Who Hijacked Our Country

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Detroit Automakers: Another Nail in the Coffin

Talk about being careful what you wish for. Detroit has spent countless millions of dollars lobbying against higher gas mileage standards. And it worked. Those congressional prostitutes always bend over when a lobbyist whips out his wallet.

The Detroit automakers got their wish. And now more and more Americans are buying foreign cars that get better mileage. While Detroit kept wailing “weee caaan’t dooo iiiitt,” Japan, Korea, Sweden and Germany (among others) went and did it.

And now, Americans are not only buying fewer cars from Detroit — they’re buying fewer cars Period.

For decades it’s seemed like there was at least one car for every man, woman and child in America. Say goodbye. With gas prices going up and up every day, more American families are switching to what European families have always done: one car per family.

This sucks for Detroit autoworkers, but these changes are inevitable and long overdue. Funny, the linked article expresses sympathy for investors but doesn’t mention anything about unemployed autoworkers. Ooookay. I’ve never heard of people losing their homes or going on welfare because they made a bad investment decision, but what do I know.

Gas-guzzling vehicles, several cars per family, driving by yourself to work (on your 80-mile commute) — it’s time for all of these American icons to go the way of the stage coach. Gas prices will never ever come down no matter how much drilling we do and how many new refineries get built. The oil companies have seen how much they can get; why the F#!$%# would they ever lower the price?

The first energy crisis was thirty-five years ago. It’s long past time to make the changes we should’ve made then.

The author (Anthony Mirhaydari) ends his article with some solid investment advice: “Try adding some light rail to your portfolio.”

cross-posted at Bring It On!

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Blogger Ricardo said...

I love the families that feel they NEED to get a Chevy Suburban because that's the only way to have room for their kids. What they omit is that each kid is 40 pounds and by the time they are big enough to use that room they are driving their own cars. I knew one family that wanted to go green so they bought lower wattage Christmas lights. but really, if they are serious about going green, GET RID OF THE SUBURBAN!

On American cars, they continuously shoot themselves in the foot and bleed billions each year. When was the last time ford or GM posted a real profit? I don't feel sorry for the top brass but I do feel for the auto workers.

July 9, 2008 at 11:06 PM  
Blogger American Hill BIlly said...


First, thank you for continuing to comment on my site during my absence. I've got a vulgar "dr" somebody that is very misleading. It is funny that you mentioned the detroit dinosaurs. I have been doing investigative journalism the last couple of days. I took pictures of cars that were 2000' and newer models. They were all diesel, and of the detroit dinosaurs. I have around 35 pictures so I am going to start doing them in segments starting tomorrow. I don't know if I am going to start with the 2001 chevy S-10 diesel. The man driving said it got around 43 miles per gallon. He usually has it loaded with cement bags. I might also start off with Kia Motors(korean). I took pictures of a crew cab 4x4 diesel. It is rated at a ton and a half. The man said that he averages 28 to 30 mpg. I wasted two days getting these photos to show the lies in the States!!

Just for you. I posted on that jungle???? site, here is what I posted:

I think your blog sucks! I am turning you into the NAACP currently for defamation of charactor. There are plenty of boys under the age of 8 that the Bush's have been famous in books for raping! They have never sued for defamation of charactor! Why not over something as serious as that? Could it be true?
Also, I dared myself into coming to your vulgar scum hole site that I couldn't give a rat's ass about because of a friend. This is the reason that I am filing currently when done with this a formal complaint with the NAACP, and the ACLU!!! Also, with the defamation of our national symbol how can you people truly not be hypocrits? Have fun in court with this one. Also, I have electronically saved this page; along with this message once posted for proof!

Peace and Freedom

July 10, 2008 at 12:20 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Ricardo: Yeah, it's amazing what people think they need. If people can afford whatever they need or think they need, more power to them. But with food and gas prices going up and up, millions of people are being squeezed and they're gonna eliminate any spending they possibly can.

Restaurants, movies, CDs, a 2nd or 3rd car -- there'll be a lot less spending on all of those things, and a lot of jobs will be lost. It sucks but it's the new reality we'll all have to adjust to. I agree, the top brass at GM and Ford can go fuck themselves, but I feel sorry for their employees.

AHB: That makes sense, that there are Detroit dinosaurs out there that get good mileage. The Powers That Be definitely want the public to be in this hopeless fix, with gas prices going through the roof and (supposedly) nothing available except gas-guzzling vehicles.

I looked at your comment at that other blog. So far there haven't been any responses, but I'm sure you'll get some. The author of the blog doesn't get too involved in all the arguments and slugfests; most of the namecalling comes from the regular commenters that hang out there. They go ballistic on anybody who's to the left of Rush Limbaugh.

I used to get involved in these online pissing contests, but I got tired of it. It serves no purpose.

I have comment moderation because of some rightwing dickhead who kept spamming this site, almost 3 years ago. I hardly ever use it, but it's nice to know that if some asshole can't express him/herself without namecalling and gibberish, all I have to do is click on "Reject."

Hope you don't get dragged through the mud too badly at that other blog.

July 10, 2008 at 1:22 AM  
Blogger Randal Graves said...

Hey, I'm sure some investor might have lost one of his three or four homes because of the economy. How can you remain so heartless is beyond me.

We've got two kids, and trust me, you don't need an über-machine to trot everyone and their stuff around. Everything has to be bigger in America and it's a crock of shit.

July 10, 2008 at 8:48 AM  
Blogger American Hill BIlly said...

Nah, It was fun I just checked. I've got about 8 responses telling me that I am think a urinal. One was actually intelligent for what knows why put my name through a language translator?? That was the best they could do. Kinda makes you wonder at their IQ's.

On the note of what can be done in the States I had a rack built for my motorcycle. To show people that they can also get around easily, and cheaply.
Also, for immediate relief I took pictures of a bicycle that had a two cycle engine mounted on it. The kits were made in the USA. It shouldn't be to hard for anyone to use, or build one of these!

Beat the bastards at their own game by saving even more fuel!

Peace and Freedom

July 10, 2008 at 9:42 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Randal: Oh my God, you've really made me think. Imagine the heartbreak of some poor investor who lost money on General Motors stock and has to sell one of his weekend getaways. What a painful decision -- get rid of the McMansion on Lake Tahoe or the chateau in the Swiss Alps. Oh, the agony.

AHB: That's good to know, all of those ways people are coming up with to save money and improve gas mileage. I'm sure this will become a lot more common in the States. Even if the corporatocracy doesn't want people to know about these homemade motorcycles and other high-mileage vehicles, more and more Americans will probably start getting inventive like that -- out of necessity. It's time for that good old American ingenuity to make a comeback.

I'll have to go check Jenn's blog and see the responses you've gotten.

July 10, 2008 at 10:46 AM  
Blogger American Hill BIlly said...


I can't visit your blog tonight. I am waiting for "dr alistair" to leave me a hypnotic thought. I gave him my word that if he could make me answer correctly on my comments, then I would take him off of my fascist blog roll. He is cunning just like the rest of them, but almost a little more.

He is supposed to put the answer on your blog. I told him to stay out of my blog when he fails......I've found telling these idiots thanks for moving me higher in the search engine gets rid of them real fast!


Give me a little more time, and the gas saving pictures will speak for them selves!!!!

Peace and Freedom

July 10, 2008 at 7:50 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

AHB: I just took a brief glimpse at your new post, with the high-mileage vehicles. Looks great. I'll read the post in more detail tomorrow. Glad you're doing this.

July 11, 2008 at 12:17 AM  
Anonymous S.W. Anderson said...

"Funny, the linked article expresses sympathy for investors but doesn’t mention anything about unemployed autoworkers."

Excellent observation. Increasingly over the past 30 years, labor's contribution to corporations and the economy have been discounted or, to the extent possible, ignored. I attribute this to several factors, including fear and loathing of having to deal with workers and their issues on the part of financial types and corporate executives.

The other factor is insidious and in part related to the previous one: labor is being marginalized by computerization, automation and jobs designed to rely as little as possible on individual talents, knowledge, experience and insight. The goal is for workers to be fully interchangeable parts whose responsibilities, scope of operation and discretion are extremely limited.

You can thank this approach for being unable at a big-box retailer to get an accurate, helpful answer to a fairly simple question about a camera, appliance or power drill -- from an associate who last week was working in children's clothing or at a checkout up front.

July 11, 2008 at 10:12 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

SW: Very true. Good analysis of how and why labor has become marginalized.

"Fully interchangeable parts whose responsibilities, scope of operation and discretion are extremely limited" -- Yup, that's what so many labor jobs have been relegated to. For that matter, this has happened to more and more desk jobs too.

July 12, 2008 at 12:45 AM  
Blogger Randal Graves said...

s.w. anderson's last paragraph is so spot-on. One sees the word 'specialization' thrown about and that may exist, but not nearly enough on an everyday level. And it's not even that - we're not looking for über-experts - it's having employees familiar with the products they're selling, but instead, they're stuck with treatises on the hard sell. Shift units, that's all.

July 12, 2008 at 7:16 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Randal: And that's quite a combination -- constant sales pitches combined with no product knowledge. "You could purchase five of these gizmos for a 50% saving" coming from the same employee (oh, I mean Associate) who was unable to answer any of your questions.

July 12, 2008 at 10:47 AM  
Blogger Mile High Pixie said...

Funny, the other day ont he cover of the Denver Post, this woman was lamenting how gas prices are making it so expensive to drive around in her Tahoe/Yukon/Klondike/Montana/Western-Theme-Named SUV with her husband and their EIGHT KIDS. I nearly spat out my protein shake at the thought that this woman was raising EIGHT MORE AMERICANS to consume at the rate to which we're accustomed.

More to the point, I was always a Ford gal until my husband showed me that nothing Ford was making that was affordable also got over 30 mpg. Now, we own and drive a Honda Civic. And is it just me, or is anyone else offended when domestic car maker ads tout how "fuel efficient" their cars are and then flash in big print on the TV screen "23 MPG!!!"? Since when is 23 mpg "efficient?!" My sister, Miss Kitty over at Educated & Poor, is driving my 1991 Ford Ranger and getting 28 mpg. Efficient, my aunt Fanny!

July 15, 2008 at 6:54 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

MHP: Yeah, I can't believe these people with huge gas guzzlers (and huge families to match). They're the ones who are least willing to make any sort of change or sacrifice, and they're the ones screaming the loudest to drill, drill more, drill faster.

I'm glad you and Miss Kitty are both using better mileage vehicles. That's a lot more effective, and more immediate, than drilling for more oil.

July 15, 2008 at 8:08 PM  

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