Here’s an interesting juxtaposition . . .
You may remember how furiously “concerned” the government was a few years back about the asserted danger presented by Volkswagen’s lineup of turbo diesel-powered cars, which the government claimed were causing great harm it never proved to be fact. But VW had “cheated” on government emissions certification tests; this hurt no one but greatly affronted the authority of the federal regulatory apparat.
The result was an inquisition worthy of Torquemada, encompassing the frog-marching, in chains, of senior VW managers to star chamber courts for persecution and the wholesale removal of TDI-powered Volkswagens from the market. These diesel-powered cars were not only innocent of having caused any harm to anyone, they had benefitted the hundreds of thousands of people who bought them, by cutting their fuel bills by a third or more (TDI-powered VWs averaged about 10-15 MPG higher than their gas-engined equivalents) without costing them a third or more to buy, as is the case with electric vehicles.
Which only last a third as long and travel a fourth as far.
You could buy a new diesel-powered VW Jetta or Golf back in 2015 for about $23k. Compare that with the cost of a new Nissan Leaf electric car, today. The latter costs almost $30k – and only goes about 150 miles. A diesel-powered Golf or Jetta could go more than 600 miles. It also wouldn’t need a new engine before it traveled 100,000 miles – as opposed to the Leaf, which will need a new battery pack that costs more than a new engine around that time.
Perhaps you can see why the government – which is now shoving electric cars down our throats – was so very “concerned” about those diesel-powered VWs. Most especially the one VW had in the works that was reportedly capable of traveling more than 100 miles on a gallon of diesel.
As contrasted with its indifference to the actual dangers and actual harm caused by what are styled “autonomous” electric cars, a styling as flouting of the facts as the styling about “fast” charging that takes at least five times as long as it takes to quickly refuel a gas-engined (or diesel) car.
The “autonomous” car ends your autonomy, as an individual. You no longer control the car or how it goes where it goes. You are taken for a ride, just as you were when you were too young to drive and mom and dad controlled the car. The difference being “mom and dad” are now the government-in-bed-with-corporations – and they want to keep you from ever driving the car.
Even if it kills you.
A whistleblower within Cruise – the “autonomous” car company and adjunct of General Motors that uses GM’s Bolt electric cars to take people for rides – has claimed that information about these “autonomous” cars crashing and actually hurting actual people (as opposed to VW’s cars that were never shown to have hurt even one actual person) has been suppressed. “At least one safety concern went unaddressed for months” and “employees generally do not believe we are ready to launch to the public but there is a fear of admitting this because of expectations from leadership and investors.”
Not to mention insouciance from government, which is manifestly less interested in the actual danger posed by “autonomous” electric cars such as the Bolt – as well as electric cars generally – which have a known (and baked in, as it were) tendency to catch fire and have actually caught fire, numerous times – resulting in the actual deaths of actual people. Does anyone remember that oceangoing cargo ship laden with a bellyfull of brand-new electric cars that auto-immolated on the open ocean?
Look, a squirrel!
We hear endlessly that if it saves even one life – a hypothetical life – then whatever the cost, it’s worth it. For us, to be forced to pay it. But when it costs actual lives, it’s apparently not worth it to call a halt to it – when whatever it is that’s actually killing actual people is something the government is interested in furthering. Electric and “autonomous” cars provide two damning examples in support of this allegation.
As contrasted with what the government is interested in quashing, like VW’s lineup of affordable diesel-powered cars – which presented an existential threat to the electric car and the “autonomous” car. The availability of $23k diesel-powered cars that exceeded 50 MPG on the highway – and could travel 600 miles on the highway – that could be expected to travel hundreds of thousands of miles before needing anything approximating the cost of a new engine – would have made for a devastatingly bad comparison with electric cars.
It was the only major automaker that sold a lineup of affordable diesel-powered cars. Had it not been for the inquisition, it is probable other automakers would have joined the fray, out of market necessity. Mazda – a price-rival of VW’s – was about to do just that. There were several new diesel-powered Mazda vehicles in the works. The inquisition put an end to that.
Put an end to affordable, extremely fuel-efficient cars – in favor of inefficient and expensive electric cars that have actually killed people, as by burning them to death. Or by “autonomously” driving them into immovable objects.
Saaaaaaaaaafety first comes second or third – whenever saaaaaaaaafety is at odds with the agenda of the government-corporate nexus.
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