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Obama administration asks Congress to approve more funds before leaving in August

The cash for clunkers program was controversial when it was first announced. The program offers Americans $4,500 to trade in their old cars with poor fuel economy and high emission output for a newer vehicle that gets better fuel economy. At the same time, the program was intended to help the ailing automakers turn some profit.

Reuters
reports that the Obama administration has announced that the $1 billion allotted to the program is now gone and that the program is in danger of being discontinued if more funds can’t be found. Car dealers around the nation began offering the government rebates in early July and by the end of July, more than 4,000 cars had been purchased using the rebates.

The program now has about 250,000 rebates waiting to be processed and additional funds are needed. The Obama administration is trying to get Congress to approve additional funds for the program before they leave in August. The program ran out of funds where sales unexpectedly spiked this week after the transactions began being logged and approved.

Reuters reports that officials had originally intended to simply suspend the program late Thursday or early Friday when funding ran out. Now officials are planning to keep the program in place while more funds for the rebates are approved. The rub is that in a short period it will be difficult to find funding for the program.

Estimations place the number of dealers able to participate in the program across the country at 16,000. For the funds to be depleted, each of those dealers would need to have sold more than 12 cars according to Reuters.

Congress had already said in early July that if the program proved popular and consumers were buying fuel-efficient vehicles that the program would possibly be extended.



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Change
By FITCamaro on 7/31/09, Rating: 0
RE: Change
By Moohbear on 7/31/2009 10:38:08 AM , Rating: 2
It's certainly a thinly disguised hand-out, but it benefits to more than the automakers and the buyers. Newer, safer and more sober cars on the road is good for everyone. Sure, it sucks when you think its paid with your taxes, but at the same time, you get something out of it as well. I can think of far worse uses of public money (like to converter box coupons).


RE: Change
By FITCamaro on 7/31/2009 10:43:46 AM , Rating: 2
What am I getting out of this other than more debt that will be paid by future generations?

I didn't like the converter box coupons either, but at least that was funded by the auctions of the spectrum.

Newer, safer cars are good. If you can afford one. And the fact is no one with a piece of crap who drove it because they had to is going to be able to get a car even with this program. If they can't afford the $79 leases you see for a new Kia, they can't afford the car payment on a new car even with a $4500 credit.

This program is mostly helping people who want a new car and can already afford one.


RE: Change
By bhieb on 7/31/09, Rating: -1
RE: Change
By collegeguypat on 7/31/2009 11:20:12 AM , Rating: 2
Your example is slightly off; I think it's for any cars built after 1985 (not 100% sure on the year, but it was the first year EPA had gas mileage estimates). So, the '72 Pinto will still be on the road but the '88 suv won't be anymore. Plus the cars / trucks / suv's that they even allowed to be traded in are only like 90 different models or something really low like that.


RE: Change
By bhieb on 7/31/2009 11:28:10 AM , Rating: 1
Yeah I'm off on a bunch there, you also have to have it registered to you for a year so no swinging by Bob's.

However my original point is that it is not really the worst program out there, just a more publicized one.


RE: Change
By invidious on 7/31/2009 12:00:05 PM , Rating: 4
They took $1 billion dollars from the tax payers and gave it to the auto industry for no good reason. There are a lot of industries that are slow right now. The only difference it that the auto unions helped get Obama elected.

I would have much rather seen this $1 billion go towards not cutting NASA's budget.


RE: Change
By Murst on 7/31/2009 12:09:26 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
I would have much rather seen this $1 billion go towards not cutting NASA's budget.

I didn't realize that their 5% INCREASE was actually a cut. Care to explain what you mean?


RE: Change
By Bender 123 on 7/31/09, Rating: 0
RE: Change
By FITCamaro on 7/31/2009 11:27:44 AM , Rating: 4
quote:
Even if I go down to "bob's" and pick up that clunker for $1K and trade it in to net me $3500, then it helps me, the dealer, and it helps assure that piece does not get back to the wholesale market to stick around for another 5 years.


You must have had the car registered for over a year to qualify.


RE: Change
By bhieb on 7/31/09, Rating: 0
RE: Change
By invidious on 7/31/2009 12:02:59 PM , Rating: 5
No no no, SOME of the people paying for it are benifitting from it. The vast majority of people did not gain anything from this.


RE: Change
By bighairycamel on 7/31/2009 2:13:50 PM , Rating: 2
I'm not taking sides in this clunker program, but the same thing can be said for nearly everything our tax dollars are used for.

Ex 1 - I pay for the local school corporation with my county taxes but I don't have any kids nor will I ever have kids, so they don't benefit me or my family (yes I did benefit from them at one point but my 12 years of school don't equal out to the 60+ years of taxes I pay).

Ex 2 - Millions of my state taxes are used to repave roads 200 hundred miles from me that I will never use. Again, I pay but don't benefit.


RE: Change
By sinful on 7/31/2009 2:44:47 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Ex 1 - I pay for the local school corporation with my county taxes but I don't have any kids nor will I ever have kids, so they don't benefit me or my family (yes I did benefit from them at one point but my 12 years of school don't equal out to the 60+ years of taxes I pay).


Not true.

Consider what would happen if all those kids WEREN'T in school. Lots of kids... uneducated...with a lot free time = TROUBLE.

You would in fact probably pay for it one way or the other - either by vandalism, more taxes for police protection, more for insurance, etc, etc.

Also, all those kids (hopefully) become taxpayers, thereby lessening the amount you have to pay in taxes. The higher education and smarter they are, the better their jobs - and the more taxes they pay. Meaning your share of the tax burden goes down.

i.e. if one of those kids turns into Bill Gates, then guess what, your taxes might actually go down since he's paying so much more in taxes. He might give a few million to build a new library in your town, saving you the tax costs to do so - and perhaps help stimulate your local economy when he stops in and buys something from you.

quote:

Ex 2 - Millions of my state taxes are used to repave roads 200 hundred miles from me that I will never use. Again, I pay but don't benefit.


You may not - but the products at Wal Mart didn't appear there by magic. Some truck driver probably used those roads. Maybe the employees at the factory used those roads to make the product that ended up in Wal-Mart.

Just because you don't use them doesn't mean you don't benefit from it indirectly.

Yes, there are exceptions, but as a general rule, the amount it costs you extra in taxes is pretty minimal compared to the benefits you get from it.

You might not get a letter from the truck driver thanking you, but I assure you if Wal Mart said "Sorry, we don't have any food in stock because a road 200 miles away was closed down", you would NOT be happy.

That road might have cost you $1 in taxes, but now having to drive further and go to a different store is probably worth more to you than $1.

Sometimes you have to look at the big picture to realize there's more going on than meets the eye.


RE: Change
By kaoken on 7/31/2009 3:14:18 PM , Rating: 1
He is not saying it's a bad thing. He is just giving other examples of how taxes help some people and not others.


RE: Change
By bighairycamel on 7/31/2009 3:25:14 PM , Rating: 1
If schools weren't free because of my tax dollars but still mandatory, that would take the burden of cost off of me. That doesn't mean the whole country would become dumber. Kids would still be required to go to school but the cost would be their parents, but that would be very expensive and not possible for every family. I pay taxes so that so that they get the benefit of having free education.

And if road A didn't exist, goods would still get to their destination by the use of road B and I would still be able to purchase those goods regardless. Maybe the "paving" of old roads was a bad example, but take for example new roads that our tax dollars are spent on that I would never use. Maybe these roads will eleviate congestion in one area but wouldn't stop goods from reaching their destination.


RE: Change
By sinful on 8/1/2009 1:06:50 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
If schools weren't free because of my tax dollars but still mandatory, that would take the burden of cost off of me. That doesn't mean the whole country would become dumber.


Uhhh, a lot less kids going to school generally means a dumber population.
You can't deny if everyone stopped paying $3 in taxes and only parents of school kids got a $3000 bill that attendance WOULDN'T drop tremendously.
Not sure where you live, but a lot of families wouldn't be able to absorb that kind of hit.

quote:
And if road A didn't exist, goods would still get to their destination by the use of road B and I would still be able to purchase those goods regardless. Maybe the "paving" of old roads was a bad example, but take for example new roads that our tax dollars are spent on that I would never use. Maybe these roads will eleviate congestion in one area but wouldn't stop goods from reaching their destination.


Again, there are problems with that.
If a truck driver sits in traffic for 5 hours instead of 2 hours, guess what - you're indirectly paying his salary and YOU are being forced to eat that 3 hours of extra salary inefficiency.
i.e. "Mysteriously" the cost of your goods will increase because of increasing fuel costs, labor cost, etc, associated with that inefficiency.
Maybe instead of arriving on-time, the Wal-mart dock workers now have to work "non business hours", which command a higher price premium than if the truck had arrived during the normal 8-5 shift.

Where do those costs end up?
On the price of the goods you purchase.

People like to pretend that if the government didn't exist that suddenly all these cost "magically disappear" and things like roads are suddenly free.

No, not quite.

In fact, if the government is involved in an INTELLIGENT fashion, it reduces the costs to businesses (by diverting costs to taxpayers), but which makes our businesses more competitive worldwide.

IF that competitive advantage is utilized effectively, those extra costs can be recouped.
i.e. if Boeing snags a multi-billion dollar contract away from Airbus because they are more competitive, then the extra tax burden to make Boeing more competitive is worth it.

People act like socialization is the death of capitalism.... not quite... if it's done CORRECTLY, it makes our businesses MORE COMPETITIVE.

One need only look at how GM wants socialized healthcare - it's because it would LOWER their costs and make them more competitive globably.


RE: Change
By bighairycamel on 8/1/2009 1:46:21 AM , Rating: 2
Go to a dictionary and look up the word "mandatory", ok thank you.

And I can tell you one thing, I would lose a lot less money paying for a guy to sit in traffic for a few hours than I would in my 401k when a major automaker goes belly-up. So don't pretend like a few cents at the register is worth more than the thousands I have invested in mutual funds and index funds that all buy automotive stock.


RE: Change
By MrX8503 on 8/1/2009 2:59:59 AM , Rating: 2
quote:

Ex 1 - I pay for the local school corporation with my county taxes but I don't have any kids nor will I ever have kids, so they don't benefit me or my family (yes I did benefit from them at one point but my 12 years of school don't equal out to the 60+ years of taxes I pay).
Ex 2 - Millions of my state taxes are used to repave roads 200 hundred miles from me that I will never use. Again, I pay but don't benefit.


Dude no one cares. There are millions of Americans paying the same taxes as you are that aren't benefiting either. If everyone had the same mindset as you we'd still be driving on dirt roads. We all pay taxes live with it.


RE: Change
By Moohbear on 7/31/2009 11:26:51 AM , Rating: 2
Safer cars are good for everyone, not just their drivers. Safer cars are less likely to be involved in an accident (better handling, better brakes, etc). Less accidents=lower mortality/disability=less welfare money in the long run. Plus, passengers of a safer car a less likely to suffer severe injuries in case of accident. Again, that means less welfare money in the long run.
Cars polluting less means less disability/deaths caused by pollution. Again, less welfare money in the long run.
The rebate replaces the trade-in, meaning you're turning-in a car whose value is less than $4,500. And the car is definitively removed from the roads. I doubt a lot of better-off people drive an old beater as a main car. And getting the $79 lease for a Kia, as you suggest, probably mean you have a sterling credit score, not likely if you're struggling financially (not to mention the actual conditions of the lease, I doubt they're very interesting).
If you have a little bit of money available to replace your beater, you can go from another clunker to a new car with this package. And everyone benefits, to a certain degree, contrary to you assertion.
You may not like those "social programs" on principles, I don't either, but being dogmatic is counter-productive. If the global benefits to society is positive, I don't have a problem with them.


RE: Change
By zombiexl on 7/31/2009 12:36:55 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Less accidents=lower mortality/disability=less welfare money in the long run. Plus, passengers of a safer car a less likely to suffer severe injuries in case of accident. Again, that means less welfare money in the long run.


Or we can look at it from the other extreme. More dead people means less Social Security benefits to pay out. Rate me down all you want, but the fact of the matter is SS was set up to not pay out until after most people had died. The retirement age just hasn't kept up with the technology that keeps us ticking.


RE: Change
By PrinceGaz on 7/31/2009 1:27:45 PM , Rating: 1
I haven't looked up any official statistics but I am quite certain that in car accidents in general, for every person killed there are many many more injured to varying degrees. Therefore reducing the severity of accidents generally will lower the level of injuries and help save money in the long run.

As for converter boxes, rather than mess about with coupons, they should simply have placed an order for however many tens of millions of some cheap but reliable basic model (which would allow them to be obtained at a huge discount compared with retail prices) and ship everybody one along with clear instructions including diagrams that even an imbecile can understand on what to do with it. As Aleksandr would say, "Simples!"


RE: Change
By Hiawa23 on 7/31/09, Rating: -1
RE: Change
By Chaser on 7/31/2009 4:44:32 PM , Rating: 2
Yes they are. But there's no end to the list of good things that make sense. But the 60% of people that pay taxes can't afford to pay for every good idea that someone comes up with. That's not the purpose of government.


RE: Change
By darkfoon on 8/1/2009 2:25:23 AM , Rating: 3
I agree with you 100%.
I fit into the category of person-who-needs-new-car-but-can't-afford-one.
My parents traded in their car years ago for an SUV and another car, to help us move. The other car is toasted. The SUV sucks more gas than we can afford.
If we could buy a new car, we would. But even $4500 doesn't help us buy something gas efficient.

Thanks Obama! Thanks for helping the people who can help themselves.


RE: Change
By thurston on 8/1/09, Rating: -1
RE: Change
By wookie1 on 7/31/2009 12:16:45 PM , Rating: 5
"Newer, safer and more sober cars on the road is good for everyone"

I absolutely agree. I don't want a bunch of drunk cars being driven around. Seriously, though, people are trading in a Suburban for a Tahoe to get the 2MPG benefit needed to qualify. This is so much better that it's worth borrowing even more from China and others that are now getting weary of supporting our spending habit?


RE: Change
By mattclary on 7/31/2009 10:39:34 AM , Rating: 5
"The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money."
Alexis de Tocqueville


RE: Change
By Kuroyama on 7/31/2009 10:41:36 AM , Rating: 1
This accomplishes two goals: jobs for auto dealers and decreasing oil use. I'm not a fan of the CARS program since I think such a big tax credit paid for by American taxpayers should be limited to say cars assembled in the US, but call it what it is, don't wheel out standard anti-liberal cliches (entitlement + vote buying) which have nothing to do with this.


RE: Change
By FITCamaro on 7/31/2009 10:46:29 AM , Rating: 3
It is the entitlement mentality. People believe they're entitled to this kind of thing now. It's someone else's fault they have a crappy car and not enough money to buy a new one. So the government should be helping them get a new one.

And it is vote buying.


RE: Change
By omnicronx on 7/31/09, Rating: -1
RE: Change
By Ammohunt on 7/31/2009 11:09:02 AM , Rating: 2
You are forgeting that the Government is in the car business with Government Motors(GM). They are basically subsidizing themselves with our money!(Government doesn't have money or generate money it is all from taxpayers)


RE: Change
By Murst on 7/31/2009 11:12:03 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
We are subsidizing ourselves with our money.

There, fixed it for you.


RE: Change
By Ammohunt on 7/31/2009 11:18:13 AM , Rating: 5
I can barely afford my grocery getter now i gotta buy my neighbors a new car too?


RE: Change
By Murst on 7/31/2009 11:23:48 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
I can barely afford my grocery getter now i gotta buy my neighbors a new car too?

If you can barely afford your car now, chances are you're not the one who's paying for this.


RE: Change
By zombiexl on 7/31/2009 12:41:33 PM , Rating: 2
That's not a fair assumption. Many people live beyond or on the edge of their means and still pay a crap load in taxes.


RE: Change
By Murst on 7/31/2009 1:14:36 PM , Rating: 2
Then they shouldn't complain about barely being able to afford a car. Their situation is based on their choice to live like that.


RE: Change
By zombiexl on 7/31/2009 2:45:46 PM , Rating: 4
But they might have more money had the government not taken it by force. Also anyone who doesnt have a negative or 0 tax liability when they file their returns has every right to complain about how their money is being spent.


RE: Change
By kaoken on 7/31/2009 3:11:59 PM , Rating: 2
It's money management, they'd probably be spending beyond their means anyways even without taxes.


RE: Change
By Ammohunt on 8/1/2009 8:12:44 AM , Rating: 2
So you are saying that its ok to buy my neighbors a new car if i can afford to pay the taxes? say what?


RE: Change
By nafhan on 7/31/2009 11:15:59 AM , Rating: 3
Politicians in general care about getting votes and keeping their jobs. If they say they are "stimulating the economy" or "helping the environment", it's likely they are just doing whatever is easiest to make it look like they care about economy or the environment with minimal regard as to whether it actually helps the economy or the environment.


RE: Change
By Shig on 7/31/2009 11:25:21 AM , Rating: 2
Well when all you watch on TV are other rich people spending millions of dollars at the drop of a hat, then yeah, people don't think correctly. These warped views on reality are going to be in for some hard truths soon.

Corporate Media and decades of consumerism are hard to just turn off.

I drive a clunker, but my clunker is a 97' Honda Civic that gets good gas mileage :) That's why I bought it. Shouldn't I be more entitled for getting a new car because I was actually responsible in the first place by not buying a gas guzzler?


RE: Change
By theapparition on 7/31/2009 12:05:11 PM , Rating: 2
No,
The only thing you are "entitled" to is life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

That's it. Get it out of your head that you are entitled to anything else.


RE: Change
By Alexstarfire on 7/31/2009 1:10:10 PM , Rating: 2
He was joking.


RE: Change
By mcnabney on 7/31/2009 10:42:49 AM , Rating: 5
Perhaps you aren't entirely familiar with how our system of government works.

Vote for me and I'll bring more government jobs.
Vote for me and I'll lower your taxes.
Vote for me and I will write laws that penalize people you don't like.
Vote for me and I'll endorse your particular religion.

What, you thought that people got elected because they would do a great job running the country in an equitable fashion?


RE: Change
By kaoken on 7/31/2009 12:40:14 PM , Rating: 1
Your analogy is out of whack. It would more be 100 bucks for a new tv, but whatever. In the end this is good for everybody. You get a fuel efficient car and fight climate change!


RE: Change
By zombiexl on 7/31/2009 12:46:19 PM , Rating: 3
I thought it was now called climate crisis, am I wrong?
From what I rememebr it was
Global Cooling, then Global Warming, then Gobal Climate Change and now I thought I heard recently it was Global Climate Crisis. Of course that may just be an Obama thing, since everything has been a crisis or emergency since he took office.


RE: Change
By FITCamaro on 7/31/2009 1:26:29 PM , Rating: 1
Maybe in your deluded view where cars are killing the planet.


RE: Change
By kaoken on 7/31/2009 2:52:19 PM , Rating: 1
You're kidding right? Cars along account for 10% of the worlds carbon emission. The only delusion is people who won't give up their gas guzzlers.


RE: Change
By MrBungle123 on 7/31/2009 3:04:14 PM , Rating: 2
I think we should ban the ocean since it is responsible for producing so much water vapor and since water vapor accounts for 2x the warming that carbon dioxide does it just makes more sense to go after the biggest offender.

Of course anyone that disagrees with this is a delusional fool that is just being selfish trying to take up 70% of the earths surface for themselves.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenhouse_gas


RE: Change
By mcnabney on 7/31/2009 10:29:17 PM , Rating: 2
I know you are trying to be cute and all, but try to listen and learn something.

Carbon is generally in balance. It cycles from CO2 gasses in the atmosphere, plant biomass, and in various dissolved forms in the oceans. Ultimately, it gets turned into carbonates and settle to the bottom of the ocean - harmless. But that takes a very long time. A lot of carbon has been 'sequestered' over the millenia in the form of oil, natural gas, and coal. By burning those set-aside carbon sources we are very rapidly (in a geologic sense) upsetting the balance. The buffers, forests and bodies of water, are not capable of capturing all of this extra carbon and that has resulted in about a 50% increase in atmospheric CO2 in the last 200 years. Water vapor comes and goes quickly. Even methane (cow farts / natural gas) which is more heat absorbent will degrade into CO2 and water vapor in 8-10 years. But the carbon dioxide is only going to leave by being turned into plants or being absorbed into the oceans - neither of which can happen fast enough to counter how much we are releasing. So the CO2 increase is fully man-made. And 100% of scientists agree that more CO2 means more heat will be retained. What that ends up doing is still up for debate. All I know is that this is one kind of change that is always going to be bad because it is happening far too fast for adaptation.


RE: Change
By Spuke on 8/3/2009 3:26:26 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
But that takes a very long time. A lot of carbon has been 'sequestered' over the millenia in the form of oil, natural gas, and coal.
If you introduce something that's already there, are you really introducing that something?


RE: Change
By FITCamaro on 7/31/2009 3:25:36 PM , Rating: 2
Yes and MANMADE carbon emissions account for but a small fraction of all worldwide carbon emissions. So 10% of a small amount isn't that big a deal.

And that would be "delusional". Keep drinking the koolaid.


RE: Change
By kaoken on 8/1/2009 3:21:48 PM , Rating: 2
Nature does make more CO2, but it was in equal balance with nature absorbing it back. Now people are creating more CO2 than what nature can absorb, hence creating our dilemma.

Big fish small pond my friend.


RE: Change
By Spuke on 8/3/2009 3:24:26 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Nature does make more CO2, but it was in equal balance with nature absorbing it back.
Humans occur naturally, therefore, we are part of nature. So what we are/do is natural. Since what we do is natural, then it's not possible for us to throw nature out of balance.


RE: Change
By zinfamous on 7/31/2009 12:54:01 PM , Rating: 2
vote buying, eh?

the exact same would be true of the $300 cheque handed out to every taxpayer, regardless of incentive, shortly after the previous administration stepped into power and wanted to figure out what to do with the $300 billion budget surplus.

Save it to finance a war that we plan on starting in 3 years?

Funnel it into education?

Use it to finance the massive expansion of government that we will initiate within the next 8 years?

etc, etc.

At least there is an incentive in this attempt, not a simple blank cheque for clear vote buying.

$300 to everyone or $4000 to those buying new cars, in hopes of stimulating the auto industry. Which is more expensive in the end?


RE: Change
By Alexstarfire on 7/31/2009 1:12:42 PM , Rating: 1
Wait. Giving taxpayers their own money back is vote buying? Can you please explain that to me.


RE: Change
By FITCamaro on 7/31/2009 1:25:11 PM , Rating: 2
Giving taxpayers back their own money I wouldn't consider vote buying. But millions of people who pay no taxes got those checks. And those who more than paid their fair share got nothing because "they don't need it".

I was against the first stimulus, the mortgage bailout, the TARP program, the auto bailouts, the 2nd stimulus, all this sh*t.


RE: Change
By Alexstarfire on 7/31/2009 11:33:07 PM , Rating: 2
Ok, if that was the case then it would be vote buying. I was only a young teen when that happened. I naturally didn't get a check and don't know a whole lot about something I had no control over.


RE: Change
By zinfamous on 7/31/2009 2:31:02 PM , Rating: 3
It is when that surplus suddenly becomes a deficit, and the nincompoops at the helm turn around and ask the taxpayers to pay even more for an extremely unpopular war and a vast expansion of government that even the admin's supporters didn't vote for.

Give back a measly sum now only to ask for more later...how was that a good idea?


RE: Change
By OoklaTheMok on 7/31/2009 1:33:09 PM , Rating: 2
The Reuters article is flawed. The program is not out of money. In fact, so far it has only paid our $96 million out of the $1 billion allotment. The credit has been paid out for 23,000 car purchases. The reason they suspended the program temporarily, was because there is a huge backlog and they are concerned about the burn rate of the money. There are currently 25,000 car purchases in the backlog that have not yet been processed. That will be an easy $100 million more. And then almost a quarter of the allotted money will have been spent already. That is the concern.

The program is much more popular than the government had expected.

I really wish DailyTech would step the quality of it's reporting. This article on DailyTech is so overly misleading it's a joke.


RE: Change
By FITCamaro on 7/31/2009 2:16:25 PM , Rating: 2
Well they just upped it to $2 billion. So I'd say it was either spent (just not actually spent because of the backlog) or they just wanted to up it anyway. Either way more borrowed money gone.


RE: Change
By FITCamaro on 7/31/2009 2:11:51 PM , Rating: 1
And the waste continues. They just upped it to $2 billion. Before long its going to be a permanent program.


RE: Change
By MrBungle123 on 7/31/2009 2:40:06 PM , Rating: 3
Hey FIT its not big deal the fed will just monitize some more treasury bonds and Barry and Geithner will take care of all of this for you. Well until a 2.5" x 6.1" strip of paper and a half a thimble of ink cost more than $100 anyway.


RE: Change
By kaoken on 7/31/09, Rating: 0
RE: Change
By FITCamaro on 7/31/2009 3:27:21 PM , Rating: 1
There is no benefit to anyone but the few hundred thousand people who got a new car cheaper than they otherwise would at the expense of everyone else.


RE: Change
By kaoken on 8/1/2009 3:27:04 PM , Rating: 2
You are also forgetting the spark in sales for the automaker, and reducing carbon emissions.

But someone brought this up in the comments. There are plenty of other examples where tax doesn't necessary benefit everyone.

IE: Tax for roads hundreds of miles from where you live. Or tax for education when you don't have kids, etc.


RE: Change
By Spuke on 8/3/2009 3:43:29 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
You are also forgetting the spark in sales for the automaker, and reducing carbon emissions.
Well, since trucks still lead sales of all vehicles (and is increasing), reducing carbon emissions is debatable.


RE: Change
By FITCamaro on 7/31/2009 3:28:58 PM , Rating: 2
I want a new TV. Can I come to your house and steal $100 since you don't seem to mind the government doing it?


Fuzzy math
By Spivonious on 7/31/2009 10:22:38 AM , Rating: 2
Wait a minute....4000 purchases but 250,000 rebates?




RE: Fuzzy math
By SoulBlighter on 7/31/2009 10:29:39 AM , Rating: 2
That is what is assumed is in pipeline to be processed. And i think it is a good scheme, fat better than giving money to Big three; i would preferred a bit more things added into it like old cars regardless of mileage to be taken out. Which will take all oldie cars which have more than 18mpg in books only.
I was asking my dad to trade in his 98 mercury and trade in with something newer, which took me 4 days to argue and made him visit dealers yesterday.


RE: Fuzzy math
By Ammohunt on 7/31/2009 11:15:00 AM , Rating: 1
Your're right i changed my mind! Everyone in america deserves a new car! and a new house! and a boob job for their wife! you know now that i think of it 40% taxes is really not enough! government would be so much better at managing my income then me! I propose a new 100% tax on everything!

Three cheers for Karl Marx!


RE: Fuzzy math
By kattanna on 7/31/2009 11:34:34 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
and a boob job for their wife


now that!.. is a program i could get behind

:>)


RE: Fuzzy math
By theapparition on 7/31/2009 12:06:48 PM , Rating: 3
Speak for yourself, but I'd rather be in front ;)


RE: Fuzzy math
By Spivonious on 7/31/2009 11:44:38 AM , Rating: 2
Yep, let's take cars the run fine but aren't very efficient and throw them in a landfill. Meanwhile we've used up more resources creating the new car that replaced it. But don't worry it will save a couple $100 in gas.

</sarcasm>


Clowns
By bubbastrangelove on 7/31/2009 12:54:35 PM , Rating: 1
And these clowns want to be in charge of our health care?

How about the government actually fix something they already have their hands in before taking on more responsibility? There's plenty to choose from:

- illegal immigration/secure the boarders
- social security
- the trillion dollar deficit
- economy & paying back the taxpayers
- trade deficit
- taxes
- get out of China's Pocket

Do I need to go on? Agreeing to give these clowns more responsibility, power and control over our lives is asinine.

Are people really this stupid?




RE: Clowns
By Alexstarfire on 7/31/2009 1:17:25 PM , Rating: 1
Coulda just stopped at point 1. If we've learned anything it's that the government can't do pretty much anything right.


RE: Clowns
By Harinezumi on 7/31/2009 2:26:16 PM , Rating: 2
I believe this falls under
- economy & paying back the taxpayers


RE: Clowns
By Nfarce on 7/31/2009 5:11:41 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
And these clowns want to be in charge of our health care?


That's exactly what I was going to say. Note how nobody is bringing that subject up. These incompetent morons in Washington running things can't even run a simple car swap program. And the real kicker is that "red tape" helped kill this. LAUGHABLE. Even more laughable is the pinheads to support these morons who WANT the government to take over our health care - just so a whopping 16% of the population can have access to it too.


Hrm
By Nick5324 on 7/31/2009 10:44:20 AM , Rating: 2
"....the program is in danger of being discontinued if more funds can’t be found."

If you pay taxes, that is where the money comes from, they don't go out back and "find" it. I realize what is meant is that they look to trim some money from x,y and z that has approved funding and move it to this program, but it always rubs me the wrong way when it's worded that way.

I also look at this program as vote buying under the guise of doing something for the public good; for anyone who has read Atlas Shrugged, this type of program gives you pause.




RE: Hrm
By Spivonious on 7/31/2009 11:59:42 AM , Rating: 2
Actually, they do "go out back and find it". The government needs more money so they borrow it from other countries (primarily China).


...
By Jeff7181 on 7/31/2009 5:09:59 PM , Rating: 2
Damn... so I should have visited the ghetto and bought a $500 1985 Crown Vic that gets 6 mpg and pours black smoke from the tail-pipe, THEN upgraded to my 4 cylinder Altima and got $4000 off the cost of my Altima...




RE: ...
By Inspector2211 on 7/31/2009 6:52:35 PM , Rating: 2
The problem is, you have to prove that you owned it for at least a year - not only OWNED it, but kept it REGISTERED and INSURED for a full year as a prerequisite of turning it in for a cash-for-clunkers rebate.

That means you need to bring
- the title
- three proof-of-insurance slips for the last three 6-month insurance periods
and
- two registration slips (for this ongoing year and the last year)
to the dealership. Six sheets of paper all in all.


By rudolphna on 7/31/2009 11:50:43 AM , Rating: 2
You got a little ahead of yourself sir.

http://money.cnn.com/2009/07/30/autos/cash_for_clu...




By rudolphna on 7/31/2009 11:50:57 AM , Rating: 2
You got a little ahead of yourself sir.

http://money.cnn.com/2009/07/30/autos/cash_for_clu...




Might want to update this article...
By Iaiken on 7/31/2009 1:24:27 PM , Rating: 2
Congress just threw another 2 billion dollars at the project.




By Inspector2211 on 7/31/2009 2:06:03 PM , Rating: 2
...took me more than three hours to get rid of my 13 year old Ford Expedition and finally drive off in a brand new Nissan Altima Hybrid.
I finally got out of the dealership around 11 p.m.
They told me they had done 30 cash-for-clunker deals on that day alone (Thursday 7/30).




LOL
By Soldier1969 on 7/31/2009 10:27:26 PM , Rating: 2
Hows that Hope and Change working out for you all that voted for this going? Sitting back and watching the show, its hilarious! Come on 2012 I say, someone for the love of God get us back on track.




Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/09, Rating: -1
RE: Vote buying
By captainpierce on 7/31/2009 11:26:18 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
Every law that gets passed by congress ends up benefiting someone, and almost always at the expense of others.


That's because the National Government is going beyond its enumerated powers in the Constitution. It's been this way a long time and we've been led to believe that government intervention in our economy is good for us. There will always be a need for cars, which is why it's foolish to subsidize their purchase. Artificially stimulating demand may work in the short term but it's not sustainable.

And you're right. One billion in today's federal budget is like a rounding error in a farm bill. But it's still a lot of money and it has to come from somewhere. Print it, tax it, borrow it...all options to get it and none of them desirable, especially in a weak economy.


RE: Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/2009 11:35:24 AM , Rating: 2
The constitution doesn't specifically give the right for the government to do an income tax... are you arguing that all income tax should be abolished b/c the constitution doesn't explicitly state that it should exist?

You could also argue that what the government is doing can be derived from the powers given to it by the constitution. In any case, such arguments are pretty much pointless, since it has been established that such government actions are within its power.


RE: Vote buying
By Spivonious on 7/31/2009 11:58:11 AM , Rating: 2
The federal government has specific powers. The founders were so afraid of the fed taking over that they enumerated the powers the government has.

-make taxes/duties/imposts/excises to pay creditors and provide for common defence and general welfare but all these things will be -uniform throughout the country
-borrow money
-regulate commerce with other countries and between states
-make laws on naturalization
-make laws on bankruptcies
-make money and regulate its value
-set the standard of weights and measures
-punish counterfeiters
-establish post office and post roads
-grant copyrights/patents
-create tribunals inferior to the supreme court
-define and punish felonies committed on the "high seas" (international waters)
-declare war, create laws concerning military capture
-provide an army and a navy, but no money can go to them for longer than two years
-make rules for government of military
-call forth the Militia to execute laws, suppress insurrections, repel invasions
-organize, arm, discipline the Militia
-build forts, armories, dockyards, etc.
-make laws to execute the powers list above

Now, you could argue that giving people new cars is providing for the general welfare, but I doubt the founders would agree with you. I think they meant providing safe food, safe medicine, licensing doctors, etc.


RE: Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/2009 12:08:09 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Now, you could argue that giving people new cars is providing for the general welfare, but I doubt the founders would agree with you.

What does "providing cars" have to do with this credit and the founding fathers? First, cars didn't exist back then. Second, the government isn't providing cars to anyone (except maybe certain public employees for the purpose of performing their jobs).

And if you think that the founding fathers such as Jefferson had in mind providing medicine, you are VERY mistaken. Jefferson based his ideas on John Locke's. However, Locke defined 4 rights ( liberty, property, life, and health ). Take a guess at which one Jefferson left out of the constitution.

BTW, your list is rather silly ( sure, those are powers given to the government, but (a) it is not comprehensive, and (b) many of those items can be interpreted in such a way as to justify most if not all of the actions of the current gov't).


RE: Vote buying
By captainpierce on 7/31/2009 1:15:56 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
BTW, your list is rather silly ( sure, those are powers given to the government, but (a) it is not comprehensive, and (b) many of those items can be interpreted in such a way as to justify most if not all of the actions of the current gov't).


Washington bureaucrats and power hungry politicians probably sleep very well knowing how compliant most people are when it comes to increasing the power of the federal gov't beyond the founders intentions.


RE: Vote buying
By MrBungle123 on 7/31/2009 12:13:37 PM , Rating: 2
Spivonious said:
quote:
Now, you could argue that giving people new cars is providing for the general welfare, but I doubt the founders would agree with you. I think they meant providing safe food, safe medicine, licensing doctors, etc.


problem

quote:
Now, you could argue that giving people new cars is providing for the general welfare, but I doubt the founders would agree with you. I think they meant ensuring the safety of the food suppy, medicine, and setting standards for the licensing of doctors, etc.


there.. fixed it


RE: Vote buying
By metasin on 7/31/2009 12:51:56 PM , Rating: 4
This clause in the preamble is so misunderstood. The founders were trying to convey that the Constitution was written in order to promote the general welfare of the US. To try and argue that powers not outlined in the Constitution can "fall" under this line is a complete misuse of the language and intent.
Why would the founders write such a specific and detailed document clearly defining the limited duties of the federal government and then put such a vague "catch all" statement in there? The answer is they did not. Following the limited scope of government as outlined in the Constitution in and of itself promotes the general welfare of the US.


RE: Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/2009 1:40:23 PM , Rating: 2
You assume that the founders were perfect beings. The founders were very focused on protecting one's rights, such as liberty and life, and yet they owned slaves.


RE: Vote buying
By Spivonious on 7/31/2009 3:54:12 PM , Rating: 2
That's not true. Many of the founders were strongly against slavery. But they realized that to get the Constitution adopted they had to compromise, and the Southern states would have never signed the Constitution if it had outlawed slavery.


RE: Vote buying
By MrBungle123 on 7/31/2009 12:05:53 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
The constitution doesn't specifically give the right for the government to do an income tax... are you arguing that all income tax should be abolished b/c the constitution doesn't explicitly state that it should exist?


The income tax shouldn’t exist. It should be abolished, the IRS done away with and the whole mess all 70 odd thousand pages of tax code thrown in the trash and replaced with this:

All goods and services performed or produced for profit shall be subject to a 15% federal sales tax.

That’s it, no giant bureaucracy, no corporate income tax since consumers end up paying it anyway, no favoritism to one group or another, no more this or that group doesn't pay their "fair" share, all that goes away... you buy something you pay tax... and we should make it as hard to change the rate as it is to get a constitutional amendment to keep the size of the federal government in check. Oh wait... this would require the government to give up power by ending the congressional micro-management of our economy... sigh.


RE: Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/2009 12:13:43 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The income tax shouldn’t exist

You say that it shouldn't exist, yet you propose an alternate income tax.

Personally, I agree with you that a flat tax would be much fairer, and that the current tax code is ridiculous.

However, to say that an income tax shouldn't exist and then propose an income tax seems silly. It seems like you're upset with the implementation, not with the tax itself.


RE: Vote buying
By MrBungle123 on 7/31/2009 12:42:21 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
You say that it shouldn't exist, yet you propose an alternate income tax.


I oppose an income tax and propose a sales tax to replace it. There is a big difference between a income and as sales tax. A progressive income tax like we have now punishes success by ramping up the percentage of income paid in taxes as income increases where a sales tax does not.


RE: Vote buying
By zombiexl on 7/31/2009 1:00:27 PM , Rating: 2
I agree the income tax system is a joke. My fear with a national sales tax (liek the fair tax) is that once the government has the control they will increase the tax rate whenever they feel like it.

Governemnt needs to curb their spending (at all levels). Also a tax (like the fair tax) that gives the government the same amount of money to play with does nothing to address their over-spending.

In theory I agree with the fair tax, but I believe it needs to be at a lower rate and the law should make it so that the rate is not be allowed to be changed without a strong majority (75%+) vote by the house and senate.


RE: Vote buying
By wempa on 7/31/2009 12:43:19 PM , Rating: 2
He proposed a sales tax, not an income tax.


RE: Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/2009 1:22:54 PM , Rating: 1
A sales tax is the exact same thing as an income tax. Does it really make a difference if the person who provides the service pays the tax, vs the person who purchases the service?

Think about it.


RE: Vote buying
By captainpierce on 7/31/2009 1:29:11 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
A sales tax is the exact same thing as an income tax. Does it really make a difference if the person who provides the service pays the tax, vs the person who purchases the service?


Because the sales tax exempts all savings and investment, the double taxation problem would be eliminated. Because the sales tax is a single flat rate, the disincentive effects from high marginal rates would be eliminated.


RE: Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/2009 1:43:23 PM , Rating: 1
Well, now you're adding exemptions. I could easily add exemptions to an income tax to have the same effect.

However, without any exemptions, credits, floors, etc... a sales tax is identical to an income tax.


RE: Vote buying
By captainpierce on 7/31/2009 2:07:30 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Well, now you're adding exemptions. I could easily add exemptions to an income tax to have the same effect.


Add all the exemptions you want, you still have double taxation. Once when it's taken from your paycheck and again through capital gains. Consumption or sales tax would get rid of this double taxation.


RE: Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/2009 2:25:18 PM , Rating: 2
You have double taxation from capital gains as well when using a sales tax. When you buy your shares (or whatever else you'll get capital gains from), and when you purchase items with the money later on.


RE: Vote buying
By captainpierce on 7/31/2009 2:36:43 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
You have double taxation from capital gains as well when using a sales tax. When you buy your shares (or whatever else you'll get capital gains from), and when you purchase items with the money later on.


Ideally, there would be no cap gains tax with a flat consumption tax.


RE: Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/2009 2:38:01 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Ideally, there would be no cap gains tax with a flat consumption tax.

I agree with that. However, the income tax ideally would be structured in the same way as to avoid double taxation.


RE: Vote buying
By MrBungle123 on 7/31/2009 2:52:57 PM , Rating: 2
Murst,

Don't you see the sheer complexity of implementing an income tax with all of its deductions, and exemptions, and opportunities for abuse by those in power is exactly the problem with such a system. A sales tax is far simpler, far more elegant, and in the end far more effective at achieving the set goals as stated by the constituion.

When you get down to it the only reason for promoting an income tax over a consumption tax is that it allows a greater level of control over peoples lives than a consumption or sales tax. Taxes are a necessary evil, but a income tax is about pricing specific freedoms and liberties out of existence more than it is about being a "fair" method of government revenue generation.

Unless you are a government bureaucrat trying to cement in your own power there is nothing ideal about an income tax.


RE: Vote buying
By captainpierce on 7/31/2009 2:53:02 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I agree with that. However, the income tax ideally would be structured in the same way as to avoid double taxation.


I don't think income taxes are very efficient myself. But I'd take a flat rate income tax over the current system any day.


RE: Vote buying
By MrBungle123 on 7/31/2009 1:40:07 PM , Rating: 2
An income tax takes the money directly out of your earnings before you even get the funds from your employer. The amount taken is determined through a complex bureaucracy and deductions and adjustments are made by means of a massive tax code that gives the government the ability to promote or punish certain sectors of the economy based on the political leanings of the people writing the tax code. Additionally the system can function as a transfer of wealth program by offering "income tax refunds" and "tax credits" for certain behavior. It is the reason why people that pay very little in taxes (working at minimum wage part time) can collect $9000 "tax refunds" (several times what they paid into the system) at the end of year by having kids.

A sales tax takes a little off the top of every sale and taxes consumption at a flat rate ensuring that all tax payers are taxed at the same rate across the income spectrum, it also makes the tax more "visible" to consumers as they are reminded of the cost of the federal government every time they buy something.

BIG difference.


RE: Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/2009 1:45:14 PM , Rating: 2
If you read through the other posts in this thread, you'll see that I'm not comparing the current income tax to a sales tax. Yes, with all the garbage in the tax code, it is not the same thing.

However, assuming that you always pay a 15% sales tax, or you always pay a 15% income tax, there is no difference between one and the other.


RE: Vote buying
By MrBungle123 on 7/31/2009 2:24:22 PM , Rating: 2
Even assuming a flat rate income tax that is free of bureaucartic BS [not in place now and never going to happen] as you seem to be doing there is still a large difference between an income and sales tax.

With an income tax I take less money home i never see the money and can never use it to my benefit. With a sales tax I can take home all of my money, put the money I would otherwise be paying in income tax and invest it or put it in a savings account and collect interest on it before I use it to buy goods/services and consequently pay taxes on it.

One method reduces my income both from my job and from my investment earnings by reducing their size since i have less to invest and taxing any income made on them, the other makes things cost a little more. The latter costs me and everyone else less money. The amount may seem insignificant on a month to month scale but would be substantial over time.


RE: Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/2009 2:26:56 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
With a sales tax I can take home all of my money, put the money I would otherwise be paying in income tax and invest it

How are you going to invest it w/o buying anything? Buy shares...then pay a sales tax on them. Remember, no exemptions.


RE: Vote buying
By MrBungle123 on 7/31/2009 4:18:47 PM , Rating: 2
Thats why the tax only applies to thing sold for a profit, if i sell you part of a company its done to get cash not directly for the generation of profit. The investor buys a share of the companies future profits and the company sells off part of its share of future profits so they can have cash now. Sales tax would not apply.


RE: Vote buying
By captainpierce on 7/31/2009 1:05:33 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The constitution doesn't specifically give the right for the government to do an income tax... are you arguing that all income tax should be abolished b/c the constitution doesn't explicitly state that it should exist?


That is why it can be amended through Article V, which it was for income taxes. My question to you is: Has the Constitution been amended to permit Congress to manage the economy? Of course, I'd also like to ask members of the Supreme Court that as well.

quote:
In any case, such arguments are pretty much pointless, since it has been established that such government actions are within its power.


I'd bet money you're referring to the general welfare clause to support your argument. Thomas Jefferson said, "Congress has not unlimited powers to provide for the general welfare, but only those specifically enumerated." That means only those powers listed.


RE: Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/2009 1:36:51 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Has the Constitution been amended to permit Congress to manage the economy?

It doesn't need to be amended. It is very clear in the constitution must protect one's right to property. Since money is property (and virtually all other property has monetary value), it wouldn't be a stretch to assume that the government is responsible for managing the economy.


RE: Vote buying
By captainpierce on 7/31/2009 1:57:00 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
It doesn't need to be amended. It is very clear in the constitution must protect one's right to property. Since money is property (and virtually all other property has monetary value), it wouldn't be a stretch to assume that the government is responsible for managing the economy.


The laws on property were to limit what gov't could do(ie, the takings clause), not empower it to manage our economy.


RE: Vote buying
By Murst on 7/31/2009 2:08:57 PM , Rating: 2
Well now... that's just your interpretation of it :)

I could easily interpret "no person shall be deprived of life, liberty or property" as justification for the government to manage the economy. How could the government prevent someone from depriving you of your money if the government cannot manage the value of money?


RE: Vote buying
By captainpierce on 7/31/2009 2:49:24 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Well now... that's just your interpretation of it :)


If it can be interpreted different ways then it's essentially meaningless.

quote:
I could easily interpret "no person shall be deprived of life, liberty or property" as justification for the government to manage the economy. How could the government prevent someone from depriving you of your money if the government cannot manage the value of money?


The government doesn't even manage the value of money now. That's done by the Federal Reserve, which is a quasi-public central bank with the chairman appointed by the president and the members by private banks. When it comes to ownership, the Fed is mostly private. The gov't should be coining our money, in accord with the constitution, but it doesn't.

If the gov't really wanted to protect our liberties, it would abolish the Central Bank, which deprives us of the value of our labor through inflating the currency.


RE: Vote buying
By andrinoaa on 7/31/2009 9:38:54 PM , Rating: 2
yeh, yeh ,yeh, lets all live back in the medievil times and scrap any sense of mutual responsibility. Don't like it, go and live in mexico, I'm sure some "liberal" cartel will let you survive on your own, NOT!


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