Posts tagged ‘Cash For Clunkers’

January 11, 2010

Chinese Cars & Health Care For America?

by lewwaters

Americans have long held a love affair, a genuine affection towards the car. Since its invention, Americans have customized, souped up and embraced the car as an ultimate sign of our free spirit and liberty, moving about as we desire when we desire in a minimum of time.

American cars were once big, luxurious and fast. Maybe not Sports Car fast like a Ferrari or Lamborghini, but built to hold steady speeds for long periods of time.

Of course, they required excessive gas consumption and were known for polluting the air. To combat that we began downsizing the cars, decreasing engine size and with the advent of automotive computers, better managing fuel systems.

Through the 1970’s, American Auto Manufacturers were slow to pick up he trend towards smaller more efficient cars and played catch-up in the 1980’s. Media began touting Imported vehicles as much better, smaller, more efficient and reliable. Japanese manufacturers flooded America with their products, often exempted from some of the more restrictive emissions requirements placed on domestic built cars.

American manufacturers lost part of the domestic market as buyers embraced the imports, even as their prices rose and soon, they too began showing some of the failures and recalls that plagued the domestic manufacturers.

Korea began importing their cars with the Hyundai and Kia and Americans were impressed as the Big Three continued to flounder.

At the same time, quietly, China began producing cars cheaply as they did in many other aspects of manufacturing. Our markets have been flooded with Chinese manufactured goods, many turning out to be unsafe or toxic to the very children they were designed and built for.

It should come as no surprise that China, with their cheap labor and the American Auto Manufacturers continuing troubles, has surpassed the U.S. to take over as the World’s Largest Auto Manufacturer, according the Bloomberg.

As American Auto Manufacturers were begging for government bail-outs, ending in the catastrophic ‘Cash for Clunkers,’ which helped sluggish sales of Asian Vehicles more than American, Chinas sales of passenger cars, trucks and buses rose 92 percent in December 2009. For the whole of 2009, passenger-car sales rose 53 percent for the Chinese.

In spite of these impressive sales figures, we have yet to see a mass influx of Chinese built automobiles. But, with the current administrations folly of indebting America Trillions of Dollars to the Chinese government, will we soon see Chinese Dealerships popping up across America as we saw happen in the 1970’s with the Japanese?

Already our Automotive Magazines are displaying some very nice looking vehicles built in China, such as this April 2009 Road & Track article.

If China sees the American market as one they will enter eventually, could they be denied with them holding the largest portion of America’s foreign debt?

In the meantime, what with the government takeover of two of the Big Three, American manufacturers continue to flounder and produce cars Americans don’t want.

No doubt should the Chinese flood America with their vehicles, jobs will increase as dealerships open, sales staff are hired and mechanics trained to work on and service the vehicles.

Unfortunately, our Medical Profession will probably be inundated with new patients due to buying the cars and inevitably, being involved in accidents.

If the planned takeover of our Health Care System goes as well as the takeover of the Auto Manufacturers has so far, maybe we can count on China to import Doctors and Hospitals too.

August 4, 2009

Still Think ‘Cash For Clunkers’ Is Good?

by lewwaters

Think again. It is just another redistribution of wealth program.

From Bloomberg, “Four of Top ‘Clunkers’ Model Purchases Are Foreign.”

Questioned about the lack of helping struggling American Auto manufaturers, we read, “The “Buy American” provision was dropped from the final legislation because of opposition from foreign automakers and free-trade advocates who said it would conflict with U.S. obligations to the World Trade Organization.”

Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid (D. Nv) says of the additional $2 Billion of our tas dollars going to bolster import cars sales, “We’ll pass cash for clunkers before we leave here,” Friday.

Sure to bring glee to ‘Greeners’ who look forward to destroying American Gas Guzzling Auto Manufacturers is some of the American vehicles on the Eligible New Cars list.

2009 Cadillac SRX, 2009 Chevrolet Express Cargo, 2009 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD, 2009 Chevrolet Suburban, 2009 Chrysler Town and Country, 2009 Dodge Ram Pickup 2500, 2009 Dodge Sprinter Cargo, 2009 Ford Econoline Cargo, 2009 Ford F-250 Super Duty, 2009 GMC Sierra 3500HD, 2009 GMC Yukon XL, and sure to please the Sierra Club, 2009 HUMMER H3T.

Lots of Gas Guzzlers eligible for any considering some good old ‘Detroit Iron.’

Don’t worry about emissions, save the UAW!

August 1, 2009

Our Cash, Your Clunker, What About Jobs?

by lewwaters

chrysler_300_1961_rustyThe Cash Allowance Rebate System, or “CARS,” better known as “Cash for Clunkers” has proven itself to be a big success. So successful that it ran through the $1 Billion allocated for it in the first 4 days, requiring its own ‘bailout’ of another $2 Billion to keep the program going.

All across the nation we hear of buyers getting a ‘cash for clunkers’ deal for their old gas guzzler, trading it in for a new fuel efficient car and leaving it at the dealer for the mandatory destruction of the engine, rendering the trade-in largely worthless, other than for scrap metal.

Selling us on the program, we are told, “The idea is to spur vehicle sales while the industry is struggling with the effects of the economic downturn. U.S. auto sales are selling at a pace of about 10 million units per year, down sharply from a few years ago when they sold at the historic level of 15 million vehicles annually.”

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said, “[he] expects the program to spur sales of 250,000 new cars in the United States over the next few months,” adding This will be a huge boost to car manufacturers across the country.”

We then read of a buyer at McEleney Autocenter in Clinton, Iowa, who traded in an old Ford truck and “drove away with a brand new Hyundai Accent.”

In New York, we hear that “Business was humming at Crestmont Toyota/Volkswagen.”

From around Chicago we read of a buyer who brought in their 1990 Ford Econoline for a deal from Gregory Hyundai in Highland Park.

The general manager of Willowbrook Kia/Ford tells us, “There’s a lot of interest, and there’s a lot of junk out on the road.”

Again we are told of a buyer from Barrington, Illinois who traded in his 1999 Oldsmobile Bravada in and drove out in a brand new 2009 Hyundai Santa Fe.

Gene Bradshaw, president of Beaverton, Oregon based Carr Auto Group says, “his Beaverton Subaru and Chevrolet dealerships were pulling in the most Cash for Clunker shoppers,” over other dealerships in the group selling American cars in Vancouver, Washington.

Bradshaw then claims, “This is the first stimulus program that has actually trickled down and helped stir the economy. You have a car dealer and a salesman making a profit; you have the trucking company that hauls (the cars) making a profit and scrap metal companies making money.”

How reassuring that must be to the employees of 789 Chrysler Dealers who lost jobs when the White House Car Czar directed they lose their franchises, with upwards of 2,000 General Motors dealers facing the same fate.

Vancouver, Washington’s Allen Webb, who was one of those who’s Auto Group lost Dodge franchise added, “The Nissan store and the Mazda store are doing the best.”

With two major American manufacturers coming out of bankruptcy, why are our tax dollars, above and beyond millions of tax dollars pumped to those 2 manufacturers, bolstering sales for imports?

Didn’t Obama’s Transportation Secretary LaHood tell us, “This will be a huge boost to car manufacturers across the country?”

The owner of Highland Park Ford Lincoln Mercury informs us that with incentives tilted toward some import lines, “I think the industry would be better served with a flat rebate for anybody that buys a new car, or even better, anybody that buys an American car.”

Can someone tell me why we are in such a deep recession, yet bailing out imported car manufacturers?

And what about “Jobs?” Just what jobs stand to be created in any long-term capacity by a temporary program as this? Surely the country, the taxpayers, cannot afford to keep giving away up to $4500 trade-in or a $100.00 car with little scrap value, can it?

Will it even help the UAW led manufacturers who have a glut of unsold cars to sell off first? Surely they don’t intend to manufacture more and more cars with a glut of unsold cars, do they?

Will this supply any help to employees of shuttered dealerships that the Car Czar and manufacturers said must be put out of business?

With this program scheduled to cease come November 2009, what then? What will keep buyers coming in when the countries unemployment will most likely have grown beyond the current 9.5%, as predicted by the messiah himself, Barack Hussein Obama?

What happens when the ‘finger is pulled out of this crumbling dike?’ What then when people who used our tax dollars to finance a new car they couldn’t afford last month realize they may not be able to keep up with payments?

Will we have yet another government savior program to give away even more of our tax dollars so they might be able to keep their shiny new cars we are buying for them?

What about the poor who must rely on older vehicles that do not qualify for a “cash for clunker” deal and need repair parts? Usually they travel to the nearest junkyard for their parts. But, with engines destroyed, rendered useless and the cars crushed and shredded, what do they do?

Hope the bus line stops close to the minimum wage job they hope and pray they will have?

With the initial outlay of funds drying up so quickly, Rep. Jerry Lewis (R. Ca.) asked, “If this is how the government is going to handle billion-dollar programs affecting all Americans, I ask, whatever will we do if this administration takes control of our health care?”

Dan Mitchell of the Cato Institute stated, “This is not good for economic growth. You’re simply getting people to use existing income to spend on cars. Getting people to spend more of their money on cars mean they will have less money to spend on other things.”

Mitchell added, “Economic growth is not getting people to spend more money on products, it’s getting them to have more income.”

Countering critics, Bruce Belzowski of University of Michigan says, “It’s hard to say they’re incompetent when the program is creating jobs, stimulating the overall economy and reducing emissions. Where’s the loss here?”

The “loss here” is in the bogus claim of “creating jobs!” Where are these jobs? At best, a few jobs in a troubled industry are saved for a while, but how many of those in the countries the imports selling so well are built?

Reinforcing that is more words from Bruce Belzowski when he adds, I don’t think it was meant to save the auto industry.”

No? Then why in the hell are we doing it?

UPDATE: The House passed the request for an additional $2 Billion to bolster this program and the Senate is pondering it. Reuters ran an article on Aug 3, 2009 U.S. auto sales bolstered by rush to dump ‘clunkers’ that tells us, “Ford Motor Co’s sales rose 2 percent.”

Further down it tells us, “U.S. auto sales overall,,,, fell 12 percent from a year earlier.”

Still further down we read, “Chrysler posted a 9 percent sales decline for July. GM sales were down 19 percent.”
“Sales for Toyota Motor Co were down 11 percent; Honda Motor Co was off 16 percent and Nissan Motor Co sales fell 25 percent.”
“Hyundai Motor Co posted a nearly 12 percent sales gain for July.”

It would appear, as per the supplied numbers, our “Cash For Clunkers” would be more aptly labeled the “South Korean Bailout Act.”

Curiously enough, below the article is a link to a video report, More GM Layoffs Likely, Company Says

Again, why are our tax dollars being given away like this?