Thursday, December 11, 2008


Have You Seen This?

I just finished watching an amazing and infuriating film, Who Killed the Electric Car?

We just added it to our collection at the library. It shows General Motors creating an effective all-electric vehicle to comply with the emission standards that the State of California established in the 90s.

It then goes on to show GM suing the California Air Resource Board over those emissions mandates, then withdrawing the vehicles under the pretense of a lack of consumer interest after which it destroys the vehicles that it would only lease to consumers in the first place.

You see them being carted off to Arizona, first to be crushed, then later literally shredded to erase all signs that they ever existed. They then begin touting the hydrogen fuel cell as an alternative, one that pushes clean air technology back into the future and the oil companies back on center stage.

Why hydrogen cells? Because the oil companies can market the fuels.

This is GM's EV-1, of which only one car remains. Talk about genocide.

Other car makers also created EV models, even Toyota and Honda. They all withdrew them before they had a chance in the marketplace. Talk about the Goliath effect of the petroleum industry and the Federal Government, which for the past 8 years have been one and the same.

The film holds several groups culpable for the murder of the electric car: the automakers themselves, the oil companies, the California Air Resource Board, and the federal government (under guess who) for joining the lawsuit and promoting hydrogen fuel cells as "the (fake) future."

Here's the Ford Ranger EV, also history.

If you have felt like supporting the bailout of the Big Three in the past weeks, watch this and see what you think then. I have seen too many Michael Moore films and been a part of the labor movement for too long not to feel for our auto companies. But they are run by truly evil people who are in cahoots with other, equally malicious leaders of the petroleum industry. They must be stopped, and our only hope is an uprising that comes from the people.

Poor California--its Governor Ahnold is tooling around in a fuel cell Hummer, lying his head off to the citizens of that state.

See this film. The link in the title is to Netflix, which has it, should you not live in a community with a library that has a copy or a properly activist indie theater.

I'm jazzed about the direction we can take with our President-Elect. But don't expect anything like courage to come from Congress without one hell of a lot of public involvement.

Update yourself, then get in touch with our elected officials. Thomas Friedman's latest column, "While Detroit Slept," focuses on a new effort for the electric car, from a Palo Alto company, the Better Place, with agreements sealed with Hawaii, Australia, Israel, and Denmark. Check it out. As usual, GM snubbed the wizard who improved the technology. The big steps, Friedman points out, aren't going to be taken by US major automakers. Go to TBP's web site and sign up to become an electric car activist for your community.

It'll make you feel better after you see the movie.As for me, I'm feeling a little less murderous. But I still wanna kill somebody, and it ain't no electric car.

Just the usual suspects, I guess.

That film pointed out as well, that any real changes in the auto industry have been gvmnt mandated.
So this may be a golden opportunity to force teh change.
It really burned my toast when GM said they need mre $ & time to *develop* an electric vehicle.
Just pull out the existing blueprints for teh EV1, only this time, use the good battery. Even with the inferior battery, the vehicle could get 100 miles per charge.. With the better battery, 300 miles per charge.
Even the 100 miles per charge style met the driving needs of 90% of people.

Clearly GM was in bed with big oil to kill the electric car.... but it begs the question-- where is big oil now???

Too busy counting record profits to give the auto makers a hand?

But the US automakers are also shortsighted. They were claiming a successful electric car would cost
somewhere in the $45k range.

Wake up & realize the recession.

The EV1 was smaller & less expensive. We need affordable electric cars. They can offer upscale things with more bells & whistles, but the masses need reasonable & affordable. When you watch this film you realize GM has no excuse.
One thing the film pointed out was the ease of upkeep on these puppies--they'd have put the auto parts business in the red.

Nothing much to fix.

The industry made a bad, bad decision long ago, and like the policies of the Bush Admin., they're hard to reverse in more enlightened times.
I have seen it 20 times if I have seen it once..not to mention I lived through it here in Cali..the whole sordid bullshittery of it just chaps my ass.

I blogged recently about it too and said Obama and his group need to watch it before they give Detroit a dime.
I will have to see the flick. I always felt the US auto industry was in cahoots with big oil and I hope the movie explains the connection. I do not want to see the auto industry collapse, but I do not want it to be run the same way by the same groups in cahoots with one another. I am sick and tired of the UAW being blamed with everything wrong with the big 3.
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