Saturday, November 12, 2011

The Great American Auto Boondoggle


The Great American Auto Boondoggle

The American Motorists is making a serious mistake… yet again. 

Back in the seventies, when the so-called fuel shortage occurred, Americans began trading the big cars in for those little gas sipping rattletraps from overseas and later from the American automakers.  As it turned out they were fairly good on gas mileage… if you didn’t mind giving up safety, and comfort, which the standard sized American car afforded.

In time, the gas shortage was seen for what it really was… a hoax… and gas stations, again, had plenty of gasoline.  But the American motorists had a pile of junk on his hands.  That is… those who survived car crashes in those tiny little things.

Already, I’m seeing ads in papers for SUV’s, and Standard, as well as the Mid-sized, American cars on sale, with prices drastically cut, some thousands of dollars off the price they’d normally bring on the market.  Dealers are frightened they will be stuck with the large cars, and trucks, and they’re practically giving them away to cut what they see as losses coming down the road aways.

Now, having said all this… let me say, if you own an SUV, or a standard size automobile, or Pick-up… keep it.  At least you’ll be safe in a car crash.  Families with small children should keep their SUV’s for the safety of their families, too.

I have a Pick-up and my wife has a standard sized four-door sedan.  We plan to keep them.  My daughter has one of the largest, if not the largest SUV’s on the market today.  She also has two small children, one an infant.  That vehicle affords a margin of safety for her, and for her children, that those little beer cans, on wheels, will never provide.  So it costs more to fuel up.  How can you put a price on the safety of your family, how?

Those little cars, as we have learned, were death traps in a collision with a standard sized vehicle or truck (including SUVs).  Reducing the speed limit didn’t do much other than make motorist angry, add to the road rage, and make lots of money, from speeding tickets, for the states and municipalities.

Now, remember what we learned from the 70’s and 80’s when the market was flooded with those little toy cars: the owners were so angry, that some of us did not downsize as they did, they tried to put a guilt trip on all the owners of standard sized cars, and trucks, claiming that when your standard size vehicle hit theirs, in a collision, people tended to get killed in the little car.  Well, that was true, but the people in the standard sized vehicle survived! 

The point I’m trying to make is that the decision to buy one of those tiny death traps has a price, not shown on the sticker.  That is the price of your life and the lives of your families. 

The hybrids coming out onto the market today will be featured in the Smithsonian before too many decades are past.  The technology is not new; it’s just newly applied. 

We need more refineries in this country, built away from the immediate coasts.  We need them badly.  We have oil.  We just have no way to refine enough to meet today’s demands.  As soon as we get new refineries built, and the newly refined petroleum products begin to hit the market… watch OPEC”S prices drop like a stone… and their production increase.

Finally, we do need to begin serious research into an alternative for oil when it does run out. That is still many, many, decades down the road, but we need the research started now.

Until that day arrives we have no real choice but to use what we have.  What we have is oil.  Be safe, drive your big truck, or car.  Drive less, if necessary, but think of your safety and the safety of your family.

J. D. Longstreet 

1 comment:

Frank said...

No big trucks or SUV's her, I love big block V8's in light weight mid size cars (Muscle Cars) of the 60's. No govenor they can go as fast as you can afford to make them go..... and do it as often as you feel like opening up your check book to pay a small fine (if they can catch you)