Monday, March 1, 2010

not sold yet


i get asked all the time, where do i stand on the question of either electric cars or hybrids. i would have to say, i am still not for either, even if the demand for both still grows. like in any thing else, buying or having the first few generations of any new technology, is still a crap shoot. if you can afford the smugness one deserves from ownership of said cars, more power to you, but until the price of these cars and practicality withstanding, increases 100 fold, will you get my attention. for the most part, cars in general, are built for the general public, who most have no care or qualms about cars in general. so, just driving 30-40 miles is not an issue for them, and to plug it in and go, hey, all the better. but of course, it also stands to reason, the needs of these said people, generally don't require or even can afford, $30-40,000 high tech cars. a sub, $15,000 car, with a limited range and speed, as well as decent space, would be a huge step above bus ridership and walking. face it, most of these people are not shopping at sam's club anyway, a car is just means of transport, and the freedom of owning their own transport, vs public transportation.

the electric car, is a basic tool, nothing more than a oversized, riding kids toy. look underneath one and all you'll see is a big electric motor, and battery packs; so why all the hoopla over pricing? pure supply and demand for smugness at its peak. make a $15k electric car, 2 or more people can ride in, with heat or a/c blasting and a decent range, the market of smugness will drop like the falling prices of 52" lcd tvs. now hybrids are several generations of bastardness. these cars are going to bewhat in future generations will call "lemons". until true electric cars can prove their worth, the having a gas or diesel motor on stand by, because your stupid ass forgot to charge the car up last night, is its only saving grace. tests have proven hybrids suck at highway driving speeds, if the mileage ratings are what you are after. heaven forbid you breakdown in "deliverance county" usa with your new fangled hybrid from hell; you think "bubba" looks scary now, wait til he pops the hood of your hi-dollar appliance...sure got a pretty mouth there boy....

the companies can keep on saying that electric motors are better than gas for so many reasons, but that reliablity thing still stays in the back of my mind; i have put hundreds of thousands of miles on various cars and trucks in my life; never have i broke down, on some dark country road, and was more scared of the natives, than i was of my car. you can have my gas powered car when you can pull my dead fingers from around my sterring wheel, until then, screw the greenies and nuke the whales.

Monday, October 5, 2009

TOO LITTLE TOO LATE


the death warrant is signed and sealed; the flowers have all wilted and blown away and no more tears have been shed. what was apparant to the rest of the world is now our fate, we have lost being relevant in the world's eyes.

last week, the first of Octoberish, we were dealt a few shots across our bow, shots that also hit and found their mark. First, Toyota, the global super power on its own, announced, even in it's own largest recall here in the states, over deadly floor mats of all things, that most of it's own blood letting is due to it's north american market sales slump. Then the wonder savior of Saturn, Roger Penske, bailed in a last moment deal to take over the failed GM venue. Even Nissan, whose car company would have provided Saturn most of its models when GM quit supplying them, smelled the blood in the water and got out before they were mired in a deeper loss.

then to finally put the nail in the coffin, Chicago, who looked like a lock to win the 2016 Olympic games, lost out even with our own president trying to win the vote for his own political stomping grounds.

The rest of the world has been growing by leaps and bounds, embracing the global markets and becoming the new eden; we have fell behind, akin to our own parent country, England at the turn of the century. Too big, too mighty, and too damn proud, we allowed our own best interests to blind us to our own fall and fall we have. We were the world's leading powerhouse; what we did, affected the rest of the free world. we sold our souls to foreign interests, in order to make a buck or two; our own brain drain took place and we never knew what happened; We are a consumer nation, a service group, taking care of our own needs off the backs of others; we got what we deserved. When WWII took place, we heeded the call, created the machines and manpower to stem the losses and win the war and make the world a safer place. Now with no real face of an enemy, no real battle to win and no products or ideas to call our own, we have lost relevancy in a ever changing world. it was ours to lose, and loss it we did.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

so over it all

here in the wonderful state of unemployement, michigan, u.s.a., a depression all its own, i have found in many chat sites and regular media outlets, a larger than normal japanese car bashing all over again;
this time it is because, with this "cash for clunkers" deals going on, lest than 25% of the domestic car makers fine automobiles qualify for sale in the program. so, go figure, a large amout of the cars being purchased in this deal, are by and large, from the far east. but of course, the japanese are getting the bulk of the bad media or backlash, as all it takes is for the toyota's to be the first choice in the mileage battle, for it to be all the japanese fault, once again.
what i find equally humorous, of course, is the lacking of the european car companies being blamed. now, i am not sure, but i think the bmw's mini and the smart car, both should qualify for the program at hand, but since both of which are pretty much "niche cars", i am afraid they don't even show up on the radar of the pundniks bitching right now.
2 points that come to bear; first, since the japanese and korean cars as of late, are the bread basket cars; the ones who the cash for clunkers programs are trying to benefit the most; getting the family out of that ford explorer and into a nice affordable car, which almost doubles the fuel mileage as well. as of even this morning, in the local detroit media, the domestic car companies are running out of their product, the ones that qualify for the program, while the far eastern imports, whose almost entire lineup, meets these goals, are having record sales and plenty of product to take in each and every potential buyer. so i must ask, why is it the fault of the eastern car companies, to once again, have the product and line up to service the buying public? it is simply not the case.
the second and last point i'd like to make. unlike the u.a.w.'s smear tactics, world war 2 has been over for over 60 years now. hardly any sizeable amount of people who actually fought in that war, are still around and do not make up that large of a buying group to make a real difference; by the way, haven't many of you watched tv of late? there are program after program, finally showing guys who fought on both sides of the battles, meeting and paying tribute to each others actions of the course of those battles; war is fought by governments; the soliders are merely pawns of the overall actions.
in almost any anti-import car banter, it usually incurrs the japanese; rarely the germans; funny thing that is; the germans where more responsible for war time deaths than the japanese ever were; it just seems all too convienent to blame the country who seems to be doing a better job at the product you are boycotting. get real people, get a life; the day will come when the final wwII vet will pass away and you'll have to pick another battle to dredge up and make a marytr for your so-called cause.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

shoot for the moon

now that we have entered the great demise of all things built in america, have we really accepted the fact or notion that we should just be a service nation or an nation of entertainers? great for the hollywood types and sports stars, but sucks to be the rest of us.
upon the cusp of world war two, it was said america was a sleeping giant; turns out they were right; once we commited our industrial might into tools of war, there was no stopping the american spirit. what of that same spirit now? if we have to tool up for a huge war effort, what would we do? mobile all the walmart greeters to stop any enemy at the door? would the starbucks deny them their latte before they make their big push on the capital? could we use telemarketers to annoy them to death and send their families and children to disney world to see a big, white world and corrupt their values? sorry, i am afraid that won't work. becoming a nation of users has put us in a bad way, a way unlike great britain, a major nation of consumers with no real industry other than elton john and a few others like him.
we really need to expand our horizions, we need a goal again; onward to the stars, i say; when we mobilized behind a great national cause, the trickle down technology, as well as the manufacturing base, made america a great proud nation. we need to be self reliant again; sending aall of our technology and brains abroad as well as the manufacturing base, soon will bite us in the worse way, and with the chinese not only owning all our debt and making most of our products, soon may be here before we know it.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

westward winds

seems a cusp of a dawning of a new automotive world is upon us. yes, in less than a year, with all the economic choas around us, a new pecking order and outlook as a whole is nigh.
general motors, who did battle with exxon and walmart as the world's largest companies, now as the "new" GM, has a net value less than the "GAP" clothes stores. chrysler, was simply just "given" away, to the italians, as if any one else, short of the chinese, wanted them. Ford, poor hapless Ford, struggles along, pretending all is well, but in truth, the death pool is patiently awaiting its demise.
granted, even the mighty germans and japanese, in hindsight, never expected this much termoil, some took risks, some played it safe, but all fell into the same sinkhole as did our own companies. suppliers, already hanging by a thread, failed and their suppliers did like wise. no one, was safe from the virus. all said in done, 1 in 3 jobs were affected in this country, due to the automotive fallout following the economy's demise.
now, all of us, are all ready aware of these plights, but we are focusing on the new; mergers on mega scales, downsizing on the mega scale as well; how, after, most of the OEM's come back from summer change overs, will be ready and able to supply what is left of the industry is a bigger guess. many of the 2nd and third tier suppliers are already aftermarket suppliers and have hedged theirselves against further mayhem; but with what is already called government motors, a socialist experiment ala communism, is at hand. Henry Ford would be proud, any color as long as it's black..with so few choices available, and even fewer credit worthy buyers, a interesting time is ahead. and lets look at the start ups; Tesla, got government money to push ahead their electric cars; the greening of america, is here, kicking and screaming we may, shoddy first production cars, with shaky mechanicals, makes a buyer wary of any of these ideals. sure many here in america, sheep that we are, would love to drive a "green" car. maybe the time is right for much of this, but after going to the S.A.S.E. show here in Detroit, a show that is for all the engineers of the automotive industry, looking at the suggestions and samples provided by even the largest of OEM's , i am scared to say, the offerings are lean and offer little to make me feel we have mastered the technology required to market such creations, let alone, stand behind them for any lenght of time; just like when the first computers came out; they were better left to the egg heads that created them; but as technology gained fruitation, the concept became viable and worth selling to the general public.
it is my greatest fear, that not only will all this push to become "green" and struggle thru these economic times as well, the buying public is the one with the greatest risks of all. let the soup come to boil, and finish simmering, when it is ready, let the people eat, not sooner

Saturday, February 28, 2009

stimulus for me

hey mr. president! over here, over here! you know, all that money that you are throwing around? how about some my way? i promise not to be quite as bad as the banks and blow some of it on high flying hi-jinxs, but i'll do my best. maybe i'll do my part and pay some of my bills, try to stay solvent, hmm, maybe not, i'll get more money that way. you want to have 36% ownership in me? why not? hell, when i work, you already get close to 25%, so what's a few extra points between business partners. do i have a business plan? no....should i? doesn't seem any of corporate america does either, so does it really matter? do i plan on paying it back? come on mr. president, this is the new america, the one you wanted to change so badly; hell, with all the new socialist programs in place, flush with cash from the endless supply your mint keeps printing, why should i worry? if it all goes as badly as it is planned, hell, i'll be out of money sooner than when you give it to me.
thinking back, george w's measly $600 per taxpayer was chump change; you give the meaning of "entitlement" a new twist; just ask, you'll recieve, and in a really big way.i was always under the impression that the democrats just give away money, as long as it's not theirs, and boy, you didn't fail to surprise anyone...less than 100 days in office and already given away the cow, the milk and the farm. damn, is there anything left yet? see, why should i worry about paying you back, hell, i stand a better chance of making it, compared to some of the other so-called shaky business deals you've already made. talk about buying votes, you hit that one slam dunk.
oh, and good call, sending hil to china, begging them to buy more of our debt...at this rate, our great grandchildren will be paying off the interest, let alone the principal. you know, i kinda like that idea, we borrow from china, and plow it into iraq, and pay off north korea to play nice. makes sense, buying your enemies, with your own blood, sold to yet more of your enemies.
some how, mr. president, i think on your way out, forget we had this conversation and hey, thanks for the billion; the checks in the mail....

Friday, February 27, 2009

wishful thinking?

i was reading another blog site, dedicated to cars as well, and a story about toyota in europe was having storage space issues with so many unsold cars and trucks, they had to pretty much just lease space on a container ship.
what burned me, was the 'tude of some of the posters to that site, spilling off comments like too much over production, building for the sake of building, bad management, etc.
what most of these armchair "ceo's" fail to realize, as does most of the people macro-managementing this country and the world as a whole, that people who have money and those with out, are just not spending money. we want jobs, the chance to create wealth, our own futures, not unemployment lines and foreclosed homes and shattered lives. we, the people in this country need the bail outs, not the idiots who mismanaged the whole damn thing in the first place. when history is written about this decade, the morgage industry crisis that brought about our depression, will finally be accepted for what it was; not the wants of the poor; but the gross negligence of those on top; corporate greed is what killed the golden goose.
so when the smug little posters who feel it's the little guy's fault, i hope they'll finally figure it out when their bmw's, mercedes and lexus won't make them any new friends at the unemployement lines.