Ya know those people that walk behind the horses in the parades and clean up their poop?
We need someone like that for Obama. A guy who follows him around and picks up all the bull crap the President spews while giving press conferences. Honestly, whoever is writing the garbage running across his teleprompter is officially the most annoying human being ever conceived.
This morning Obama announced his new emissions standards. After all, the first ones worked fantastic, they only resulted in the near demise of the three auto companies. Arguing that those standards didn’t have a financial impact on the big three is like arguing that beans don’t make you pass gas. There’s no question that increased fuel standards from the government made the big three scramble to make cars that people liked and met the requirements. Not to mention the cost it took to develop the means to make certain cars meet those levels.
Obama admitted that the new plan would tack on $1,300 to the cost of a vehicle by 2016, but who are we kidding there’s no question it’ll be more. It’s kinda like how Washington said we would make money from the TARP “investments.” With the way GM and Chrysler are looking, and with the unions looking like they’re going to have a large share of both companies, the additional cost will well exceed $1,300.
Obama claims that the average American will make up that cost difference by purchasing less gas, saying it’ll pay for itself in three years, but that’s hardly the point. Consumers can make that decision on their own now. If they want to spend more on a car that gets better gas mileage assuming they’ll make up the difference by consuming less gas, that’s their decision to make.
However, there are a large chunk of people who would rather pay less for the car, and then drive more conservatively. Obama is effectively taking away that option.
Obama also claims that everyone wins. But as everyone knows, or should know, if the government is behind it, chances are everyone will lose.
“The fact is, everyone wins,” Obama said during a Rose Garden ceremony attended by representatives of the auto industry and environmental groups as well as state and federal lawmakers.
“Consumers pay less for fuel, which means less money going overseas and more money to save or spend here at home. The economy as a whole runs more efficiently by using less oil and producing less pollution,” he said. “And companies like those here today have new incentives to create the technologies and the jobs that will provide smarter ways to power our vehicles.”
Funny, he didn’t mention the auto companies. They are the ones that will have to develop ways for their cars to meet these standards, they’ll be shelling out the upfront cost, and what happens if no one buys the cars? The companies are just screwed I guess.
Obama also skews the “win” for consumers by claiming they’ll pay less for fuel. Which is not really true at all. For starters they’ll have to pay more for the car; second, gas prices are going up not down, the cost of fuel is getting even more expensive. And with no plan in sight for an alternative, and with Obama and the democrats stonewalling any drilling proposals, I would expect gas to be routinely over $3.50 a gallon by the time 2010 rolls around. By 2016 who knows where it will be.
Aside from paying more for the vehicle, consumers will also be getting less for what they pay for.
Why do cars that get 30mpg cost more than cars that get 20mpg, because it costs more to make a car that gets better gas mileage. They both use the same fuel – gasoline – but one car uses that fuel more efficiently. Determining how to do that costs money. Companies can develop engines that use a smaller amount of fuel to perform the normal functions of a car. But again, it costs money. Hence why it costs more for a 30mpg car.
So companies will be faced with two options; develop more advanced engines that use fuel more efficiently or make the car lighter taking out additional luxury features that weight down the car.
The problem with option number one is that consumers will no longer have the choice of a more fuel efficient vehicle, the government is taking that away, so auto companies can’t charge too much more for them. I would fully expect that the development of in-car luxuries will slow and the fun gadgets you might expect in your automobile in seven years won’t be there. The easiest way to make a car more fuel efficient is to make it weigh less, and that’s precisely what companies will do.
Companies can also make cars lighter by decreasing the number of airbags, the amount of material separating the passengers from the outside world and various other techniques that would reduce the safety of the vehicle. In fact the board on energy and environmental systems estimates that CAFE standards played a part in 1,300 to 2,600 additional traffic fatalities in 1993 alone.
So Obama’s fuel standard plan can be summed up with three points…
-More cost and hassle for car companies
-Less choice for consumers
-Doing something the market would do, or already have done, if the demand was there
Sounds like a lose, lose, lose to me.