Our Favorite Price

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Ass, gas or grass – no one rides for free. So said the once popular bumper sticker.

Unless you drive an EV.

Then you can use the government to force someone else to “help” pay for your ride – and your road. Because you don’t have to pay any of the gas taxes that fund the roads.

It’s quite a five-fingered discount, too.

Gas taxes – federal and state – tally about 50 cents on average, added to the cost of every gallon of gasoline (and diesel) sold. If your car’s tank holds 15 gallons – which is typical – you’re paying about $7.50 in taxes every fill-up, regardless of the cost of the gas.

If you fill up twice a week, that’s about $15 per week or $60 per month – or $720 annually. Over the course of a six-year new car loan, the bite comes to several thousand dollars.

Owners of vehicles with bigger tanks that use more gas pay more in taxes, obviously. If you have an SUV or pick-up with a 21 gallon tank, each fill-up costs you about $10 in motor fuels taxes, about 20 percent more than the owner of the car with 15 gallon tank.

But EV owners don’t pay a red cent. This includes Ludicrous Speed energy hogs like the Tesla S – which burn up lots of untaxed electricity.

Which is why several states have begun sending them a separate bill for their use of the roads they’re not paying for.

It’s not much of a bill. In fact, it’s a lot less of a bill than the rest of us are paying (and not counting the other paying we’re doing . . . to “help” EV owners buy their car through subsidies and cost-shifting from unprofitable EVs to the profitable vehicles the rest of us buy but now pay just a bit more for, in order for EV owners to pay less for theirs).

Arkansas, for instance, recently passed a law that will require all EV owners to pay a $200 fee each year (added to the usual vehicle registration renewal fees) in lieu of paying at the pump. But it amounts to the same thing.

They’re being charged for what they use – just like the rest of us.

And it amounts to a discount, in relation to what the rest of us pay.

$200 annually is about half what the average non-electric car driver pays each year in motor fuels taxes.

But Consumer Reports think it’s too much – that any fees are too much – probably because expecting EV owners to pay for the roads they use will “discourage adoption” of electric vehicles.

This is true, of course.

Having to pay for something tends to cause most people to think twice about buying it. Or at least, to weight the costs vs. the benefits before they buy it.

The problem with electric cars is that the costs do outweigh the benefits.

Which is why it is so important to shove those costs under the rug, in order to take people’s minds off them – in order to wheedle them into buying what they otherwise probably wouldn’t.

This includes the cost to drive the EV.

The free lunch at the plug conjures the illusion that the EV owner is saving money vs. his neighbor – the one who was forced, through taxes, to “help” him buy his EV.

Or at least, it makes the EV owner feel a bit less stupid, financially, about spending thousands of dollars more on his EV. He tells himself he’ll recoup that loss in the form of what he’s not having to spend on fuel (and taxes).

But what happens when that free ride disappears?

CR has already told us.

When Denmark dialed back what it paid people to buy EVs, people stopped buying them almost completely. Sales plummeted by more than 60 percent in one year – not surprising since the end of the subsidy amounted to a sudden several thousand dollar increase in the cost of the EV.

The same thing happened in Hong Kong and everywhere else where prospective buyers were faced with having to pay full price for an electric car.

Most people would never buy an EV at full price for the simple reason that they can’t afford too – leaving aside the other problems. That’s why the government has to pay people to buy EVs.

Adding several thousand dollars to the cost of EV ownership in gas-tax-equivalent road-use taxes makes the math that much worse – which makes it that much harder to wheedle people into EVs.

Which is problem for those pushing EVs.

Like CR.

CR has, of course, never published a critical word about gas taxes, which it has always favored more of – but not to pay for the roads. Instead, to “nudge” American drivers out of the kinds of cars CR doesn’t like, such as pick-ups and SUVs.

But because CR wants to “nudge” Americans into electric cars, it opposes making them pay even a portion of what the rest of us pay.

And then lies about it. There is no reason to keep yourself from going there.

Either that or the editors of CR are innumerate.

The magazine claims that EV fees being applied by states like Arkansas are “up to four times higher than the annual gasoline tax would be for the average new car in 2025.

Italics added.

The scoundrels! They are basing their math on a nonexistent (as of 2019) “average new car” that averages almost 50 MPG – nearly double what the typical car you can actually buy today averages – on the assumption that a federal fatwa so mandating all new cars must average by 2025 becomes a legal requirement. (The Orange Man is fighting this; see here for more.)

But the only 2019 cars that average 50 MPG are compact-sized hybrids like the Toyota Prius, which constitute less than 5 percent of the total new car spectrum. Using hypothetical 2025 model years cars as the basis for its cost comparisons is a greasy shuck-and-jive that would make a tent show evangelist blush.

CR’s editors know perfectly well that there is quite a difference between what most people who don’t drive electric cars today are paying in motor fuels taxes vs. what it asserts they’ll be paying in 2025, when they assume the average new car will average 50 MPG.

What if it doesn’t?

And what if people don’t trade-in what they’re driving today for that “50 MPG” 2025 model?

CR is trying, in other words, to make it look as though EV owners are being hit up to pay more for the roads they use vs. what non-electric car owners actually are paying – when in fact, the mild fees a few states are imposing on EV owners are well below what most people are paying right now in motor fuels taxes.

It’s despicable.

But it’s of a piece with everything else relating to electric cars. To give people the facts about EVs would be dangerous.

It might “discourage adoption” of them.

. . .

Got a question about cars, Libertarian politics – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!

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  1. My state mulcts us each year for a “gross weight tax”. For my car, a big one tonne Ford van, they whack me aobut six bits per year. It gets great mileage considering its weight, and how often I have a load inside and/or a trailer behind. Gets 17-18 lght and solo. I’ve towed a trailer scaling 16,500 lbs a thousand miles, and it returned 15-16 mpg. Freeway speed, and notcrawling up the mountain passes.

    They ALSO whack us a whopping four bits the gallon in fuel tax. 20K miles for a year nets them over $600 in road use taxes via fuel.

    Those electric rigs have so much data recording capability there ought to be a way of outputting in a savealble format the total miles run each year. Grant them a high 50 mpg rate of return and calculate their road tax based on miles covered, times a weight factor to effectively calculate actual fuel mileage equivalent, and tax them on that as if they had paid fuel taxes at the bowsers. WHY should I subsidise them at time of purchase AND as I use and pay for those that use and do not pauy…?

  2. Don’t plants take in CO2 and emit oxygen? That’s what I remember from grade school.

    While the feds are crippling new cars in the name of curbing emissions, the next generation is deliberately
    inhaling toxic nicotine and cannabis solutions into their lungs.

  3. I’m a long time subscriber to Consumer Reports. I will not be renewing. They’ve been helpful over the years, but I’m tired of their increasing political slant. There is very little if anything where they would not like the government to intervene.

    • It’s really sad that there is pretty much no mainstream publication that isn’t PC; pushing the gov’t/liberal agenda; and ‘advocating’ for gov’t intervention and or subsidy in it’s field(s) of concern, and or demanding that those whom they count as their enemies be censored or restricted.

      Our whole society has been propagandized to the point where they no longer even need any prodding…they just believe in and peddle these ideas of their own volition now, because such has become there religion- statism/collectivism.

      I keep getting junk in the mail from AARP (I’m only 57! Am I supposed to be over the hill already?!)….one day I’d like to call them and tell them that I would join there group of beggars in if I were 157! Ever see one of their magazines? Holy crap! Every page might as well just say “Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!”. Funny- old people like talking about how much they l;ove their grandkids….but they sure have no problem selling their futures down the terlit and extorting every last dime from them by advocating ever more Socialist Security, Medicare and endless other government programs “for seniors”- as if being old gives one the right to appropriate the wealth of others by force! Might as well sell the damn grand-sprogs into slavery….that’s what they’re essentially doing.

      • Nunz, being there and living it, I’m not sure how much you can scam the govt. Everything I’ve seen it’s written in stone in a way and it’s not like they’re doling out more and more….to the people who have paid all their lives.

        I won’t try to figure out how much a person pays and how much they get in return but if it was a one to one ratio they’d have to do concrete work till the day they dies because of inflation.

        If everyone had that money to spend however they wanted their entire life, things would be greatly changed for a great amount of people. Sure, there’s people that spend every cent they can get. Always have something they want to buy. There should be a cut-off point for people who are well to do and esp. the wealthy. I work every day I can if that gives you an idea of how well set I am. I need one of those 10,000% pot stocks all the click baiters advertise.

      • I’ve been getting the “invitations” from AARP for a few years now. I mentioned it to a few people and the general reaction from anyone with grey hair is “You should join, you’ll get all kinds of discounts.” I counter with “At the expense of supporting a lobby that runs counter to everything I believe!”

        • What kills me too, RK, I know a few old(er) farts who are worth a lot of money- and they just love getting freebies and discounts, and every “benefit” proffered.

          Well, according to Uncle’s metric of “income”, I’m a pauper…but damn, I’ll live the life I made for myself- for better or worse; I don’t want anyone robbed to make up for any lack of responsibility on my part throughout my life, or to give me the warm & fuzzy feel-goods, and relegate me to the status of a three year-old who needs to be satiated and kept quiet by being bribed by a string of trinkets; stolen trinkets, at that!

          Ironically, my 94 year-old doesn’t get the AARP schpiels; instead she gets offers from AAA. She has never owned a car in her life, and hasn’t driven since c.1953…. Ah! direct-mail marketers! Clearly, as competent as car-company execs and and large chain specialty retailers!

          And literally, every week (sometimes twice a week) we bOTH get BS from “Dish Network” admonishing us to switch to their service. Switch from what? Neither one of us watches TV……

    • I used to be a subscriber too. I used to listen to their car themed podcast as well. Not anymore.
      On another note: the weird thing about Arkansas imposing this fee is that AR already has a road useage fee added on at plate renewal. I used to live there, so I know 🙂

      • Buddy, this is America!- Where you get triple and quadruple-taxed for everything!

        Half your property taxes go to fund the indoctrination centers where your neighbor’s sprogs get a free edumacation; fund the liberries too.
        Then ya see the breakdown on your car registration renewals….part of that is going for the above two items as well.
        So too on several utility bill taxes…..
        I’m surprised they haven’t figured out a way to make part of the money go to fund the same thing when ya buy carpet tacks!


        Gas tax pays for the roads…. (LOL!)
        Property taxes pay for the roads…
        State income tax pays for the roads.
        Sales tax pays for the roads.
        The toll ya pay when ya drive over the bridge pays for the bridge….only it was paid for 35 years ago, but the toll remains, and now goes to help subsidize the subway, so the ‘undocumented’ chamber maid can get to work…..

        It is utterly absurd, and beyond hope, because everyone just accepts it- and has been for several generations.

        Or…how about guys like me? Single, no kids, live alone, own several vehicles- have to “pay for the roads” in multiples every year, even though I can only drive one vehicle at a time; and even though I drive less than the average person who only owns one vehicle….

        • Nunz, then those old nasty commercial vehicles that ruin our roads cause they’re not built worth a damn, get a big ol bill from the IRS for Federal Road Use Tax even though they pay the bulk of the fuel tax and registration is ungodly expensive. And that mandatory insurance to make the insurance companies profits like never before seen and that runs up the bill to the Just Us dept from judges to prosecutors and cops. What a godawful waste of money and we’re all robbed at the point of a gun. Then there’s private prisons that get paid by us for poor that can’t afford insurance or pay the ticket for not having it…..even though that’s not a jailable offense. You’d be hard-pressed to tell those in jail that.

          • Since the G word and turdpress won’t let me post a link I’ll just paste Gritsforbreakfast blog here and you can see where untold amounts of money is wasted.

            Saturday, September 21, 2019
            Policing policy, forensic follies, the high cost of treating Hep C in prison, and other stories
            Here are a few odds and ends that merit Grits readers’ attention:

            Lawsuit seeking Hep C treatment could come with BIG pricetag
            More than 18,000 Texas prison inmates have been diagnosed with Hepatitis C – almost certainly an undercount since TDCJ does not do comprehensive testing – but only a tiny handful receive treatment. The Houston Chronicle reported on a new federal lawsuit demanding they receive treatment, which could cost up to $63,000 per person. See prior Grits coverage and video of testimony from 2014 regarding Hep C treatment in TDCJ.

            Conservative think tank takes on police unions
            In a significant development, the conservative Texas Public Policy Foundation published a new report criticizing police unions for undermining police accountability reforms. In Texas, conservative politicians in the 21st century have largely kowtowed to these groups. Maybe the state’s leading conservative think tank can convince them that’s a bad approach. In related news, in St. Louis, prosecutors voted last December to join the local police union in response to the election of a new, reform-minded DA. This academic article makes the case that “This complete and public union of prosecutorial and police interests represents a collapse not only of prosecutorial ethical standards, but also a very real threat against democratically elected prosecutors who would seek to enact the reforms that their constituents desire.”

            Deep data dive for Big D and H-Town
            The project by the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition and January Advisors to publish “data dashboards” for Harris and Dallas Counties’ arrest, dismissal, and conviction information allows for important analyses that have never been possible before from publicly available data. They just published this overview of the project, which includes links to the dashboards and a description of what’s there.

            Handful of police-officer indictments in Dallas stand out
            The Dallas DA’s office has indicted four police officers for murder in three years, with two of them convicted. The trial for another, Amber Guyger, begins Monday. Notably, the indictments came under both Republican and Democratic District Attorneys. The Dallas News has a story describing how rare this is at other agencies. Even in Dallas, only one officer was indicted this year out of 50 (!) officer involved shootings taken to grand juries. Despite the rarity of such developments, the head of the local police union was quoted saying the indictments were evidence of anti-police bias.

            DPS out of Dallas, with mixed reviews
            The Department of Public Safety has ended its deployment in Dallas launched by the governor earlier this year. According to an item from the Houston Chronicle’s Austin bureau, “The influx of state troopers drew criticism from some residents and a city councilman, who called for the operation’s end after hearing complaints that enforcement was unfairly targeting people of color, The Dallas Morning News reported. In August, two troopers fatally shot a Dallas man who the agency said pulled a handgun after a traffic stop, the News reported.” Despite these criticisms, DPS Col. Steve McCraw declared the operation a success, declaring “Certainly there’s been some that don’t appreciate it, usually the ones that are arrested or have relatives arrested, and we understand that.” That seems like an odd assertion when one of the most vocal critics is a city council member.

            DNA analyst resigned over high-profile error
            Grits had missed the news in August that a DNA examiner resigned at the Forensic Science Commission after a report by her employer found that she had testified incorrectly in a high-profile murder case in which a UT student was strangled, declaring the defendants’ DNA could be excluded when that was not true. (She worked for DPS at the time she gave the testimony.) Though she told FSC investigators she “misspoke,” she did so TEN times. The commission found that her error constituted professional “negligence,” but not “misconduct.” Whether or not there was any bad intention behind the mistake, it highlights the difficulties and pitfalls of interpreting DNA mixture evidence, which is more subjective and less definitive than one-to-one DNA matching.

            Can refined patrol strategies free up more officer time?
            A criminologist at UT-Dallas developed an algorithm to help the Carrollton PD refine its patrol strategies so officers waste less time in their vehicles. Notably, the recent staffing study for Dallas PD similarly recommended refining patrol routes to free up officer time spent driving long distances.

            Does EMS need tactical teams? Montgomery County thinks so
            The Montgomery County Hospital District has created a tactical team to join local police on SWAT raids. One paramedic said he joined the team because “There was more of the excitement appeal.”

            Alternative to police response for mental health, homelessness, substance abuse
            Regular readers know that Austin recently funded a new program to have medical personnel respond to some mental-health calls instead of police. At the same time, the city has been engulfed in a debate over how to confront homelessness. A program out of Oregon called CAHOOTS demonstrates an approach that could address both issues with a non-police response. Medical teams in a van respond to mental health crises and provide services to people suffering from substance abuse or homelessness, leaving law enforcement out of the equation. That’s a great idea.

            Okies boost parole rates
            Parole rates in Oklahoma are up 41 percent from last year, and commutations (which previously almost never happened) are up 1,300 percent, reported the Tulsa World. Texas parole rates remain stagnant in recent years at around 35 percent. Most offenders in Texas prisons are parole-eligible and could be released today if the parole board agreed.

            Policing practices parsed in Congress
            The US House Judiciary Committee held a four-hour oversight hearing this week on policing practices. Watch it here.

            The public’s cognitive dissonance over forensic science
            A new academic analysis finds that the public is losing faith in the accuracy of forensic science, but still believe forensics over other types of evidence. As evidence of this cognitive dissonance, “Respondents still believe that forensic evidence is a key part of a criminal case with nearly 40% of respondents believing that the absence of forensic evidence is sufficient for a prosecutor to drop the case and that the presence of forensic evidence, even if other forms of evidence suggest that the defendant is not guilty, is enough to convict the defendant.” (Emphasis added.)

            A new constituency for pot legalization?
            Should convenience-store owners become marijuana legalization proponents? It might boost their sales. A academic analysis published in February found that legalizing recreational pot use resulted in increased junk food sales.

            The eugenicist who gave us fingerprint identification
            I didn’t know that the original creator of fingerprint identification in the 19th century was also the enthusiastic progenitor of the eugenics movement. It doesn’t sound like the fingerprint discipline has changed much since he first convinced Scotland Yard to undertake it.

            The criminogenic effect of police stops on black and Latino boys
            A study published in April found that “the frequency of police stops [of black and Latino teenage boys] predicted more frequent engagement in delinquent behavior 6, 12, and 18 mo later, whereas delinquent behavior did not predict subsequent reports of police stops.” In other words, police stopping minority youth was predictive of future delinquency, but self-reported engagement in delinquency was NOT predictive of police stops! The implication is that proactive policing strategies like stop-and-frisk may actually cause juvenile crime instead of deterring it.
            Posted by Gritsforbreakfast at 9:25 AM Email ThisBlogThis!Share to TwitterShare to FacebookShare to Pinterest
            Labels: Forensic Errors, Forensic Science Commission, Police
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            • Heh…8, if the truth were really told everywhere….

              One county over from where I lived in NY- a geographically small county (Nassau) that abuts NYC and has over 1.5 million residents….same place where that cunt Kathleen Rice, whom Eric mentioned recently in an article, was DA- There forensics lab was so corrupt, that they had to end up practically clearing the jail.

              After the initial headlines, it was swept under the rug very quickly (and this was just within the last few years)….and now of course, I’m sure that lab is back to being perceived as credible again, by judges and the public…and it seems like it is never spoken of anymore…just flushed down the memory hole after a shuffling of personnel.

          • 8, Uncle and his 50 minions are master extorters! I learned of the state-by-state plates/taxes, and scales and all of that when I was still a kid in the 70’s- right around the time that Smokey And The Bandit came out. While everyone else was jumping on the I-wanna-be-a-trucker-when-I-Grow-Up-in-two-years bandwagon, I had already jetisoned the idea, because of such.

            Didn’t fully read the blog thing yet…but I caught “The high cost of treating Hep C in prison” part….

            I know…

            A friend of mine is still in touch with a guy who used to work for him back in NY- The guy’s not in prison (although he’s had a murder warrant from your state for c. 30 years)- Used to make his living burglarizing drugstores; then went straight and did autobody work- a long time alcoholic and drug addict. (Ironically, of all the scumbags who’ve worked for my friend, I actually liked this guy- He’s got a heart- and never to my knowledge bothered innocent people- He actually did me one the biggest, nicest favors anyone has ever done for me, once)

            My friend was recently telling me how the state of NY recently spent almost $100K to cure the guy’s Hep. C.

            Sheesh- Uncle’s creed: “Live any way you want; we’ll negate the consequences of your bad decisions by taking money from your more responsible neighbors”.

            • Nunz, I lost my best friend since we were 9 years old July 26, 2019. I’ve been sorta lost since then…..and it seems to have affected my health.

  4. Sort of makes you wonder if we shouldn’t use a pay-for-road-you-drive-on plan. Everybody uses a transponder and the roads have sensors every mile that detect the transponder and charge the account of the owner of the vehicle for each mile that they travel on that road. A penny or so a mile should be sufficient to maintain the road without fuel taxes, property taxes, or punitive license fees. The concept would work for govt-owned roads as well as private-owned roads…the revenue would just be directed to the appropriate road owner. If you don’t have a transponder, then you stop at a roadside booth and pay the fee or a camera catches you and sends you an invoice.

    • That’s a nice Orwellian plan. Great if you don’t value privacy and want Biggity Brother watching everywhere you go. (They do it now to a certain extent but the coverage is far from complete, at least outside the big cities.)

      I expect if something like this is implemented there will be a big demand for GPS jammers.

    • Don’t freaking’ encourage them! The technology is ALREADY available to meter automobile “consumption” and levy what in effect would be a TOLL on every vehicle! You think the tax-feeders aren’t ALREADY coming up with a scheme to foist it upon a gullible and unsuspecting public?

    • Well, they do that. Buy a big rig and wait till the end of the year when you get a bill for the Road Use Tax even though your fuel charges and godawful amounts of money you pay to each state for tags are huge in themselves. And it’s not like truckers never had mandatory insurance plus load insurance and often, twice charged for load insurance.

  5. If skyscrapers were built the same way as highways, to be rebuilt or refurbished every few years, those who build them would be out of business quickly.
    Since highways are, deliberately, designed to disintegrate under the heaviest loads, commercial vehicles, that they carry, perhaps those who design and construct such deliberately malconstructed highways should be charged with the marketing of defective products.
    I have to admit to being surprised that a libertarian car guy would advocate for a new tax when it would be completely simple for the county clerk to collect a road user fee for every electric car at the time of collecting comparable fees for the privilege of “owning” the vehicle. The only thing required is for the state governments to pass a law to collect the user fee. So little wear and tear is caused by electric cars to the interstate highways that we the people could afford their free riding.

    • It would be a lot easier for the govt. not to mandate collecting taxes to give to the carmakers for building these useless devices. I could use a steam drive vehicle if the govt. would make everyone else pay for the boiler and accompanying dangerous hardware. The rest is fairly easy.

    • Yeah, Bill- I still remember when I was a kid, and virtually all of the highways were white concrete. They lasted forever! No continually patching them up after every cold/snowy spell; ya didn’t constantly see construction crews everywhere…

      They sold the public on the asphalt[the fault of some ass politicians] roads by telling ’em “You won’t have the constant thumping of the expansion joints every yay feet (as if it was so terrible!)……and now the street pavers and municipal unions have “workfare” and an endless supply of extorted cash forever…and we are condemned to crappy roads forever.

      Funny though…I never thought of this until ya mentioned it!

      • And Texas finally got the gumption to build one without expansion joints. It’s been smooth as a baby’s butt since day one. Now to do that with all the interstates. You still can’t use an overload permit on them but you can always add axles.

        • I miss the “tha-thump, tha-thump,tha-thump,”- By the time I was old enough to drive, most of those roads were gone!

          In a town in the next county; a major secondary two-lane road through town, they used to have to repave it every year- and it was always a mess anyway. They finally got the idea to just scrape off all of the asphalt, and make it so’s we could drive on the old concretew roadway from like the 1940’s. It solved the problems. But of course, that is too logical, and doesn’t involve enough filthy lucre for most places to immitate.

  6. 30 years ago, CR was much more independent. I have run across so many web sites that are oozing with politically bent liberalism with hardly a speck of neutrality, like “Science Magazine” and “Discover”. The mainstream media is controlled by do-gooders who have not a whisper of a clue about the unintended consequences that come with all the garbage they support. Wasn’t the subsidy for a new Tesla $7500? Soon it will be gone after 2020. Geez, I wonder who paid for that?

    There is a great hunt for taxes as local and state governments are going broke because they cannot pay for the pension promises they have made. I wouldn’t be surprised to see an additional fee added to car registrations to help fund pensions. And some of those road taxes will be used also to fund pensions, not fix the roads.

    EV’s are a farce and the only reason they exist is to push climate change and its taxation…oh yes, you will be paying more for energy as the push for windmills and solar panels keeps rolling on. In Germany, the great green energy surge has hit a stone wall as electric bills have risen and power outages have become more common. They cannot get through most days without having to import reserve energy from neighboring countries. This is where we are headed. You might need to run an extension cord into Mexico to charge your silly energy saving EV.

    • Tom, it’s ironic that Texas doesn’t share electricity with the national grid via ERCOT. We’re rolling in electricity due to those bad old wind generators and much more compact and efficient gas plants, installed all over west Texas in the last round of oil patch mania. I wish I could rent a bus and take people all over west Texas(not in one day for certain)and show them the gas plants I personally know about and the wind generation fields that are located in the gas patch.

      Hell, I even hauled rock picked off land where pipelines were buried running through wind generation fields and brought them to the house. Those states that stop electrical generation deserve what they get. It’s not like Texas has the only large scale gas/oil production.

      I can only guess Pennsylvania is in a bind, a state that used to have an oil company with Penn in the name and the state from where the original driller found the first well(Santa Rita)10 miles NW of Big Lake Texas that began the Permian Basin which is still going strong.

      I can’t say it’s been very, very good to me but it’s paid the bills. One thing that’s always amazing is “The closer to the wellhead, the higher the price(of fuel)”. You’d think we were all getting rich but you’d be wrong. At least though, we’re never cut back of have outages that aren’t storm related.

      • Ah, Pencil-vania! -The state that turns abundant natural resources and prosperous industries into town-killing poverty and perpetual pollution [Check out Centralia!]…


  7. Please edit your article to include the gas tax figures for filling up either once or twice a week, but don’t use the once/week number as the twice/week totals.

    $7.50 per fill up (twice per week) = $15/week
    4 weeks/month x $15 = $60 (not $30 as you stated)

    However, since you extend this to an annual figure (and later a 6 year one), why not use the 52 weeks per year and just use $780 (52 x 15)? Do you need to state the month, year, and six year totals to make your point, or were you just showing the steps?

    Your article’s point is weakened by the underestimation of the tax (as currently worded) AND the fact that it includes an error in the arithmetic. We all make mistakes and I’m just pointing this one out in an effort to bring it to your attention.

      • eric, as an old hand with shoulder injuries(not sports, just work), I can tell you unequivocally that a TENS unit will help immensely. Just make sure you get one that’s adjustable in every way they can be. I had such a bad shoulder 10 years ago I was wearing my TENS unit from the time I got cleaned up at night till late and sometimes all night. After a couple months I noticed the muscles around that one shoulder had increased by enough it was easy to see. That helps a shoulder injury too just because the muscles take the strain that is normally on the joint. Try it, I guarantee you’ll like it.

          • Nunz, I been using it on my fucked up heel. I often have to walk on large uneven rock and that kills me. In fact, it’s time to break it out. I’m looking for a 9 volt power unit so I don’t go broke buying 9 Volt batteries.

              • Depends on the physical size. Rarely do rechargeable’s fit the device made for throwaways. But I can take the ends off a battery and put on a power source and it will last till the power is out, the first big thunderstorm. I’ve begun to have a problem with producing batteries. It’s gotten out of hand. I still have extension cords.

  8. Starting this year in Mississippi: When you go get your plate, hybrids pay an additional $75 and an ev will get dunned an extra $150.

    Made me smile.

    • Hi WF,

      Gas taxes are really user fees – I wrote about this a few months ago. Value for value – and voluntary. “Registration” is just another tax; a compulsory payment made for “services” I didn’t ask for, don’t want.

  9. Prius get’s 40-50mpg. VW diesels git >50mpg. EVs are rated above 90mpge in general. So paying at the same rate as what you’re quoting for a 20mpg car, EVs should be paying 1/5 that if the unequal gas tax actually was applied on a mpg/mpge comparison. It’s already unfair taxation. Taxing for true mileage will involve 100% toll roads. Ready for that? Want the Gov tracking everywhere you go, when you go and how fast you go 24/7? In the end, the money game is unfair. It has been for millennia. It’s how the power holders control the greater population, making them think there is a way out of poverty and dispair associated with being under/unprivileged compared to the power holders.

    There’s just not going to be a solution in a capitalistic society. Someone is always going to be controlling you and what you can get done, until you have more money than they do. What sad, is to see all the people who feel that the conservative right and center are actually looking out for the interests of the little man. The are 100% helping the big, privilged few who are the top .1% of the population and having 99% of the wealth to use to control you day and night.

    Get out your pillow to cry on Eric. You can have freedom at the top, controlled by privilege and also have freedom from manipulation at the bottom. EVs are winning in the market place of the people who have the resources to buy them. Just because that’s not you, doesn’t mean you are being shafted. It just means that the percentage of your wealth against that cost is not stacking up to the wealth equations that are working toward changes and evolution away from the petrol and car industry control over your transportation costs. EVs cost more because there is a real, greater cost for the energy systems.

    You’ve argued about how we don’t have climate change effects and how CO2 is not a problem. So lets do this. Let’s uncork the coal plants, take the catalytic converters off the cars, get rid of the diesel re-burn and other pollution controls because their not really required, or so you say. The CO warnings in big cities that can kill you are just spoofed warnings to try and make you ride public transportation so that your city can charge you more for transportation, right?

    Hell, there’s just no reason to do anything besides light everything up and burn all we can to make sure that we don’t have to pay more than necessary for transportation, because, well, its a right to have transportation available at the cost we want to pay, because otherwise it’s a violation of our rights.

    We should also institute open carry of all firearms and allow anyone to carry any kind of other weapon they want, to make themselves feel safe. There will never be a case of them being overpowered if they have a weapon to defend themselves with. We could take all the weapons away from the police too, just to make sure they are not violating anyones rights/freedoms.

    I don’t know what parts of the world you’ve experienced. I don’t know what kind of society you grew up in. It seems perhaps a bunch of bullies controlled you and make you feel like you needed to just have everything and anything that would make you happen handed do you without cost.

    Our societies today are better when we work together and support evolution that works to make the world around us better. The fewer pollutants we put into the atmosphere the better. If you feel CO2 is somehow not a problem, at all, I’m guess you missed your chemistry class goals. It’s funny how you are so wound up about how others are out living or enjoying more things than you can. Capitalism is just that way. You get to enjoy what you work for, and when someone has different privilege than you, or a better job, they get to do things you don’t get to do.

    Get off your ass and get a better job. There are hundreds of thousands of tech jobs available around the world paying upper 5-digit and well into the 6-digit salaries. Many of those are jobs around STEM based educations which involve logical thinking and rules and regulations. If you can manage that kind of smarts, there’s literally no reason you couldn’t get a job that payed enough for you to own an EV.

    • Hi H,

      You raise a good point – that EVs, if they ever become common, will likely result in taxation-by-mile (applied to all of us) and the cost will be higher. And more Big Brothery, too. It’s another reason for my opposition to these Unnecessary Vehicles (UVs) which are being imposed on us from above. There is almost no free market demand for EVs, because they are unaffordable as well as impractical for most people. This is why they’re being forced on us from above. That’s the sort of bullying I oppose, incidentally.

      On C02 and “climate change”: The facts (the actual data) show a slight increase in temperature; the models predict a catastrophic (and imminent) increase. Atmospheric C02 concentrations are higher today than 100 years ago; but they are not unusually high in geologic terms; the models predict an imminent Venusian run-away effect.

      The term itself – “climate change” – ought to raise questions about the truth of the thing. Scientists – real ones – are very precise about the terms they use because without precision, you’ve got nothing . . . scientific. Why did they have to re-brand “global warming”? Because it was subject to fact checking and an either/or answer. But the “climate” is always “changing”… the term has no substance. It can mean anything – and thus isn’t scientific and thus implicitly political.

      You write that I “… needed to just have everything and anything that would make you happen handed do you without cost.” This is precisely the opposite of my position! I don’t want “everything and anything.” Just what I can afford to buy, assuming I want it and am willing to pay for it. And I’d like for others to be free to offer the things I and others might want – but not be forced to buy those things, if we do not want those things. Nor forced to “help” others buy them.

      I have no objection to you purchasing an EV. I just don’t want to compelled (via taxes) to subsidize your purchase. I’m quite happy with my paid-for truck, by the way. My job suits as it provides for my needs, which don’t include a $40,000 electric car.

      It’s better when individuals work together, organizing along natural lines – than to use force to herd people into a coercive collective where they are told how they must interact.

      • Notice how the moron conflates CO and CO2, a big indicator right there that he doesn’t have a clue as to what he’s talking about. Same with disparagingly talking about “taking off catalytic converters” – doesn’t he realize that the way converters operate is to turn engine emissions such as HC and CO into CO2? Thus he should be in FAVOR OF removing catalytic converters because, you know, the boogeyma…, I mean “Climate Change”. Then he takes the typical snotty position of the EV fanboi, you’re just jealous because you can’t afford a fancy new electric car, while out of the other side of his mouth attacking “capitalism” (i.e., free enterprise), claiming it controls you when it’s socialism and communism that require Orwell’s boot stamping on a human face, forever.

        This guy displays many common trademarks of the clueless left-wing Social Justice Warrior. In the immortal words of Bugs Bunny:


        • Amen, Jason –

          I wish the subject could be discussed . . . reasonably. I point out that the objectively harmful byproducts of combustion (e.g., unburned hydrocarbons released into the air) have largely been eliminated and that insisting they be entirely eliminated regardless of the cost is unreasonable… and get accused of urging that people pour used motor oil down the storm sewer.

          • Hey Eric,

            Something is weird when such a large percentage of the population cannot discuss CAGW reasonably, most of the time, they can’t discuss it without anger. Even weirder, they think we’re the irrational ones!

            It’s almost like a concerted propaganda campaign was launched in order to render most incapable of thought and judgement on this issue.


            • Amen, Jeremy!

              I was listening to an interesting discussion about the need people have to feel their lives have meaning; that in a secular (and nihilistic) era, many substitute the god of government for the old gods.

              Also – and related – the susceptibility of many people to eschatological thinking – basically, that we are Doomed.

              “Climate change” punches the buttons. It gives them a reason – and it makes them feel virtuous in the face of “evil” (as defined, helpfully, by the secular priesthood – the government).

              The angry/hysterical responses we’re dealing with are telling.

              These people are offended by your failure to believe; that you have questioned their religion.

    • “Want the Gov tracking everywhere you go, when you go and how fast you go 24/7?”

      You haven’t been paying attention. Federal and state governments are already pushing tax by mile tracking with the excuse that electric vehicles are negatively impacting tax revenues.

      ” Someone is always going to be controlling you and what you can get done”

      That control comes from being able to use money to buy off those who run the government which as the monopoly on legal violence.

      “What sad, is to see all the people who feel that the conservative right and center are actually looking out for the interests of the little man.”

      Neither the so-called left or right are. The government and its monetary system is set up to push wealth to the top of the pyramid.

      “The CO warnings”

      I’ve lived in a big metro area my entire life and there has never been a CO warning. The only CO warning I ever experienced was when the heat exchanger on my furnace rusted out. CO2 driven “global warming” is Mann made. No that’s not a misspelling but the name of one of the leading climate “scientists” in figuring out ways to show warming by trimming plots, adjusting data, pruning and grafting different data sets together, and so on. Furthermore there’s a difference between CO2 and actual pollution. Alarmists love to conflate things to mislead the public. The problems of actual pollution were solved a good long time ago. You could help the planet far more by getting China and India and other countries to implement them than you ever will restricting energy use in the west.

      “Our societies today are better when we work together and support evolution that works to make the world around us better.”

      If we just surrender ourselves to the visions of the late 19th century and early 20th century wealthy industrialists who decided that because they were wealthy that they should get to engineer society. They may be dead but their decedents and followers are not and their vision of the one world company town remains very much alive and is being pushed through. Controlling and rationing energy is a big part of that. The thing is when they tried it without government they failed. With government people accept it.

      “If you feel CO2 is somehow not a problem, at all, I’m guess you missed your chemistry class goals”

      Apparently you did. CO2 holds about all the energy it can at 300ppm. The gains from there are remarkably tiny even if you increase it ten fold. The entire theory rests on an idea that those tiny changes get amplified by other factors. Trouble is the data doesn’t show it. Even after significant adjustments it barely gets up to Hansen’s no more CO2 production after the year 2000. But what was done was business as usual.

      “Get off your ass and get a better job. There are hundreds of thousands of tech jobs available around the world paying upper 5-digit and well into the 6-digit salaries. Many of those are jobs around STEM based educations which involve logical thinking and rules and regulations. If you can manage that kind of smarts, there’s literally no reason you couldn’t get a job that payed enough for you to own an EV.”

      You’re hilarious. I’m an engineer and I deal with “rules and regulations”. There are two kinds of rules and regulations. The kind that engineers make via private standards bodies. These are good. These work very well as a rule. UL can be a bit problematic at times though. Then there are the kind pointy haired idiots come up with which are imposed by government bodies. You are obviously trying to conflate the two for your own reasons.

      And BTW, I can’t “afford” an EV with my engineering salary because I can’t justify paying over $30K for an economy car and the tax rate I have to pay to keep your precious government from throwing me in a cage. Now maybe if I didn’t have to pay so much in taxes maybe I could afford a fancy $60-100K car. And by afford I mean to simply walk into a dealership and buy it. Not take out a loan and be debt slave.

      • Going to the Wally pharmacy for the last time yesterday I drove past that part of the parking lot people now avoid, the place where there are “refueling” stations for EV. I’ve yet to see one used. WTF in west Texas drives an EV?

        Of course I’d be the last to know since all cars look the same, ugly.

        Every now and again I’ll see a really nice version of a semi or pure sports car from 15 years ago and do a double-take. They were so smooth and swoopy. I hope those people don’t get swatted by one of the little humpbacked beasts that pass for cars now.

        • I feel; sorry for anyone who still lives in these filthy cities, suburbs, and other densely-populated areas, ’cause cars occupy such a large proportion of the landscape (Roads jammed with ’em; seas of parking lots; 6 in every driveway; etc. It’s like the main goal of modern design and planning is to accommodate cars!) and with these cars all being so fugly, and cookie-cutter look-a-like, they just make the landscape utterly uninteresting, bland, and depressing.

          Didn’t use to be like this! In the 70’s, and even through a good part of the 80’s, there was still a lot of car-diversity- cars of all colors and ages; in varying degrees of decrepitude…. It made for interesting viewing. Now it’s just all the same.

          Kinda the same with houses too. Used to be interesting colors; landscaping from bare dirt, to weeds, to lush manicured yards; dumps, to prim and proper places…. Now it’s mainly a sea of vinyl-sided boring boxes crammed on tiny lots with fugly cars in the driveway….

          The world has become utterly boring. It was much more interesting before everyone became so ‘affluent’; before everyone went into crippling debt to buy a McMansion and several new cars that cost more than a house should.

          • Anyone ever seen pictures of the “urban manural” construction in Soviet bloc countries, particularly in Eastern Europe? Only difference now is that they use a small handful of different colours.. all the same saturation level, in a patchwork of spots.. one panel this medium avocaco, the next one the equivalent medium okra, next over is the same shade of medium apricot, then a grey. The “houses” all in a row look a whole lot like a mashupbetween Jackson Pollock’s Duck Walk painting andsomething the Cubists would so. And they are almost as close as they used to build then in San Francisco. I rmember my cousn’t place there in the 1960’s… standing in the WC and looking out the window, a nice piece of wood-framed craftsmanship, I could open it and reach out and literally knock on the window of the loo next door.
            I can see how they got the nails in the rEAL WOOD siding on the first house, but I’ve never understoood how they did it on the second. A claw hammer could barely fit rubbing the nead on a strake on one house, and the claws would be less than an inch away from the strake on the second. LIttle wonder that once a fire started it was bye bye to the whole block. So today’s cell block houses are a slight improvement.
            It always amuses me how the cities get their knockers all knotted up when they learn someone has sort of closed off a small Granny Flat in the back of their house and rented that out to a cousin or somthing, they holer about “housing density” and “too many people per block” then they turn about and approve these monster crammed full “developments” with five times the density of the family with the small suite in the back to let out to a cawlidge stoont.

            But its all aobut revenue, isn’t it?

            • Like the story of Amazon thieves from people’s front door. I was asked about it.

              Lessee, seems like I mentioned Cholley Jack, the locked front gate and the half mile to the house plus something about a couple ammo pouches filled with 30 rd mags plus the ubiquitous 40 always loaded up.

              Then there would be my chasing them via Z 71 shooting out the window and the 3 S’s.

              • Some old guy in a 4 door Sierra drove up past our barn and up to the two neighbor houses and right back down again. Then he stopped at the entrance to our other neighbor’s driveway that crosses our land. I said “that’s about enough of that” and left the horses in the corral with Buttercup and walked across the pasture to intercept him. He said he was with the Census and was locating all the houses. I told him there was nobody up there (true, we were at the barn and our neighbors are on their honeymoon!).

                I think I scared the shit out of him. I didn’t threaten him but I had my holster unsnapped (already, for other reasons). Damn, what the hell did he THINK was going to happen when a strange vehicle goes nosing around in a rural neighborhood ???

                A few years ago some friends of ours about 10 miles away got their house broken into and cleaned out one Sunday while they were gone for the day.

  10. Least my electric company finally ditched the discount rate for electric for those electric cars at the end of 2018. Yup, us other electric customers were buying their power for their cars too……..

  11. EV’s are a scam. I’m not surprised to see CR shilling for EV’s. The morons there are a bunch of socialist, lefty wannabes.

    • CR is so biased to their own world view I couldn’t read their stuff any longer. That was when I was teenager. It was so obvious they were pushing their own agenda. Also how they ‘test’ is simply a BS way of doing it. Especially how they focus in on a weakness and change the tests to attack it. Then their surveys. Ugg. Just so much crap work.

  12. Wow…this just made me realize all of the taxes I’m paying when I fill the 44 gallon tank of my Excursion…. (Good thing my other vehicle only holds 38 gallons! 😉 )

    No wonder the average dude doesn’t realize how much in taxes they actually pay (Income, property, excise, etc.)…considering that WE can’t even always keep up with all of ’em!

    • Hi Nunz!

      Yup; I just recently stopped paying one – the annual “registration” fee… just another tax. It’s “only $60 but – dammit – that’s $60 I could put toward things of value to me, like food. Or pay the power bill. So I did just that. And didn’t pay them. It’s a small victory – and I realize they can “get” me if an AGW spots my out of date sticker. Well, fish heads for ’em all. At some point we have to take some kind of stand. This isn’t exactly Lexington green… but it’s a start 🙂

      • They will spot it.. they’re trained to have the eyes of shit hawks. I took the same stand. Got by with it for almost three years.. then I got popped.

      • Hey Eric!

        Man, if only there were enough people who’d do that all at the same time…. [Notice I didn’t say ‘enough of us, ’cause even if all of us did it at the same time, it wouldn’t even be a blip on the radar…].

        Ironically, there are enough of them who would gladly cast a jury ballot to throw us in jail; allow the confiscation of our property, and let the armed gov’t goons get away with murdering us for nothing more than not jotting some i or crossing some t….. Heh…we are so out-numbered.

        Just be careful out there- what with automated plate-readers and everything these days, it’s getting nearly impossible to get away with even the most innocuous forms of non-compliance. So many battles to choose; personally, I wouldn’t pick a $60 one- ‘specially when ya still have to sport the plate that comes back to your own name- But I sure envy you for doing it!

        It’s be just my luck, the first day I’d try something like that, somebody’d run into me while i was stopped at a light or parked in a parking space or something, and I’d come out to find the Three LittlePot-Bellied Pigs doing their thing……

        • Eric – best of luck to you for the stand….

          But…. here in the UK we have ANPR. They realised long ago our unarmed government workers are pretty useless at anything….. hence they brought in Automatic Number Plate Readers and installed in most police cars.

          So basically PC Plod just drives around doing his day to day ( visiting the doughnut shop, getting lunch, dancing in pride parades, responding to a mean facebook post) and as he does. If one of the cameras picks up a car which is not “taxed” and even “insured” (ie paid off the relevant gangsters) he can turn on the lights, pull you over, and seize your car and all sorts of other things. Or if the car is parked on a public road and he cant find you – he can just clamp the car and leave you a number for the relevant gangsters so you can sort yourself out..

          As you always say whatever bright idea we have here in the UK eventually reaches the US – im sure this will to (if it hasnt already).

          • Hi Nasir!

            That IS pretty much the way it is already in much of US. It may not be as fully implemented yet in the very rural areas, such as where Eric and I live…but in pretty much any city or metro area, they’d nab ya the first time a pig-mobile passed by your car.

            Hell, in NY, you’d be better off committing a real crime…’cause the penalties would likely be less. They’d mail ya for no registration; no valid inspection; no insurance (Even if you had it, it’s invalid if the reg. isn’t current)- They’d impound your vehicle, and it’d cost thousands to get it back; You’d get a few grand in tickets; have to go to court; and pay court costs and other penalties, etc. You’d be charged with a ridiculous fee per day of lapsed insurance….

            After that, if you could even get insurance again…it would literally cost ten times more than what you formerly paid…..

            The penalties are truly Dickensian. Go out and mug someone, and you’d get a free lawyer, and likely get off with no real penalty if you had no prior record…..

            • Once the piggos around here all have plate readers you’re going to see one Z 71 that’s unbelievably muddy…..year round.

              It’s been over 30 years ago a friend was pulled over and ticketed for a non-readable tag. The ossifer knew him and the pickup and knew he constantly pulled one trailer after the other.

              When you’re by yourself hooking up to a trailer the tag is most likely going to take a hit, esp. when you pull a lot of trailers with pins and not balls.

              • Can confirm. I once got pulled over by a policeman who had been writing a ticket for another motorist, he was notified by the automatic plate reader that I’d had a one-week lapse in my insurance coverage six months previously and chased me down the road to write me a ticket. Ticket, fine for letting the insurance lapse and a fine for every day of not carrying insurance.

    • Europeans complaining about US sales tax:


      On a recent trip to San Francisco it was always a surprise to see what to pay in stores. It was never as simple as just adding all the published prices. There was always the addition of taxes. Sometimes it was just an additional 50ct, but sometimes the increase in price was substantial. The most extreme case being a bag of apples with a advertised price of 1.99 but a final price of 4.50. Isn’t there a single VAT and how can I know the price to expect? If the taxes apply to everyone, why not simply publish the price including taxes?

      “Why don’t the just hide the taxes, like in Europe?”

      • Sometimes I wonder who is more ignorant and innumerate – the average European or the average American…. i always tell them here that at least in the US the most you will pay is 8%…. in the UK (and europe) everything is 20-25% !!! But god forbid the average fat dumb and happy consumer having to do some math and providing for the extra….

      • I keep scratching my head as to how even in “Sin” Francisco a $1.99 bag of apples goes out the door for $4.50 with SALES taxes (likely some corrupt sales clerk spotted a rube and put a few bucks in HER pocket), but appealing to have the tax HIDDEN sez it all!

        “Don’t bother me with the TRUTH”!!!

        I have no sympathy for dullards and/or COWARDS.

  13. Hey Eric, check out your tax chart. Good old Pennsylvania, highest fuel taxes in the country. Oh, and the highest turnpike toll in the US to boot.(Not on this chart.) I wonder what the keystone state is going to come up with more EV’s on the road? My state is very creative when it comes to finding new revenue streams.

    • The turnpike tolls have been going up every year for the past decade. Now I’ve come to find that the money wasn’t even being used for turnpike repairs, which means future increases will be even larger.

      More EV’s on the road? I don’t think I’ve ever seen one in Pa. It’s not a good place to own one.

      • I rarely see anything I’d call a car. There’s those little tall round turds and the big tall long things but mainly pickups. I did top an overpass Monday and see a fresh off the showroom floor 57 Chevy, white over yellow….with a/c, too hot to have the windows up…..made my day.

  14. Here’s a quick quiz just for fun. Which magazine is the more whored out, globalist propaganda tool?

    A. “Consumer Reports”
    B. Popular Mechanics?

      • Yeah, there are so many worthy contenders for this title.

        Personally, I’m going with Popular Mechanics due to their infamous, post-911, “Debunking” issue.

    • I used to really like Popular Mechanics until they come out with that September 11 “Pancake Theory BS”. Stopped buying them immediately .

      Never ever trusted CR. Could tell right off they were Corpgov BS’ers and had no clue of what they were discussing.

      • Yeah, Ken- CR became so obsessed with MPGs in the late 70’s/early 80’s, that they’d trash all of the good big cars because they didn’t get the same MPGs as some 2000 lb. Datsun B210….while lauding any pile-O-crap that got better mileage than a big car- from the Ford Fairmont (LOL!!!!) to the Dodge Omni and Chrysler K-cars…it became all about MPGs.

        Prior to that, they were honest. One year they’ praise the bulletproof Buick Electra 225 for being indestructible, reliable, and cheap to maintain/fix….the next they’d play it down by saying something like “Ya’d have to be crazy to buy a dinosaur like that! Even with it’s excellent repair history and record of dependability, it will drive you straight to the poor-house in fuel costs” [How do they know what my fuel budget is, or if I need to transport more than two adults and two toddlers that their lauded econoboxes can hold?]. Then they’d pimp some short-lived fragile FWD 2000 lb. econobox that was half rusted away before it left the showroom floor.

        And of course, they’d go solely by the EPA fuel economy ratings….which, at that time were WILDLY exaggerated (“40MPG Hwy” in reality worked out to about 28 hwy.- if you were lucky)

        • Hey Nunz,

          I realized CR was bullshit when I read their bicycle reviews. It was clear that the reviewers were extremely ignorant and could not distinguish between a poor quality assembly (the fault of the mechanic) and a poor quality bicycle. After that, I noticed their bias and ignorance afflicted car reviews as well.


          • Their electronics and appliance reviews suck too. They always downplay all the problems that the government regulations are causing those things.

            • Hi Rich,

              Yup. It creates an advertorial rip-tide effect: Almost everything written about consumer appliances begins with the premise (usually not stated but always assumed) that the folded in costs (and hassles and diminished longevity imparted by) government regs are desirable and justified. So we got more elaborate/expensive stuff that doesn’t last as long. It becomes impossible to find anything simple and lower cost… because it’s not made anymore.

              But which is better for the “environment” – a refrigerator without a digitized interface and a rugged motor that lasts for 30 years… or a ‘fridge that gets thrown away after less than ten?

            • I remember when they reviewed the Panasonic RF-2200, which was about the finest analog portable shortwave radio back in the day. The review was way off base; they panned the radio because it wasn’t as good as a tabletop receiver-well duh! For a portable, it was among the best.

              The better, more honest, more complete review of the RF-2200 was to be found in the World Radio & TV Handbook, which was a comprehensive guide to the world of radio, receivers, etc. Unlike CR, they took ads. That said, I’d trust one of their reviews over a CR review when it came to shortwave equipment.

              • CR tries to sell their publication because ‘they aren’t biased because they don’t have advertising’. I think since when do you have to have advertising to be biased? CR is one of the most biased publications I’ve ever encountered. They have their views and they bias so much of what they do.

                CR is obsolete IMO. Today online one can generally go right to the geeks on anything. A geek is going to tell me why A is good and B is bad and everything in between and his only bias is love of that subject. Read a thread of geeks arguing over it and you’ll be better informed on a product that most anyone on the planet.

                It’s the same reason why a geek publication on a particular thing was far more valuable with ads than CR would ever be.

          • Jer, that seems to be the modus-operandi of that rag/org.

            Appliance repairmen will laugh at what CR says about appliances. Locksmiths ridicule them on what they say about locks…photographers know what they say about cameras is a joke…

            I feel sorry for anyone who’d take their advice on anything…..

            They should call themselves “Consumer Rip-offs”.

          • I remember years ago when I used to see CR (Was it in the liberry..or maybe an ad for the rag?), and one of the headlines on the cover would be something like “Best Manual Can Opener”.

            Yeah…I know before I’ll shell-out $3 for an item whose engineering and quality-control are so crucial, I’ll do my research!

            And I doubt we could even take their word on THAT subject!

            • Nunz, I had to open half a dozen cans a couple days ago. I used 2 openers. If one wouldn’t work or had two places 180 degrees apart, I’d use the other to cut those places but had to use the first one on some cans the other just wouldn’t but.

              I wondered out loud is an old electric unit like we used to have would work on both type cans. Maybe I should have looked that up in CR.

              • Ever since I was a kid, I always thought: “If ya have to resort to an electric contraption just to open a tin can, it may be time for an assisted-living facility…” 😉

                I marvel every time I randomly walk down the kitchen small appliance aisle in a store…
                ‘Lectric can openers,
                Rice cookers,
                Spaghetti cookers,
                Egg cookers,
                A special doo-dad that cooks frozen pizzas…
                Iced-tea brewers…

                And I can’t figure out why a simple toaster oven (the one applaince I use- pretty much negates me having to use the big oven) costs more than a complicated microwave wave (which I’ve never used) of comparable size! (I paid 120 friggin’ dottars for my current toaster oven!)

                  • 8, ya need a popcorn popper!!!!

                    (For some reason, a pot with a lid and a pinch of erl no longer works…or so they’d have us believe!)

                    Gimme 3 pots and a good knife- that’s all I need in the kitchen (I have more, but that’s what I use 98% of the time)

                    • Nunz, I’ll use a pot and oil for popcorn but my favorite way is to buy the ears of popsorn. Stnad them up in a paper sack and turn the microwave on for 4 minutes(but don’t continue to cook when there’s no pop left”. Pull it out, cover it with butter and give it 5 minutes, then shake and turn and shake every direction. Perfectly buttered popcorn and In a sack you can re-use many times. It might be a bit greasy but I get that way myself sometimes. I dump it into a bowl and sprinkle it with cayenne pepper and salt. Get another batch started since it’s hard to stop…..eating.

                    • Heh, Jeremy, I rarely fry anything- but I DO have a few well-seasoned cast-iron frying pans….(The 2% I mentioned)- my favorite of which is an old one that was apparently made in Australia. Now that I keep it properly seasoned (It’s former owner din’t) that baby is slicker than any Teflon! (I freaking hate Teflon!).

                      And my mother has this old roasting pan, made of bumpy cast-iron, that used to belong to my Grandma- it’s gotta be around 100 years old. Stuff cooked in that pot comes like nothing else- it’s impossible to duplicate!

                    • Hey Nunz,

                      I’m a cast iron fanatic. I cook almost everything in it. I have a #3, #5, #6, #8, #10, #12 and a beautiful, very thin walled cast iron wok from China. I use all of them regularly.

                      I’m also a fan of toaster oven cooking.
                      This is the best I’ve found.


                      It’s pretty inexpensive and has a true bake feature (only bottom heat), roast (both) and broil (top).


                    • Oooo! Thanks for the link, Jeremy!

                      That oven is just the right size, and mine is pretty old and getting pretty funky, and all of the temperature markings have worn off.

                      Only thing that concerns me is the digital part….I mean, it would be nice in practice, as long as it’s durable.

                      Yeah, I use my toaster oven more than anything. Virtually the only time I use the “real” oven, is if I bake a full-sized pizza (16″).(100% whole-wheat, of course!)

                    • Hey Nunz,

                      It’s kind of half digital. It still has knobs for selection, time an temperature. I hope it’s still available as I want to buy a back up.

                      Cheers, Jeremy

                    • I check out Goodwill when I think about it.

                      Lots of good old cast stuff(it’s not edgy)but no toaster ovens. Since they get dirty looking and are large, they probably go right into the dumpster still working like new.

                • I did have a popcorn popper, circa 1970 and it worked damn good.

                  I have cast iron all the way to 14 and some round griddles, one of which is a 14. A big deep one for fish frying and such. I need a top for making biscuits.

        • Hi Nunz – I really don’t get the obsession with mpg’s, it’s just one of many points to consider in purchasing a vehicle. I’d much rather have reliability and longevity even if it used more gas than some p.o.s. with a lawnmower engine. Yeah, if you commute 100 miles each way every day then the cost of gas is a consideration but that’s nobody’s business but yours. People have been so brainwashed by the constant yammering about “peak oil”(sic) that they can’t do the simple math that spending a thousand bucks or so more on gas for a car that will last 20+ years is way better than having to buy a new car every 10 years that gets better mileage. You just can’t fix stupid.

          • Hi Mike,

            Yup! Gas mileage is a variable value – the degree of value assigned by the individual. People ought to be free to buy what they want and need – as expressed by their willingness to pay for it. Some people don’t mind paying more for gas – in order to get other values, such as a lower-cost vehicle or a bigger/more capable one. Conversely, some people object to paying more for a car – or in the form of smaller size/decreased capabilities – for the sake of saving gas. Neither should be forced to act – or spend – contrary to their own free wishes.

          • Amen, Mike!

            MPG is the last thing I think about, personally- who the hell are they to tell me that it must be my priority?

            And the ironic thing is: They do all this to forcibly make these cars get higher and higher MPGs…but the net effect on “saving gas” is zero, since people just drive more.

            I mean, a few decades ago, people used to go to work; the store; maybe visit relatives or go on a trip once in a while….but life still largely centered around the home.

            Today…sheesh! I can’t believe what I typically see: People are constantly running here and there. Cars get better mileage, so they are willing to live further from work and commute longer distances; Literally every weekend, half the people I see are taking some trip of a few hundred miles to go to some dopey attraction or festival or something; The kids don’t play in the backyard or neighborhood; they are constantly being shuttled to organized activities. People are CONSTANTLY going somewhere now.

            We went from one-car families…to two car families…to 5 or 6 car families….

            I don’t know why half of myu neighbors live in the country here….they spend so much time driving into town, they may as well just live in town.

            Some of my neighbors go to church on Sunday morning…come how; eat and do a few things; then go back to church that evening; Then go again on Wednesday night. If they have kids they may make additional trips during the week for various activities; If the parents are involved in the choir or other activities, etc. they make even more trips… It’s not uncommon for church to be at LEAST 10 miles away- often more. With all of the round trips, they’re easily doing several hundred miles per week just going to church!

            THAT is what they’ve accomplished by forcing super-efficient cars on everyone.

            • Maybe they’re praying for VW…..or more EV subsidy.

              I’d pray for that deuce and a quarter eric mentioned. Make mine gold, I always liked them in that color. Don’t think I ever saw a Vista Cruiser in black. Now that would be fine. They were great boat pullers since you never knew they were pulling anything and would pull their boat, the FWD idiot and his boat out all at the same time. If the ramp was slick enough, you might hear a tire spin but at no point did you ever hear one strain.

  15. When they put an EV on the market that the “average” person can actually afford, then I’ll consider one.

    They also have to fix the “lifecycle” problem with the short lived (and possibly deadly) batteries.

    Until then, “no thanks.”

    (Probably be a long wait.)

    • Ditto, LJ!

      An EV would have to cost less up front than an otherwise similar non-EV, to make up for the EV’s shorter useful service life. The whole thing is a con – the greatest con I have witnessed in my life.


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