Category Archives: automobile
Here’s something to watch out for that you probably haven’t thought of: if you are shopping for a used car you should be on the lookout for flood-damaged vehicles that often hit the market after a major storm. They may not come from your particular geographic area, but the storm actually covered a lot of ground.
Once owners of damaged cars settle up with their insurance companies their vehicles are sometimes refurbished and resold. An unsuspecting buyer in a state unaffected by the disaster is the prime target. Long after the seller is gone, the new owner finds it is an unreliable car. Electrical and mechanical problems can then surface, and there is no recourse against the seller.
When the flood waters recede, they often leave behind damaged cars, and that’s where trouble can begin for used-car buyers. After the owners of damaged cars settle up with their insurance companies, vehicles are sometimes refurbished and resold. And sometimes, a middleman buyer intentionally hides a car’s history as a flood-damaged vehicle through a process known as “title washing” and sells it to an unsuspecting buyer in a state unaffected by the disaster. Electrical and mechanical problems then surface later — long after the seller is gone — leaving the new owner with an unreliable car and no recourse against the seller.
According to Fraud Guides, if you suspect a local car dealer is committing fraud by knowingly selling a flood car or a salvaged vehicle as a good-condition used car, contact your auto insurance company, local law enforcement agency or the National Insurance Crime Bureau at (800) TEL-NICB (835-6422).
Of course, the best advice when trying to avoid a flood-damaged vehicle is the adage you’ve heard so often: If a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is.
- Sandy could impact unsuspecting used-car buyers (bottomline.nbcnews.com)
- The risks of buying a write-off motor – Confused.com (confused.com)
- BBB warns about flood-damaged cars (charlotteobserver.com)
- BBB warns about flood-damaged cars (newsobserver.com)
- Water Damaged Cars May Flood Local Dealerships Following Severe Weather (prweb.com)
Following my radio show this morning, I’m sitting over at Mellow Moods having coffee while I wait for my friend Cecil to pick me up
He’s over at workshop at the Contemporary American Theater Festival and are schedules our slightly skewed.
This not being able to drive, what I have been condemned to since my accident, stands a real possibility of going on for the rest of my life. If I were in a city with public transportation to everything going on, it would be one thing, but I’m a few miles out of town in an empty, rural neighborhood where walking to anything is out of the question and there are no buses or anything else.
I’m dependent on family and friends to go out, can no longer do the grocery shopping, which I enjoyed, and, basically I feel trapped. The internet is my only way out, so you, dear blog readers, are now my connection to the world. I enjoy hearing from you whether you agree with me or not.
Think I’ll go buy another cup of coffee while it becomes 102° outside.
IF General Motors, Ford and Chrysler get the bailout that their chief executives asked for yesterday, you can kiss the American automotive industry goodbye. It won’t go overnight, but its demise will be virtually guaranteed.
Without that bailout, Detroit will need to drastically restructure itself. With it, the automakers will stay the course — the suicidal course of declining market shares, insurmountable labor and retiree burdens, technology atrophy, product inferiority and never-ending job losses. Detroit needs a turnaround, not a check.
- Mitt Romney editorializing in the New York Times
It seems that Detroit DID turn around with a check. Perhaps it is a good thing that we didn’t listen to him then.
- FLIP FLOP ALERT: Mitt Romney Is Taking Credit For The Auto Bailout (businessinsider.com)
- Romney taking credit for auto industry success (news.yahoo.com)
- Romney takes credit for bailout (toledoblade.com)
- How Romney Got the Bailout Wrong (bigthink.com)
- Romney Claims To Still Have ‘The Same Position On The Auto Bailout’ He Had ‘In The Very Beginning’ (thinkprogress.org)
- Mitt Romney wants a round of applause for saving the auto industry (dailykos.com)
- Romney: ‘I’ll take a lot of credit’ for auto industry success (politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com)
Now, speaking in Chrysler heavy Ohio, Romney is taking credit for Obama’s actions… they were his idea.
How does he sit down at all when his pants are always on fire?
And not just a couple of mistaken notions here and there, but outright lies…some of them so far out that I couldn’t have imagined them if I tried.
Why is it, then, that we let them keep doing it? Why do the news shows repeat these gems in their speeches without pointing out the basic lack of truth? Perhaps there is influence being peddled here.
For instance, Mitt is always saying that Obama has made the recession worse…without mentioning, of course, that the Dow hit its 4-year high and NASDAQ hit its 11-year high under the President’s time in office. Or Chrysler posted its first profit in more than a decade and expects those profits to continue growing. The industry has hired enough workers to make up for all those laid off during the recession, and American and foreign automakers plan to add 167,000 jobs at American plants this year. So how has he made the recession worse?
Romney, Ryan and others have said that taxes are skyrocketing under Obama.
In reality, the U.S. tax burden is not only hovering around a historical low — it’s also low compared to other advanced industrialized nations.
Boehner has said that the President has accomplished NOTHING in his first term, ignoring everything from wiping out Osama Bin Laden, saving the auto industry and getting his health care plan PASSED.
According to Romney: President Obama “went around the world and apologized for America.” Obama, however, has never used the word ‘apologize’ in a speech about U.S. policy or history. Any assertion that he has apologized for U.S. actions rests on an intentionally misleading interpretation of the President’s words.
The Republicans lie about everything. They deny the reality of global warming and the carbon emissions crisis. They deny the responsibility of Reagan and Bush for the deficits that they caused and that Obama inherited (along with a recession). They deny Clinton the credit for the vast economic growth that took place in 1990s as a result of his economic policies and for the fiscal sanity that his policies accomplished. They blame everything on the “liberal” academia and give credit for everything to Republicans, never mind that academic science is behind everything that business sells, and without it capitalism would be nothing more than exchange of basic commodities.
And they repeat this stuff over and over… a trick that Goering used in Nazi Germany when they had control of the media: repeat a lie often enough and people start thinking it is true.
Then there are the two big ones that Republicans try hard not to deny, but continue to perpetuate: that Obama was born in another country and that Obama is a socialist/communist trying to nationalize America’s industries (evidenced in the editorial page press by cartoonists like Glenn McCoy:
So dealing with Republican lies now through November’s election is going to be an ongoing headache. I’ll just have to make sure that I point them out with some regularity and hope it keeps a few people from buying into this crap.
- Boehner emerges as Romney’s chief ally on Capitol Hill (firstread.msnbc.msn.com)
- John Boehner’s blues (salon.com)
- Boehner escalates attacks on Obama (politico.com)
- Another Trumped Up Lie Goes Pop In Obama’s Face (tarpon.wordpress.com)
- John Boehner Rips Obama’s Record: President ‘Lost His Courage,’ ‘Checked Out Last Labor Day’ (mediaite.com)
We’ve already named the car The Hearse, since it is black… or, as Elly says, we’ve never had a black car. The other choices were white or teal (which Elly refused to get.)
Now we have two Fits… Elly’s is a grey 2008 version. I think it’s a pretty good car… we haven’t had any complaints. Even though it’s small, there’s a lot of room in it.
Anyway, I’ll add more later when I get the new wheels and drive ‘em around.
As a child, “Butzi” – as he was known to his family and business associates – enjoyed designing and building his own toys. He studied at the Ulm School of Design before joining the design department of Porsche.
The Porsche 911 was designed in 1963 and went on sale in 1964, as a rear engine vehicle that cost US$5,500.00. The automaker debuted the seventh generation 911 late last year. It now sells for about US$115,000.
Porsche headed the company’s design studio from 1962 to 1972.
- “Porsche was his life and what he stood for”: Porsche 911 designer Ferdinand Alexander Porsche dies aged 76 (mirror.co.uk)
- Ferdinand Porsche, 911 sports car designer, dies (newsok.com)
- Ferdinand Porsche, legendary 911 sports car creator, dies at 76 (rt.com)
- Confirmed: Ferdinand Alexander Porsche – designer of the 911 – dies at age 76 (autoblog.com)
- Ferdinand Porsche, designer of 911 and grandson of car company’s founder, dies at 76 (mercurynews.com)
- Ferdinand Porsche Dies at 76 (bloomberg.com)
- Ferdinand Alexander Porsche, 1935-2012 (treehugger.com)
So here I am officially carless and looking for a solution. Elly and I both think, with our new lifestyle and all, I should be looking for a small, relatively cheap pick-up truck. Therefore I am researching small Toyotas, Nissans and others, looking for a basic truck at a low price (therefore 2012 instead of 2013… unless I find a used truck in good condition.
Elly is not in favor of used cars, since the last two died under me (although, in retrospect, I got my money’s worth out of both of them.)
So, the next week or so might find a number of cancelled Doctors’ appts, and maybe some lifts to the radio station and back, but that’s my story.
And I’m stuck with it.
I managed to roll it off the road to the side, then proceeded on the unimagineably complex and bewildering communication via iPhone to the Triple A. It took nine calls, during which I was switched all over the place to find someone who represented this little piece of woodland in Harpers Ferry, WV, and was repeatedly disconnected, forced to call again, give my membership number, spell my name, describe the problem, be told that I was at the wrong `office, but would be transferred….
Finally yelling at the last, really undeserving guy who I hadn’t spoken with before, I got notice that a tow truck was coming and waited for an hour until it go there. Total times with calls and waits was close to 2 hours.
Now Brown’s Auto Service picked up the Subaru this morning and with luck they can get it running today and I can find someone to give me a ride over to the west side of Shepherdstown to pick it up.
Not a great day at the beginning.
The truck and the Shepherd University boys are out again today to do two more runs from the townhouse to the farmette…and even then we won’t be done. I did 2.5 carloads yesterday with the help of my buddy John Case (thanks so much, John) and another carload the day before and will probably be doing them all week.
Meanwhile the new house is a pile of boxes and other unpacked items waiting for racks and shelves to show up… hopefully we’ll put lots of these things away this week. I especially would like to see the kitchen more workable.
Right now I’m over at WSHC waiting for my show to start (an hour earlier and an hour shorter today due to baseball season)… then I’ll be going over to the townhouse to fill my car while the boys fill the truck.
Onward and upward.
We’re hearing the primary campaigners accuse President Obama of personally seeing to it that gas prices have gone to extremes (I saw one station at 3.95 a gallon in Charles Town yesterday). Well, I think we should hear what the President has said on the subject:
“You can bet that since it’s an election year, they’re already dusting off their 3-point plan for $2 gas — and I’ll save you the suspense: Step one is to drill and step two is to drill. And then step three is to keep drilling. We heard the same line in 2007 when I was running for President. We hear the same thing every year. We’ve heard the same thing for 30 years. Well, the American people aren’t stupid. They know that’s not a plan, especially since we’re already drilling. That’s a bumper sticker. It’s not a strategy to solve our energy challenge. That’s a strategy to get politicians through an election.” -Barack Obama
Frankly, if any of those yo-yos (Newt, especially, who is left with not much else to push than this) could actually get gas down to $2.00 a gallon they have enough congressional support to do it now.
Have you wondered why they don’t?
- Obama: “We can’t just drill our way to lower gas prices” (ecopolitology.org)
- President Obama: Republicans Are ‘Licking Their Chops’ Over Rising Gas Prices (mediaite.com)
- Gas Prices Are an Endogenous Variable (forbes.com)
- Let’s Have An Election That Hangs On Gas Prices (treehugger.com)
- Obama: ‘No quick fixes’ on gas prices (politico.com)
- Obama and Republican trade blame on gas prices in weekly addresses (politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com)
- President Obama and an ‘all-of-the-above’ approach to American energy (dailykos.com)
- POTUS quotes POLITICO as proof of gas price politicization (politico.com)
- The Truth About Political Attacks Over High Gas Prices (tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com)
…not a lot. Just my tools and tool tables, some folding chairs, Elly’s bicycle and some glass lamp covers to install upstairs (Elly’s project). I’ve also got a bent mailbox outside that I have to fix… then I’m going home to pack more stuff and take care of the dogs.
The pups don’t realize it, but we are installing one of those electronic devices to keep them in the yard using a transmitter and zapping collars. It turned out to be easier and cheaper than putting in a new fence. We have 30 days to try it out, train the dogs to it and make sure it works. Does anyone out there have experience with this that you would share?
Figured I’d take my photograph sitting in the new house while I post this. The house is pretty empty, but there is a nice light coming in from the windows and I don’t look that bad.
OK…time to go. Can’t waste more time.
Here’s an essay I did a while ago… it still applies. Sorry I’m being lazy on this holiday…
This is the Holiday which, as far as I can tell, is designed for Car Dealers more than it is to revere the men who made our country great.
When I was growing up we had separate holidays for Washington’s Birthday and Lincoln’s Birthday. They first honored the man who was our first President and who led us through the military activities of the Revolution. We also remember every year that he voluntarily stepped down after two terms when he could easily have become a lifetime American King. The second holiday honored the man who kept our nation together, freed the slaves and suffered assassination.
These holidays were originally held on actual birthdates, no matter where in the week they fell (Washington on the 22nd, Lincoln on the 12th). Then, as holidays and long weekends became inextricably connected in order to satisfy labor demands, they were moved to nearest Mondays on a regular basis. When it became clear from our corporate citizens (as defined by the Supreme Court last month) that we had too many holidays throwing business off… and wanting to make room for a holiday for Martin Luther King (highly deserved, btw), the birthdays of the two Presidents were combined into President’s Day.
Without a particular focus on a particular President, the holiday was easily co-opted by automobile dealers as the big sale holiday designed to get folks to part with money in the bleak month of February, thus cleaning out inventories before the Spring announcement of new models for the coming year. And that seems to be where we have stayed.
So happy President’s Day. Take the kids who are out of school with you to run around the showrooms (that will act as necessary protective measure… salesmen will get to their price more quickly just to get the little devils out of their sales area) as you shop for new wheels.
Have a good time.
I’m getting ready for a solar energy presentation at Town Hall this evening. Actually, that’s a good way to celebrate Presidents Day… energy awareness makes the country better.
- Happy President’s Day: Do You Know Why We Celebrate President’s Day, How it Happened or Who Invented It? (thehispanicblog.com)
- Presidents Day 2012: Fly your flag today (timpanogos.wordpress.com)
- Happy Presidents’ Day (geneveith.com)
- President’s Day 2012 (hamrodallas.com)
- Historic and Fun Couples’ Getaways for Presidents Day Weekend (redenvelope.com)
- Nixon, Reagan Libraries Mark Presidents Day Holiday With Special Events (losangeles.cbslocal.com)
- When Freedom’s Ring Isn’t a Cash Register’s (cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com)
In the dozen or so Super Bowl ads yesterday, several were from automobile manufacturers. So when Chrysler presented Clint Eastwood in a spot called “Halftime in America” which, in very general terms, seemed to highlight President Obama’s Recovery program, Karl Rove and many of the Republican candidates and characters tried to make it a huge “no no.”
After all, if Obama’s recovery activities helped Detroit to start its comeback (especially with the just profitable Chrysler), then the economy isn’t dying as Romney keeps saying.
- Rachel Maddow Blog: Clint Eastwood wins the Super Bowl (kaystreet.wordpress.com)
- Clint Eastwood Is Bullish On America (duanegraham.wordpress.com)
- Clint Eastwood’s pro-Obama Super Bowl ad? (politico.com)
- Chrysler’s Eastwood Ad: Pro Obama? (blogs.wsj.com)
- Eastwood Ad Draws Political Response (myfoxphoenix.com)
- Clint Eastwood Chrysler Super Bowl ad appears pro-Obama (thegrio.com)
- Chrysler’s Super Bowl “Halftime” ad with Clint Eastwood: a roadmap for America? (vancouversun.com)
Looking at commuter problems in this country pale when we look elsewhere. This from All Hat, No Cattle (one of my all-time favorite blogs):
People ride on top of a commuter train in Jakarta, Indonesia, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2012. Indonesia has gone to imaginative extremes to try to stop commuters from illegally riding the roofs of trains, hosing down the scofflaws with red paint, threatening them with dogs and appealing for help from religious leaders. Now the authorities have an intimidating and possibly even deadly new tactic: Suspending rows of grapefruit-sized concrete balls to rake over the top of trains as they pull out of stations, or when they go through rail crossings. Photo/Dita Alangkara
We have to pick up Milo and leave from my daughter’s house by 7:30, so we’re up early taking care of the dogs and getting ready to go.
Flying on a National Holiday (Happy 4th, by the way) seems strange to me, but that is what his mother arranged and he’ll be back in Connecticut before lunch.
Meanwhile, the blog will be down most of the day.
Have a nice one.
Looks like another hot day in Shepherdstown as we wait for the rain (30% chance this afternoon, 50% tonight, 60% tomorrow). Yesterday it was up to 95° and felt like it was going up to 100° when I was out walking the dogs.
Elly will spend time out in the gardens today with her wide brimmed straw hat looking like a lady farmer. I think she enjoys the heat.
The coming weekend has more for me to do… Tomorrow morning, on WSHC, John and I have Delegate Doyle coming in to the show and a friend of John’s calling in from Vermont to talk about their new single-payer health care system. If you can tune in locally, we’re at 89.7 FM. If you are farther out (anywhere in the world, actually) you can get us at http://www.897wshc.org. 7:30 to 9:00 AM.
Friday night there is a meeting to throw ideas around for the Rube Carnival that G. Bradley Sanders is throwing at The Folly in August. This is my first time meeting with the group (Bradley and I had coffee at Mellow Moods the other day) and I’m looking forward to it.
Saturday morning is Morgan’s Grove Market and I’ll be wandering around… probably settling down over at the Four Seasons Bookstore booth. If you see m there, say Hi.
Then, on Sunday, Elly and I are taking two of our grandsons, John and Jason, to DC to go to the Air and Space Museum. So it looks like the Weekend plans are complete.
- What is Wrong With you People? (wdednh.wordpress.com)
- Tommy Doulgas takes Vermont (macleans.ca)
- Economix: Vermont’s Move Toward Single-Payer Health Insurance (economix.blogs.nytimes.com)
- Yea! Vermont Passes Single Payer Health Care Bill (iflizwerequeen.com)
- Blue Skies Spring Look (brooklynagriculture.wordpress.com)
- Professional Earth Eternal Gold Seller Told What Y – Changzhou, China (travelpod.com)
Coming up at 3:00 PM Today… Sign on to my weekly radio version of Under the LobsterScope (sorry I missed the regular Tuesday Morning schedule).
- International Blog Talk Radio – Skokie, IL – 03 – AmericanTowns.com (jvtur.wordpress.com)
- Mark Allen gives report and analysis of Rev. Al Sharpton’s upcoming “Measuring The Movement” 12 Month Action Plan on BlogTalk Radio (chicagonow.com)
- Interview with Alease Michelle on Professor Locs- Blog Talk Radio (aleasemichelle.typepad.com)
Take a look at these figures (I picked this up at Talk and Politics):
These are the big oil companies we are paying billions to subsidize while the cost of the gasoline they are putting out has made it more expensive to go to work, or to the grocery store (where prices have gone up do to the transport of food products suffering from increased gas and diesel prices), or to the mall for clothes shopping for kids. Don’t even mention driving on summer vacations around the country.
It makes me wonder what kind of protests can we do that would effect the big oil companies and the government that subsidizes them. We could cut out driving for a week and show that we can reduce their income, but this probably hurts us more than them. We can get on the phone with our Representatives (Federal AND State, both of whom set gas taxes) and smother them with complaints and demands that they eliminate subsidies, make federal reserves available, and, finally, regulate prices so that oil companies can’t raise them (these have all been done before and have worked.) E-mail flooding can be used here, too.
We are now at a time when government of the people, by the people and for the people is standing a desperate test. The prominence of and political control by corporations ( who have been backed by the Supreme Court and whose high contribution rates put our representatives in their pockets), that are concerned ONLY with profits, are the major competitors with the seemingly weak middle and lower class voters… that’s US. If we don’t act now, we deserve what we get.
In this year prior to major elections we can express dissatisfaction at town meetings where these representatives show up to appear people-oriented. Or we can picket capitol buildings. Or we can plan with each other the kinds of things that haven’t been tried before.
- Democrats Seek to Strip $21 Billion in Subsidies from Big Oil (treehugger.com)
- Gene Karpinski: End Taxpayer Handouts to Big Oil (huffingtonpost.com)
- Congress grills big oil on subsidies (rt.com)
- Sen. Claire McCaskill: Ending Taxpayer Subsidies for Big Oil (huffingtonpost.com)
- U..S. Senator Robert Menendez:No More Subsidies for Big Oil (gloucestercitynews.net)
- Gas Prices at $5/gallon : “Problem is we the consumers are at the mercy of both the elected thugs in congress and the corporate oil thugs.” (unaskedadvice.wordpress.com)
- ENERGY – Big Oil Subsidies (cozumelianblogger.wordpress.com)
- Getting Even With ExxonMobil (businessinsider.com)
- Big Oil gets its payday (thehill.com)
- Boehner refuses to consider Democratic proposal to end big oil subsidies (dailykos.com)
- Will Big Oil Get A Bigger Tax Bill? (curiouscapitalist.blogs.time.com)
- “Reid Questions $4 billion in subsidies for Big Oil” and related posts (desertbeacon.blogspot.com)
- Democrats keep up pressure on Big Oil welfare (dailykos.com)
Elly is off at the Hagerstown Community College graduation with the rest of the faculty, leaving me and the dogs behind. The weather is threatening… right now there is an ongoing drizzle, but it is threatening thunderstorms. Even so, after feeding and taking the dogs for their morning walk, I left for the second week of the Morgan’s Grove Market.
Because of threatening weather about half of last week’s vendors didn’t show up… attendance was lower as well, although about half the parking area was filled. In general, the weather was not terrible, so it was a shame that more folks didn’t show up.
The Entertainment, billed as Gregorio and Friends (there were only 2 of them, so I guess some friends were absent), arrived and started playing.
Al Thomas was doing a demonstration of old-fashioned, hand turned wood which he was happy to answer questions about…
After helping Ruth Robertas out at her Four Seasons Bookstore booth for a few minutes so she could go and get a donut (I sold seven lottery tickets for the community garden!), I took off to go and vote in the Governor primary (this was an unusual Saturday election day).
Then I came home to further develop my Vegan Key Lime Pie recipe.
Tonite we’re going to see 1776 at the Apollo Civic Theater in Martinsburg.
- Icebox Strawberry Pie (blogcritics.org)
- Pie so good, it’s a sin against God…. (agourmetcupboard.wordpress.com)
… for the opening of Morgan’s Grove Market. The sun was out, it wasn’t too warm , and people showed up to fill the parking lot.
Elly and I went for a little more than the first hour… bought some vegetables, talked to people and had a great time.
And everyone seemed so happy! This is going to be a regular Saturday morning thing until the late Fall…and we have to hand it to Peter Corum who organized the whole thing and really pulled it off.
Can’t wait until next week… it’s going to be fun.
We walked around the park, spoke to some of Elly’s colleagues from HCC and came back home to feed the dogs and have lunch.