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Was the Cash for Clunkers program a good idea or a bad idea?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on August 25, 2009

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Photo of Dan Murray

“I think it was a bad idea because as a taxpayer, I didn’t appreciate my tax dollars being used for someone else to buy a car.”

Photo of John Federico

“It was a good idea … it helped keep jobs at the local automobile manufacturer (GM’s Fairfax plant) and brought in new jobs to the state of Kansas. ”

Photo of Patti Triplett

“I think it was good for some people … if it helps you get a new vehicle, cool.”

Photo of Caren Lowe

“I think it was beneficial for a lot of people.”

Comments

jafs 4 years, 7 months ago

Well, if the clunkers had to get less than 18mpg to qualify, and you could get $3500 for increasing less than 3mpg, a car getting 19-20mpg could qualify.

My 1991 Ford Escort gets 20mpg - do you really think we can't do better than that almost 20 years later?

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Agnostick 4 years, 7 months ago

jafs,

I'm in agreement with 90% of your post. My only reservation is the higher requirement of increased mpg. I think they probably based their requirements on what cars were out there right now, with enough inventory to satisfy potential demand. Like I said in another thread, we've started the car shopping process... and this past weekend, saw plenty of dealer lots that had a lot of empty spaces where new vehicles usually sit.

As expected, Wikipedia has a good summary of the program:

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jafs 4 years, 7 months ago

Agnostick,

I imagine the money comes from our insurance premiums.

Salvage yards provide a lot of usable parts from cars that are towed there.

Again, I think the program would have been much better had it mandated the use of any usable parts/material in the original cars, allowed for the purchase of more efficient used cars as well as new, and required even more in the way of increased mpg.

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Agnostick 4 years, 7 months ago

Second verse, same as the first...

http://www2.ljworld.com/weblogs/friday-the-13th-stay-home-go-out-or-hide-from-the-/2009/aug/23/cash-for-clunkers/#c971202

This whole discussion has been hilarious, for a couple of reasons.

First off, everyone is a Monday morning armchair quarterback on this program. Lots and lots of criticism, with only one or two constructive suggestions on how it could be improved, or why it was a bad idea to begin with. I'll stick by the assertion I previously posted, from a sales rep. at a local car dealership, who's actually been on the front lines of all this: C4C probably helped a lot of people get out from under large, inefficient vehicles with high payments and low residual values. In turn, they were able to purchase smaller, more efficient vehicles that help them get to work and school (kinda hard to keep a job if you can't get there).

Equally as hilarious are all the users who seem sure that there are thousands of perfectly-good vehicles being thrown away; apparently, the only criteria they have for a "good car" is intact windows and windshields. If that's the case, I'd like to show you folks some great cars from the New Orleans area. All glass is intact--just a very slight amount of, shall we say, "water damage." ;)

Marion (inadvertently) makes a good point, talking about the time, labor, expense etc. to remove an engine. Insurance companies "total out" dozens, if not hundreds of cars a week. Sure, the vehicle might still be usable, or only need some work--but the parts/labor required to fix the vehicle is more than the current value, so the vehicle is totaled out, towed away to the salvage yard, and the owner is given a check for the amount of the market value.

And where do you think the money for all those checks comes from?

I can't 100% deny that there might be some good "clunkers" out on those lots--but it's foolish to speculate that a car is good, based solely on outward appearance.

Agnostick agnostick@excite.com

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jafs 4 years, 7 months ago

And, JR, how much energy is it taking to dispose of the old cars?

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JackRipper 4 years, 7 months ago

How much energy was used to make the vehicles being destroyed and the new ones being traded for in this deal? Do we ever look at the big picture? I just hope to God we never hear people telling us they have the right to drive whatever they want if they can afford it and the car companies spending millions to lobby for maintaining the fallacy that the suv was a truck and not a family vehicle so those who didn't play that game now help to bail out the irresponsible individuals and companies.

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Marion Lynn 4 years, 7 months ago

The engines of the so-called "clunkers" must be destroyed but removal generally costs more that the engines are worth, so most of the so-called "clunkers" will be scrapped intact.

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JackRipper 4 years, 7 months ago

An enormous waste of resources that should have been going into the 21st century future projects that peak oil will demand. I really hoped for change and thought we would see it but either Obama recognizes the extreme seriousness of the economy and was willing to pass on other important issues or he is just as much a puppet of corporate Americans as all the rest.

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Ricky_Vaughn 4 years, 7 months ago

Gee, if everyone's so upset about the Clunkers program, why don't we just let W run this country again for another 8 years........shudder

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jafs 4 years, 7 months ago

logic,

If it's true that they'll use any usable parts/etc. I'm glad.

My experience with dealers' service departments is that they're overpriced and no more reliable than independent mechanics - but I agree there are a lot of bad mechanics.

We have older cars and probably spend a few hundred dollars a year on maintenance/repair instead of a few hundred a month for a new car loan. Also, older (non-computerized cars) are often cheaper and easier to work on. And, new cars will cost more to insure/register/etc.

The debt issue is a personal responsibility issue, but it's worth considering unintended consequences with programs like these.

I am just often disappointed with government attempts that have a good idea at the core but fail to implement it well.

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Marion Lynn 4 years, 7 months ago

Creative accounting and fraud issues in this program:

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2009/08/05/lurita-doan-cash/

"Add up all the various government costs of administrating the program and it will likely come to several hundred million dollars, which makes the true taxpayer cost of each clunker approximately $6,000.

In addition to the high costs comes tremendous execution risk in the Clunker program and the likelihood of fraud. Perhaps, one of the most disturbing parts of the Clunker program is that the recipient of the $4,500 doesn't need to provide a Social Security number. So, it is possible for illegal immigrants, as well as resourceful folks from Canada and Mexico, to cross our borders, trade in their clunkers, and get American taxpayer dollars. But don't expect anyone in Congress to admit that taxpayers are paying around $6,000 to provide a $4,500 rebate for a foreigner or illegal immigrant to buy a new car."

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BuenaVista 4 years, 7 months ago

If you have mechanical skills a pre computerized car will much easier to work on, just get a cheap part and do the work yourself

For most folks a new car is going to be a better investment.

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bad_dog 4 years, 7 months ago

"Maintenance on our 13 year old town car is much cheaper than a new one."

That really doesn't make much sense imastinker, unless you never change the oil/air filters, headlights/wipers, or balance/rotate/align/replace the tires on your car. Maintenance schedules are often more user friendly and inexpensive now than they previously were. My late-model Toyota hasn't cost me a cent for maintenance aside from oil changes/tire rotations-ordinary maintenance you experience on any car. If any component on your car fails whether as a result of maintenance or wear/tear you will be responsible for paying the entire cost to repair/replace it. That isn't the case with a new car under warranty-assuming you haven't abused the car.

As for some of the comments regarding destroying otherwise good cars and their parts and the alleged environmental impact, the engine is the only component destroyed by the program. Auto salvagers are given 30 days to strip any usable parts after the car is turned over to them by a dealer. If an auto salvager doesn't want a given clunker part at this point in time, chances are good the market isn't going to improve for such parts. In addition, merely because a part isn't recycled into the used car part market doesn't mean it's headed to the landfill. The steel, iron, glass and plastics are often collected, recycled and remanufactured into other new products.

With respect to the affordability issue, the most popular cars sold under the program were Toyota Corollas, Honda Civics and Ford Focuses. If you can't afford the payment on one of these models, you probably didn't qualify for the factory only financing. If for example, you take a $15,000 Corolla less the $4,500 incentive, you are left with $10,500 to finance assuming you make no down payment. Toyota offers 0% for 4 years on the Corolla-about $219/month. That's $7.30/day for a new car. If that's too much for your budget, you can lease one for $99/month, or $3.30/day. That sounds pretty affordable for most folks. Throw in the mpg savings, worry free driving for 60k and it looks economically viable for most budgets to me. If not, I guess you have to look at your priorities and determine whether you can make any adjustments or just do without it.

Finally, I really don't think the CEOs of car manufacturers are getting rich off this program. Many manufacturers obtain significant amounts of their corporate profits from associated financing entities. Given many of these financing entities are providing financing for these sales at 0%, exactly how are they getting rich? If anything, they are likely operating at a loss for these loans given they have to pay employees to issue and process all the paperwork and then service the loans over their lives. In addition, they are taking all the risk of financing at little if any reward, at least aside from clearing out inventory. That leaves only the profit margin obtained by the car sold on a per sale basis.

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logicsound09 4 years, 7 months ago

Sunshine,

This is not corporate welfare. It benefits the entire auto industry supply chain. The benefit is being handed out at the consumer level.

I'm no fan of corporate welfare, but this is not it.

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logicsound09 4 years, 7 months ago

Your post is all over the place, imastinker.

Personal experience aside, on average, a newer car will require less maintenence and upkeep than an older one. It is foolish to suggest otherwise. Furthermore, I wouldn't dare suggest that people who don't want new cars buy new cars just because this program exists. As far as I know, it is not mandatory.

Maintaining older cars, depending on their condition is not necessarily cheaper than making payments on a new car. It's all about planning. I don't know how you can categorically state what a person can or can't do without accounting for the details of the situation.

Regarding your final comment about paying for the neighbors to keep up--it is off topic. The conversation is about a government program that uses already-collected tax dollars to achieve a certain end. Simplifying it down to the "I'm subsidizing my neighbor" argument is intellectually lazy.

As I already stated, taxes go to a myriad of different programs, so complaining about having to pay for a program you don't agree with is an invalid argument, as every government program is likely to have a group that doesn't agree with paying for it. Unless you are fundamentally opposed to all forms of tax-funded programs, then a valid criticism must address the specific details of the program in question.

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Stuart Evans 4 years, 7 months ago

Sunshine, if you're low income, are you even paying taxes? sure they take some out of your check every week, but don't you probably get back more at the end of the year than you put in?

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Stuart Evans 4 years, 7 months ago

musbhiorlo (Anonymous) says… i didn't like the program because it was only for idiots who had purchased large gas guzzlers, what about the good decent Americans who would never buy a gas hog? what did they get for free?


psst.. your smug is showing. some people didn't buy large gas guzzlers. they bought what was new at the time, or they bought what they could afford, or they bought what they needed. I'm so sorry that we can't all cram our little whiny bodies into a prius and be as eco-friendly as yourself.
and what do you get for free.. you get to keep being a pompous ass and continue to consider yourself one of the few good, decent, Americans.

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demonfury 4 years, 7 months ago

I'm not sure who " logic" is, but logic is the furthest thing from his / her mind. Sounds like the typical Obama / Democrap cheerleader to me. This program is nothing more than a temporary band aid for the auto industry. Watch what happens next. Sales will plummet, jobs will be lost, and they will be asking Obama for more bailout money. Obama is an idiot for listening to who ever made up this plan. Obama isn't smart enough to have created it. All he does is throw other people's money at the problems. Until you address the root of the problem, you can not solve it with band aids. The union is the problem, and it's costs to the industry. Fix that, fix the whole problem, and not just with the auto industry, with all union industries. Same thing applies to health care, fix costs, and fix the problem. As unqualified and unprepared as Obama is to be president, I'm surprised that he isn't smart enought to put better decision makers around him to make him look better, and possibly increase his sinking approval ratings. If they continue to drop into the next calendar year, the Dem's will surely face stiff battles in congressional re-elections come next November. They won't be able to ride the great messiah's ratings, because they will suck, which, so far, is a true representation of his presidency. Cash for clunkers will lose bigger than they ever thought they would win. You'll see............

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Kat Christian 4 years, 7 months ago

I think its crappy when I'm low income yet can't afford to buy a new car yet my tax dollars go to pay for someone who probably can buy a new car but is getting a cut rate deal. Plus they get low interest or no interest payment. Someone is getting rich off of this - the CEOs of the car companies. Its corporate welfare and I think its crap. That money could have been spent elsewhere instead of giving it away like that. I try not to think about it because it only p!! me off.

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musbhiorlo 4 years, 7 months ago

i didn't like the program because it was only for idiots who had purchased large gas guzzlers, what about the good decent Americans who would never buy a gas hog? what did they get for free?

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imastinker 4 years, 7 months ago

Logic,

I own several cars. All are large american made v8's (clunkers or guzzlers) and a newer pickup truck. I consider the purchase of the pickup truck to be the worst investment I have ever made. I can afford another new car, but will not buy one. Maintenance on our 13 year old town car is much cheaper than a new one. Someone that can barely afford to maintain an older car has absolutely no business getting a new one.

So I should help pay for the neighbors to keep up with the Jones's? Or are you advocating that my children pay for it since Obama would rather pass the burden of his programs to future generations?

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Donnuts 4 years, 7 months ago

I don't agree with Dan or anyone else that does. There certainly are many other tax funded programs that I would not want funded and I feel this one is as good as any of them. As a matter of fact being a taxpayer, I would like a new computer and the salvage effort worldwide would be helped by this. If you think of it in terms of longevity and not an temporary patch to a problem which solution we don't know then you would understand that policies like these would help people along that also pay taxes that need the relief. I mean after all we all pay for packages and incentives to bail out companies that we depend on, why not make it an easier thing to find and use their products for people that are poor. We also pay for the streets with our tax based I don't see why there should not be programs to help people become upwardly mobile and informed and employable, for our populous needs these things and accessibility is a major issue with some. I understand that when you want a new iphone you go in to trade the older model and get the new 3Gs, so why not give the used car industry the same boost, why not also apply this concept to other things. I have never had a new computer in my whole life. This computer works fine but as a laptop it's hinge is broken and has to permanently sit on a chair until it's system collapses.

I suppose you are entitled to your opinion but people that refurbish cars and dealers themselves will benefit greatly, as will places like "Pick a Part" in places like Oregon and all over which are not legal in Kansas as of yet either. It could basically be seen as an extension of a recycling program or effort.

Your choice. I think it is a great idea that if is not completely workable should be looked at; in my opinion there is no reason to say NO indefinitely.

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logicsound09 4 years, 7 months ago

jafs,

The way I understand it, only certain parts of the car are required to be scrapped, not the whole vehicle.

As far as I'm concered, there are too many independent mechanic shops as is, and far too many of them are horrible in terms of service and effectiveness. They survive because more often than not, it's easier for low-income people to hand over a few hundred dollars right now to get their POS running than to make the smart investment and get a newer, more efficient car. I work with a woman, who, with some proper planning, could have bought a new car with the amount of money she has sunk into repairing the old one.

Most manufacturers will allow outside mechanics to work on cars without voiding the warranty, although there are certain restrictions, like certification. If a mechanic is good, the work should be more or less available, as the total number of cars is not decreasing. And as one person already pointed out, the number of cars for this program compared to the overall number of U.S. cars on the road is very small.

I don't buy the debt issue, because that is an individual responsibility problem, not a problem with the program. If a person can't afford the loan required to buy the car, then they shouldn't be buying it and the dealer shouldn't be financing it. The beauty of this program is that it makes more people potentially capable of taking on the loan, because it will be up to $4500 less debt than if the program didn't exist.

I agree with you on the specific mpg numbers. The money could have been much more effective at incentivizing real change if the required increase in mileage was more substantial. If you are going to give people ~$5000 then make them concede something in return. If you are going to assist the auto industry by stimulating demand, send a real message about the types of cars that are the most beneficial to everyone.

I also agree that used cars should have been eligible (if they acheived certain mileage standards), albeit for a reduced incentive.

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BABBOY 4 years, 7 months ago

It was great idea.

But, these "do not spend my tax money" jerks do get old. I could agre with them but usually they are just pissed to see their money go to help someone else. They do not have huge problem with their tax dollars being spent on a occupation in Iraq or something of that nature.

jafs, we disagree, but I like the fact that you present your disagreement in rational way verses the simpleton way we usually see on this site. You make good points.

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jafs 4 years, 7 months ago

I usually agree with a lot of your posts, logic, but I have serious concerns about this program.

  1. By completely scrapping older cars, we're destroying many possibly usable parts/metal/etc. - that's not environmentally friendly.

  2. By encouraging people to buy new cars, we're helping dealers, but hurting other mechanics (since dealers usually have warranties which are voided if anyone else works on the car for the warranty period).

  3. If people are going into debt for the new cars, that may become a problem down the road.

  4. The actual increases in mpg are too low - you could have gotten $3500 for a car that simply got 2-3 mpg more.

It seems to me that the program should have saved any usable materials from the older cars, allowed folks to buy used as well as new cars, and required a larger increase in mpg to qualify.

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prospector 4 years, 7 months ago

It will only keep the 'cheap suit' market from tanking.

So what is different when Chrysler advertised $4500 trade-in incentives today? You and I don't pay for it. That is the way it should be.

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Stuart Evans 4 years, 7 months ago

it's recently struck me that this country voted in a Community Organizer for president. sure he can rally nearly any group of people into a frenzy. But what did he really organize? Were his organizations successful, or just a large group of people chanting inane slogans? isn't he really just a sheep herder? and are the sheep being led to the meadow, or are they being led off a cliff?

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Clint Gentry 4 years, 7 months ago

BorderRat, you don't know what you are talking about, the money isn't going "to the public", it's going to the dealerships that sold the cars. It "went" to the public when the dealers gave them 4500 off the purchase. You are showing that you have no comprehension of what is actually going on...your opinion is null...

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logicsound09 4 years, 7 months ago

The "not with my tax dollars" cries are just plain annoying. There is not a single person in this country who approves of every single thing to which their tax dollars go.

The practice of whining about individual programs is just pathetic. More often than not, they are merely a way to express displeasure with a certain political figure, and the actual value or lack thereof of the individual program is irrelevant. I can't help but wonder how the responses to this program might be switched if it were someone else's brainchild.

This program may not have been perfect, but it was a thoughtful approach to addressing several problems at once:

1) Helps the U.S. auto industry (which we claim is important to the U.S.' overall economic health) without just handing them chunks of cash by stimulating demand.

2) Changes the average emissions profile for vehicles on the road in a positive direction and simultaneously incentivizes auto manufacturers to build more fuel-efficient cars. Even if it is small by comparison.

3) Provides jobs as manufacturers ramp up production to meet the increased demand.

4) One person mentioned that all the program is doing is "shift[ing] the demand curve forward on transactions that would have probably taken place anyway." Maybe, maybe not. There is no way to know the answer to that yet. But even if true, this program helped dealers get rid of excess inventory and allows them the opportunity to run efficiently moving forward in a new business model.

This program is a great example of how a government program can be used to incentivize consumers and businesses in the existing capitalist system. The program alone isn't going to upgrade the entire fleet of cars on the road in the U.S., but it gives consumers and manufacturers incentives to start shifting their thinking about transportation towards a more responsible, efficient philosophy. At the end of the day, most of the hard work is up to the companies and indivduals, but the government's role is an important one.

Honestly, I think this is a great example of how the government can intervene without simply assuming control of the elements of the free market. Cash for clunkers did what it was designed to do--at this point it's just a matter of to what degree.

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BorderRat 4 years, 7 months ago

It may have already been stated, but I didn't see it. How much of the money for this program was used for "administrative fees, etc" and how much actually made it to the public?

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ksdivakat 4 years, 7 months ago

I want a TV stimulus!! I want a huge HD, TV with all the bells and whistles!! I NEED it to stimulate panasonic, JVC, and mitsubishi, and I also think that a huge flat screen HD TV with Blue Ray would be the bomb!

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Clint Gentry 4 years, 7 months ago

Yep, no actual arguments against "cash for clunkers", just partisan hackery, disguised as debate. It actually worked pretty well, that's why they are going to re-up the program once they get back to work. "My taxes"? Heh, by definition they are our taxes...get over yourself.

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BuenaVista 4 years, 7 months ago

I can’t wait for toaster stimulus.

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BigPrune 4 years, 7 months ago

Traded in my clunker and got me a new Kia!

Now I look for a refridgerator cause Obama gonna give me some money so I can get me a new Samsung fridge I got my eye on.

Thanks Obama!

I am so happy to help out the American worker!

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Roads_Collar 4 years, 7 months ago

Bad, bad, bad idea!

1) It's not the government's money that is going to provide new car buyers with the bonus - it is my money, and yours. Why should I have to fork over my already too high tax money to buy someone else a new car?

2) OK, great, we have "stimulated" a whole bunch of folks to go out and buy new cars. OK, great, some of the car manufacturers have seen a nice increase in productivity. Now what? Now that we got most of those folks who were probably going to buy a car in the near future anyway, into new cars, does anyone wonder what will happen to new car sales next? With the "easy market" now in "cash for clunker" new cars, won't there be a terrible dry spell now for both dealerships and manufacturers?

3) My brother-in-law is a salesman for a large dealership out east. Because of the horrific delays and red tape involved in refunding the dealership, his (as well as all the other salesmen there) commissions have been cut to nearly nothing. And probably will not be compensated in the future, because the dealership (along with thousands of other dealerships) has had to put out their cash/credit/resources so that the customers could buy their cash-for-clunkers new cars. Glad he could take it in the shorts for Obama

IMHO, what a debacle. And we want Obama to run our healthcare? Hoooboy!

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RoeDapple 4 years, 7 months ago

autie (Anonymous) says… "I suppose it was OK if it saved a bunch of jobs. But again I wind up being the dumbass middle class guy that goes to work everyday, pays through the nose for health insurance etcc "

bd (Anonymous) says… "So who wins? The middle class clunker owners and the salvage companys? Definetly not the lowers class !"

Sorry autie and bd, this is just a quirk of mine. We may be middle income, but "class" has nothing to do with this. I know, and I'm sure you all do too, there are a lot of lower income people and families that are considerably "higher class" than someone like, oh let's say, Bernie Madoff....

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cfdxprt 4 years, 7 months ago

All it did was shift the demand curve forward on transactions that would have probably taken place anyway. This means that we should expect auto sales to fall through the floor now, since anyone looking to purchase used the program. I suppose we can't expect gov't to understand economics though. They'll just try to pass clunkers II to stimulate demand.

Environmentally, exchanging 750k cars with a little better gas mileage in a nation of 200m cars is less than a drop in the bucket.

But at least they did something...

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BuenaVista 4 years, 7 months ago

National sports media = idiots. They probably think Notre Dame will have a good year.

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autie 4 years, 7 months ago

Speaking of cash for clunkers, did you guys see the piece on sportscenter this morning about big 12 football? Not one single solitary mention of KU or Todd Reesing. Clunk Herbstreet picks Texas to win the big 12 in the final game against the corned huskers. whack man.

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slappedyomomma 4 years, 7 months ago

Little Jon and tha Eastside Boyz are just waiting for the federal program "Cash for Crunkers" to come out. it provides assistance for the purchase of all that delicious crunk juice...

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Matt Warman 4 years, 7 months ago

I agree with Dan, it was a bad idea. The Gov't should stay out of the free market economy. Now there are some old clunker airplanes I see on the approach path to the airport over my house. If they want to set up a program for those...

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BuenaVista 4 years, 7 months ago

But if people fall for the slight-of-hand/magic trick they get deserve what they get. Unfortunately I am linked financially to the hoards of morons that surround me.

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BuenaVista 4 years, 7 months ago

I think that is the overlooked special interest at play. These stimulus programs inflate prices and encourage more consumer debt. The banking industry is all over these programs.

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The_Original_Bob 4 years, 7 months ago

"I'm waiting with bated breath for “Cash for Refrigerators” to start. "

That'd be awesome. I have a twenty year old beer fridge that would qualify as a clunker.

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Bassetlover 4 years, 7 months ago

I was listening to Dave Ramsey yesterday and he made a good point about the Cash for Clunkers program. He hates the program because he feels the majority of people who traded in their clunkers ended up with new cars they can't afford to begin with! And that their willingness to take on additional debt will just snowball into bigger problems down the road.

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RETICENT_IRREVERENT 4 years, 7 months ago

I'm waiting with bated breath for "Cash for Refrigerators" to start.
I have my eye on a built-in induction wok station.

autie, I thank you in advance for your contribution.

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driedoregano 4 years, 7 months ago

stupid program.

for the cost it removed very little pollution but got rid of tons of Detroit inventory. that was the idea.

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autie 4 years, 7 months ago

I suppose it was OK if it saved a bunch of jobs. But again I wind up being the dumbass middle class guy that goes to work everyday, pays through the nose for health insurance etcc...I never ever qualify for diddly squat nothing as far as tax breaks, stimulus money, clunker money...Somedays I think it would all go to hell in a handbasket if us middle class slobs all quit our jobs.

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Flap Doodle 4 years, 7 months ago

Like the O'dude says about Medicare, it can be both good and bad!

" “Medicare and Medicaid are on an unsustainable path. Medicare is slated to go into the red in about eight to ten years. I don’t know if people are aware of that. If I was a senior citizen the thing I’d be worried about right now is Medicare starts running out of money because we haven’t done anything to make sure we are getting a good bang for our buck, when it comes to health care”.

Five minutes later:

“I do think it’s important for, particularly seniors who currently receive Medicare, to understand that if we’re able to get something right, like Medicare, then there should be a little more confidence that maybe, the government can have a role, not the dominant role, but a role in making sure the people are treated fairly when it comes to insurance.”"

http://hotair.com/archives/2009/08/25/obamateurism-of-the-day-104/

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Adrienne Sanders 4 years, 7 months ago

Salvage companies don't win b/c the cars engines have to be ruined completely. I think it's a very short sighted plan. It gets some gas-guzzlers off the road and gives auto workers and car dealers some business in the (very) short term. Getting rid of the low MPG cars is the only good that comes of it, and really that's a tiny, tiny drop in the bucket and doesn't do anything to reduce oil dependence.

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bd 4 years, 7 months ago

I agree with Dan also, I don't have a clunker but I need a newer car, so I can't use the program that is using my tax $'s . There is also a problem that the lower income buyers can't afford a new car and the recycled affordable clunkers are not availible for resale to them!

So who wins? The middle class clunker owners and the salvage companys? Definetly not the lowers class !

YOUR TAX $'s AT WORK!

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Donnuts 4 years, 7 months ago

I think it could be a beneficial package. I can think of several ways it could benefit everyone involved. It could benefit dealers who are sinking, people who don't have cars or cars that are not 'safe'. It could get the scrapping industry a hand and salvage industry a hand (it is probably different than when I used junk cars to build a car because cars are built a lot differently than in the '60's). The sideline benefits could be that it makes the person more happy driving the newer car and lessens the frustration of someone breaking down on the side of the road and waiting for help or frustrations that lead to road rage. It also gives cars that sit on lots that are used a new home that are more roadworthy than cars that are on the road before they dilapidate through time due to not being used. I would be all for it but I am not completely familiar with where exactly the tax money comes from.

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