The authoritarians know the importance of never letting a crisis go to waste. It’s why there’s always another “crisis” – in air fingers quote marks to convey the unreality of most if not all of the “crisis” that are used as the excuse to rob us of our liberty or money and often both.
Here’s the next one – or at least one of them:
It is asserted (it is always asserted when it comes to these “crisis”) that people’s health is harmed by the wearing-down of tires; that “particulate matter” is “emitted” and that it must be regulated, so as to protect people’s health. The big-name tire companies are all for these regulations because it means they’ll be able to charge people more money for “cleaner” tires and because it will make it that much harder for the smaller tire companies – which haven’t got comparable financial resources to manufacture “clean” tires – to compete with them. This latter being an example of regulatory capture – which advantages big companies that benefit from cost-adding regulations and for that reason not only don’t oppose new regulations but often advocate for them.
A prior example of this – one which set the precedent, really – was of course the so-called “passive restraint” regulation that went into effect back in the ’90s. It made it illegal for any major car manufacturer to offer for sale a car (or truck) not equipped with a “passive restraint” system. The regulations didn’t specifically say that air bags were the only way to meet the standard and some manufacturers met the standard via automated seat belts (some may recall) but, in the end, air bags became a de facto mandatory standard “feature” in all new mass-market cars (and trucks).
At first, some of the big-name automakers resisted, publicly talked about how air bags were a mixed-bag in that while they could be of benefit in the case of a serious accident, they were of no benefit at all if a serious accident never happened. Also, that they weren’t entirely “safe,” either. That they could – and did – hurt and even kill people. They also added considerably to the cost of a new car, because it’s more than just an air bag – or six – that has to be paid for by the customer but also the engineering of the car around those air bags. It’s estimated that air bags – most new cars have at least six – have added at least $1,500 to the MSRP of a new car, not counting higher insurance costs on account of the cost of repairing (of replacing) an air bag-equipped car if it is badly wrecked.
But then they – the big-name car companies – saw the light. Cue Johnny Cash. They realized they could simply pass the costs along to customers and if every major company had to pass them along, customers would have no choice and there’d be less competition.
That’s a bingo! (Cue Hans Landa from Inglorius Basterds).
That’s why big-name tire companies will be “able to market new technologies at what is almost certain to be higher costs to their customers.”
Same goes for the big-name brake companies, like Brembo – which says its Greentive discs and pads can “reduce emissions of particulate matter by 50 percent.” And – yes – there is also a “crisis” with respect to the “emissions” of brake pads, too.
The European Union has just put forward a whole new slew of regulations – styled “Tier 7” – that will require drastic reductions in the “emissions” produced by both tires and brakes, which will entail more costs passed on to new car buyers as well as everyone who buys tires (and brake parts, too). This will make buying new cars – and driving them – even more expensive and people won’t be able to avoid the expense, unless they don’t buy (and stop driving).
Not just in Europe, either.
The previous “Tiers” have already made new cars sold here more expensive because it’s too expensive to build cars to meet one (higher) and another (slightly lower) standard, so cars are built to meet the higher one. We also see this here in the case of what used to be styled “California” vs. “49 state” cars.
For awhile, the car companies built one set of cars that met California’s more onerous requirements and another set for the rest of the country. The “California” cars cost more and were often not available with equipment that was available in “49 state” cars, such as manual transmissions. But then the big-name car companies realized it would be cheaper – for them – to build all their cars to “California” standards as well as harder for the smaller car companies to comply with the California” standards once they became national – and so advocated that they be made national.
All of the foregoing money-grubbing being based on assertions, which by now ought to ring familiar. Everyone must stay home else everyone will die. “Masks work.” If you take this “vaccine,” you will not get and cannot spread “the virus.”
In the case of tire (and brake) “emissions,” it is asserted by the EU regulatory apparat that ” . . . longtime exposure to pollution from fine particulate matter and NOx from road traffic was responsible for more than 70,000 premature deaths in 2018, with 300,000 deaths from all air pollution.”
What they are is presumptively predicated – upon hypothesis and projections; extrapolations and “modeling.” All of it deliberately disingenuous. Just the same as the assertions made about the “climate changing.” We are required to accept these assertions as fact – and if we don’t, then we are deniers.
Irrespective of the facts.
The fulsome scurvy truth is that the tire (and brake pad) “crisis” is of a piece with prior “crisis” in that there isn’t one. Well, if you don’t count the real one. That one being the way one ginned-up “crisis” after the next is being used to systematically fleece us of our finances and shear away whatever’s left of our liberty.
When it comes to that, there’s a “pandemic” afoot, alright. One you can smell – every time you step in it.
. . .
Got a question about cars, Libertarian politics – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in! Or email me at EPeters952@yahoo.com if the @!** “ask Eric” button doesn’t work!
If you like what you’ve found here please consider supporting EPautos.
PS: Get an EPautos magnet or sticker or coaster in return for a $20 or more one-time donation or a $10 or more monthly recurring donation. (Please be sure to tell us you want a magnet or sticker or coaster – and also, provide an address, so we know where to mail the thing!)
My eBook about car buying (new and used) is also available for your favorite price – free! Click here. If that fails, email me at EPeters952@yahoo.com and I will send you a copy directly!