Papier Mache Cars

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Flimsy construction used to be one of the defining attributes of a cheap car  – along with the absence of even basic amenities like air conditioning, which was a defining attribute of a luxury car not all that long ago.

Modern cars – even luxury cars – are all cheaply built.

If you’ve raised the hood of one, you will know all about it. The metal is so light it can be held up by a flimsy little metal rod – and the metal is so thin, you can see it flex and (if so inclined) could bend it with your bare hands. It’s often not much more substantial than a piece of cardboard; a cat walking across it might leave more than just paw prints.

Fenders are the same – and new cars don’t even have bumpers anymore. Something even the Chevettes and Pintos as Yugos did have. You could, therefore, bump into something and not damage the car.

Or at least, damage it less.

Today’s cars sustain expensive damage if bumped at all – sometimes thousands of dollars’ worth – in part because there is literally nothing to protect the expensive plastic and thin metal panels from being damaged.

The occupants are protected.

Underneath the skin, modern cars are very sturdy – designed to absorb and deflect the force of a crash away from the people inside the car. These structural parts are also very heavy.

Which is why rest of the car is so light – and flimsy. The papier mache exterior panels make up for the bulk underneath.

The result is a very safe – and very fragile – car. Even luxury cars, which have flimsier exterior body panels than Chevettes, Pintos and Yugos had. They are far more easily damaged – and much more expensive to fix.

But they do keep you “safe.”

If this seems odd, it’s because you may not know about the conflict between two irreconcilable federal fatwas.

Saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety – vs. fuel economy.

I mock  the first – because a car isn’t unsafe unless it’s defective in some way. For example, a steering wheel that comes off the column while you’re driving . . . or a car that steers itself into the path of another car, in the manner of “Autopiloted” electric cars. (The government is oddly unconcerned about the “safety” of these cars.)

If car A doesn’t hold up as well as car B if crashed into a fixed object like a tree at 50 MPH, it is less crashworthy – a different thing.

The government may have legitimate business adjudicating tort cases of unsafe cars crashing. But it has no more legitimate business decreeing how crashworthy a car must be than it has decreeing how many layers of clothes an adult must wear in the wintertime.

Of course, the government – meaning, the busybody officeholders who imagine themselves our caretakers, at gunpoint – does decree how crashworthy new cars must be.

And crashworthiness comes at a cost.

The crashworthiness of a car is established by crashing it into fixed objects or crashing things into the car. “Stars” – the vehicular Soviet equivalent of Orders of Lenin – are awarded based on how well (or not) the car absorbs the impact.

But this has nothing to do with whether the car is likely to crash. And if it doesn’t crash – perhaps because it is agile and maneuverable and the driver enjoys excellent visibility, enabling him to avoid crashing – then it is very safe, indeed – no matter how many “stars” it has.

Or not.

But the Five Star crashworthy car is very heavy – whether it ever crashes or not.

And because it is heavy, the crashworthy car is also flimsy – in order to “achieve compliance” with the other busybody-at-gunpoint fatwa regarding the gas mileage all new cars must deliver, else their owners get their pockets picked by the government, in the form of “gas guzzler” taxes – as punishment for choosing to spend more of their own money on gas.

The weight added to achieve compliance with the crashworthiness fatwa is subtracted from exterior body panels, in order to comply with the mileage fatwa..

The panels get flimsier with each new fatwa uptick.

Some aren’t even made of steel anymore.

Aluminum is being used to shave off even more weight. A number of new cars – and even trucks – which used to be tough – are made entirely of aluminum, as far as their exterior body panels. These panels are even more vulnerable to damage – and much more expensive to fix.

Plastic bumpers – and plastic grills – are de rigueur today because chromed steel bumpers, which would protect the car – and definitely the truck – from being expensively damaged by minor impacts that don’t threaten the “safety” of the car’s occupants in the slightest – are much too heavy.

Well, too superfluously heavy . . . in terms of complying with the MPG fatwa.

And so, they’ve been eliminated.

The only way to get a car to average 35-plus MPG (the current mandatory MPG minimum) and achieve compliance with the crashworthiness fatwa is to make it heavy on the inside and light on the outside.

Voila!

It didn’t used to be this way – mainly because it used to be up to us, the people buying cars, to decide the appropriate balance between how much a hit a car could take and how many MPGs it got.

And it was up to the courts to deal with unsafe cars. 

The busybodies, being unable to abide other people deciding such things – any things – for themselves – interposed themselves and imposed the consequences on the rest of us.

It’s a very odd thing, assuming one actually believes in the verities about the “freedom” we’re supposed to enjoy but don’t.

My ’76 Trans-Am’s hood is a massive slab of metal that weighs probably about 75 pounds and is held up by two heavy stamped-steel hinges with springs. A cheesy little prop rod (as most modern cars have) won’t cut it. The fenders are probably three times as thick as a modern car’s fenders.

It would never pass modern crash tests – but it can take a hit without being totaled.

Is it “unsafe”? It hasn’t crashed in 44 years, so it seems to be quite safe. It is also – ironically – very light.

At least, comparatively.

Despite having a stamped steel hood you can’t bend by hand – that weighs probably 75 pounds and requires two heavy steel hinges with big springs to hold it up (as opposed to a cheesy little prop rod, as most new cars have) and a huge cast iron V8, the Orange Barchetta weighs a mere 3,750 pounds.

A new Ford Mustang GT – with an aluminum engine weighs 3,825 pounds. It has papier mache panels – including a hood you could bend with your bare hands, held up by a flimsy prop rod.

It’s definitely more crashworthy, of course.

. . .

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

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156 COMMENTS

  1. The car that likely best qualifies as “Paper Mache” was the DDR’s Trabant. Although it’s basic structure is a conventional steed unibody, due to limits under the COMECON (aka “Warsaw Pact”) central planning dictates, only so much steel was allocated, as well as no sheet metal stamping equipment. What would have otherwise been capable in the DDR had long been carried off to the Soviet Union or to Poland and/or Czechoslovakia as “war reparations” in wake of the Third Reich’s defeat. Therefore, the East Germans, still being Germans and therefore uncannily creative and ingenious, developed a thermosetting plastic they named Duroplast, which was used for the body parts. This Duroplast was made primarily from leftover “ooze”, if you will, from the chemical plants in the Dresden and Chemnitz (Karl-Marx-Stadt) areas, which, BTW, there’s still an extensive amount of environmental damage (so much for socialism being “eco-friendly”), and cotton waste from the Soviet textiles industry. Sure, the vehicle itself was an abomination, with its ancient two-stroke engine that was dirty and not terribly efficient, and although it looked good when new, being that the demand for the vehicle wasn’t from the consumer, the DDR never changed it, so it looked dated before too long. However, the “Trabbi” was actually renowned for being quite crash-worthy, though that wasn’t by design! Of course, they squeaked and rattled a lot too, and handled worse than an old Dodge Power Wagon, but they were good little socialist “Kleinen Panzers”.

  2. While I am generally sympathetic to Eric’s point about government mandates, there is one major factor which seems to be overlooked. Cars and bumpers and hoods can be replaced. You cannot. Sure you can be repaired but given the large number of traffic fatalities, this can’t be ignored. Future generations will wonder at how we as a society/planet tolerated such huge dangers. Thousands dead each year.

    Better engineering has saved many lives, even at the cost of crumpled vehicles not worth or able to be repaired. Personally I don’t see why a heavy hood is such a great idea. Evidently those don’t provide much actual protection to occupants. Yes, more repairs to lighter hoods, but what today is made the same as in 1955? I believe in full consumer choice, including choosing to ride in a deathmobile if that’s what you want. Most will prefer better survivability in a crash. Years ago Volvo thrived on that reputation alone.
    I prefer a big heavy sedan, 4 door, to a smaller vehicle. It’s not my driving I worry about.

    • As you concede, Volvo was already there, years ago, for people who wanted to maximize crash worthiness.

      It’s the intended “unintended” consequences of metastasis — more ends against the middle — I object to…but only for the exercise, since cancer ain’t subject, is immune, to debate.

    • Hi Muggles,

      To be clear: I am not suggesting people drive cars that are less – or more – crashworthy. I am demanding that they be free to choose for themselves.

      Obesity and diabetes “kill” thousands, too. Should the government be empowered to fine people who eat too much candy? Or threaten everyone with fines who doesn’t exercise regularly? Some people (e.g., Bloomberg) think so! And they think so because it empowers them to control others. To control everyone.

      I think differently.

      I think a free man has the right to assume what someone here called the dignity of risk; to weigh for himself the pros and cons and to accept whatever consequences (good and bad) flow from their choices. To not be controlled – and to control no one else.

      This is freedom. This is liberty.

      More coming as this is a topic worth spending more time on!

      • That’s what it comes down to, Eric. Those that push these socialist nonsensical ideas do so with the subtle, and, at times, NOT so subtle, notion that you’re the PROPERTY of the state, so it has the inherent authority to tell you what to do with your body, or what risks you may take, because “They” OWN your body, not YOU.

        Long live Edgar Friendly, and Cocteau’s as asshole!

  3. $35K buys you a flimsy car that an errant bicycle could do damage to. Fake global warming…the mother of all evils. Before long, cars will be bump and dump. Virtually throwaways, if they aren’t all ready.

    • The absurdity is that these pieces of shit are heavy! Delicate around the edges, and delicate mechanically/electronically- so they are already disposable, ’cause it simply doesn’t pay to repair them once out of warranty. Meanwhile, the cars and wagons we used to have that weighed the same as these things do, were comfortable, bulletproof, and had huge trunks/cargo areas which could carry more than many of today’s pick-ups, with their 3′ beds.

      • Hi Nunz!

        I ma hoarding all the money I can spare to fund the purchase of a mid-late ’70s GM dreadnought. This will be – along with my old truck – probably the last cars I’ll ever buy.

        PS: The woman I’ve been hanging out with digs this; hence my digging her!

        PS: The Uber Clover has “posted” 17 replies in the spam queue… relentless and pointless!

        • Mornin’ Eric!

          Heh, nab one of those casrs as soon as you can- the prices are going up literally every day! Been seeing a ’73 Caddy Fleetwood on CL for $6900….if I had use for a car (as opposed to a truck) I’d nab it!

          Check it out:
          https://bgky.craigslist.org/cto/d/bowling-green-1973-cadillac-fleetwood/7067606772.html

          Dayum! A goil who’s into self-sufficiency AND practical old cars? Too good to be true! I’d do a background check on her- seriously! They’re so truly rare….some feign it, ’cause they’re just looking to hide-out/escape something.

          But real ones do exist…and if you’ve found one…WOW!

          I was selling some calves years ago- and this fambly came to look at them. Lil’l Mexican guy, with Mexican children….but the wife was a gringo- originally from Indianapolis or Shitcago or some such. She was nice- just the kind I like- not classically “beautiful” but short and a little plump and cute- and they were into self-sufficiency. She loved my place, and seemed kind miffed that they lived on a busy road; she really loved the rural thing and self-sufficiency- but I think the hubby was just doing what Mexicans do.

          If I would have met someone like her when I was young….it would’ve sucked, ’cause i well might’ve married her!

          Sounds like you may have a real “catch” there! I hope so; you deserve it. I wish you all the best! Maybe that’s what you need to finally motivate you to get out of this gulag! I mean, moving far away when you can take the other half with ya- and when you’re thus a more self-contained unit, then doesn’t seem as foreboding.

          There may be hope for you yet! 😀

        • There’s a few problems with your idea of the “land battleship”, though I wish you well in your pursuit of same.

          (1) Parts availability of a mid-70s to mid-80s vehicle is ALREADY a “bitch”, and it ain’t gonna get any better. I suggest obtaining a “donor” vehicle, one with a blown engine that the prior owner gave up on, but a straight body. As well as stock up on things like air, oil, and fuel filters, plus a couple of carb rebuild kits for that Rochester Quadrajet, including at least one spare throttle body. A spare alternator and/or starter, as well as “rubber” (belts and hoses, or consider doing a serpentine belt conversion) would also be a good idea.

          (2) Even if you solve the problem of keeping the old battleship road-worthy, you may run into ANOTHER problem not so easily solved…keeping it LEGAL. Too many states, mine own of “Calipornia” included, are on a vendetta against vintage iron, citing emissions and/or S-A-A-A-A-A-F-T-E-E-E-E. As the fixing up of old cars is gradually fading (because the upcoming generation of “soy boys”, raised by their mothers and/or effeminate fathers, have no interest and develop no practical skills), there will likely be less political gravitas to oppose the “Fatwas”, as you put it, of your state, Virginia, especially with that commie rat Northham in the governor’s mansion, that either outright ban your beast or put so many bureaucratic hoops that it won’t be worthwhile.

          • Alternators and starters are easily rebuilt. There’s plenty transmission to replace the originals which I would do to get an OD gear. I don’t know what a machine shop would charge to put liners in an engine but that’s a great way to go and they’re much harder and last longer than the cast iron you could go forever with good rings and pistons.

            If you really want to, a lot of water pumps can be rebuilt but they were always cheap enough to replace as rebuilts or new. Changing to a newer style a/c compressor is easy peasy, just need a different mount and hoses which will need to be changed anyway.

            If you buy a pickup there’s plenty of everything for them at a few parts providers and most of the stuff is better than original.

  4. As we all know, this is all about government controlling every aspect of our lives. Everything they take control of – vehicles, our bodies, wars, the economy, education, drugs and medical treatment, insurance, and much more – all become way worse off because of their control and involvement. And at the same time what little freedom we supposedly have left slips away incrementally. I’m glad I’m old enough that unless I live to be very old, I won’t be around to see the worst of what America is bound to become.

    • I’m not sure what you consider to be “the worst of what America is bound to become,” but I suspect that your worst is a lot worse than mine, because I spent the first half of my 65 years ignoring what most Americans continue to. As Americans continue to revel in what they should consider themselves grovelling in, the telescreen will be as apocryphal as it was in 1948, when Orwell did his best Eisenhower. The fact that I didn’t replace my last television when it was stolen in 1987, while I was circulating a petition to get Dr. Ron Paul on the ballot in North Dakota, becomes a more important reason why I will probably never get a smartphone. If I wind up with a smartphone, it will be because it is the cheapest way to maintain telephonic connectivity, and it will be the most underutilized digital device I’ve ever owned. If Starlink goes live, my cellphone will probably go away.
      Individual freedom is an individual accomplishment, and totally dependent upon how dependent you make yourself to TPTB. Today is the best day to begin to assert your personal liberty.
      The vast majority of Americans, and especially those who think that Trump has improved things, are not part of those who can truthfully say “as we all know.” Buy some gold and silver while you can still afford it.

  5. If you ever get your new aluminum Ford truck hit you will wish it was paper mache. A guy at one of my client’s sites got hit in his, not even terribly bad the truck was driveable. He showed me the pictures. The first repair estimates were $12k – the truck was just a few months old – by the time they finished the bill was $38K, the insurance guy told him if they knew it was that much they’d have totaled the truck.

    Imagine how much gas the aluminum saved – I say a negligible amount for him, but significantly enough for Fords CAFE numbers. You can buy a helluva lot of gas for that kind of money.

    • Alex, How dare you. They save that gas so Greta doesn’t get so screwed around by “us”. If it were up to her, we’d use a wagon and mules and only the most efficient mules and wagons. Even if the mules could get by on eating dirt, there would be terrible consequences for the environment. Just listen to the FSM and such as Greta and do what you’re told….dammit.

      • I’d chose a donkey over a mule for the same reason why some southern Californians have, because they can feed themselves in a field full of weeds while having a smaller carbon footprint than the silly little girl from Sweden.
        One of the reasons I stay in Parker, Arizona for the winter is the $2.339 that gas costs at Terrible’s instead of the $2.599 it does at Running Man. Gasbuddy can explain.

        • Bill, I filled up for $2.02/gal yesterday. I was pleased. I had paid $2.299 the week before. I get 10 gallons down and fill up again. It helps in keeping water out of that stuff that passes for fuel.

          • $2.339 is pretty low with California being a minute’s drive from the pump, which is behind the station. Their price in the front of the station is $2.899, tying with the highest in town. Their rear credit price, $2539, is close to the local average price. They have a big electric sign next to the cheap pumps, but only the locals seem to see it. I didn’t notice it until a local laundromat owner and seasonal friend pointed it out to me.
            I don’t burn much poking around town, but I fill up before a trip to Quartzsite or Havasu, where the prices are really high being on and near interstates.

    • Where I live, running into a deer is a real hazard. A co-worker of mine had a couzin who hit a deer. It went through the windshield and killed him. He was driving a car. Three years ago, I hit a deer in my minivan. Luckily, no one was hurt, except the deer. But there was over $2000 damage to the van. When I bought my truck, a 15 year old full-sized Ford, the first thing that I bought for it was a big, heavy, “deer bumper”. A couple of years ago, after dark, a large deer ran out in front of my truck and I hit him. Hard. At about 60 mph. Result ? Dead deer but no damage to my truck or family. Steel vs plastic or aluminum ? Choose steel.

      • Sorry to hear about your friend. I had a friend who forwarded a deer wreck that killed the deer and driver of a van and there was nothing but blood from front to rear. It’s the reason everybody in this country(we have big deer)has Ranch Hand guards on the front of a pickup. They’re more common than not having one.

        I know a woman driving a 250 Ford diesel who hit a big, black bull at 70 with a Ranch Hand front end and it didn’t damage the pickup at all. We have, like so many places, huge hogs, deer and plenty livestock(not that often since we keep our fences in good repair). Even people with vans and sometimes cars have deer and hog guards if they have to go to work or drive in the dark.

        • I think that my deer bumper is a Ranch Hand also. On the other hand, a friend of mine who was driving a 1954 Corvette (back before they were worth much) came up over a hill and hit a cow broadside and suffered only minor injuries. My friend, that is. The cow was history as well as the car. So luck is sometimes involved.

      • Hi Nathan,

        I happened to be able to perform a real-world test using essentially the same vehicles – except one had a plasticized front end without an external front bumper. This is my ’02 Nissan Frontier. Before my divorce, I also owned a ’99 Frontier – same basic truck except the ’99 had an external metal bumper (and glass/sealed beam headlights).

        Hit deer with both trucks.

        The ’99 suffered much less damage – and it was repairable-by-me damage. I used a come-along strap tied to a big tree to pull the bumper back into alignment (not perfect, of course, but close enough) and I was able to replace the broken right headlight for about $25.

        When I hit a deer with the ’02, it tore the plastic “fascia” off the front end and broke one of the plastic headlight assemblies. Cost a bit more $2k at the body shop to have it fixed.

        I wish I still had the ’99!

        • eric, like my 93 and my 82 diesel pickups, they had pushbars from the factory on the bumper. And that 82 would knock big trees down like nothing and never had a dent on the bumper. Due to the design of the front end and the curve of the bumper on the 93 I avoided pushing with it. It’s not even an option on the 2000 Z 71 with its “pedestrian friendly” front end.

  6. Assume the worst. Because it is largely true. And because – just in case – the deck is stacked to get as much fix in as possible to insure the worst will make beast o’ burden asses outta’ u & me.

    When socialized “medicine” really got rolling – for a partial of the much larger example — the rolling stock on the highways & byways was all close relations to Shermans & Tigers.

    But bein’ inside those tanks when they often & invariably smashed into each other & into damn near anything else you can think of, too, made Sherman tiger mincemeat outta’ the drivers & passengers.

    And as the cost of putting mincemeat back together again into spam cans restored went moonshot parabolic & was “being paid for” outta’ “the people’s public treasury” pocket, why that naturally gave “the people” every right to “control costs” by insisting on evermore safety. (The “progress” made via battlefield “lifesaving” – guffaw – figures in, too. Born on the fourth o’ gimlet-eyed jewel•eye.)

    Like most collective politicized insistences, that also simultaneously gave the sharks – those flying tigers – even more ends to play against the middle.

    Metastasis. Cancer has just gotta’ run its course. And what “replaces” cancer when it has been “defeated”? Mere remission.

    Tony beast ’o burden Bourdain (& then his tank hit the wall):

    “Assume the worst. About everybody. But don’t let this poisoned outlook affect your job performance. Let it all roll off your back. Ignore it. Be amused by what you see and suspect. Just because someone you work with is a miserable, treacherous, self-serving, capricious and corrupt asshole shouldn’t prevent you from enjoying their company, working with them or finding them entertaining.”

    Gov’s a strawman, mang. It be da’ peeps o’ the parental-political trash midden middle, & lower down, cryin’ out for middeness relief in mindless monotonousness to them they’ve decided is uber upper the midden.

    Is why despite any & all “heads” lopped in “history’s” loop, it ain’t ever made a damn bit o’ difference.

    Kill ‘em all? Impossible. The queue o’ replacements extends all the way to the bottom.

    Look at the retard cherry “atop” right now, for example (pay no attention to the soda jerks who plopped him there). That succubus was dredged from muck, died maraschino fd&c red 40, & the gobblers gobbled. Cuz that’s what gobblers do.

    • @ozymandias- Your post is as confused as your name. I know your rap is cute and all, and it makes you feel ‘smart’, but here is a hint- most of the readers here are NOT homeless crack or meth addicts from LA or NYC and we do not get your lingo. English. Use it and more readers will .understand you (dig our rap).

      • Fred, I’m 70 and I don’t have a problem with it at all. In fact, I dig it. But that’s just me and I don’t pretend to speak for any one else. I have endured the succubus and been entertained by their/his/her bs. Instead of going off the deep end because he/she is a succubus, I can handle them. While he should have said “dyed maraschino fd&c red 40, I get it.

        • I was not just harshing on him because he doesn’t talk like me- I really did not get what he was saying, so I don’t know whether I agree with him or disagree. He may be an OK guy but I don’t know what he was saying.

          • Fred, I think people who write like that purposely do so to obscure the clear meaning- thus, later on, when called on some point, they can say “No, that’s not what I meant, ya big dummy!”.

                • Whatcha’ gonna’ do2, bad boys2, when who ya’ need to call – the ghost-in-the-machine-busters – don’t exist?

                  If Groundhog Day, the Bill Murray version, could actually happen, then the poetry’d prevail…eventually.

                  Maybe it is in process?*

                  Who knows how long it took Bill the bastard to become Bill the Mensch…& get into Andie’s panties.

                  Eons, maybe.

                  But flicks & songs gotta’ fit the moneymen’s slots.

                  (*I doubt it. At the least, this juncture, I’ll short hell outta’ the proposition, cuz its an even bigger scam than mortgage-backed securities “were.”)

                    • Usta’ be easier to get away with “the allusion eludes me cuz I didn’t see the movie.”

                      But internet(serenity)now(!), that “elude” translates to willful self-eluding.

                      So the Alienation franchise could be doubly worth your while…in Kentucky (or some Kentuckians) no one can hear you scream.

                    • I don’t sully my senses with the crap that Hollywood spews, except for very cases, usually from very long ago.

                    • Nunzio…what ya’ get out of anything is a function of what you bring to it.

                      And ‘long ago’ is yet another twinky defense.

        • Eight…ha.

          I was someplace once upon a time where the spellers & grammarians & linear line-drawers were an infestation.

          So I turned the checker off & typed faster. Sometimes I closed my eyes, too – & I never learned to touch-type.

          Never did reconnect the checker.

          And it still flushes chukars, from time to time.

          All that said, still gonna’ go with heads soaked in fd&c red 40 is just as dead as Zed, even if they do keep zombie’ing along.

      • Sorry, I’m with Fred. I started reading that mess, and couldn’t follow at all. If you’re trying to make a point, best to use easy to read, common language. If you don’t care whether anyone gets you or not, well then, go ahead and be as obtuse as you like.

        • Ditto! I have no idea what he’s saying 97% of the time- and I’m not going to spend time trying to figure it out (It often seems to be contradictory or non-committal anyway or just plain nonsense).

          I read many of the comments rather quickly- almost skimming in many cases….don’t have time to figure out the Lewis-Carroll-esque stuff.

          Better to write sim,ply and as clearly as possible to express one’s opinion as efficiently as possible if one really has something of substance to say. Unless one is on poetry forum, it’s the ideas that matter.

          • Poetry is where the best ideas are, the most truth is, found.

            You playin’ dumb on purpose here, to try & recover some pelt lost the other day? That Child Owning Parents – bad boys, bad boys, who ya’ gonna’ call — or Chronic Obstructive Parent Disease (It ain’t my fault! I got’s a disease!) thread.

            Skimmer doth protest too much, is clogged with windblown leaves … you don’t have time? Guffaw! Dude, you got posts pouring outta’ every orifice, you practically live here.

            • LOL! Dude, you are the one who “lost a pelt” re child ownership, by exposing yourself as a statist.

              Yes, my posts are frequent and often long- and I make no apologies, because I actually have something to say- or offer a unique perspective- and while I may not be the most articulate or concise writer (I’m not a very cunning linguist) at least I don’t use 11 paragraphs of allusions and nonsense and pseudo Cockney rhyming slang to express a thought which could be stated in one sentence.

              • You hold up the state’s ownership of your house as worthy of emulation in the ownership, aka slavery, of your kids…& I’m the statist.

                Like I wrote before, youse lost.

                And not uniquely, either.

                But even your thoughts aren’t as one dimensional as you believe – that’s just the lens of your limited imagination burning holes in your emperor “robes.”

                • Ah! Now it is more apparent where you are coming from!

                  The state did not create my house, and has no legitimate claim to it, just as the state had no hand in creating one’s children.

                  Children are a product of their parents, from being conceived, to being nurtured in the womb, to being raised until such time as they are capable of being fully self-sufficient beings.

                  No one else has claim nor authority over them, except those who created and raised them. The child can not claim self ownership, as it is physically and mentally not capable of such; and if anyone has a superior claim over the child while it is still in such a dependent state, then they are encroaching upon the rights of the parents, and of the child.

                  (See how easy it is when you speak clearly?)

                  • Unless you hold allodial title for your land, the government holds the title for it, and you pay rent to occupy their land.
                    What difference does it make if the state didn’t create your house if they hold the title on the land on whcih it sits?

                    • ‘Zactly, Vonu. Land, house, children….government, being nothing more than extortionist organized crime, lays claim by threat of violence and confiscation to that over which it has no legitimate claim.

                      How is this any different than a monarchy, in which the king owns all land and has authority over the affairs of every subject within his domain, and only allows his subjects to pursue the normal actions of life by license and by payment of royalties? It isn’t asny different, other than in name only, and in so far as that the commoners may have a negligible say over some minor issues, or are at least given the illusion that they do.

                    • Of\by\for the peeps of fractal gooberment augur…

                      The flick has the swamp fox sayin’ why trade one tyrant 3000 miles away for 3000 tyrants one mile away?

                      That applies equally to why stump for one, or two, tyrants a few feet away, under the same parents-as-owners roof.

                      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EGgaXXBkE8A&t=72s

                      “If your principles dictate independence, then war is the only way.”

                      But, per the Oedipus references – make the implied, & necessary, mental modifications yourself…or, the other option, is to keep hewing to ol’ Eddie in the original, as most do, have always done (albeit, mostly, metaphorically) — it’s a much, much closer to home war.

                  • You mean when I talk down to you?

                    Makes me think of sexual harassment. That’s what it is, more often, when the harassed finds the harasser unattractive.

                    Condescension’s a positive if the condescended to says it is. Aka schizoid doubled standard (& ed & brad & Sisyphus & ouroboros…).

                    Also makes me think of “school.” Writing for – down to – the teachers. I ain’t in “school” anymore, teach.

                    • In order to talk down, one must first elevate oneself above.

                      Methinks someone is confusing talk-down with go down; the latter I’m sure making all appendage-equipped bipeds grateful for lockable zippers, I’m sure.

                    • “I” may confuse but I’m not often confused.

                      9000’ elevation now, & the air is thin but still plenty thick enough, & clean…listen, see can ya’ hear the mountain, Mohammed.

                      All bipedal peeps got appendages, but the over-tight chastity belt about cranial bulbvault’s the one to find the lost key to.

                      Easier said than impossible done, that.

                • Hi Ozy,

                  Help me to understand… how is laying claim to the house I paid for tantamount to endorsing slavery? No one else “helped” me to pay for my house. Yet I am forced to “help” random strangers, who contributed nothing to its purchase nor its upkeep/improvement.

                  And in re minor children: The parents have rightful custody until their children achieve the age of majority (i.e, the age at which they are capable of caring for themselves and being treated as the independent adults they have become).

                  This custody is based on the fact that the children are the literal physical product of their parents – and the parents therefore have a natural right to custody of their children that is superior to any conflicting claim of people who did not produce the child. These people have no more right to interfere in the raising of other people’s children than people who have children have a right to force others to provide for their children.

                  • Eric…nunzio – who’s claims to be anti-allusion as hell – was trying to parallel park a backfiring rhetorical real estate allusion. It reminded me of a guy I knew in Chicago: parallel parking involved butting into the cars ahead & behind.

                    You were there, know what he wrote, the context, but here’s the copy paste:

                    “So, if I have a say as to what color you paint your house, and can enforce my will to the point of imposing penalties upon you or confiscating your house, who then “owns” your house?”

                    Just substitute “kids” for “house.” (And then maybe order a spinal tap. Doc House seemed to do that every episode.)

                    ………god created wo\man – owns ‘em; wo\man created kids – owns ‘em (one, or the other, more, depending on which poured concrete “meaning” system is in which gender’s clutches; the state created-defends-keeps safe civilized wo\man (hobbes, rousseau, any number of other swinging nutbags) – owns ‘em.

                    It’s all the same thing: render unto all the little (as in short wo\man complex’d napoleons) caesars that which is caesars (pizza!pizza!)

                    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TgGngBampYg

                    more render-benders, please…

                    And this “send me someone I can own” compulsion is the parent religion to all the litters of littler religions that come\go, come\go, come\go.

                    You’ve prolly read Mencken’s Graveyard of the Gods…that’s just a small sampling of the supernatural variation of the argument from authority that is also the entire secular side of the schizoid chain link scam.

                    Homesteading logic doesn’t – can’t – apply to people…unless you’re one of those alien parasites Sigourney’s life revolved around.

                    And yet “logicians” abound who insist — a la the oh so conventional & conservative mantra – otherwise.

                    & so the alien carnage wreaking ensues, continuously, sequel after sequel after sequel.

                    The ownership onus anus is the bag that houses the craniums that are being used as & like bowling balls…this ain’t thinking…this is regurgitation of a fundamental attribution error…& it is the fatal operating error of humanimal.

                    It’d be nice if it were just a matter of extirpating the head ‘em up move ‘em out Monsanto roundup seeds from the mental flowerbeds – like that’s even an easy proposition — but that really ain’t it.

                    What it’s more like is that bag of fresh flour you brought home, shelved, didn’t use in window of opportunity time, & when you finally did open the bag, the weevil beetles had homesteaded it right out from under you:: the weevilseeds was already there, all along.

                    You could pick & sift ‘em out after they party-trashed the bag – in effect prune leaves & branches — & decide to tell yourself & others that the specks of weevil poop must be black pepper that got mixed in by mistake – but there ain’t no way to get at the root…Thoreau weren’t too thorough in his analysis of humanimal.

                    “There are a thousand hacking at the branches of weevil to one who is striking at the root.”

                    The only root’ish possibility is to bake your own cakes in time, keep your oven mitts off others cakes – & recognize that what mom-to-be’s got in the oven *ain’t* a cake — & neverever say let them eat cake or let us eat your cake.

                    Good luck puttin’ all that together – it ain’t ever happened yet & it ain’t ever gonna’.

                    All roman veins lead to the roman heart so this is the same in different words: local cause & effect is much closer to symptoms than causes\effects.

                    “Solving” symptoms is make work, a treadmill to nowhere.

                    Doctrinairism, mantras, “logic” (like Block’s “evictionism,” to touch the current aspect of the larger topic – but also physicists & “quantum weirdness,” and-and-and…the same fundamental attribution error over & over & over again) that bends & breaks reality to “make it fit” the treasured maps that are not the territory.

                    “Medicine & healthcare,” &-&-& – all about symptoms.

                    Last time I was in to see the current doc, she said I was getting close to her wanting to prescribe statins. I told her I’d rather have a massive heart attack & die that take statins. “Patient refused statins” went into the chart (that I could see – who knows what else where else went in…docs got their thin line, same as cops, etcetcetc, to obstruct any arguments against their arguments from authority).

                    Doc Trinaire be everywhere.

                    Rote regurgitation by regurgitators standing on the shoulders of giant regurgitators.

                    The humantra: eat it, “digest it,” stick your fingers down your throat, show & tell & disregard the smell.

                    It’s really just a vomit geyser disguised as wiser…so defer, children, until youse all growed up to the top o’ the geyser & it’s your turn to impose deference.

                    If you believe you own your kids, or that parents own kids, or should own kids, then you are the mini-me statist at the foot of the metasta-statism.

                    You are the foundation of the edifice.

                    You are your own Trojan horse.

                    You are Ed Norton\Brad Pitt beatin’ your own ass & fight club’s is your surreality.

                    You are Sisyphus & you are the boulder, too.

                    You have assumed ouroboros position on Kobe’s copter & are swallowing your own ass.

                    Any questions? ☻

                    • Ozy,

                      You may have missed my post in which I explained my position, which is that parents have a natural/inherent custodial right to their children – until they become adults. This is not ownership in the chattel sense; it is simply a form of benevolent stewardship. The larger point being the state – the other people who are the state – have no inherent custodial rights to other people’s children – or to anyone else.

                    • Didn’t miss it, Eric.

                      This started with an overt statement of ownership, by Nunzio. Then was backpedaled to the defensible “have a say.” And when I pointed out that differs from ownership, out came the real estate & who controls it as a metaphor for kids vis a vis governmental parents.

                      The larger point, the more interesting point, is that the parental ownership perspective is what builds all the larger structures that get assailed here.

                      All…of…them.

                      (& also the ones that preferentially don’t get assailed, at least not by those fond of them – like Nunzio & his religion – even tho they are all chips off the same block of ship-sinking iceberg.)

                      Also hidden in plain sight & disregarded is just how common the Bill Cosby – rapist – idea of “I brought you into this world & I can take you out” is…from the nuked nuclear family Shaw wrote of to the nuke button wielding presidential daddy of the state.

                      Biology (nature) is only half of it (or whatever the varying fraction from individual to individual).

                      Nurture is the rest of the coin.

                      So far the cycle of abuse – that’s what treating a child like property is – has been a perpetual motion machine.

                      And the way to bet is that it will continue to roll over ‘em, be internalized, & rolled up again, into those larger structures.

                      Your fight is with human nature, in both its aspects. And that means you are forever punching way above your weight.

                      As mental exercise, I like it.

                      In terms of any kind of literal fight, it’s Pee Wee Herman committing suicide by prime Mike Tyson.

                    • Hi Ozzy,

                      I think you make the mistake of generalization; that the parent-child relationship is tyrannical as such. Some parents are authoritarian, certainly. But is parental authority exercised benevolently necessarily tyrannical? I do not see it as such. Parental authority differs from all other forms of authority in that the child, though not chattel, isn’t capable of exercising his self-ownership from birth (obviously) through approximately the early-mid-late teens (maturation varies, individually). During this period, the parent provides for the child materially as well as emotionally and psychologically – ideally, facilitating the child’s development from helpless infant to a young adult capable of not needing the parents’ help. The parents, during this period of childhood, exercise authority over the child. Is this necessarily pernicious? Submission training? Only if the parents’ exercise of authority is arbitrary and meant to dominate rather than develop the child’s capacity to reason, to understand cause and effect, accountability – and so on – all the things, in other words, that mark an adult.

                      I agree with you that sentiments such as “I brought you into the world and I can take you out of it” are despicable. But the fact the some parents are despotic doesn’t make parenthood necessarily despotic.

                    • Hi Ozy,

                      What word(s) do you believe best describes the relationship between a dependent child and his parent(s)?

                      Kind Regards,
                      Jeremy

                    • Jeremy… Parent-child describes the relationship just fine.

                      Synonyms? How about just eliminating all having to do with ownership, or artificial hierarchical caste system stigmata – mark of the boast & ladle of the baste & cradle of falling babies – help! I’ve fallen & I can’t get up! — & keep the rest?

                      I’m not being glib. But I am having a chuckle. And some coffee. Decaf.

                      And am pointing, again, to the weakness of words labeling, & the predilection of word wielders toward substitution of symbologies, word definition logic•ontortions – often\usually shined to a high gloss – for actualities.

                      (Like I read you did, arguing or postulating, that voting, subject to or contingent upon what the voter believes about voting, is rational…that was you, wasn’t it?)

                      Not to mention the susceptible wielded-by-words falling, or leaping – – ooh, ah, let me give you my whole wo\man•hattan for that! — into that trap-slash-codependent word-feathered “love nest.”

                      Lawyers & legalese come to mind, but there’s all kinds of those brigands by other synonym names & labels.

                      Ah, what the hell. I’ll do one.

                      “Wean.”

                      From we to an.

                      And not in the “original sense” (as I will originate it) – before 950; Middle English; Old English ān one in a weakened sense — which to whatever extent true that one was the loneliest-weakest number in the Paleolithic, is rubbish now, the rubbish that begets more rubbish…wax on, wax off Daniel-san – rubbish those fender-mirrors.

                    • Eric…Yes.

                      Father & mother to fatherland\motherland, or “founding fathers,” or “our father, who art in heaven” does generalize, is the general trend & trajectory – & always has been.

                      Even if that first experience in those formative years wasn’t tyrannical, benevolent ownership is still ownership & not benevolent at all.

                      But Skinner & the boys didn’t invent conditioning, or the compulsion to do it & be done by it, they just named it. Milgram didn’t invent obedience to authority, or those same both ways compulsions, he just named it. etc.

                      Exceptions to the rule of parental norms exist, & they prove the rule via all the contrast they offer…& you describe exceptions, at least to a degree (not to the nth one I’d take it to as being minimum acceptable…in a galaxy far•far away, on planet utopia maybe) as if those were common & the norm – but they’re not. Even a cursory glance around fills the view with the generalized non-exception. You call them clovers.

                      Is clover an invasive species? Yes. Four-leaf & two-legged both. Invasive by nature – just badhard Irish luck — which goes far towards begetting nurture, that further degrade-invades nature. ∞

                      But four-leaf displaces other species, while humanimal displaces itself first, & other species as an after”thought” side effect.

                      Exceptions to the rule of “preferring” to be ruled (like heroin addicts “preferring,” well, heroin) got something else goin’ on in the woodpile…lumps of anthracite, or napalm, maybe.

                      What do you think about “libertarian paternalism”?

                      Self-ownership is a *concept*, & an idealization, & far•far from fait accompli at any age & in most lives – irrespective of what this or that legal statute, or “rite of passage” “indicates.”

                      That’s a bald tire, cords & belts showing, fact…& it is the fact that motivates certain personality types to hanker to be cast into the role of meta-parent at the controls of state cudgels to “nudge” all those suffering from “deplorable” self-ownership retardation – except not really, just ostensibly, cuz then what would those personality types have to do all day? How would they get paid, or rich even, to get their psyche\emotional kicks?

                      Hamilton wasn’t wrong to characterize “the people” as beastly, & firm hand fond, he was just wrong to imply he & his parental village weren’t beastly, as well. That’s the beast with two backs, right there. And boy do they pump out the progeny.

                      The retards save their umbilical cords & want those meta-parents…to supplant mommydaddy of youth.

                      And none of that largest of the large symbiotic parasitehost\hostparasite, or “codependent,” cohort wants what you are offering.

                      What you offer scares & dreads the bejesus out of ‘em…when they’re not laughing, or sneering, at you from the safe-space of their huge (pin)headcount.

                      Catholic missionaries went in backed by conquistadores; else they mostly went into cookpots & the ground, usually after an extended & leisurely torture.

                      (Black Robe. Good flick. Tribes. Completely interchangeable whether in vestments or animal skins. Same-same-same.)

                      Both sets of contending parents & meta-parents, catholic & heathen, said “do it.” So the children did. And do.

                      (The nike guy, years later, saw that history was one long series of foot-up-ass, had his eureka epiphany, & “just do it” with the stylized foot-up-ass swoosh was born.)

                      (Forest Gump started crisscrossing the country, with would-be forestry agents of changelessness chasing him.)

                      (How wide & deep does retarded go? No engineer’s ever bridged that chasm, no spelunker’s ever found that bottom.)

                    • Ozy,

                      “Parent-child describes the relationship just fine”.

                      Parent – child, without making assumptions or providing further explanation, says nothing about the relationship between the parent and child beyond the fact that there is a parent and child.

                      “…artificial hierarchical caste system stigmata…”

                      What makes you think that hierarchies are unnatural? Some are, some are not.

                      “And am pointing, again, to the weakness of words labeling, & the predilection of word wielders toward substitution of symbologies, word definition logic•ontortions – often\usually shined to a high gloss – for actualities”.

                      “Like I read you did, arguing or postulating, that voting, subject to or contingent upon what the voter believes about voting, is rational…that was you, wasn’t it?”

                      I can only guess at your meaning, perhaps that words are meant to confuse and hide the truth? My words did not do that. Any act directed toward an end is rational in the economic sense, even if the actor is deluded or wrong. Stating this is not an endorsement of voting, nor that it is rational in the broader sense. There was nothing logically contorted about what I wrote.

                      Jeremy

                    • Jeremy… That P-C needs to be, is requested to be, explained at all, & that no such explanation is going to polish your fender, let alone those of the jalopy at large…is the point.

                      But still, I gave you a serviceable word.

                      And\but you’ve picked & chosed otherwise. With concision, as always (as far as what I’ve read of you).

                      And for many, too many, that clipping of the language coupon will pay-satiate all interest…despite it don’t beat inflation.

                      Buy bond•age, saith the parental gooberment. & it has been sayin’ that from the get-go, screwin – clippin’ — the clippers since then too.

                      I said artificial. You said unnatural. What makes you think artificial is unnatural?

                      Artifice does indeed make humanimal word-world go round.

                      Not, of course, that I am indicting symbols themselves. Guns don’t kill people. Symbol wielders do.

                      Yeah. Words are meant to.

                      Word systems, specialization (that insect forte) – “in the economic sense” — even more so.

                      Goes double, or more, for the logic of “but I believed it, in it, so it was rational.”

                      ((Blame it on the twinkies – not me. Oh. OK. Not guilty by reason of believin’ in the twinky that wielded.))

                      But, & I’m pretty sure I’ve written this before, so it’s just in case, the slip-slidin’ away slope of the symbol weave practice to deceive – & where “but I believed it” insinuates its puncturing shiv over & over again, from eavesdropping thru the womb forward – the first steps at the top of that slope are all undetected inside jobs, rather than directed outward so as to win friends & influence people – that comes later.

                      The broader sense you mention is key. But alas in manimal’s codependent love affair with artificial hierarchy climbin’ up Babel Tower, it becomes something like a sixth sense that most don’t have.

                      And so voting, for one example, is parental right – nay obligation! – to civically, & “civilly,” own the other children – but only symbolically…unless & except for the symbol inebriated who agree to assume the receptacle position — of the village that came up fewer in the headcount.

                      Which begs question, which got shrunk first, the headhunter’s head, or the head the headhunter shrunk?

                      But, bonus point rhetorical question, what difference does it make? These people are all the kids on Lord of the Flies island. Despite pitches & heroin-style “preference” to believe the place they’ve made is a benevolent Gilligan’s Island.

                    • tl;dr; version for Ozy:

                      One has dominion over what they create and rightfully possess.

                      The more so (Not to be confused with Moroso- although they make a good ceramic engine sealer…) when what you have created and possess is supplied with the necessary upkeep by you.

                      Be it a car or a parrot or a sprog- someone created it and sustains it- and it’s possession (if not self-sustaining) is either respected by other decent men, or challenged by the unjust and violent.

                      Conversely, who then would have the “right” to occupy a womb?

                    • Chris Columbus took a load of slaves back to his king & Queen, too.

                      If it were just blind eye-talians what done it, maybe Kraft parmesan in a cardboard tube wouldna’ taken over the world.

                      I had Moroso valve covers on an engine. They glittered gold, but wasn’t. Same as those tin soldiers what kilt the mountain people.

                    • Ozy,

                      “But still, I gave you a serviceable word.”

                      What is it? I can’t find it in your previous post. If you mean “parent – child”, it is not serviceable for the reason I described. I didn’t “picked and chosed” otherwise. You correctly object to the word ownership but also seem unhappy with stewardship or anything else that may shed light on a proper parent – child relationship. I imagine that you do have thoughts on this because you clearly believe that ownership is improper.

                      “That P-C needs to be, is requested to be, explained at all, & that no such explanation is going to polish your fender, let alone those of the jalopy at large…is the point”.

                      So, the point is that no explanations are needed? Or, are you just making the assumption that I wouldn’t accept any, it’s difficult to tell.

                      “I said artificial. You said unnatural. What makes you think artificial is unnatural?

                      Artifice does indeed make humanimal word-world go round”.

                      Ah, so now you’ll invoke a specific meaning of a word and ignore that artificial is also commonly used as a synonym for unnatural.

                      “Goes double, or more, for the logic of “but I believed it, in it, so it was rational.”

                      When did I say that? You wish to use artificial in a specific sense and yet claim that my use of rational in the economic sense is the same as saying “but I believed it, in it, so it was rational.” What nonsense, I can’t believe that you don’t recognize the distinction. Perhaps you don’t. Maybe this will help.

                      James Holmes decision to murder a lot of people was irrational, the steps he took to achieve this end were rational.

                      Jeremy

                    • Old Chris Columbo made slaves out of them poor Injums- as enough that he stole their land….

                      Makes ya wonder why liberty and respect for the simple boundaries of others are respected by so very few…..

                    • Jeremy… Wean. The word was wean.

                      It’s in there & so I ween ya’ picked & chosed.

                      I also ween that the word wean’s more than adequate.

                      But true – & part of the point about the narrow benefits of construction in\with word materials (the benefit is mental exercise, nothing more) – even an adequate word still requires additional calcs.

                      What’s the load that weights the word wean?

                      That’d be words like orienting. & knowing the direction of the shot\s. Knowing prerogatives. Knowing the person’s already there, that the child is not an unmarked clay tabula rasa to be filled in or projected into, but to be discovered, by both the parent, & the child.

                      The comedy’s observational. The tragedy’s the rarity of situational awareness (& all the calc & weight that contains).

                      The word “ownership?” Yeah. I object to objectifyin’ the babes. Because it is dishonest. A lie.

                      But the bumper sticker on the jalopy, whatever it’s freighted significance, it’s current dictionary definitions (which may well be something completely different tomorrow), ain’t the point.

                      So neither are the synonym thickets that br’er rabbit leads fox to toss him into. (If that seems ironic, coming from me, seems is the key word.)

                      Ah, no. What was invoked was the question why paraphrase, instead of quote, what I wrote?

                      And then, I used it, your paraphrase. Material is material. Every move another makes can be borrowed, incorporated, returned…waste not, want not.

                      Artifice isn’t unnatural, but ersatz & fake…well, who needs it?

                      A lot of people, still livin’ la vida Pleistocene, obviously still need it, want it, must have it. Hard wired habits from the bygone good old days are beyond hard to break.

                      When you were defending voting, seemingly apparently on behalf of Eric’s lesser evil rationale – & his voting for OM — you wrote something that made belief the fulcrum of rational\ity, the rationality of voting in that particular instance.

                      You also said something about belief alchemically converting immoral to amoral.

                      I am going by memory (which is different from paraphrasing) & if that’s a botch, easy enough to check the playback. I’ll leave that to you.

                      But to generalize whilst leaving a gap for any rule proving exceptions as may eject from the tumult, here’s a bumper sticker: any special, dispensational, “sense,” “economic” or otherwise, is bullshit.

                      The bullshit of whatever the particular cobbled-together system of vesting is.

                      (Since free anything – markets, etc – is an unknown ideal that lives nowhere but within a few imaginations & intellects. Fixes – & their rationalizations & rationalizers – be in everywhere. & created “realities” are just games, even if backed by cadres of hut-hut’rs.)

                      Religional…which may be ends justifies means pragmatism…which may scratch ADD & autistic-short time preference itches (without regard to trespasses – which may be, & often are, “dispensated” via headcount utilitarianism, which is sometimes called voting – or without any regard for the net-net of the “transaction”)…which may alleviate existential anxieties…on & on the rationales…none of which is rational.

                      Because none of it is honest.

                      But edifices of lived in lies can at least – must!must! – look good to superficial observers. Appearances are everything to too many.

                      James Holmes (whoever that is, or was – I’ll search engine later) & Planned Parenthood’s & preggars women’s decision to murder a lot of people is (I lean on your description of Holmes, for now) dishonest.

                      Whatever steps you want to parse beyond that are irrelevant.

                      But those irrelevant parsings are relevant to cobbled together systems of vesting (& “employ” a lot of people who give even more people mantras & rules of thumb to shortcut living)…the games people play would be very hard to get metastasized without all those facilitating, & dispensating, Babel Tower camo-pattern emperors robes word combos.

                      Parents own their kids (or anyone else, including each other)? Dishonest AF.

                      Symmetry seems to demand that those same sorts of people F like crazy & litter like rabbits.

                      But symmetry, even when it’s not screwy, begets asymmetry. Destructive creation begets creative destruction.

                      It is just a ride.

                      Needing it to be more than it is is needing to be taken for a ride.

                      And one way or another, one extent to another, that neediness is ride, Sally Ride.

                      A good tune & the day the music died.

                      It was a cold stiffened ouroboros ring, & in the form\guise of pancreatic cancer, too, that did it, it’s said.

                      Bye bye, miss American pie.

                    • Yeah, Nunzio, it did make me wonder. So I figured it out.

                      “Dominion” is one of those biblical baubles, bright & shiny & irresistible to those credulous ones who can’t resist emulating, flattering – with his permission & commanding, of course – the lord by lording it over others.

                      All that is just more rationalized & justified undue credit taken.

                      It is psychological\emotional compensation.

                      It is a plaster cast never removed covering up atrophy that never strengthens.

                      Egg\s belong to, but are not controlled or deployed, or even created by, the woman.

                      Ditto semen for the man. At least until he leaves it with the woman.

                      Most of both, eggs & semen, never get together, whether the couple wants conception, or not.

                      Control (dominion) is an illusion – but, what a compensatory rush, eh?

                      When conception does occur, it is no longer egg, or semen.

                      It isn’t mother, or father.

                      It is something new.

                      A new person.

                      This is human reproductive biology, & all the blue faces can’t & don’t change that.

                      Refusal to admit doesn’t change any of it.

                      You are a biblican, Nunzio. That is mutually exclusive of even mere libertarianism.

                      But if it makes you feel less alone, & therefore better, there’s lots of in name only mere libertarians.

                      As regards this particular facet – human reproductive biology, children – Walter Block is a well known claimer who ain’t (along with being a tenured professor at a “private jesuit” university…which isn’t any different than, say, growing subsidized corn for the subsidized ethanol “market”).

                      Or, you may notice that lrc.com tries to push thru catholicism-libertarianism. Talk about chimerical constipation that can never move.

                      Ever read any of Bionic Mosquito’s stuff? He doesn’t claim to be, just the opposite, but he gets plenty of airtime from lrc.

                      As does the catholic whose beat is, largely, veterans, from whom he rips the mask from behind his own mask.

                      Etc.

                      These sorts of people are all over the place.

                      Here’s the distill. If you plant the flag you’ve been ordered to plant, this dominion nonsense, then you have no justification for complaining when others spout their nonsensical rationalizations & permissions & orders justifying their imposition – trespass – of dominion over you.

                      Hypocrisy’s a thing.

                      Kirk Douglas died yesterday. Maybe one of his is auld lang syne enough for you. There Was A Crooked Man. It’s one of my faves. And if you can bring enough to it, it could entertain & edify simultaneously.

                    • Ozy,

                      “When you were defending voting, seemingly apparently on behalf of Eric’s lesser evil rationale – & his voting for OM — you wrote something that made belief the fulcrum of rational\ity, the rationality of voting in that particular instance”.

                      I have never defended voting, nor do I vote. I don’t agree with Eric’s rationale for voting, but I don’t care that he votes. It was stated repeatedly, by some here, that voting is proof pf either delusion or immorality, that is what I was responding to. Eric is clearly not deluded, nor is he immoral.

                      I have never written anything that makes belief the fulcrum of rationality, if you believe I did, you misunderstood what I wrote. I have tried to explain this but you seem unwilling to distinguish between rational in the economic sense, directed toward an end, and rational in the broader sense, sane, reasonable, consistent with reality, etc… Your stubborn claim that when I explained why, to the voter, voting is rational, I was claiming voting is rational, or that belief is the fulcrum of rationality is simply false.

                      James Holmes was the Aurora movie theater shooter. After deciding that he was going to kill a lot of people he made a plan, a very rational one. He chose a movie theater that prohibited guns (he avoided two that were closer to his house that allowed guns). He parked his car in a rarely used side parking lot near the exit door of the theater. He left his tactical style clothing and weapons in his car. He entered the theater, dressed normally, and bought a ticket. About 20 minutes after the movie began, he left through the side exit, keeping the door slightly ajar, went to his car, changed into his assault gear, retrieved his weapons, reentered the movie theater and then shot at hundreds of people, killing 24. All of the preparatory steps he took were rational, I suppose I need to qualify here, in the economic sense. Recognizing this fact does not mean that his decision to kill people was rational.

                      “Ah, no. What was invoked was the question why paraphrase, instead of quote, what I wrote”?

                      Because you were clearly using artificial pejoratively. I wished to highlight that hierarchy, while artificial (anything made, thought, written etc… By men is artificial), is not necessarily bad. I thought using unnatural as a narrower synonym for artificial was a good way to get this across.

                      “Wean. The word was wean. It’s in there & so I ween ya’ picked & chosed. I also ween that the word wean’s more than adequate”.

                      I like wean, but I don’t find it adequate. I find your writing, and the thread of your thought, very difficult to follow and didn’t realize that you were finally answering my question. You preceded this with a bunch of stuff about lawyers, legalese, synonyms, etc…, and then, after producing the word, some talk of 950 Middle English, loneliest number, paleolithic rubbish, etc… I honestly had no idea what you were talking about.

                      Jeremy

            • PS: Ozy,

              BTW: I didn’t continue the “child ownership” debate with you, because I simply don’t have the time nor desire to decipher your nonsense. If you want to have a discourse about something, state your ideas in concrete terms….

        • Eric…b\ramble patch is where b’rer rabbit lives.

          But so does everyone & thing else. Whether that’s recognized, or not.

          Each to his, her, milieu – or understanding of it. Ain’t that the libertarian’ish way?

            • Eric, call it too much of a good thing if you want, but the world being awash in “directly” flips it to indirection (& mostly not accidentally, either…it’s a blind spot that convoys of 18-wheelers blast thru every day, in all directions & their opposites).

              Maybe that’s counterintuitive. But so is countersteering a two-wheeler – until you’ve been persuaded by physics to do it.

              Redirecting to “indirect” is, then, the most direct path…to an actual, real, somewhere. Or, how some 60’s station poetry I heard whilst out & about the other day put it:

              And so it was that later
              as the miller told his tale
              that her face, at first just ghostly,
              turned a whiter shade of pale
              She said, ‘There is no reason
              and the truth is plain to see.’
              But I wandered through my playing cards
              and would not let her be
              one of sixteen vestal virgins
              who were leaving for the coast
              and although my eyes were open
              they might have just as well’ve been closed
              She said, ‘I’m home on shore leave,’
              though in truth we were at sea
              so I took her by the looking glass
              and forced her to agree
              saying, ‘You must be the mermaid
              who took Neptune for a ride.’
              But she smiled at me so sadly
              that my anger straightway died
              If music be the food of love
              then laughter is its queen
              and likewise if behind is in front
              then dirt in truth is clean
              My mouth by then like cardboard
              seemed to slip straight through my head
              So we crash-dived straightway quickly
              and attacked the ocean bed

              Nothing so pedestalized & Ram Dass, but “be the change” (it’s never overt like that…the free will shibboleth…cue Sammy Davis: I Gotta’ Be Me) – I understand everything I write.

              If dropping a pebble post into the pool ripples into another understander, or if it just empties a bottle of Ripple down Fred Sanford’s throat, it’s all good. It is just a ride, like the observational comedian said it is.

              Human world could do with more poetry, or poetical sensibility, & less – a lot less – Linus blankey linearizing (which doesn’t exist in nature per se, anyway, even as it oozes from human nature – part of the catch-22 that all but guarantees nature’s gonna’ win, per Carlin).

              • Been a while since I heard Procul Harum

                “We skipped the light fandango
                Turned cartwheels ‘cross the floor
                I was feeling kinda seasick
                But the crowd called out for more
                The room was humming harder
                As the ceiling flew away
                When we called out for another drink
                The waiter brought a tray”

                The tail-end bit you have there starting at “She said, ‘I’m home on shore leave,” is the bit I don’t recall. But it sounds fun just the same.

                • I don’t recall that last part either!

                  Yeah, Brandy used to watch his eyes
                  When he told his sailor’s story
                  She could feel the ocean fall and rise
                  She saw its raging glory
                  But he had always told the truth
                  Lord, he was an honest man
                  And Brandy does her best to understand
                  And she’s buying a stairway to heaven.

                  (WTH, when in Rome… 😉 )

                  • Nunz, the long version is the original when it first appeared across the pond. I don’t know why there became a shorter version and I’ve heard others do it with the long and short versions.

                    Anyhow, I love the song and especially prefer the longer version. I can get right lying in bed in the dark listening to it. It eases me.

                    • I never knew that, 8!

                      Maybe they cut it down so it’d fit on one side of a 45? (Iron Butterfly have passed on that option!)

                      Ah no….now all this stuff is starting up in my mind…

                      “But Frank Zappa And The Mothers, were at the best place around,
                      But some stupid with a flare gun,
                      Burned the place to the ground…
                      Ahndt ahndt ahndt…. ( 😉 )

                      Ah well…whatdayyah expect- it’s 70* and I’m stuck in the house doing some ‘puter work 🙁 (I work like 2 hours* a week, and I still complain!)

                      [*=8 hours, if you include the time I spend here]

                    • Hiya Nunz!

                      It’s 71 here – and I’m also still stuck inside, working… but I’m hoping to cut out soon and read about Augustus, outside by the pond with Fuzz the cat!

                    • Billy Joel explained the why in The Entertainer: “It took me years to write it / It was the best year of my life / It was a beautiful song, / but it ran too long / If you’re gonna have a hit, you gotta make it fit / So they cut it down to 3:05.”
                      It was a combination of payola and increasing commercial slots that brought short versions to American AM radio, neither one was dominant across the pond at the time.
                      After the superior fidelity of FM started taking listeners from AM, it kept taking them with the longer, and usually original, album versions.

                    • Ah, Eric! You got as pond? You lucky &^$^^%^&&!! 🙂

                      A book, a pond, a nice day, cats and dogs….it just doesn’t get any better than that in this life!

                      My ambitions for today were very humble: I just wanted to cut some overhanging branches around the place that get in the way when I mow and bushhog- been meaning to do it since……2018 But, I’ll take the work when I can get it….I’d rather add to savings, than have to dip into them…and considering that I have to go to the dentist again tomorry……$$$

                      ‘Least I finally chopped up the tree that had fallen across the li’l meadow in my woods!

                    • Hi Nunz,

                      Yup! I dug it out myself… not huge; it’s an ornamental koi pond, with a pair of Japanese Maples. Send me an email; I’ll send y a pic!

                    • I stacked & tarped firewood, in the falling snow, yesterday.

                      It’s not a complete defense, but Winterfell’s an element (the “harsher” – I love winter — the better) that contributes to keeping out the riffraff.

                    • re the Billy Joel….

                      Better business bureau billionaire boys clubbing about the head & shoulders. I see Geffen the gargoyle, when I think about it.

                      But I also see FSA’ers demanding the short & staccato cliff notes version right here (as well as most of elsewhere, too).

                      A syllable saved is a syllable unlearned & unearned…if you love somethin’, set it free, ya’ anal retentive sumbitch…ha.

                    • What I’ve heard from Zappa, unlikely he believed he owned Moon Unit, Dweezil, Ahmet & Diva.

                      There vid out there of him talking about what the Doc Trinaires did to him.

                    • Zappa was an ass. (Who’d want to own kids named Moon Unit and Dweezil?!)

                      If he’s so smart…how comne he’s dead? Nyah!

                      But wait, if parents don’t own their children, who does? Can you just release them into the wild once sprung from the cavern? Do those who had no say in their creation and who contributed no DNA have a superior claim over them?

                      Now old Frank might not have thought he owned his kids…but I’ll bet he acted like he did. I mean, I’ll bet he didn’t just leave ’em on the floor, wiggling around somewhere, and I’ll bet he let ’em stay in his house; and if some guy tried to walk off with little Moon Unit, I’ll bet he said “Wait! You can’t have that!”.

                      Then again, with musicians, ya never know…..

                    • “…with musicians, ya never know…”

                      Well, at least you have more bandwidth as regards musicians than you do other subjects\topics even if it is just to play heads I win & tails you lose…& so to pin the tail on your own ass.

                      But you might be right. Zap was no personal acquaintance.

                      Still, when you name your boy Sue, you’re pretty much trying to see to it that the parental world of humanimal isn’t going to own him. If you’re not just an ass.

                      The times I went into battle on behalf of others, it was never from the motive he ain’t heavy, he’s my brother – & I own him.

                      It, the motive, was you done f****** with the wrong people, & now I own you.

                      But that’s ever only because the first thing trespass does is convert the person\s doing the trespass into mere things, to be disposed of in any manner I choose.

                      Look up his last interview. He’s dead because the parental units that own “healthcare,” & thus all the “patients,” killed him.

                      Iatrogenic “oops,” on the one hand, that “happens” – is committed — many times per day.

                      & on the other hand the mommydaddy cartel has no incentive to actually change a thing about their cash machine, no incentive to cure the things that keep the registers ringing.

                • Procul Harum….The poets have always been there.

                  Surrounding dunno’its, too (that’s not a reference to the odd bit of lyrics…).

              • Well…you do have yer moments….

                I think Acme was bought-out by the SJW company, and instead of booby-trappin’ coyotes, they send straight white males over the cliff…so I stay away from their junk!

                There goes (re)Greta! Meep-meep!

        • eric, I suppose I ramble on too long at times but my verbosity is easier to read I’ll admit. I prefer to make a point with the minimum of words….most of the time. My “stories” can get too long and I often delete everything but the main point.

          The main problem is his comments are full of symbols. I notice that happening sometimes with others and don’t understand why the symbols are inserted(I guess by WP) when the word needed is “and” and such.

          No matter who has that in their comment it makes it more difficult to read. I know for some, like yourself, it’s not something you put in but some weird thing that WP has done.

          • 8 deletes everything symbolic but the main point, Eight.

            & and and (the name of the band in The Commitments – excellent flick), same thing.

            Ampersands are legit (as legit as anything else)…& it’s all symbols anyway, no matter how it’s cut, haiku’s & fortune cookie slips to War & Peace.

            If it’s a skinny day, be skinny. But gastric bypass surgery? Nah

          • 8, it might be what yer reading on- i.e. your browser or device. Ironically, I don’t see any symbols in Ozy’s posts (I wish I did; they’d probably make more sense than his words! :D)- so I don’t think it’s a WP thing.

            And hey…it’s not the length of the posts…. I love your stories! Like I’ve been saying, you need to write a book! Your posts say something; they’re entertaining; and no matter how long, ya never notice the length, only in so much as they always seem too short!

            While Ozy may not be a bad guy….the constant allusions and word-play, while entertaining if you have the time and are reading in a literary sense, tend to obscure any concrete meaning, and depersonalize the writing- the very opposite of what you do.

            • Eyes glazing dissociation feels like depersonalization cuz it is. Aka tuning out.

              But it ain’t my hands on your tuner buttons.

              It’s the reader who personalizes, or depersonalizes – not the writer (& despite your inability to see the writing on the wall, let alone read it, what I write is personal (what else could it be?) & concrete (albeit fluidly*, as art imitating reality needs must be) to me.

              So & but keep looking for the “concrete meaning” station you’d have the dj (any dj, my god I gotta’ get a dj!) impose on this fluid reality. That’s the conservative compulsion, bud, & it’s got a taproot that goes all the way to China.

              But literary sense? That’s like twinky defense. The literary grok’ing (sensing) & TNSTAAFL writer said “specialization is for insects.” I agree. It’s impossible to, honestly, disagree.

              Still invoking time? Despite evincing you got lots of it. Of Time & The River. Wolfe, & his arcs, might eat you up, if you don’t have, or put on, the special hat you say is necessary to non-stacatto writing reading.

              Interesting, too, that you got something against cunning linguists – what’s that really about? Did one, or the Algonquin roundtable, bully you in childhood, steal your lunch money, or something? That would be funny, add to the funny, since it’s usually the other way ‘round.

              *One thing that ain’t fluid, all appearances contrary: I ain’t property. And never – from conception on — was.

      • Yer projectin’, Fred.

        That the handle – (which is weird…why dontcha’ search engine it, or look for Walter White readin’ the poem on youtube? It’s a freakin’ famous poem, fella…& is particularly about ‘murica @ this point in the spin cycle…) — & the post confuse you doesn’t mean they’re confusing.

        That’s a misuse of solipsism, right there, & solipsism’s one of the most important tools in the box.

        There’s more things in heaven & earth & English, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.

        And I’ve seen English used so well the other guy never got a turn to shoot, or if he did, had nuthin’ to shoot at. Cue that Werewolves of London scene, in The Color of Money – great scene.

        Every bit of it’s English, in other words.

        ((And…since you by your lonesome apparently ain’t enough, you just gotta’ invoke – inhale & hold! – the pufferfish “we”…which is enjoyable, my end – something I “rap” & riff regularly. As in “weebles wobble but they don’t fall down” – unless they unwisely sit on a wall, that was prolly erected, brick by Pink Floyd brick, by their “teachers.” It IS a pain, & regrettable – all that wasted time — to have to tear all that rickety structure down, rebuild from solid foundations, but that is how it is.))

        After giving a listen to Shelley’s version of the Oz poem – I’ll link it for ya’ — maybe reread some of Eric’s stuff on the FSA, & then decide should you keep demanding freebies in advance & from the get-go, or should you earn your own way & desert, go awol, move to Canada, or something.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T3dpghfRBHE

        Where’d I hear this…oh, yeah, The Big Short: truth is like poetry & most people f****** hate poetry.

        Had a guy who got most every word tell me once that as much as he appreciated it, my stuff was just poetry. “Just.”

        Meaning he was a “just the facts” Joe Friday at heart.

        Now that there, indeed, is a “just.”

        Just like that other Joe Friday exemplar, the one played by Chaz Palminteri, in The Usual Suspects (remember the scene I’m flashin’ on?)…

        …& just as marooned as Robinson Crusoe & Manimal Friday were.

        I’ll see your crack & meth homeless, & raise you an autistic homeless; she prolly wears overalls & looks like work, too: here’s a pretty funny psych today piece on poetry-haters.

        https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/sin-bravely/201701/truth-is-poetry-and-most-people-hate-poetry

          • I figured this was responsive my response to your request from yesterday, when it landed my inbox, so forward attach this there…but, applies here, too:

            Eric…you’re a wordsmith (& I’m more of a word•emolitionist), so I gotta’ think the point is made, & that no way you’re dark (& I’m pretty sure Jack Black’s quick, would have no trouble, either) – from any of the many angles that are all focusing the light into the same spot.

            Or, in other words, pick a spot, any spot, in my response – & there’s the point.

            Hell•o, I even summarized, down at the bottom, where summaries often sink to.

  7. What use would the “two heavy stamped-steel hinges with springs” be if a prop rod were required to hold up a ’76 Trans-Am’s hood?
    I remember that the hood on my first car stayed up without a prop rod of any kind, and it was a mid 60s vintage full size sports car.

      • And the springsd never wear out…unlike the lift strut thingies that hold up the hoods and hatches of many of the vehicles that are still around today, that still have body parts heavy enough to require some sort of assistance……

        • When I worked for the country recently, they had a Chevy half ton crew cab 4WD and a similar Toyota. The Chevy did all the heavy lifting and the Toy was only used to check out roads and such.

          One day I had to boost a grader and had the Toy to do so. The hood wouldn’t stay up since the struts were kaput but that old Chevy just keeps on giving and does all the hard work and its hood operates as good as new.

            • Nunz, now I’m doing on the computer what my damned phone does to me on autocorrect. I sometimes feel like I”m in Mexico. In July I had to make my way through San Antonio. Not only was the traffic bad but the drivers were worse.

              The first time I went deep into Mexico I dreaded the drivers. But surpise, surprise, they drive fast as hell there and there are few bad drivers, maybe because the bad ones get culled by the road system….or lack thereof.

              But put a Mexican on the N side of the border and their driving goes to shit. I have never understood that although there doesn’t seem to be many female drivers in Mexico and the absolute worst drivers you find in Texas are Mexican femals. They couldn’t drive a nail up their puta with a shop hammer.

              • 8, I think I know why they drive like crap when they’re here: Because they’re used to actually driving– using their senses and wits to deal with whatever is before them in the real world in Meh-hee-co; here, our roads are now designed like cattle chutes, to herd the lowest common denominator through with no actual thought…just a mindless follying of rules. Being used to either system and then going to the other is not so easy- it requires a switch in mentality and technique. Not to mention the two different types of drivers coexisting.

      • I recall the first time I lifted a hood and had to use a prop rod, think it was a Honda. Cheap sumbitches I said out loud, too cheap to have a spring hinge.

    • I used the hood of my ’57 shivvy as a shield. Left arm got stone crab huge. Right, holding the prop rod, was merely ripped.

  8. I tried hanging on to a couple older vehicles, but was having trouble finding parts, so ended up getting new. My wife’s 2018 Focus was dented all over by acorns falling from the neighbor’s tree that hangs over our driveway. I never would have thought that would happen. Ridiculous. Used to have a 74 TA and 72 Firebird. I remember the hood weight :).

  9. The conflict between safety and MPG, like nearly all other incomprehensible government BS, is the result of the recent advent of the philosophy “Financialization” by our money monger elites. The consideration of crash worthiness is driven by insurance companies. The fragile nature of the exterior of current automobiles is to insure steep cash flow for minor incidents.
    All variables, transactions and conditions that can be altered to produce more cash flow are fair game for the Scheckel people. If all else fails, and with government guns, competition will be eliminated to protect cash flow.
    Still do not understand: Name one law, event or decision that any government makes that nets or saves us any money. Virginia proposes a two year vehicle inspection cycle, but includes legislation to raise the gas road tax…WTF ?
    We are being destroyed by rapacious oligarchs that only worship money, and now they want our guns…
    “Is live so sweet or peace so dear….?”

  10. I would be curious to know how some of the European cars of the 1960’s thourgh mid 1980’s would fare under current mandated crash testing.. Volvo, Mercedes, BMW…. Volvo 122, 140, 240 series, all of which weighed in between 2200 and 2600 pounds, cruised at 85 mph all day long and returned 50 or so mpg (manual gearbox), Mercedes 114, 115, 116, 123, 126 bodies, weighing 2500 to 3000 lb range, diesel versions cruised at 80 comfortably and returned 30 to25 mpg with automatic gearboxes, BMW 1600, 2002 Bavaria, early 5 series, all easily cruising at 75 (1600) to 85 mph returning high 30’s mpg.
    I’ve ended up inheriting a number of these body styles after being totalled, removing useful bits then cutting the rest up… those cars were all SOLID, tough to cut up, most had taken serious impacts, the passenger compartments holding nearly their original volume/shape, the crumple zone designs working beautifully. I’ve also taken these different bodies that had relatively minor prangs, taken straight bits from other cars and put them back together again with minimal work. Today’s cars, taking the same hits, would be crumpled newsprint, and not repairable for any amount of money.
    Friend had his 2004 Nissan Altima smacked in the left rear door.wheel by a clown 19 year old female, no license no insurance, as she ran a red light (Im convinced she had her nose in her phone). I read the estimate to put it back together. LR door toast, rocker and forward side of the wheelwell smashed in, metal into the tyre. I went with him yesterday to collect it from the yard. Value of the car, max, is $8,000. Two airbags (one above L rear door, other in left edge of driver’s seat. $2500 for those alone. The entire driver’s seat back must be replaced, 1500 for the part. WHAAAATTTT????!!??? Body work, not even listing the replacement LR door, came to 11K.
    I jacked the LR up, removed the LR road wheel, took a BIG hammer and beat back the metal into the wheel arch, smacked a bit to make the LR door close a bit better, it does latch and open, put the LR wheel back on, checked to see if it was bent, nothing noticeable, bolted it back on, and we DROVE the car 40 miles to home. It ran perfectly. I don;t see it being doable at any reasonable price to straighten out the LR doorsill, wheel arch, etc, to make a new door close properly.. the car is not repairable. So, we will part it out. Sad. Best news is, all five occupants sustained only minor injuries, the baby (one year old) came through with NO issues, Adults have sore necks, bruising, etc. but should recover fully. One head laceration, stapled, healed. Scar under thick hair, so no harm done there. I am convinced my Mercedes 300 D or 300 SD would have fared at least as well….. 20 or 30 years older just as crash resistant.

  11. It was a new world for us teens when, used to sitting on old cars’ hoods and shooting the breeze, we sat on our parents’ mid-70’s Mercury Comet and the hood caved in. We marveled at the time. My ’63 Olds could’ve handled a football team on its hood and trunk.

    • Maverick/comet sheet metal is pretty thick, including the hood. It’s all about the shape of the metal and the reinforcement. I forgot to mention this earlier the thinner metal is also for forming today’s styling shapes and body side panels. The less metal to move the better. The idea today is fewer panels. Older cars had more panels and they were shaped to resist deforming. Today’s are shaped to match the styling desires.

      It’s the old battle of styling vs. engineering and in mass produced cars engineering usually won way back when. Except for special cars and most of those are pretty fragile in these cosmetic concerns.

  12. And what does all that “crashworthiness” equal? Why more crashes, of course! The safer a person feels, the less they care about their own (or anyone else’s) safety, hence the somewhat ironic increase in accidents.

  13. There are two other reasons for this condition of new cars. The first is the federal reserve. Companies must always be seeking cost reductions simply to tread water. Monetary inflation is always there eating away at profit margin. Thus cost has to always be taken out of the product. Different processes like injection molding allow for that. Although in many cases the change is more costly for an automaker and they do that to comply with uncle most of the time.

    The second is to be environmentally friendly. For instance, with today’s regs chrome plating bumpers would be prohibitively expensive as anyone who looks into a rechroming original bumpers on an old car knows. Manufacturing processes themselves have to comply.

    • bumpers, I mean REAL ones, also come painted.. . black, grey,even a silver metallic. Can be repaired with a touch of bondo for minor prangs, then resprayed. FAR cheaper than the monstrous plastic wraps they put on cars now that can pick up a thousand bucks’ worth of damage from a renegade shopping cart.

      I;ve often wondered why copper plating of bumpers never caught on. A REAL chromium plating starts with copper, as it bonds to the steel VERY well, then the chromium bonds VERY WELL to the copper. Ye,s copper is rather dear (~$6300 per tonne last I looked) but a large truck bumper could be very heavily plated and use maybe two ounces of pure copper.

      Today’s rechrome jobs don’t use the copper anymore.. they try and plate the chromium directly on to the steel. It does not stay long, though. Still the copper plate would be far cheaper than the new plastic things, costing $1500 and up before the respray to match the rest of the body.

      • I could never figure out back in 2000 when the pickups had to be pedestrian friendly, why that was. So the consumer responded by putting bull bars and complete front end cow catchers on them so they could “work” the pickup, the very thing they were, or at least, used to be made to do. Now you have an extra 4-500 lbs hung off the front and another 80 lbs over the standard for a good bumper. Horseshit.

  14. Left unsaid about heavier use of aluminum in vehicles: that metal is far more energy-intensive to extract from ore than is steel, and the special aluminum alloys used for structural parts are expensive. So much for being eco-friendly. Bauxite, the ore most suited for aluminum extraction, is not all that common or easy to get, either.

    There were reasons aluminum was considered a strategic metal and some countries restricted its use in consumer goods in favor of military and aviation applications. That’s okay; we’ll learn the hard way.

    • One comment to add:

      Aluminum is grossly overhyped. It is not the lightweight miracle wonder metal a lot of people seem to think it is. For example, in some environments it corrodes quicker than will steel/iron. It is also dimensionally unstable and, unlike iron/steel, it has no safety threshold for cracking from vibration and expansion. It has to be alloyed to be of maximum utility in many applications. I could go on, but you get the idea.

  15. Then they add 10-15pct ethanol in the gas which loses all the thin metal and ASS fuel savings to save the planet from carbon,,, the very thing their miserable lives are based upon. Sort of like they just cheered the closing of the last clean coal powered electric generating plant reducing capacity while simultaneously pushing electric vehicles. Makes sense only to idiots and government,,, do I repeat myself? Of course their goal is those safe, green, non polluting nukes like the one killing the Pacific.
    Saaaftey is not goal. Control is their only real concern which is why getting your guns is so important to them.

    Cheap? Everything manufactured today is cheap for planned obsolescence,,, using the original definition.

    • “Control is their only real concern which is why getting your guns is so important to them.”

      Exactly! They want to “de-fang” us while we’re still under the anesthesia.

  16. Sorry Eric but using 1973+ cars as good examples of cars able to take a hit doesn’t agree with me. The ’73 and later 911’s with their huge bumpers were downright ugly to me. I spent a lot of time/money changing the crash bumpers back to European spec on my Audi 80. Sure, they wouldn’t take an 8 km/h bump the rulers at the time dictated but I never ran into anything anyway. Besides, if I had, it would have been worth it not having to look at those hideous things.
    Which looks better – a 1972 or 1974 Camaro?

    • Hi Doug,

      I agree – the ’72-up cars with “federal” bumpers were eyesores. But they could absorb minor impacts without damage. The broader point, of course, is that government has no rightful business decreeing any of these things. The proper example is my free decision to wear armored leathers, boots and so on when I ride a motorcycle… or just shorts and a T-shirt. And to ride the bike at all – which no doubt Clovers would love to outlaw…. for ssssssssssssssssssafety!

      • Eric

        Honda has a Gold Wing with a airbag. I’m waiting for this to be imposed on all motorcycle makes. For safety of course. I can imagine the idiots mandating that on bicycles as I just read an article saying bicycle deaths are up and something needs to be done.

        • Hi Ken,

          I used to like the Goldwing; a buddy – GTC, regular here – has one I lust for. But it’s an older model without an air bag and without the other stuff that has turned the current Goldwing into a $30k absurdity.

        • bicycling deaths rise in parallel with the stupid factor also rising. Part of that is the radically increased use of bikes for commuting, particularly in cities choked with ridiculour traffic problems. Bikes can oftentimes actually be faster getting from A to B. But the motorists are more and more comatose, being coddled and soothed and distracted ( I can’t believe the oxymoronic demand NO ONE EVER use their “device” whilst driving, on the one hand, yet the cars come with these flat screen TeeVee control panels and one is hard pressed to change any controls on the car’s features without starring and figuring out how to turn the heater up or down using that stupid screen. How mnay bikes are mowed down as a driver is using that mandated screen to manage some feature of the car?

          Then again, on the other side the equation I see more and more moronic riders, wrong way on the street, night with NO lights or even reflective clothing, roaring through red lights and stop signs with no care for cross traffic…. riding on sidewalks where cars don’t expect them to be, crunching a few of them here and there. and generally being idiots on two wheels, a great match for their conterpart idiots on four wheels.

      • Yup. But “sub-frame\unibody” was a plot thins point in the direction of lighter-stronger-faster steroidal-bionic e. pluribus unum singularity-boringness.

  17. As with the seat belt debacle, what is important is that freedom is more important than safety. Despite the crying and whining of Nader, and Claybrook, and the rest of their ilk, car wrecks are not statistically dangerous and not statistically common. They weren’t 50 years ago. Fatal ones are even less so. Though the frequency and severity is now increasing because of intelligent decision making being supplanted by bureaucratic rules.

    FWIW though, when I was growing up people were complaining about thin metal and plastic parts in the 70’s and they were right then and it’s only worse now.

    Eric, my man, your TA’s hood hinges are NOT cast iron- they are stamped steel. You’re better than that!

  18. My F250 is a tank- but the aluminum hood is so flimsy that a plastic pipe from the electric “gate” in my ‘hood came down on it and did $1500 of damage. I about puked when I heard the estimate. How am I helped as a customer of an otherwise rugged truck with crap like this? Answer: Screw you, customer. It’s to save the planet. never mind the extra megawatts of electricity and gallons of fuel it takes to make the paint, primer, filler, sanding media, ship it, apply it, cure it, and my lost time without a truck while the tinfoil is “fixed”. This is total bullshit. Contrawise I recall some “sporting” done with my girlfriend on the hood of Dad’s Olds 88 back in the day- not one single knee mark or palm print 🙂

    • I had a similar incidence with my silverado at work. The gate arm came down and bonked it, tiny dent but I filed workers comp and got a brand new hood out of it. All the gate arms at work now have pool noodles on the bottom.

      • Geez, doing something as unruly as that would have to have you marry her, It might not have been so bad as compared to safety consumed womyn of today.

  19. Case in point. I had a 2008 Impreza, traded for a 2008 MX5, and my insurance went DOWN. I can only assume that the agility of the MX5, along with far better visibility, resulted in more accidents being avoided.

  20. “The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function.”

    F. Scott Fitzgerald

    If it were only true.

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