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Romney says the new standards are "extreme," but Obama disagrees

This week was particularly monumental for the auto industry as the Obama administration finalized the new Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards. The new rules have faced some criticism, but President Barack Obama isn’t backing down.
 
The criticism comes from Obama’s presidential election opponent Mitt Romney, who believes there is a better method of increasing fuel economy than changing CAFE standards.

"Just yesterday, my opponent called my position on fuel efficiency standards extreme," said Obama. "It doesn't seem extreme to me to want to build more fuel efficient cars. Maybe the steam engine is more his speed."

Obama further added that the new CAFE standards will allow U.S. drivers to fill up their gas tanks "half as often." But when the new rules were finalized Tuesday, Romney failed to see the benefit to driving citizens. 

"Governor Romney opposes the extreme standards that President Obama has imposed, which will limit the choices available to American families," said Andrea Saul, Romney spokeswoman. "The president tells voters that his regulations will save them thousands of dollars at the pump, but always forgets to mention that the savings will be wiped out by having to pay thousands of dollars more upfront for unproven technology that they may not even want."


The new fuel efficiency standards for 2017-2025 will cost the auto industry $157.3 billion and add an average of $2,000 extra to the sticker price of new autos.

While some are clearly unhappy with the new standards, others are seeing added benefits. Honda, for example, was delighted to see that the standards provided extra credits for those selling natural gas-powered vehicles. Tesla also jumped on the CAFE bandwagon when it learned that it could sell any credits for surpassing the standards to companies that haven't.

The CAFE standards will raise the average fuel efficiency of cars and light trucks to 54.5 mpg by model year 2025. These new standards, which were created by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOTs) National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), were based off of the Obama Administration's first standards raised average fuel efficiency to 35.5 mpg by 2016. It was intended for cars and light trucks during model years 2011-2016.

The 54.5 mpg CAFE standard aims to save consumers more than $1.7 trillion at the gas pump, cut U.S. oil consumption by 12 billion barrels, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 6 billion metric tons over the course of the program, and encourage the adoption of autos like electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrids. 

Source: The Detroit News



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54 MPG?
By djdjohnson on 8/30/12, Rating: 0
RE: 54 MPG?
By nick2000 on 8/30/2012 8:01:49 PM , Rating: 3
I had a ford focus break turbo diesel that could do 55mpg and was doing 0-60 in about 10s...
Not a sports car but usable.


RE: 54 MPG?
By Granseth on 8/30/2012 8:42:48 PM , Rating: 5
It's the same for my Renault Megane. About 55mpg for mixed driving, and about 11s 0-100km/h. But it's a turbo diesel, not a gasoline car and I think there will be some years before gas-cars can catch up to diesel.

And those complaining about extra cost are thinking that USA is the only country that matters, but the fact is that mostly every other country is trying to achieve similar goals and the engine manufacturers are putting the research (and the bill) into more fuel-efficient cars no matter what USA does or does not.

And a second part that critics saying that this will cost more for the consumers are forgetting is that oil is a limited resource. The more we use, the more the oil companies can push the prices upwards, and the more it will cost us consumers in the long run.


RE: 54 MPG?
By 91TTZ on 8/31/2012 12:49:23 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
And those complaining about extra cost are thinking that USA is the only country that matters, but the fact is that mostly every other country is trying to achieve similar goals and the engine manufacturers are putting the research (and the bill) into more fuel-efficient cars no matter what USA does or does not.


Exactly.

Here in the US people often use changes in the industry to promote a political agenda that they have. They're claiming that the increased fuel economy is because of their favorite politician's policies when in actuality the increases are due to gains in technology that have been occurring independently of our country's policies.

In other words, if Ford begins selling a small, fuel efficient car in the US we often have people claiming it's because of (insert favorite politician here)'s policies and make no mention of the fact that those developments have been occurring over the past decades while the car was being sold in Europe.


RE: 54 MPG?
By Keeir on 8/31/12, Rating: 0
RE: 54 MPG?
By michael67 on 9/1/2012 5:05:56 PM , Rating: 3
Sigh. Americans.

Only thinking of the short term!

But i agree maybe CAFE is not the best way to have more fuel efficient cars, just up the price of a gallon!

I pay 15nok/L or about $10 per gallon her in Norway, and yes its a pain but we don't have any need for a CAFE standard, you just wane buy a efficient car, as a Doge RAM for daily use would just bankrupt you.
But then, how really needs a RAM for daily use???

The problem is that most people in the US think that, hybrid and specially EV's, are only for tree-hugers!

I own a Lexus GS450h, Jaguar XJS 6L V12, and a Skyline R33, so you properly could say, i like cars.
(Got both the jag and the R33 far from mint condition and fixed them in my spare time, as for the Lexus, that one is going to be used till it it the end of its days)
Next to that i have a Honda CB500, that i use when it dose not rain, to get me quick true traffic.

But me and my family (8 drivers total), we own now 3 Think City EVs, and i use the EV the most, as 90% of the trips are like 1 to 5 miles and 20 miles max, and it saves us literately thousands of dollars a year in petrol cost, road tax and insurance.

And even do they are not the most comfortable of cars, they are not really bad aider to drive, certainly not for the short trips they are meant for.

All in all, i drive +95% of the time in the EV's or on the motor, and have no real problem with the $10/gallon price of fuel, you just have to learn how to buy the right one's and use them efficient.

And i also tried out a Leave it drives the same as a Yaris, i would seriously consider one new or secondhand!


RE: 54 MPG?
By Zoomer on 9/2/2012 11:43:43 AM , Rating: 2
Upping the price of a gallon is probably the best way. It encourages these who drive more - and thus see more benefit from higher mileage vehicles - to buy more efficient vehicles, while these who would drive a few thousand miles in as many years can buy these inefficient cars which are cheaper, simpler, less likely to break, while having minimal impact on oil consumption.


RE: 54 MPG?
By michael67 on 9/2/2012 5:59:05 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
while these who would drive a few thousand miles in as many years can buy these inefficient cars which are cheaper, simpler, less likely to break

For example the German VW Polo 1.6 TSI diesel 66kW/90pk dose 64 US mpg, and is considered here one of the most reliable cars in the EU. (the Polo is the same size as a Toyota Yaris)

But because its considered to small for the US market its not for sale in the US, next to that it would properly brake down in the US, because of the low grade diesel you guys using.

So mandating that the quality of diesel would be improved would also be beneficial for better fuel consumption, as EU diesels are way more efficient then US diesels.

And you have a hard time noticing that your driving a diesels now a days, except in your wallet!

What you also have here is many people owning 2 cars, one small one for daily use, and a big one for special or holidays use.
And you have even special insurance, ware insure your second car for almost noting extra.


RE: 54 MPG?
By GotThumbs on 9/5/2012 9:23:16 AM , Rating: 2
One of the easiest and fastest solutions to increasing the nations average MPG is to do exactly what was done in the 70's, but Americans would fight and kick all the way.

Reduce AND enforce current speed limits. If everyone would try driving no faster than 55mph or 60mph for two tank fulls...they would see a huge increase in their average mpg.

I have a 1 ton Quad-cab cummins powered Dodge Ram and consistently average between 25 and 26 mpg. Most drivers would probably get around 15 mpg in the same truck. Everyone talks about 0-60 times, but it's NOT a dragster your driving...so why continue to focus on this insignificant stat...because most Americans choose to ignore the obvious and continue to listen to the marketing and sales-people. We're seeing the US become a nation ruled by fools who choose to ignore the inevitable train wreck that has already hit Greece.


RE: 54 MPG?
By dubldwn on 8/30/2012 8:04:34 PM , Rating: 2
EPA equivalent MPG
By dubldwn on 1/18/2012 11:23:14 AM , Rating: 3
@Tiffany could you and your colleagues make it a point to note in these articles that 54.5 mpg CAFE is equivalent to 36 mpg combined EPA?

Thanks!


RE: 54 MPG?
By Philippine Mango on 8/30/2012 9:37:00 PM , Rating: 2
54mpg CAFE, which is about 40mpg in real world driving... Also if electric vehicles become common place, then these standards will become a joke and every vehicle will surpass the standards without breaking a sweat. Tesla Model S weighs like 2 tons and gets 89mpge...


RE: 54 MPG?
By mcnabney on 8/30/2012 10:56:45 PM , Rating: 2
Since you are dumb I will type s l o w l y.

CAFE involves averages. If Chevy sells 25k Volts (100mpg equivalent) and 50k SUVs (25mpg) - their CAFE average is 50mpg even though 2/3 of the cars were only halfway to the standard.


RE: 54 MPG?
By Philippine Mango on 8/30/2012 11:50:25 PM , Rating: 3
Not entirely true, they actually use a harmonic mean in order to calculate the fleet fuel economy.


RE: 54 MPG?
By probedb on 8/31/2012 9:03:05 AM , Rating: 2
You need to look outside the US.


ok
By Joz on 8/30/2012 5:38:51 PM , Rating: 2
time to check romney's accounts for payments from big oil?




RE: ok
By eagle470 on 8/30/2012 5:54:16 PM , Rating: 2
http://www.edmunds.com/fuel-economy/6-ways-new-caf...

Maybe you need to do some reading else where. No government decision should force anything on anyone. The market will make it's own decisions and 'Big oil' will fall by the way side one way or another.

It's also pretty stupid to take food out of the supply and piss it away as fuel. What do we do during a famine? Oh wait...it's already happening. Everything from Plastics (yes, some are made with corn), to food for us and for starving countries, will go up in price. How about we burn up what oil there is left and that will force the market to move on. The government can afford to subsidize this crap, nor should they. It's called market pressure and any 101 econ class can explain it.


RE: ok
By Murst on 8/30/2012 6:00:51 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
No government decision should force anything on anyone

So I guess you would have been against mandatory smallpox vaccines.


RE: ok
By ppardee on 8/30/2012 8:28:28 PM , Rating: 2
So its your position that the government elected by the people knows what is better for the people than the people who elected them in the first place?

You can't have partial freedom. Either you're free or you're enslaved with varying degrees of privilege.


RE: ok
By thirdshop on 8/31/2012 9:56:54 AM , Rating: 2
Than why have a government?


Free market fantasies
By tensor9 on 8/30/2012 9:57:14 PM , Rating: 5
In this thread, more mindless adoration of the free market.

Your head is quite firmly up your ass if you believe that unregulated free markets produce the best results for society.

The free market is basically worshiped as a deity in this country. It's humorous because all the worshipers have never actually SEEN a truly free market. That's because they self destruct, and no "free market" has ever existed for any significant period of time. There is ALWAYS (in first world countries) State intervention that either allows the market to exist or keeps it from destroying itself.




RE: Free market fantasies
By Uncle on 8/30/12, Rating: 0
RE: Free market fantasies
By Ringold on 8/31/2012 2:05:52 AM , Rating: 1
Yep. Singapore man, flying apart at the seems. Chaos, women throwing their babies off the tops of skyscrapers, insanity. I just saw a woman utter "If only I had the same rights as the average Cuban!" before leaping to her own death.

Greece though! And Italy, Spain! Now there are some beacons of success in the world! Look at all those civilized indignatos, these are such prosperous, successful nations that their young college graduates apparently need not even work any more! Compare that to the wretched United States, which didn't even begin to leave the swamps of the Eastern seaboard until the New Deal.

Oh, wait.


RE: Free market fantasies
By TSS on 8/31/2012 8:56:47 AM , Rating: 2
If you think Singapore is unregulated you're a fool (they just don't tax very much). They are fools as well, since they've stored the majority of their wealth in europian banks.

Anyways, there already exist a completly free and unregulated market. the $740 trillion derivatives market. And we all know how that turned out (just a recap so far: the US morgage crisis, financial crisis, europian sovereign crisis, housing bubbles across the world, can all be traced back to derivates).

What we need is a Competent government establishing a Competent framework for Competent traders to trade within. Then it needs to be monitored by Competent overseers paid for by the that government, with the authority to intervene when a trader crosses outside of the framework set in place. Right now none of our nations have any of those things.


The free market has worked before
By aftlizard on 8/30/2012 10:54:58 PM , Rating: 2
Why not now? In the seventies with stagflation, OPEC boycott, gas shortages etc..the US Big 3 was either to slow to react believing the consumers would never go for a small fuel efficient vehicle or produced ugly vehicles that became the butt of jokes for decades. Enter the Japanese with their small stylish fuel efficient vehicles and the dynamic changed. It's nice to give innovation a push now and then but the reality is the consumer is smart. The consumer will budget their vehicles to their needs and the car companies have historically pushed each other to meet those needs. Increasing government standards only moves up the timeline of when these technologies hit the street, sometimes when they aren't quite ready.




RE: The free market has worked before
By Rukkian on 8/31/2012 10:28:02 AM , Rating: 2
I agree with most of what you said, except for "the consumer is smart". Most people are idiots who don't worry about tomorrow.


By mindless1 on 9/2/2012 5:58:41 PM , Rating: 2
True, people who think about the future don't want to pay several thousand dollars more for unreliable new tech that costs far more to service and repair as well as far more for silly ipod docks and non-ergonomic touchscreens.

Mark my words. Anyone truly interested in fuel economy will plan their trips, their residence proximity to work, and have a lower total cost of ownership buying cars with tech from 10-15 years ago than from the cars we'll see once new CAFE standards take effect. Some will make environmental claims but KEEPING a car and repairing it is more environmentally friendly than replacing and adding to landfills. Cars produce fewer emissions than most industries or even most people's gas powered lawn equipment.


By kamiller422 on 8/30/2012 8:15:30 PM , Rating: 2
Obama is going to take credit for rising average MPG due to vehicles which began development before he took office. I am sure the media will set the record straight.




car R&D
By MadMan007 on 8/30/2012 8:20:59 PM , Rating: 2
I'd rather see car companies put R&D money into something like this than trivial things like touchscreen info-tainment systems and the like.

Aside from the most basic stripper models cars are pretty damn good these days. What's wrong with looking to focus engineering the basics instead of the superfluous?




Zero Sum
By Sigma009 on 8/30/2012 11:27:50 PM , Rating: 2
Nothing Government forces on the market place comes without severe costs--in this case, deadly ones.

http://www.economicsforeverybody.com/2012/08/deadl...

Weight of the vehicle was the first thing to go when these mandates were created, with more mass dropped with each increase in the CAFE standards.

You want better fuel economy?
Replace ethanol (Which requires thousands of gallons of water on top of the several gallons of diesel to produce just ONE gallon of ethanol)
with methanol (which is readily produced from waste) better yet butanol (which isn't hygroscopic).

(The reason why car and oil companies won't? Idiotic EPA regulations http://www.nationalreview.com/blogs/print/314369)

How about using Compressed Natural Gas for medium and heavy Duty trucks and SUVs?

Want to decrease our dependence on foreign oil? (and thereby reduce the petroleum burned to ship it to US)
Keystone XL pipeline and allow for the creation of new refineries.

There are a thousand ways for the government to increase fuel economy-- by simply removing their overly large nose from where it simply has no place being.

Removing the CAFE standards would actually be helpful in that regard-- it would free up money used to cripple vehicles fleet-wide to meet some insane government fiat for advanced R&D in fuel economy and reduce the blood on the roads to boot.




GOOGLE
By faizyab on 8/31/2012 6:54:02 PM , Rating: 2
check out whats going on between apple and google. visit this site
http://sevencolourgossips.wordpress.com/2012/09/01...




Kill the EPA
By TheJian on 9/20/2012 3:59:58 AM , Rating: 2
They only hurt our economy and pay off Green friends. Wasted cash. Oil/gas would be super cheap once Romney is elected and the drill baby drill starts. We will finally get off arab's oil tit. This is exactly why they just said they'll pump out more for us in Saudi Arabia. They understand the war on oil in this country will end if Romney gets in, thus killing their oil barrel prices...LOL. So they need another 4 years and Obama's green crap or they'll be in for a world of hurt shortly. There is a reason Kharma costs $100K. These things are a ripoff and can't be made cheaply even OUT of the country by finland :) Though they did have the "idea" they'd try to build on here in 2013/2014 for $45K, which none of us can afford in this economy anyway.

There is a reason this crap needs govt funding too. AS no GOOD business man (Romney types) will ever fund a project that is already a LOSER before the first $1 is spent. Their own agency told them batteries would be beaten to death by china prices 2 years before any of this started. They weren't wrong. But hey, Al Gore has made $100mil on this climate crap. That's good right?...LOL. Kill green ideas that can't be funded by a PRIVATE company and we'll start saving a lot of money. If private industry won't touch it, it can't be done without us footing the bill. These projects will lose money until we remove the prick forcing them down our throats for his friends.




seriously?
By excrucio on 8/30/2012 8:55:28 PM , Rating: 2
Seriously people? Whats bad about having a strict standard for 2025 of 54.5mpg? Shit.. I think that's too damn slow! But i understand there is R&D that must go into it.

Sure the average MPG has been growing over the years, but let's be frank...we have the technology to do almost anything we please, and we are sitting on a average of what..27mpg highway?

Take Formula 1 for example, they have pushed engine reliability to its limits, they have improved safety incredibly since the early 90's. A lot of their inventions went into road cars. Why can't we tell these car companies to push for better fuel standards? I don't want to be paying 50 dollars for a freaking gallon of gas...ever. I don't even want to pay 4 dollars for 93 octane.

The idea is also to beat 54mpg before 2025. The idea is to run on some type of energy that is infinite if possible. We are too comfortable, time to really invest in a better future. All these old farts all they care is wealth and the present, screw the kids and the future, right?

This may have been a rant, but come on. Time to innovate, and innovate fast.




RE: seriously?
By Beenthere on 8/30/12, Rating: -1
Doesn't really matter
By tayb on 8/31/2012 12:23:05 PM , Rating: 1
I'm not a fan of regulation of the vehicle market but I don't think CAFE standards will effect anything because I believe the market would have arrived there regardless. Just look at the current cars in production as a result of demand. Prius, C-Max, hybrid variants of nearly every vehicle, clean diesels, electric cars, etc. Imagine the demand when gas prices are approaching $6/gallon instead of $4/gallon? People are going to stop buying trucks and SUVs unless they truly need them because they will no longer be able to afford to drive them. This was going to happen with or without CAFE.

So, yeah, we can all bitch and moan at Obama even though CAFE has existed for three decades and a one George Bush passed his own increases just a few short years ago but in reality the "dooms day" scenario the GOP keeps playing out isn't going to happen.




What is this wanting business?
By KFZ on 9/1/2012 3:28:38 AM , Rating: 1
"It doesn't seem extreme to me to want to build more fuel efficient cars."

It doesn't seem extreme to me that you quit smoking, golfing, fundraising and eating like a pig so you are more efficient but yet there's no federal agency telling you how to run your life.

..yet.




Bama is a crackpot IMO...
By Beenthere on 8/30/12, Rating: 0
Clueless
By Reclaimer77 on 8/30/12, Rating: -1
RE: Clueless
By Murst on 8/30/2012 6:05:01 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
Fuel economy has steadily increased without mandates or laws for decades now

I'm not really sure if CAFE standards are the way to go or not, but the standards have been in place since 1975. I suppose you could have a very broad definition of "now".


RE: Clueless
By Reclaimer77 on 8/30/12, Rating: 0
RE: Clueless
By MadMan007 on 8/30/2012 8:22:55 PM , Rating: 1
Wrong, CAFE has been increased slowly but steadily over the years: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CAFE#Standards_by_mod...


RE: Clueless
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 8/30/2012 8:27:49 PM , Rating: 5
Are we looking at the same chart? Passenger car CAFE was stuck at 27.5 for TWO DECADES!


RE: Clueless
By MadMan007 on 8/31/2012 6:35:35 AM , Rating: 1
Yup, CAFE sure did stay the same for 20 years. That doesn't mean it never went up. What's also missing is data on actual fleet fuel economy during that flat stretch. Did it go up or not? Just because some vehicles got more fuel efficient doesn't mean the average went up. That data would be useful to see whether CAFE actually affects average fuel economy or not.

If you can find it, please post!


RE: Clueless
By MadMan007 on 8/31/2012 6:41:59 AM , Rating: 2
Oh, one other thing to note: gas guzzler tax. It's been around since 1978 (shortly after CAFE) but was most recently modified in 1991...interestingly that's right at the start of the 20 years of flat CAFE requirements for passenger vehicles. I doubt that's a coincidence.


RE: Clueless
By Reclaimer77 on 8/30/2012 8:32:46 PM , Rating: 3
Slow and steady? Those increases are so mild as to be nearly irrelevant. And there are entire DECADES where they didn't increase at all. The natural progression of MPG improvements by the manufacturers FAR outpace those "requirements". That's my entire point. Not wrong, FACT.

Notice that hybrids were being developed during the period where CAFE standards remained the same for nearly TWENTY years. I mean come on, nuff said. End of discussion honestly.

Now you can try to make the argument that a 10% CAFE increase somehow lead to 30+% fleet MPG improvements, you're welcome to try. But I don't buy it.

Fuel prices and market forces have FAR more of an impact on the buying trends than any Federal regulation. Take the SUV craze of the early 2000's for example. When fuel prices started to spike, people were dropping them like they were stolen. Capitalism is self-balancing that way.


RE: Clueless
By Granseth on 8/30/2012 8:45:14 PM , Rating: 1
except that capitalism is reactive, not proactive. There might sometimes be better to have some regulations to get a head start.


RE: Clueless
By FITCamaro on 8/30/2012 11:02:21 PM , Rating: 1
When the government actually has the authority to do it you might have a valid point.

Right now, they lack the authority. But we don't have enough politicians who fight against this stuff to stop them from exceeding their authority.


RE: Clueless
By teldar on 8/30/2012 10:05:49 PM , Rating: 2
No. I've always planned car purchase at least in part on mileage. Just because not everyone does is no reason to force them to.


RE: Clueless
By StevoLincolnite on 8/30/2012 11:38:44 PM , Rating: 2
I used to do the same.
Then I realized I could have the best of both worlds by having a dual fuel vehicle that ran Petrol and LPG gas.
LPG Gas is almost half the price, slightly less economy, but it is ohhhh sooo cheap here, cleaner too!


RE: Clueless
By Ringold on 8/30/12, Rating: 0
RE: Clueless
By Paj on 8/31/2012 8:55:23 AM , Rating: 2
You're correct in your examples, but hopelessly incorrect in your conclusion.

Germany is currently the strongest economy in Europe, and the fourth largest in the world, after being defeated in two world wars, having to rebuild an entire industrial base and economy from scratch in just 70 years, and unify an ideologically divided country.

How do you think they did that? Through massive PUBLIC investment into Germany's infrastructure, currency reform, and loosening of regulation. This is despite having their industrial capacity dismantled as punishment for the war.

The point is, it was through a huge, collective effort and collaboration between GOVERNMENT and INDUSTRY that this succeeded. There is no silver bullet to economic recovery. Austerity doesnt work - as every European economy can clearly demonstrate. Massive public investment on its own, without improving efficiency and bureaucracy, wont work either. But having a government work hand in hand with industry, encouraging and supporting investment, creation of industries, that gets economies moving. History has shown time and time again that this works.

Both sides of the ideological spectrum need to get over their knee-jerk opposition to alternating theories, and meet each other in the middle. Mix capitalism and socialism. Improve regulation in some areas, reduce it in others. Base it on historical examples and evidence, not ideology.


RE: Clueless
By Reclaimer77 on 8/31/2012 9:30:56 AM , Rating: 2
Paj accepting your premise for arguments sake about Germany, would you say the Obama Administration can objectively be said to have been working "hand in hand" with our Industrial sector?

This isn't collaboration, it's fascism. In this case the automakers begged Obama for a compromise. Did he listen? Does he ever?

quote:
Mix capitalism and socialism.


We already have. This isn't a purely capitalist country, and hasn't been in nearly a century.


RE: Clueless
By Rukkian on 8/31/2012 9:54:18 AM , Rating: 2
While I do not agree with the regulation, I do not think you are correct in this. The automakers were part of setting up the standards. I think that the only reason they are publicly putting up a problem with it is to say they fought to keep prices low, so when they do raise prices, they can blame it on Obama.

Buick is now making e-assist standard on the regal at a cost of $2k, and they can blame it all on cafe.


RE: Clueless
By Reclaimer77 on 8/31/2012 4:44:50 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The automakers were part of setting up the standards.


Yes much like a child is a "part" of the process of being grounded by a parent. We're grounding you and this is why. Oh you don't like it? Tough cookies, you're grounded anyway, but thank you for sharing your concerns.

There's slews of documentation from business leaders who have been "invited" by Obama to "share" their views on something. It's a complete waste of time because he just goes ahead with his plans regardless of any input or expertise they might give.

This situation is NOTHING like your example of Germany. There the Government actually worked with the industrial sector to BOOST Capitalism. There's a word for it: Wirtschaftswunder

http://www.moneyweek.com/news-and-charts/economics...


RE: Clueless
By KoS on 8/31/2012 9:51:40 AM , Rating: 2
Umm you have left out a few important points.

For one, among many, the billions put into Germany by the US to help rebuild the country after WW2. And Germany doesn't have to divert a ton of money to defense, since the US carries the burden.

Heck, we still partial prop-up the economy of Germany by having all those military bases and personnel there in country. It was sometime during the Clinton or Bush Admin there were talks about closing alot of those bases in Germany. The Germans were not happy, due to the hugh impact it would have had on their economy.

That magic of 70 years isn't quite as straight forward as you would want it to seem. Quite honestly Germany wouldnt' be where they are today if it wasn't for the help of the US.

Again, where did the money come from in the first place for the "massive public investment"?? From the private sector!! The market place, captalism.

Ahh the meeting in the middle crap. You don't meet people in the middle when their ideas are wrong to begin with.


RE: Clueless
By Paj on 9/3/2012 10:47:36 AM , Rating: 2
Germany's infrastructure was dismantled during the Marshall Plan. Billions were taken OUT of Germany, industrial patents were stolen, their manufacturing and infrastructure fell to 50% of 1938 levels, and the population began to starve. The allies actually charged the Germans 7 billion a year as occupation costs.

Fair pay for Hitler's work in WW2 perhaps, but thats for another debate. Eventually, the attitude did soften, and its estimated that Germany received about 1 billion over the course of the Plan, but the cost to industry and economy were incalculable.

It only began to pick up for them again in the 50s, mainly due to the work of their Finance Minister at the time, the creation of the Deutsch mark, and by joining the European Coal and Steel Community.

You're right that the US military presence is important for many small towns in the south, due to the ancillary service industries that sprang up to support the bases. But to say its 'propping up' the economy in any significant way doesn't really hold water.

You seem to think Im anti-capitalism. I'm not. I think a lot of elements of capitalism are necessary. What is needed (and what works) is balance, because the problems arent black and white, theyre infinite shades of grey.


RE: Clueless
By MZperX on 8/31/2012 1:01:07 PM , Rating: 2
Can you say "Marshall Plan"?


RE: Clueless
By Ringold on 8/31/2012 5:16:29 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
How do you think they did that? Through massive PUBLIC investment into Germany's infrastructure, currency reform, and loosening of regulation.


Nobody really denies roads are a good thing. However, you'd be the first person to ever to bring that up as why Germany is currently leading Europe. They all dumped tons of money in to those things. Greece has very nice public transport, I am told, and no lack of roads or infrastructure.

Germany leads because of its Mittelstand and a recent government history of forcing Germany to be competitive globally, not retreating and cowering behind trade barriers and government largesse the way France, Italy, Greece and others did.


RE: Clueless
By MadMan007 on 8/31/2012 6:17:46 AM , Rating: 2
Yup, it stayed the same for passenger cars for a long time. It did go up slowly for light trucks. Nonetheless that's different from your statement that CAFE never changed. If that were true, it would still be at 18.0 for passegner cars.

Now, time for some basic math: CAFE is currently 67% higher than the initial standard for passenger cars, for light trucks 'combined' it is 40% higher. Both those increases, remarkably, are higher than the 30% you apparently made up - significantly so in the case of passenger cars.

Those are simple, basic facts, not based on opinion or ideology. I know you hate everything the government does, aside perhaps from employing you, but why you are arguing when I was merely providing simple factual correction I don't understand.


RE: Clueless
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 8/30/2012 8:26:06 PM , Rating: 2
Reclaimer, I have a question for you. What's your opinion on a vehicle like the '13 Nissan Altima which gets 27/38 in its base (volume) configuration?

It's priced no higher than the previous generation model and its dramatic increase in mpg (23/32 for the previous gen) was a direct result of upcoming CAFE regulations according to Nissan engineers.

It's a win/win for the consumer. Big increase in fuel efficiency at no added cost.


RE: Clueless
By MechanicalTechie on 8/30/12, Rating: -1
RE: Clueless
By Targon on 8/30/2012 9:01:54 PM , Rating: 2
I don't object to the CAFE standards going up, but Ethanol reduces fuel economy, so acts AGAINST the improvements that auto companies have been working on. If they want to force CAFE, then kill the fracking Ethanol requirements and let us see the fuel economy that auto makers intend our cars to get.


RE: Clueless
By OoklaTheMok on 8/30/2012 9:13:23 PM , Rating: 2
Only problem is that apparently, adding a small amount of Ethanol, really helps to mitigate smog production.

Ethanol as a main fuel component? No way, it was never a good idea. I think it was really just a thing pushed by those who wanted to make money off of corn futures. I do think true bio-diesel is a good alternative, but not with the current pseudo-bio-diesel and the associtated price gouging. It costs less to make diesel, and even bio-diesel, but it costs more than gas... why?


RE: Clueless
By Rukkian on 8/31/2012 9:58:52 AM , Rating: 2
I would have no problem with ethanol if it came from a non-food source. Using farmland and crops to power cars is not a good idea, and is increasing the prices of pretty much everything we buy, and I live in Iowa where many people actually benefit from the high prices of corn.


RE: Clueless
By ppardee on 8/30/2012 8:56:48 PM , Rating: 2
If they were able to easily increase the gas mileage of the vehicle before, why didn't they?

The truth is that the increase in gas mileage required R&D, which had a cost. The MSRP of the vehicle didn't increase, but that doesn't mean that the efficiency increase didn't have any added cost. SOMEONE paid for it. The cost is ultimately passed on to the consumer directly or indirectly.

More importantly, when will this end? This 20% increase in fuel economy is great, but we'll quickly hit the point of diminishing returns. Going from 32 to 38 MPG saves half a gallon of fuel per 100 miles driven. The next half-gallon savings is at about 47 mpg, then 61 mpg, then 88, then 158mpg, then 769mpg... And then we can't save another half gallon of gas per 100 miles driven. My point is that it makes very little sense forcing MPG restrictions on already-efficient cars. We need to focus on the gas guzzlers.

But that's expensive and there is no market incentive for that to happen, which is why it hasn't. POTUS's preposterous position is pointless posturing. And it will cost quite a bit in the long run... But what should he care? He's got quite a pension starting in January.


RE: Clueless
By Reclaimer77 on 8/30/12, Rating: 0
RE: Clueless
By Philippine Mango on 8/30/2012 9:42:11 PM , Rating: 2
I could easily take a shower and make my parents happy and my neighbors want to invite me over to their house, but I choose not to because I'm lazy... Same sort of thinking. Once electric cars become plentiful, I think CAFE standards may become irrelevant but then again, I think history shows than people take the path of least resistance and if automakers can make electric vehicles that only get 30mpge, they'll do it, even if it's wasting energy in the most obvious, atrocious ways.


RE: Clueless
By Targon on 8/31/2012 10:20:29 PM , Rating: 2
You are looking at things from a perspective that the auto makers can just snap their fingers and magically improve fuel economy. It takes a combination of technologies to get the improvements we have seen in fuel economy over the past few years, and those technologies needed to be worked on and matured before they COULD be used properly.

Just look at fuel injection which leads to direct injection. You need computer power to make these two things work for example, and as things mature, new things become possible. On the flip side, hybid and full EV technologies require advances in battery technology to really make them a logical "every car will have one of those technologies". EVs won't take off until the range approaches at least 200 miles per charge, while hybrids will drop in cost as battery technology improves(batteries take less space and less weight if each battery cell holds far more power than they do today).

You do hit the nail on the head about the problems with CAFE, the laws of diminishing returns as the technology advances, so the idea that car makers can just snap their fingers and make improvements is again the big issue. Just throwing money at a problem does NOT make things happen, or we would have had cold fusion reactors and flying cars by now.


RE: Clueless
By Reclaimer77 on 8/30/12, Rating: -1
RE: Clueless
By sigmatau on 8/30/2012 9:38:24 PM , Rating: 1
You are such a fool. I can't believe I'm wasting my time on you. Most midsize cars will have much higher fuel economy in the next year or two. Even the Ford Fusion matches the Altima at about the same price. If you can't see that the car manufactures were dragging their feet then you need to wake the f up!


RE: Clueless
By Ringold on 8/30/2012 11:58:15 PM , Rating: 2
It just doesn't make logical sense for them all to drag their feet, if thats what they were doing. It's a classic prisoners dilemma; if just one automaker had the ability to significantly increase fuel efficiency at little to no extra cost, they were confronted with two options..

1) Hold the line in an illegal collusion (which would make Democrats wet their pants if they could prove) and make X dollars profit

2) Rape the first-mover advantage for everything its worth and make a multiple of X, possibly succeeding so well as to force competing firms to close shop forever.

Given that these are profit-maximizing firms, what is the liberal logic to hold tight to option 1? I'll point out, btw, that even the OPEC cartel is partly a myth, as almost all members under-report their production. Generally they all pump flat-out, except Saudi Arabia.

And before you jump to a conclusion, remember that some automakers are still relatively "foreign," and have no cultural or personal attachment that would make them hesitate to lay their competitors low if given the chance. I've no doubt if GM could destroy Hyundai, they wouldn't bat an eye.

So yes, let the leftist conspiracy logic flow forth.


RE: Clueless
By sigmatau on 8/31/2012 12:01:38 AM , Rating: 1
I don't bother with Reclaimer's lapdog.


RE: Clueless
By Ringold on 8/31/2012 1:37:44 AM , Rating: 3
Prisoners dilemma, a cornerstone in economics, a basic concept used at the introduction to all modern logical game theory, expounded upon from the bachelors level up to PhD research, yeah. Ignore logic, ignore that education you likely received. Lets just roll with unsupported supposition instead. Troll.


RE: Clueless
By thirdshop on 8/31/2012 9:39:03 AM , Rating: 2
The way the prisoners dilemma work is that both will be better off if neither prisoner says anything. However, studies show that the majority will jump at a perceived advantage and betray the other prisoner when presented with a "reduced" sentence by turning over their partner. What these studies show is people do not often do the logical thing but rather react to a perceived advantage.
What this works out to is that most manufacturers saw no advantage in basic R&D to make real improvements unless forced by outside pressures.


RE: Clueless
By Ringold on 8/31/2012 5:21:08 PM , Rating: 2
That's not the way the math works in this situation. By inaction as a whole, the industry could maintain the status quo, which is okay for mafia bosses with culturally established territories, ranks, etc.

But the first one to move in commerce as the advantage, as in war. This is obvious; if one automaker could make supposedly simple investments and turn the competition to dust, billions of dollars of pure profit stood to be made, along with perhaps a mindshare dominance in the public that could last for an entire generation.

Sig wouldn't offer a logical response because, like liberals and their conspiracy theories, it was a reaction based on an emotional gut reaction distaste for corporations. He could neither prove cartel-like behavior nor logically suggest why a company would shoot itself in the foot for the benefit of their competitors, and so far neither have you.


RE: Clueless
By Lord 666 on 8/30/2012 10:14:47 PM , Rating: 1
"A Government that governs least, governs best."

But Government did mandate 15ppm sulfur diesel and T2B5 for environmental reasons. The engineers adapted their designs and the diesel market is starting to thrive.

Another good example is safety features such as airbags and LATCH. Each year there are fewer mva casualties.


RE: Clueless
By FITCamaro on 8/31/2012 8:18:50 AM , Rating: 2
Government didn't need to mandate things like airbags to get automakers to adopt them. They were desired by consumers once they were safe to use. But what if, and lets go out on a limb here, as a free, independent adult I want to chose to buy a car without airbags because of the lower cost? You, along with government, tell me I shouldn't be able to.

But now we've gone past safety features into mandating convenience features.


RE: Clueless
By Lord 666 on 8/31/2012 11:41:56 AM , Rating: 2
My 06 TDI Jetta has the 4*4 option meaning it has rear side airbags. TPMS was an option back then and along with the package 2 trim level and built-in nav, it meant finding the exact car with the options I wanted in black came down to a selection of two cars in the US. Fast forward six years and the 2012 Passat (not just the TDI) at any trim level is not available with rear side airbags nor is the Jetta. That is a deal breaker for me.

So why would VW take a step backwards and no longer offer that option which was about $600? Its available in the A6, but the TDI A6 is not here yet. Likewise, as an independent adult, I am free to vote with my dollars and buy whatever I want. The MB E350 CDI comes to mind, but its only RWD and not AWD. So in all honesty, do not have any current options. The Jetta was just hit from behind with the two little ones in their car seats. No one got hurt and the car held up well. Thankfully my wife was driving and not me.

However, only by standardization and mandate does everyone at all price brackets benefit from the improved safety gear. If the average joe wants to save some money ($600 amoritized over 60 months works out to be $12 a month), there are better options than skimping on safety gear.


RE: Clueless
By mocyd on 8/30/2012 10:56:44 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
I think economy is a great thing. I do not, however, believe it's the role of the Government to be the arbiter of it. Nor is it necessary to do so.


Economy isn't going to get us off of foreign oil, or make an unfriendly, unstable nation that we depend on friendly and stable, leading to low gas prices.

Economy also won't get us off oil quickly in the event oil becomes an untenable resource. At best, the cost of gas will rise to the point where our economy can't function as it did, and it will suffer until economy slowly brings down the price of a new competing energy infrastructure. Economy will disrupt itself without forethought.

Economy isn't forward thinking. Economy doesn't care about catastrophes, national allegiance, or location of resources. It doesn't even care about its own smooth functioning as a whole- it only cares about profits where it can create them. Economy will cheat itself where it can, and even collapse integral, critical portions of itself unknowingly.


RE: Clueless
By Reclaimer77 on 8/31/2012 9:22:53 AM , Rating: 1
I meant fuel economy, clearly. The context I spoke was evident to anyone reading that NOT just looking for an excuse to slam and troll me.

Having said that, I obviously disagree with your Marxist view on economies as a whole. I believe you were inferring to Capitalism, and how it's a big pile of crap.

We're on foreign oil because there is a huge public demand for oil, and the more domestic production we cancel the more foreign oil we must purchase. Apparently this is some huge conspiracy by "greedy" big oil to *gasp* meet the demand of their customers! I know, how evil of them. They should just take the moral stance and close shop forever. You guys would love that.

quote:
Economy isn't forward thinking.


Well this is such an ignorant and stupid statement, where to even start. You Liberals truly believe Government is more noble and incorruptible and virtuous, and us dumb hicks just can't do anything ourselves don't you?

Not forward thinking? Did the Government make the computer you typed this on? Did the Government develop the vehicle you drive? The list goes on FOREVER. What the hell? Honestly open your eyes and look at the world.


RE: Clueless
By thirdshop on 8/31/2012 9:50:29 AM , Rating: 2
Having been in the military for 11 years, I have ample reason to not believe that the government is noble or incorruptible. However, that being said, your assertion that an unfettered free market is just, noble, and and makes all advances is also ignorant beyond belief. Historically the US did have a period of capitalism you dream of, it was called the Gilded Age and it occurred in the late 19th century. This is a period of time with rampant child labor, company towns, monopolistic cartels and corruption on the level of nations such as Nigeria and Mexico.
Truth is, both government and business are run by people with all their potential faults and prejudices. The best we can actually hope for is a dynamic tension where both sides can keep each other in check.
Is that really too difficult to see?


RE: Clueless
By Reclaimer77 on 8/31/2012 4:18:46 PM , Rating: 2
Why is it that every time a Conservative has an issue with clear over-regulation, someone accuses him of wanting completely unregulated laze fare Capitalism?

quote:
Historically the US did have a period of capitalism you dream of, it was called the Gilded Age and it occurred in the late 19th century. This is a period of time with rampant child labor, company towns, monopolistic cartels and corruption on the level of nations such as Nigeria and Mexico.


Well if we're playing that game, I can bring up several key examples of the ills of unfettered Socialism/Communism. Namely the various collapses of 20'th century Europe. The Soviet Union, China, etc etc.

In fact going by the Left's logic, the Soviet Union should have became the premier world power. What happened there? It sure wasn't "unchecked Capitalism" was it?

And is Cuba, in fact, really the "workers paradise" today? Why do so many South Americans flee to the United States when the "paradise" of Cuba is a stones throw away?

There is such a thing as too much regulation and Federal mandates. I believe we long ago crossed that point, and are just adding nail to proverbial nail to our countries coffin. Is that such a crazy opinion? There sure is ample evidence pointing to that situation.


RE: Clueless
By Ringold on 8/31/2012 5:30:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
And is Cuba, in fact, really the "workers paradise" today? Why do so many South Americans flee to the United States when the "paradise" of Cuba is a stones throw away?


I don't know if it made national news or not, but a boatload full of people from the workers paradise landed here in Florida a couple weeks back. From what I heard, they'd cobbled together their own boat, complete with an engine pulled from some 1950s or 60s car.

Remember too a couple years ago I95 came to a stop as a huge boatload landed and they were running across the highway.

Considering how many Cuban's die every year in their attempt to cross the Florida Straits, that must be a strange sort of paradise down there. :P


RE: Clueless
By Paj on 9/3/2012 11:02:51 AM , Rating: 2
A lot of Cuba problems come from the USA's unwillingness to trade with it. Closing off a market that size can really tank an economy.

Not saying Cuba is a paragon of virtue, because it surely isnt. Many freedoms are severely restricted, and some of their policies are repressive or just daft.

However, they do have one of the worlds best education systems, boasting a 99.8% literacy rate, and regularly outperform US schools. They also have a fantastic healthcare system, which is free for everyone. In fact Cubans have a higher life expectancy than people in the US.


RE: Clueless
By Ringold on 8/31/2012 5:26:44 PM , Rating: 2
Why is it the only history American Marxists seem to be aware of is the history that suits their agenda?

That same mostly unfettered capitalism existed from the start in 1776, and we went from a collection of farms and hunters and trappers to the worlds leading nation by the point you refer to.

Carter also had your world view, and how did that go?

How'd you manage 11 years in the military and have such disdain for the philosophies so dear to the hearts of the framers of the constitution you were paid to defend? Or was that all it was to you, a paycheck?


RE: Clueless
By 91TTZ on 8/31/2012 12:37:46 PM , Rating: 2
If you look at the historical fuel economy of cars you'll see that when the price of fuel rises, the fuel economy rises also.

I'm not so sure that the government regulations are what caused the rise in fuel economy. When gas last rose dramatically in the 1970's, the auto makers responded to customer demand by making fuel efficient cars. The Honda Civic from the late 70's got better fuel economy than the one from today. Of course technology has progressed so they could probably get better gas mileage if they decided to make the new one that small and light, but my point is that when fuel economy became the #1 selling point the manufacturers rose to the occasion and produced cars that got good gas mileage. Once fuel got cheaper they made the cars larger and heavier and they got poorer fuel economy, but only because that's what customers demanded.

Just for kicks let's take a look at a couple of cars that are about the same size and shape.

http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/noframes/12605.shtm...

http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/noframes/31696.shtm...

(I would have liked to compare the same exact car but manufacturers tend to move all their cars upmarket to make more profit on them. As a result they get larger and larger and no longer reside in the same class.)


RE: Clueless
By Keeir on 8/31/2012 9:49:52 PM , Rating: 2
This was never really answered.

What we are seeing right now is the result of "low hanging fruit"

One of the most low hanging fruit is rewriting your engine's response curve to certain inputs. (Hyundai, Ford, GM, BMW, Honda, I'm look right at you guys)

Another is taking a relatively slow/poor parts like tires, transmission/etc and using them in the place of what the marketplace used to prefer.

A third is making certain parts lightler/less robust.

I'd bet for the new Altima, we are seeing all the low hanging technology. The EPA is predicting an increase in fuel economy of ~18% between the 2013 and the 2012 models. But in practice fuel economy will likely be closer to 10% and then only if you the consumer continue to use the OEM or more efficient tires and take the hit on long term maintainability and usability.

This is not to say the 2013 equilibrium of design is a bad place to be. It might even be superior to the 2012 equilibrium of design. But to pretend like there was a 15% jump in fuel economy for free is hilarious. There is just not an evident upfrount additional cost.


RE: Clueless
By danobrega on 8/30/2012 9:01:16 PM , Rating: 2
RE: Clueless
By Ringold on 8/31/2012 1:52:41 AM , Rating: 2
People have been publishing those charts for decades, and for decades have been revising it so the apocalypse is just a little further out from the horizon, because it never quite pans out the way the doomsayers hope.

First of all, its relatively out of date. Around the time it was published, and since, it's been pretty well established that Brazil seems to be sitting on offshore oil reserves that may rival Saudi Arabia. Thats just Brazil.

Second, consider the vast areas of the world barely explored. Greenland is massive, but only in the last year or so has it tentatively allowed some exploration. The chart seems to lowball what Canada, the Nordic countries and Russia expects to be able to tap in the polar regions as well.

Third, consider that countries like Mexico have stagnant to falling output not because of any natural problems beyond the natural problems inherent in state-owned oil enterprises. If they didnt have to pay huge sums in dividends to their owning nations that compromise their ability to invest, and if they adopted private-sector technology and best-practices, existing oil producers need not see a steady decline for quite a long time.

Fourth, that chart totally disregards the fact that we aren't discovering as much oil as we could because, at least in the US, we don't allow ourselves to get at it. Huge swaths of the Gulf, Florida shores, and Eastern and Western seaboards are all off-limits. ANWR, frozen tundra that it is, is off limits. Deep water drilling, not off limits but subject to huge amounts of red tape. Unconventional oil sources are vehemently opposed at every turn. There's no reason oil production could boom in the US, if only we decided that it was a national priority.

And where in that chart is Africa? Lumped in with 'other countries'? I'd like to know how the hell it even pretends to wager a guess at African potential oil production, since most the continent has only recently been introduced to some semblance of stability, much less been explored.

Last but not least, China. Likely another 'Other country.' Worth special mention only because they don't have our ideological desire to destroy ourselves, and thus will drill for oil anywhere and everywhere so long as there's a market for that oil. Very unwise to bet against a nation with that sort of resolve.

But really, the wasted potential from state-owned oil giants and undiscovered oil I think are the big ones. One day, Brazil seemed destined to forever be a bit player in the oil market. Now they're a future Saudi Arabia, because they had the audacity to actually hunt for the stuff, which we don't. That chart really then has little to do with reality, it's just what some people hope for as reality.


RE: Clueless
By Granseth on 8/31/2012 3:48:17 AM , Rating: 2
And still there is a finite source of oil. And the alternative sources (like deep sea, oil sand and polar sources) is way more expensive to extract than conventional sources.

I agree that those charts most of the time is wrong, but one day they will be right.

But there is one solution that no one is willing to discuss, and that is the problem is hugely related to the number of people on this planet. If we could stop the growth and then step back to about 2/3 of the current population in the world, it would be a much nicer place to live in.


RE: Clueless
By danobrega on 8/31/2012 9:24:01 AM , Rating: 2
Clearly you do not understand the problem of exponential growth.

Fine, you'll find out reserves in the USA that are equivalent to all the oil produced in all history. That will give you more... 10 years.

Further more the graph contains all the oil discovered and undiscovered, it is not probable that significant reserves will be found in the future. Event if there are, you can't sustain growth.

This is not debatable, it's simple math.

If you have the time, please look into it further.


RE: Clueless
By Ringold on 8/31/2012 5:46:39 PM , Rating: 2
I understand the problem of exponential growth, it's simply not relevant.

Oil production needs only to increase modestly to keep everything humming along nicely. Yes, China, India, Africa and the Middle East are all booming in terms of oil consumption from low bases, but the current largest consumers, North America and Europe, are on the path to fair regular annual declines. The US has even become a net exporter of refined oil products.

Further, whale oil is largely assumed these days to of been phased out due to a lack of whales. Not entirely true; they were running out, but the hunting stopped (and the lobbying resisting banning the hunting) when whaling ships could come back to port and had no buyers for their relatively expensive oil; people had a new, better, cheaper source. Oil from the ground. With whales rotting in huge piles near docks, whalers found something else to do with their lives.

Same as the "stone age didn't end because we ran out of stones" story.

In that same vein, battery technology isn't there yet but it gets closer every day, and except for a few odd subsidized examples, virtually no one uses oil to generate electricity. The more batteries advance, the more EV's and hybrids there will be, and the more rapidly Western consumption will drop.

Within 50 years, with things just going the way they are, I'd suspect most oil consumption will be for chemicals and industrial products; fertilizer, plastics, etc. If oil prices are quite a bit higher in real terms then for a lot of those industrial uses alternatives are already exist, just aren't competitive at current prices.

Speaking of prices, any existing car or truck can be converted to natural gas, which is cheap and abundant. There's a bridge solution if China bids up oil prices.

I think you're falling in to another philosophical trap laid by Malthus; forgetting technology advances, often rapidly, often unexpectedly. Liberals even accept this whole heartedly that technology has seemed to be advancing at an increasingly rapid pace the last 100 years, they just refuse to extend that to areas they have ideological blind-spots in, like energy. People like you have been crying about looming apocalypses and shortages since ancient Greece, and haven't been right yet.


RE: Clueless
By danjw1 on 8/31/2012 12:04:08 AM , Rating: 2
They don't have to live up to the CAFE standards, they just have to pay to not do it. What is so bad about that? Our dependence on foreign oil, is doing harm everyday to our economy.

It also does harm to our national security. I don't think anyone believes that George W. Bush dragged us into Iraq for any reason other then he wanted the oil. Romney has been very strait forward about his wish to go to war with Iran, which would just be another war for oil. As a veteran, I would rather pay a more for a car then send our soldiers and marines to another country to fight and die to keep feeding gas guzzlers.

People wonder why those in other countries don't like us. It is because, so many American's put what they want above the common good.


RE: Clueless
By tamalero on 8/31/2012 5:03:55 AM , Rating: 2
And monopoly companies who have no need to improve.. will somehow drive this improvement?

yeah.. riight!.


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