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May 20, 2009

More For Less! (They're Going To Need a Different Ad Slogan.)

While it may have appeared that Barack Obama had all the essential pieces in place to ensure a successful resurgence of the domestic automobile industry including providing billions in government financing without any accountability, handing majority ownership over to the autoworkers union, and employing renowned Italian business management practices to run things, there was one critical piece missing:

A mandate that automakers produce small, expensive cars that no one wants.

There is an upside, however.

More of you will die.

Hey, Barack Obama said he was going to reduce your carbon footprint, he just didn't say how. (It's people! Carbon Offsets are made out of people!)

But none of that is important.  What is important is, as the President points out, we make up 5% of the world's population but use 25% of the world’s oil. You know what that means?

We’ve been spectacularly prosperous and productive and have been reaping the rewards of our success, hard work, and ambition.

Naturally, this must be stopped.

And not a moment too soon:  As President Obama notes, we’ve been aware of this problem “one way or another since the gas shortages of the 1970s.”

That’s nearly 40 years of continuous dire warnings we ignored during which time nothing particularly terrible happened.  Fortunately, we now have a President willing to look past benign reality and instead take action to address dire warnings. 

But what makes the increased costs and fatalities worth it? As the President says:

“We will save 1.8 billion barrels of oil over the lifetime of the vehicles sold in the next five years.  Just to give you a sense of magnitude, that's more oil than we imported last year from Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Libya, and Nigeria combined.   Here's another way of looking at it:  This is the projected equivalent of taking 58 million cars off the road for an entire year.”

And here’s a different way to get a sense of the magnitude: That’s about three months of oil usage.  Not per year, but total savings, all added up, for all the cars sold in the next five years over their entire useful lives.

Does this President understand cost/benefit analysis or what?

Plus, you’ll come out ahead anyway! According to the President, you’ll make up the extra costs in gasoline savings.

Assuming you live.

Of course, you could do that now and purchase an expensive hybrid that might pay back the extra cost in gas savings.  Or you could purchase a small car.

Mazda 3 Say, this little Mazda 3.  See, that’s not too bad.  Not exactly roomy, can’t haul too many heavy items, but something you could live with and… Oops, the Mazda 3 gets only 32 MPG highway, that’s short of what’s needed.

Toyota Yaris Ah, here we go, the Toyota Yaris. Now THAT’s one sweet ride.  At 1.5 liters, the engine is larger than that found in most riding motors and nearly all chainsaws.

You say you don’t want to buy a Toyota Yaris?

That’s exactly the point.  The problem with choice is that people often make the wrong one.  That’s why we elect leaders so there’s always someone around to tell us what the right choice is.

And you like the Yaris.  You want the Yaris.

There’s one problem.  The Yaris doesn’t get good enough gas mileage either.  You see, the new standards will require the average passenger car to get about 39 miles per gallon.

Honda Insight That leaves you with the hybrids like the Honda Insight, which not only offer the same approximate dimensions of the compact Chevy Aveo, but does so for about $9000 more.

Trucks will need to average about 30 miles a gallon.  Here is a list of the top five trucks that get 30 miles a gallon:

  1. Ford Escape Hybrid.
  2. TBA
  3. TBA
  4. TBA
  5. TBA


So what's an economical solution for the average truck driver who doesn't have an extra nine grand lying around to buy a hybrid?

The Toyota Yaris - El Camino edition.

Yaris El Camino
That sound you hear?  That’s the future coming.



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May 20, 2009 at 10:44 PM in Current Affairs | Permalink


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Are you saying that more of us will die to save a certain number of barrels of oil? That sounds like Blood for Oil. Where have I heard that?

Posted by: Ken Mueller | May 21, 2009 10:11:04 AM

I have read somewhere that 2/3 of our oil and natural gas come from (are you ready?) North America! So just who are we going to punish when we become "energy independent"?
Look at the map. What is North America? You will need more than a passport to get into Canada if this comes about.

Posted by: barryjo | May 21, 2009 6:09:54 PM

Number 1 & 2 exporters of gas/oil to the USA are Canada and Mexico. VZ and Saudi Arabia trade the number three spot.

Posted by: TheOldMan | May 26, 2009 1:05:59 PM

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