Diversity Not

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It’s funny that, given the obsession with “diversity,” there is so much homogeneity. On the showroom floor, too.

Most of all, even.

Not only do most crossovers – there aren’t many cars left – look pretty much the same (especially since probably two-thirds of them are painted silver or white) but they are also functionally pretty much the same.

All of them – all of the crossovers, at least – come only with automatic transmissions. The last one that doesn’t is Subaru’s Crosstrek, which won’t anymore after the end of the 2023 model year (and you may not be able to get one before the model year ends, as production of them has probably already stopped). This makes driving them largely the same, too. You push the one pedal and it goes. You push down on the other and it slows. When there was a third pedal, you had something more to do – and something different. It made driving such a car a different – a diverse – experience.

Engines are now almost all the same, too – and not just in crossovers. In the under $50,000 price range, almost everything comes standard with a 2.0 liter turbocharged four cylinder engine. Some produce more power than others but they are all basically the same. There are no air-cooled engines or two stroke engines or rotary engines – and very few diesel engines. These were very “diverse” kinds of engines. Cooling fins instead of coolant. A sound unlike any other sound.

And, of course, a cloud – in the case of two strokes, which burn oil on purpose.

Maybe they were not “environmentally responsible.”

But they weren’t all the same.

There are very few crossovers that aren’t front-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive. They are all “good in the snow” and drive pretty much the same. Rear-drive was different. Not as good in the snow, but more fun to drive in the snow. Because it’s sometimes more fun to go straight slightly sideways. There are still a few cars that aren’t front-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive, but only a few aren’t priced over $50,000 – which has the effect of making most of the ones most people can buy . . . all the same.

One of the few that still isn’t – the Dodge Charger – is still available. But not for long. It is slated to be replaced in 2024 by the most homogenous kind of car imaginable, the electric car. These don’t even have transmissions. But they do have the same universal plugs, just like a vacuum cleaner.

Every new car – every new crossover – comes standard with an engine that turns itself off when you didn’t and probably didn’t want it to. Traction control that turns on after you’ve turned it off. A steering wheel that corrects your steering. A radio that turns itself down – or off – when you’re backing up.

Most new crossovers won’t let you drive without closing the rear liftgate – without accosting you with obnoxious and relentless ding! ding! dings! to let you know what you already know; i.e., that you left the liftgate up on purpose, to allow you to fit/cart home something that would otherwise not fit in the cargo area.

You cannot find a new car without a touchscreen. The only diversity there is of length and width.

All new cars are “loaded” – a term that no longer has any meaning, like “vaccine.” There isn’t one that does not come standard with air conditioning and power windows and locks, intermittent wipers and cruise control. This means that none are available with wing vent windows to ventilate the interior without needing AC – or having to pay for it. When there was real diversity in the car market, you could elect not to. Today, you cannot. It’s not an “extra,” but the price is included. For air bags, too – another thing that’s all the same that was once different when some cars offered air bags and others didn’t.

It is part of the reason why you can no longer buy a new car that can be paid-off in three years rather than five or six. Which is why almost everyone is increasingly the same as regards their finances; i.e., they are all broke.

And bored.

. . .

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65 COMMENTS

  1. Worst case, supposing all one could buy and register in the future, new or used, is a crossover like a Ford Escape, I would still customize the heck out of it (brush bars, rims, tires, ground effects, paint, lights, and so on). Any form of rebellion is better than none

  2. Even though Fmr President Trump may have some flaws including his continued advocacy of the COVID shots, he did something that the CURRENT President so far FAILED to do: visit East Palestine, Ohio and deliver stuff like bottled waters to help citizens there……On Presidents Day Joe Biden was in Ukraine pledging MORE money to “Keeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeev!”…….

    https://www.wnd.com/2023/02/trump-steps-biden-failure-brings-truckloads-gifts-citizens-east-palestine/

  3. Eric,

    About the universal 2.0L engine, they’re becoming universal due to gov’t regs, correct? IIRC, these regs seek to restrict the output of CO2, right? Then, how can a turbocharged 2.0L engine produce less C02 than a normally aspirated 3.5L V6? If a 2.0L engine is turbocharged, doesn’t that mean a more dense fuel/air charge? In turn, wouldn’t that more dense fuel/air charge translate to more, not less, CO2 output? So, what is gained by the 2.0L engine then? Why don’t the carmakers offer 3.0L or 3.5L V6es? Why not offer V8s? Why don’t they tell Washington to fuck off? Why don’t they do their own research to show that the universal 2.0L engine isn’t the panacea the Feds think it is?? Sorry, I just don’t see how using a turbocharged 2.0L engine would make a meaningful reduction of emissions. Am I missing something here?

    • The auto manufacturers need to grow a pair; it’s that simple. It seemed like, in the past, they did have at least somewhat of a pair

      • All of America needs to grow a pair. A lot of us have been fighting this crap for decades and have the scars to prove it. All the while most people put their head down and did what they were told, no matter how offensive and evil the thing being done was.

        The average conservative wants to drug test welfare recipients and enforce child support. And “enforce the gun control already on the books”. Because they “have” to be drug tested at work and they don’t want to pay for those nigger’s kids. And these are the better half of our fellow “citizens”- short sighted idiotic cowards.

  4. While my GV-70 is on order, I’m looking at used SUVs. I need cargo space primarily in a new vehicle so a sedan is out and I can’t find a low-mileage wagon that I’d drive. My second must-have (after cargo) is engine. NFW will I elect to buy a used 4-cylinder — I don’t care WTF it is. As long as I have *any* option to get other-than 4-cyl, I’m doing it.

    I’m looking at a 2015 ML63 AMG (5.5L V8). Quite boxy IMO. Beautiful styling and nice interior. Looks like you just can’t really get as-sporty as a wagon (which is basically a sedan with a bigger butt) in an SUV. Too bad the ML63 that’s being auctioned has 54K miles or I’d be more interested. I need something that will last 10 years with me putting about 8K miles per year on it.

    Maybe I should just thank my lucky stars that I have the opportunity to get the GV-70 and shut up, sit down and wait for it. The combo of 3.5T, zero previous owners, ~0 miles, generous warranty, etc., is super hard to beat no matter which used car I look at.

    Even the AMGs that I have loved (from afar) for all these years. I never thought I would be faced with this situation, so I never tried very hard to get into an AMG or a Benz before.

    I really think this is my absolute last opportunity to buy a new car from the factory in my entire life. This will be the first and last time AFAIK. I always dreamed about doing so. And it has to be done (if ever) before 2026 because of the stupid shit that’s coming down the line.

    Unless things implode but I know how govt. works. They have a magical ability to prop up the stupidest shit, defying all common/practical/financial sense, because they say so. Look how long the fiasco of Viet Nam lasted — I mean really go into the history (not the MSM reporting). Viet Nam went on for decades and was always a stupid fucken idea.

    Look at this war on terror or the war on drugs! Always a lie. Always been a blood-letting, anti-liberty, anti-constitutional, inhumane, draconian, idiotic, unimaginable soul-sucking, repressive hate-fest that’s only ever lost to various degrees (never won) and has done nothing but cause misery, suffering, the loss of potential/opportunity, and transfer of wealth.

    So yeah, if I’m gonna get a new car in my life. It’s now or never. Fuck.

  5. Hi Eric,

    I have been faithfully following you for 2+ years now and cannot thank you enough for your delightfully ascerbic “common sense”.

    I am still driving and loving my 2001 Anniversary Edition Nissan Maxima SE with standard drive. It needed a bit of body work a couple of years ago (rocker panels and rear wheel wells) and I just replaced the clutch, a few seals and an ABS sensor. It has 166,000 miles and I intend to continue caring for it til the engine blows. It is such a pleasure everytime I get behind the steering wheel – to feel the power, the responsiveness, the torque and the sense of safety it provides. There is no screen, no GPS, nothing to control me.

    I have been driving standard Maximas since 1984 as “I want to drive the car, I don’t want to be driven. You can imagine what I think of electric vehicles.

    • Hi Gwyneth,

      Thanks very much for the kind words! Your Maxima brings back many fond memories for me, too. I remember test driving manual/V6 models when Nissan still made them – and when the Maxima was the “four door sports car” that BMW sedans no longer were. Hang on to that one!

  6. So many words, so little time. That’s life.

    Stay in your lane!

    Buying, having, owning, driving a car, if that is what it is, is more of a circus than a means of transportation. Uff da

    Unz dot com has writers that write a lot of words. Long-winded comments too, you still read though. What is going on in this world? har

    Human intelligence is busting out over there too.

    The first Hondas had air-cooled Honda motorcycle engines. A collectible N600 is 12,000 dollars if you want to buy one.

    No coolant needed, 2 liters of oil, some gas, you can go places.

    It’s not a D10, but will get you there.

    Now cars are like a book with too many words. Call me Ishmael is as far as it goes.

    The owner’s manual ain’t enough anymore.

    You need a 4,000 dollar scanner to make it go.

    Beam me up.

    • Hi Drump,

      Yup. My ’76 TA’s owner’s manual is maybe 35 pages long; something like that. A new car owner’s manual is hundreds of pages long, most of it having to d with “safety” and “apps.”

  7. Remember when they used to talk about when they were moving away from framed cars, that there would be far more choices with unibody?

    What a lie that turned out to be.

    In the bad old days, a single model could be a two door coupe (with a hatchback option), a four door sedan, a convertible and a station wagon. Now you all you get is a four door for the most part. You would think it wouldn’t be that hard to have at least that variety within a model line.

    Getting to the point of crossover, minivan (though those are going extinct too), large or larger pickups and large SUV’s. At some point it will likely be harder to get the pickups and large suv’s or they will be so underpowered you won’t want them. If crossovers don’t work for you, (as they likely are a poor choice for at least 15% of the population, like large families) you will be largely screwed as they will be the only choice for most left.

    Tells you what our overlords think of larger families too. They hate those people with a passion as most are awake to what is to come.

  8. Eric, you and I both know that they want us all to be about as “diverse” as the chips in a Pringle’s can, and as equally contained, immobile, and consumable. The Woody Allen movie “Sleeper” is fast becoming a reality, minus the hot & sexy Dianne Keaton, of course!

  9. I’ve been driving my sister in laws Subaru Crosstek, fairly new, for a couple days.
    It surprised me how responsive it was, I wasn’t expecting that. Pretty nice car on how it performed anyway.
    BUT, the constant beeping was crazy. This, that, and one that somehow knew I was looking out the window at the nice scenery. “beep, beep, beep, put your eyes on the road”, and “beep, beep, beep, put your hands on the wheel”
    Not kidding. Even if I was in the backseat the seatbelt chime would turn into a full on blaring. I couldn’t figure out how it knew I was looking out the window. Tried to fool it, but couldn’t. I was able to fool the wheel thing though with my knee.
    ohhh, pretty sure this car has a CVT trans which I dis-like, but it acted and ‘shifted’ like a regular trans, coulda fooled me.
    So I’m guessing that the fed will continue to ramp up all this crap, until we are zombies. Already are to some extent.
    What a disaster all this crap is to people that know how to drive and take offense to others telling us how too.

    • Hi Chris,

      Your sister-in-law’s Crosstrek has Eyesight, a truly Orwellian eye-movement monitoring system. She should have got the manual version, like my sister did. It is the only version of the Crosstrek that does not come standard with Eyesight!

  10. Since when does anyone think gov gives a rats ass what anyone (except them) wants or thinks?

    They have learned over the years to eliminate the sale and/or production of any product we may want forcing us to whatever they demand we want. (lol) And unfortunately, most of us willingly go along rather than go without.

    They have discovered that the humans today no longer resist, anything gov dictates.
    For every one that resists,,, ten thousand go along to get along. Now that most are barefoot, indebted, broke and hungry it’s even easier for them to insist. Want a yob, get the shot mentality. And these new generations? They’ll own nothing and be happy and will be eating zem bugs in no time.

  11. Eric,

    Loved the rotary engine video, especially the “muzzle flash”. What caused this? High octane gasoline? Explain!

    Also of mention are turbine engines. Development in that area would’ve been beneficial. Not to mention the sound! Knight Rider (KIT) made that turbine whine, which always seemed futuristic.

    What I though was also righteous about turbine engines is the 100,000 mile oil change, as well as the ability to use a wide range (diversity!) of fuels. Sounded like a great post-apocalypse engine!

  12. Breaks my cold, dead heart.

    So glad though my Bronco isnt the norm; Soft top, 2dr, manual, and while a turbo 4banger, its got an extra .3 liters of displacement.

    Still, after this, other than a Toyota, “New” would be a used car thats well maintained, mileage be damned. Service records are vital, no records no interest, and definitely no autos, got my parents SUVs and the company car for that.

    Sidenote, doesnt the Alfa Stelvio come RWD Default with an optional LSD?

  13. I believe there’s negative feedback, as time goes on, of not having people become excited about vehicles at an early age, leading to automotive ennui and a cycle of treating vehicles as more and more boring appliances.

    I’ve been fascinated with cars since an early age. The year was 1981; I was 4 years old and my family lived in a rather dense neighborhood, and I remember being fascinated by all of the neighborhood vehicles. Everywhere, there were VW buses, beetles, muscle cars, full size station wagons, giant Cadillacs, ful size vans, tiny cars, medium cars, you name it, all with very diverse colors, hubcaps, etc. and of course very diverse engine sounds (e.g. an air-cooled beetle sounded vastly different than a 1971 Galaxie with a bad muffler).

    Imagine a 4-year-old today. A little, but not much, diversity in all of the new and used cars in a typical neighborhood. There is some slight hope though; I occasionally get compliments from kids in my neighborhood about how “neat” my 1997 Z28 Camaro with Flowmaster exhaust sounds and looks. I’m pretty far from a big city, and thus neighborhoods like mine still have a relatively decent amount of older hot rods and other diverse vehicles (as opposed to urban areas where I tend to see a lot more boring new cars not to mention a plethora of Teslas, and much fewer old and/or diverse cars). So I still have SOME hope that the future generations of auto enthusiasts will keep some new diverse vehicles being built in the future

    • My hope is by the time I gotta 4yr, they’ll wake me up and choose which one of my future cool cars to go out in

      Thats my goal, to have a small collection. Hey Eric, whatcha think of the first gen CTS-V?

      • Hi Zane,

        On the CTS: Back circa 2009 or so, I had a CTS-V to test drive. Took my then-father-in-law for a quick spin down the road. 147 in fourth, bumping the rev limiter…

    • Can relate dood; different country, different cars, but sometime late last year I ventured in to a neaby city to visit a friend. I parked my lifted Lancruiser 75 series pickup with 33inch tyres and bullbar with spot lights amongs them new cars. As I was leaving, I found a group of kids ogling and wondering at how ‘cool’ my farm workhorse was.

      • Ditto that, Espico!

        I get the same whenever I take the Great Pumpkin – my ’76 Carousel Red Trans-Am – out for a drive. Or even not. My old college buddy brought his son (17) and some of his friends over a week ago. I fired it up and let them listen to the rumpety-rump of the 455…

        • And, you guys have nice vehicles! I got some of those same types of reactions from teenagers (or therebouts) when I was driving my rusted out, beat up, lifted 4×4 ’94 Toyota pickup!

          I mean, I think it’s a kinda cool looking pickup, but by the reactions, you’d think I was driving a vehicle like you guys got.

          • I don’t know how many times, out on a drive in one of my Miatas, with the top down, I heard “I like your car”. Too which I replied, “so do I”.

      • When I drive my 71 Olds 442 convertible people wave and compliment it. It seems everyone from young kids to geezers love it and its odd color. Bittersweet is what it was called. It’s a shade of burnt orange with a hint of bronze. That’s what I call her too. It is Bittersweet to know what was lost overall but still there for those of us that know.

        • Hi Gray,

          You have a great car – and a great color, too! I remember my parents’ 72 Olds 98, which had a Rocket 455. That was the first car I ever “worked” on, too…

        • My F.I.L. had one of those burnt orange/bronze 442’s, I think it was a 1970. I got to drive it few times (manual tranny) it was not too shabby. Not. At. All.

          …I’d forgotten all about that car. Thanks for the flashback.
          And, “Bittersweet” I did not know that. It certainly was an unusual color.

  14. What if enforced homogeneity suddenly splits into militant duopoly? Richard Solomon muses on Civil War 2.0:

    ‘Given that the first US civil war was an oligarchic conflict, what would today’s US-based oligarchs fight over in a 2.0 civil war? Slices of cherry pie. Control of population centers.

    ‘What would the hoi polloi fight over? Trans bathrooms. Abortion. Race issues. School prayer. Whatever else oligarchs don’t care about.

    ‘If the oligarchy knows civil war is inevitable, they’re going to control it. How would the optics of a Rothschild Zionist-managed civil war look? Controlled opposition vs controlled opposition: Think Bill Gates vs Elon Musk. Steven Crowder vs The Young Turks. Breitbart vs MSNBC. Ted Cruz vs Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Christian Zionist mega-church vs Epstein-Harvard (the heads of the academic departments and ex-president were regular guests at Epstein Island). Antifa vs Q-Anon. War with Russia firsters vs War with China firsters.

    ‘Any civil war discussion needs to factor in the Pentagon. They control the soldiers and weapon systems. If the MIC split into two factions, I imagine we’d see something like “woke” Pentagon vs “family values” Pentagon, with Raytheon owning both sides.’

    https://www.unz.com/article/imagining-us-civil-war-2-0/

    ‘And so it goes,’ as ol’ Kurt Vonnegut used to say. Until it doesn’t.

    • They’ll probably try this.

      It will probably work…until/unless everyone figures out that all the leaders suck, and they should also probably go after Big Defense, Big Banking, Big Food, Big Tech, Big Medicine/Pharma/Insurance, and Big a few other things.

      The Big Criminals would probably all fit inside the conference room at the Holiday Inn.

      • Hi Publius,

        In the before times (pre 2020), there were people on “The Left” who bleated about the EVILS of “BIG ______!” Now, they support mandates that are likely to make BIG _____ BILLIONS of dollars! We saw that with mandates for people to take an experimental mRNA jab, which to some degree resulted in BILLIONS of dollars for Pfizer, Moderna, etc., and now many of them have even instituted mandates (or want to) for new lawn equipment, stoves, automobiles, etc., to be “100% ELECTRIC”! The cognitive dissonance in these people runs deep, especially when you consider that they opposed “W’s wars” & the military-industrial complex 20 years ago, but now are ALL IN with a proxy war against Russia that we have NO business being involved in. Guess what? The military-industrial complex has gotten quite wealthy too the past year or so off of this proxy war, but the Biden Thing continually pledges BILLIONS of dollars and more & more weapons to “Keeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeev!” while trying to take guns away from law abiding Americans who’ve harmed no one.

        They also bleated “My body, my choice!” for 50 years when it came to abortion, but told everyone else “You MUST wear a mask!” & “You MUST take a COVID vaccine or else!” and used government, police, or unelected bureaucrats at some alphabet soup agency to enforce it.

    • The American war between the states was about the economics of the steam engine. The northern states had a pretty nice manufacturing economy exporting finished goods to Europe, because they had fast moving river water power. The invention of the steam engine meant Europe, and England in peculiar, was now able to intake raw materials and produce finished goods for less than the New England markup.

      The New England factory owners wanted to protect their market lock. The only reason they didn’t want slavery was because the plantations could set up their own factories to produce finished goods for much less than they could, year around, and with slave labor. Talk about deflation!

      The next war will probably be over taxation, if it happens at all. Tax revenue today only goes to mandatory (social security, medicare, federal pensions), military and debt service spending. ALL discressionary spending is debt driven today, and sometime in 2025 will probably dip into military and all debt service will be paid with more debt (depending on how you draw the chart of course). Tax revenue will have to increase somehow, or there will be defaults, or a new currency, or some combination. It will suck for someone and I doubt JP Morgan/Chase/Wells/CITI/FED will put up with forced bankruptcy, so that means the taxpayers will take the hit. That’s when things get interesting. With federal spending out of the picture the honus for services will fall back to the states. Some states will fair well, some, not so much. There will be seizures of federal land by the states and border disputes. Water rights and road rights of way will be challenged. Could get ugly pretty quickly.

      • RE: “The next war will probably be over taxation,”

        Or, perhaps backyard chickens & family pets?

        Per the link I posted on The Forum.

        Kinda strange, the symbol of the resistance might be a chicken.

      • RK, you’re missing the problem. It’s fiat currency and the Fed. Debt has been rewarded and saving punished for a looong time now. I can’t even remember the last time a pass book savings account paid out higher than inflation. In other words, “don’t save, borrow and spend.,”

        • Only because the United States’ biggest export, by far, is dollars. The oil and underground economy runs on dollars. Or it did until recently. If you were an oil producer you took dollars or you got the Qaddafi treatment. Unless you were once friends of the empire, then you got Iraq-cked, just to keep everyone else in line.

          This is the ultimate sin of Putin, but of course everyone here knows this already. What is different this time is that the two biggest populations on Earth seem to be taking his side, if only because they can get a good price and maybe make a buck laundering his dirty crude. Too bad the people in charge don’t see it, or just don’t care.

      • Hey RK, et al,

        The Fed has a conundrum, and a predictable one at that. The Fed has bought up metric shit tons of debt including mortgage debt and T notes. At this point if the Fed lets rates rise to curb inflation, servicing the debt becomes the number one line item in the budget…more than military spending, more that all other programs bit off by bloated bureaucracy. Jeff Deist has discussed this on the Human Action podcast. From a high level viewpoint, this situation is the predictable result of adopting the Hamiltonian vision of strong central government, central banking and standing armies as opposed to the Jeffersonian vision. Most of this community can clearly see the general outlines of what happens when empires collapse….not much we can do about it sadly. I mourn for what the younger generations will have to experience in the next hundred years, if we survive the intense drive by the American Empire to provoke Russia into a nuclear war…..at that point all of the discussions become pointless…..the human species, along with the majority of other life on this ball of mud will disappear…the ultimate environmental disaster, so much for Gaia…

  15. The Left has screeched for years about DIVERSITY, but just the past few years has proven that’s complete bull crap as they tried “silencing”/ “canceling” dissenting voices on lockdowns, COVID, face diapers, COVID jabs, climate change, transgenders, “Keeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeev!”, EVs, the 2020 Presidential election, the January 6th “INSURRECTION!”, etc. They’ve even gone after lifelong liberals such as Naomi Wolf & J.K. Rowling for being dissenters.

    One thing I find astounding about “The Left” is that their narratives almost sound identical to those uttered by the globalist technocrats of the world trying to radically change humanity.

    • I wonder if they are liberals anymore since their side is after them now. It’s 40 years past time for a repudiation and a realignment

  16. Wow, I feel extra automotively diverse! I have 4 total vehicles: two 2-door manual cars, one station wagon, and one minivan. My previous vehicles were also very diverse by today’s standards as well (no crossovers; one of my vehicles was a manual station wagon that I’d still have today if it weren’t for someone else crashing into me). The only 4-door sedan I ever had was still diverse by today’s standards, because it had a front bench seat and a column shifter (a Grand Marquis).

    Clearly, it looks like I’ll only be obtaining used vehicles the rest of my life, due to the manufacturers not offering diversity (or extremely little). If I had $$ for new vehicles, I would buy a new GMC Savanah and a new manual Mustang, Camaro, or Challenger.

    Do any of you have hope for more possible diverse offerings in the future? I was excited in or about 2011 when Acura offered the TSX station wagon for a couple years after that (and I may end up buying a used one in the future). Hopefully, such offerings will pop up from time to time

    • Hey dood,
      I was really hoping to buy a VW diesel hybrid, figured it would be the last car I’d ever buy. It would outlast me and I could pass it on to my son; unfortunately Uncle made sure that would never happen since it would turn the whole EeeeeVeeee rational on its head.

  17. Homogony is the very purpose of socialism. All animals are equal. But of course some animals are more equal. But not you. The only way to achieve “equal” is to force all down to the lowest common denominator. Except for the “more equal” of course.
    Looks like the car industry has gotten there. To the lowest common denominator. And it’s pretty damned low.

    • John,

      It’s safety in numbers.

      If all the little fishies look the same, then it’s harder for the sharks to focus in on one of them & eat it for lunch.

      • Agreed. As much as I would like to have a brightly colored conveyence, I drive fast. Therefore, I need something that doesn’t stand out. They have made it easier since it is harder than ever to pick out a Grey Acura TL traveling at 100 mph from the crowd.

  18. Frontal crash, roll-over, bumper height, side impact regs all control the ultimate exterior design. Emissions, mileage regs control engines. All come from Govco busybodies that probably were bullied in gym class. Now they’re getting their revenge.

    Unless and until people realize Government, as an institution, is the enemy nothing will change.

    I submit that Government was an institution that was created by people thinking it would advance civilization. I think that the experiment has failed. I offer the United States of America as Exhibit “A” that this monstrosity cannot be controlled and must be abandoned. It is impossible to control it via words on parchment. As a civilized, non-violent people we need to find ways to organize our affairs that do not involve the coercive, abusive and corrupt entity that is Government.

    • As many will likely recall, my very favorite criticism of government is that they all depend upon their usurpation of authority to kill you if you disobey. They cannot function without that authority. Which does not attract sane people to engage in it. It does however attract socio/psychopaths, and fits their desires perfectly. Which is why all governments are eventually saturated with them, sooner rather than later. As ours is.

      • Amen John, and for the rare times when “words on parchment” might slow things down they simply declare an “emergency” and rule by decree.

      • Hi John,
        Precisely correct….Heinlein sums it up pretty well…
        “Political tags – such as royalist, communist, democrat, populist, fascist, liberal, conservative, and so forth – are never basic criteria. The human race divides politically into those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire.”

        Heinlein is probably my favorite source of short quotes, though Menken is damn good too…

    • And layers on layers of safety rules. Rollover crashes kill 0.00001% of the driving public? Better make giant roof supports. Need to support the airbag system? Make glass thicker. Glass too thick, affecting fuel economy? Make the glass area smaller. Glass too small to see out the back? Add a rearview camera and display on the dash. And soon: Rearview camera gets smudgy when mag chloride gets all over it? Add a tiny wiper and spritzer nozzle.

      No one ever considered all the knock-on effects of making sure a roof could support an SUV. Well, I’m sure some engineer considered it, but figured out that physics makes it not practical. A tank offers a lot of protection, but you have to learn how to drive looking through a periscope. Or set up cameras, Heemeyer style…

      • ‘Rearview camera gets smudgy when mag chloride gets all over it? Add a tiny wiper and spritzer nozzle.’ — ReadyKilowatt

        AH HA HA HA … I roared with laughter at this quip. But just wait for the interior cameras connected to the post-2026 kill switch in your cell phone on wheels.

        A WSJ article expands on the horror of text search in photos, in actual cell phones:

        ‘Apps such as Apple Photos, iCloud Drive and Google Drive now offer the ability to search text within images and documents. In the Journal’s tests, a search in the Apple Photos app for ‘SSN’ (Social Security number) and ‘TIN’ (taxpayer identification number) immediately produced a photo of a 1099 tax form with Social Security information that had been stored on the phone.’

        https://tinyurl.com/5842vjcx

        And so your vehicle becomes a mobile extension of the digital Panopticon, seeing all, knowing all, including facially ID-ing you and your pax. Better be good, for goodness sake!

        • And these systems tie into a translator too. That way your “leaders” can be blackmailed by the CCP without them needing to learn Engrish. Heck, teach the AI to look for “useful information” in your photo stream and it will do all the work -including the paralegal grunt work for the prosecutor.

          Eventually with deep fakes, they’ll just plant a few creative edits into your stream. Soon everyone will be caught on Epstein Island!

  19. ‘It’s funny that, given the obsession with “diversity,” there is so much homogeneity.’ — eric

    Homogeneity is sadly typical of mature industries such as autos, whose commercial debut was about 120 years ago. In their first 60 years, auto makers built what they wanted, producing wild and weird diversity.

    Then Ralph Nader, Joan Claybrook and Big Gov butted in around 1965. Now our vehicles have the heavily-regulated sameness of gray Soviet-era apartment blocks. Only the giant 3-ton pickups with their mean faces, big wheels and two-foot step heights provide comic relief, as short and/or fat Americans awkwardly clamber into and out of vehicles that violate every principle of ergonomics.

    Auto makers now resemble the brain-dead retail banking industry, also intensely regulated. Every bank offers the same deposit, withdrawal, and payment services. This chart from Jim Bianco of Bianco Research shows that banks (thick blue line at bottom of the chart) have provided almost no return to investors since 2007:

    https://ibb.co/bHYgM1G

    Auto makers, I contend, stand about where the idiot banks did in 2007. The next recession, brewing now, will take them way down. Some will die; whereas the politically connected ones will be bailed out by Big Gov. But as in the 1930s, recovery will prove elusive.

    Buyers are unenthusiastic about their costly, undistinguished products. Meanwhile, the EeeVee aberration already is bleeding them with heavy capital investments, but only a trickle of actual, you know, SALES.

    Brain-dead auto makers have bought into the Soviet value subtraction model of Leonid Breshnev. It leads only to liquidation. And as Rhett Butler said to Scarlett O’Hara at their final parting, “Frankly, dears, we don’t give a damn.”

    Die, GM, die.

    • “…Only the giant 3-ton pickups with their mean faces, big wheels and two-foot step heights provide comic relief, as short and/or fat Americans awkwardly clamber into and out of vehicles that violate every principle of ergonomics…”

      Maybe. Although I don’t have a truck, my lifted, heavily modded 4Runner is actually a station wagon per insurance, however, the sticker on the back is true. “Don’t follow me, You won’t make it.”

      When the road is blocked for whatever reason a 4WD is a must. Learned that lesson long ago during a Hurricane evac..

    • It will be interesting to see, if we don’t get nuked or forced into concentration camps, what will take the place of the car’s latest incarnation. Wyoming is considering legislation to ban the EV after 2035. Maybe some states will create a new classificaiton of vehicle, not subject to regulation that will allow it to be driven on public roads. Some states will likely ban cars. Who knows.

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