GM says Volt will be landmark fuel savings vehicle

Aug 11, 2009
General Motors President and CEO Fritz Henderson announces the Chevrolet Volt extended-range electric vehicle at a press conference in Warren, Michigan. Troubled auto giant General Motors said Tuesday its new electric sedan, the Chevrolet Volt, will be marketed in 2011 as the first mass produced vehicle capable of achieving three-digit fuel savings.

Troubled auto giant General Motors said Tuesday its new electric sedan, the Chevrolet Volt, will be marketed in 2011 as the first mass produced vehicle capable of achieving three-digit fuel savings.

It said the Volt was expected to achieve city of at least 230 miles per gallon (370 kilometers per 3.8 liters), based on development testing using government fuel economy methodology for labeling for plug-in electric vehicles.

"From the data we've seen, many drivers may be able to be in pure electric mode on a daily basis without having to use any gas," said GM chief executive Fritz Henderson.

The Volt, which is scheduled to start production in late 2010 as a 2011 model, is expected to travel up to 40 miles (64 kilometers) on electricity from a single battery charge, the company said.

It may be able to extend its overall range to more than 300 miles (483 kilometers) with its flex fuel-powered engine-generator, it added.

"So, a vehicle like the Volt that achieves a composite triple-digit fuel economy is a game-changer," Henderson said.

According to US Department of Transportation data, nearly eight of 10 Americans commute fewer than 40 miles a day.

"The key to high-mileage performance is for a Volt driver to plug into the at least once each day," Henderson said.

The Volt is part of a trend in the beleaguered US to move towards smaller, more environmentally friendly cars as customers abandon large and fuel-guzzling sport-utility vehicles.

GM is now majority owned by the US government after it emerged from bankruptcy on July 10.

(c) 2009 AFP

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Doug_Huffman
4.4 / 5 (7) Aug 11, 2009
GM = Government Motors. My VW TDI is long paid off and gets real world mileage that I measure.
zevkirsh
2.7 / 5 (3) Aug 11, 2009
gm....seriously? this is like BP perpetuating the "beyond petroleum" advertising when every dollar they make comes from petroleum sales and is used to lobby against the renewable energy industry.
Lord_jag
1 / 5 (1) Aug 11, 2009
I can't wait until this comes out to see how GM screwed it up.

Strangely enough they didn't go far out of their way to make it look as much like a crappy car as they could... That's supprising!
PaulLove
4 / 5 (6) Aug 11, 2009
I'd be interested in the computational model they used to generate that number. Statistics lie if the underlieing assumptions are not also included. I've noticed this anouncemt in several places and it always specifies that it uses the calculatin for government calculation for plug in vehicals without describing exactly what that is.


For example if it is assumed that the average miles traveled per day to and from work is 41 and the volt can travel 40 of those miles based on the electrical charge in the battery so if the calculation is run that way then every day the gallon of gas is actually used to run the car one mile. So at the end of the work week you've run out of gas. Five days of traveling 41 miles and you've used 1 gallon of gas. You've traveled 205 miles going to work this week and you've used 1 gallon of gas. Did you really get 205 mpg? No you got 5MPG and drew power from the grid for your electric car for most of your travel.
Whalemangler
5 / 5 (5) Aug 11, 2009
Mr Love,

You are assuming that you would use 1 gallon of gas to go 5 miles? They have stated it would get 50 mpg on gas power, no reason to doubt this since the Prius can do it.

Yes, you draw most of your power from the grid to get to work. That is the point. That power comes from an American owned power plant and that money stays in our economy instead of funding terrorism. Besides grid power is about 10c per kwh where I live. Since the batteries only need 8kwh to get you 40 miles, thats the equivilent of 80c per gallon assuming your car can get 40mpg. I have a pretty efficient Civic and I get about 33mpg.

GM will sell a ton of these.
defunctdiety
3.6 / 5 (8) Aug 11, 2009
GM is now majority owned by the US government after it emerged from bankruptcy on July 10.

That this is possible in the United States of America is absolutely terrifying.
Sean_W
5 / 5 (3) Aug 11, 2009
I have been told that even though they are quite expensive, Government Motors is still selling these things at a loss. Is that true? Maybe they would be willing to pay me half the loss not to buy one. We would both come out ahead.
TJ_alberta
1 / 5 (2) Aug 11, 2009
whalemangler: where did you get the 8 kwh figure per 40 miles. I can't make that figure compute if I translate it to HP per hour... so what you are really saying is that the VOLT 4 door sedan is going to drive like a normal car BUT with a
DocM
5 / 5 (2) Aug 12, 2009
Charging has been presumed to occur during the off-hours when rates are smaller.

In the Detroit area this is $0.05/kWh, so it would cost about 40-50 cents to charge the Volt, resulting in a cost per mile of just over 1 cent when running in the EV mode. The 100 mile combined cycle was stated to be about 3 cents per mile.

Now consider that a 'normal' ICE driven car costs about 10 cents per mile.

Do the math.
jimbo92107
3.7 / 5 (3) Aug 12, 2009
Isn't GM planning to sell this Volt for $40 thousand dollars or more? How are they going to sell "thousands" of Volts at such an enormous price? Right now you can buy a cheap Kia Rio for less than $15K, and you'll get about 37mpg highway. The extra $25K will buy a lot of gasoline.

Plus, Nissan is planning to begin selling its electric car in America next year. Around $15K, and it goes 100 miles per charge. Why can't GM beat that?
Ethelred
4.3 / 5 (6) Aug 12, 2009
That this is possible in the United States of America is absolutely terrifying.


You are easily terrified. GM is one of only two US owned makers. To loose it would be very bad for the US and us its people. Loosing a major company like GM if it can be saved it is just plain stupid.

And if saving means using US government dollars it should mean US government ownership. If it can be saved then the US government should begin to sell it to the public. Now if the government retains it after it becomes profitable then it would be time to vote in people that will do the right thing. This is supposed to be temporary.

Ethelred
Whalemangler
5 / 5 (2) Aug 12, 2009
whalemangler: where did you get the 8 kwh figure per 40 miles. I can't make that figure compute if I translate it to HP per hour... so what you are really saying is that the VOLT 4 door sedan is going to drive like a normal car BUT with a


I have been following this car for quite some time. It has a 16kwh battery but only uses half of it extend the life of the batteries.
John_balls
2.5 / 5 (4) Aug 12, 2009
GM is now majority owned by the US government after it emerged from bankruptcy on July 10.


That this is possible in the United States of America is absolutely terrifying.

Yea , I'm running for the hills (roll eyes)
Whalemangler
5 / 5 (1) Aug 12, 2009
Isn't GM planning to sell this Volt for $40 thousand dollars or more? How are they going to sell "thousands" of Volts at such an enormous price? Right now you can buy a cheap Kia Rio for less than $15K, and you'll get about 37mpg highway. The extra $25K will buy a lot of gasoline.



Plus, Nissan is planning to begin selling its electric car in America next year. Around $15K, and it goes 100 miles per charge. Why can't GM beat that?


Not everyone buys cars based on economics, it will cost 32.5k with the $7500 tax credit. People buy cars that cost 33k all the time. Imagine how many they will sell in europe where gas is rediculously expensive.
DGBEACH
5 / 5 (3) Aug 12, 2009
GM will sell a ton of these.
...let's hope they sell more than that...that would only equal about half of one car! :)

Plus, Nissan is planning to begin selling its electric car in America next year. Around $15K, and it goes 100 miles per charge. Why can't GM beat that?

Yeah, I agree with this statement. Having been a Nissan fan for years, I'm glad to see that they have already surpassed GM's EV range. I will be more inclined to buy one once they've achieved the 300 km-range level however.
Milou
4.5 / 5 (2) Aug 12, 2009
I would not get a GM if they gave the car away and had 1,000 mpg. They failed us in the past with their gloating and just because the government took over, the truth become even more non existence. Look at the past 8 yrs. I don't believe Democrats much more. I like the first statement "GM = Government Motors...".
COCO
2.8 / 5 (4) Aug 12, 2009
will become the Lada of the USA - better make sure the rear window heaters have a seperate battery system to ensure ease of pushing the piece of junk off the highway - socialism does NOT build cars - it simply destroys hope. Let GM go the way of the dodo - don't feel bad for their drug-addled line workers or its soused and impotent management.
DGBEACH
4 / 5 (3) Aug 12, 2009
socialism does NOT build cars - it simply destroys hope

Actually- socialism feeds the masses, educates children, cares for the sick and elderly, and it makes sure that everybody has the same chances in life...but of course THOSE are bad things, right?
defunctdiety
3.3 / 5 (3) Aug 12, 2009
To loose it would be very bad for the US and us its people. Loosing a major company like GM if it can be saved it is just plain stupid.


The government thanks you for your opinion and your blind trust.

Here's some facts: when you no longer adhere to the principles of a free market, you no longer have a free market, you no longer have capitalism. Daily our economy is being made to be INSEPARABLE from our government, or vice versus, dunno if you remember but that is essentially what this Nation was founded in opposition to. I don't know about you, but since my tax dollars started paying for these people who failed to do their job, I haven't had a say in what the company does in any form, I'm not getting to vote for a owner of the company, nothing, this is SO wrong.

The federal government is establishing precedent after precedent, so that when the hyper-inflation hits, from the rampant spending of all this money that doesn't exist (creating a bubble), comes full circle, the people will be able to do nothing but thank them when they're standing in the bread line.
defunctdiety
2.3 / 5 (3) Aug 12, 2009
Actually- socialism feeds the masses, educates children, cares for the sick and elderly, and it makes sure that everybody has the same chances in life...but of course THOSE are bad things, right?

You're forgetting, the principles of socialism stifle individuality, justify oppression, demonstrably oppose innovation and bankrupt national economies.
Ethelred
3.7 / 5 (3) Aug 12, 2009
The government thanks you for your opinion and your blind trust.


The government has no idea what my opinion is. And you are wrong about you claim of blind trust as well.

Here's some facts: when you no longer adhere to the principles of a free market, you no longer have a free market, you no longer have capitalism.


When you have completely free market you no longer have a free market. This is not a contradiction because the IS NO SUCH THING AS A FREE MARKET. Even Adam Smith knew a completlely free market would result in monopolies. The US had a free market in the 1800s. It worked a bit, not counting market collapses every twenty years, until the monopolies took control of the US economy. Fortunately the Trusts no longer control the US economy. Because of anti monopoly laws created by and administered by the government.

Unfortunately the government wasn't watching the REAL idiots that think that money comes from nothing that were controlling the lending systems recently.

You are the one that is going on blind Trust.

Daily our economy is being made to be INSEPARABLE from our government, or vice versus, dunno if you remember but that is essentially what this Nation was founded in opposition to.


Actually it was founded on the idea the colonies should govern themselves. Benjamin Franklyn had one order when he was representing the Colonies in Britain.

Do not under any circumstances accept representation.

He, by the way, was fond of Colonial Script. Essentially a government run banking system. He thought the Brits making Colonial Script illegal was a major cause of the Revolution.

http://en.wikiped...l_Script

I don't know about you, but since my tax dollars started paying for these people who failed to do their job, I haven't had a say in what the company does in any form, I'm not getting to vote for a owner of the company, nothing, this is SO wrong.


Talk to your representatives. We are the owner now. The government is just frightened of taking over real control. Much like you on this. I think it was a mistake. Bring a team of known businessmen. Men that have repaired companies before. Not T. Boone Pickens types either. The man has lost a fortune several times. Eisner types, even if he was a pain in the ass.

so that when the hyper-inflation hits, from the rampant spending of all this money that doesn't exist (creating a bubble), comes full circle,


If it goes on too long that will happen. The question is will the government do the rest of its job and stop pumping money into the economy. This has worked before. It has also been a disaster before when governments continued for too long.

---------------------------------------------------------

You're forgetting, the principles of socialism stifle individuality, justify oppression, demonstrably oppose innovation and bankrupt national economies.


Sweden is bankrupt? How did I fail to notice.

Ethelred
defunctdiety
2.3 / 5 (3) Aug 12, 2009
They may not know yours specifically (or they may), but they count on people like you to let them do whatever they want.

IS NO SUCH THING AS A FREE MARKET

You are wrong, there is a such thing as a healthy free market, and it is something that can be maintained with simple transparency and regulated over-sight, America just never had a chance to even see what one could do. Instead we've had this lovely planned economy, feaux-capitalism since 1913 (when the Federal Reserve was created), which oversaw the rise and hiding of monopolies (they haven't gone away, silly man).

But perhaps I should have focused on the importance of laissez faire policy instead of the free market as such, I wasn't specific enough. Still in lines with what you are saying, what we are seeing is plain and simple a government monopoly of the economy, it DOES NOT work this way, this way - it fails.

He thought the Brits making Colonial Script illegal was a major cause of the Revolution.

And you realize what you're saying is, that the Revolution was caused by their greater government being too directly involved and doing to much in their economy, right?...i.e. exactly what I said.

We are the owner now.


We had no choice or say in that this should happen they pushed it through so quickly, this was a gross violation of our governing body, grieved against every voting citizen.

Unfortunately the government wasn't watching the REAL idiots that think that money comes from nothing that were controlling the lending systems recently.


At least you see where some of the problem is. And if Franklin was fond of colonial script, he obviously couldn't see the future, because this is the result. The Federal Reserve and the practice of exorbitant fractional-reserve banking has gotten us to the exact point where we are today, which you so deftly point out.

If it goes on too long that will happen.


There is no IFs here my good fellow, it is on it's way, this is simply economic fact. You (and everyone else) had better get those wisdom teeth out now and that optional surgery done with, because in a few years you'll have to pay who knows how much more and it won't be the paltry 3-5% we've had the LUXURY of seeing in the past.

Thanks Ethel, once again, for serving to help my argument. Might I suggest you examining very closely exactly what it is your principles are, because you're implications are all over.
VOR
4 / 5 (5) Aug 14, 2009
many people are so stoopid they cant see that clearly neither pure capitalism or pure socialism
can work. Its simple, and obvious...pure socialism does indeed reduce greed driven ambition/initiative/innovation. And pure captalism with purely market driven morals results in nightmarish scenarios of no compassion,no medicine,no eduction,no business stimulous,no regulation, corporate abuse etc. Im so tired of the pure capitalist arguments such as the young should not have to subsidize healthcare for the old AS IF THEY ARE NOT GOING TO EVER BE OLD etc. Good 'socialism' is about having the WISDOM to see that capitalism can only strengthen the country AS A WHOLE when it includes social programs to fill in the gaps where GREED alone will not suffice. Captialism tends to only be concerned with investments that yeild obvious and shorter term gains, and ignores at the country's pervil the most important long term investments of all, like education. 'The market' has no concience. We must supplement that. Black-and-white arguments have NO PLACE in the captialism/socialism discussion...it is about degrees and the proper balance of the two.
The nation needs to GROW UP and raise the intelligence of these conversations. Socialism is not the dirty word here, its 'ignorance'.
MorituriMax
not rated yet Aug 15, 2009
My 1st question (which they NEVER cover in the reports or the TV Spots) is:

How much will my electric bill go up if I charge it every day?

Knowing that, I could figure out if my new electric bill cost will wipe out any savings from not buying as much gas.

2nd question: How much will a new battery run me since I have to replace it every 2 to 3 years?

I have heard in a recent story how the electricity cost will not be as bad since you can charge it at night when usage is low.

Ummmmmm, which might be true until the 2 to 3 million new electric car users all start charging at night.
MorituriMax
not rated yet Aug 15, 2009
@Ethelred, "Talk to your representatives. We are the owner now."

I'll believe that when I get a free car from "MY" company. Or even one that I get a "company owner" discount on.
Velanarris
5 / 5 (2) Aug 16, 2009
That this is possible in the United States of America is absolutely terrifying.


You are easily terrified. GM is one of only two US owned makers. To loose it would be very bad for the US and us its people. Loosing a major company like GM if it can be saved it is just plain stupid.

And if saving means using US government dollars it should mean US government ownership. If it can be saved then the US government should begin to sell it to the public. Now if the government retains it after it becomes profitable then it would be time to vote in people that will do the right thing. This is supposed to be temporary.

Ethelred


I think you're all missing the point here. This isn't scary because the government is now in the car business. Chrystler did this before and it was great.
The problem here is two fold.

1) the bailout was done for some businesses and not others. Tesla Motors didn't get a bail out, many other American car companies didn't get a bailout. This propped up two failing companies preventing the few smaller companies (mostly alternative transport) from being able to seize upon the hole in the market place. The goverment should not be in the business of proping up companies with bad business models.

How pissed would you be if the government handed Microsoft a bailout?

2) The government can't "save" anything. They can only prevent waste, which they do a terrible job of currently.

I'll believe that when I get a free car from "MY" company. Or even one that I get a "company owner" discount on.

You already got it. It's called CARS, nicknamed "Cash for Clunkers".
Velanarris
5 / 5 (1) Aug 16, 2009

Not everyone buys cars based on economics, it will cost 32.5k with the $7500 tax credit. People buy cars that cost 33k all the time. Imagine how many they will sell in europe where gas is rediculously expensive.


They don't use gasoline primarily. Most of European cars are high efficiency diesel. And those can be up to 100 mpg or better.
MorituriMax
5 / 5 (1) Aug 16, 2009
@Velanaris, "You already got it. It's called CARS, nicknamed "Cash for Clunkers"."

Which would be fine... if I were in any position to use the program. I bought a new truck in '07 and am in no way, shape, or form eligible for that. Nor do I have the money to just run out and spend $10,000 dollars to "save" $4,500 because suddenly the government is handing out money (which the dealers may or may not ever collect).

I might as well hope Ed McMahon shows up at my door tommorrow with my PCH Check. And yes, I know he is dead.

Basically, I didn't "already got it."
Damon_Hastings
5 / 5 (1) Aug 16, 2009
ARTICLE AUTHOR: PLEASE READ

That 230 mpg figure is a scam. See http://blogs.cons...economy/

Basically, GM decided to completely ignore the cost of the huge amount of electricity it takes to recharge the Volt every night. So of course they ended up with a spectacular mpg figure. They claim this was sanctioned by the EPA, but the EPA says otherwise. In fact, current EPA standards say that the battery must have the same charge at the end of the MPG test as at the beginning. Obviously, this requirement is unfair to plug-ins (which is probably why GM ignored it), and the EPA is developing new standards -- but they will NOT simply ignore the cost of electricity! Read the above article for more.

But even if the EPA did sanction this, the discrepancy would at least be worth a mention in this article. In fact, if the EPA sanctioned such deceptive marketing, it would be worth a whole article just to discuss that. I saw the same exact deception in the recent physorg article on the plug-in hybrid Hummer (http://www.physor...993.html ) -- and again without any explanation in the article. I don't expect journalists to research and explain such discrepancies on a "normal" news site, but I have a higher standard for a science news site.
Velanarris
5 / 5 (1) Aug 16, 2009
I might as well hope Ed McMahon shows up at my door tommorrow with my PCH Check. And yes, I know he is dead.

Basically, I didn't "already got it."

Which is exactly why I disagree with the program. Your tax dollars paid for it, but you can't use it. Same with me, bought a new car in 07 and a second for the wife in 08. Both of our trade-ins would have qualified.
Paradox
not rated yet Aug 16, 2009

Not everyone buys cars based on economics, it will cost 32.5k with the $7500 tax credit. People buy cars that cost 33k all the time. Imagine how many they will sell in europe where gas is rediculously expensive.

well it was over 4$ U.S a gallon where I live, and even at 33k it would cost me about as much to drive as my Saturn would at 4$ a gallon over 10 years.
I am all for electric cars, but it just doesn't make sense, because if it broke down, the repairs would cost far more than repairs on the Saturn I think.
just my 2 cents.
Velanarris
not rated yet Aug 17, 2009
Unfortunately the government wasn't watching the REAL idiots that think that money comes from nothing that were controlling the lending systems recently.


And just for the record, money does come from nothing. It's the earliest "virtual reality" we've ever engaged in. If the Federal Reserve was eliminated today, the United States would have no currency. We don't back it with a hard asset, it is a FIAT currency.

Fiat money is money declared by a government to be legal tender.[1] The term derives from the Latin fiat, meaning "let it be done". Fiat money achieves value because a government accepts it in payment of taxes and says it can be used within the country as a "tender" (offering) to pay all debts. In effect, this allows it to be used to buy goods and services and to pay tax. Where fiat money is used as currency, the term fiat currency is used. The most widely-held reserve currency, the US dollar, is a fiat currency, as are other widely held currencies like the Euro, Pound Sterling and the Yen.

A feature of all fiat money is its (typically exclusive) acceptability to the government for payment of taxes and charges.


Taxes are the only thing that make those folding notes in your wallet worth anything.

There's an old economist joke. What does Fiat really mean? Answer: For Internal Auditing and Taxation only.
DGBEACH
not rated yet Aug 17, 2009

You're forgetting, the principles of socialism stifle individuality, justify oppression, demonstrably oppose innovation and bankrupt national economies.

The same could also be said for American-style capitalism...by millions of African (and other "non-white")-Americans, whose yearly income never rises above the national poverty level. And they can only sit back and watch as their "White Masters" bankrupt the great country that their fathers, grand fathers, and children have died protecting over the last century. These people have a thing or two to say about the virtues of socialism, because at least they can feed their children under its veil.
Surely individuality can be maintained, if the goals of a society are to protect its citizens.
I live in a country that maintains a free-market, where anybody can be successful if they're willing to work hard...that provides free health-care to ALL of its citizens...which also recognizes each individual...and whose innovations and inventiveness are recognized worldwide...and whose banking system has NOT collapsed, unlike its big noisy neighbor to the south.

Its democratic socialism. And it works!
Velanarris
not rated yet Aug 17, 2009
Surely individuality can be maintained, if the goals of a society are to protect its citizens.
Yes, if the goals of Society are to protect the citizens. Not if the goals of goverment are to establish market rules.

You make a good argument, then break form immediately afterward. Are we talking about society or are we talking about government?

Less government interference yields greater societal influence. You can't say society and government are interchangable as we all know society and government are rarely the same things.
Ethelred
not rated yet Aug 17, 2009
I think you're all missing the point here. This isn't scary because the government is now in the car business. Chrystler did this before and it was great.


I was replying to someone that thought differently. I think it a bit scary because it might fail and the money we the people spent will go down the rathole. Chrysler survived that crisis but eventually it failed.

1) the bailout was done for some businesses and not others. Tesla Motors didn't get a bail out, many other American car companies didn't get a bailout.


Tesla isn't big enough to damage the US economy. Even in a strong economy it might still be unable to succeed though the odds would be better. Ford said it didn't need one. Chrysler isn't American anymore.

However if the Bush administration had acted when the first financial corporation went(sorry but I forget who that was and don't feel like looking) largely because someone had personal issues with it then the dominoe effect would likely have lessened. At least some economists think so anyway. It partly a case of ideology but personalities were definitly involved. The next company to start down the drain had Bush friends and they got help.

The goverment should not be in the business of proping up companies with bad business models.


The idea here is to fix the company because so much depends on it. Whether it will work is open to question. GM has sucked for years yet Ford seems to have the basic business model and it is still solvent. Perhaps I missed something there. I don't own a car and don't follow that business.

How pissed would you be if the government handed Microsoft a bailout?


It doesn't need one so speculation would be worthless as it would depend on the situation at the time. So let us set up a hypothetical MS situation.

- MS has a government supported foreign competitor.
- Foreign governments demand that business use the competitior.
- Foreign governments refuse to allow MS to even sell to the general public.
- MS borrows money (as opposed to having enough cash to survive for years as it does) from a company that then proceeds to engage in risky (stupid as the present idiots did) investments and then calls in MS debts to cover its own failures.

Then I would consider government help to be reasonable. And its not all that different from the present situation though it is more extreme.

2) The government can't "save" anything. They can only prevent waste, which they do a terrible job of currently.


This is a Right Wing fantasy, much like the claim that governments can't produce anything(See the Tennessee Valley Authority Authority for the counter and a rather large number of hydro power dams all over the US). As you pointed out already the government DID save Chrysler though it didn't stick as they went back to their old ways of selling cars that couldn't compete when things got tough. Just as GM has done. When there is money Detroit would go down the dinosaur path. Then they would not have the tools to deal with the hard times.

Then again in this case saving GM is an attempt to prevent waste.

It's called CARS, nicknamed "Cash for Clunkers".


Speaking of government waste. This doesn't apear to have been a well designed concept. Seems to be a case of throwing money at a problem. Must be a bigger boon to Japan than the US.

So far Obama is not my favorite President. Where is Bill when we need him? He understood the economy. Obama may be better than Bush but even his father was better. He didn't have VP Maddog trying to run things for him. Well not as many things. It has been decades since the Republican Party had people that were competent on the economy. Instead the write articles for that IDIOT Cato Insitute, the place where they claim the Gold Standard is the answer to everthing and no it isn't a claim of magical powers. They lie a lot at the Cato Insane Asylum.

------------------------------

[Q]And just for the record, money does come from nothing. It's the earliest "virtual reality" we've ever engaged in. If the Federal Reserve was eliminated today, the United States would have no currency. We don't back it with a hard asset, it is a FIAT currency.[/Q]

Fiat currencies don't actually come from nothing. In the US and most other countries they started by borrowing on land. It is true though the main support for ANY system of money, including gold(that is one the Cato Inanity's lies) is based on perception by the users of the money. At present the US mostly is borrowing from the future and if we don't start paying it back(or a least stop the borrowing) the economy will go to Wiemar Hell. I think even Obama gets that. I have my doubts that Bush did.

Ethelred

Sorry for the new signature, but He Needed Killun.

From QubitTamer's fake profile

Quantum Physicist, torturer of AGW religious zealots like Ethelred because i laugh at his hysterics.


Qubitwit gets the rest of August in my signature for aiming his idiocy at me. Again.
Velanarris
not rated yet Aug 17, 2009
Ethel, I have some talking points for you to consider.

Chrysler got the loan "at a government rate" from the Fed. Technically there wasn't a bailout but a government backed loan. Semantics I know, but important when comparing the two issues. If Chrysler hadn't paid the cash back by end of term the Fed was going to liquidate the entire company.

As for GM being too big to fail, GM wouldn't have failed, at least not as a single company. Perhaps GMAC or Hummer or Pontiac would have been closed and liquidated right off the bat. Money would be lost by many sectors, but the economy would live on and I deeply doubt that would have tail spun us into depression. As it stands I'm still awaiting a bust in another sector to put us further down than we are currently. The big kicker in this entire debate is the fact that GM used their bailout money to complete foreign projects.

Perhaps I have a little fiscal rage over the manner in which the bailout was performed, but, any 5 year old knows if you give someone a dollar, you state the terms of use ahead of time. Not after the money has been spent.

In your hypothetical I'm not quite getting the correlation, if you could clarify a few points I can possibly speak to or agree with you on it.


- MS has a government supported foreign competitor.
- Foreign governments demand that business use the competitior.
- Foreign governments refuse to allow MS to even sell to the general public.
I need an example here where GM isn't able to sell their vehicles in a foreign market. If you're referring to Japan, well, that's going to be a tough sell seeing as they have almost no vehicle demand when compared to China or the rest of southeast asia.

- MS borrows money (as opposed to having enough cash to survive for years as it does) from a company that then proceeds to engage in risky (stupid as the present idiots did) investments and then calls in MS debts to cover its own failures.
Which company did GM borrow money from that wasn't a subsidiary of GM?


DGBEACH
not rated yet Aug 17, 2009
Less government interference yields greater societal influence. You can't say society and government are interchangable as we all know society and government are rarely the same things.

What ever happened to "By the People, for the People"...? Isn't THAT an American credo? Maybe its one of the major differences between our countries. Here we actually believe that the government is run by society, not the other way around...or at least our politicians seem not to have forgotten what its like to be just an average Joe 'the plumber". - Being from Quebec I know EXACTLY what its like when government decides the fate of its populous, without its consent. Happily the right people won :)
defunctdiety
not rated yet Aug 17, 2009
And just for the record, money does come from nothing. It's the earliest "virtual reality" we've ever engaged in. If the Federal Reserve was eliminated today, the United States would have no currency. We don't back it with a hard asset, it is a FIAT currency.

The Federal Reserve absolutely has to be changed though if we the People ever want to see a more stable, sustainable economy. The out of control fractional-reserve banking policies the FR and our nations banks employ will destroy the American Dream as we know it, if it hasn't already.

Certainly we can't have an inelastic currency, but the pyramid scheme that is banking now has American's buying back their own money for more than it's worth (TARP). It's ludicrous.

The government has given the FR hundreds of billions of tax-dollars-to-be(our money), which were given to the banks and in turn used to issue loans to Americans who will have to pay back that loan plus the interest probably totaling to the worth of that loan again. They took our money, gave it to private business, so that they could give it back to us and get paid for it, by us.

It's hyper-inflationary, it's criminal, and Americans grab their ankles and take it with a smile and a thanks.

It's out of control. Our government is out of our control.
defunctdiety
not rated yet Aug 17, 2009
The same could also be said for American-style capitalism...


Don't get me wrong. I love Canada, especially your musicians, some of your comedians, and all of your fishing spots.

And I'm not gonna argue that those characteristics I mentioned couldn't be said of "America-capitalism", it's scary how accurate the majority of it is towards it. But obviously I'm not a proponent of the American government/economic system.

Along these lines, Canada doesn't have anywhere near the overhead that America has (i.e. ~1/10th the population), and if the number of illegal aliens was accurately known it'd probably be under 1/10th. Far less infrastructure to maintain as well. Admittedly I'm not too familiar with Canada's economic functioning. However I know your nation can balance it's imports and exports. What are your historical unemployment rates like? Before the economic decline. My point should have been that, what works in (insert socialist country here) will not necessarily work in the U.S.
DGBEACH
not rated yet Aug 18, 2009
My point should have been that, what works in (insert socialist country here) will not necessarily work in the U.S.

You are right on that point for sure. An extreme shift in mentality (i.e. enlightenment) would have to occur before the American population would accept anything like socialism, which is sad really because I think that it is the only way that they will be able survive the upcoming strife (paying back ALL THAT MONEY). One has to wonder what was going through their minds as they were borrowing it from a communist(?)/socialist country, China.

The only bright spot for us (Canada) will be the return of our musicians and comedians, as things get bad down there. Now THAT will be good reason to have a cold (and strong) one! Cheers :)
Ethelred
not rated yet Aug 18, 2009
Chrysler got the loan "at a government rate" from the Fed. Technically there wasn't a bailout but a government backed loan. Semantics I know, but important when comparing the two issues. If Chrysler hadn't paid the cash back by end of term the Fed was going to liquidate the entire company.


Yes that is how I remember it also. I think taking over Chrysler would have been justifiable then. My thinking on this is that if the US takes the risks then US should be able to profit off it. Nothing big just a reasonable profit.

As for GM being too big to fail, GM wouldn't have failed, at least not as a single company.


I don't know about that. It had to go through bankruptcy even with the cash infusion. Maybe a few parts would have survived. Someone bought Saturn for instance.

Money would be lost by many sectors, but the economy would live on and I deeply doubt that would have tail spun us into depression


Uh we are in a depression. But I will grant you that it wouldn't have done it on its own. Not too big to fail in a good economy. At that moment in time I think it was a bad idea to let it fail. Five years from now it might be different. Sure do hope so.

The big kicker in this entire debate is the fact that GM used their bailout money to complete foreign projects.


Things like that is why I think the Feds didn't go far enough. They let the idiots make more questionable decisions instead of replacing more of the idiots at the top. Of course they might not have had much choice.

And yes I could be wrong on it. Its a gamble.

In your hypothetical I'm not quite getting the correlation, if you could clarify a few points I can possibly speak to or agree with you on it.


Easily.

How pissed would you be if the government handed Microsoft a bailout?


You asked. I answered as best I could. Since it isn't going to happen I had to create a hypothetical and took the idea that of making a justifiable case for rescuing MS. There was no requirement to emulate GM so I didn't.

It is important in any task to not forget the goal and avoid getting mired in details that seem relevant when the REAL goal is lost sight of. In this case a hypothetical MS disaster. Choose a disaster that fits your needs unless one is already there.

I am not exactly thrilled with the situation at GM so I don't feel an overweening need to defend the present situation. Indeed I made it clear that I don't think the Feds went far enough. Take it over or leave it alone. The idea that the government could screw things up worse than the idiots at GM already did is ludicrous and entirely based on an ideology I find silly at best. People are people. They can screw things up at all levels and they fix things at all levels. There is nothing magic about private enterprise that stops it from making a mess. Nor is there anything magic about the government that makes in incapable of doing anything right. There is one difference to keep in mind. The higher up you go with government the more people are looking things over. Unfortunately the various news agencies have forgotten how to be the Forth Estate and have gone haring off after entertainment value, and the new Web watchers have their thumbs up their ideological asses.

GM already proved itself unfit at the top levels. No company in the world was large enough to take over and fix the mess. Some things only governments have the resources for. I hope the gamble works out.

If you're referring to Japan, well, that's going to be a tough sell seeing as they have almost no vehicle demand when compared to China or the rest of southeast asia.


GM has no cars fit for Asia at all but it wouldn't do them any good to do so as China is not likely to allow any foreign company to sell significant amounts of any consumer product. Much like Japan only with ten times the population. In any case the hypothetical was intended to support ME. My suspicion is that GM didn't make any effort to penetrate the Asian markets because they thought it would be futile. Plus they had a lot of bad habits and they have had them for a long time.

I have this image in my head right now. Of the Feds sending in a hit squad to take out the Junkies at the top. Say goodbye to your little friends and that mound of Golden Parachutes.

Which company did GM borrow money from that wasn't a subsidiary of GM?


I think you probably have the idea by now BUT to make it clear.

I don't care if they did. It was my hypothetical. It was loaded to show how a case might be made to rescue MS. Frankly I think the Worlds Smartest Used Car Salesman that is in charge at MS is probably too smart to let MS go that way. Maybe his replacement in the future. GM was once actually competent. Companies can change for the better, just like people. Unfortunately change for the worse is easier to do.

Ethelred

Sorry for the new signature. But It Needed Killun.

From QubitTamer's fake profile

Quantum Physicist, torturer of AGW religious zealots like Ethelred because i laugh at his hysterics.


Qubitwit gets the rest of August in my signature for aiming his idiocy at me. Again.
Ethelred
not rated yet Aug 18, 2009
One has to wonder what was going through their minds as they were borrowing it from a communist(?)/socialist country, China.


Its not that the US is borrowing from China. Its the US debts are being bought up by China. And the Gulf States and many other places that have cash and credit available. Once the debts are out there no one can really control who buys the paper.

At least that is what I am under the impression is going on.

Ethelred

Sorry for the new signature. But It Needed Killun.

From QubitTamer's fake profile

Quantum Physicist, torturer of AGW religious zealots like Ethelred because i laugh at his hysterics.


Qubitwit gets the rest of August in my signature for aiming his idiocy at me. Again.
Velanarris
not rated yet Aug 18, 2009
Take it over or leave it alone. The idea that the government could screw things up worse than the idiots at GM already did is ludicrous and entirely based on an ideology I find silly at best. People are people. They can screw things up at all levels and they fix things at all levels.
True, but at least a CEO can make a decision. The government can't get out of it's own way on simple issues, let alone the business of running a business. The government is too ponderously slow to do anything other than write the check.

GM has no cars fit for Asia at all but it wouldn't do them any good to do so as China is not likely to allow any foreign company to sell significant amounts of any consumer product. Much like Japan only with ten times the population. In any case the hypothetical was intended to support ME. My suspicion is that GM didn't make any effort to penetrate the Asian markets because they thought it would be futile. Plus they had a lot of bad habits and they have had them for a long time.


Best selling foreign auto manufacturer in China is Buick, which is why they didn't drop the ailing US car line. It owns the Asian markets. We may look down on them in the US but the Asians love em.

You and I tend to agree more than we disagree, but on this point I'm going to have to drink the "market economist" kool-aid.

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