Fixing The Cop Problem

Shaking the Cup - Updated!

Why The Young Hate Cars

Easy Fixes First

Fixing The Cop Problem

You’ve no doubt heard the term, “checks and balances.” It’s usually mentioned in the context of government – of the…

Shaking the Cup - Updated!

Some of you have been having issues/noticing a little weirdness with the log-ins. I have no idea what’s wrong, but…

Why The Young Hate Cars

Well, maybe hate is too strong. But they sure seem not to like them very much. As evidenced by the…

Easy Fixes First

The other day, I decided to go for a ride on one of my motorcycles – my old, reliable, never-let-me-down…

New Car Reviews

2015 Lincoln Navigator

'15 Nav lead

How the mighty have fallen. Lincoln’s Navigator pretty much invented the bling-bling SUV as a cultural archetype and automotive industry phenom that changed everything almost overnight. Including Cadillac’s position as the country’s number one (in terms of total sales) luxury vehicle line. On the strength of Navigator sales alone, Lincoln – for a few salad years, back in the ’90s – eclipsed Cadillac. Until Cadillac built a blingier – and…

2015 Dodge Dart

'15 Dart silver

Every now and then, you’ll see a Dodge Dart. The original (’70s-era) Dart, I mean. They were as durable as the pyramids. Well, the famous Slant Six” engine was. The bodies tended to rust away long before that inline six gave up the ghost. That’s the main reason you don’t see many original Darts anymore. But back in the day, people loved ’em – and Dodge sold millions of them. This…

2015 Subaru Forester

'15 Forester road 3

You can learn some important stuff about cars by taking note of who buys what – and how the cars are used. And whether they stand up to the uses to which they’re put. Texans, for instance, know trucks. Forget the TV commercials and advertising flapdoodle. Check out which makes/models of pick-up are popular in Texas – especially rural Texas – and you’ll have a good idea about which truck…

2015 VW Golf R

'15 Golf R lead

Subaru’s WRX STI is the fastest n’ most furious turbo all-wheel-drive thing going… right? Wrong. At least, not anymore. The new king is VW’s Golf R – the “R” for returned after a two-year hibernation. Well, not really. The R is just VW-speak for really, really, really quick. Those two years in the garage? Time well spent. How’s zero to 60 in the high fours grab you? This leaves the…

2015 VW Passat TDI

'15 Passat lead

When you’re the only game in town, you’ve pretty much got the market cornered. But it helps when what you’re selling is also what people want. People want Passats. It’s a very popular car, in part because it’s the only German car in its class – and in this price range. The rest are (cue the italics and the umlaut) uber expensive due to their prestige branding. Well, and the…

2015 Nissan Altima

'15 Altima last

I’ve written before about the fact that federal fuel-economy mandates are subtly but significantly eroding away the choices available to consumers – and increasing the cost of the diminishing choices that remain. The ’15 Altima being a case in point. At first glance, it’s what they call in the car biz a carryover – the same basic car as it was last year. With one big (and expensive) exception. If…

Politics

Fixing The Cop Problem

cops lead

You’ve no doubt heard the term, “checks and balances.” It’s usually mentioned in the context of government – of the American form of government (well, its theoretical form) in particular. The idea that the legislative branch acts as a check on the powers of the executive, while the judicial balances the legislative – and so on. It’s a sound concept that maybe ought to be applied to police work. Something’s got to be done. On this point, almost everyone’s agreed. Because it’s obvious that cops are increasingly out of control. Literally. But not…

Why The Young Hate Cars

teen driver lead

Well, maybe hate is too strong. But they sure seem not to like them very much. As evidenced by the fact that a record-high percentage haven’t even got a driver’s license – and have no intention (according to what they tell researchers) of ever getting one. How high? Pushing 30 percent (and upticking each year) of present-day 19-year-olds. As contrasted with almost no 19-year-olds back in the ’90s and before. They are opting out. Of the hassle. Cars – and driving – are no longer a ticket to ride, for teenagers or otherwise. But…

It’s Not The Speeding… It’s The Double Standard

doube standard pic

Here’s a nice little video making the rounds online: Observe the Hero (as we’re constantly told they are) driving at least 85 MPH – the car pacing him is going that fast and can’t catch up. In many states, anything over 80 MPH – anywhere – is statutory “reckless” driving. The offender is subject to immediate arrest (at the cop’s discretion), his vehicle to impoundment. If charged, he faces a mandatory court appearance, the probable loss of his driving “privileges” – and the certainty (upon conviction) of doubled or tripled insurance premiums for the next…

“Your” Car? Not So Much…

DMCA lead

The government wants to control your car – how it’s made, what it comes equipped with and (of course) how you’re allowed to drive it. Now comes the other half of the pincers: The car companies want to prevent you from working on the thing. Modifications – performance enhancements – and even routine maintenance are to become illegal via the application (and enforcement) of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) to cars.    They are claiming propriety rights to the software embedded in the computer – technically, the Electronic Control Unit or ECU – that…

Cloverism Leads to a Wreck

Camaro 3

There’s a video circulating online that shows events leading up to a pretty awful wreck involving a Camaro, a pick-up truck and a tractor-trailer big rig. Most of the jeers are directed at the Camaro’s driver, who made the final Bad Move (an attempted pass on the left shoulder) that led to the actual wreck. But as inexcusable (and unskilled) as his driving was, what set the whole chain of events in motions was – you guessed it – a Clover. The guy in the pickup truck. He squats in the left lane…