Friday, April 6, 2012

Taxpayers' $1.4B 'Investment' in Nissan EV May Make Volt Look Good by Comparison

National Legal & Policy Center ^ | April 6, 2012 | Paul Chesser

While General MotorsChevy Volt assembly workers are sidelined for five weeks (and more this summer) because demand for its strongly hyped electric car is weak, the prospects for its chief rival – Nissan’s Leaf – are shaky at best.

Nissan North America, Inc. – a subsidiary of its Japanese parent – is the beneficiary of a $1.4 billion Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturingloan from the U.S. Department of Energy, to convert a plant in Smyrna, Tenn. to produce the Leaf and batteries for it. The project’s promoters say the alterations will lead to 1,300 new jobs, enabling Nissan to produce up to 150,000 Leafs and 200,000 battery packs per year, which will lead to the all-important avoidance of 204,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions – or so they say.
But there’s just one problem: Sales of the Leaf are not much better than the Volt’s have been, and lately have been much worse. In 2011 Chevrolet sold 7,671 of its plug-in Volt, whose range is extended with the help of a small gasoline tank. Nissan sold 9,674 of the purely electric Leaf last year. So far through the end of March this year GM has delivered 4,095 Volts, while only 1,733 Leafs have been sold.
So if demand isn’t strong enough to keep a GM line running to build the Volt, how can the current level of sales for the Leaf justify the enormous plant investment Nissan is making in Tennessee? USA Today reported a few weeks ago that as gasoline prices reach $4 per gallon, electric vehicles still “face dark days.” Industry expert LMC Automotive predicts EV sales will remain below 1 percent through 2017.
Why would this be? Because even with billions of dollars in “investment” from the government to helpFord, Nissan, Fisker,Tesla, andThe Vehicle Production Group build EVs, and to fund companies likeEcotality to build out a charging network at places like Cracker Barrel , the technology is impractical for most people. Besides the obvious range anxiety experienced by EV drivers, because the batteries don’t maintain their charge long enough, there’s the problem of lengthy times required to “fill up” again. Even the extremely expensive ($40,000 each) and hard-to-find “fast-chargers” (440 volt) take 30 minutes to get a Leaf going again for any reasonable distance, and most chargers require four to five hours to re-boost.
At least the Volt has a small gas engine that extends its range, although its (highly subsidized) $41,000 retail cost is still a lot to overcome for most consumers. But the Leaf is all-electric – no juice, no go, which may be a big reason the Volt has inched past it in sales recently. One EV enthusiast had to stop and recharge his Leaf four times to travel 180 miles last year. Besides the facts that range is reduced even more by using heating and air conditioning, or by driving on inclines, there is the issue that you can’t even depend on its battery gauge (the equivalent of a fuel gauge in a gas-powered car).
“I am ready to turn over a new Leaf – my own,” wrote Rob Eshman, editor-in-chief of The Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles.
While Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn (pictured) would obviously love to see sales of the Leaf take off, he has said (in so many words) that government subsidies are the reason for his pursuit of EV technology, rather than successes based upon qualities such as value, styling, safety rankings, or popularity with the purchasing public.
“It does not matter if, for example, Portugal stops the incentives, as long as other countries like the United States continue to support,” Ghosn told Reuters in October. “If countries like France, Japan and the UK support and then China, that is about to start to support, that's fine.”
The Brazilian-born Frenchman, who also chairs Renault, also does not hide the fact that he supports government control of markets and its attempts to stimulate technologies, no matter the cost.
“We must diversify the energy mix used to fuel our vehicles,” Ghosnwrote last month for Forbes. “Petroleum-based fuels now account for 96 percent of the world’s automotive energy mix. By mandating targets and requirements at the level of the state, we can increase the mix of renewable fuels.”
And, obviously, he believes in the state’s expenditure of billions of dollars on EVs. At this week’s New York International Auto Show, he repeated his assertion that Nissan’s future depended on development of EVs, predicting to the Wall Street Journal, “when we get to 500,000 sales we can be profitable.” He believes that goal will be attained in 2015-2016.
Meanwhile an analysis of fuel efficiency by the New York Times determined that it would take nine years before Leaf owners break even by saving money on gasoline versus the extra cost of the EV. That is a dubious assumption, since after that amount of time all – or a lot of – the depleted battery pack will need to be replaced. Time will tell, but if like most batteries it needs entire replacement, the cost is likely to exceed $30,000.
Nissan disputes that, of course. But is it worth risking the unknown for a vehicle that is only capable of traveling much fewer miles than would an equivalent gas-powered car such as the Nissan Versa or Chevy Cruze?
Not that that matters to Ghosn, since in his view, the purpose of the automobile business is to serve the collective through the manipulations of government.
“We have a social responsibility to ensure that this industry grows sustainably,” he wrote in his Forbes piece, “and if we uphold our responsibility, we will increase the quality of life for everyone on our planet.”
Paul Chesser is an associate fellow for the National Legal and Policy Center.

With Voter ID out the window, don’t be overwrought by the onslaught of fraud!

Denver Examiner ^ | April 5, 2012 | Sunana Batra

I’ve been noticing every time I access my banks account online, or my water bill, and particularly by cell phone bill, I am compelled to jump through more hoops than Alex the cat, ‘for my own good’ they insist. Yet at the same time banks beef up their security, force you to create cheat sheets to remember half a dozen passwords just to access your account in an effort to protect your privacy, our elected officials clear the way for your vote to be stolen. Way to go!
Yesterday, Colorado Senate Democrats nixed a proposal to ask voters whether people should provide photo identification at the polls. It’s disappointing that Colorado law makers decided not to protect voters from voter fraud, essentially stripping the democratic system of its strength. It is unbecoming of a state that considers itself liberal and tolerant. So now, Colorado is tolerant of people casting votes, one of our most precious rights, without any burden of proof that they are who they say they are?
That Colorado, a state every political observer, commentator or hack will openly admit, is a ‘battleground’ state this coming election, would reject voter ID or any other effort aimed at maintaining the integrity of the vote, is shameful. Clean elections are the foundation of a democratic society, those who corrupt them are the actual vote suppressors. I fully expected the unions and the democrats to do their utmost to keep our voting systems lax in order to swing Colorado right into the Obama camp.
At some point, those that deny intellectual intelligence and credit to the same minorities they claim to be trying to protect, will have to realize they are denying these people possess basic maturity and responsibility and temper their hysteria and straw men accordingly.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Did this fraud , Obama, ever even graduate from Harvard?

Obama: NOT a Lawyer... NOT a Professor... (and Surely No Genius, Either!)
Reaganite Republican ^ | April 5, 2012 | Reaganite Republican

As the hollow Obama myth continues to unravel -and any asking relevant questions are still dismissed as 'fringe' kooks by the White House/MSM- just forget for a minute the birth certificate, gangster pals, and unexplained disappearances of those who happen to get-in-the-way...

Here's a refresher on yet another Obama background cover-up episode, the sort that makes it impossible to take his word on anything: are you aware that the former editor of the Harvard Law Revue in reality lost his license to practice law because he lied on the application...?

If that's not bad enough, 'lawyer' Michelle Obama's last place of employment -a fake, mafia/union-style 'no work' position as 'legal counsel' for the University of Chicago hospitals at an inflated salary (allegedly a payback for Barack's obtaining them a government grant)- would also require a legal license... or so you'd think: seems Moo-chelle was taking- in $300K+/year while not qualified to practice law either. Interestingly, the job no longer even exists.

Why don't the Obamas -touted as brilliant minds/teachers- have their law licenses? Seems they where forced to cough them up, in Barack's case to avoid charges for false statements i.e. he had 'no prior aliases', among other things.

For those not familiar with the intricacies of the Bar Association, a "Voluntary Surrender" of one's license is not something where you just forget to renew it. No, a "Voluntary Surrender" is something you do when you've been accused of something, and you 'voluntarily surrender' your license five seconds before the state suspends you.

Michelle Obama also 'voluntarily surrendered' her law license in 1993. The search engine linked above has blocked all info on 'disciplinary action', so we may never know the truth as to why.

And Barack Obama was nothing like the legal scholar he's purported to have been: former students have recently come out as 'shocked' at their former teacher's ignorance of the US Constitution, but that just goes to show you that a '
senior lecturer' is one thing, a fully ranked law professor is entirely another: and Barack Obama was NOT a Constitutional Law Professor at the University of Chicago- period.

Yes, the University of Chicago released a statement in March 2008 saying Sen. Obama (D-Ill.) "served as a professor" in the law school. In reality, that is a title Obama -who only taught courses there part-time- never held, a spokesman for the school confirmed in 2008. "He did not hold the title of Professor of Law," said Marsha Ferziger Nagorsky, an Assistant Dean for Communications and Lecturer in Law at the University of Chicago School of Law.

According to the the highest tenured faculty member at Chicago Law, Obama applied for a position as an adjunct and wasn't even considered. But soon afterward, the law school got a phone call from the Board of Trustees telling them to find him an office, put him on the payroll, and give him a class to teach. They said he didn't have to be a member of the faculty, but they needed to give him a temporary position. He was never a professor... and barely an adjunct.

The other (real) professors 'hated him because he was lazy, unqualified, never attended any of the faculty meetings, and it was clear that the position was nothing more than a political stepping stool.'

Another Chicago Law professor said that Obama 'had the lowest intellectual capacity in the building'. The same prof expressed serious doubt as to whether BHO was ever legitimately an editor on the Harvard Law Review, because if he was, he would be the first and only editor of an Ivy League law review to never be published while in school (publication is a standard prerequisite for the position).

Perhaps this all helps to explain then the way that the former 'Constitutional Senior Lecturer' cited the U.S. Constitution during his most recent State of the Union Address. Unfortunately, the quote he cited was from the Declaration of Independence ....
not the Constitution .

Obama said: "We find unity in our incredible diversity, drawing on the promise enshrined in our Constitution: the notion that we are all created equal."

Uh, btw Mr. President... those promises are not a 'notion'... the Founding Fathers said they are 'unalienable rights- BIG difference. And the document you quoted form was actually
The Declaration of Independence:

'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.'

And this is the same guy who lectured the Supreme Court just moments later?

Did this fraud ever even graduate from Harvard...?

Job Growth Loses Steam (Unexpectedly Bad!)

The Wall Street Journal ^ | 04/06/12 | Josh Mitchell etal
WASHINGTON—U.S. job growth slowed in March, and the labor force shrank, signaling that the economy could be losing momentum.
Jobs outside of agriculture grew by 120,000 last month—half the number that the economy added the prior month—the Labor Department said Friday, marking the first time since November that job growth fell below 200,000.
The unemployment rate, obtained by a separate survey of U.S. households, ticked down a tenth of a percentage point to 8.2%, but the drop resulted in part from fewer Americans seeking work.
Economists surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires expected a gain of 203,000 in payrolls and for the jobless rate to remain at 8.3% for March.

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Why the Supreme Court Will Strike Down All of Obamacare!

By Peter Ferrara

Barack Obama made a national laughingstock out of himself with his recent comments on the Obamacare law now before the Supreme Court. Obama said on Monday, “I’m confident that the Supreme Court will not take what would be an unprecedented, extraordinary step of overturning a law that was passed by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress.”

President Obama is not stupid. But he thinks you are. He knows the Obamacare health care takeover was not passed by a strong majority. But he figures you’re so dumb he can rewrite recent history in plain sight. The law passed a House with a huge Democrat majority at the time by only 219-212. It did not get a single Republican vote, but the opposition was bipartisan.
The law also barely squeaked past a Senate filibuster despite an overwhelming 60 Senate Democrats, and even then humiliating buyoffs were necessary. Public opposition was so strong that the ultraliberal Democrat controlled Massachusetts, the only state to go for George McGovern in 1972, elected a Republican in a special election for Sen. Ted Kennedy’s seat, to terminate the Democrats’ filibuster-proof majority. That required final passage of the law improperly in violation of Congressional rules as a reconciliation measure, which is only to be used to clean up the budget and so cannot be filibustered.
And given that Obama is so certain you can’t remember what happened just two years ago, he is more than certain that you have never heard of the ancient history of Marbury v. Madison, where the 14-year old Supreme Court in 1803 took the then unprecedented step of overturning a provision of law adopted by a strong majority of a democratically elected Congress, in the Judiciary Act of 1789. That case was where the Supreme Court first recognized its power of judicial review, under which it is empowered to strike down laws found unconstitutional. As the Wall Street Journal observed on Tuesday:
“In the 209 years since, the Supreme Court has invalidated part or all of countless laws on grounds that they violated the Constitution. All of these laws were passed by a ‘democratically elected’ legislature of some kind, either Congress or in one of the states. And no doubt many of them were passed by ‘strong’ majorities….probably stronger majorities than passed the Affordable Care Act.”
As a former constitutional law professor and President of the Harvard Law Review, Obama no doubt knows all about Marbury v. Madison and judicial review. But he figures he can safely assume a majority of you know nothing about it, and his party controlled media will not tell you anything concerning it at this inopportune moment. Hence, another classic example of what I have called Calculated Deception.
President Obama further assailed any Supreme Court decision ruling his Obamacare health care takeover unconstitutional as “judicial activism, or a lack of judicial restraint, that an unelected group of people would somehow overturn a duly constituted and passed law.” Alexander Hamilton disagreed over 200 years ago in Federalist 78, writing, “There is no position which depends on clearer principles, than that every act of a delegated authority, contrary to the tenor of the commission under which it is exercised, is void. No legislative act, therefore, contrary to the Constitution, can be valid. . . .”
Or, as the Wall Street Journal explained on Monday:
“Judicial activism is not something that happens every time the Supreme Court overturns a statute. The Justices owe deference to Congress and the executive, but only to the extent that the political branches stay within the boundaries of the Constitution. Improper activism is when the Court itself strays beyond the founding document to find new rights or enhance its own authority without proper constitutional grounding.”

The Journal added, “Far from seeking an activist ruling, the Obamacare plaintiffs aren’t asking the Court to overturn even a single commerce clause precedent.”

In my role as General Counsel of the American Civil Rights Union, I filed 3 amicus curiae briefs with the Supreme Court in the Obamacare litigation. I also filed amicus briefs in the lower federal courts in the cases in Virginia and Florida.

New round of U.S. BS green energy loans? ^
WASHINGTON, April 6 (UPI) -- The U.S. Energy Department said it is preparing to approve more federal loan guarantees for green energy projects.
The development comes amid controversy over the Obama administration's clean energy investments, after California solar-panel firm Solyndra, recipient of a $535 million U.S. Department of Energy loan guarantee, went bankrupt last year.
Developers of about three dozen projects in the loan guarantee pipeline but that weren't approved in time for last year's Sept. 30 deadline are eligible for loan guarantees under a separate program that funds innovative clean energy projects, the department said.
Energy Department loan program chief David Frantz, in a letter Thursday to U.S. Sen. Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M., chairman of the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources and Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, ranking member of the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, said the department expects to begin issuing conditional commitments over the next several months "after completing a rigorous internal and external review of each application."
Projects selected for funding would be "subject to a robust monitoring effort to ensure that taxpayers' investments are protected," he wrote.
He said the number of projects and amount of loan guarantees depends on the "government's assessment of the risk level of the projects selected."
In his letter Frantz defended the Energy Department loan program, saying it has "helped the United States keep pace in the fierce global race for clean energy technologies."
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Jobless Claims Keep Getting Revised Upward...Obama fraud? [56 of last 57 week!)]

WALL STREET JOURNAL ^ | 4/5/12 | Eric Morath
News Thursday that the U.S. Department of Labor revised upward its weekly initial jobless-claims number for the previous week didn’t cause much of a huge stir on financial markets, but it represented the latest in an unusual string of adjustments to the closely followed data.
The Labor Department has now revised upward its first estimate of seasonally adjusted claims in 56 of the past 57 weeks, a Dow Jones analysis of claims reports found. Revisions to government data occur on a regular basis but it is uncommon for numbers to nearly always be restated in the same direction, upward!(hmmmmm!)

(Excerpt) Read more at ...


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The Plot

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It's Only Money

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Bridge to prosperity

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A Mulligan

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Behind Closed Doors

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The Question

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To Afford Gasoline...

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