Celebrating Diminishment

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It gets tedious having to bat away the rationalizations for the EV’s numerous shortcomings. Has there ever been a case of an inferior product being defended to the extent EVs are defended?

Try to imagine people defending Betamax against the VCR – when it had become obvious that the VCR was the superior product.

For those not old enough to remember, there was a brief battle for market between the video cassette recorder (VCR) and a rival called Betamax. The VCR cost less and performed better, so Betamax lost market. The VCR, in its turn, gave way to the compact disc – which is still around but has to vie for market with streaming.

This is how it usually goes – which is to say, it goes from worse to better – when the market is (per The Chimp) the decider.

But government often decides differently – as in the old Soviet Union, where the government decided the only car the average Russian would be allowed to have – maybe, after many years of waiting – would be a Trabant, which was an awful little car barely worthy of being called such. It was inferior in every way to the cars that were available in the West, which at that time was still very different from the old Soviet Union. The people who were stuck living in the Soviet Union understood they’d gotten the short end of the stick and didn’t try to rationalize the “virtues” of living (of being forced to live) a meaner, harder life.

As America becomes more and more like the old Soviet Union, we are witness to something truly remarkable: The ardent defense of a meaner, harder life. Trabant Worship, almost. Nothing else makes this strange phenomenon more evident than the endless apologias for the EV.

Bad enough that people are being forced into these things – assuming they can afford to be forced into them (most can’t). Much worse is that so many people are or seem to be happy about being forced into these things.

They defend diminishment.

They talk of “fast” charging as some kind of boon – when it means having to wait 30-45 minutes or longer to do what Americans have been accustomed to being able to do in less than five minutes. What’s your hurry, they say? Did Russians waiting in bread lines say the same?

They dismiss as “no big deal” a car that can maybe go 250-ish miles before it must be plugged in to a charge point and tethered there – while they wait there – for at least 30-45 minutes at a “fast” charger before it recovers a partial (80 percent) charge.

Who has to drive more than 100 miles in a day, they say?

As if that vitiated the fact that they used to be able to drive 500 (or more) miles in a day without having to stop and wait multiple times along the way.

They downplay the fact that it is not generally possible to “fast” charge an EV at home – because very few homes have the commercial-grade wiring and necessary upgrades to be capable of feeding 400-800 volts of electricity to an EV at home. Yet being able to charge at home is one of the most talked-up EV “benefits” as being able to charge at home means not having to stop at “fast” chargers or “dirty” gas stations (for less than five minutes, to get a fully fueled tank).

No worries, they say!

I’ll plug in when I get home and my EV will be ready to drive in the morning! But what if they need to go somewhere before then? What if they haven’t got time to wait overnight? Americans didn’t used to have to plan like this. That was for people who lived in countries like the old Soviet Union, where central planners planned everything.

Americans just went – whenever they liked – without any plan at all.

It is (or so it seems to be) no problem that EV’s range goes down by 20-50 percent when it’s very cold out. Or very hot. Or if you hook a trailer to one – as in the case of electric pick-ups.

If any other car imposed such a diminishment, no one would accept it – let alone make excuses for it.

But I will save money on maintenance! Sure, if you don’t count the money you’ll spend on a new battery when the one that came with it loses its ability to hold a full charge. And in the meanwhile, you’ll be paying for tires more often – because these wear out faster because EVs are much heavier and because of the high torque output of electric motors.

But that’s just it! EVs are quick! They accelerate like rocket ships! And – just like rockets – they burn through their “fuel” very quickly and then they stop accelerating at all.

These EVs – which don’t go even half as far as most other cars, that take at least five times as long to get going again than other cars – also cost tens of thousands more than other cars. People are literally paying more for less – and they are celebrating it.

The psychological implications of this are fascinating.

What appears to have happened in the West is that people have been so thoroughly shamed about not leading a mean and diminished life –  and taught that the highest virtue is to renounce a comfortable, affluent life – that they are eager to make excuses for the diminishment that is being imposed upon them.

This is what comes of a society in which meaning has been hijacked – and replaced – with a new meaning. It is not fundamentally dissimilar from the meaning the Soviets sought to impose upon Russians, but there is an important difference:

Most Russians understood they were being diminished – and didn’t pretend there was anything meaningful about it.

. . .

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94 COMMENTS

  1. Geebus ,

    I must be missing something….I could have sworn a “Trabant” was a “piece of shit” car that starred in several “Iron Curtain” themed flicks compliments of the East German Govt. automotive industry……The Russkies have other models No?

    Aww heck…I’ll settle for a Holden.. 😉

  2. The day will come when someone dies because ambulance services weren’t available soon enough and they couldn’t get to a hospital quickly because their EV wasn’t charged.

    What then?

  3. Off Topic: There are multiple new car washes being built in my area, and my understanding is many across the country. These are subscription car washes. It all seems so artificial. Now, all of a sudden, multiple millions of dollars are going to be spent all on the same thing, at the same time. Why? Since car ownership is not in the plans for the oligarchs, I wonder why those behind all these car washes foresee the need (or, heh, “market”) for so many more car washes in the future. Any ideas?

    • Are they solely subscription car washes, or is it just an option?

      I’ve been noticing the many car washes popping up around this area, too. And, the many ads on the A.M. radio station for them. Seems like it’s a bit like self-storage units or commercial real estate, …all built up, & overbuilt?

      I was going to look up something specific here, but, pick any title?

      http://housingbubble.blog/

      …My day is over.

    • They just opened a big Caliber car wash franchise near me in Eastern NC. Subscription model. Nothing makes your 12+ year old (avg. car age now) ride look better than a car wash. I pay for one now and then (funny enough got one today not a Caliber, though) but would never “subscribe.”

    • Re car washes: Same here in my part of FL – three car washes within one block, and two of them are new. Also, less need for washing here compared to snowbelt states. I often get “car washes” in a good rain.

      • Memory Foam Mattress….Ahhhh…

        ….Opps, we’re talking “Money Laundering”
        okay……..Broward County “CARWASH”

        Options:
        1) Open a Colombian restaurant …no one ever goes to…Still open after all these years;
        2) Open a Korean restaurant ……..no one ever goes to….sitrep…same as above
        3) Open Mojito Bar “sparsely populated”……still ticking……etc etc

        I won’t even get into the 70% vacancy rate….of high rise condo “self serve Laundromats” used as “Get Out Of Dodge Krash Pads” by every pillaging scoundrel…..south of the Panama Canal.

        Observations of an inebriated CPA…

        • RE: “Observations of an inebriated CPA…”

          Oh, I like those.

          Much better than sober observations from a lawyer who has given up.

          …Much.

    • When you are living in an apartment with 4 others, where will you wash your car?

      I was thinking about this last week while in Tampa. Massive apartment complexes going up. Not too many new single family houses in relation to that.

      All the Uber/Lyft drivers will be subscribing as they respond to your beck and call.

      • Hi Mark,

        I’ve been trying to figure out that car wash boom, too. There are three of them along a less than two-mile strip – Electric Road, outside of Roanoke.

        • The boom was all due to easy money, it’s in everything: housing, commercial real estate, autos, heavy equipment, etc…

          Ben Jones does a good job on his housing blog (URL above) of pointing out how it inflated & how it’s falling apart, and then there’s this macro summary:

          ‘Credit Crunch: The Money Supply Has Shrunk For Eight Months In a Row’

          …” money-supply contraction is the largest we’ve seen since the Great Depression. […]

          These factors all point toward a bubble that is in the process of popping. The situation is unsustainable,”…

          https://mises.org/wire/credit-crunch-money-supply-has-shrunk-eight-months-row

            • There are many variables and it’s hard to know all of them, but it appears that people don’t want to give up their current low interest mortgages only to have to buy in a high interest environment. I think that may be why there is low inventory right now. With that said, a shrinking money supply will necessarily cause downward pressure on home prices. I think there will ultimately be a combination of things that cause more equilibrium to the real estate market: rising inflation, which increases incomes over time, and falling prices. I think these things will take some time to sort out though.

              But then again, what the hell do I know about predicting the future? It does appear that current real estate affordability (incomes v. prices) is unsustainable. Something has to give eventually.

              • ML – “With that said, a shrinking money supply will necessarily cause downward pressure on home prices.”

                The Mises article says the money supply has been shrinking since April 2022, albeit only coming off about 15% from all time highs. Per the ZH piece, home prices are still rising in August 2023.

                I also think the Mises article traditional boom bust analysis relies a lot on loan activity being high in the boom and low in the bust. In this higher rate environment, loan activity is low but prices remain high, so I don’t see the same outcomes coming to pass.

                I’ve been a bear on stocks and RE for a long time based on my understanding of traditional Austrian analysis and overconsumption of doom porn. I’ve also previously been in the “the Fed can’t raise rates or we’ll have a recession camp.” And I’ve been all kinds of wrong. Fortunately, I deal in theory only and haven’t lost my shirt betting against the house.

                So, I’m not normally a “it’s different this time” kinda person but I have come to believe the past almost 20 years of extreme rate repression combined with unprecedented growth in the money supply in ’20-21 (as you know the numbers are staggering) will have some kind of unintended consequences, this supply/demand imbalance being one. Ironically, my theory is that the money supply growth, which would take decades to work down in due course without a conflagration has set a floor on inflationary price increases and the Fed raising rates even more might exacerbate the supply shortage, maintaining high prices and probably driving prices even higher. Furthermore, I don’t believe in the Fed or that it exists to control inflation or promote full employment. It is designed to create inflation, period.

                • I tend to agree with you, but I still think a correction will happen with income rising to meet home prices, home prices falling to meet income or a combination of the two. It just takes time and there was an unprecedented printing of money in 2020.

                  Consider this, in the last downturn, the housing market began to falter in 2006, but prices continued to rise through about 2008. It then took until 2012-2014 for homes prices to hit bottom. I believe prices in the west and southwest have begun falling so far.

                  Again, this is all just crystal ball gazing. If I knew what the future holds I still wouldn’t be filthy rich because timing is just so critical. If you’re right on the events but your timing is off by 6 months or a year, you could still lose your shirt.

                  • The 06-08 comparison just isn’t applicable today. I lived through it (bought my first house in 01) and IMHO, today’s circumstances just bear no resemblance to those days. None. For one, RE loan creation was off the charts. No docs, NINJAS, 110% financing. Try that today at 7.5%. Then, in 08, there was a follow on financial crisis from all that securitized RE loan crap cratering on a minor rate hike. RE loan creation has been a tiny fraction of that the past 3-4 years.

                    What got hit this time when rates went up and existing bonds fell in price? Gov’t securities. Treasuries. What did they do when the Bankman Fried shop blew up? Told the banks to mark them hold to maturity at par rather than mark to market. Voila, money good, financial crisis averted. I’m not saying it’s right, it’s f’n evil, crime really, a subversion of contracts, but it happened. Full faith and credit, ya know. Stonks at ATHs.

                    Also, at the risk of being repetitive, the money supply didn’t balloon the same way driving up the intrinsic value of land, wood, metal, etc.

                • Indeed, inflation is the very purpose of fiat currency. There is no other reason to use it.
                  “Money” can be printed, wealth cannot be.

            • Some titles & bits from just this month:

              ‘No One Wants To Be The First To Blink And Drop Their Price, But Eventually Most Will’

              [Commercial real estate:] ‘Just The Beginning Of A Price War’

              ‘Brokers Said They Had Begun To Offload Non-Performing Assets For Underwater Owners’

              “… in California. “Bay Area cities have experienced some of the biggest drops in home prices across the country,”…

              ‘A Sharp Reversal Of Fortune After An Era Of Cheap Money Ended’

              “…Home prices also fell by double-digit percentages in central Mesa, Phoenix and Scottsdale. Glendale, Sun City and Carefree, as well as other parts of Phoenix and Mesa, saw single-digit home price declines during the second quarter. Paradise Valley, Maricopa County’s most expensive region, saw median prices drop about 5%.” […]
              in Pennsylvania. “A freeze has descended upon real estate development in Philadelphia”…

              ‘The Story Is That Demand Is Just Gone, Those Investors Made Losses On Their Properties’

              …”As demand falls and interest rates remain high, those investors are trying to reduce their presence in the market, which has helped to bring prices back down.”…

              ‘Homes For Sale With Prices That Have Taken A Real Nosedive Lately’

              …“Utah’s housing prices are still down compared to last year. […]

              The reason new homes aren’t being built in much of the Midwest is because a new home cannot sell for the cost of construction. This isn’t an abstract problem. There are more than a million homes in Indiana alone that’d be worth more disassembled and stacked on a rail car than they are currently assembled in the towns in which they’re located.”…

              ‘When You Go Up, Up, Up, There’s Nowhere To Go But Down’

              …”A person familiar with multifamily syndicators put it thus: ‘It’s [like] when you mortgage all your properties in Monopoly — you’re done.’”…

              [Reminds me of all the cars washes]

              ‘We Are Paying The Price For The Property Bubble’

              “…What many people don’t realize is just because a person has equity in their home, it doesn’t necessarily mean they can make the payment on it.’”…

              http://housingbubble.blog/

              • That blog you promote relentlessly is doom porn. A broken clock is right twice a day, too. The title alone. Gonna get some unbiased analysis for sure. Do you have anything to say about the title to the ZH article? Did you read it? Lotta data in there. Seems 180 degree opposite to bubble blog to me. Somebody’s wrong here…

                Just one example of dissonance. Arizona counties show a 5% drop yoy. Wow, talk about bubbles popping. LOL. Per the Mises article you posted, the money supply is down 15% since April 22. Seems like prices are fighting that trend to the tune of 10%. Pretty resilient.

            • I don’t see the housing market plunging and the reason why is there is little to no inventory.

              First, most people are not going to leave their 3% mortgage rates to trade up for a 7.5% mortgage rate, unless absolutely necessary (e.g., divorce, job transfer, needing to be closer to family, etc.)

              Secondly, there is no labor force to build new homes. Add that to the supply chain disruptions and the number of people coming across the Southern Border who need somewhere to stay, and I see years of stability when it comes to any home price fluctuation.

              Third, is inflation. The dollar buys less so costs will continue to rise (and that includes rent/housing).

              I read an article the other day (and I cannot remember who published it), but it actually stated that between now and COVID 1/3 of the working economy left the job force. One third! That is crazy if it is accurate. It sure feels like it though.

              The constant toiling away is starting to lead to burnout. I see it around me in every industry. God help us if the last of the worker bees fall.

              I don’t know how this country picks itself up from its boot strings. We can’t have 40% producing for the other 60%. It isn’t going to last.

              • I’ve seen some explain the low inventory by the fact that there are millions of airbnbs. The claim is that airbnb rentals are down significantly and in relatively short order these will start flooding the market and inventory will rise.

                “It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” -Yogi Berra

                • The premise of Airbnb is you are renting a room or two in someone’s house. That’s not to say some Airbnb’s aren’t whole house rentals, some are, but it’s a smaller %. I would be surprised if so many of them were so dependent on that rental income that a fire sale would occur without full occupancy, thus depressing home prices overall.

                  Like a lot of things, domestic short term rentals have come off a bit off all time highs. But it’s still a damn good business. My family rents a whole home property through VRBO (provided reading materials include Ron Paul’s Liberty Defined, hehe) and 23 is not very far off 22 or 21, which were record years.

              • There is no supply. However, regarding new homes, there are no less than 5 new houses being built near me in Eastern NC in a 2 block radius. This compares to maybe 1-2 total in a 10 block radius for the 7 years I’ve been here. One building outfit is out of Alaska. Mostly Mexicans doing the work but I’ve even seen a stick built modular brought in on flat beds and put together with a crane. They haven’t done that around here since the 80s when it was common. I don’t expect this to depress prices, though.

                • Ugh, housing prices are insane here in Alaska. And rental prices are even worse, because greedy renters know they can ask for whatever they want, due to the military that cycle through here. Renters know those folks get a housing stipend (if they are not on base housing), so it drives up the cost for renters everywhere. I have looked at homes, and you cannot find anything decent, with a garage for under $300,000. And like Raider Girl was saying, now that interest rates have risen, some who would like to move out of their smaller house into a bigger one are stuck, because they do not want to leave their smaller rate-mortgage. And I cannot say I blame them. A new, 130 acre lot place was just opened. People buy lots, and then build. They will sell, I imagine, and bring more traffic to that particular road. Except that construction prices have greatly increased, so there is that. It will be interesting, though, to see how long it takes for those lots to sell, with the increased prices, and the economy…

    • Thanks for the local intelligence reports all. In 2021/2022 a bunch of hemp places popped up all at the same time too. It just seems artificial to me. Like the insiders know something we don’t.

      Helot, for now, the subscription seems to be an option, and individual purchases can still be done. But if you wash your car more than twice a month, it is a better deal to get the subscription.

  4. I came of age in the Soviet era, under communism in Poland. Man oh man do I remember Trabants, they were total garbage, but it’s the only garbage the common man could get. You’d sign up on a wait list, and maybe ten years later, it would be your turn to have a Trabant. My father got one after waiting about ten years, but the battery was dead, and the wait list for a battery was something like three or four years. So, he snuck into the local communist party parking lot one night, and swapped batteries with some apparatchik’s Trabi. Party memebers and government officials didn’t have to wait for anything.

    You are absolutely right, Eric. People, generally, did not believe the rhetoric coming from the totalitarian commies running our countries. They did fear them, though, and did what they were told out of fear. Some people even believed, because it was easier for some to accept this system than to be constantly disappointed and fight against it. Your neighbors could be secret police, so friendships formed slowly, but once you sussed out whether you could trust people, the friendships that survived were strong.

    People in the US really have no concept of how different life is under totalitarianism. It’s not that you have access to fewer things, or that some delusional leaders are screaming from on high. Everybody around you could be an agent of the state, anything you do, no matter how innocent, can be twisted against you. You live your life in suspicion and fear.

    I want to scream sometimes, because I’ve recounted my experiences to American friends and colleagues, and some of them are infatuated with the communist days, saying things like “but you had free health care, free college”. Ugh!

    People celebrate diminishment when there are no real achievements anymore. We’re heading in that direction.

    • We’re getting a taste of it online, especially in the gaming community. There are people who don’t think twice about doxxing, swatting and otherwise trying to ruin the reputations of people they disagree with. There’s tasit approval of this behavior by the ruling classes because it suits their agenda -a modern take on the Stasi.

      We’ve seen what happens to societies where the state (man) is the ultimate moral arbiter. Without a higher moral authority, whether it be ancestors, philosophers or an old guy in the clouds with stone tablets, the psychopaths take the high ground.

    • In 2010 I asked my best friend about how the Nazi, communists, and other totalitarians were allowed in power. In a matter-of-fact way he just said that people do not want to disrupt their routines: sports, Dancing with the Stars. I had a negotiations class in grad school where the professor made a stunning statement that authoritarians govern with the consent of the governed.

      • This is an interesting statement.

        Your friend is right and wrong. In my home country, the Nazis killed off a lot of the population, the Soviets kicked them out, and installed themselves as our heroes and saviors, and instituted a new government, at the point of a gun. So, once the war is over, you have a country where 6 million (out of about 30) were dead and the country is in rubble. Families are grieving, and everyone has much bigger problems than the Soviets, such as getting food and water. That’s how communism came to my country, not via the consent of the governed.

        Over the years afterward, people just kept their heads down, but the authorities became more oppressive, to the point where the consent was withdrawn in 1989, when the communist government collapsed. In the 45 years of communism, many people were killed for resisting, many others were “re-educated” in Siberia, and slowly pushed people’s acceptance to the breaking point.

        You are right, most people want to be left alone and to live their lives in peace, but this isn’t because they’re distracted by sports or dancing with the stars, that’s just an extreme example. Most just don’t want to have to fight every day of their lives, so they tolerate the government.

        • Let me add to my previous statement…

          I’m simply appalled that Americans are willing to throw away what they’ve got in the name of some elitist ideology.

          The default state of mankind is poverty and starvation. Everything we have, from energy to clean water, to computers and socialist books, comes from the work of human hands, but more importantly, from the compounding effects of economic prosperity.

          It’s clear that the US still has a lot of economic inertia, but our idiotic leaders and their unthinking supporters are drawing on wealth created in the past. It’s not going to last forever, and they’re oblivious to the fact that they’re harming their kids and grandkids.

        • ‘Most just don’t want to have to fight every day of their lives, so they tolerate the government.’ — OppositeLock

          Exactly. Back in apartheid days, I picked up a black hitchhiker on the road from Durban to Johannesburg. I asked him how he felt about the pass laws that applied to blacks, expecting a radicalized answer.

          He was surprised by the question. To him, the pass laws were just part of the normal background noise. He had never experienced anything different.

          For people just barely getting along, I realized, it takes really extreme provocation to rouse them to openly resisting the ruling regime.

    • People here in general are idiots. The ability to think and rationalize has been driven out of “education” many years ago and now we have a population of sheep. When I was a teen back in the early 80’s, I met a man who escaped from Bulgaria in the early 60’s and came to America. He found a job at Voice of America radio and freedom (when we actually had such a thing). He would talk about the oppression in his home country and that I should appreciate what we have here and not take it for granted. Too bad others here couldn’t have that kind of influence from those who lived it.

    • The problem is, Lock, is that these stupid fools do not realize how costly “free” is, because they have enjoyed the fruits of capitalism their whole lives. It is why they are so willing to give it up, the dumb fools. They truly have no clue…and are worse than stupid, as even animals figure out a lesson the first time around if it does not kill them.

      • Some people benefit from the current system, though. Whether financially or status & station or a mixture of all three. Or some other way, as simple as a vicarious thrill in diminishing others. Enough that pushback you receive for being opposed to it might be genuine rather than some theoretical or ideological belief or support. What’s the quote, “it’s difficult to get a man to know something when his paycheck depends on not knowing it.” I surmise this was true to some degree or other in the communist societies you and OL reference. That’s the part of the history lesson I wasn’t told about communism.

        • There is only so much that a history book can teach you about Communism. Reading about it is one thing. Living it is entirely another, although I would not call it living. Surviving it, maybe, and learning survival skills, and ways to communicate in various ways-while not saying anything (if that makes sense) learn to become a way of life. And even if a man knows the Communist system is wrong, he will often not fight against it, knowing that the price (he and his children & wife) will pay a heavy price for it. The government knows this, so the system thrives and continues.

          • My point was that you need to contemplate that some folks not only don’t think it (call it communism or “the system”) is wrong but actually think it’s right. There are people like this here today, maybe more than you think, and I would guess there were at least some in the communist societies of the past. That’s what I wasn’t told and had to figure out on my own. The renamed flu scam really brought this out.

            • True, and there again, you have people like AOC think that because THEY are trying it, it will somehow work this time. Never mind the basic tenants are the same, and therefore, it will still fail. And not because they are somehow smarter than those in times past. But also, they do not see Communism as slavery, either, which is sad. It is just that I do not want to be dragged down to their level, and some are hell bent on doing just that.

    • Amen Oppositelock –

      I remember those Trabants, too. I was serving in the U.S. Army in what was then West Germany in a town called Hanau, east of Frankfurt, in 1989 when the Berlin Wall came down. Almost overnight East Germans and, interestingly, a lot of Turkish people suddenly flooded the streets in those things. Man were those cars small! Noisy and smelly, too. I remember thinking how sad it was that that car was probably all the Soviet Bloc people could afford to buy for wheels. I don’t believe the people in the western German cities were happy having to dodge those things in their BMWs, Opels, Volkswagens, and Mercedes.

  5. New York Slimes catapults the EeeVee agitprop:

    ‘GM said Tuesday that it planned to equip all its electric cars and trucks with the capability to act as backup power supplies during blackouts.

    ‘The technology will begin appearing in vehicles this year, including an electric Silverado pickup and an electric Cadillac Escalade, to be unveiled Wednesday. By 2026, all GM electric vehicles will have vehicle-to-home technology.

    ‘That will include a new version of the Chevrolet Bolt. GM planned to discontinue the compact car, but reversed the decision last month after complaints about the disappearance of one of the most affordable electric vehicles.

    ‘Vehicles able to keep the lights on and refrigerator running during a power outage could be appealing as blackouts become more frequent and longer because of extreme weather caused by climate change. The average duration of power outages doubled from 2015 to 2021, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.’

    https://archive.ph/r5cvA#selection-501.0-517.1

    Anyone with three functioning brain cells will grok that an EeeVee which charges itself from a blackout-prone electric grid is a bad idea.

    But it gets even worse: using an EeeVee to power your house, instead of an ICE generator, leaves you stranded if the blackout goes on too long.

    AND — this is just the camel’s nose under the tent for EeeVees getting sucked dry under the utility’s control, not the owner’s control … as admitted toward the bottom of the article. That’s the real purpose of this tech: to offload the cost of augmenting the grid onto hapless EeeVee buyers.

    Special kudos to the soyboy Slimes stenographer for working in a spurious reference to cliiiiiiiiimate change.

    • I have lost power twice in the last two months (due to weather). The only reason we did not lose all our frozen and refrigerated food was because I purchased an inverter that I can connect to the car battery and run the car to keep power going. The car was a life saver. When it ran low on gas I drove to an open gas station a few miles away and filled up. It’s comical that they are saying you can use an EV for this purpose. You would have to have a fully charged EV on hand when the power went out and when it ran down you would be done. And stranded. The irony is that an ICE has an almost limitless ability to produce electricity, while the EV is nothing but a battery that’s always losing electricity.

      • I’ve been losing power a lot this winter in the middle of silicon valley. I anticipated this coming, so I have a Tesla PowerWall. Turns out, it’s not much use when the sun isn’t shining, because a single one (13kWh) is only enough to power a fridge and some lights for maybe 24 hours if you economize. It relies on solar panels to recharge it during the day.

        My solution? I bought a gas generator, hooked this into dual bridge rectifiers, each powering a grid-tie solar inverter, which plugs into my dryer outlet in the garage and pushes power into the powerwall. It thinks it’s charging from solar (charging from grid isn’t allowed) and it allows me to run a generator 4-6 hours during the day to put enough power into it so it never runs out of power. It was a life saver since I went 3 weeks without power and not enough sunshine to power my usage.

        • I wonder what brand/rating genny did ya get.

          &, do you have a special enclosure of some type to protect it from rain? …That’s, something on my to-do list.

          • I just got a portable 2500W Generac. I put it under an awning if it rains. This is enough to dump 2000W into my house after conversion losses. Since I have a power wall, it just stores it all, and it can provide 7000W when needed, so I don’t need a bigger genny.

        • And be glad you have a generator, to, OL. That is one thing the Biden regime is looking at banning. In addition to just about everything else. For the earth, of course….

  6. From a very early age,,, pre toddler,,, We are in ‘school’. Everything we do or think is in groups. There is no individuality. Same in Primary ‘school’ where you are bombarded with “do as you are told”. When in college you are programmed day in and day out “believe government,,, believe the academics’,,, believe in groups. Do not associate with any individual that does not comply with group think. Individual thought is dangerous and leads to anarchy (gov definition).

    Together they conjure up a self regulating and self flagellating person that allows the group to do the thinking. Government controls the groups and that is how it manipulates the unthinking empty minded masses.

    Example: The Green RV Trailer where onboard battery drive system allows the EV towing it longer range.

    Of course it will,,, adding battery’s to any EV will extend the range but what they fail to mention is it also doubles the charge time as you now have to charge the appliance and trailer. More weight on the road and faster tire wear. And who in hell could sleep in one of these incinerators?

    The site name is Green Car Reports. Another bit of programming for the NPC.

    https://www.greencarreports.com/news/1133124_towing-with-an-ev-are-electric-trailers-the-future

    • Ken, your comment, for some reason, reminded me of the drills they had in school. Back during the cold war with the Soviet Union. Where kids would get under their desks in case of a nuclear war. Just as those flimsy desk does not save a kid (or the teacher) from anything in such an event, we are repeating history, and no EV is going to save us, either, from whatever environmental calamity of the day the Feds or EPA or tree huggers are screaming is coming.

  7. It’s all a psyop to make everyone feel guilty for enjoying their life, definitely around here a legacy of the Puritans. They want us to wear sackcloth and ashes for the sins of using the resources of Gaia, which should be left to the elites. I regularly get letters from the gas company trying to shame me for using more gas than my “efficient” neighbors. Well ts guys, I have an old house with high ceilings and I’ve insulated as much as possible but I like to be comfortable in my retirement, so f**k off. I’m sure rationing is coming, no “smart” gas meters yet but I’m sure they’re working on it; exceed your weekly allotment and it shuts off – no gas for you!

    • “ I’ve insulated as much as possible but I like to be comfortable in my retirement “

      Exactly my thoughts and my way of retirement living. Also, during the Carter years, there were announcements on TV warning old folks to stay warm, and not turn the heat too low. Oldsters were dying of slow/long onset hypothermia they didn’t realize the slow loss of body heat thus one day no waking from that afternoon nap.

      Never below 72 in the winter, never above 76 in the summer (thanks Dave Lennox!)
      I also get the pronouncements from Puget Sound Energy I’m using way above the neighborhood average and should schedule an ‘energy audit’. The only audit is my own, the wife and I comfortable – OK audit complete.

  8. From Wikipedia:

    ‘Manufactured by a state monopoly, a Trabant took about ten years to acquire. The waiting time depended on their proximity to Berlin, the capital. Official state price was 7,450 GDR marks and the demand to production ratio was forty three to one (1989). The free market price for a second-hand one was more than twice the price of a new one.’

    Before sneering at the ridiculousness of East Germany’s auto monopoly, recall that monopoly telephone companies were the rule everywhere until AT&T was busted up in 1984. In western Europe, the waiting list to install a new landline could extend for years.

    In the US, electric utilities are regulated monopolies. Naturally, they love the idea of forcing consumers to obtain all their energy from one cable — no ICE vehicles, no gas stoves, no wood stoves, etc. Just total dependence on an unresponsive monopoly.

    EeeVees are part of a Sovietization campaign, to construct a rigid economy with state-sponsored key players and suppressed competition. Europe’s version has been called Eurosclerosis since the 1980s, featuring low-growth, highly-indebted, chronic-unemployment economies.

    In the US, DemonRats and RINOs are pushing the Eurosclerosis model, but modified with a gigantic, parasitic military sector that sucks up 4% of GDP, yet loses every war it instigates. This defective economic model is BORN TO FAIL.

  9. While the Feds and the auto makers are forcing EVs on the masses, I find it ironic that GM awhile back announced a new facility to build its next generation V-8 engine. Are these new engines for government use only?? We all know what is mandated for the masses does not apply to the elite and government, but then I repeat myself.

    • Those V8s are for the ZILs that ferry around our Dear Leaders, the Chaikas that ferry around apparatchiks, and the Volgas that the KGB, MVD, and Militsiya need to keep us proletarians in check.

  10. Eric- “Try to imagine people defending Betamax against the VCR – when it had become obvious that the VCR was the superior product.”

    Both VHS and Betamax are differing formats for Video Cassette Recorders (VCR). Betamax had better image quality and were used for a long time by TV stations for recording. Sony also to my knowledge did not license Betamax to other manufactures while JVC did for their VHS format. VHS allowed 6 hours instead of 2 hours and that’s what won out in the end.

    Trabants are East German cars as is the Wartburg. The Soviet Union had lots of car companies; some of which are still around but for the average Ivan you wound up with a small economy car with no power options and a manual transmission which you waited years for.

    Of course an AvtoVAZ or GAZ would survive in harsh conditions much better than a Tesla.

    Rant Off. As for the article; it’s all true. Pay a lot more money to get a lot less reliability, usability, practicality and the added bonus of burning your house down if you hit a pothole or curb!!!!

    Maybe it’s time to look at building fireproof garages with chargers built into them detached from your home with atmospheric containment and filtration to save the planet from burning EVs?

  11. There have been efforts to defend the COVID jabs, with some even claiming that natural immunity acquired via recovery from a prior infection was INFERIOR to “vaccine immunity”. However, there were studies showing that natural immunity was actually superior, and yet, these corrupt public health bureaucrats are likely to push MORE VACCINES. Why, for a while, natural immunity was even smeared as CONSPIRACY THEORY concocted by QAnon types, Right Wingers, and Anti-vaxxers.

    As for the current electric vehicle mania, what excuses will the “world improvers” concoct for the increasingly obvious problems with EVs?

    • Natural immunity trumps vaccine “immunity” ever time. And another problem is starting to emerge. Love them or hate them, the fact is, most adults in the Boomer generation contracted all the childhood diseases….measles, mumps, chicken pox, etc. Boomer mothers then passed on that natural immunity to their X’er children. There were not many childhood vaccines for the X’ers….just the MMR from what I remember. Maybe someone can correct me on that one. But now, you have the Millennials and the Z generation that are getting upwards of 69 doses of vaccines before they graduate high school. None of those women will pass on any natural immunity to their offspring, because they were all jabbed. It is down right dangerous for one of them to contract something like chicken pox as an adult: Something that is not as dangerous when you are a child. The vaccine cycle is endless, and I cannot help but wonder if it was not intentional. I remember asking an old timer nurse if someone vaccinated against chicken pox could still be at risk for getting shingles later in life. Come to find out, they were. So much for the jab…they were better off itching and scratching for a week, and having the natural immunity, rather than getting the “vaccine”.

      • Hi Shadow,

        Now some of the pharmaceutical companies are running ads for RSV vaccines targeted at seniors, claiming that RSV can be DANGEROUS to seniors. They even claim that their RSV vaccines are……”FDA approved”.

        • Considering that the FDA thinks that Aspartame and Fluoride are perfectly healthy, I take “FDA Approval” with a grain of salt. And anymore these days, if they approve it, it is just one more reason to avoid it.

          • Morning, Shadow!

            I agree. The regulatory agencies of the federal apparat are so obviously corrupt that to trust them is akin to trusting the shadiest of used car salesmen … one with a gun pointed at you.

          • Hi Shadow,

            Agreed. Just the past few years is proof that the FDA, as well as the CDC, are corrupt. The FDA even approved an Alzheimer’s drug called Aduhelm 2 years ago, which appears to not only not be an effective drug for people who have Alzheimer’s, it also has its own problems for people who take it.

      • Hi Shadow,

        There may well be something to this. I’m Gen X – and based on my experiences – sickness was uncommon when I was a kid. I can’t recall more than a small number of kids in my age cohort who had allergies, for instance. None who were autistic. We ate everything; played in dirt. None of us were fat. Even the handful of “fat” kids were merely chubby by today’s grotesque standards.

        • I read your comment, Eric, and it does make me sad for what we have lost, and for where we are headed in the very close future. Having to be in “condition orange” (and even condition red) just walking through the parking lot of the grocery store was once unheard of in the past. It reminded me of this song you posted awhile back, which I have re-posted for you once, but hey, you cannot beat an oldie. If it were not so damned smoky right now (lighting caused fires), listening to such a song would make ya want to pack a bag and hop in the car (not an EV) and take a road trip to nowhere in particular, just because you could…. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V5YOhcAof8I

      • As a leading edge boomer (b1947) I had all of those diseases, chicken pox, measles, mumps, whatever. The parents in the neighborhood would bring their kids to whoever had chicken pox so they could get it and be done with it. My dad never had chicken pox as a child so when my sister got it he got pretty sick, but other than that we all survived. The only “vaccines” I can recall getting were smallpox, polio (sugar cube), and tetanus. Didn’t know anyone who was autistic back then; the number of “vaccines” given to kids nowadays is nothing short of child abuse.

        • Indeed, Mike, and I shudder what is going to happen to these children when they start getting the regular COVID jabs (along with their yearly flu shots, of which I never got, either), now that those are on “the list”, as well. What is the regular, yearly dose (after their primary series, and if they survive that) of messenger RNA and spike protein going to do them for eighteen years? Also, remember no kid ever had peanut allergies until after the vaccines? Due, in part, to the peanut oil they put in the vials. The stats are that 1 in 35 have autism, and that is suppose to get up to 1 in 2 by the year 2050. All those autistic adults who are not high functioning will have to be cared for somewhere? It is a sobering thought.

  12. VHS won because it was developed after Beta. Sony saw the 3/4 inch uMatic cassette and the old 1/2 inch reel to reel machines and figured out how to get color on a 1/2 inch tape, in a small cartridge the size of a paperback book. An engineering tour de force, but not practical for two hour films.

    National (Panasonic/JVC/Victor) saw Sony’s work and made it better. Iterative engineering, perhaps driven from feeling slighted by Sony after they worked together on uMatic.

    They both got sued for copyright infringement by allowing recording of off-air television for the purposes of time shifting. TV executives apparently like to control people’s lives.

    Your point is correct in that the marketplace made both products better. Sony had to up their game to match VHS features, and VHS had to improve their engineering to improve their inferior quality. In the end they both had very good products but VHS had the market share.

    And tape was replaced by digital discs – DVDs for movies, DVRs for off air. Moore’s Law infiltrated the movies.

    Now everything is streaming and no one owns anything. Except the studios, who won’t let you watch anything unless you pay for the whole buffet, all or nothing. Will this be how all transportation evolves? Will “ride share” services only take you to certain destinations, requiring multiple monthly subscriptions just to get through your life? Frontier Airlines has its “Go Wild” all you can fly pass, where for $300 you can fly (standby) anywhere, anytime all winter long. Might make sense if you live near Denver International and can just hop on a flight at the last minute. I could see how if enough people decide to Go Wild, the airline would adapt and change it to be the normal way to sell tickets, betting that after an initial surge, most people wouldn’t actually fly any more than they do today, but because they’re paying the subscription fee they’re going to fly Frontier instead of United. Transportation as a service.

    https://www.flyfrontier.com/deals/gowild-pass/

  13. “I’ll plug in when I get home and my EV will be ready to drive in the morning! ”

    So, when all cars are mandated to be electric 80-90% will expect to plug in overnight. No solar at night. Only wind…sometimes.

    My math tells me to covert ICE to electric will require a minimum of doubling the entire current capacity of our electrical output and distribution by 2035. We have currently 1.1MM Megawatts of power generation and 600,000 miles of distribution. At $5-8MM + a Megawatt to build a new gas turbine, and $2MM per mile for HV distribution you do the math on the trillions required to more than double the grid. Also, this took almost 100 years to build. To get this done in 12 years will require every living soul in the USA to become power lineman, turbine plant construction workers, turbine and transformer builders, etc. Our entire economy on a mass scale dedicated to one thing…making Buttaleg feel good about himself.

    One small step for man.

  14. You forgot “I’ll save so much money on gas owning an EV.”

    Around Central Texas, due to lingering memories of a brief gas “shortage” which the radio stations created over Labor Day Weekend following one hurricane in 2017, you’ll also hear the rationalization, “I won’t be stuck at home without gas after a hurricane.”

    • No, but you will be stuck at home without power for a lot longer 😆.
      One thing I never got was why during extended power outages the gas stations don’t use portable generators to power their pumps. Doesn’t take much power to run a small pump and they certainly don’t have to worry about running out of gas for the generator.

      • Generators cost money, and actually selling gas is a very low margin business.

        In Florida, some gas stations would have back up generators for use after hurricanes, but then the state passed an “anti gouging” law which negated the ability of the station owners to recoup the costs of continuing to provide service in the wake of storms.

  15. An elderly woman from Russia moved to my hometown, plenty of Russians in town, friends and neighbors, she got here. When she walked into a grocery store, she turned around and walked out. It was glaringly apparent she had been duped into believing she had to go without. Didn’t sit well, a traumatic stress for her. She knew she had been lied to and used, abused, been wronged.

    The Russian woman wasn’t celebrating diminishment.

    History knows where it is all going, to hell in a handbasket, there now, it seems.

    Words like ‘voluntary adversity’ are used to describe how people learn to go without, coercion is a word that works too.

    They avoid too much, a plethora of cornucopias and all they want is the pits of olives and cherries. They do it to themselves.

    Probably is contrary to nature itself. A grizzly bear doesn’t avoid eating all summer long and then hibernates all winter. They eat as much as they can of salmon, berries, and make sure their stomachs are full. They have to, their girth and size demands it. You have to bearproof your campsite, you know that before it’s too late.

    Elephants eat some 600 pounds of vegetation per day, elephants don’t go hungry in the jungle. Elephants don’t fast, they know they have to eat. Instincts dictate what they do, they have to remain alive, no matter the toils and snares.

    Every morning around 6:00 am, the lions in the zoo would begin to roar. The zoo keeper had to get up in the morning and feed the lions. Another time at the zoo, there was a snow leopard in an outdoor setting, caged, of course, the thing got a bead on me and was ready to attack.

    If a snow leopard gets loose, there’ll be a problem.

    There was a moose at the creek two years ago, they’re big too. They are going to eat.

    The Arab rich cat says he drives a Mercedes, his grandson will drive a camel. The Burj Dubai will have to be abandoned, can’t be maintained. Fun while it lasted.

    Anyhow, it is all Father Abraham’s fault, Sarah drove him to Hagar, Ishmael and Isaac got to be friends, Ishmael was cast out, now those guys are everywhere these days.

    There are camel races on Sunday in Berwick, double-humpers under the lights. Always a way to have some fun and then some.

    You won’t be driving an EV or an ICE, those days are in the past already.

    You’ll be feeding a horse and stabling it for safe keeping, you’ll be able to ride where you want to go. 20 miles a day, 60 days, you should be in California by then if you start out in Kansas City. Make sure the horse is fed an apple a day, has to rest for a few hours, kind of like an EV, needs to re-fuel and rest for a few hours before being rode again.

    If they’ll let you own a horse, don’t hold your breath.

    You want four wheels and a motor with a car body attached to it? Obsolete, a thing of the past. You just think you want one, when you’ll be better off without.

    What you’ll be doing in your 15, maybe down to a 12 minute city, where involuntary adversity will no doubt exist, is hoping for a way out. Not much more will matter, just get me out of here. Somehow, someway.

    No coffee, no beer, no real food, just water and bugs, you’ll be happy as a clam.

    As far as any of it goes, too bad.

    Plus, even if you want any kind of transportation, EV, ICE, bicycle, horse, burro, mule, camels, makes no difference, you can’t have any of them, so go away. Where do you think you are? Mongolia?

    No choice, that’s the way it is going to be. Walking is good exercise.

    Land to water to sky to space, then to the Moon, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Pluto, deep space missions. Hundreds of satellites, thousands of airplanes, railroads, highways, off limits now. It’s a travesty of a mockery of a sham.

    What do you get? What you deserve. Bugs for you, steak for me says Klaus.

    Something is not right, indoctrinating people to go without isn’t going to work, eventually, they find out they’ve been fooled, taken advantage of.

    Not a pretty picture these days.

    Can’t even have any ice cream, Nancy and Joe bought it all.

    • The same thing happened in this neck of the woods, Drumpish. An elderly Russian man walked into the Fred Meyer grocery store. Immediately in front if him was the produce section. Only in his case, he had to sit down in a chair at the deli (near the produce section) and cry…while repeatedly saying, “…they lied to me”. He was okay with thinking Capitalism was terrible, and that Communism was great, because he knew nothing else. It was not until he saw for himself, that he realized he had been lied to. It is sad to think that this country is voluntarily putting on the yokes of slavery, thinking they are getting everything for free, not realizing the price they are going to pay for it. And when they figure it out (too late), they will blame the rest of us for it. Their immense pride will never let them admit (as I have said before) they were wrong. They will have to scapegoat someone else for their own stupidity and ignorance.

    • I heard a similar story from Dan Bongino about Cuba. But on YouTube you can see Russian stores today and they are stocked like we were in the past. Just another thing that makes you say Hmnn.

      Embrace socialism and get communism. We’re going to find this out I fear.

  16. “[T]he old Soviet Union, where central planners planned everything.”

    Most people don’t understand the Politician andBureaucrat Mindset. It’s one of monumental arrogance that the ideas they have are always right and any failing of those ideas is the fault of others not embracing their superior concepts and intellect.

    This is not new.

    Nearly 30 years ago now, I was on the local Planning & Zoning Board. I thought, as a Libertarian, I could change the system from within. (Ah, the folly of youth) I attended a regional meeting of board members that was put on by the UNC School of Government. (https://www.sog.unc.edu/about) The guy who opened the festivities began the meeting with this, “The essence of planning and zoning in North Carolina is, ‘That which is not permitted is prohibited’.”

    What sort of delusions of god-hood must one have to conjure such a thought? This was pre-internet. The i-phone was just a vision in the head of Steve Jobs. Yet, this man was declaring that he knew ALL of existence and how it should be “planned”.

    I would submit that the experiment of Government has been an abject failure wherever it has been tried. I give you the United States as Exhibit “A”. A nation founded on the notion that government should be limited to defending the God-given Rights of individuals has grown to be the most monstrous government entity in the existence of humanity.

    As a civilized people we need to find a way to deal with sociopaths to prevent them from harming our lives and livelihoods, not offer them permanent government employment.

    • Sane moral people are not attracted to government and its assumption of authority to kill you if you disobey. Socio/psychopaths are. It’s their ideal environment.

    • Most people can only see the downside risk of the future, never the upside. A bird in hand beats two in the bush. That’s not entirely wrong, consider that 90% of startups fail. Although I was recently told that the only reason startups fail is because the founders give up, FWIW. Keep your day job, stay in your wheelhouse, and just keep your head down. That’s the way to get by in the world. Assume everything is (was) perfection on a stick right now and any change agent is working against society. Besides what’s in it for you if you say yes? You, as a bureaucrat, see no direct benefit from change. In fact you’ll likely get a lot of backlash from people complaining, and more paperwork to process. “No” stops all that in its tracks.

      • Startups fail because of the barriers to entry, mainly from government. The long permitting process, the tax forms, forms for this and that. Believe it or not, in a communist economy in far eastern countries, it’s easier to go into business yourself. People there go into business to survive. If they have a good idea, it takes off. Not here. Apply here, fill in the franchise tax form, get the permit from the health department, the labor department. Minimim wage.

        All that crap. This country is not some bastion of freedom. It’s a hamstrung nag of a place. Land of small, limited government? Nonsense. We have local, state, and federal bureaucracies to deal with. In Texas, you have extremely high property taxes and a whole lot of corporate crowding out. It makes rent nearly impossible to pay even before you make the first dime.

        People don’t take into account the costs of doing business. They fail. That’s life.

        • It’s been around a long time, so it has a large collective memory. Some places are better than others, that’s why everyone incorporates in Delaware instead of California. And its human nature to pull up the ladder behind you, just like it’s human to give your children a leg up if you’re able. Using the state as a hammer to beat down competition is a natural desire too. I blame the politicians for bending over when businessmen come crawling around. But then again, the state gets rewarded for doing the dirty work, so maybe it’s concentual…

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