Features

GM’s Cobblepot: The 1971-1977 Chevy Vega

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In the popular TV series, Gotham (it’s a prequel to the Batman story) there’s an episode called “Everyone Has His Cobblepot” – a reference to something embarrassing in one’s past. The Chevy Vega’s is GM’s Cobblepot.    Like most failures, it wasn’t intentional. But it was – in retrospect predictable. Chiefly because then-GM President Ed…

The Thorium Powered Car

thorium Caddy

Why is it that alternative technologies that clearly do not work –  which are so gimped by functional and economic problems as to be not-viable on the market absent huge subsidies and even then, it’s hard to give them away – continue to receive seemingly endless financial and political support … while technologies that actually might work better than…

Lock-Down Nation

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While waiting for a dentist appointment, I was listening to a news report about NewYork City being on “lockdown” because of snow. Only the official vehicles of the anointed were at liberty to be out and about. Ordinary citizens were subject to arrest merely for daring to attempt travel. It reminded me of the old Soviet…

What’s a “Clover”?

dancing Clover

I get lots of e-mails from new readers asking what a “Clover” is. I explain that it’s several things. In general terms, a Clover can be of the Left or Right persuasion. A Democrat or a Republican. Those are, however, superficialities (though many get hung up on them regardless). The fundamental thing is that he is…

Rules For Successful Speeding

low IQ thug cop

We all do it – and that includes the cops who spend their days giving us tickets for doing it. Of course, they enjoy legal impunity to speed as much as they like, as often as they like. “Speed” only “kills,” it seems, when one is not wearing a special costume. At any rate, since we…

For-Profit Policing

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You’ve heard of greasing the skids? A bill introduced in the Texas legislature would do just that – giving cops credit card readers, as an adjunct to their radar detectors. Instead of just, license, registration and proof of insurance, please – it’ll be: License, registration, proof of insurance… and Visa or Mastercard, please. And no,…

How Uncle Killed Pontiac

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The French philosopher-economist Frederic Bastiat wrote about the unseen repercussions of government interfering with the market’s natural progressions. In other words, what might have been. Perhaps the saddest four words in the language. One such might-have-been is the 1982 Turbo Trans-Am. You have probably never heard of it. Because, of course, it was never produced.…

When Should I Change My Car’s Oil?

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It’s a very common question – but it’s hard to get a straight answer. I’ll try to give you one. It depends. On your particular car. And how you drive it. First, let’s consider the car you’ve got. The older it is, the more often you’ll need to change the oil. Especially if it’s older than circa late…

The “Peak Oil” Con

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I’ve been reading about “peak oil” being imminent since the ’70s. Oil may indeed be a finite resource but the relevant question is: How much is left? It appears there’s more than previously reckoned. Perhaps a great deal more. Keep in mind (and assuming for the sake of discussion, benign motives) that the “peak oil”…