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Cash for Clunking Doctors

It has come to my attention that our numerous trolls, illiterates, and Palin-bangers are upset about Dane’s trashing of the nation’s most prominently vapid GILF*. Their incohate bleating, weeping, and gnashing of teeth have inspired me to write a post I was going to write anyway, only on the clock instead of this afternoon. Way to go, chums.

Yesterday the LA Times ran a pretty good piece on Washington’s latest completely wasteful boondoggle: Cash for Clunkers. Unless you’ve been living under a rock or a bridge like the commenters a post down, you’re undoubtedly aware that the government is offering a $4,500 rebate on “clunkers” toward the purchase of a new car. Aside from effectively establishing a price floor on the used market and maybe pricing a bunch of people out, the program does not apply to any car manufactured before 1984. Why? Good old regulatory capture and political economy.

The restrictions were pushed by lobbyists for the Specialty Equipment Market Assn., a Diamond Bar group that represents companies that sell parts and services to classic and antique car collectors. The group, as well as classic car enthusiasts, have opposed cash for clunkers because they don’t want older vehicles to be destroyed.

When the proposals for a clunker buyback program surfaced early this year, the specialty equipment association opposed the entire concept because such a program could shrink the size of the market for aftermarket parts. The association eventually got lawmakers to adopt the age limit.

“We are very pleased that Congress was able to include that in the program,” said Stuart Gosswein, director of regulatory affairs at the association.

The association represents more than 7,000 companies that make all manner of auto-related products, including reproduction Model T tires and AMC Gremlin upholstery. The powerful interest group has won legislative battles nationwide to protect owners of classic cars and hot rods from laws covering vehicle noise, emissions tests and much else.

Now, you might be asking exactly what that has to do with the current healthcare shouting match (debate would be far too generous a term), but here’s the rub: this is how the political process operates. Some politican proposes something, and then the special interest lobbies work very hard to make sure their interests are protected. It’s a problem of concentrated benefit and distributed costs. So, what will happen with the healthcare reform is not some platonic ideal of government-backed/socialist care but a conglomeration of rules and regulations that prop-up the existing insurance lobby at the expense of the taxpayer. To be clear, even the platonically ideal single-payer solution would be an awful idea for reasons that Megan McArdle over at The Atlantic has catalogued pretty well; but what we are likely to get is probably much worse than that. More expensive than the status quo, less effective, and in the long-run detrimental to innovation and improvement.

Still, all of that being the case does not make Sarah Palin any smarter.

* To be clear anyone who thinks Sarah Palin belongs anywhere other than treasurer of the local Junior League is so deluded as to be worthless as a conversationalist and, perhaps, a human being. I am looking at YOU, John McCain.

  1. Betz says:

    aww … I like a little comic relief …

  2. Vincent says:

    As far as I can tell, there is actually no “University of Ohio.”

    On the other hand, Ohio University’s mascot is the Bobcat, which it shares with the junior high school in my hometown. Ohio Northern University has the polar bear (?), and Ohio State is the “Buckeye”, which is a tree.

    In any case, CJ, our erstwhile friend got the banhammer. You can read his bizarre ramblings in the moderation queue, if you want. It’s mostly just calling us losers and asking for my phone number after some clumsy attempts at sexual innuendo.

    It’s sub-Frisch stuff, really.

  3. CJ Ciaramella says:

    University of Ohio? Sorry, I’m not interested in majoring in incest or snow-shoveling.

    What the fuck is the University of Ohio’s mascot anyways? A dead elk lying frozen in a ditch?

    Comprehensive Health care reform is a no brained,

    I can’t think of anything to say that would match the glory of this statement.

  4. Chris says:


    Please for the love of God, use this before you post. Also, you should probably read this before you post as well.

    Now to find something for the headache your post caused. Alcohol, perhaps.

  5. Demi Sodds says:

    Thunderlove, what is that? You mean like “made of thunder, felling of love?” I got like 3 of my friends that call themselves that and they suck. You Oregon folk are pretty dumb antcha? Calling yourself stupid names like Uplink, Thunderlove and the worst, Vincent. Vincent? I hate that name. It’s for hairstylists and foreign diplomats.

    Cleveland’s beautiful this time of year, have fun in rainy Eugene , Boregon goofballs. I’ll be back to show you hw dumb you clownes are!

    ps Comprehensive Health care reform is a no brained, but you bean brains probably aren’t smart enough to see that.

  6. Thunderlove says:

    St. helens was in washington demi, i guess u of ohio does not kick more ass

  7. Demi Sodds says:

    Hey now, honest mistake. It would make sense for a bunch of creeps to be hanging out in Oregon, middle of nowhere, plucking at your banjos and talking about GILF. Well hot damn, your in a Western cowboy aintcha. Only good thing ever to come outta Oregon was St Helens and that thing blew. Sorry didn’t realize that uoregon is a joke and the real U of O(hio) kicks way more ass. Nice comments treehuggers.

  8. JMB says:

    You would think that given how “OREGON” appears 4 times on this screen (including at the very top, in the largest font), Demi Sodds would be able to figure out just what U of O is being referred to. He is correct, however, in point out that “your” making him look stupid. Of course, he probably doesn’t understand why.

  9. Vincent says:

    Your making us all look stupid!


  10. Timothy says:

    Y’all must all be ICP fans.

  11. Demi Sodds says:

    Never been to this page before, is this really u of o? University of Ohio? Because I hope it’s not as an Ohio alum I would not want my chronies to think HR 3000 is in the constitution. What is ya vincireno? A flamming commy?

    Please leave university of Ohio now! Your making us all look stupid!

  12. Vincent says:

    HR 3200 is in the Constitution. Look it up.

  13. Vincent says:


    Sounds good, man. The b-side can be “Rape Kit Controversy.”

  14. Sapwolf says:

    Hey, somebody said we needed some wailing and gnashing.

    Well, I’m here.


    Watching Sarah punch the snot out of Obama and Rahm with just a Facebook page is a riot.

    Of course, once you actually READ the bill HR 3200, it is riddled with a 100 big government nightmares.

  15. EdFab says:

    “Still, all of that being the case does not make Sarah Palin any smarter.”

    Nor does it make her dumber, because Palin’s inteligence is not defined by what is or is not inside of the healthcare reform bill. If you don’t understand that, why should anything you write be taken seriously? Or to put it another way, you can put lipstick-like adjectives on a string of vapid sentences, but all’s you got is still just a string of vapid sentences.

  16. CJ Ciaramella says:

    Vincent, do you want to start a metal band called “Death Panel” when I get back? Our first single can be called “Bring us Trig, son of Palin.”

  17. Vincent says:

    Anyone supporting Palin in 2012 will be disappointed when documents obtained by the nascent “Spirther” movement emerge proving she was actually born in Kenya.

  18. nike urbanism duk says:

    Cash for Clunkers sounds like a good name for one of those Bus Project fundraisers to get people like Wyden and yard gnomes like Defazio elected again.

  19. Betz says:

    You know … you tempt the wrath of the followers of ‘Her Sarah-ness’ … expect wailing and the gnashing of teeth in 3 … 2… 1 …

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