Mark my words…


I just saw a TV commercial that I found so offensive, that I have to write about it. What was it? A Chevy Volt commercial.

What if Gasoline was so inexpensive that you never considered it’s cost? What if it came out of a spigot on the side of your house and you could top off your car’s tank every day? What if you could drive to work and fill up on your employers spigot?

That’s exactly how they are getting people to think about electric/hybrid cars.

Who are they kidding? It “fills up” every time you plug it in!

And they are getting away with it because electricity is cheap enough, compared to gasoline, that people are willing to think that way.

Today.

Let’s think ahead. Think about where the price of electricity will go if electric-powered vehicles reach any significant penetration of the market. What if their use reached 50% of all personal vehicles?

What will happen to the price of electricity? Where will the increased demand be supplied from? Will we be able to ignore the cost of driving an electric vehicle then? How long until we will be choosing between driving to work to earn the money we need to pay our electric bill, or walking so we can afford to light our home, or keep our refrigerator cold?

Will the cost of gasoline go down as demand decreases? It may, but it will stay high enough to ensure record profits and suppress any resurgence in demand.

No. Go ahead and buy into the commercials that tell us how great it is to go a month without stopping at a gas station. Ignore the cost of electricity in operating that hybrid.

They’re talking about the price of the oranges in the fruit basket, but ignoring the cost of the apples.

Just once, I’d like to see a car manufacturer talk about the cost per mile of the electricity that it takes to run those cars. I’m sure it’s probably pretty low. Today. Where will it go when electric-powered cars reach 20-30-50% of cars on the road?

Most people think the main downside of electric vehicles will be the environmental impact of the materials in the spent batteries and their disposal. That may be true, but the cost to our electric grid and our electricity-based infrastructure is being ignored.

How may solar panels will it take to make your electric/hybrid car self sufficient? How big of a windmill will it need? It’s bigger than you think. Then imagine if every neighbor on your street added that so they could drive their car? Solar/wind won’t save us from it.

I’m not anti-electric car, like Neil Cavuto. I just want to know where we are going to get the extra electricity from. Reducing oil imports and finding alternative sources of energy is good, no matter where we use it.

Personally, I like the whole electric car idea. I’d consider one if I could afford it. I can’t, but that doesn’t make me a hater. And I think now is the time to exploit their benefits. The early-adopters will enjoy using electricity while it’s cheap, while their employer will let them plug in at work for free.

By the time they become mainstream, though, that will all have changed. Will we be able to afford it then? Or will it just be another channel for big business to extract wealth from our pockets before we can spend it on food and healthcare? Will it just bolster profits from electric-producers, or generate tax-loopholes for them?

What makes me mad is that they are selling us on the idea, but not giving us the answers we need to make the decision based on something more than their commercials. They’re treating the public like the idiots they are, hoping they will buy into the deal without questioning it, and selling them a pig-in-a-poke.

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Posted in Rants, Tech Stuff, TV