 4 TDI Sportwagens, all with a manual. They keep getting more in all the time.

        I will for sure be going with an SE at minimum, preferably an SEL if I can find one. I will benefit from the heated seats/mirror/wiper package. The panoramic sunroof on these is quite cool as well. And I think they’re a really good looking car as well. It’s too bad we can’t get a TDI Alltrack here now. Damn you uncle.

        Question, do you tow with yours? If so what hitch did you use? I’ve heard the European style hitches are superior than what is available on the aftermarket here but are more expensive and then there’d be the cost of shipping to boot.

  20. Diesels are the worst for centralized control. A person can make his own fuel for them. That too is cheaper than putting together the sort of solar array it takes to charge an electric.

    • Brent P, at least I do not think there is a restriction on homemade bio-diesel yet.I looked at a Friends bio-diesel setup ( a little more cost and complexity than one might first imagine- not sure if He still does it or not, used cooking oil is rather scarce in the boonies) I remember back in the late eighties when we had a November cold snap , Diesels were stalling everywhere
      If you want to go the home fuel route Alcohol isn’t that hard to make( was that trip necessary ?) of course the Feds do not approve.Home brew fuel usually does not have the additive package that top tier consumer fuels have.

      • Hi Kevin,

        They pursue homebrew as tax evasion… of motor fuels taxes. If you make it for yourself, you may be ok – especially if you make it quietly.

      • Pay attention to Eric’s warning.

        Recently around the US, more than one person who had been collecting used cooking oil from burger joints, running it in his diesel car, and talking with his local media about how he was helping the environment ended up taken to court and fined over unpaid motor fuels taxes. One was pursued for serious charges of (something like) not having a license to manufacture fuel (I think Eric covered this one a few years ago).

        Beware. Like preppers stockpiling weapons and supplies for bad times ahead, if you power your diesel with used cooking oil, keep quiet about it.

        • Motorist; “Why am I being stopped”

          Officer Bar Brady; “Because your exhaust smells like french fries. Can I see your motor fuel tax papers please?”

          • Hi Guerrero,

            It took me awhile to figure it out; then I noticed the common thread running through all of this stuff: Control and money. Every time. It’s a mathematical axiom, almost.

            • Eric,

              Just figured it out myself as well. Power/control, and money. These are the gods of these people. We need to attack their gods. Shame, and a PITA, that we should have to do so.

      • In the people’s republic of Illinois the state sends out revenuers and then demands all sorts of fuel manufacturing bonds and licenses on top of the taxes on the fuel made. It all comes to five to six figures. The only way to do it is make sure nobody knows you’re doing it.

        And of course ethanol manufacture has its own various regulations and having a vehicle that tolerates it properly is more technically involved.

  21. Great article. I was bristling when I read about this in Automotive News this morning. They should change their name to “Automotive News for people who hate cars.”

    I was expecting comment from you, and you didn’t disappoint.

    Here’s the rub with electrics. Directly from Tesla:

    “Charging your Tesla is easy and convenient wherever you normally park—at home, your workplace or around the city. … A Tesla Wall Connector installed on a 60 amp / 240 volt circuit breaker will achieve the maximum charge rate of 11.5 kW for 75 kWh configured vehicles.”

    This is 11.5 kW. And it still takes hours, uninterrupted.

    Even the largest and most inefficient residential central A/C units (5 ton) draw less than 35A at 240 V. This is 8.4 kW (actually lower, but I’m not splitting hairs).

    So a Tesla that sucks 11.5 kW is a “zero emissions vehicle” but my central A/C unit that sucks 73% what Tesla sucks (and is on intermittently) is causing climate change. Same for my incandescent lights.

    Sorry – my A/C unit is a “zero emissions cooling device” from now on. Same for my incandescent lights that are being banned (I stocked up).

    I might buy a Class A amplifier just because I can. They are not banned – yet, but are much less efficient that class AB, or even less so than class D.

    There is zero – and I mean zero credibility left in the environmental movement.

    What is sad is I know quote a few people (who have engineering degrees and should know better) who buy into all this crap hook, line and sinker.

    It’s nice to know that not everybody does.

    • Thanks, Blake!

      Your point about the amp draw of home AC (vs. the draw to charge an electric) car) is an important one in view of the fact – as most here are well aware – that we’re already hectored about “conserving” energy at home by not using AC or using it less; that in some areas, there are or have been calls to restrict the use of high-draw items such as AC during peak demand … and of course, we are also lectured about the “carbon footprint” of these household accessories.

      But people – many of them – seem unable to hold two related facts together in their minds and establish correlation. Or divine a principle and apply it to a particular thing.

      They are becoming almost literally what Orwell referred to when he talked about Duckspeakers, which he explained constituted both a term of abuse and of praise. Directed toward an enemy, someone who held a heretical view, it was a term of abuse – a way to simply dismiss whatever that person said as mindless sound, the quacking of a duck. But it was also praise – when directed toward mindless cheering of orthodoxy…

  22. My area (NW Indiana) is wasting the settlement money on buses. Buses that even poor people won’t ride. You see them all the time, with few or no people on them.

    If anything we should be getting rid of the buses we have instead of adding to them. The few riders could be given uber…….

    • We have the same problem in Australia with buses. No one in their right mind rides them. These big smoke belching vehicles, and yes they really do belch smoke, are seen with 1 or 2 people in them, unless there is a problem with the trains or tracks. And the buses hold up the rest of the road traffic as they drive along at 20 km below the speed limit. For saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety sake, puke please!

  23. Honestly the Tesla is a good car and capable of far more than 150 miles, but its no greener than the VW diesel the Electricity has to come from somewhere,Case in Point the coal burning powerplant, Coal is not “clean ‘ and never will be and as far as I know most of the current on the Grid comes from burning that stuff.
    So if your electric car is not charged with wind, solar , Hydro or Nuclear, its going to still be responsible for junking up the atmosphere.If the CO2 levels hit 1000 ppm by 2100 were are going to see major consequences, now it seems that peoples brains are affected when CO2 hits that mark,probably more evident than the nanoparticles that Clean Diesels emit, science is not on our side on this one, just when everybody is happy and making money.,( as always) somebody is screwing the Pooch, the question is can we tolerate and live with changes increased atmospheric pollution entails?( Looks like We are going to have to do it) If the fresh water diluting the saline balance in the ocean , stalls the Gulf Stream, much of Europe will be a lot colder and if the tropics get more torrid, there are going to be hell to pay as the heat balance tries to moderate( what if we got a more or less stationary permanent low- pressure storm on the tropics sort of like Jupiters Red Spot?) We keep dumping garbage in the atmosphere we are probably going to find out.
    I would say the problem with our beloved chariots is the fact that there are too many of them , rather than not being clean enough.

    • Hi Kevin,

      I dispute the Tesla being a good car – on the following indictment:

      * It is obscenely overpriced and heavily heavily subsidized.
      * It is functionally impaired in several ways.
      * It is poorly designed (e.g., a single large touchscreen that is inherently distracting to use if the driver is actually driving) and both prone to catching fire and more vulnerable to catching fire because of the way its batteries are distributed (an impact from almost any angle presents a fire hazard).

      Those are well-established.

      In addition, the build quality (fit and finish) is very poor; if any other car company built cars to Tesla’s low standard, they’d be pilloried by the mainstream car press.

      • I imagine a real nice Lexus would cost about as much as a Tesla and the people that are buying these things seem happy with them.
        Is your real Beef the fact that Musk is not really making a car for the “Prolateriat’?
        Getting into the automotive business is real hard these days , I remember decades ago reading of Bricklins DeLoreans. etc. Most had to suffer the fate of Tucker, all big companies have had their “paws” in politics for scores of years , for thr the most part , we the public have become maggots pulsing against our neighbor on the carcass of innovation only allowing a few to become Flys.
        I read (more or less) the Critigue on “Eyes wide shut” I think the real message is , if you are rich you can get by with most anything and the serfs will continue to feed the wprsippers of ‘Mammon” and “Promethus”( could you not say Satan was the first Libertarian ?)

        • Hi Kevin,

          My beef – one of them – is the subsidization of high-end luxury-sport sedans that happen to be electric. Why not pay people to live in 6,000 sq. foot McMansions that have “energy efficient” windows while we’re at it?

          If an electric car isn’t less costly to own and drive than an IC car, then there is no economical or practical reason to buy one. In which case, they are costly indulgences. And there is nothing wrong with a costly indulgence… provided the person indulging is the one paying!

          It is telling that EVs – Teslas especially – tout technology, luxury, performance… because they can’t tout economy or practicality. In every way except speed and flashiness and gadget-ness, a $14,000 Hyundai is superior as a means of transport than a $40,000 Tesla.

          Which is why EVs remain toys for the affluent at the expense of everyone else.

          Which is also why defenders bring up the “climate change” and carbon dioxide “emissions” arguments. The problem – one of them – is that electricity production generates plenty of C02 and therefore, EVs also “contribute to climate change.” Probably, they “contribute” more to it, since the typical electric car touts power/speed and so uses more energy than say a subcompact IC economy car with a 1 liter or so engine that is capable of 50-plus MPG.

          That car can also travel much farther than any EV – and refuels in a literal fraction of the time, almost anywhere.

          • Who subsidizes the similarly priced Lexus and Infiniti models? I would imagine it isn’t awfully hard to find a G50 priced in the Model 3 Price range( they start at 35 K-Musk may have fibbed on the base Model 3, seems they are pushing the models that run a little over 40K) One thing that the EV has on the Fossil Fuel powered car is that the EV will never require most of the expensive and hard to get rid of petroleum products, these beasts need changed on a regular basis.
            Go watch the Nova show on rechargeable batteries, you will get to see the worlds largest ” storage battery” in my Home county. You do not have to like EVs, plenty of other Folks do( I like the idea of a vehicle that all you have to do is fuel and ride) I will not miss hot synthetic Pennzoil running down my arm.
            Think I said the coal burning powerplants make plenty of CO2, renewables are the wave of the future( King Coal is dead, long live the King!- a little ridge in Appalachia thanks you .) CO2 affects many living things,its going to be a funny sight to run the ice free Northwest passage.

            • Have you seen the acid extraction ponds in China for the rare earth metal those toy cars require, Clover? No pollution there, right?

              And as a real scientist, I have to LOL at you watermelons who actually believe and promote the Gorebull warming scam

          • One reason used to push electric cars is the fact that they outsource pollution from high density cities and suburbs to the boonies (where power plants are usually located) and thus reduce the number of people impacted.

            • Hi Escher,

              I’ve never heard that one! In fact, all I ever hear is that EVs are “zero emissions” – which of course is as accurate as using the pronoun she to describe Bruce Jenner in a dress with his dick cut off.

      • You’re assuming CO² controls Earth’s temperature – which it doesn’t. In the past, temperatures have been lower with higher CO² than today and higher with less CO² than today. The warming the Earth is experiencing now (which is miniscule) is natural and has occurred before. There is nothing unusual happening now which has not happened in the past – that is unless you believe the scientists funded by the Government and private industries which are salivating over the profits and taxes they stand to make if their futile schemes to reduce CO² in the atmosphere are forced on the public.

        • The Sun wasn’t quite as bright in those days either. CO2 affects many other things besides helping to regulate the temperature, the oceans are becoming more acidic which will more than likely affect the”Shellfish” Even here in VA the CO2 has affected the spawning of fish in the National parks that have ‘Freestone” watershed/ they have had to add lime to the streams to buffer the acidity caused by the acidic runoff. Anything Man does affects the Biosphere.

          • Environmentalists are some of the worst anti-liberty, collectivist liars you’ll ever find. Any and all of their claims are suspect. If they want to reduce CO2 they should off themselves to help save the planet. (I personally am unwilling to do a damned thing to lower my so-called “carbon footprint”.)

            • Environmentalism has been the method used to impose communist principles on western society–especially in the USA.
              Environmentalists are not content with promoting clean water, air and land, but are hell-bent on controlling human behavior, and yes, promoting extermination plans for much of humanity as these “anointed” types consider mankind to be a pestilence (except for themselves) to be reduced in population “by any means necessary”.
              Environmentalists HATE the God-given concept of private property and have imposed government-backed and enforced “land use controls” on private property owners without compensation–clearly an unconstitutional “taking” of private property. If environmentalists want to control land use, let them purchase it themselves–not by government force. Today the only method of negating government-imposed land use restrictions is “shoot, shovel, and shut up”.
              If environmentalists had their way, the earth’s human population would be reduced by approximately 90%, with the remainder to (be forced) to live in cities, in soviet-style high rise apartments, utilizing bicycles, buses and trains for transportation. The use of automobiles and access to “pristine wilderness (rural) areas” would be off-limits to us mere mortals, and would only be available for these “anointed” environmentalists.
              The “endangered species act” is another abuse of environmentalism. Species are always changing, to adapt to their environments–”survival if the fittest”. In fact, the hoopla over the “spotted owl” (that placed much northwest timber land “off-limits” to logging) turned out to be nothing but scientific misconduct and arrogance. There are virtually identical species in other parts of the northwest.
              More scientific malpractice occurred when government biologists attempted to “plant” lynx fur in certain areas to provide an excuse for making those areas “off-limits” for logging or development. Fortunately, these “scientists” were caught–however, no punishment was given.
              In a nutshell, today’s environmentalism IS communism… like watermelon…”green” on the outside and “red” (communist) on the inside…
              It is interesting to note that communist and third-world countries have the WORST environmental conditions on the planet. Instead of the USA and other developed countries spending billions to get rid of that last half-percent of pollution, it would behoove the communist countries to improve their conditions first.

              • The bicycle allows far too much personal mobility for these people. It is only being used as short term method to negatively impact private motoring. The new urbanists tend to oppose any bicycling project that does not negatively impact motoring. There is no reason that we cannot have a road system that is friendly to bicycling with near zero impact to motoring. In fact if done very well motoring would likely improve.

                The bicyclists will be thrown under the bus when time comes.

                Just yesterday I biked almost 30 miles. 15 miles out, 15 miles back. That’s nothing really and its’ a good 5 times more than the powers that be want our radius to be.

                • Hi Brent,

                  Here’s a specific example to cement your point: I live just a couple of miles from the Blue Ridge Parkway and use it regularly. So do lots of cyclists. It has been repaved twice in the past ten years (they are just finishing up the latest) and it would have been so easy to add a bike lane to each travel lane. Or just a foot more width/hard shoulder (to make passing easier). This would have greatly improved flow and reduced tension between car drivers, RV drivers and the cyclists – made for a more pleasant trip for all concerned and at very little additional cost.

                  Guess what the bastards did instead?

                  They effectively eliminated “run off” area by building little asphalt berms several inches high where the pavement ends and the grass begins. The stated reason is to direct rain runoff but the practical effect is to narrow the travel lane and make it literally impossible for the cyclists to escape onto the shoulder and also make it that much harder for not-so-great drivers to pass cyclists safely – and so they are reluctant to even try. So they crawl behind cyclists struggling up grades at less than 20 MPH, often for miles… a conga line of fuming drivers behind them.

                  They have also eliminated four of the five legal passing zones that used to exist on the stretch of Parkway I routinely travel and I hear they are going to lower the speed limit from 45 to 35 MPH, too.

                  • Yep. Sounds typical. All they would have needed to do is make the lane about 14-15ft wide instead of the standard 12ft. A minimum of a ~18in-2ft paved shoulder and that would be perfect. Bicyclists could ride just inches left of the white line, have run out room just in case and be passed with ease. Now even if there isn’t enough space for that, it could be squeezed down some and still work well.

                    Wide curb lanes fix all the problems because bicyclists can ride vehicularly and be passed easily.

                    Now I suppose the parkway doesn’t have a lot of things along it or streets coming off it so a bike lane might work there, but they are inferior to wide curb lanes because they become sort of bicycle prison. Bike lanes can work well for where there are long distances (at least a mile) between cross streets and driveways. The line gives the clovers a reference and the drawbacks all stem from turns and driveways where bicyclist may want to turn left or more importantly motorists come out from and turn into without checking the bike lane.

            • Not reducing carbon foot print… The more I learn the more I become convinced the Earth needed CO2. Levels were very very low at the dawn of the age of hydrocarbon combustion. Dangerously low for life and heading downwards.

              If that’s the case one of earth’s critters had to learn how to take carbon out of the bowels of the earth and turn it into atmospheric CO2 or life on earth would eventually end when too much CO2 became sequestered carbon unless vulcanism could keep up.

              Now with some breathing room there is a greening going on. If the real environmental issues would be addressed, which are often byproducts of a lack of human liberty, then that would really be something. But instead so much effort is squandered in efforts against CO2. To the point of ignoring the vast real harm being done in China.

            • Those days of old when the CO2 was much higher, for the Believer the evidence speaks for itself for the skeptic there is never enough proof.Most of our CO2 or at least a great deal is locked up in the fossil coral reefs called limestone( or maybe that much carbonate rock couldn’t be formed over a day 6000 years ago?)
              Perhaps its time to toss the works of Dixie Ray on the bonfire with Ayn Rands works?( Personally I don’t believe Dagney could have built a railroad by Herself in Galt Gulch- maybe She was going to hire illegal immigrants, in the spirit of entrepreneurship, along with Hank of course)

              • Kevin, which “days of old”? What years? What was the cause? Did it fluctuate? When did it change and did it ever happen again? If so when and was it by the same cause? Etc.

                My point is that the days of old were well before the I/C engine and yet the climate changed drastically on its own and in more devastating ways too.

        • Let’s not forget that one volcano spewing ash puts more pollution into the atmosphere than millions of cars or human activity

    • Kevin, “I would say the problem with our beloved chariots is the fact that there are too many of them , rather than not being clean enough.”

      If there are “too many” then who should be “permitted” to drive these chariots?

      • Hi Skunk,

        Here’s an idea I’ve been mulling in re “too many cars” and “the environment”:

        Imagine if the average person didn’t have to work to pay half his income in taxes. Didn’t have to earn income to pay taxes on a home long ago paid-off…

        That person might not have to work as much – or as long.

        That person could probably afford to stop working – and driving to work every day – before he turned 45.

        I know this is possible because I two-thirds did it myself. I still have to work, but only because I have to pay taxes. If I did not have to pay taxes on my home or had back just the taxes extracted from me for Socialist Insecurity I could easily provide for myself without earning more than $500 a month.

        Imagine this writ large. Imagine half the current workforce in the same position. Traffic would diminish by a third to half – and imagine how good that would be for “the environment.”

        But, forget it.

        Gotta keep the mules hooked to their wagons.

        • Eric, agreed. Dropping out of this rotten system as much as possible is the best option. And that is just what I am doing.

        • Me too Eric. If I had the half my income back for the last 20 years plus property taxes I could likely be retired right now.

          • Hi Brent,

            Yup. Just the property tax by itself… holy cow! I have lived in the same house (paid for) since 2003. The annual tax is about $1,700.

            That’s almost $26,000 – not counting the lost opportunity cost.

            That sum – half that sum – would be a life-saver at this moment (post divorce, finances badly crippled). It could carry me through the next two or three years, easily.

            Instead, I can barely afford to get my teeth fixed and meanwhile the Fed Thug Three Letter Collection Agency is demanding $695 and the Geico mafia wants $204… and on and on it goes…

            • I want to live where you live. My total is $100,000 for a 2.5 bedroom house and I have nothing to show for it.

            • $ 1700??? mine is nine thousand if I did not have a rental downstairs I would have hung myself and greatly reduced my carbon footprint

      • Perhaps a good start would be to weed out the bad drivers and as Eric sez, “The Clovers”‘ Let Me put this out there, where is all this money the ‘tariffs are going to bring in go? Wasn’t Patrick Buchanan’s platform built on “protectionism” rather than “free market”?

  24. Didn’t know roadside emission detectors were even a thing. That state is even more draconian than I realized.

    I think VW’s strategy is to just take all the abuse and hope that people forget this even happened. Don’t mention anything about this to the public in an attempt to defend themselves, as that would only anger the beast.

  25. Back when I let myself get drawn into troll debates, over at Ars Technica I got chastised by asking the simple question of just how they determined the deaths and medical problems were caused by excessive NoX in the air. Of course there was no true scientific research done, just epidemiological studies and extrapolation based on lab rat testing. A few mentioned that “they knew someone with asthma who lived near a highway” and therefore all their breathing issues were due to VW diesels.

    I’m sure many of us remember the saccharine cancer junk science from the 1970s, where they force-fed lab rats gallons of saccharine ostensibly in order to speed up the research (which was quite possibly funded by “big sugar,” or perhaps Monsanto hoping to get NutraSweet on the market). Then when they all got cancer it was the biggest science story since the swine flu epidemic. Of course no journalist ever asked for causation in humans consuming normal amounts of saccharine, despite it being on the market since the 1920s and millions (thousands?) of diabetics consuming it for decades.

    This, or perhaps the vilification of nuclear power, is the point where scientific research became a political and economic tool.

    • Poor Science , rather like the Asbestos scare( something to it , of course there was a lot of money to go after in the deep pockets) they never mentioned how many people who got this type of cancer , who were heavy smokers( Fiberglass, the next Asbestos, wanna wager?)

      • Yes, poor science. And the damage is done. How many millions wasted because of the lack of “common sense” in regulation? The centralization of regulation is at the core of what is dividing our country these days, but no one in the mainstream (or the central government) seems to understand that.

        And once that regulation is in place, that’s it. Freeze technological advancement forever. Because that’s the way regulation works. Businesses don’t generally like regulation until they’re on top, but they really don’t like having many different regulatory bodies either. At least not when they achieve a certain size. So California is able to leverage their size to set regulations that affect the entire planet, just because it is the “highest common denominator.” It will be interesting to see who comes out against California’s ballot initiative to divide into three states. My guess is the regulators will crow the loudest. And not just because they want their underfunded pensions.

        • Oh the freezing from regulation. Ran into that in my career. It has killed untold numbers of people because of freezing a medical treatment in the 1960s.

    • Ready, asking questions such as how something is determined is a major no-no in the West today. Us mundanes are not to ask questions. Our duty is not to ask How or to reason Why. Our duty is to submit and obey.

    • NOx is produced in nature. So long as what is created by man is below nature’s processing bandwidth then there is no problem at all. So proving in this day and age that the trivial amount added by ‘cheating’ VWs caused any harm is impossible. Odds are it made no measurable difference in overall man produced NOx.

  26. Most environmentalists miss the point when it comes to reduction of pollution. Let’s use automobiles as an example. A large “cost vs. benefit” ratio was beneficial when it came to controlling pollution from automobiles. Initially, it did not take much in the way of engineering to “clean up” approximately 85% of automobile pollution. Such environmentally responsible successes were made at minimal cost and did provide a true large benefit in minimizing pollution at the source.
    As it stands now, automobiles are approximately 97% pollution-free. While it may have cost a small amount to clean up automobiles to this point, attempting to clean up the remaining 3% would cost thousands of dollars per vehicle–a cost-benefit ratio that is economically and environmentally unsustainable and unachievable.
    Most environmentalists are neither scientists or economists and do not understant the implications of attempts to “clean up” the remaining small percentage of pollutants which are negligible.
    A 97% reduction in automobile pollution should be considered a success, but to today’s luddite environmentalists, it is never enough.
    A major problem is that most environmentalists base their faulty reasoning on emotion, rather than logic and scientific facts.

    • The other problem is that the left uses past performance as a bludgeon for raising the standard further. Since they were able to use pressure to get the car manufacturers to kowtow and reduce emissions, why not continue to turn the screws?

      But as you point out, only economic prosperity will lead to improvements, not fatwas or public shaming. Does anyone really think that China is happy with the massive air pollution over their cities? Or that the 2 cycle scooters in India are somehow better than the more complicated (and expensive) 4 strokes in the US? If China banned 2 cycle engines tomorrow all that would happen is a lot of people would be back on bicycles. Of course say that to your average Gaia-lover and they’d say that’s a good thing. As they climb into their “green” electric car that costs the equivalent of several years’ wage in the developing world. Or worse, their private jet.

  27. Eric.
    Typical of government. Attack the ones that can not defend themselves. I knew a man who owned a VW diesel pick up truck in early 1980s. He claimed 50mpg back then. Just as with ethanol, Sugar,and many other goods, powerful, monied lobby groups conspire to commit fraud. Politicians, who’s complete existence is based on the fraud count the money on the way to the bank. Meanwhile under informed people are robbed as invisibley as SSI and with holding taxes. Sickening corrupt to the core yet we vote for more.

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