Reader Rant: Thanks!

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Here’s the latest reader rant, along with my reply!

Zane writes: Just writing to say thanks. I’ve been sharing your links and articles on forums when you see people say “Eletric carz are teh futurer!!” (Exaggerating the idiocracy). Not the best at debating, but I always cite your articles and shared that video you posted in one with the phone battery getting stabbed and bursting into flames, then take a Google image of an EV chassis with the batteries on the floorboard saying imagine if you got into a bad accident with that. Besides that, I also mention that the only reason EVs are considered the future is because Uncle and the Globalists are pushing it, and that it wouldn’t be such if you removed the subsidies (which Orange Man did) and the manufactured hype while also suppressing the dangers and weaknesses such as batteries being affected by heat/cold, accelerating and using electronics and stuff drain battery, length it takes to charge battery and that youtube video of that yuge line, etc. Third thing I touch on is it’s been tried 100 years ago as you’ve mentioned and the same problems persist today, including range anxiety. That’s just strangers on the Internet, I’m sure it’s more effective with my friends and family. Either way, just wanted to thank you for the articles and links, I truly appreciate it. Keep doing what you’re doing, keep being awesome and keep up the great work!

My reply: It’s my pleasure! Or rather, it’s my obligation. What else can I do – as a car guy – when confronted by an anti-car agenda? More precisely, an anti-mobility agenda. That is what EVs are ultimately all about.

It isn’t coincidental that Elon Musk – who has served as the John the Baptist figure for the EV Cult – is the scion of a family of technocrats. His grandfather was one of the first of this tribe. Technocrats are a species of coercive collectivist who base their collectivism not on politics but on technology. They wish – they insist – that society be organized on the basis of the assembly line and the scientific method. That the individual contrarian who doesn’t wish to be governed by technology – that is, by technocrats who wield technology – is a stick-in-the-mud who must be “nudged” in the right direction.

Electric cars are a technocratic wet dream because they are much more easily controlled by technology. IC cars – especially older IC cars – exist much more independently; which is a stick-in-the-mud for the technocrats.

The problem was – how to sell EVs? For all the reasons discussed on this site, EVs are a hard sell because of their functional gimps and high cost. So they sold “climate change.” And then mandated (and subsidized) electric cars as the necessary and can’t-be-criticized solution to this manufactured problem.

Take away the “climate change” shibboleth and the EV house of cards collapses. “Ludicrous Speed” is appealing, but only so many people can afford it. Most people can’t afford to wait hours on line for a recharge.

Without “climate change,” EVs become what they have been since about 1920: A more expensive, less convenient form of transportation – by dint of which, they become like those absurd but sometimes interesting gadgets one sees advertised in the Sharper Image catalogue – like a life-sized Darth Vader bubble gum machine for $6,000.

. . .

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

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8 COMMENTS

  1. I would be all over having an EV, as a second car, if it were not for the price and insurance cost issues. For trips to town shopping, visiting or appointments an EV would be great. However, I NEED a 4×4 long box truck many times a year.

    My full sized C/C L/B truck cost <$3000 used. It only gets 12mpg but it is bulletproof reliable. Even the cheapest EV available in Canada is ~$42,000new ($12,000 used cheapest I found, but a used EV? No.) and it certainly can't handle the 30" of snow we just got.

    The $40,000 difference is about 8000 gallons of fuel. Or about 96,000 miles in the truck. Or about 900 trips to the city. More than I will do in the rest of my life.

    I can carry well over a ton in the truck + 6 people. When I looked at a Leaf, me and three of my larger friends would exceed its load rating, without luggage.

    Even if the juice for charging the EV was free, the cost, lack of practicality and capability make owning and running a low mpg monster truck a much better option.

    YMMV

    • Hi Anon,

      “I would be all over having an EV, as a second car…”

      Look for a used Chevy Volt, you can get them really inexpensively. Gen 1’s are cheaper and get 35-40 miles of pure EV range, Gen 2’s (2016–2019) are more expensive but still relatively cheap, and get about 50 miles of pure EV range, more than sufficient for most daily driving needs. Both can be charged overnight on standard equipment. I recently bought a pristine 2013 for less than 7K. So far it has exceeded my expectations, fun to drive and uses almost no gas for my daily driving needs.

      Cheers,
      Jeremy

    • Hi Anon,

      I forgot to mention that it suffers from none of the significant problems of pure EV’s. You can hop in it and drive across country, no planning a trip around charging station and waiting to “fill up”. Also, no additional expensive equipment needed at home.
      Cheers,
      Jeremy

      • Thanks Jeremy, for a town commuter, might be a good cost/benefit ratio. But the cost to insure a second vehicle here would be around $1000 minimum, for zero coverage. Plus buying the car would make the entire proposal a huge net loss.

        A round trip to the nearest city, just there and back is 120 miles. So $50 in fuel in the monster truck. The “saving” by driving even a $10,000 EV just are not there. Even if I make 20 trips to the city per year (I do maybe 12), $1000 in fuel, the same cost of simply insuring a second vehicle, never mind buying/maintaining it.

        Also, should the engine, transmission, rear or front end explode spectacularly, no shortage of replacement units, cheap. Even a brand new crate engine is only about $4000 for my truck.

        YMMV and my case is probably not typical. But even if I lived in a suburb and commuted daily like I used to, a $3000 truck and $40,000 of fuel makes more sense to me than a $42,000 nowhere near as practical car that still has to be fueled.

        And I won’t buy anything after 2000m.y. anyway.

      • Hi Jeremy, I would love to get a Chevy Volt for all the reasons you listed; I rarely drive more than 30 miles in a day but do take the occasional vacation trip to the mountains. A Volt would be perfect for that but they’re scarce as the proverbial hen’s teeth. A friend has one and he promised to call me first if he ever decides to sell it but I think I’m in for a long wait ☹️

        • Hi Mike,

          I bought mine in Dallas while visiting the family over the holidays. I found about 15, drove 4 and bought one. They’re scarce in Santa Fe, but I had no problem finding one on Dallas.

          Cheers,
          Jeremy

  2. Hey Eric, thanks for posting this first of all

    Wanna help me with the fire issue, as someone did point out cars catch on fire too but there’s a difference between an ICE fire and EV

    Said so far, primary difference is where the power train is (front usually vs sitting on top of it), giving you more time to react, and you can take an extinguisher to a gas fire, EV probably wouldn’t make much of a difference

    Besides that, there was the gas tank, but not every cars a pinto and because of that, unless ya get nailed wrong, doesn’t automatically explode, plus again, you’re not on top of it.

    • gasoline tanks are under the back seat of passenger vehicles to better protect them in crashes. Not there is something fundamentally wrong with gas tanks behind the rear axle, but the media loves to go after such cars.

      Also the Pinto suffers because it was targeted by the media, not for any real defect. It wasn’t great in rear end collisions but it wasn’t horrific either for its era and class. The things Ford was a accused of were distortions.

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