Why in good conscience, I can not vote for McCain or Clinton

It’s somewhat old news now, but I felt that I should pass this tid bit on to as many people as I can.  A couple of weeks ago McCain (Republican presidential nominee) and Clinton (Losing potential democratic nominee) proposed a bill that would enact a “gas holiday.”  A joyous event where I imagine Hummers from sea to shinning sea and the woods filled with ATVs.  It’s a hedonistic place where the American lifestyle can fester.  Unfortunately an army of no good, two timing, forked tongued economists decided they would crash the party.

Not to be stopped on their god given path to righteousness, the two politicians (namely Clinton) went on to debase economists.

Sigh, it really is a sad world we live in.  Rather than try to enact a good fix for a growing problem, our potential leaders try to put an infected bandaid on the wound.  And for what?  For nothing more than to move forward with their political agenda.

This is why in good conscience I could never vote for McCain or Clinton.  Actions speak louder than words and their actions show that they are not working in the best interest of the people.  They are 100% in it for themselves and if the Bush administration is any indication of that behavior, I say no to another 4 years of hole digging.

Possible fixes?

  1. I’ve not done any number crunching or any theory behind it, but here is a possible idea.  Provide government subsidies or rebates to people who turn in cars with gas mileage under 22mpg that purchase a car of 28mpg or better.  The government sets up a program to recycle these cars.  The rebate could be a tax incentive spread over years plus the value of materials cannibalized from the vehicle.  It just needs to be enough to provide incentive to the consumer without creating a huge government debt.  This would allow gas hogs to escape the resale cycle until they end up in a landfill or as a lawn decoration for blue collar comedy.
  2. Realize the negative externalities of poor economy vehicles to the consumer.  At the moment, the  “cool factor”, the “in” style, social climate are providing more (econ term) utility to the consumer than the balance of the prices.  Start to tax them so that the car is purchased on utilitarian merits only.
  3. Government funded advertisement to change the social climate towards fuel efficient cars.  Not really “cool” to have efficient cars.  Unfortunately it will become a necessity before it becomes cool thanks to current advertising climate.
  4. Increase the gas tax.  Actually a good idea considering more money will go to government for roads and etc.  As well as it will help to make up for all the negative externalities associated with driving.
  5. Increase budget for public transportation and start building a better rail system between cities and in cities.  Minneapolis has one light rail line and could certainly use more.
  6. Increase the power of the dollar. How? Stop spending money on warmongering thus increasing national debt.  Start making peace not war. (cliche slogan but true.)  It’s simply a matter of risk.  If you were to try and get a loan from a bank, do you think the bank would look favorably upon you if you were prone to starting fires in your neighbors houses and currently had trillions of dollars and still growing of unpaid debt?  It’s not rocket science, it’s high school economics.  Unfortunately the current climate in the white house is a proud example of no child left behind.  (If that confused you, NCLB is a garbage program.)

Ok, enough vent for now.  I’d be interested to hear your opinions on the matter and have some intellectual discourse.

  1. If only it were that simple. Unfortunately in the rush to blame users of inefficient vehicles for wanting them, everyone seems to leave the manufacturer of these vehicles off the hook.

    1. If you penalize user of low efficiency vehicles, you penalize everyone who owns a boat or a trailer. You threaten the recreational boat and RV industry. Given a choice I would never drive a poor efficiency vehicle, but it is hard to find a high efficiency vehicle that can pull our boat. The first gas shortage hit us in 1973. Since then poor efficiency vehicles should have been able to be improved by the manufacturers – wouldn’t you think?

    2. Public transportation – although probably a good idea, the real answer is to reduce the number of miles a person drives. A. Car pooling is easy and could be done by many, but until the impact on the wallet is big enough – people will fly solo. Decades of habit are hard to overcome without incentive. B. Buses and light rail – although conceptually good, look at cities with good mass transit and look at their rush hour traffic. Although mass transit must be helping – it certainly does not seem to be the answer. In New York City there are many a story where you can get to where you want to go on foot faster than on a bus.

    3. Stop war mongering – always a good idea.

    4. Alternative fuel – get away from internal combustion altogether is probably the best idea. We should have started on that 40 years ago – but the economic incentive was never there.

    5. Change our thinking. Do we really need to drive into the office every morning. Working from home 1 day a week would cut an individuals gas consumption by up 15-20%. Decentralize the work force. Create satellite office buildings where companies who can – can set up suburban offices close to pockets of their employees. Man companies could use a single building with a site manager handling computer resources. The unused office space downtown as a result of this decentralization could be converted into condo space for more people who can’t work in a sattellite building to move into. The influx of higher income (?) into these spaces could revitalize the deteriorating school situation in the inner city and minimize the Urban sprawl.

    I think it is encouraging that young people actually think about these things and have their own opinions. It’s your world to fix – sorry we left in such a mess…

  2. Thanks for the comment. I feel that for towing vehicles to tow recreational vehicles, Diesel engines provide a decent balance at present. Diesel engines are known to have better low end torque. They also provide the opportunity to use biodiesel. If you follow renewable resources, you will know that biodiesel is far more efficient and creates a much smaller footprint in preparation when compared to ethanol. It’s not the end all solution but it is a step in the right direction.

  3. Richard,

    You’ve come a long way. I’m proud of you.



Leave a Comment

NOTE - You can use these HTML tags and attributes:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>