2021 Deadpool

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A second wave  – of cancelled car brands – is coming, chiefly because of who was selected to determine the future of the car industry in this country back in November. But also because of the Orange Fail’s failure to avert the weaponization of hypochondria, which led to the selection and also poured sugar in the gas tank of the American economy. It’s hard to buy expensive things like new cars when all you’ve got to pay for it is a $600 check from the Orange Fail.

But that’s small potatoes. The real fail will soon be upon us and it is just as artificially contrived and imposed as the weaponization of hypochondria.

The first to go will be the car brand that is the least compliant with the spirit – and soon, the letter – of the Electrified Future.

Dodge.

It sells no electric cars or even hybrid cars. All of its cars are muscle cars – defined by their physical size and the size of the engines that lie under their hoods. Before the selection, Dodge explicitly stated that it would focus on muscle, leaving other brands to focus on motors, i.e., electrification and hybridization – reasoning that there were still plenty of buyers who wanted to buy something muscular rather than electrified or hybridized. Which they did – notwithstanding that every vehicle Dodge sells hasn’t been updated in years.

Because they don’t need to be. Except in terms of their engines growing even stronger. Because that is precisely what people want.

The problem for Dodge is the president selected does not want that. Nor the rest of the federal apparat. And what Biden and the apparat want  takes precedence over what buyers want.

This has been true for decades, of course – but what is different now is framing of it. The old justifications about “reducing America’s dependence on foreign oil” and “curbing air pollution” lack the urgency – the hysteria and moral unction – needed to silence opposition.

The “climate crisis” provides both unction and hysteria.

Getting rid of muscle cars that are also gas hogs is a matter of emergency triage to prevent a global catastrophe, very much of a piece with the necessity of forcing everyone to wear a Holy Rag as the emergency-in-perpetuity palliative for “the virus” that’s going to kill us all otherwise.

Dodge honcho Steve Kuniskis conceded the new normal a few weeks back, acknowledging that the president selected’s avowal to require that all new cars average close to 50 MPG within about five years from now or be socked with punishing “gas guzzler” fines that will make them unaffordable for most people (these most people being the average people that are Dodge’s customer base) will make them untenable to offer for sale.

Dodge not being Mercedes-Benz or BMW – examples of brands that can charge six figures for cars because there are enough people willing and able to spend six figures on their cars.

But the people who buy Dodge’s cars – and the one SUV Dodge sells, the Durango – are middle and even working class people who cannot buy six figure cars because they haven’t got the means to pay for six figure cars.

Prior to the selection, they were able to buy big and powerful cars like the Charger and Challenger because they did not cost six figures. Even the Hellcat versions of these cars – packing more power than six figure exotic cars – were and still are financially feasible for average people.

Because they don’t cost six figures, either.

In fact, about half of six figures – $58,995 – buys you a 717 horsepower supercharged 6.2 liter V8 Hellcat. For the same money at Mercedes or BMW, you could buy an E-Class or 5-Series with a turbocharged 2.0 liter four cylinder/”mild hybrid” drivetrain . . . about 250 horses.   

The president selected’s plans will make the Hellcat – will make the Charger and Challenger – cost what an S-Class or BMW 7 cost, so as to make them not-financially-feasible for the average person.

Kunisksi tries to be optimistic, talking up a “Golden Age” of muscle cars that will be electrified or hybridized. The fly in the soup is that while these cars will likely be powerful – though not muscular, the distinction is important – they will not be affordable.

There is no such thing as an affordable electric car – period. The least expensive models -like the Nissan Leaf and Chevy Bolt – are priced well over $30,000 to start. For that you get a small transportation appliance that is not very speedy.

High-performance electric cars are all extremely expensive cars. A Tesla S – the electric car that can match the acceleration of the Hellcat – briefly, until it runs out of juice –  stickers for $139,990.

Speed does, indeed, cost money.

But it costs orders-of-magnitude more money when it is electric speed and that is where Kuniskis fails to grasp the improbability of any future for Dodge. Besides which, even if people could afford to buy electrified or hybridized Chargers and Challengers many wouldn’t want to buy them because without those big V8s, they aren’t muscle cars – just performance cars and thus no longer anything special, as the current crop is.

As an aside, it is hilarious evidence of the cognitive dissonance of our era that “gas hogs” are to be supplanted by energy hogs – high-performance electric cars that require twice as much in the way of batteries and consume 2-3 times as much in the way of power and thereby cause the emission of 2-3 times as much “climate changing” carbon dioxide as would be generated by a modestly performing electrified transportation appliance.

But never mind.

Dodge is doomed.

Probably also Chrysler, which currently sells only two models – one of them the Charger’s higher-class cousin, the 300 sedan. It’s on the butcher’s block, too. Which leaves the minivan – which suits for electrification because of the space for the batteries but isn’t likely to sell gangbusters because it’s a minivan. Add electrification – and double the price – and good luck with that.

Jeep and Ram are facing troubled waters, too- for the same reasons.  The models they sell – the models that sell – are the also the antithesis of electrification and all it will bring. Who is going to buy a $60,000 electric Wrangler? How about a $75,000 half-ton truck?

The time has come to say sayonara . . .

Fiat and Alfa are also terminal cases – but not because of the president selected. They just don’t sell – even though they comport with the new normal, being small and “efficient.” But maybe that will change when small and “efficient” is all Americans are allowed to buy and all they can afford to buy.

Nissan’s looking pretty green around the gills, too – ironically because of its pre-selection commitment to electrification. The company poured money into the leaky bucket electric car thing by building as many Leafs as it could, even though it could not sell them. It is hard to stay in business when you lose money on what you sell. The titanic discounting necessary to just get rid of the things – as much as $10,000 off the list price –  is also embarrassing, a liability to the brand’s image.

And it hasn’t helped that the rest of Nissan’s lineup is largely not what buyers seem to want these days – i.e., sedans like the Versa, Sentra, Altima and Maxima rather than crossovers like the Rogue (which does sell).

Even steady stalwarts such as Toyota and Honda have been having trouble selling formerly best-selling models like the Camry and Accord.

Broad-brush, the push for an electrified and hybridized future eliminates the need for more than a small handful of consolidated McCars sold by a handful of McBrands – as electric cars are fundamentally all the same cars, aside from their shape and color.

It may end up with a single entity – like the Tyrrell Corporation in the movie, Blade Runner – which made and controlled practically everything.

One size fits all. If you can afford it.

. . .

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83 COMMENTS

  1. Hello Eric,

    I woke up a little grumpy this morning and stumbled upon this

    https://www.bicycleretailer.com/industry-news/2021/02/09/bill-would-give-refundable-tax-credit-purchase-e-bike?utm_source=Bicycle+Retailer+%26+Industry+News+Audience&utm_campaign=59a8a36e49-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2020_12_11_07_14_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_0a535b8d4e-59a8a36e49-29157479#block-fb-social-fb-article-comments

    which made me grumpier. Of course, as the owner of a custom bicycle shop, I’m supposed to support this crap. Just thought I’d share a little gloom.

    Cheers,
    Jeremy

  2. “It may end up with a single entity – like the Tyrrell Corporation in the movie, Blade Runner – which made and controlled practically everything.”

    Well, that’s the new strategy of the Party of Antitrust, isn’t it?

    One political party. One messaging conduit. One social media provider. One email host. One most favored nation. One approved opinion. One Big Brother.

      • Don’t get yourself into a nut-roll, Eric. As long as we still have the 2d Amendment the feddle sloth-force is limited in what it can do to us. At bottom the Feds really have no apparatus to force, we, the peasants into compliance. The fops, dandies, limp-wrists, fruits, and various nuts in such places as Fire Island, SanFran, and Haight-Ashbury may roll over and play dead, but in the Heartland they’ll be unzipping their rifle scabbards, shooting their elected officials, and marching on their homes.

  3. Eric, you certainly have odd tastes in cars. I looked up the manual boxer Nipponese car, but nothing available.
    I looked up the Guinea 500X and the prices are good if you are a “hero”. I sent the dealer a GFYS if they will not hnor their price on the web.
    Either one of those would last five years without uncovered faults. What is stupid is hanging 19″ wheels on a subcompact such as the FIAT 500X. Fiteens are fine enough and will absorb far more road divots than the idiotic wheels that are standard. Losing 800 pounds would cure most problems.
    Anyway, the cheap cars are not available at the listed prices on the dealer pages. I wanted a cheap car that is half to a third of an EV that would not do so well when it is -10F. I do not have a heated garage.

    • Sorry, an update, it is going to go to negative 18 tonight.
      I did see my first Tesla last week and I invite the owner to park on the street outside my house. Your cheap cars that cost a third as much will start and heat up. The best was a Ford Escargot. That thing was great in snow unless bellied out. So what if the Escort was a POS, it did what it was supposed to do until wrecked by a poor child that drove a stolen car into it and then shot someone that objected to his driving technique. Poor baby was getting instruction from his Mama on becoming somewhat more of a bright boy in school. The fault lies with the peeps that do not have proper anti-theft devices on their cars. If the bad ones that did not protect their cars encouraged the lad to smash my car and gun down a passerby that had nothing to do with it.
      I suppose that the car culture of my youth had nothing to do with theft and killing. Perhaps it makes for better TV now.

    • Hi Erie,

      The dealers are being assholes, then – and I expect Subaru and maybe FCA would be very interested to know about their refusal to sell you a car. Seriously. I recommend contacting the manufacturers and explaining to them that you wanted to and were ready to buy one of their cars, but wanted it equipped as offered by the manufacturer and were told “no sale.”

      I’d be surprised if you didn’t get some action. Let me know if I can help!

      • Eric,
        I looked into a Subie a couple of years ago but found that here (Fargo, ND area) the dealer prices were all thousands more than the website. I didn’t press the matter however, I bought a chrysler 300 instead.

        • Hi Anon,

          It is generally true that dealers do this; i.e., keep an inventory of heavily optioned models and hope hey can sell these rather than the base/lower-trim versions without all the padding. One way to deal with this is to contact several dealers within driving range of where you live and tell each that you want to buy – name the model, the trim and the options you want as well as those you do not want – and ask them the give you their best price. Tell them you are not interested in a higher-trim model with options you do not want. Be very clear about this. Then let the haggle begin. Do this all via email, to avoid being sales-pitched. Just tell them to give you their best price or make them a reasonable offer. Be clear you’re serious and not just tire-kicking. Tell them you are ready to buy as soon as they can get the car you want at a price that is . . . reasonable. Not ridiculously marked-up. Not absurdly lowballed, either. In general, about 3 percent up from invoice is reasonable on a typical family-type car.

  4. As I’ve mentioned many times before, EVs are touted as a solution to these main problems with IC vehicles:

    Pollution
    Cost
    Complexity
    Dependence on a scarce and dwindling resource found in politically unstable and anti-American/anti-Western countries.

    EVs don’t really solve these problems, they merely shift them. For example, the pollution is shifted from the tailpipe of the car to the smokestack at the coal fired power plant. Or they shift being dependent on oil from the Middle East to lithium and cobalt in Africa and China. And they shift paying at the pump to paying at the electric meter.

    But they do shift them in such a way that is desirable to TPTB and the PC Posse. For example, the pollution isn’t seen in the skies over LA or Manhattan, but those over a power plant in Deplorable Country in Texas or West Virginia.

  5. Except in a communist controlled country (as opposed to a free market country), one size never fits all. The great hypocrisy of it all, however, is that even in a communist country, there are two classes, one class being the plantation rulers, and one class being the slaves.

    Of course, in a free market country (where are they today?), the people choose what they want, and the best of class seems to naturally rise to the top. Sadly, humanity has devolved into the bottom of the pit as far as plantation style government is concerned, but on the bright side, there are still sparks of genius and creativity that are struggling to surface. So, here’s my salute to individual freedom and liberty, along with a big thumbs down to everything tyrannical central government controlled. Have a nice day.

  6. How can the masses fail to notice that what is being forced upon us at gunpoint is nothing more nor less than a repeat of Stalinist communism, on a world wide stage? The notion that a thing is real because the Psychopaths In Charge say it is, in spite of the fact it bears no resemblance to reality, escapes any concept of reason or sanity. Which would include the plague, the recent election, all the CO2 panic, unlimited “money”, etc. Or, stated a bit more briefly, just about everything the Psychopaths In Charge say or do. How can a sane person not realize that NOTHING they have done even has the intent of improving our situation, while EVERYTHING they have done is in pursuit of our destruction, whether intentional or not, and I lean heavily toward the former. Perhaps they fail to notice because they have been taught not to by the public school system that the psychopaths own. Propaganda is quite often successful, even when it’s not legally
    required one submit to it for 7 hours a day, 180 days a year, for twelve years. More if you continue your “education”. Many of those leaning toward liberty fear the construction of camps to “re-educate” us, while not noticing that their children are already in one.

    • God, how I hate it when people refer to “we, the people” as the “masses,” as though we’re collectively a sodden mass of insensible living tissue, needing our betters to direct us in the proper course. Sounds just like Soviet and Chinese communism, which managed to solve the food crisis by letting the peasants starve to death and often simply shooting the few survivors.

  7. 200 million electric vehicles with a 50 kwh battery is going to be 10000 million kwh of electricity that has to be generated somehow, coal works, so your ev fuel will be electricity generated from coal, a fossil fuel, energy from the sun a few hundred million years old.

    All energy originates from the sun, no other source is available. Coal seams and beds are very old stored energy from the sun, there is no other source of energy available, the sun is it.

    The same for crude oil, it is all from the sun.

    No sun, no life.

    You can fool all of the people all of the time.

    Joe Biden, the most woke human on the planet, is a firm believer. har

    Joe is in for a rude awakening, just how it is in this world of woe. lol

    A wake up call is all that is necessary.

    You don’t have to lift a finger.

  8. Great, cogent, and depressing article, Eric. This is like a fucking horrible bad dream. Is this actually happening?

    FUCK ELECTRIC CARS and the people who mandate them.

    • Thanks, Michael –

      And: The most depressing to me thing (well, one of them) is that absent all this mandating and subsidizing, I am certain the market would have developed a low-cost, practical electric car for urban use. Not a mass market car. But something for people who don’t need a vehicle capable of long-range/sustained high-speed driving but do need something cheaper to own than a current gas-engined economy car capable of going 50 solid miles on a charge and able to keep up with urban traffic up to about 50 MPH. Basically, something like a moped but enclosed for winter/rain and that can carry 2-4 people and groceries, etc. Something that could be built and sold for a profit at around $10,000.

      Something that made sense, in other words.

    • Interesting video. The Forth Worth accidents appear to have been attributed to icy road conditions, and that, of course, begs the question of how to prevent such problems. Is/was the problem associated with poor road design? How about faulty road maintenance? Since the federal military now controls the weather in the USA, is the military at fault for allowing (or creating) such road hazards? Could the owners of the roads (the state?) have prevented the ice build up on the highway?

      In the end, people died, huge money investments were destroyed, and I suspect insurance companies will do their best not to pay for the damages. Truly sad story, but how does it relate to the article story line?

  9. Just sad. Dodge was the last bastion of cool, interesting actual cars.

    I loved that they were bucking the trend with comparatively affordable cars that were a bit bad ass.

    I’m putting hope in electrics just not making the grade. Plus since there is not enough minerals on earth to make all the batteries, nor infrastructure to support it, that this will all fall apart and sanity will resume.

  10. Eric, I saw this commercial yesterday:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sq0QzErOoag

    The commercial does a great job of sending the message of what they actually think of you and your competency level as an adult; you have no competence and you must be treated like a child for your own safety.

    They literally show us, first, all of the safety items parents use for their toddlers, then cut to the Volvo enacting a safety feature! “Since you are incompetent toddlers, we will keep you safe!”

    • Hi Philo,

      Well, that just ruined my day!

      And, you’re right: The message is, we’re helpless fools in need of constant supervision and protection. It makes me want to smash something.

    • Agreed that the verbiage at the end “we take care of you…” sounds a little condescending.

      But I also saw it as Volvo helping protect the kids, bc sometimes life is distracting…maybe a distinction without a difference.

      Personally, I would prefer to have to always brake myself and thus be on a more heightened alert at all times instead of being trained to rely on a computer to think for me.

      • Hi Anon,

        My aversion to all this “assistance” tech is that it short-circuits competence. If you’re responsible for the car and what it does then you tend be more on your game. More competent and responsible – out of necessity. But when you are told that the car will “keep you safe” the natural inclination is to get sloppy – because you can. Consider a man who walks a tightrope with – and without – a net. Which of the two do you imagine is more concentrated on the task and less likely to do something stupid?

    • All I saw was that Volvo drivers are careless morons. Backing blind onto a road? If you need a system to stop you killing yourself due to terminal stupidity, TAKE THE FUCKING BUS!

      • Hi Anon,

        True story: About 20 years ago, I attended a press preview for a new Ford;I can’t remember the model. But I do remember the Ford people excitedly demonstrating the auto-parking tech they had designed and were getting ready to include in their new cars. I had the temerity to ask whether people incapable of parking a car on their own had any business behind the wheel of a car and that perhaps it was a bad idea to encourage such people to drive by offering this sort of Band Aid, since a person who can’t park without “assistance” probably can’t competently perform many other behind-the-wheel tasks for which there is as yet no “assistance.”

        This did not go over well.

    • Sad thing is, Volvo used to make rock-solid tough-as-a-tank 300K mile sedans and wagons, and really didn’t need the safety crap. You bought a Volvo because you wanted Swedish bank vault sturdy. Now, they are just another SJW brand.

    • Interesting. As a parent, I’ve helped raise five kids into adulthood. None of them were injured or killed in car accidents. In fact, all of the cars and trucks were used primarily for transportation, and every state mandated safety feature that was forced on me merely raised the cost of the car or truck.

      I have owned Volvos and appreciated them for their durability and reliability, not for their safety features. However, let’s not forget that only rocks live forever – all animal life expires, and life is hazardous at all levels for everyone. What keeps us alive is our own brains and our own self protection habits from all hazards. From an early age, for example, I learned never to back out into traffic. People who back out into traffic seem to be inviting problems. IMO.

    • Volvo’s schtick has been for decades “sensible” if rather high-priced, bland, and only moderately reliable cars with rather maintenance requirements. Of course Volvos are all about virtue signaling – I’m better than you, you swinish lout – I care about the environment, while you, you pathetic buffoon, throw all your empty beer bottles and cans all over the place and probably, flush your toilets at most once a week to save on your water bills. BBbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbaap! Christ, not another wet one

  11. Joe Biden is the President of the United States of America! Yeah, right.

    The stupid is on fire. lol

    First and foremost, you need a constitutionally and duly elected president to occupy the office, i.e. the consent of the governed.

    Far from it. Ain’t happenin’, doesn’t smell right, doesn’t pass the smell test.

    An illegal regime that must be deposed, if 700,000 protesters protesting the results of the election, the proof in the pudding, can’t be heard, are demonized as insurrectionists, disgusting deplorables, idiotic Trump supporters, whatever those are, undoubtedly need to be hunted to extinction, the only and final solution, just has to be, be good for them, if that is all what it is all about, you have a serious problem, not going to be resolved peacefully, no big deal anymore.

    Who in hell wants peace? Nobody!

    What a farce, a travesty of a mockery of a sham.

    See them all in hell.

    After coffee time, it is time to drink.

    • Trump did many many bad things including allowing a stolen election. And now he’s hired the worst legal team possible for his impeachment trial. He deserves the hell that awaits him.

      • I agree, Mark –

        The Left is now framing Trump as a “white supremacists” who egged-on “insurrection” . . . in order to frame anyone who isn’t on the Left as both of those things. I begin to believe the Orange Fail succeeded. That this was his job.

        • Yes, and they are attacking OM to show the rest of us what they can and will do to us. Esp. since we don’t have the resources to fight like OM does. (although at this point, I am convinced that the “fight” against OM is about as real as the WWE stuff-unfortunately he is the proxy for us and that fight is real)

        • Yes, apparently anything that doesn’t precisely mimic the woke screed of the day is “White Supremacist”, and a temporary invasion of the Capitol building is an Insurrection-Riot-Death-Apocalypse-War-Siege. Of course, Antifa can seize several city blocks, and it’s a “Summer of Love”.

          And Eric, that’s the trouble with terminators. You can never tell until it’s too late.

      • I’ve come to believe we are seeing the Kraken released – on us. That his supposed 4D chess was being played on his supporters the whole time. Frankly, no one, and I mean no one, can possibly be this incompetent. He’s either so stupid as to be beyond belief, or the whole of this country has been played. Given how things are playing out, the proper conclusion is becoming inescapable.

        • how trump kept fauci on after he openly laughed behind his back is beyond me, Of course it was really president kushner the entire time. it still is. Kushner keeps trump off gab. Candidate 2015 trump checked out the second he was elected. that guy had some good ideas. oh well we’re fucked now

          • Hi Mark,

            The Kushner thing was – is – hard to fathom. He’s a nonentity boy compared to Trump’s mature, accomplished (to give him his due) man. His son-in-law. I have never known a man who defers to his son-in-law to such an extent.

            I don’t understand it.

            But I do know Trump allowed hypochondria to be weaponized. This is inarguable. The excuses don’t matter. The fact remains. And then comes the question: Why would a smart man (again, giving him his due; Trump is many things but he’s not an imbecile) permit the weaponization of hypochondria? A smart man would see – immediately, easily – the threat; that fear of “the virus” would be used to get people to vote absentee or rather enable mass (fraudulent) absentee voting and that would be the means by which his opponents would remove him.

            It makes no sense . . . unless they were not really his opponents. It does make sense if the Orange Man was a pawn, a tool – someone playing his role.

  12. “Jeep and Ram are facing troubled waters, too…..”

    Jeep has so much brand recognition and such a loyal following that it will survive, one way or the other. When Chrysler goes down, some other manufacturer will pick it up. I only worry that the next company will be a euro brand that will take Jeep upmarket price wise, and possibly go electro, too. Betcha they keep at least one ICE in the lineup, to appeal to well heeled retro-traditionalis.

    Ram has brand power too, though not as much as Jeep. I could see them doing well in a Kia show room.

    • I think chrysler could be changed into an electrified brand a la Cadillac. It has so few models now it would be an easy change. Replace 300 and keep the van, add a couple of electric crossovers. Not that I want that. I just think the lineup is so small right now they realistically could do that.

      • Hi Aanon,

        Chrysler could do that – and Stellantis may do exactly that. But will electric Chryslers sell? I see no reason to believe they will given the others haven’t!

  13. Oh, also in Blade Runner, they had flying cars. Where are the flying cars, Eric? Hell, why no widespread use of personal helicopters or gyrocopters?!

    Stupid future!

    • Hi BaDnOn!

      True, but the flick has held up really well. I watched it again the other night for probably the 67th time. I am a huge fan of PDK’s work; the guy was a master stylist.

      • I agree. Did you see BR 2049? I really dug that one as well. Dystopian land/cityscapes second to none, along with those dark ambient soundtracks.

        My comment was more of a critique on reality not meeting anywhere near our expectations. I understand that flying cars or affordable personal helicopters would be (and were always) quickly under the cross-hairs of the new Bolsheviks. Those things would mean FREEDOM on a level none have ever known. And we can’t have THAT now, can we?!

        • You may note that the little people seemed on foot or bicycle.

          Remember the line, “You are cop or you are little people.”? Cops had flying cars.

          SSDD

          • Sounds about right.

            It’s a little like Soylent Green. It was accurate in that there were a small privileged few, and even though Heston’s character was a commoner (“little people”), he was also a cop, and got away with robbing people blind and seemingly doing whatever he wanted.

  14. It continues to amaze me how these virtue signaling pinheads have no concept of reality in regard to electricity. They throw a switch and the lights come on, the coffee maker and toaster all work magically just by a cord going into the wall. I worked 42 years for the local power company and occasionally it was a miracle those things worked; the grid is so maxed out that they regularly send our robocalls on hot summer days to dial back the a/c usage or there will be rolling blackouts. Meanwhile there is plenty of hydro power available from Canada but the environazis don’t want to see power lines in the forest. Guess they’d rather freeze in the dark.
    There’s also a group of morons that wants to ban any more natural gas hookups, and phase out the existing ones. My gas furnace has been running pretty much nonstop this week with the single digit temperatures and I’m supposed to replace that with what exactly? Wonder how solar panels are working out for people in the Midwest where they’re having minus double digit temperatures.
    If only the busybodies of the world would mind their own business we could all live in peace; unfortunately you can’t fix stupid.

    • “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. This very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be “cured” against one’s will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level of those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles, and domestic animals.”
      C.S. Lewis, God in the Dock:

      • Volvo’s schtick has been for decades “sensible” if rather high-priced, bland, and only moderately reliable cars with rather maintenance requirements. Of course Volvos are all about virtue signaling – I’m better than you, you swinish lout – I care about the environment, while you, you pathetic buffoon, throw all your empty beer bottles and cans all over the place and probably, flush your toilets at most once a week to save on your water bills. BBbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbaap! Christ, not another wet one

    • Mike – how many of these types even know what a watt is, or an amp is, or how many volts the power runs at. Ive seen many times electric cars batteries talked about as “2000 iPhone batteries” or some crap like that. so kids thing that oh charging it is the same – no difference!

    • Sad thing is, Volvo used to make rock-solid tough-as-a-tank 300K mile sedans and wagons, and really didn’t need the safety crap. You bought a Volvo because you wanted Swedish bank vault sturdy. Now, they are just another SJW brand.

    • “Meanwhile there is plenty of hydro power available from Canada”

      Hold up there. California still owes BC for 1Billion+ for power they have not paid for. Should be cash up front now.

      Many in BC are ready to string up pols because they are selling power to Cali for less than half what they charge resident customers. Power provided by systems we paid for several times over and capacity we did not need so they could sell it to others at cut rates.

  15. I’m sure you know, Eric, that pouring sugar in the gas tank isn’t all that effective as a form of sabotage because sugar isn’t soluble in gasoline. It will cause problems IF the fuel pump sucks it up, but then only in the form of a plugged sock or filter.
    That said, BOY is the populace sucking it up! And the economy’s filter is clogged. The engine will run strong and true IF we can clean the tank of these central planners. It’s just a question of how and when.

  16. Largely because of EV fever and bubbling stock prices, US EV makers such as Tesla, Rivian, Fisker et al promote the notion that EVs are a game-changing technology, necessitating all-new corporate players who will leave legacy vehicle makers to go the way of buggy whips, running boards and flathead engines.

    Whereas the Rest of World, for the most part, views EV propulsion as simply a subsystem. Toyota, for instance, is partnering with Japanese electrical equipment manufacturer Panasonic. In Europe, Volvo is partnering with German electrical engineering giant Siemens.

    Sensible auto makers understand that the all-important know-how of design, coachbuilding and systems integration defines their business edge. Electric motors are commodity items. Battery technology is changing. But why bet an auto manufacturer’s future on such uncertain technical developments? Let the electrical engineering companies take that risk — it’s their specialty, after all.

    Just as chip makers never made much headway trying to produce their own branded PCs and phones, EV propulsion system manufacturers are unlikely to become dominant auto manufacturers. Most of them will end up getting bought out or liquidated, just as the early crop of internet-related businesses had a high attrition rate, despite raising eye-popping sums from true-believer punters.

    Yes, I’m a ‘bitter clinger’ to IC engines … deal with it.

      • Calf-high riding boots, ooh la la:

        In a pastel-colored French patisserie in Beverly Hills, Mistress Harley sips on a Bellini topped with raspberries and scrolls through surveillance monitors on her Android. “Oh, look, there’s Ben!” she says, tapping on the screen with her long magenta nails. “He’s naked.”

        Speaking into the microphone on the app Nest, which is usually used for things like home security and pet monitoring, Mistress Harley instructs the man to kneel on the floor and bow down to her. He obeys. “You can see that I’ve made him sell all his stuff and even his bed, so he sleeps on the floor,” Mistress Harley explains. “He lives in Sacramento. I’ve actually been considering buying a house in Sacramento and making him rent it from me.”

        Mistress Harley — who, like many in this article, refuses to reveal her legal name citing privacy and safety concerns — isn’t forcing Ben to do anything he doesn’t want to do. He is paying her a weekly salary to monitor him throughout the day. Sometimes she likes to cackle at him in the middle of the night via speakers installed in his bedroom. Other times, she’ll demand that he eat only meals that resemble dog food and send her photos as proof.

        https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/soloish/wp/2018/04/11/meet-the-dominatrixes-who-control-men-where-it-really-hurts-their-wallets/

        This is from the WaPo, hence reflects the prevailing culture in our imperial capital.

        Is poor ‘Ben’ your KongressKlown??

  17. I am getting very worried — VERY worried — about all these government decrees to require cars to get get 50 mpg or run on electricity. (Hell, my motorcycle doesn’t get 50 mpg. At this rate we’re going to end up like Pakistan or Bangladesh, where they pack three generations of a family onto a 125cc single-cylinder bike and drive it through the slums).

    But the fact is that NOBODY has got a practical plan for how all of this is going to be implemented and what the effects will be on the nation. Where is all of this electricity going to come from? Where is practical, affordable transportation going to come from? The overlords are just blithely decreeing it; therefore It Shall Come To Pass.

    There is precedent for this: The famine in Ukraine after the Soviet collectivization of agriculture, and the famine following Mao’s Great Leap Forward.

    “THEY” are going to decree something, and if “they” are wrong and it is impossible to implement, then YOU pay the price. Whatever that price may be.

    • Hi X,

      Me also – and that’s exactly what this is all about, ultimately. The people at the apex pushing all of this know perfectly well it’s not feasible or practical let alone economical. But that is precisely the point…

    • Just looked up the Holodomor last night. Horrible and horrifying. The “masters” decreed there would be food, and hey that’s all you need to do. It’s just like how they can decree there will be $1,400 for everyone, and there is! Or $15/hour and boom! Everyone’s rich, without any consequences or repercussions. Man, why didn’t they think of that before?!

      Funny how we never hear about the Holodomor, yet many more people died from it than in Nazi concentration camps. Must be because it was “a good idea in theory” and just an unfortunate mistake.

      Or it could be because the victims were just some dumb Slavs whose descendants happen to not control the entertainment, finance, and media industries and also control the most powerful political lobby in the US. Nah, couldn’t be.

      • Hi Michael,

        It never seems to occur to many people to “play out” the logic of a thing. If – as you’ve written – the government can just decree there will be $1,400 for everyone or $15/hour then why not $1,400 per week and $150 per hour? Let’s all be rich! And let no one object. Since if one has a right to $15/hour why not $20? It is like taxes. If they have the right to take 1 cent of your money they have asserted the right to take it all, whenever it suits.

        • Exactly. Everyone is in little bitch victim mentality as well when they want an increase to the minimum wage…”I’m underpaiiiiiid!” They put themselves in the shoes of the minimum wage employee, rather than the shoes of the boss or employer who’ll have to find a way to build that increase into the margins, or fire some people and make 1 person do the work for 2.

          But what am I talking about? “Businessmen are just greedy.”

          $14 million guaranteed, every day, forever. Anything less is selfish.

          Minimum wage $100,000 / hr, starting.

          Problem solved.

  18. If this continues I see a huge demand for aftermarket range extenders, ICE conversion kits and antique iron brought back from the grave.

  19. For fuck sake Eric, please stop! I can’t take it. My electrified future that is. No more talk about things that are doomed and let’s dwell on the good while we still have it. My sanity thanks you!

      • Hate to be a negative Nellie Eric, but in my area, V8 Chargers and Challengers are 50 grand, up to about 90, if you can find one. Now, the fact that you can’t find ‘em indicates that they are in demand, however, I don’t think those prices are really attainable for Joe Sixpack. Given the average salaries and median income, ain’t too many people round here can afford a 50 thousand dollar car. That said, I know there are a lot of idiots who’ll buy it anyway, with a 7 or 8 year loan. Nonetheless, I really don’t consider that to be affordable.

        • Hi Floriduh,

          The MSRP of the Charger R/T is $36,995 (about the same as the MSRP of a Chevy Bolt EV or a Nissan Leaf with the optional battery).

          Certainly, dealers load up on loaded examples with options pushing the price to $50k-plus. But the fact is the MSRP for the R/T starts at $36,995 and you can get one for that, or approximately, if you’re willing to order one and refuse to buy from a dealer who only wants to sell you one of his $50k-plus “in stock” models.

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