The Worst and the Best

Today I gambled and paid to license my car for another year. All it will take to make it totally worthless is to crash one of the bumpers. Although it runs great and does not exhibit any symptoms of an aging car like overheating, loss of oil, or knocking noises from the engine it is still an aged auto. Most of the repairs I have had to make were on parts like tires, windshield wiper blades, batteries, hood shocks, and brakes. All total I must admit this is the most reliable car I have owned in my lifetime, and I have owned thirteen. The last car was an Oldsmobile which gave me good service for ten years but when it reached 90,000 miles the trouble began.

The Worst Car I ever Owned-1969 Toyota Corolla

The worst car I bought was a 1969 Toyota Corolla which needed a new crankshaft after twelve months and twelve thousand miles. The absolute best car I have owned is my 2006 Toyota Avalon which is seventeen years old and has 184, 000 miles on it. The amazing thing is that nearly every gadget on it still works, The lumbar seat crapped out too early, and the useless rear window shade gets stuck in the up position, but everything else still functions. The interior is still clean and fresh looking, and the exterior paint is just a little faded. I am not ashamed to own it or drive it. My previous cars were rusted, faded, and not functioning 100%.

The Best Car I Owned 2006 Toyota Avalon

What bothers me most about the idea of buying a new car is my age. Just to replace my Avalon with a new one will cost over fifty thousand dollars. I would have to take an seven year loan to pay for it with my current fixed income. When I was sixty-seven a seven year loan didn’t seem like much, but at my current age there may not be seven years left.

In a few weeks I have to take some tests at the department of motor vehicles to retain my driver’s license. It’s not a big deal just vision, and a driving test. By law, I must prove that I am capable to drive every two years, and in another couple of years the test interval changes to every year. So in my mind I ask myself why spend such a huge amount of money on another car if I am suddenly unable to drive it anymore? In the meantime, I’ll continue to run my trusty Avalon until one of us dies.

We May Indeed Be Nuts!

My Flag Flies Everyday

My Flag Flies Everyday

I am almost over the election. I haven’t blogged because the need to do so dried up when BO won. This week, however, I have to speak my piece on the latest of Uncle Sam’s idiotic moves. Why do we want to bail out GM? This car company has consistently thrown poor quality, and reliability at us in the name of “Made in the USA.” The same goes for the UAW. I tried my best to hold out by buying American for many years. I owned an Oldsmobile Intrigue for eight years. It was without a doubt, the best GM car I ever owned. I bragged about it’s reliability and performance. I tried in vane to get my kids to buy “American.” No amount of reason or guilt worked. Two of my kids  don’t even know that there are cars made in America that are not Honda or Toyota. They grew up on Honda, and Toyota. They are brand faithful. At the same time I was bragging about my Intrigue with 110,000 miles on it, my daughter bragged about her Honda with 180,000. All she ever did was change oil, and put brakes, tires and gas in it.  At 111,000 miles my Intrigue crapped out. It leaked fluid into the cyclinders and locked the engine tight. After I spent $1800 to replace a leaking intake manifold, I learned on the I-net that GM cars are notorious for this failure. They have had the problem for years, but have never taken any steps to fix it. 

The US car companies, management and the UAW, have let the Japs take them down. Now GM wants the tax payer to bail them out. The argument is that if they are allowed to go bankrupt, many thousands of jobs will be lost, thus fueling the recession.

The truth is that filing for bankruptcy will not be a loss of jobs. They can go on making crappy cars as is their usual business. The difference is that they won’t get any “free money,” from the taxpayer.

A few years ago, GM divested itself of a division called Delphi. Delphi makes electrical systems for GM and other car companies. GM gave Delphi as much pension debt as they could. Eventually, Delphi filed for chapter eleven. They couldn’t make a profit with all the baggage GM dumped on them. I know, because I am a stockholder. Want to know what happens to the stockholder when a company files for bankruptcy? The old shares become worthless, meaning the stockholder loses his investment. GM didn’t give a hoot about losing Delphi, it became Delphi’s problem.  Even though Delphi filed for bankruptcy, it has continued to operate for several years. They keep on shipping orders. They even entertained the purchase of another electronics company. How can a business that is in bankruptcy buy another company?

What GM is afraid of is all it’s incompetent managers losing their options and bonuses paid in stock.

The capitalistic system rewards companies that can design, make, and sell useful products that buyers want. GM does not do any of these things. They design cars that have a shorter life than their competitors, their designs are ugly, and they are made by the most unproductive union in the world, i.e. the UAW.

If we reward GM and the UAW with a government bailout, we are indeed nuts. Let the system work, we’ll all be better off for it. We won’t have to worry about BO turning the country socialist. WE will hand a socialist government to him on a silver platter.