Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Fast Trains and Slow, Puny, Expensive Cars | The Weekly Standard

Fast Trains and Slow, Puny, Expensive Cars | The Weekly Standard

The Standard on (above link) on the Administrations closed door deal with Big Auto on emission standards after taking the rule making authority from Congress.
This represents nearly everything that’s bad about the Obama administration: a disdain for the normal legislative process and the rule of law; a disregard for consumer choice; a commitment to intrusive government regulations that sap Americans’ liberty and empty their wallets; and a general arrogance that this administration, not the American people, knows best. House Republicans would do well to respond to this with high-profile legislation to restore the rule of law and a sense of sanity.
Doing the deal Chicago style with Lobbyists behind closed doors doesn't inspire any confidence in outcome either. Here's from Issa's letter to Obama,
“It has come to my attention that the new Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) and EPAvehicle greenhouse gas (GHG) standards announced by President Obama and select automakers on July 29, 2011, were negotiated in secret, outside the scope of the law, and could generate significant negative impacts for consumers. Specifically, I am concerned about the lack of transparency in the process leading up to the agreement, the expected increase in cost per vehicle, and the negative impact these standards could have on the safety of automobiles.”
And here's    saying planning anything out to 2025 a bit of a crock,
According to my sources, a mid-way review of 2017-2025 standards was agreed to in principle by all the major stakeholder stakeholders some time ago. And for obvious reasons: with disruptive new technologies under development and the trajectory of fuel prices remaining an unknown quantity, nobody knows precisely what technologies will be available and what the market will demand come 2017. Like California’s ZEV mandate, a push to kill the mid-term review makes CAFE even less responsive to the market than it already is. If anything, environmental groups should embrace a review of current standards because there’s a good chance fuel prices will be higher and the nation will be more determined than ever to sacrifice for higher emissions standards. Besides, if CAFE loses touch with the market and has no opportunity to sync back up, the industry could be in for another disastrous downturn. And no matter how pro-regulation you are, it’s tough to argue that CAFE should be totally unresponsive to market forces. Unless you know exactly what the market will look like in 2025 (in which case, let’s start a hedge fund), trying to set 2025 emissions standards in stone now makes no sense at all.
I vote for the hedge fund.

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