Print 93 comment(s) - last by senecarr.. on Mar 14 at 8:11 PM

Tesla said Governor Christie’s administration has "gone back on its word"

Tesla Motors has been trying to push its direct sales model into various U.S. states, and while it saw a bit of success with New Jersey, a new state rule could destroy Tesla's plans. 

According to Tesla, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s administration recently proposed a new rule that requires that a person have a franchise agreement with an auto manufacturer in order to be granted a license to sell. 

This is a problem for Tesla, considering it already operates two stores in New Jersey and had plans to open more. It's possible that Tesla could have to stop selling its all-electric Model S and any future vehicles in these stores and instead use them as showrooms where customers can look, but not buy. 

"Unfortunately, Monday we received news that Governor Christie’s administration has gone back on its word to delay a proposed anti-Tesla regulation so that the matter could be handled through a fair process in the Legislature," said Tesla in a statement. "The Administration has decided to go outside the legislative process by expediting a rule proposal that would completely change the law in New Jersey. This new rule, if adopted, would curtail Tesla’s sales operations and jeopardize our existing retail licenses in the state.

"Having previously issued two dealer licenses to Tesla, this regulation would be a complete reversal to the long standing position of NJMVC on Tesla’s stores. Indeed, the Administration and the NJMVC are thwarting the Legislature and going beyond their authority to implement the state’s laws at the behest of a special interest group looking to protect its monopoly at the expense of New Jersey consumers. This is an affront to the very concept of a free market."

Tesla CEO Elon Musk and President Barack Obama

Tesla has been in a battle with many states regarding its direct sales model. The issue is that auto dealerships feel Tesla's new sales model threatens their network, which many other automakers rely on. If other automakers were to follow Tesla's example, it would put the dealerships in a bad spot. The National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) said that dealerships are necessary to ensure competitive prices for customers, and that it will continue to defend franchise and consumer laws in the states.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk, on the other hand, believes that auto dealerships don't do a very good job at selling specialty cars like Tesla's high-end electric vehicles (Roadster, Model S). Hence, he's looking to run his own Tesla stores around the U.S. where he believes his cars will get a fair shot at being sold. 
However, the problem for Tesla is that auto dealerships have much deeper pockets -- meaning that they have a lot more to spend on lobbying, and lawmakers will surely side with them when money is involved. 
In fact, auto dealers spent $86.8 million on state election races across the U.S. between 2003 and 2012. They also spent $53.7 million on federal campaigns. Tesla, on the other hand, has spent less than $500,000 on both state and federal politics. 
Tesla has gone head-to-head with many other states that are protecting auto dealerships, such as Massachusetts, Ohio and New York. 
Just last month, it was reported that Ohio Sen. Tom Patton (R-Strongsville) backed a new bill called Senate Bill 260, which aims to prevent Tesla and any other automaker from "applying for a license to sell or lease new or used motor vehicles at retail." Tesla opened its own stores in both Cincinnati and Columbus, as Ohio's current laws allow the automaker to do so. However, Senate Bill 260 would certainly put a stop to it, unless existing stores opened before the bill are deemed safe. 
What's interesting is that Patton received at least $42,825 between 2002 and 2013 from state and national auto dealership owners, employees, and political action committees. 

Source: Tesla Motors

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RE: Show me the money!
By TSS on 3/11/2014 8:33:03 PM , Rating: 2
That's some high grade doublespeak you're employing there. If a company is "just a group of people", how the hell would the company not be represented if the company itself wasn't considered a person? It's made up entirely of persons! it's already represented!

Not only that but you cannot even see that you're agueing for taxation WITHOUT representation! (You thickheaded buffoon! usually i hate namecalling but goddamn you're so indoctrinated it's not even funny).

Because the corperations are able to exert such power in the democratic process, the vast majority of the US's population ISN'T represented right now! Because the politicians are bought off by corperate sponsored lobbyists what chance does a single voter have? What representation do all millions of voters combined even have if they cannot even compete with only ~10,000 lobbyists?!

It just blows my mind you can look that post and see nothing wrong with it. What drugs are you on? Stop doing them. If you're not on any, start. This includes legal/prescribed drugs by the way.

RE: Show me the money!
By Reclaimer77 on 3/11/2014 10:07:50 PM , Rating: 2
Dude I'm not the one who invented "Corporate Person-hood". I'm just speaking facts. I know it doesn't jive with the populist opinion, but what are you gonna do?

The problem is that there are some very sound practical and Constitutional reasons for the doctrine of corporate personhood.

You're using a straw man to say I must obviously support out of control lobbying if I support corporate personhood.

Actually "support" is too strong of a word. I'm simply informing you of the pragmatic realities of the situation. I happen to the think the First Amendment and the Constitution is a big deal, if you don't..okay.

Do you really care about seeing both sides of this? Let me quote you something, and honestly think about how it would be without Corporate Personhood.

"When individuals pool their resources and speak under the legal fiction of a corporation, they do not lose their rights. It cannot be any other way; in a world where corporations are not entitled to constitutional protections, the police would be free to storm office buildings and seize computers or documents. The mayor of New York City could exercise eminent domain over Rockefeller Center by fiat and without compensation if he decides he'd like to move his office there. Moreover, the government would be able to censor all corporate speech, including that of so-called media corporations. In short, rights-bearing individuals do not forfeit those rights when they associate in groups."

RE: Show me the money!
By kickoff on 3/12/2014 1:04:34 PM , Rating: 2
I see your point, but I have to agree to disagree.

Not granting corporations person-hood does not mean we have to by default go to some extreme where the corporation has no right to have a place of business. Saying that a corporation (or Union, etc) should not have the right to lobby or otherwise act as a PERSON in the political process does not automatically imply the Mayor of NYC can walk in and take over a building he wants.
If we're not intelligent enough to right laws that should pertain to a business as opposed to a person, then we're not capable of governing ourselves in the first place.

There has to be a reasonable middle ground.

RE: Show me the money!
By senecarr on 3/13/2014 9:44:36 AM , Rating: 2
But none of that follows from denying corporations personhood.
A corporation is a type of legal charter owned by people. Those people are still free to act as individuals even if their corporation isn't.
It is like saying, if my house isn't a legal person, that means the mayor of my town could take over my basement because it is part of my house, and I just own the house, while the house itself owns the basement.

Also, if you think the constitution as intended meant to protect corporations in anyway, you don't know the founders. The Boston Tea Party, for example, was not simply about anger with the government, it was anger at corporatism - the participants hated the East India trading company and its tea monopoly just as much as the government giving it to them.
Initial laws on corporations limited their existence - their charters forcibly expired so they couldn't run forever. Individuals running the corporation could face criminal prosecution for actions of the corporation. Corporations were usually required to work in only one sector / commodity to limit their influence.

RE: Show me the money!
By Reclaimer77 on 3/13/2014 12:31:19 PM , Rating: 2
Corporate Personhood has been upheld by nearly every Supreme Court for over a hundred years.

You're going to have to do more to outweigh that than a poor interpretation of the Boston Tea Party.

I've often heard Progressives make the argument that the Founders were against Corporations so we should be too. But that's clearly not based in any researchable facts.

If you can find me a first world nation with a thriving economy that's banned Corporations, I would like to see how they did it.

RE: Show me the money!
By senecarr on 3/14/2014 8:11:28 PM , Rating: 2
Corporate Personhood has been upheld by nearly every Supreme Court for over a hundred years.

You'll note I said founder's intent. Court decisions are different from founder's intent, some judges view constitutions as living and founder's intent not necessary. Others require strict intent, and others rely on founder's intent in modern context. Usually each of these interpretations ends up amounting whatever the heck the judge feels anyway.

You're going to have to do more to outweigh that than a poor interpretation of the Boston Tea Party. I've often heard Progressives make the argument that the Founders were against Corporations so we should be too. But that's clearly not based in any researchable facts.

I've listed several facts that showed anti-corporate laws - corporations had limited "life" spans, they had laws requiring the to operate in specific areas, can you provide anything more concrete saying those things didn't exist?

If you can find me a first world nation with a thriving economy that's banned Corporations, I would like to see how they did it.

I don't have to find you any such thing because that's a strawman. We're discussing limits on corporate power and corporate personhood, not the efficacy of having laws allowing corporations. I know it is hard to think in grey areas instead of black-white like corporations must be allowed the same rights as people, or corporations cannot exist in any form.
And even if it was what we are arguing, you're now arguing from popularity, which is equally fallacious. No current economy operates on fusion power, but if tomorrow someone developed virtually free nuclear fusion power, would that mean no country should adopt it?

"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer

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