Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Hybrid Cars Fizzle : Too Much Government

Little wonder the 'green' advantage has to have government support to make it work. The market place will do the job if the politicians can be shown that they won't be able to get any money or power by subverting it.

Hybrid Cars' Share of Sales Stalls
Source: Chris Woodyard, "Hybrid Cars' Share of Sales Stalls," USA Today, June 21, 2011.

Despite months of high gas prices, a bevy of new fuel-stingy cars with conventional gas engines may be eating into sales of pricier gas-electric hybrids, reports USA Today. Sales of high-mileage, high-value conventional compacts such as the Hyundai Elantra, Ford Focus and Chevrolet Cruze are hot, while hybrid sales have stagnated.

The hybrid share of U.S. auto sales peaked at 3.6 percent in July 2009, Edmunds.com says.
Last month, it was 1.6 percent, depressed also by production cuts for some models due to the Japan disaster, but not enough to account for the entire drop.

The new conventionally powered cars use various strategies to boost gas mileage to near hybrid levels -- without the batteries and electric motors that can add $6,000 on average to a vehicle's cost, according to J.D. Power and Associates.

"Even with the fuel savings, it doesn't make sense to buy a hybrid" for many buyers, says Power senior manager Mike Omotoso. "This year, we had $4 gas (in many cities), but we saw the introduction of compacts that get 40 miles per gallon (mpg). All of these cars are considerably cheaper than hybrids."

While the nation's top-selling hybrid, the Toyota Prius, has a 50 mpg combined rating, other hybrid sedans get less -- Ford's Fusion hybrid gets 41 mpg in the city and 36 mpg on the highway; Hyundai's Sonata hybrid gets 35 city and 40 highway.

Meanwhile, all Elantras and at least some Focus, Chevy Cruze and Honda Civic models are rated at 40 mpg or more on the highway.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Mortgage Market Solution : More Market Control

What is fantastic about all this melt down in the mortgage arena is the Frank/Dodd bill will continue down the same path that brought us the first disaster resulting in a total crash of the financial markets.

The definition of insanity works well here, in the 'doing something over and over but expecting different results' is accepted as a Washington way of doing things. The only problem is when someone finally turns on the light of reality for these politicians, who will be able to see their way out of the nightmare?

Competitive Private Mortgage Markets Are the Solution, Not the Problem
Source: Kevin Villani and Patric H. Hendershott, "The Subprime Lending Debacle: Competitive Private Markets Are the Solution, Not the Problem," Cato Institute, June 20, 2011.

The United States' market-government hybrid mortgage system nurtured the excessively risky loans, financed with too much leverage, which fueled the U.S. housing bubble of the last decade and resulted in the systemic collapse of the global financial system, say Kevin Villani, former chief economist of Freddie Mac, and Patric Hendershott, a part-time chair in real estate economics and finance at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland.

The responsibility for the massive failures of the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac falls directly on regulators and indirectly on their political overseers.

Private and GSE prudential regulators were given politically determined social lending goals that ultimately trumped prudential regulation, forcing the GSEs to fund subprime lending in competition with private label securitizers. The result was the extension of lower and lower quality loans, creating a race-to-the-bottom between the GSEs and private mortgage providers, all while regulators and politicians looked on approvingly.

The financial crisis resulted when many of those loans turned sour in the latter part of the last decade.

There is no evidence that the U.S. housing market has unique characteristics requiring a hybrid GSE system, thus Villani and Hendershott conclude that the system and the political risks it is subject to are unnecessary. Any U.S. housing finance policy that does not safeguard prudential regulation from political influence by separating housing subsidy from finance and eliminating government- induced distortions will result in another systemic failure, say Villani and Hendershott.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Pension Plans Costs Drive Taxes Sky High

If you listen to the progressive liberal Democrats, we don't have a spending problem, we have a revenue problem so we have to raise taxes to make ends meet. But what they are referring to here is we have to raise taxes mostly on a small minority of taxpayers, namely the rich or those close to being rich.

More closely defined, we have to tax everyone that has a job. This is the new definition of being rich these days as we are having more and more people out of work. Many progressives believe it's necessary that we just take the money from the industrial sectors by force that are waiting for better environment conditions to arrive where they can make a profit for their companies, and not have to take a loss every year just to satisfy progressive politicians. After all, progressive have a much better plan for the money than the greedy companies, support likely progressive voters.

In the end, higher taxes to support crushing mandates will destroy the gold goose that the liberals are demanded more eggs from than they can give. And when it comes crashing down because we did nothing to stop it, who will the progressives blame. You got it, everyone that tried to stop it.

How Much Would a Fully Funded Pension System Cost?
Source: Robert Novy-Marx and Joshua D. Rauh, "The Revenue Demands of Public Employee Pension Promises," Northwestern University, June 2011.

The condition of state and local government defined benefit pension systems in the United States has received national attention in debates over government budgets. Missing in the discussion has been an analysis of the revenue demands of the pension promises to public employees.

If states and local governments are going to pay pensions under current policies, how much more revenue will need to be devoted to these systems? Robert Novy-Marx of the University of Rochester and Joshua D. Rauh of Northwestern University attempt to fill that gap by providing calculations of the increases in contributions that would be required to achieve fully funded pension systems.

Without policy changes, contributions to state and local pension systems in the United States would have to immediately increase by a factor of 2.5, reaching 14.2 percent of the total own-revenue generated by state and local governments (taxes, fees and charges).
This represents a tax increase of $1,398 per U.S. household per year, above and beyond revenue generated by expected economic growth.

In 13 states the necessary increases are more than $1,500 per household per year, and in five states they are more than $2,000 per household per year.

Shifting all new employees onto defined contribution plans and Social Security still leaves required increases at an average of $1,223 per household. Even with a hard freeze of all benefits at today's levels, contributions still have to rise by more than $800 per U.S. household to achieve full funding in 30 years.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Canadain HealthCare System Wait Time Goes Up

Just think how a "single payer" system will impact the US given what has transpired in Canada. Do we have more people that are dependent then the Canadians? Do we have more people that want medical care without insurance plans that will depend on government assistance then the Canadians?

All indication point to a complete break down in our health care system if ObamaCare is not stopped. The history of such systems shows the way to ruin. As the saying goes, 'if you ignore the mistakes in history, you certain to repeat them'.

Long Waits Cost Canadians Millions
Source: Nadeem Esmail, "The Private Cost of Public Queues," Fraser Institute, March/April 2011.

The national median waiting time in Canada from specialist appointment to treatment increased from 8 weeks in 2009 to 9.3 weeks in 2010. But the measurement of waiting times, or the examination of the absolute delay Canadians must endure in order to receive medically necessary care, is only one way of looking at the burden of waiting for health care.

We can also calculate the privately borne cost of waiting: the value of the time that is lost while waiting for treatment, says Nadeem Esmail, the Fraser Institute's former Director of Health System Performance Studies and Manager of the Alberta Policy Research Center.

Esmail's estimation of the cost of waiting in 2010 uses a Statistics Canada finding that 11 percent of people were adversely affected by their wait for non-emergency surgery in 2005.
This results in an estimate that nearly 1.13 million weeks were "lost" while patients waited for treatment.
However, because this estimate is based on the assumption that all individuals face the same wait time for treatment in each specialty/province combination, it is mathematically equivalent to assuming that 11 percent of the productivity of all Canadians waiting for care was lost to a combination of mental anguish and the pain and suffering that accompany any wait for treatment.

Multiplying this lost time by an estimate of the average weekly wage of Canadians in 2010 gives an estimate of the cost of the productive time that was lost while individuals waited for medically necessary treatment in 2010.

The estimated cost of waiting for care in Canada was roughly $10,043 for each individual among the 11 percent of patients in the queue. That works out to roughly $912 million in lost productivity and leisure time.

This estimate assumes that only those hours during the average work week should be counted as lost. Valuing all hours of the week, including evenings and weekends but excluding eight hours of sleep per night, at the average hourly wage would increase the estimated cost of waiting to more than $2.79 billion, or about $3,384 per person.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Medicaid Out of Control : Progesssives Want More

This just we all wanted to here - ObamaCare bring in 3 million more people to Medicaid along with the 20 million for childless adults and, of course, the millions already on the tit and those ready to get on it.

Who will pay for all this? Oh wait, I know, raise taxes to pay for this on everyone except those bottom 50% of the population that pay no taxes. Cool!

Medicaid for the Middle Class?
Source: "A Glitch in Obamacare Could Give Middle Class Insurance Coverage Intended for the Poor," Washington Examiner, June 21, 2011.

President Barack Obama's health care law would let several million middle class people get nearly free insurance meant for the poor, a twist government number crunchers say they discovered only after the complex bill was signed, reports the Washington Examiner.

The change would affect early retirees: A married couple could have an annual income of about $64,000 and still get Medicaid, said officials who make long-range cost estimates for the Health and Human Services department. Up to 3 million people could qualify for Medicaid in 2014 as a result of the anomaly.

That's because, in a major change from today, most of their Social Security benefits would no longer be counted as income for determining eligibility. Early retirees would be a new group for Medicaid. While retirees can now start collecting Social Security at age 62, they must wait another three years to get Medicare, unless they're disabled.

The actuary's office said the 3 million early retirees who would become eligible for Medicaid are on top of an estimated 16 million to 20 million people that the law would already bring into the program, by opening it to childless adults with incomes near the poverty level.

Federal taxpayers will cover all of the initial cost of the expansion.

Higher Taxes Means Less Revenue - Fewer Jobs

Democrats, progressive liberal socialists, believe the only way to fix the financial mess we are in now is to take more from the economic system through higher taxes. It's hard to understand why Democrats believe taking more from those that fuel the system, by working hard, will some how solve a government spending nightmare?

History is a great teacher - Reagan proved lower taxes and incentives to succeed is the best way to make America prosperous. Progressive have no hint of this history. Progressive socialists believe all things come from government, including everyone eleses money.

Higher Taxes Don't Mean More Revenue
Source: Alan Reynolds, "Why 70 percent Tax Rates Won't Work," Wall Street Journal, June 16, 2011.

The intelligentsia of the Democratic Party is growing increasingly enthusiastic about raising the highest federal income tax rates to 70 percent or more. This is ostensibly with the intent to raise new revenue so federal spending could supposedly remain well above 24 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) rather than be scaled back toward the 19 percent average of 1997-2007, says Alan Reynolds, a senior fellow with the Cato Institute.

All this nostalgia about the good old days of 70 percent tax rates makes it sound as though only the highest incomes would face higher tax rates. In reality, there were a dozen tax rates between 48 percent and 70 percent during the 1970s.

Moreover, the individual income tax actually brought in less revenue when the highest tax rate was 70 percent to 91 percent than it did when the highest tax rate was 28 percent.

When the highest tax rate ranged from 91 percent to 92 percent (1951-63), even the lowest rate was quite high -- 20 percent or 22 percent. However, those super-high tax rates at all income levels brought in revenue of only 7.7 percent of GDP. Since the era of 70 percent tax rates, the U.S. income tax system has become far more "progressive."

Congressional Budget Office estimates show that from 1979 to 2007 average income tax rates fell by 110 percent to minus 0.4 percent from 4.1 percent for the second-poorest quintile of taxpayers. Average tax rates fell by 56 percent for the middle quintile and 39 percent for the fourth, but only 8 percent at the top.

Despite these massive tax cuts for the bottom 80 percent, overall federal revenues were the same 18.5 percent share of GDP in 2007 as they were in 1979 and individual tax revenues were nearly the same -- 8.7 percent of GDP in 1979 versus 8.4 percent in 2007.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Alternative Tax System Moves to Middle Classes

If there was ever a good reason to institute a 'flat tax', this is it. There are other reasons as well but it stands to reason everyone should pay the same percent of their personal income. Why is this so hard to understand? Shouldn't the lower income earners pay the same percentage rate as the rich? Wouldn't that be fair? Aren't progressive Democrats all about being fair?

Well, of course, it isn't all that hard to understand in that those in power that need the funds to get reelected cater to the moneyed group that pressures the politicians to keep the old system. Why is that? The old system benefits are easier to manipulate and therefore everyone makes out except the middle class that always has to pay the bills.

The Alternative Minimum Tax's Ever-Expanding Reach
Source: Veronique de Rugy, "The Facts about the Alternative Minimum Tax," Reason Magazine, June 10, 2011.

The Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) was created in 1969 to prevent 155 wealthy taxpayers from using deductions and credits to avoid paying any federal income taxes. However, mainly due to the failure to index the AMT for inflation in 1981 when the regular income tax was indexed, the reach of the AMT has expanded over time to hit middle-income people it was never intended to tax, says Veronique de Rugy, a senior research fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. As a result, the AMT impacts a growing share of the population.

According to the Congressional Budget Office, last tax season 4.5 million taxpayers were affected by the alternative minimum tax, an increase of over 4 million taxpayers since 1970. Until 2000, less than 1 percent of taxpayers paid the AMT in any given year; by 2008, 3 percent of taxpayers were subject to the AMT.

This stands in sharp contradiction with the original purpose of the AMT, which was to prevent 155 millionaires from using deductions and credits to avoid paying any federal income tax. Nearly half of all states pay less than 0.7 percent of total AMT revenues each, but in California taxpayers who paid the AMT made up 22 percent of total AMT revenues, while 15.5 percent of AMT revenues came from New York, 7 percent from New Jersey and 3.5 percent from Massachusetts.

The bottom line is that the AMT hits people in some states harder than others, says de Rugy.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Ethanol's Biggest Accomplishment : Third World Starvation

Even the UN hates Ethanol? That's hard to believe. The real question is where are the environmentalists on this issue? You know, all those demanding we save the planet by using only wind, solar or bio fuels to energize our economy while most of the world is starving to death.

Starve the planet and reduce the carbon foot print with dead bodies.

Oh wait, it's not really about saving the planet is it, it's about power and control. It's about getting rich on the backs of others.

Biofuel Subsidies Cause Agricultural Price Shocks
Source: "Even the U.N. Hates Ethanol," Wall Street Journal, June 14, 2011.

A new study, requested by G-20 leaders last November, fingers biofuel subsidies as among the leading causes of agricultural price shocks. According to the report, "between 2000 and 2009, global output of bioethanol quadrupled and production of biodiesel increased tenfold," a spike which "has been largely driven by government support policies."

The report cites forecasts suggesting that the price of coarse grains could increase as much as 13 percent, oilseeds by 7 percent and vegetable oil 35 percent on average each year between 2013 and 2017, says the Wall Street Journal.

As farmers respond to artificially high prices for biofuels, farmland is diverted from crops like wheat that people consume to the feedstocks for inefficient energy production. Biofuel production now absorbs 20 percent of the world's sugar cane, 9 percent of oilseeds and coarse grains, and 4 percent of sugar beets -- and more than 40 percent of U.S. corn production.

As food prices rise, both the quantity and the quality of food available to consumers in the developing world have decreased, says the study. The report's recommendation is clear: G-20 governments should "remove provisions of current national policies that subsidize (or mandate) biofuels production or consumption."

Monday, June 20, 2011

Medicare Bought AND Paid for With Cash?

The concept of having the individual take responsibility for their personal health care expenditures sound like a good idea, but the problem that might arise for a lot of people that will require financial help are among the 'dependent' for everything the need, which means they don't have a good sense of proportion when it comes to spending money.

Will the 'dependent' and or needy actually make good decisions when it come to their health care remains the burning question?

Can Medicare Save Money by Giving Patients Cash?
Source: Peter Suderman, "Spend More, Save More," Reason Magazine, June 16, 2011.

With major changes to the Medicare program tied up in political gridlock, health wonks are on the hunt for innovative ways to lower spending. Lorens Helmchen, a professor at George Mason University's Department of Health Administration and Policy, has proposed a novel method of constraining the program's spending: He thinks the program may be able to save money by spending money -- specifically by giving cash to patients who make more cost-effective choices, says Peter Suderman, an associate editor at Reason Magazine.

The basic idea, dubbed cash-for-care, is as simple as a year-end performance bonus.
When faced with two treatments of roughly equal efficacy but dramatically different cost, Medicare would pay patients a cash fee if they chose the less expensive option. The idea is a form of shared savings.

But where most shared savings plans share exclusively with health care providers, Cash for Care shares it with patients. Greater utilization of lower-cost treatments could be a vehicle for savings. But many doctors are reticent to factor cost into their treatment decisions, says Suderman.

So-called shared-savings programs give providers an incentive to provide less care overall, and to only steer patients toward the cheapest treatments. But the underlying idea -- giving patients financial incentives to make wise health care decisions -- isn't new.

According to Devon Herrick, a senior fellow and health care expert at the National Center for Policy Analysis, Cash for Care is "definitely trying to harness the same type of incentives as consumer-driven health care plans," which typically pair high-deductible insurance with health savings accounts.

Under those plans, patients have a financial stake in their care decisions and can save money depending on what sort of care they choose.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Social Security Cuts Since 1983

Social Security is running on empty, and what is amazing, most of those receiving benefits now have no idea where the money is coming from and don't care as long as they get theirs.

It seems a lot of the loudest protests center on the fear of not having a continuing unchanged flow of funds to themselves rather than looking at the big picture. And the big picture is if we don't cut back now, there will be no future funds at all.

This concept is totally incomprehensibly to the dependent classes.

Have Social Security Benefits Really Been Cut by 19 Percent?
Source: Andrew Biggs, "Have Social Security Benefits Really Been Cut by 19 Percent?" American Enterprise Institute, June 8, 2011.

Based on changes implemented in the 1983 Social Security reforms -- increases in the normal retirement age from 65 to 67; a one-time reduction in cost-of-living adjustment payments; and the taxation of retirement benefits -- future retirees will receive benefits 19 percent lower than what they would have received had the 1983 reforms not been implemented. This is according to a recent issue brief by the National Academy of Social Insurance titled, "Social Security Beneficiaries Face 19% Cut; New Revenue Can Restore Balance," says Andrew Biggs, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. Some perspective is needed, says Biggs.

First, the 1983 reforms didn't only reduce benefits; they also increased taxes, by covering newly hired federal workers and non-profit associations, accelerating tax increases already on the books, prohibiting state/local workers from leaving the system, and so on.

Second, while benefits in any given month will be lower in the future than they would have been under 1983 rules, that doesn't mean they'd be lower in real terms.

Third, future retirees will live longer than those in the past did, so while they may receive somewhat lower replacement rates than in the past, they'll collect them over longer retirements.
You could argue that people would want the same replacement rate even over longer retirements, meaning that these almost four extra years of collecting benefits shouldn't factor in. Fine. But the life-cycle theory of consumption says that as life expectancies increase, people will tend to target lower replacement rates relative to preretirement earnings.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Health Insurance DOESN'T Mean Accessiblity

Insurance programs that are targeted by government harm the public more than they help. This study shows just how the medial field views government intrusion. The problem can only get worse if 'single payer' becomes the law.

Accessibility has to be paramount to good health care. If care is denied because of government insanity, cost restrictions, everyone will suffer. To deny free market solutions is to deny reality.

If for no other reason in 2012, vote out the progressives in congress so ObamaCare can be stopped before our health care system is destroyed.

Health Insurance Doesn't Mean Access to Health Care
Source: Joanna Bisgaier and Karin V. Rhodes, "Auditing Access to Specialty Care for Children with Public Insurance," New England Journal of Medicine, June 15, 2011.

Expansions of Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) are designed to extend access to high-quality medical care to all U.S. children. However, evidence suggests that the 37 million children covered by Medicaid-CHIP are less likely to receive specialty care than children covered by commercial insurance, say Joanna Bisgaier, M.S.W., and Karin V. Rhodes, M.D.

Children covered by Medicaid-CHIP may face greater barriers to specialist care as a result of fewer resources within their families, including lower levels of income, education, language proficiency and health literacy.

Another possible explanation for disparities is that specialists choose not to accept public insurance.

With the use of an experimental study design involving simulated requests for specialty care, Bisgaier and Rhodes measured real-world scheduling behavior in an urban area with a high density of medical specialists. The results showed significant disparities in children's access to needed outpatient specialty care, attributable to specialists' reluctance to accept public health insurance; these results held across all audited specialties.

Moreover, even when children with Medicaid-CHIP were not denied appointments outright, the appointments were, on average, 22 days later than those obtained for privately insured children with identical health conditions. Notably, even callers claiming to have a privately insured child faced an average wait time of 20 days when urgently requesting an appointment.

These findings signal a need to consider refining specialty care delivery processes to more efficiently use the specialist workforce, say Bisgaier and Rhodes.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

EPA Regulation Designed to Kill Economic Growth

Cap and Trade failed to pass muster in congress. But just when you thought it was safe to breath again, here comes the EPA with new regulations that will kill coal fired electrical generation plants.

The new progressives are using the EPA to get what they couldn't get legitimately and that is total destruction of fossil fuel electrical generation.

The progressives, liberal Democrats, really don't need congress to get what they want when all they need is one person, in the right department, The EPA, to design regulations to stop economic growth. This person is appointed as well, not elected by the people.

We receive over 55% of our electricity from these coal fired plants. Is it any wonder why our rates will go up by more than 60% in the next few years? How do you think this will set with people on fixed incomes? The poor?

Progressive liberal Democrats certainly cannot be from around here, and certainly don't believe in the American dream of individual freedom and self determination.

Consumers Likely to See Higher Electricity Bills under New Regulations
Source: Julie Wernau, "Consumers' Electric Bills Likely to Spike as Coal Plants Close," Chicago Tribune, June 11, 2011.

Consumers could see their electricity bills jump an estimated 40 to 60 percent in the next few years. The reason: Pending environmental regulations will make coal-fired generating plants, which produce about half the nation's electricity, more expensive to operate. Many are expected to be shuttered, says the Chicago Tribune.

The increases are expected to begin to appear in 2014, and policymakers already are scrambling to find cheap and reliable alternative power sources. If they are unsuccessful, consumers can expect further increases as more expensive forms of generation take on a greater share of the electricity load.

Exactly how much bills will go up is unclear.

What analysts know is that a portion of ComEd bills that pays electricity generators to reserve a portion of their power three years into the future will increase more than fourfold.
That would translate into increases of $107 to $178 a year for an average residential customer in ComEd's territory (Chicago and most of northern Illinois), starting in 2014.

In 2014 those so-called capacity costs are expected to add approximately $2.7 million over the previous year to electricity bills in Chicago Public Schools, $3.3 million for the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District and $5.4 million to the city of Chicago.

Coal-fired plants historically have been one of the cheapest ways to generate electricity, but operating costs are expected to increase significantly because of upgrades needed on older plants to meet new environmental regulations. The Illinois Power Agency estimates that by 2017 the energy portion of bills could jump 65 percent from today's rates, says the Tribune.

Marriage Explained After 60 Years

Married life is just the best way to understand humanity and just what your place is in the larger scheme of things.

The Old Man and Satan

People were in their pews talking at church. Suddenly, Satan appeared at the altar. Everyone started screaming and running for the entrance,trampling each other in a frantic effort to get away from evil incarnate.

Soon everyone had exited the church except for one elderly gentlemanwho sat calmly in his pew without moving, seeming oblivious to the fact that God's ultimate enemy was in his presence. So Satan walked up to the old man and said, 'Don't you know who I am?

The man replied, 'Yep, sure do. ''Aren't you afraid of me?' Satan asked. 'Nope, sure ain't.' said the man.

'Don't you realize I can kill with a word?' asked Satan. 'Don't doubt it for a minute,' returned the old man, in an even tone.

'Did you know that I could cause you profound horrifying, AGONY for all eternity?' persisted Satan? 'Yep,' was the calm reply.

'And you're still not afraid?' asked Satan.'Nope,' said the old man.

More than a little perturbed, Satan asked, 'Well, why aren't you afraid of me?'

The man calmly replied, 'Been married to your sister for 60 years.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Hydrqulic Facturing Releasing Huge New Reserves of Oil and Gas

Environmentalist see this new technology as a 'dagger' in their hearts - if this really takes hold, the eco fascists dream of bring America to her knees and forcing the public to live like it was in 1850, will come to an end. The environmentalists march to crush the American dream of a better life will come to a halt.

This is unacceptable to the eco nutjobs insane agenda that lives to control all aspects of our lives. Along with the progressive liberals in congress and their media boot licks, the attacks will come fast and furious to stop all hydraulic fracturing to obtain huge new sources of oil and gas.

If we can't live with wind and solar energy sources, then we have to die trying.

America Needs the Shale Revolution
The drilling boom is the best U.S. energy news in generations and is crucial for reviving domestic manufacturing.

The U.S. is on the verge of an industrial renaissance if—and it's a big if—policy makers don't foul it up by restricting the ability of drillers to use the technology that's making a renaissance possible: hydraulic fracturing.

The shale drilling boom now underway in Texas, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, Oklahoma and other states is already creating jobs, slashing natural-gas prices, and spurring billions of dollars of investment in new production capacity for critical commodities like steel and petrochemicals. Better yet, it's spurring a huge increase in domestic oil production, which has been falling steadily since the 1970s.

Despite the myriad benefits of the low-cost hydrocarbons that are now being produced thanks to hydraulic fracturing, the media, environmental groups and politicians are hyping the possible dangers of the process, which uses high-pressure pumps to force water, sand and chemicals into shale formations. Doing so fractures the formation and allows the extraction of natural gas or petroleum.

Although hydraulic fracturing has been used more than one million times in the U.S. over the past 60 years, environmental activists are hoping to ban the process or have it regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Opponents claim the process can harm groundwater even though drinking-water aquifers are separated by as much as two miles of impermeable rock from the shales that are being targeted by the fracturing process.

New York currently has a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing. On May 31, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman sued several federal agencies, claiming they had not done a proper environmental assessment on the possible effects of drilling in the New York City watershed. On June 6, the New York Assembly passed a bill that will ban all forms of hydraulic fracturing in the state until mid-2012. And the EPA has launched "a comprehensive research study" on the possible "adverse impact that hydraulic fracturing may have on water quality and public health" nationwide.
David Klein

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Democrats Fear Success by Republicans : Attack/Attack/Attack!

This is what Democracy looks like : the people elected who they thought will do the best job for everyone. The people have spoken through the democratic process. Why is this wrong?

The Democrats are afraid the Republicans will actually do what they said they would do during the election process. As it turns out, this is a true statement. The Republicans are moving forward on all fronts to save the state from collapse.

The Democrats are furious about this, as they are responsible for the mess we are in now, so they attack every aspect of the Republican program hoping to derail it or stop it completely by any means possible. Lawful or unlawful. The ends justifies the means.

(author unknown)
Let Republicans do their jobs
Well, here we go again. The Democrats can't win through the legislative process, so they have to use the courts. Why are they so upset? Is it because they lost control through the last elections? Is it because they can't deliver on their promise to protect the unions? When we look at all that's happening, we can see the real reason for their panic is survival.

Yes, that's it, survival. Think about this for a moment. The Democrats have been in complete control for years. They've been telling us that their policies are right and the other guys are wrong. They've had total freedom to push their agenda and have things their way, while watching the opposition sit helplessly on the sidelines waiting their turn.

Well, their turn has come. Voters in Wisconsin voted to make a change. We decided to let the other guys show us what they can do. They promised to balance the budget by cutting spending and by bringing common sense back to government. So why won't the Democrats let them do what we elected them to do?

The answer again is, their very survival. If the Republicans are able to advance their agenda and accomplish the goals they've set, which we agreed upon when we elected them, it will mean that Republicans will continue to get elected in the future. Which means it may be a very long time before the Democrats ever get control again. And that's what scares them.

They can't afford to let the Republicans have any success, because they know that if they do, they're done. If Democrats really think Republican ideas are that bad, then why don't they sit back and let them happen. Then they would be able to say to the voters in the next election that we were wrong, we should have kept them in there.

Again, the very reason they can't let that happen is because they know the people of Wisconsin are tired of their failed tax-and-spend policies and their liberal agenda. Any success by the Republicans simply would devastate the Democrats. Only through causing our people to fail can you guys survive.

We chose to elect those who have the courage and integrity to do what is right. We should always have a budget that is in balance. The state doesn't have any money. Those are our tax dollars you guys are spending. We should always have representatives that are responsible to the electorate. We will decide in the next election who we want. It may be you, it may be them, but that's a choice for us to make. We elected the Republicans, now let them do their job.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Auto Bailout Result : Billions Lost to Taxpayers

Here again, the Obama administration tells us one thing, but reality turns out to be something completely different.

Conventional wisdom says we should never have believed Obama in the first place when he said the auto companies going under, filing for bankruptcy, would destroy our economy, let alone now after the fact, as he spins the nightmare of how the bailout resulted in billions lost to taxpayers. What he really meant was the unions would be destroyed and therefore Obama would lose tens of millions in campaign donations.

As it turned out, the entire bailout was only to save the unions as we saw them get 55% of the GM and the stock holders get 16%. Truly, Marx is alive and well.

This is just one more, among many, attempts to grab control of America's industry through misinformation and gross abuse of unconstitutional power to grow the power of the federal government. As Obama has said on many occasions, rhetoric is just words we use to persuade and turn a conversation or situation to one's advantage. A tactic used by this administration every day to divert everyone from the nightmare coming our way.

Taxpayers Face Multibillion Dollar Loss from Auto Bailouts
Source: David Skeel, "The Real Cost of the Auto Bailouts," Wall Street Journal, June 6, 2011.

In late 2008, then-Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson tapped the $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Fund to lend more than $17 billion to General Motors (GM) and Chrysler. Under the strategy that was chosen, each of the companies was required to file for bankruptcy as a condition of receiving additional funding. Rather than undergo a restructuring under ordinary bankruptcy rules, however, each corporation pretended to "sell" its assets to a new entity that was set up for the purposes of the sale, says David Skeel, a professor of law at the University of Pennsylvania.

With Chrysler, the new entity paid $2 billion, which went to Chrysler's senior lenders, giving them a small portion of the $6.9 billion they were owed. If other bidders were given a legitimate opportunity to top the $2 billion of government money on offer, this might have been a legitimate transaction. But they weren't, says Skeel.

A bid wouldn't count as "qualified" unless it had the same strings as the government bid -- a sizeable payment to union retirees and full payment of trade debt. If a bidder wanted to offer $2.5 billion for Chrysler's Jeep division, he was out of luck.

With General Motors, senior creditors didn't get trampled in the same way.
But the "sale," which left the government with 61 percent of GM's stock, was even more of a sham.

The claim that the bailouts were done at little cost is even more dubious. Taxpayers are still likely to end up with a multibillion dollar bill -- nearly $14 billion, according to current White House estimates. But the $14 billion figure omits the cost of the previously accumulated tax losses GM can apply against future profits, thanks to a special post-bailout government gift, says Skeel.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Green Energy Decimates Land Mass Enviroment

Hello green energy - why is it that the environmentalists don't have too much to say about the huge land mass that is required for solar and wind energy, but demand that oil drilling that requires little or no land mass has to be stopped to save a lizard habitat in Texas and Nevada?

Yeah, I know, it all about feeling good about ones self and saving the planet. That we freeze in the winter or roast in the summer, that our economy tanks and millions are unemployed, has little or no impact on the eco fascists. They are well funded by tax dollars and living in luxury, so they see no harm in demanded we change our way of living to suit their fantasy of the 'new America', an America like it was in 1850. Hey, wants the problem with that?

Renewable Energy Sources Require Vast Amounts of Natural Resources
Source: Robert Bryce, "The Gas Is Greener," New York Times, June 7, 2011.

In April, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law an ambitious mandate that requires the state to obtain one-third of its electricity from renewable energy sources by 2020. Twenty-nine states and the District of Columbia now have renewable electricity mandates, and there is also support at the federal level, says Robert Bryce, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute.
But while energy sources like sunlight and wind are free and naturally replenished, converting them into large quantities of electricity requires vast amounts of natural resources -- most notably, land. Consider California's new mandate.

The state's peak electricity demand is about 52,000 megawatts. Meeting the one-third target will require (if you oversimplify a bit) about 17,000 megawatts of renewable energy capacity.
Let's assume that California will get half of that capacity from solar and half from wind. Most of its large-scale solar electricity production will presumably come from projects like the $2 billion Ivanpah solar plant, which is now under construction in the Mojave Desert in southern California. When completed, Ivanpah, which aims to provide 370 megawatts of solar generation capacity, will cover 3,600 acres -- about five and a half square miles.

The math is simple: to have 8,500 megawatts of solar capacity, California would need at least 23 projects the size of Ivanpah, covering about 129 square miles, an area more than five times as large as Manhattan.

While there's plenty of land, projects as big as Ivanpah raise environmental concerns.
In April, the federal Bureau of Land Management ordered a halt to construction on part of the facility out of concern for the desert tortoise, which is protected under the Endangered Species Act.

Wind energy projects require even more land -- the Roscoe wind farm in Texas, which has a capacity of 781.5 megawatts, covers about 154 square miles.
In the rush to do something -- anything -- to deal with the problem of greenhouse gas emissions, environmental groups and policymakers have determined that renewable energy is the answer. But all energy and power systems exact a toll, says Bryce.

Thursday, June 09, 2011

States Pursue Constitutional Rights

This is good stuff - the people are waking up to the power grab by the federal government. The people have decided that it's time to take back the freedom to control their personal lives and the lives of the next generations that is promised to us in the Constitution.

Thank you Obama and the progressive Democrats!

Restoring the Balance of Power between States and the Federal Government
Source: Nick Dranias, "Federalism DIY: 10 Ways for States to Check and Balance Washington," Goldwater Institute, June 1, 2011.

The federal government is tightening its control over the 50 states and the lives of every American. The U.S. Constitution, however, says states are supposed to be equal partners with the federal government. State sovereignty -- allowing each state to control its own affairs -- is the cornerstone of that equal partnership and critical to protecting Americans' freedom, says Nick Dranias, director of the Joseph and Dorothy Donnelly Moller Center for Constitutional Government at the Goldwater Institute.

Below are 10 ways local policymakers and citizens can restore that balance of power and do what's best for the people of their state.

Legislation plus litigation: States can enact laws that protect individual liberty and take the federal government to court to defend those laws.

Taxpayer courts that authorize taxpayers to bring lawsuits in state court to stop state and federal government from using tax dollars in ways that violate the Constitution.

Expand civil rights laws to protect the constitutional right to state sovereignty, thus allowing individuals to sue state and federal government when they disregard this right.

Create constitutional defense councils that have the authority and funding to defend state sovereignty in court.

Coordination: State and local governments can limit the impact of new federal regulations by requiring federal agencies to coordinate with existing local laws, regulations, plans and policies.

Reinvigorate the reserved powers of the states by passing laws that force the federal government to illegally commandeer state officials in order to enforce federal laws that upset the balance of power between the states and Washington.

Empower the people by repealing laws that infringe upon individual rights.

Refuse conditional grants.

Amend the U.S. Constitution to limit the federal government by proposing amendments that would limit the size, scope and intrusiveness of the federal government.
Create interstate compacts.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Gov. Policy : Taking More From Fewer

As government grows, the private sector shrinks. The term 'getting blood from a turnip' plays out here in that just so much can be squeezed from the public before we all notice the sky is truly fall on our heads. But by then it's too late to cover out heads as we run for cover.

Chicken Little was right, we just didn't notice the timing was off.

Government Spending Affects Gross Domestic Product
Source: Veronique de Rugy, "Ugly Modeling," Reason Magazine, June 2011.

In February, the Goldman Sachs economist Alec Phillips predicted that a Republican proposal in the House of Representatives to cut $61 billion from the federal budget in fiscal year 2011 would, if enacted, shave two full percentage points off America's gross domestic product (GDP) in the second and third quarters of this year. The logic behind this, as with similar analyses by Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke and Moody's Analytics chief economist Mark Zandi, is that government spending cuts reduce overall demand in the economy, which affects growth and then employment.

But this argument ignores the fact that the government has to take its money out of the economy by raising taxes, borrowing from investors or printing dollars. Each of these options can shrink the economy, says Veronique de Rugy, a senior research fellow at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University.

All these analysts also systematically ignore the fact that GDP numbers include government spending. When the federal government pumps trillions of dollars into the economy, it looks as if GDP is growing. When government cuts spending -- even cuts within the most inefficient programs -- aggregate GDP shrinks. But that's misleading.

If Washington spends $1 a year on a bureaucrat's salary, for example, GDP numbers will register growth of exactly $1, whether or not the employee has produced any value for that money. By contrast, if a firm pays an engineer $1, that $1 only shows up in the GDP if the engineer produces $1 worth of stuff to sell.

This distinction biases GDP numbers -- and the policies based on them -- toward ever-increasing government spending. Furthermore, GDP does not capture changes in personal investment portfolios or changes in private research and development spending.

We have tried spending a lot of money to jumpstart the economy, and it has failed. Now we need to cut spending and lift the uncertainty paralyzing economic activity. That approach will not just be more fiscally responsible. It will also empower individuals and entrepreneurs, and they are the only ones who can bring on a real recovery, says Rugy.

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Fossil Fuel for Another 150 Years : Fracking!

This story is only the latest test of history, this information, that we have much more fossil fuel than anyone thought, has been on going for the last decade at least. The problem was the eco fascists and the liberal progressives politicians had other ideas.

The agendas for "fundamentally changing America" was the bases for shutting down oil production and forcing everyone to live a life without the benefit of our most available resource. In other words, we have to live a life as it was 100 years ago. There idea was, 'it's the right thing to do'. Stop America's advance and influence in the world.

The only difference in this scenario, of course, will be that our esteem leaders will all have the benefit of fossil fuels so the can lead properly, we, on the other hand, must live without. Again this isn't new, history is being replayed.

Everything You've Heard about Fossil Fuels May Be Wrong
Source: Michael Lind, "Everything You've Heard about Fossil Fuels May Be Wrong," Salon.com, May 31, 2011.

In the last decade the technique of hydraulic fracturing or "fracking," long used in the oil industry, has evolved to permit energy companies to access reserves of previously-unrecoverable "shale gas," or unconventional natural gas.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, these advances mean there is at least six times as much recoverable natural gas today as there was a decade ago, says Michael Lind, policy director of the Economic Growth Program at the New America Foundation.
The implications for energy security are startling. And natural gas may be only the beginning.
Fracking also permits the extraction of previously-unrecoverable "tight oil," thereby postponing the day when the world runs out of petroleum.

If gas hydrates as well as shale gas, tight oil, oil sands and other unconventional sources can be tapped at reasonable cost, then the global energy picture looks radically different than it did only a few years ago.

Suddenly it appears that there may be enough accessible hydrocarbons to power industrial civilization for centuries, if not millennia, to come.

In the meantime, it appears that the prophets of an age of renewable energy got things backwards. We may be living in the era of "Peak Renewables," which will be followed by a very long age of fossil fuels that has only just begun, says Lind.

Monday, June 06, 2011

Jews STILL Support Obama's Agenda?

Just why do Jews hold the views they do and how many are really Jews? With Obama giving the world his stand on Israel, a nonsupporting view, Palestinians have the right to Israel's land, do the Jews still believe Obama is best for America?

Is it possible that 82% of the Jewish community in this country would say or do nothing if Israel is attacked and Obama did nothing? How does this happen?

Sabato Website: Jews Won’t Abandon Obama in 2012
(From NewsMax)

President Barack Obama’s recent speech calling on Israel to accept the country’s 1967 borders as a starting point for talks with the Palestinians has raised speculation that Jewish voters could turn against Obama and the Democrats in 2012. But such a scenario “is not very realistic for at least three reasons,” according to Alan I. Abramowitz, senior columnist for the Crystal Ball website of Larry Sabato, director of the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics.

First of all, political opponents — in particular, Hillary Clinton’s campaign — questioned Obama’s commitment to Israel in 2008. But Jewish voters still supported Obama in the general election at about the same rate they had supported other Democratic presidential candidates in recent elections. One poll showed that 78 percent of Jewish voters cast their ballots for Obama over John McCain.

Secondly, Jewish loyalty to the Democrats is based largely on the liberal views of most Jews on domestic policy issues, Abramowitz asserts.

Between 1992 and 2008, 82 percent of Jewish voters interviewed in several surveys said they leaned toward the Democratic Party, compared to just 43 percent of all other white voters.
Jewish voters “hold solidly liberal views on a wide range of domestic policy issues, and especially on social issues such as abortion, that have undermined support for the Democratic Party among some of its traditional supporters,” Abramowitz writes.

Thirdly, the rightward tack of the Republican Party in recent years has made a significant shift of Jewish voters into the GOP camp highly unlikely. Moderate-to-liberal Republicans including Nelson Rockefeller in New York and Edward Brooke in Massachusetts regularly won a large share of the Jewish vote, but in today’s GOP “there are almost no liberals or moderates,” Abramowitz observes.

He concludes: “There is almost no chance that the ultimate victor in the Republican nomination contest will be able to significantly increase the GOP share of the Jewish vote beyond the relatively small minority of conservative Jews who have been voting for Republican candidates in recent years.”

Limbaugh on Krauthammer

(This from NewsMax)

Rush Limbaugh thinks he knows why conservative pundit Charles Krauthammer “commands respect” in the media.
“Krauthammer in many ways has acquired this respect because in many of the venues he appears he is the only conservative,” Rush told his radio listeners on Thursday.
Krauthammer regularly appears on the syndicated show “Inside Washington” on Friday nights and also on Fox News Channel’s “Special Report.”
“They surround him with a number of libs on the show so he’s unique in that sense,” Limbaugh said.
“I don’t think he’s earned the respect simply because he’s a truth-teller. It’s because he always managed to position himself on these shows as the lone conservative like George Will has done. People are drawn to that.”

Saturday, June 04, 2011

Fantasy or Reality : Madison Wis

Reflecting on the situation in Madison, Wisconsin, one has to believe this city is like none other, in that it is a closed society. You have to have no bases for reality to exit here. Everything is a fantasy, nothing is real. Even Madison's new mayor is a former SDS student. These people live in the past and dream of more of the same.

Given Madison's involvement, a controlled riot, now at the capital as Gov. Walker is trying again to control the debt problem, the last confrontation costing taxpayers millions, and now to start all over again, one has to wonder just what kind of future there is for this city with so many here believing no matter what they do or say, there will always be more of everything just for the taking.

Friday, June 03, 2011

Progressives Promise Prosperity by Dependency

Better safe than sorry is just another way to say 'don't worry, we'll take care of you' - all you have to do vote for us and we promise to make you safe and healthy.

This is the agenda of the modern progressives. The liberal Democrats. It's the new 'normal' for America - dependency.

Should "Better Safe than Sorry" Guide Our Public Policy?
Source: Jonathan Adler, "The Problems with Precaution: A Principle without Principle," The American, May 25, 2011.

It's better to be safe than sorry. We all accept this as a commonsense maxim. But can it also guide public policy? Advocates of the precautionary principle think so, and argue that formalizing a more "precautionary" approach to public health and environmental protection will better safeguard human well-being and the world around us. If only it were that easy, says Jonathan Adler, a professor and director of the Center for Business Law and Regulation at Case Western Reserve University School of Law.

Simply put, the precautionary principle is not a sound basis for public policy. At the broadest level of generality, the principle is unobjectionable, but it provides no meaningful guidance to pressing policy questions. In a public policy context, "better safe than sorry" is a fairly vacuous instruction.

Taken literally, the precautionary principle is either wholly arbitrary or incoherent. In its stronger formulations, the principle actually has the potential to do harm. Efforts to operationalize the precautionary principle into public law will do little to enhance the protection of public health and the environment. The precautionary principle could even do more harm than good.

Efforts to impose the principle through regulatory policy inevitably accommodate competing concerns or become a Trojan horse for other ideological crusades. When selectively applied to politically disfavored technologies and conduct, the precautionary principle is a barrier to technological development and economic growth.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

College Degrees Mean Access NOT Reward

Interesting. This is interesting in that so many that get undergraduate degrees, especially in liberal arts, believe they deserve better money than they are getting even though they didn't do anything exceptional in college to earn it.

So many people, at all levels of employment, believe all they have to do to earn a living is just show up. If management demands more than I'm willing to produce, I'm being picked on. It's not fair.

This happens all the time.

The Economic Value of College Majors
Source: Anthony P. Carnevale, Jeff Strohl and Michelle Melton, "What's it Worth? The Economic Value of College Majors," Georgetown University, May 24, 2011.

On average, bachelor's degrees pay off. But a new study confirms that some undergraduate majors pay off a lot more than others. In fact, the difference in earnings potential between one major and another can be more than 300 percent, says Georgetown University's Center on

Education and the Workforce.

While there is a lot of variation in earnings over a lifetime, the authors find that all undergraduate majors are "worth it," even taking into account the cost of college and lost earnings. However, the lifetime advantage ranges from $1,090,000 for engineering majors to $241,000 for education majors.

The top 10 majors with the highest median earnings are: petroleum engineer ($120,000); pharmacy/pharmaceutical sciences and administration ($105,000); mathematics and computer sciences ($98,000); aerospace engineering ($87,000); chemical engineering ($86,000); electrical engineering ($85,000); naval architecture and marine engineering ($82,000); mechanical engineering, metallurgical engineering, and mining and mineral engineering (each with median earnings of $80,000).

The 10 majors with the lowest median earnings are: counseling/psychology ($29,000); early childhood education ($36,000); theology and religious vocations ($38,000); human services and community organizations ($38,000); social work ($39,000); drama and theater arts, studio arts, communication disorders sciences and services, visual and performing arts, and health and medical preparatory programs (each at $40,000).

Liberal arts and humanities majors end up in the middle of the pack in terms of earnings and employment. They are the third most popular major group, and earn median incomes of $47,000. Moreover, about 40 percent of people with these majors obtain a graduate degree, reaping a return of almost 50 percent. Liberal arts and humanities majors generally fare well in the workforce, ending up in professional, white-collar and education occupations.

As to the question of graduate degrees, the report reveals that obtaining a graduate-level degree does lead to higher earnings, but how much in additional earnings is also driven by what you study. The highest earnings bump in graduate degrees can be found in the areas related to health care and biology.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

EPA New Regulations on Energy : Progressive Overstep

The EPA is a monster that is consuming our very existences - This is just crazy. Rules and regulations that were just put into place a few years ago, and complied with by the power companies, are now not good enough.

Now one person, Lisa Jackson, has determined everyone in the country must suffer life style changes and expend billions of dollars to meet her idea of what America should do to have clean air and water. Little wonder the race is on to eliminate the EPA, as founded by Lisa Jackson, before she, single handily, drives the country into poverty.

EPA Mercury Rules Unnecessary
Source: Willie Soon and Paul Driessen, "The Myth of Killer Mercury," Wall Street Journal, May 25, 2011.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently issued 946 pages of new rules requiring that U.S. power plants sharply reduce their emissions of mercury and other air pollutants. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson claims that while the regulations will cost electricity producers $10.9 billion annually, they will save 17,000 lives and generate up to $140 billion in health benefits.

There is no factual basis for these assertions, say Willie Soon, a natural scientist at Harvard, and Paul Driessen, a senior policy adviser for the Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow.

How do America's coal-burning power plants fit into the picture? They emit an estimated 41-48 tons of mercury per year. But U.S. forest fires emit at least 44 tons per year; cremation of human remains discharges 26 tons; Chinese power plants eject 400 tons; and volcanoes, subsea vents, geysers and other sources spew out 9,000-10,000 additional tons per year.

All these emissions enter the global atmospheric system and become part of the U.S. air mass.
Since our power plants account for less than 0.5 percent of all the mercury in the air we breathe, eliminating every milligram of it will do nothing about the other 99.5 percent in our atmosphere.

In the face of these minuscule risks, the EPA nevertheless demands that utility companies spend billions every year retrofitting coal-fired power plants that produce half of all U.S. electricity.

Electric Car Battery Charging? No Wind No Charge

One other thing that worries consumers is how long will it take to charge the battery on the car if the wind isn't blowing or the they want to charge their battery at night!!??

Americans Balk at All-Electric Cars
Source: James R. Healey, "Americans Say 'No' to Electrics despite High Gas Prices," USA Today, May 25, 2011.

Nearly six of 10 Americans -- 57 percent -- say they won't buy an all-electric car no matter the price of gas. That is a stiff headwind just as automakers are developing electrics to help meet tighter federal rules that could require their fleets to average as high as 62 miles per gallon in 2025, says USA Today.

The anti-electric sentiment unmasked by the poll shows that pure electrics -- defined in the poll question as "an electric car that you could only drive for a limited number of miles at one time" -- could have trouble getting a foothold in the United States.

Such cars "are very much niche vehicles. They find acceptance among a core group of passionistas, but too many questions remain for mainstream consumers," says Edmunds.com CEO Jeremy Anwyl.

He says consumers worry about range per charge, recharge time and battery replacement cost.
Electrics also are priced thousands of dollars more than similar gasoline cars.