Hip Waders and a Pitchfork…Priceless

Colorado voted for Obama.  “The People’s Republic of Boulder” had a lot to do with it.  If you go to that city, most cars still have Kerry/Edwards bumper stickers along with the prerequisite Obama ’08 stickers.  It has been a little uncomfortable having a private conversation about politics in restaurants or bars in Boulder because, inevitably, a member of the wait staff will overhear you and chime in about how Obama is going to “Change this country for the better”…really?

Yesterday, my husband and I went into the mountains for a day off from our otherwise busy lives.  For the most part we were still in Boulder County.  At one of our favorite little bars I noticed a lot of conversations about the current economy, health care, C.A.R.S. and Green Energy.  Much to my surprise I was hearing dissatisfaction with the current administration’s policies and the direction our country is taking.  Well, not our country necessarily – but Obama, his Czars, the bank bailouts, taxes, Pelosi, Reid and the rest of our employees in Congress.  I know I had a few beers, but I was by no means delusional.

Many of the comments began with “…I know I voted for him, but now I wonder if I made the right choice…” or “…I really believed he would make positive changes to our government, but…”

The two biggest complaints seemed to be about the C.A.R.S. program and the Health Care Reform bill.  People are getting downright frustrated with our Senators and Members of Congress blowing off our requests to read the bill before you pass it. Some felt that our employees in Congress would do the right thing and actually read it during their summer break.  Many laughed at that saying the Members of Congress weren’t going to waste good opportunities to campaign for their upcoming 2010 re-election bids to sit down and read over 1,000 pages of what is perhaps the most important (and frightening) piece of legislation to cross their desks in 20 years.

I tend to agree with the latter.  So, today I am going to go to Bass Pro Shop and buy a new pair of hip waders, and a pitchfork, so that I will be able to traverse the load of manure that is sure to follow my Senator and Representative as they skip happily along the Rocky Mountains campaigning for 2010.  Thank Goddess we have a 4-wheel drive pick-up.

Hey, honey, wake up!  We’re going 4-wheelin’ amongst the cow pies…

Stupid is as Government does…

C.A.R.S. – WOW, our government really, really loves us!  Up to $4,500 for your old Detroit Model P.O.S.!  What a deal!

Not so much…there’s a catch or two…

  1. Many cars don’t qualify for the full $4,500 because the differential between the “clunker’s” gas mileage and a newer “green” car is not as great as many assumed.
  2. The cars being traded in are supposed to be crushed within 48 hours.  I know a bit about scrap…worked for a scrap yard/used parts dealer, my husband is a tow truck driver and hauls scrap about once monthly to a scrap yard…  This program will glut the market and lower the price of scrap tremendously.  I can assure you that many dealers will find a way to delay the destruction of  “clunkers” and hold them until the price of scrap goes up again.  It can be done legally.  Every law has a way to get around it.
  3. In most states you must wait 72 hours to apply for a new title on a vehicle.  Even if that automobile was voluntarily surrendered by the titled owner.  Then, you have to drain the fluids into approved containers and remove many parts because they cannot be melted down with the metal (tires, certain hoses, etc.).  The cost to dispose of the liquids that have been removed from a scrap vehicle is very high.  There are environmental laws regarding storage, transportation and disposal of oil, transmission fluid, fuel, anti-freeze, power steering fluid, brake fluid, yada, yada, yada…
  4. Speaking of tires…what do we do with them?  Some states recycle them to use in road construction and playground mulch.  They can also be used to create coral reefs.  All good ideas formed with the best intentions.  Note-only some states have these programs.  My state does not.  The yard my husband works for has tried to contact many out-of-state companies to see if they can sell them the used tires.  Either they can’t take them because they have too many from their own state, or the cost to transport the damaged tires is too expensive to make it worthwhile.  In an already cash-strapped economy, it will be difficult for many states to start recycling programs of their own.  Uh oh…I smell another government brain-fart (oops, I mean brain-storm) looming on the horizon.
  5. Most of the vehicles that fall within the guidelines for a “green” vehicle are foreign made.  This helps us how?  Many will argue that Toyota has factories in America.  Okay…but, where does the revenue go?  TO JAPAN!  Kia…Korea.  Hyundai, Honda, etc. are not American made vehicles.  Since those companies fall outside of U.S. jurisdiction in many ways, we will see little return on our investment.  Yes, the dealerships are located here.  However, they weren’t hurting in the first place, so how does this “create or save jobs”?
  6. Used parts dealers will be forced to reduce staff.  Since the parts will be rendered useless, they will have at least 40% less inventory.  I know I can’t afford to trade in my 1991 Buick Century because I can’t afford a car payment of any kind.  (Aside from the fact that I have anti-credit…many a computer has blown up or grown horns and a tail when I have tried to apply for credit)  So, where do I go for replacement parts for my car?  I can go to an auto parts store.  And when I look at the bottom of the box my new starter came in, what do I see?  MADE IN CHINA”
  7. Last (but certainly not least)…THIS WAS OUR FREAKIN’ MONEY IN THE FIRST PLACE!!!!! The money you are getting in this “Deal of the Century” is yours.  It’s like busting into your kid’s piggy bank, removing $10 then handing it to your kid with a big smile on your face while you tell him/her “Here’s $10.  Why don’t you get yourself those new Pokimon cards you wanted?”  Children are trusting, so your kid will be so thrilled to receive the “gift” you just gave to him/her that they won’t realize it was theirs in the first place.

America, are we really that stupid? Oh, wait, Bill Maher said we were…so we must be.  😉