It's just one insane policy after another these days. When I argued against the auto bailouts last December, I wrote:
When a group of automobile industry executives who are intimately acquainted with the particulars of their own industry are apparently not able to return a profit on their operations, it is downright absurd to think that a group of politicians (who are hardly exemplars of efficient spending or financial management themselves) can dictate operational policies that will return profits from these auto companies.
Today's announcement from President Barack Obama calling for stricter fuel and emissions standards is just more evidence to substantiate my concern:
President Barack Obama will announce new vehicle-emission rules tomorrow, setting the first-ever nationwide limit on greenhouse-gas pollution from autos, people familiar with the plan said.
The move would force automakers to meet a fuel-economy standard for 2016 models of slightly less than 35.5 miles a gallon, a target Congress has said wouldn’t have to be met until 2020.
Crippling the Auto Industry and Hurting Consumers
And just what would this do to the price of automobiles? It will cost consumers an extra $1,300 per vehicle by 2016. To be clear, Congress' standards are already going to cost consumers an extra $700 per vehicle regardless of what the Obama Administration does, and Obama's new, stricter policy to be announced today will add $600 on top of that.
At a time when the automobile industry is struggling to stay alive, and after the two most recent White House administrations and members of both parties in Congress claim that it is simply "too big to fail" -that the costs to our country would be too catastrophic and that it must be kept alive even if that means illegally and unconstitutionally extending to it billions of dollars of taxpayers' money- it is utter madness to hurt automobile sales by slapping $1,300 on top of each new vehicle's price. This is especially true when consumers are already so strapped for cash.
Schwarzenegger & Granholm
This part is just too funny for words:
Obama will announce the moves Tuesday at a huge White House ceremony designed to underscore cooperation among automakers, environmentalists and the two governors whose states have most closely watched the fate of U.S. auto-making -- Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger of California and Democrat Jennifer Granholm of Michigan.
So the two cheerleaders we have in attendance at the ceremony to endorse this policy are the governors of the two states whose economies have been the most wrecked by their governments' over-regulation, confiscatory taxation, and mismanagement? Could they make it any more obvious to the rest of us that this policy will crash and burn? This is not about global warming, it's not about cleaning up the environment, and it's not about energy independence. This is about more power, prestige, and money for the Washington establishment.