By on May 13, 2016

2015 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel HFE, Image: FCA

You know the world is a bit upside-down when master wordsmith Jack Baruth spins a web so tight in favor of the EPA and CARB that even the Best and Brightest can’t see through it.

Jack makes a valid point today: light-duty trucks, especially those of the diesel variety, are often driven by people who don’t need the capability that those trucks provide. It’s those diesel pickups that spew tons of particulates and NOx into the atmosphere, both of which are harmful to human health. Goodbye, he says to the light-duty diesel truck, before we turn into Europe. Turbo-fed gasoline engines offer just as much torque as their diesel-powered brethren, he exclaims. There’s no need to buy an $80,000 phallus extender. What do you think of this twin-turbo V6 Raptor?

However, Mr. Baruth stopped just short of saying recreational use of light-duty diesel trucks should be outright banned, instead offering up a solution that’s analogous to gun control.

Let’s step back for a moment.

Yes, diesel is “dirtier” than gas. It may have gotten cleaner over the years, and by a fabulous degree, but it still creates pollutants entirely unique to diesel fuel itself.

Jack’s solution is simple: make it so difficult for people to acquire a tool that burns the fuel in question, diesel pickups in this case, that issues with burning diesel fuel are negated. Yet, he wants you to completely forget that light-duty trucks aren’t the only vehicles burning diesel fuel in America.

For starters, we have the other end of the truck spectrum: medium- and heavy-duty trucks. They come in many shapes and sizes, built for different purposes, and — depending on age — they emit varying levels of toxins that threaten public health. Common sense says the older the truck’s age, the more it pollutes. And, good or bad, these trucks are built to last.

According to IHS Automotive (via FleetDriver), “the average age for Class 4-8 vehicles was 12.5 years in 2007, that figure now stands at 14.7 years.” Of particular interest is the average age of Class 6 trucks — such as the GMC Top Kick and Ford F-650 — which is the class that does the most inner city travel in areas where smog is a serious concern. Those trucks had an average age of 20.9 years as of 2014. If you make them burn fuel in a cleaner manner today, you likely won’t see real benefits of that change before Mr. Baruth starts thinking about filing for social security.

Then there are industrial automotive vehicles, such as the ones you find in open-pit mines. And diesel-powered generators of all kinds, from those that produce electricity when the power goes out to, well, actual power stations.

Oh, and if you live in a northern clime, away from modern natural gas delivery infrastructure, chances are you’re burning diesel, too — home heating fuel is just a different color and is delivered to your door at a fraction of the cost of road diesel.

So, let’s get real: light-duty pickups driven by flat-brim hatted people are part of the problem, but the problem begins with the fuel itself.

Or, to put it another way, it’s not bro-dozers that kill people, it’s the fuel that goes in the bro-dozers that kills people.

If you give a man an unloaded gun and that man cannot find a source of ammunition, the man and the gun together are as harmful as the same man wielding a rock. The last time I checked, there are many rocks that can be picked up by humans in America, but not many people are stoned to death in America’s civilized society.

The same logic that applies to ammunition should, to a degree, also apply to vehicles that use diesel fuel: control the supply of the fuel itself and you can minimize its harm.

We can have a long, philosophical discussion about how regulation kills business and hampers the economy. We can also have a long, philosophical discussion about how regulation has saved millions of human lives over the years. Whatever you think of Darwinism, ensuring the continued existence of our species is generally a good idea.

As a parallel, the weed killer RoundUp is now illegal in many areas in North America. In Ontario, there was an 80-percent reduction in surface water pollutants because of it just one year later. The private sector came up with other compounds not as harmful to our environment, and us by extension. And yet Weed Man is the 10th-best franchise under $150,000 to own in America, according to Forbes.

So, instead of trying to license the tool beyond the reach of a casual enthusiast, I propose we limit the use of the fuel that’s actually causing the damage. Call it ammunition control for your car.

You want to continue to drive that Passat TDI? Go right ahead. Diesel is now $7/gallon to gasoline’s $2.99. Need a diesel-powered vehicle to get work done? Track it all and get a big, fat tax break at the end of the year. Medium- and heavy-duty truck manufacturers will scramble to make gasoline and natural gas-powered alternatives. Those with older trucks, seeing the additional outlay in purchasing diesel fuel, will ditch those vehicles in favor of cleaner, less expensive alternatives.

But at least give me the choice to drive a light-duty diesel truck, to spend as much as I can afford on that precious fuel, and to put as much money into public coffers as my budget will allow, all the while letting me enjoy that magical torque.

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207 Comments on “You Can Take My Light-Duty Diesel Truck From My Cold, Dead Hands...”


  • avatar
    86er

    Somewhere in here there’s a Chris Rock joke about pricing bullets at $1 million/unit.

  • avatar
    slance66

    Ironic considering that Europe’s heavy usage of diesel is all a result of subsidizing that fuel and penalizing gas/petrol.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    Funny you mention fuel oil. Even here in Ohio (not really northern climate) and in the suburbs of a big city there are still many people with tanks and fuel oil. My house was on it until 2008. When I was house hunting in 2012, I avoided any houses which had oil heat as a no-go.

    • 0 avatar
      heavy handle

      Modern oil furnaces are almost as efficient as modern gas furnaces (high 90% range), and heating bills are similar.

      Some coworkers and I did a comparison a few years back. Spreadsheeted all our invoices as far back as we could, added fudge factors for square footage and age/insulation.
      Gas seems cheaper per BTU, but they charge you year-round and add lots of flat fees. The full-year costs are too close to call.

      I wonder if gas and/or oil furnaces burn hot enough for NOx to form?

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        Haha, NERDS!

        Just kidding. The problem around here is people will not update the furnace unless it totally breaks. So they’re running fuel oil on their 1940’s furnace with .002% efficiency. I went into a house with an original fuel oil furnace, it was light pink enamel and said THERMO-RATOR or something vintage on it.

        And I think the costs for getting the tank dug up and removed are quite high.

        One solution (which I have) is have an electric range and water heater, and have the gas shut off in warm months. $40 monthly fee goes away for April-late September.

        • 0 avatar
          heavy handle

          Nerds: guilty as charged.
          It all started with a lunchtime conversation. Someone needed a new furnace and had received conflicting reports on which option was cheapest.

          Those old cast-iron furnaces last forever, unlike modern sheetmetal furnaces. The key thing is the burner itself. Just because the furnace looks old doesn’t mean it hasn’t been updated.

          Buried tanks are effectively illegal where I live. You can’t install new ones, and you can’t insure old ones.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I guess the insurance isn’t an issue here, or those homes would never pass for a mortgage. So when your tank goes bad wherever you live, you’re out the cost of a conversion to a lines system?

            The guy who put in the original heating system in my house in ’38 stapled his business card to the rafter above where the furnace is. I didn’t find that til I was down there poking around nearly two years later. The phone number was like “G18.”

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            If the tank goes bad you are on the hook for the environmental cleanup. In the forest industry rules for storage tanks are very strict. IIRC they have to be double walled and you have to build a berm around the storage tanks just in case there is a spill. They are also required to be a set distance away from creeks or any open water.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          MARGE: Homer, that isn’t very nice.
          HOMER: Marge, try to understand. There are two kinds of college students: jocks and nerds. As a jock, it is my duty to give nerds a hard time.
          [A “jock” walks by]
          HOMER: Hey pal! Did you get a load of the nerd?
          JOCK: [not understanding] Pardon?

        • 0 avatar
          operagost

          Burning fuel oil was very, very expensive until this past winter. Over $3/gallon expensive at one point.

          I would switch to gas if only someone would do it for free. Yeah, it costs many thousands to convert. Boo hoo, people have old boilers! Mine is actually 85% efficient, even though it’s 15 years old. But hookups cost more than zero, and the way my property is laid out I’m sure the contractor is going to break or destroy something trying to run that gas line. And I get to wonder if that gas will keep flowing if something bad happens. Meanwhile, I control the supply of heating oil in my tank.

          • 0 avatar
            RobertRyan

            Burning natural gas would be a lot cleaner than fuel Oil, must be a lot of pollution from that

          • 0 avatar
            Flipper35

            We switched from fuel oil to a geothermal heat pump. Our ROI here in Wisconsin was 6.5 years in heating costs alone. Cooling costs are way down as well.

      • 0 avatar
        heavy handle

        Answering my own question: a quick search tells me that home furnaces burn around 2,200 F (1,200 C). NOx output doesn’t become significant until around 2,800 F.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      I live in the central-south United States. I knew about diesel generators, but I didn’t even know that oil-heated homes were a thing.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        It’s some BS. Big tank made of metal in your yard somewhere near your house (mine was underneath the porch, I think). And you have to have someone bring a truck to your driveway and pump oil in there.

        BS!

        I’ve no idea how you monitor the oil level in there. Or how often that tank is going to rust and then need replacement?

        • 0 avatar
          operagost

          There’s normally a gauge with a float. Or, you can tap the tank and go by the sound.

          Tanks can be inside the house in the basement or crawl space, which is a much better place since the tank won’t rust and warm oil burns more efficiently.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            That makes sense. Mine was inside the back porch, encased within the foundation. Not accessible through any crawlspace or door though.

            Now I wonder if they just left it empty, or filled it with concrete or something back in 08. It’s definitely still sitting there.

        • 0 avatar
          BigOldChryslers

          My parents’ furnace oil tank is in their basement, not buried in their yard. So was the one in my grandparents’ house. My house used to have oil heat before it was converted to natural gas, and that tank was in the basement.

          You get a contract with the oil company. They estimate usage based on your historical consumption and how cold it’s been to figure out how often to stop at your house to refill the tank.

        • 0 avatar
          heavy handle

          Modern tanks are fiberglass, or other rust-proof materials.

          The trucks around here use long hoses from the street. It’s easier and safer (no low branches, no snow-covered hazards, etc).

          You can monitor the oil level, but most providers refill automatically.
          They use local temperatures and previous history to estimate when you are getting low.

          My neighborhood must be around 50/50 oil and gas. It would have been 100% oil originally (50 years ago).

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I’m very glad I chose not to have to deal with this nonsense. Here’s to hoping that old tank was drained fully and won’t rust and seep into my foundation and yard? Given the location, it is certainly original to the house.

            The metal lid for it is at the corner of the porch, never have lifted it.

          • 0 avatar
            mason

            Fuel oil is more commonly used in rural areas than it is in urban areas. Where I live, your very limited in heat sources. Unless you have a gas well on your property your choices are either electric, propane, or fuel oil. Electric used to be the most cost effective until they dropped the all electric rate incentive. Propane at least around here is the most expensive heat source, and the big tanker trucks really have a hard time getting back into some places when the weather is bad. There is also the option to heat with wood, but by the time you factor in the cost of an outdoor unit, equipment to cut and haul it, and all the labor it doesn’t really add up.

            In our last home we had a heat pump that was supplemented with an oil furnace. We averaged about a tank to a tank and a half a year which was pretty good given the length of our heating season.

        • 0 avatar

          I’m in Massachusetts, and my house was built in ’57. Still has the original oil furnace. The oil tank is in the basement. The oil companies are pretty careful to deliver the oil frequently enough that one doesn’t run out, although I did run out several years ago, apparently along with several others serviced by the same company.

          The natural gas line runs about 5 well-spaced houses short of my house.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          If you live someplace cold all you have to do is look at the frost line.

      • 0 avatar
        brettc

        It’s a huge thing here in Maine. I’d say 90% of the housing stock has oil heat. New houses are being built with propane or natural gas boilers, but oil heat still reigns supreme and there are no emission controls on oil boilers. Sometimes in my neighbourhood I can smell diesel exhaust as I walk the dog. It’s not coming from a diesel vehicle, but someone’s house.

        Maine also has a dirty old oil fired power station that they typically only run during peak times (either extreme cold or extreme heat days)

        http://www.mmwec.org/wyman.html

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al from Oz

          brettc,
          Maine is very close, actually the closest state to where the majority of heating oil is refined in Canada.

          If my memory serves me correctly most heating oil refined for use in the US is from Nova Scotia(?).

    • 0 avatar
      jpolicke

      Our house had its oil tank buried in the yard. Had a leak somewhere in the top so water entered in heavy rain. After coping with it for years by using a marine water separator I took advantage of the tax credit NYS was offering to replace buried fuel tanks. They pump it nearly dry then fill it with foam to keep it from collapsing.

      I’d switch to gas but they stopped running the main a block away. PSEG won’t eat the cost unless the entire block agrees to convert.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    “Those with older trucks, seeing the additional outlay in purchasing diesel fuel, will ditch those vehicles in favor of cleaner, less expensive alternatives.”

    Meanwhile, your can of corn now costs $5.39 as they pass that cost right on to the consumer until the trucks/vehicles they own are due for replacement.

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      I don’t see the problem, we over-produce so much corn the industry needs to cram it into everything.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        Lol, my food item example was the exact wrong one. Substitute frozen pizza. Point being, all the transport companies aren’t just going to dump their trucks because diesel is suddenly wacko expensive. They pass the costs to the consumer at the store.

        • 0 avatar
          stuki

          Providing an opening for more local pizza guys, who can deliver on bicycle…. In the rain. In Portland…. Or at least, burn less fuel on delivery.

          If paying more for stuff from afar is too high a price, then obviously the supposed “pollution” from diesels aren’t that big a deal.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      California has outlawed the use of older commercial trucks. Even out of state truckers aren’t allowed in with older pre-emissions iron.

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        The law was passed, banning pre emissions, older commercial diesels in California, except the rule wasn’t enforced. It doesn’t appear to be unconstitutional, the trucks are grandfathered in.

        • 0 avatar
          -Nate

          Is that a fact ? .
          .
          I ask because so many of the Junk Yards I use , are now filled with old Big Rigs .
          .
          I sure miss the sound of an un muffled Detroit Diesel at full chat =8-) .
          .
          -Nate

          • 0 avatar
            mason

            Mostly it is true, but there are a few loopholes small private owners have found that have allowed them to run pre-2010 emissions.

            http://www.arb.ca.gov/msprog/onrdiesel/onrdiesel.htm

  • avatar
    dwford

    You an Jack are only a couple logical leaps from pushing us into autonomous electric cars and/or busses. You know, because it’s good for us. Thank you Orwellian overlord for knowing whats best for me.

    • 0 avatar
      ckb

      Is it halloween already? Because your logical leaps just built a strawman! As I’m sure you know that is where the original argument is too difficult, etc to refute so you create your own. Paraphrasing this case: “They don’t just want CDLs or pricey diesel, they secretly want to put you in a pod to control you!!”

      And in a somewhat ironic twist, I think that the force that will end up putting is in autonomous electric vehicles is…the free market! I give it 10-20 years until e-cars are universally cheaper and everyone realizes commuting != freedom.

      • 0 avatar
        dwford

        It’s the whole “we know what’s best for you” mantra of the government planner types. The ones that tax cigarettes, ban large soda cups, want warning labels on everything, etc etc.

        • 0 avatar
          VoGo

          Oh, THAT old “we know what’s best for you” mantra. As in, breathing. Got it. As in preventing tens of thousands of deaths.

          Yes, that does sound like what’s best for me.

          • 0 avatar
            heavy handle

            Amazing how partisan this issue has become. Clean-air used to be the one thing all Americans agreed on. Reagan established CARB, Nixon established the EPA.
            Now you get accused of being some kind of comic-book mind-control nut job for even thinking that you don’t want to breath-in toxic fumes.

            The irony is that the people who write that stuff are just regurgitating the party line, saying what others told them to. Yet they claim to be scared of others telling them what to think.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            There are a handful of idiots in my circle of R/C enthusiasts who claim they “need” to run leaded gas in their low-compression two-strokes for some reason. No, dummy, you don’t need 100LL in an engine the manufacturer says needs 90 RON.

        • 0 avatar
          ToddAtlasF1

          It was all-seeing, all-knowing European big government that killed scores of thousands of people by forcing everyone they could into diesel cars in the name of the environment. People that can’t see that deserve what they’re going to get.

          • 0 avatar
            VoGo

            Heavy Handle,
            Did you say something about comic-book mind-control nut jobs? I’m not sure if it was intentional, but ToddAtlasShrugged just proved your point.

          • 0 avatar
            heavy handle

            I love it! “The problem is over in Europe, not here. Pay no attention to what’s happening behind the curtain…”

            Some people fall for that every single time. It’s a three card Monte move: divert attention by pointing to “those foreigners” and you can get people to do what you want.

            Because “Europeans.” Or Mexicans. Or Chinese, whatever keeps you from paying attention to what’s happening here.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            It’s vacuous SJW replies like that one that had me thinking VoGo was a first-year humanities major instead of a man facing late middle age. Do either of your callow attempts at distraction change the validity of what I said? Diesel emissions are an issue here, but not one that impacts every aspect of urban life like it does in European city where people forfeited their ability to think as individuals on an earlier schedule than we’re on here. Look at a lithium mine before you go all-in on collective hysteria for battery electrics. Maybe you should replace your Stuart Smalley daily affirmations with repeating the true statement that you’re not smarter than markets. You’re not smarter than markets. Never forget it.

          • 0 avatar
            heavy handle

            Todd,

            Let me put this very simply. Don’t worry so much about “the Europeans,” or “the Mexicans,” or any other place you have no control over. They’re grown-ups, they can take care of their own issues. If they want your help, they will ask for it.

            Pay attention to what’s happening on home turf instead.

            Your line of argument sounds exactly like “little Timmy’s Mom doesn’t make him clean his room, why should I clean mine?” You wouldn’t take that BS from a five-year-old, why take it from yourself?

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            calling someone a “SJW” completely invalidates your argument.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            Only in your dreams, JimZ.

            If you were smarter heavy handle, you’d take this opportunity to learn from the Europeans’ mistake. They made laws in the name of environmentalism that did far more harm than the problem they claimed to be addressing. At the least, it’s a reason to try to fully understand an issue before forcing people to live by the edicts of people so stupid that they think they’re smarter than markets, or worse than that, stupid enough to they think that introducing false costs is the same thing as using market forces.

            When you say to ignore the disastrous repercussions of blindly following environmental initiatives in other countries, you’re advocating for a path that’s demonstrated to be destructive. Do you know why you’re doing that?

        • 0 avatar
          philipwitak

          re: “…we know what’s best for you…tax cigarettes, ban large soda cups, want warning labels on everything, etc etc.”

          but cigarettes deserve to be taxed. large soda cups should be banned. we want warning labels on everything that is potentially dangerous. etc. etc. et al!

  • avatar
    JReed

    Analogous, not “homogeneous.”

  • avatar
    TDIGuy

    > Diesel is now $7/gallon to gasoline’s $2.99.

    It’s about .84/L and $1/L here. Even cheaper if I drive through the reserve on my way to work. Prices will fluctuate so it’s not the only consideration.

    I’m not totally biased, despite my handle. Just there is more to think about than what comes out of the tailpipe. Diesel is less refined, so less impact at the processing end as well. As I said in the other article, vehicles are about 10% of the problem, but an easy target. Brodozers and cheaters notwithstanding, everything that comes out of the tailpipe meets emissions standards.

    • 0 avatar

      I meant the future “now”.

    • 0 avatar
      RobertRyan

      Including DIrect Injection Gas engines, with their vastly more harmful to human health, particulates. Realtime NOx is not good either

    • 0 avatar
      smartascii

      End-to-end, diesel is slightly worse for us than gasoline, but not much, depending on what kind of emissions you view as most worrisome. It’s less refined, so it pollutes less during the refining process, but you get fewer gallons of it from a barrel of oil, so that’s offset by the pollution from the production and transportation-to-refinery process. Once in the vehicle, it’s more energy-dense, so less CO2 than equivalent gasoline power, but emissions control systems can’t bring NOx and particulate emissions to (Non-GDI) gasoline levels yet, even if they meet emissions standards.

  • avatar
    TrailerTrash

    OK. Let me start the hate.

    Its population growth that is killing the earth…not pollution, unless you mean human numbers is sorta a pollutant
    .
    I am not in favor of keeping the species alive at all cost. I think most other species in the world would agree.If they had any input.

    But the bit about government regulation is narrow. It is hypocritical. It is PC.

    How about regulating how many kids one can have or perhaps how you raise your kids. How about some so called philosophical discussions as to human population growth and why certain people seem to have no give a damn about having kids or affording kids…just get em and let em go.

    So ok, we put a damper on the use of diesel and the rednecks that drive em. So what. But I would rather take away the knuckleheads right to just impregnate anything at any time and as many times as desired rather than take away his diesel.

    You think I am being meanspirited? Just stand outside any Walmart store and tell me what YOU see. I saw a woman yelling at her 5 year old daughter to eat her “breakfast donut” before she ate her candy bar…. Yup, now THAT is real parenting. And more dangerous than her boyfriend bubba’s diesel.

    We ask for a cheap, affordable non polluting energy source…and we end up with a planet chock full of humans consuming everything in sight like little yellow Packmen.

    Where is THIS discussion? It an’t happenin cause it ain’t PC and its pretty sensitive. Which God given right s more dangerous to the planet…a right to drive diesels or have unlimited or poorly raised children?

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      That particular discussion often ends in genocide. Depending on their position in the food chain, a person may be for or against such a thing.

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      As a country, we’ve already decided to abandon the future to Mexico and the Islamic states.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Depends on how staged everything really happens to be.

      • 0 avatar
        ckb

        “As a country, we’ve already decided to abandon the future to Mexico and the Islamic states.”

        And obviously the reasoning behind that is: the gov won’t regulate where businesses can put their factories or hire as unskilled laborers (Mexico) or make the transition away from fossil fuels it’s top priority (Islamic states). Those darn conservatives have ruined everything!

      • 0 avatar
        TOTitan

        I didnt know you were a Trumpbot

        • 0 avatar
          Jack Baruth

          Trumpbots are trying to reverse the trend.

          I’m going to sit poolside and watch the end of civilization.

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            “I’m going to sit poolside and watch the end of civilization.”

            @Jack

            Until the tequila and red wine run out – I’m good. Wana enjoy a couple of cigars while we watch?

          • 0 avatar
            GeneralMalaise

            “Actuarially, I’m likely to die somewhere around 2060. At current rates of growth the country will be somewhere around 2.3% Muslim by then. I’m not exactly quaking in my boots…”

            2060 can’t come soon enough…

      • 0 avatar
        seth1065

        Very open minded of you Jack. I think you may be on to something, unless you were born here before the Pilgrims showed up do not let the door hit you in the ass.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Would you be in favor of deportation for people like you who make such a ridiculous comment?

        • 0 avatar
          Jack Baruth

          You mean — unless I was born here before the “Native Americans” came across the landbridge and murdered the proto-humans here?

          History is hard.

          • 0 avatar
            TrailerTrash

            exactly.

            just am so weary of the native american holiness. it has always been the bigger eatin the smaller.

            amazin how there is the believe everybody was just gettin along in front of the campfires and sharing the wealth before the big bad euro trash floated in.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            “exactly.

            just am so weary of the native american holiness. it has always been the bigger eatin the smaller.

            amazin how there is the believe everybody was just gettin along in front of the campfires and sharing the wealth before the big bad euro trash floated in.”

            That has nothing to do with it. It’s the notion that “the immigration which led to ME living here was *good,* but the immigration which is letting other people into this country is *bad.*” I’m here today because a handful of people from Poland, Slovakia, and Germany came to this country sometime in the mid-late 19th century. And since Slavs, Italians, and Irish were the “evil Mexicans and Muslims” of the day, some of my ancestors ended up being worked to death in coal mines. You know, one of those “jobs Americans don’t want to do.” And yeah, yeah, tell me all about “but… but… at least they came here *legally*!” yeah, and do you know how much EASIER it was to get in here back then?

            This entire country was built by immigrants. It’s sad to me that one particular generation now has decided they have the authority to say “This is where it stops, we’re full.”

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            The Bering Strait theory is one theory. Some scientists discovered artifacts similar to coastal regions of Spain as well as similar drawings.
            Mitochondrial DNA analysis of “first nations” peoples show a consistent pattern indicating European ancestry or interbreeding in a percentage of the population.
            Mitochondrial DNA breaks down in a very stable and consistent pattern and therefore age of the DNA can be predicted. It indicates that Caucasians were here about the same time as “land bridge” settlers.

            The theory is that during the last ice age the Atlantic ocean was frozen solid down to at least the Southern part of the East coast around Florida. Oceans were considerably more shallow as well due to water stored as ice. Ocean currents striking the Atlantic ice flowed from the European side to the North American side as well.

            @Jimz – well said.

          • 0 avatar
            TrailerTrash

            Jimz

            Who said how we got here and took control and established this nation was all good and the immigration of today is bad.

            But to imply that once somebody threw a rock and broke a window now EVERYBODY can throw rocks and break windows is wrong and absurd.

            Are you suggesting there be no national borders or legal vs illegal immigration and a free passing across all borders?

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        Numbers to support this? Oh, right, there aren’t any. We’re having net outmigration to Mexico and less than 1% of the population is Muslim. It’s just ugly fearmongering.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          One percent doesn’t sound like much but that’s 3.23 million souls. Quite a bit, actually.

          http://www.census.gov/popclock/

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            ~3m in a country of 320m does not mean we’ve “abandoned the future.” If it did, I shudder to think how much control we’ve given to Christians.

            Actuarially, I’m likely to die somewhere around 2060. At current rates of growth the country will be somewhere around 2.3% Muslim by then. I’m not exactly quaking in my boots…

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            The only thing which seems to propel the Christians into violence on religious grounds is abortion while several instances of public attacks by Muslims have occurred in recent years (inc a beheading in Oklahoma in addition to shootings at Ft Hood and the incident in California last December, off the top of my head). I have my own suspicions about the religion’s additional purpose as acting more as a political organization and than a faith but try to adhere to the simple fact a man’s chosen religion is his business and not mine.

            I do hope you’re right about the 2.3% figure.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            28-C-L,

            Explain Dearborn then.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @HDC – you say you respect other views but then you say “Sorry Lou, you’re talking out your @ss again.”
            and..
            “Inform yourself before making such blatant statements. You are much too intelligent to make such a statement.”

            That shows intolerance toward those who hold different opinions from oneself.

            Lets see where this goes.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          dal20402, there’s a difference between being in the US legally and being in the US illegally. If they are in the US legally, they have permission to be here.

          All the people who are in the US illegally are breaking our laws and need to be deported. They do not have permission to be here.

          I’m the son of immigrant parents, but they got here with the proper authorization and had Green Cards before they became naturalized American citizens.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            Did I say anything about whether the migration was legal or illegal? All I said was that there was net outmigration to Mexico, which has been true since the recession and remains true.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            “All the people who are in the US illegally are breaking our…”

            Say Hi to Consuelo for me, your Hot 22 year old, Honduran Citizen housekeeper/cook here on an expired visa, you pay $2/hr plus free room and board *including pool privileges.

            Point is, why would they hop the border if *WE* didn’t “break our laws” 1st??

            For Disneyland Wild Adventure??? If they did, it would be with money they earned in Mexico/Canada/South America/etc, and they’d *deport* themselves when their money ran out.

          • 0 avatar
            SC5door

            “All the people who are in the US illegally are breaking our laws and need to be deported. They do not have permission to be here.”

            Coming from the one who has mentioned SEVERAL times that they used hired help (that are illegals) because it’s cheaper.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            That’s right. I have hired them in the past and my contractors continue to hire them today. They need to eat too. And they do the jobs that no American wants. Not always cheaper.

            A stone-mason or roofer gets paid a great deal more than common laborer. Not uncommon to pay a tile-layer $1500-$3000 in just labor to tile a 3000sq ft house. That’s the same scale paid to an American to do the same work, minus socsec, workman’s comp, etc etc etc.

            But they are here illegally. Much of that is because of our national immigration laws and policies, going all the way back to the days of the Brazeros of 1942. We imported labor then because America’s men went off to fight a war.

            But dal20402 is right. We’ve actually seen outmigration to Mexico.

            We’ve lost a number of illegal aliens that were repeat hired-hands for us because the increased production of goods in Mexico created all sorts of spin-off jobs there that beckoned them to come home.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            @HDC – How do “dirty jobs” ever get done, in say, countries tough on hiring the undocumented, and actually enforce those laws?

            Water finds its own level. The US labor market/field would have to pay ditch diggers, dishwashers, hotel maids, fruit pickers, etc, etc, what ever it takes to get them off welfare/etc.

            Most of the “losses” don’t necessary need to be passed on to the consumer. Water finds its own level there too. But you’d be floored by the obscene fortunes Big Business drops in DC for the Feds to look the over way.

            And the game goes on, chasing our own tail.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            ” How do “dirty jobs” ever get done, in say, countries tough on hiring the undocumented, and actually enforce those laws?”

            DenverMike, I honestly don’t know.

            Never have I been faced with other than my own labor-shortage situations.

            I do know for a fact, based on personal experience over more than 30 years, that getting American citizens to do the jobs that I needed done, was impossible, UNLESS….. they were self-employed (working for themselves) and then they demanded HUGE fees for their labor. More than I was willing to pay.

            “what ever it takes to get them off welfare/etc.” Yeah, Bill Clinton tried that.

            He had the right idea about people having to work for their welfare check. But I don’t see the same requirements these days.

            “Most of the “losses” don’t necessary need to be passed on to the consumer.” The people that actually created the job(s) are not going to absorb the extra labor expense and settle for a lower profit. So as wages rise, we’ll see fewer jobs in return.

            IIRC, only ~2/3 of America’s eligible workers make up the current workforce.

            The day after the 2008 US national election, my wife’s dad (a lifelong Democrat) called everyone employed by his business together (all 65 full-time employees) and told them that as of the first of 2009 they would be on their own. Many of them became contract/self-employed, me and my wife included.

            A lot of other small-businesses did the very same. And with mandated higher minimum wages now being forced on small-business owners, it would not surprise me if employers scale back their workforce numbers.

            ” the game goes on, chasing our own tail.”

            Yeah, I agree with that. People get paid what they are worth. It would be nice if no-brainer jobs could get paid at the neuro-surgeon pay scale, but it is not realistic.

            Labor is labor. Employees are just employees. Employees assume no risk. Don’t have any skin in the game. Hiring them is a crapshoot. You hope they do a good job and make money for you. Many don’t. They’re sandbaggers.

            From personal experience, I knew which people I hired were keepers, and which were not. I kept the keepers working and sh!t-canned the non-producers.

            It’s reasonable to assume that most business owners or employers also know that about their own employees.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            Really, I don’t want to hear it! Employers too poor to pay minimum wage? They need to sell/scrap the business, accept failure and move on to the next thing.

            I’ve had a business fail. My fault. Picked myself up and figured it out.

            But it doesn’t have to be one or the other. Minimum wage or neurosurgeon pay scale. Water finds its…

            Raising the minimum wage dramatically is another highly controversial topic. Keeping up with inflation, maybe. Makes my brain hurt either way.

            When it comes to actually digging ditches, shoveling sh!t, pulling water mellons, hard labor, those jobs should definitely pay 2X or more, verse working in an air conditioned, fast food, type jobs. There’s OK to very good payoff for employers of dirty, disgusting, back breaking jobs. If not, not my problemo.

            But it would take at least a generation to fix this mess/disaster we created, with the soft “legal” US workforce on the lower end, unskilled, brainless jobs, going unfilled and the need for illegal aliens filling the void.

            Illegal aliens “breaking our laws” are by far, nowhere near the root of the problem. They’re just a symptom. Players in the game.

            There’s widespread corruption at all levels, so the double talk, lobbyists, millions of low skill jobs going unfilled, more/better to collect welfare/food stamps/etc, building the Great Wall of NA, *circus* continues unhampered.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            DenverMike, I did not write that employers were too poor to pay mandated minimum wages. I wrote that employers do not want to settle for less profits.

            Employers take all the risks. They put up the capital and energy to start a business. Employers decide what they need to make as a fair return on their investment of time and money. Not the employees.

            Employees are a dime a dozen. Employers are in business to make money, not to be a benevolent welfare agency for employees.

            If employees don’t like what they’re getting paid, let them start their own businesses.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @DenverMike – good point.

            Those “illegals” wouldn’t have much reason to come to the USA if it wasn’t for “natural born” Americans employing them illegally.

            The one’s that often rally against illegal immigration (among other things) often claim to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform.
            How do they avoid the internal stress created by that cognitive dissonance?

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            Hell yeah employers “settle” for “breaking our laws”! Because they CAN, not because it’s right or wrong or they absolutely need to for survival.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            “employers “settle” for “breaking our laws”! Because they CAN, not because it’s right or wrong or they absolutely need to for survival.”

            Nope! Employers actively seek to find the lowest cost labor, and illegal aliens are an abundant source because of America’s faulty immigration policy that goes all the way back to the days of the Brazeros of WWII.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            So they should be deported unless they happen to work at your plantation?

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            “they should be deported ”

            If they are here illegally, they should be deported. Even if they work for me, or the meat processing plants in Nebraska, or the corn fields of Iowa, or the lettuce fields of California.

            My in-laws moved to Germany last year and all that’s required there for permanent-alien residency is to register with the local cops and the American Embassy once a year.

            Ditto when my brother moved to Ensenada, Mexico, last year.

            Illegal aliens in the US do not register with anyone, don’t have to register with anyone, and hide among the populace as if they are American citizens.

            And America’s long-standing immigration policy encourages such behavior.

            Just try sneaking into Mexico for an extended stay, without registering.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Odd logic.

            Blame the “illegals” for coming to the USA to do jobs no one wants to.

            Blame the “illegals” do for being exploited by businesses or private citizens wanting work done dirt cheep.

            Why don’t “WE” sneak into Mexico?

            If the USA was a backwater we’d be “sneaking” where ever we could have a better chance at surviving.

            Ironically Mexico has its own ‘illegal” immigration problem too. Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador are counties in worse shape than Mexico.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            @highdesertcat

            “My in-laws moved to Germany last year and all that’s required there for permanent-alien residency is to register with the local cops and the American Embassy once a year.”

            are they retired, or working? because it’s a s**t-ton harder to move to another country if you expect to be able to work there. Hell, I’ve had to go to Canada numerous times for work reasons (mostly meetings and launch reviews) and CBSA has given me the third degree a number of times, worried that I might be coming in to steal jobs from qualified Canadians.

            “I’m the son of immigrant parents, but they got here with the proper authorization and had Green Cards before they became naturalized American citizens.”

            yeah, well consider that most white people’s ancestors immigrated to this country before the notion of a “green card” ever existed. you’re doing the same damn thing of acting like it was all good and just that your family was allowed to immigrate here, but anyone after you had damn well better have permission from God before you’ll let them in.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            JimZ, my dad was a post-WWII immigrant from Portugal.

            My mom was a pre-WWII immigrant from Germany.

            Yes, at that time they had to apply for entry to the US at an overseas consulate to gain resident-alien status.

            Same rules as now, except for Political Asylum refugees like Cubans, Syrians, Iraqis, et al.

            My wife’s parents were brought to America after WWII because their parents were German rocket scientists and were brought to White Sands Missile Range in 1945.

            My wife’s sister and her husband moved to Germany with them in Jan 2015. None of them HAVE to work but are financially self-sufficient.

            So I’m all for LEGAL immigration. I’m against ILLEGAL immigration, people who come across the border without permission and squat.

            Big difference between legal and illegal.

            One of my sisters is married to a Vancouver, BC, Canadian and they have residences on both sides of the border.

            Neither has a problem with crossing the border either way and they have both a Washington State driver’s license and a Canadian drivers license, and passport from their respective domicile-country.

            My other sister is married to an American-born Jew. They reside outside of Tel Aviv these days, and the Jewish state requires them to be registered as resident-aliens.

            Only in America can people waltz across the border and squat without consequences.

            ———-

            I wanted to add, in case you didn’t already know, that in New Mexico we actually assist illegals to move to the Blue States by giving the illegals a Driver’s License, letting them open bank accounts, and allowing them to buy cars and insurance so they can move on.

            This all came about during the Bill Richardson administration and it has significantly reduced illegals who stay inside NM. The vast majority actually move to the Blue States where they are welcomed with open arms.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            “Ironically Mexico has its own ‘illegal” immigration problem too. Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador are counties in worse shape than Mexico.”

            Sorry Lou, you’re talking out your @ss again. Your mouth knows better.

            Mexico ferries their illegals north to the US border.

            Remember all those little kids they dumped on the Texas side of the Rio Grande? We had over 700 of them at the nearby Air Force Base, and another 660 of them at the FLETC in Artesia, NM.

            Once the kids were here, the parents were allowed to join them. And they did. Tons of them around the Brownsville, TX area.

            So, please! Inform yourself before making such blatant statements. You are much too intelligent to make such a statement.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            highdesertcat – oh and another note.

            I always find it highly interesting that you have to list all of the ethnicities of all of your relations/in-laws.

            That speaks volumes.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            If you actually think, the constant hiring of illegal aliens to work for you cheaply, does NOT make you a hypocrite, then it don’t!

            But how’s that different from the guy with a complete arsenal of assault rifles, shot/hand guns and other weaponry, and of course wants total gun control for everyone else??

            Mexico “ferries” who/what/where?? Getting from central America to the US is a high risk operation. They’re lucky if they can make it, sneaking up through Mexico without getting robbed, beaten and detained, and that’s just by Mexican border agents! Then they can face long jail time in Mexico, before getting deported back to where they came from.

            They gotta be real *desperate* for the crumbs you reluctantly pay. If you’re OK with it, same here!

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            “I always find it highly interesting that you have to list all of the ethnicities of all of your relations/in-laws.

            That speaks volumes.”

            It should! That’s why I do it. I’m not just spouting off. I actually have a lot of ethnicity within my family and relations. A lot!

            I’m a half-breed myself. Half Portuguese, and half German, not quite accepted by either side of my heritage.

            And just because you and I don’t share the same philosophy doesn’t mean that I’m not tolerant of your beliefs. Believe what you want. You’re not paying my bills. I’m not paying yours.

            When it comes to illegal aliens in the US you are dreadfully misinformed. Or just plain ignorant.

            I live it every day. And my youngest son is a Supervisory Border Patrol Agent in SW TX, married to an illegal alien who became a US citizen. I hear about the Catch and Release program. What do you know about it?

            So if you find my comments to be so offensive or intolerant of your beliefs, feel free to scroll past them.

            I won’t be offended. I completely understand about different strokes for different folks.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            DenverMike, I’m fine with it, and so are all the ranchers and farmers (and other business people) in this region.

            But like I wrote, we encourage illegal aliens to migrate to the Blue States.

            And they’re doing it, en masse.

            And those employers in the Blue States just love all that cheap labor that is constantly coming their way.

            Yo! To the tune of some 15million illegals aliens.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @HDC – you do miss a lot of subtle points that I am making.

            I’m not offended. Just some bait I threw out.

            I’ll throw you a bone:

            “That shows intolerance toward those who hold different opinions from oneself.”

            Enter that in a search engine and see what answer you get.

            You list all of those family ties to hide it.

            Here is another:
            “the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform”
            That was another comment I made. Enter that one into Google.

            It makes sense that you do not know the words that apply to those definitions.

            “Do unto others before they do unto me.”

            That comes up under multiple “less than positive” definitions related to one’s character.

            You are way too predictable.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            I don’t miss a thing, because I actually read every word of a comment that is addressed to me directly.

            If someone takes the time to read my comments, and then replies to it, I will do no less than read and reread that reply. It’s just common courtesy.

            But “the gospel according to Lou” doesn’t work for everybody. I found out a long, long time ago that faith can move mountains.

            But faith is pretty much useless if you have to make real-world decisions when you’re among heathens and non-believers who prove that humans are the worst species on the planet.

            Sometimes we have to help ourselves to get ahead. And I learn along the way.

            So, in that respect, I am extremely predictable.

            And with that, I’ll say good night. It’s been a long day, but my illegal alien help got all the swamp coolers and air conditioners of the rentals serviced, so I can tally this as a successful week.

            I’ll be gone awhile so don’t draw the conclusion that I’m avoiding you. I’m not.

            We’re going to San Antonio, TX, and then on to Cancun for a couple of weeks.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            @HDC – It’s that “Do as I say, Not what I do” or something like that. After what you said, up the thread, that directly contradicts what you’ve spoken about before, I wasn’t about to let it slide without “giving you the business”!

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      “Where is THIS discussion? It an’t happenin cause it ain’t PC and its pretty sensitive. ”

      Well, yeah, the species Homo Sapiens is hard-wired to reproduce (and really, really enjoys it, even when they’re just playing at reproducing), so when you tell folks you can’t do it anymore, it tends to go down badly. Plus, there’s no guarantee that two “bubbas,” as you put it, won’t sire a Nobel prize winner, just as there’s no guarantee that two highly successful, responsible parents won’t produce the next James Holmes (or a “bubba,” for that matter). Unfortunately, reproduction is a crapshoot. I’m sure God amuses Himself up there with the eternal s**t-show, but I digress.

      How ’bout more effective, cheaper and more widely available birth control instead?

      • 0 avatar
        TrailerTrash

        “How ’bout more effective, cheaper and more widely available birth control instead?”

        got nuthin gainst birth control. in fact kinda thinkin some of it heading towards a forced use.

        but you really, really think the issue is the inability to get ahold of some pills?

        • 0 avatar
          BobinPgh

          Well, that is why I always support Planned Parenthood and never pay any money to the Catholic church at all. Meanwhile, a parent multiplies their carbon score by a factor of 6, which means I can be the most diesel driving, oil heating at my ski lodge, steak eating, jet set fly all over the world playboy and not do the damage that I would if I were a father. Maybe because I grew up in a too large family I am not interested in kids. But then we have Principal Dan, who spends all day with hundreds of kids in an elementary school and yet still wants his own? I couldn’t stand that even back when I was a kid! I don’t think I could deal with that now.

    • 0 avatar
      Sigivald

      The Earth isn’t “dying”, is the first “problem” there.

      Population growth is expected to flatten and even go negative as people get wealthier, worldwide. (As they are, contrary to common belief that Everything Is Always Getting Worse.)

      “Give the State the right to decide who gets to breed and when” sounds *lovely* and nothing could possibly go wrong and it’s for “our” own good, right?

      Eugenics on a grander scale, *no thanks*.

      “THIS discussion” is an obvious non-starter because it’s far worse than the thing it’s trying to “cure”.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        Sigivald,
        Your comment goes against our Ponzy style of economic management.

        Who will pick up the bill that will arrive sooner or later?

        • 0 avatar
          dal20402

          Not all debt is created equal.

          Manageable debt allows both individuals and countries to improve standard of living with few consequences.

          Unmanageable debt results in ugly problems at both the micro and macro level.

          We shouldn’t be afraid of manageable debt. The real problem is that we’re not really sure how much of the debt is manageable.

      • 0 avatar
        TrailerTrash

        so we are and have been gettin “smarter”.
        they tell me this is the case.
        problem is it ain’t sowin up in the population data…not that I am aware of.
        you have some showing our getting smarter is slowin the growth rte down?

        • 0 avatar
          BobinPgh

          Well, you could help in your trailer park. Pass out Planned Parenthood brochures, along with a pack of condoms to every trailer in your park.

        • 0 avatar
          JimZ

          the birth rate in developed nations is pretty much universally dropping.

          http://www.forbes.com/sites/currentevents/2012/10/16/warning-bell-for-developed-countries-declining-birth-rates/#1a14bf141ea5

          I don’t know if I’d characterize it as us “getting smarter,” but thanks to requirements inflation we spend more and more time in school (which becomes more difficult when you have kids to care for) and more time on careers. There’s no need for anyone to pop out six kids to help work the farm anymore.

    • 0 avatar
      BigDuke6

      +1

      I’ve been saying this to friends for a long time. Slow (or even stop) the world’s population growth, and you solve a LOT of problems. But suggesting that places me one step above a murderer in the view of many. But no, let’s spend billions and billions of $$$ to find a way for humans to colonize other planets, or even the moon.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      If you want to control birth rates then one must improve everyone’s standard of living. High birth rates tend to occur in impoverished populations for multiple reasons. High birth rates for many is just a matter of survival. Your children are used as labourers and offset high child infant mortality rates and ensure that parents and grandparents will receive some care from their kids. A lack of education is another factor.
      It isn’t as simple as lining up the huddled masses in front of spay/neuter clinics.

      • 0 avatar
        BobinPgh

        Well, how do you explain Principal Dan, who teaches hundreds of kids at an elementary school and still wants his own kids? Doing that all day would make me want to run into a forest and never come out!

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    Lol. Come on guys.

    “The easiest way to do this would be to restrict the operation or ownership of a diesel pickup to holders of a commercial truck license. Do you want to “roll coal” in downtown Houston traffic? Fine, but you’re going to need a CDL and a DOT physical and a logbook and all that other good stuff.”

    As I read it, it’s folks like this who are the problem. What % of Jetta TDI drivers “roll coal”?

    Not to mention, direct injection gasoline engines generate the same particulates as diesel engines (which have generally been direct injected for a long time). Should we ban gasoline vehicles too? I kind of see what point JB was trying to make, but as he sometimes does he went about making it in a really needlessly roundabout way.

    As I said in the other article… we should all be able to pollute as we please, and by extension die as we please, as free born individuals.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      “As I said in the other article… we should all be able to pollute as we please, and by extension die as we please, as free born individuals.”

      The flaw in that argument is that this may be OK for you, but when you drive something around that harms other people, that’s when your “free born” rights end, unless a plurality of the body politic agrees with you.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    “If you give a man an unloaded gun and that man cannot find a source of ammunition, the man and the gun together are as harmful as the same man wielding a rock.”

    Well….not really. People can use unloaded guns to do all kinds of harm. If a guy walks into a bank with an unloaded gun looking do a Bodhi-from-Point Break imitation, no one’s going to check whether it’s loaded before they start piling money into his bag. If a man puts a gun to a woman’s head and forces her to have sex with him, most likely he’s going to succeed in his evil endeavor – after all, how does she know it’s not loaded?

    Introducing the whole “gun thing” into these types of discussions rarely makes sense, for a simple reason: guns are purpose-made weapons, and trucks aren’t. Guns exist on their own plane, if you will.

    Otherwise, interesting post.

    • 0 avatar

      You can hold a knife to someone’s throat and it does the same thing as an unloaded gun as method of threat to do harm.

      • 0 avatar
        FreedMike

        Actually, I’d say a knife to the throat is an actual threat but a gun is more of a perceived threat.

        But either way, I think it’s hard to equate weapons with vehicles.

        But your idea of what amounts to a “sin tax” on diesel has some merit, nonetheless, assuming this problem is truly as serious as advertised. We do it already, with gas guzzler taxes and the like.

        • 0 avatar
          slow_poke

          i’m not really scared of someone throwing a knife, or a rock, at me, but i am much more scared of someone potentially being able to “throw” a bullet at me… (though to be honest i’m not really scared of either, the odds are so low in all cases, much more likely to get food poisoning from something i left in the fridge…) to me its about effectiveness and range more than anything else. guns seem to have a much large effective range than a knife or a rock, unless of course you’re a major league pitcher…

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          If one wants to levy a “sin tax” then one should apply tariffs or extra licensing fees on anything that is deemed a luxury. That would be 1/2 of pickups sold, EVERY sports car, muscle car, performance car and luxury car. Add to that most SUV’s, most motorcycles, all dirt bikes, most quads and UTV’s.

          Who is going to pick that list?

          We are seeing car guys having no problem pointing the finger at pickups.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    Mark, you obviously didn’t read my SAE link either regarding GDI engines.

    Hmmm ……….

    It isn’t the engines that are the problem it’s the manufacturers and the EPA.

    US diesels are overall cleaner than US gasoline vehicles.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      OK, I’ll bite.

      Part of this problem with diesel pickups, though, as Jack said, is that the vast majority of them are bought by people who simply don’t need them. So, therefore, the comparison isn’t strictly diesel-pickup to GDI-powered-compact – it’s two polluting vehicles, the former of which is a vanity buy for most people. Therefore, it’s the difference between an evil, and a necessary evil, if you will. The world will continue to spin if middle managers have to drive a Camry to work instead of a bro-dozer.

      But I agree with you on GDI emissions – I didn’t know about them until today, and something has to be done if the numbers are true.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        “people who simply don’t need them.”

        Where do you draw the line on the “needs” argument though?

        I just don’t see how microscopic personal use diesel market is an issue in need of stricter enforcement that isn’t already provided by our current emission regulatory system.

        • 0 avatar
          Sigivald

          “Need” arguments are the arguments of the Kommissar.

          Reject them on principle, reject them immediately.

          Anyone telling you what you “need” and trying to keep you from being able to have what they have decided you *don’t* “need” is the enemy.

          (The above is about 90% serious.)

          • 0 avatar
            TrailerTrash

            exactly.

            so, um, the bubba’s are gonna lose their dirty diesels yet my rich relatives can fly their friggen families to and from their hawaiian homes 5 times a year.
            and the carbon footprint of the family air travel is…what?

          • 0 avatar
            smartascii

            TrailerTrash: Commercial aircraft (on a passenger mile per gallon basis) are more efficient than most American cars. Private flying is not. If your rich relatives have a Gulfstream at their disposal, they’re a greater source of pollution than Bubba. If they fly commercial, it’s sort of hard to calculate, since the airplane was going to go to Hawaii whether they were on it or not, and Bubba’s not gonna drive his coal-roller to Hawaii, but it’s pretty close.

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          Well, ajla, under normal circumstances, the “I don’t care if I need it – I want it” calculus is just fine. Want a bigger TV? More power to you. Want a Big Mac instead of a plain cheeseburger? Have right at it – that’s between you and your waistline. Want to wear Polo instead of Wal-Mart stuff? As long as you can pay, no problem.

          But no one’s really harmed by any of this. I agree that the science on whether big diesel trucks harms others is incomplete, to put it kindly, but if they do disproportionate harm to the environment, that’s where “I want it ’cause I want it” stops and “I can have it as long as it doesn’t pollute too much” kicks in.

          People should not be allowed to drive these things around with no regard to the damage they’re doing (assuming there is damage, of course), just as I can’t go buy last year’s Indy 500 winning car as a daily driver.

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            FreeMike,
            Read the SAE link I provided in Jack’s poorly represented article. There is also quite a considerable amount of data to support the SAE article from EU and Asian sources.

            An EcoBoost generates more particulates than a semi. To top it off the GDI particulates on average are smaller, thus increasing harm.

            It’s not the vehicle size or type of fuel. It’s the crazy ill conceived EPA regulations that are the problem.

          • 0 avatar
            mason

            There certainly is no shortage of those that like to exaggerate in an effort to make their perception stick.

            Never have I heard the term “brodozers” so much since I began reading articles on TTAC, and I’ve certainly read about many many more than I’ve ever seen. I live rural (as does MUCH of America), where farming and living off the land to a degree is still a way of life. Where people USE their trucks whether they are gas or diesel. Does that mean they NEVER run their 3/4 ton or 1 ton truck around empty? Of course not. Just because you see someone running around with an empty 8 ft bed means nothing except that person is using his vehicle as transportation at that moment. That’s his choice. Who are you or anybody else to decide what I should or shouldn’t have?

            I guarantee there are a good number of people on this very forum that needlessly waste other resources in the name of “easy living”. If you are so concerned about the environment what changes or sacrifices have you made?

            What hypocrites we all are, eh?

          • 0 avatar
            ect

            “I live rural (as does MUCH of America)”

            Not really. Census data shows that 81% of the US population live in urban areas, 19% in rural areas. Long-term, rural population share has been declining.

            Personally, I have no problem with people who buy pickups for work purposes. OTOH, I feel nothing but scorn for urban and suburban dwellers who think it must be “cool” to have a blinged-out, optioned-up pickup to use as a daily driver.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            mason, we’re not all hypocrits. Just those holier-than-thou uber-left liberal green-weenie tree-hugging fvcks who would have us all retreat back to the agrarian age of the horse and buggy.

          • 0 avatar
            mason

            I didn’t state more of the population lives rurally. Much of America (in terms of land) is indeed rural. While many live there for different reasons the way of life is drastically different than people who live in populated areas. I’m pretty certain the majority of people on this forum live in a city, which certainly taints their perceptions of how trucks are used.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            “we’re not all hypocrits.”

            Correct.

            Any mirrors in your house?

            “Just those holier-than-thou uber-left liberal green-weenie tree-hugging fvcks who would have us all retreat back to the agrarian age of the horse and buggy.”

            “Holier than-thou” tends to be a construct of the totalitarian right. Marx said that religion was the opiate of the masses and I don’t recall anyone placing him at the right side of the isle.

            “who would have us all retreat back to the agrarian age of the horse and buggy.”

            I didn’t know that luddites were specifically uber-left liberals.

            Looks like we have found one of Trump’s speech writers and/or policy advisers.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          @ajla – do we dust off Maslow’s Hierarchy?

          One can argue that to be self actualized one “needs” that lifted flat black F450 with 48 inch monster mudders for that daily commute to work.
          “Maslow describes this level as the desire to accomplish everything that one can, to become the most that one can be.”

          or conversely – considering how sh!tty 1/3 of drivers are, I can also argue that I “need” such a beast to ensure my safety on my way to work so I can meet my basic physiological “needs”.

      • 0 avatar
        pragmatist

        The problem is: someone gets to decide what YOU need. There are plenty of people ready to decide that you don’t need a luxury car, or don’t need a sports car or don’t need a car at all–just take public transportation. Many of these people have substantial clout in the current and possibly future administrations.

        Be careful what you wish for.

        • 0 avatar
          VoGo

          Feel free to provide evidence that the current administration is determining whether you need a luxury or sports car.

          I’ll wait here while you gather all your footnotes.

        • 0 avatar
          TrailerTrash

          let vogo wait.
          he likes waiting.
          he keeps tellin others he will wait.
          gives him time to come up with more strawdog stuff.
          he would rather you go all through the past 8 years and dig out all the damned greenie laws and policies to show the ridiculousness of the request.

      • 0 avatar
        seth1065

        If you go Jacks route no Suv’s unless you can show a need for them say three kids? only have two kids sorry you have not shown need for a SUV,

        • 0 avatar
          VoGo

          No. You are just taking an argument to the extreme to make your own political points. Jack never said anything about a means test for SUVs.

          And really, it’s more of an intelligence test than a means test. Smart parents with 3 kids buy minivans. The others buy SUVs to project an image they are desperate to maintain.

          • 0 avatar
            TrailerTrash

            of course…not those that have a boat to pull or sme trailer and haulin to do.

            get on the green wagon or be killed.

            and no more family vacations. this cannot possibly be a REAL need. And no more flights that are not required.

            in fact, unless you are al gore…no more big homes.

          • 0 avatar
            mason

            Talk about taking points to the extreme.

            Minivans have a purpose and they do those things well that they were designed to do. But they do not fit everyone’s needs. Try not to be so short sighted.

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        “…the vast majority of them are bought by people who simply don’t need them.”

        Let’s be clear, about half are official “Fleet Sales” in this class. That’s buying 10 or more, trucks at a time, or within the current calendar year, having 10 trucks or more in current operation, or 10 or more “other vehicles” (currently registered/insured under a given business, *proof required) and or, approved “equipment”, skiploaders, forklifts, bobcats, etc.

        Yes there’s quite a few brodozers out there, very high profile and attention grabbing, but let’s not make a mountain out of a molehill, comparatively speaking.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      @BAFO, How could anything be cleaner? What comes out of the US diesel exhaust pipes is CLEANER than *air sucked in*, depending on how dirty the air is where it’s driven.

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        To put it another way, the city of Paris could, (or should) pump straight exhaust from 2016 US diesel trucks into all hospitals and clinics, especially into rooms with dying and ill patients with lung cancer and other breathing ailments.

        Exhaust from modern US diesel trucks is much *cleaner* than what would be sucked in, in places like Paris, London, Hong Kong, Mexico City, and yes sometimes LA.

        So try to find *any* petrol cars with cleaner exhaust.

  • avatar
    KrohmDohm

    As a normally libertarian leaning Republican it shames me to say I actually agree with a practical way to reduce the number of unnecessary Diesel vehicles. And yes they are unnecessary, they are a luxury item for many of those that have them. I gained a whole new perspective on air quality when my oldest son’s asthma reared its head. Yes heavy industry is by far the bigger polluter but a generator isn’t belching exhaust in my son’s face on a city street. It’s the truck ahead of me in traffic that does. Spending a night in the ER with a child that can barely breathe was heart wrenching. The air we breathe belongs to us all. We should all want to keep it as clean as we can.

    • 0 avatar
      TrailerTrash

      sorry to see a libertarian go bad.
      “they are a luxury item”

      so exactly how is a diesel more luxury than a family air trip for vacation to Hawaii? Or any flight for anything recreational?

      Where does the libertarian philosophically begin to fade into a control freak?

      • 0 avatar
        SC5door

        A vacation is a once a year even lifetime event. A diesel truck is a daily use item that continually clogs up the roads day in and out. Why are you even comparing the two?

      • 0 avatar
        derekson

        “Where does the libertarian philosophically begin to fade into a control freak?”

        In this case, the cause seems to be emotion over reason.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        You can be libertarian left or libertarian right. “Control freak” moves the compass to authoritarian left or authoritarian right.

        There are 4 cardinal points to that compass.

    • 0 avatar
      mason

      Krohmdohm, I’m guessing in an effort to improve your loved ones health you’ve since went off the grid and are using solar or wind to power your household. No sense in supporting all the nasty coal fired power plants that belch more pollutants in one day than every single light duty diesel combined, or supporting nuke power whose effects will be here for several centuries to come.

      Glad your doing all YOU can do rather than wait for someone else to make a sacrifice for you.

      • 0 avatar
        JimZ

        So in your world, it’s a “sacrifice” to refrain from modifying your truck to belch out black clouds?

        • 0 avatar
          mason

          I never said anything about modifying anything. The discussion here is about others choosing what I can or can’t drive, and yes I do have a big problem with that.

          Not sure why so many of you assume because someone is “pro diesel” they are automatically lumped into the coal rollers category. I am completely against it, first and foremost for pollution reasons but also because they have managed to give the Diesel community such a black eye. They’re douche bags, just like the idiots running around in ragged out Hondas with 3ft tall wings and 20″ wheels and an exhaust that looks like it belongs on a class 8 truck.

  • avatar
    zerofoo

    Instead of asking government to arbitrarily price diesel fuel to put it out of reach of the bro-dozers, I ask that the external costs of that fuel be “baked in” to the price.

    I’m sure someone, somewhere, has calculated the cost of diesel air pollution. Take that number, divide it among all the gallons of diesel fuel sold in the US, add it to the per gallon price and let the market take care of the rest. Use those funds to clean up the environment.

    Any other way is asking the government to pick winners and losers – that never ends well.

  • avatar

    Everything or almost everything we consume in North America is hauled by a diesel powered truck with a Cummins or Caterpillar or Detroit or Paccar or Mercedes or Volvo motor under the hood.

    The vast majority of half ton (city truck) pick ups are powered by gas engines. The exception is the RAM Eco Diesel, and at the price of the option it almost does not make sense to pay the diesel engine premium.

    Most 3/4 and 1 ton pick ups with diesel motors are working trucks in one fashion or another, they are not economical, and usually carry or tow a load.

    There are areas in Canada where a Ram Eco Diesel is “dead” while a Hemi is the engine of choice.

    If you have to gross a GCW of 20,000 lbs on a daily basis with a pick up a diesel will do a better job that a gas engine with a bunch of turbos and comparable torque.

    Not many folks pay a premium for a diesel motor in any pick up just for the fun of having a diesel motor and miter cut stacks behind the cab.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      “If you have to gross a GCW of 20,000 lbs on a daily basis with a pick up a diesel will do a better job that a gas engine with a bunch of turbos and comparable torque.”

      Probably true. I have never driven trucks and never used them to haul things for a living, so I’ll take your word for it.

      But your quote contains a key phrase: “gross a GCW of 20,000 lbs on a daily basis”. Again, I’m no expert on heavy duty truck usage, but that sounds like a rig someone’s using for actual commercial purposes. Assuming these things put off an inordinate amount of pollution (and I agree that’s far from established, but let’s go with it for a moment), we can live with that from heavy-duty trucks that truly are used regularly for heavy duty. They’re a necessary component of the economy. But I’m sorry, the majority of these trucks aren’t used for any duty heavier than carting the owner’s Golden Retriever or a golf bag around in the back. Are they necessary? No.

      But we clearly need a better handle on whether there is actual harm from these rigs, and how much harm there is, before we start making decisions like restricting them or taxing their usage.

      • 0 avatar

        Diesel motors are an expensive option on all pick ups, the price of the option is an immediate entry barrier unles a customer absolutely needs a diesel in a pick up.

        A 20,000 GCW (gross combined weight) is what an heavy duty 1 ton pick up would pull with a 5th wheel trailer and a load, be it as simple as a Bobcat on a trailer.

        The challenge with modern pick ups is that they are mostly crew cabs with luxury car features.When they are not working, its easy to use them as cars although not economical at all.

        Back in the day when pick ups were dramatically more austere, and single cabs these folks had a car, and it was not fashionable to use the work truck for personal use. Its no longer the case, the work truck is used everyday.

        Also 3/4 and 1 ton pick ups are not as popular as 1/2 tons. You see a lot of 1500 series or F150 compared to 2500 or 3500 ot F250 or F350 on the road.

        Real HD trucks the GCW is at least 80,000 lbs on up, they will usually gross at around 100,000 lbs and get 7 mpg with a pulling a 53 foot trailer.

        Raise the price of fuel and we will pay more money for everything we consume, since its all hauled by a truck.

        In North America the 1/2 ton crew cab short box pick up, is the modern equivalent of the luxury land barge from decades ago, a ton of metal, and space, using a ton of gas.

        The worst offenders are gas powered 1/2 tons with a gas engines that are used as cars, and known as city trucks from the folks that need a 3/4 or 1 ton pick up to work.

        A 3/4 or 1 ton with a diesel and an Allison automatic is not a pleasant daily driver unless its working. Its almost like using a bobtail Pete to go buy milk.

      • 0 avatar
        mason

        “But I’m sorry, the majority of these trucks aren’t used for any duty heavier than carting the owner’s Golden Retriever or a golf bag around in the back”

        Freed, repeating the same misconceptions does not make it any truer. That seemingly only works for politicians.

        Im really trying but I don’t understand your logic. The average price of entry from gas to diesel (given the same truck, same trim package) is close to $8k. In my little corner of the world people in general are simply more frugal than that. I’m sure there are outliers that will check that option just because they can but they are the exception not the norm. If you were discussing full sized half ton trucks, I could see your point much easier. Half tons have plush suspension for such large vehicles and the upscale trims rival many luxury cars. But in general nobody wants a truck that rides rougher empty and costs more just to say they have an HD pickup (and a diesel to boot).

  • avatar
    ajla

    I don’t get why TTAC writers and commenters are so big on adding complexity to situations when a working solution is already in place.

    For such a small part of the market, we don’t need to change license laws or speed limits or fuel prices or the tax code or build a database or make diesel drivers walk around on stilts.

    Just increase the emission standards and enforce the current laws. Prices go up, demand goes down, vehicles get cleaner and all this other stuff mentioned doesn’t get turned into a cluster*ck.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      “I don’t get why TTAC writers and commenters are so big on adding complexity to situations when a working solution is already in place.”

      To stir the hive.

    • 0 avatar

      “Just increase the emission standards and enforce the current laws.”

      Law enforcement is a massive issue when it comes to emissions regulations as it’s a system based on self-reported numbers. However, true enforcement would come at the cost of all taxpayers, unless the EPA and CARB start charging automakers to perform those tests.

      All of this ignores the fact that even a vehicle under the current or future regulations will still emit pollutants. However, if you tax those fuels at a rate that pays for the average potential harm those fuels will cause when burned, we will be much further ahead.

      • 0 avatar
        danio3834

        What’s the cost/benefit compared to what we’re doing now? Is this an epidemic worth increasing the costs of basic good and services to vulnerable people?

        We’re constantly told that median wages have stagnated. Purchasing power has gone up…better take that away…

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          Both of the editorials today want to kill a roach with a grenade when the bug spray was doing fine.

          Honestly, I think a Paris-style 2020 outright ban on new diesels in the 1-ton and below vehicle classes would have less painful implementation than either of these plans.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        “Need a diesel-powered vehicle to get work done? Track it all and get a big, fat tax break at the end of the year.”

        If you keep that feature of your plan in all you’ve accomplished is increasing the complexity of the tax code. If you take it out then you’ve added a *major* additional expense to commercial freight.

        What is the actual goal here? Reduce personal use diesel? Reduce miles travelled? Have Peterbilts run on gasoline?

        By your own admission the emission regulation system in place is working successfully. There is no need to get creative.

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          “If you keep that feature of your plan in all you’ve accomplished is increasing the complexity of the tax code.”

          I disagree – that’s not difficult at all. If you want to write off depreciation on any vehicle as it is, you have to record the personal versus business miles used. And vehicles truly used for commercial purposes have all their expenses recorded anyway – wouldn’t be all that difficult to set up a tax credit like Mark’s talking about.

      • 0 avatar
        Big Al from Oz

        Mark,
        Just by applying an equal standard of particulate emissions to a gasoline engine to be as good as a diesel is a great start.

      • 0 avatar
        TrailerTrash

        “a rate that pays for the average potential harm those fuels will cause”

        Mark…here is the real problem with your, I presume Canadian, government taxing trust.
        Governments are tricky thieve dens.
        I remember when the lottery was first devised all those years ago. It was to fund the schools. OK. But what did happen was the schools didn’t see the benefits. The government took what it had been given and spent it elsewhere.
        Its a scheme.
        Government loves you to think taxing is the end all.

        Try, but they will find away around any safety net you build. If you write a law that prevents the government from taking the tax savings and spending it elsewhere, they will find a way around it. If the tax is supposed to go towards roads…they will take the money they were giving to roads and spend it in a new way.
        It always happens this way.
        It never ends.
        It just gives them more money to waste.

        • 0 avatar
          highdesertcat

          “Governments are tricky thieve dens.”

          TT, we live in a world of thieves and liars. My AP-news feed informed me that GM has stopped selling SUVs because the mpg number on the window sticker was wrong.

          Hyundai wasn’t the only automaker lying.

          Thieves and liars.

          That why my slogan is to “do unto others BEFORE they do unto you.”

          • 0 avatar
            SC5door

            Maybe you should read it better; the stop sale is because the numbers are MIS PRINTED ON THE LABELS. GM didn’t report them wrong, whomever typed in the numbers for the labels did it wrong.

            This isn’t even comparable to the H/K, Ford and Mitsu fuel economy numbers game.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Ha ha! Hyundai could have said that their numbers were typed wrong! In either case, the numbers did not match the real-world mileage.

            The others lied, so did GM.

            An automaker doesn’t stop sales over a typing error. But they do stop sales on account of lying to the public.

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            How very Christian of you.

        • 0 avatar
          Daniel J

          Exactly

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            “That why my slogan is to “do unto others BEFORE they do unto you.””

            No Christianity there.

          • 0 avatar
            Kenmore

            “No Christianity there.”

            Are you guys serious? Read up on the Reformation. A good executioner could keep the fire going around a “heretic” for half an hour before the screaming stopped.

            That was important because crowd appeal.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            Ha ha! Same with the inquisition. Watch The History of the World. Part I.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @Kenmore – Christ was anti-establishment and was against executions. He stopped a group of men from stoning an adulteress. “He who is without sin cast the first stone,”

            The use of religion or religious beliefs as a means of controlling or placating the masses has occurred since the dawn of time.

            Why was there a need for “Reformation”?

            What sin had heretics performed?

            More often than not they did not agree with the church or state.

            Often church and state functions as one.

            Why did Pinochet’s Regime abduct union leaders and torture and kill them?

            Operation Condor was in a way an “Inquisition” of the “right” backed by the CIA.

            Evil perpetrated by man against man isn’t new and it gets rationalized by almost any means possible.

            Back to Christianity. Ironically the ones who tend to use it as a justification for atrocities don’t quote passages attributed to Jesus Christ. They love the old Testament. Eye for an eye and all of that. Christ was “turn the other cheek”, “love your fellow man as you love yourself.”

            It is easy to target the cloak used to cover up greed, lust, power and control.

            Christianity, Islam, Homeland Security, Aryan superiority ad nauseam all were used to justify atrocity.

            The list is miles long.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            Most “Christians\'” familiarity with the the Bible starts and ends with a few verses from Leviticus and Deuteronomy.

      • 0 avatar
        smartascii

        The law enforcement part of this is a component, sure, but the original emissions requirements are where things get expensive enough to price “because I want to” buyers out of the market. There’s a reason the Cummins option costs $8k, similar to the Powerstrike and Duramax. Emissions regulations also make the usability and reliability of these trucks worse than they used to be, and there’s a further cost to remove the emissions equipment from the trucks (which is increasingly difficult at the electronics level since equipment removal throws the truck into limp mode). The small number of diesel truck buyers who go to all the trouble to get their trucks to be dirty is really small, and it’s really more of an annoyance than a universal health issue at that point.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      Ajla, when I look at my local police station and see a lot of these bro-dozer type trucks in the “employees only” parking lot, the answer of “why aren’t the laws enforced” becomes very clear.

  • avatar
    danio3834

    Or you know, just continue with the emissions controls so everyone can have what they want without necessarily skyrocketing the cost of fuel and by extension the goods that are delivered with it.

  • avatar
    TOTitan

    I guess Id better enjoy the mind bending torque of my 335d while I can

  • avatar
    PeriSoft

    “We can have a long, philosophical discussion about how regulation kills business”

    I have a real problem with this. I run a business, and regulation is what makes it *possible*.

    Without regulation, any business ends up in a race to the bottom – making batteries that set things on fire, putting plastic in the baby formula. Without regulation it’s impossible for honest people to compete in business.

    If it weren’t for US and EU safety regulations, my simulator company would be history, because I refuse to ship an unsafe product. It would be a TON cheaper if you made what I make but didn’t bother to make it safe. Without regulation, someone would, and I’d have a choice: Sell something that would kill people, or go out of business.

    This tired canard about regulation being “bad for business” and lack of regulation being “good for business” is absurd and an oversimplification usually employed by people who care about ideology, not business.

    As a businessman, I dread the idea of a laissez-fair market. It’s anathema to me as an entrepreneur.

    Excessive regulation? Yeah, that’s bad. But saying regulation is bad because it can strangle business is like saying water is bad because you can drown.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      The other aspect that the anti-regulation types never seem to bring up is that without regulations, the “market” would actually cease to exist as we know it. The larger competitors would, as you say, simply use their market position to completely eliminate competition. Don’t like how safe our product is? Tough…everyone else gave up making it, so you’re stuck.

      The anti-regulation types are actually either knowing or unknowingly shilling for massive corporations.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @PeriSoft – neoliberals love laissez-fair. Milton Friedman was the high priest of that movement. Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld were all proponents. Pinochet was also a proponent.
      A lack of regulation allows for huge swings in market value and adds a considerable amount of instability. That works out very well for the extremely rich since they are in a position to take advantage of those fluctuations. The small guy cannot compete. Any country that has adopted laissez-fair in the market whether it be left or right or libertarian or totalitarian has seen a lot of new billionaires and a market increase in the lower class.

  • avatar
    NoGoYo

    You definitely have a point with the age of trucks, many construction fleets round here are still using Macks from the 80s and who knows how old these Peterbilt 379s and Kenworth W900s are? I can imagine the old tri-axle Macks have little to no emissions controls on board.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      “many construction fleets round here are still using Macks from the 80s ”

      True in my area as well. But that is primarily because these vintage trucks cost much less to maintain and rebuild, plus they’re paid for.

      In cities and states that require annual emissions inspections, like El Paso, TX, or California, people love to hold onto their antique rides because they don’t have to worry about emission requirements.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @NoGoYo – that all depends.
      In harsher environments old machinery no longer gets used in any form of production capacity because it gets too expensive to maintain and unreliable to use in contract work (i.e. the more you produce the more you get paid.).
      I rarely ever see old commercial trucks in any capacity. Some snow clearing outfits love to buy worn out logging/construction equipment because it is cheap to buy and clearing and hauling snow isn’t all that hard.
      Warmer temperate parts of the USA and areas with good paved road networks can extract a long usable life out of a commercial truck. It doesn’t happen in areas where it gets cold or most work is done on gravel roads.

  • avatar
    Daniel J

    I’m not convinced that that the real issue here is buyers who buy out of luxury. The real problem is trucks on the road used for commercial use. If we charge more for fuel, it will take decades for fleets to be swapped out. If anything, owner operators can’t stay on the road because it’s too expensive. Then prices on delivered goods go up.

    Let’s say we do add more tax. Is that money really going to go for cleanup? Heck no. It will get earmarked for education, healthcare, or some God knows what pet project like studying immigration patterns of some obscure bird.

  • avatar
    ect

    Mark, you and Jack have both fallen into the bureaucratic trap of wanting to regulate the process, rather than the outcome.

    The modern “best practice” approach to regulation is to define the required outcome, rather than try to prescribe a specific process that one hopes will achieve that outcome.

    In the case of fuel-burning devices, be they motor vehicles or power plants, that would mean defining what can come out of the tailpipe or smokestack., and leaving industry free to figure out how to meet that standard.

    So, government should define what can come out of the tailpipe. Period. Then, whether a truck burns gas, diesel, biofuel or pixie dust becomes irrelevant, and technological progress is encouraged.

    I remember when regulations mandated sealed-beam headlights. Even in my teens, better technologies were available, but couldn’t be used because regulations put in place in the 1920’s or ’30s wouldn’t allow it. Fortunately, that finally changed.

    • 0 avatar
      derekson

      “I remember when regulations mandated sealed-beam headlights. Even in my teens, better technologies were available, but couldn’t be used because regulations put in place in the 1920’s or ’30s wouldn’t allow it. Fortunately, that finally changed.”

      Except that today’s lighting regulations are even farther behind the state of the art than sealed beams were back then…

  • avatar
    BobinPgh

    There were a number of oil-fired power stations in the US back in the 70s. Most of them were replaced by nuclear power plants back then. This is one case where nuclear power actually helped us end dependence on foreign oil (for the application of generating electricity). Now diesel fuel is used only for emergency generators. Is there a possibility we could have something like the Ford Nucleon nuclear powered truck in our future?

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      I’d settle for electric cars powered by nuclear powerplants.

      The waste issue isn’t much fun, but it’s easier to solve than global climate change. We need to get back to nuclear power.

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      “Is there a possibility we could have something like the Ford Nucleon nuclear powered truck in our future?”

      no, because nobody wants to deal with a steam engine in a car.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    If diesel emissions are strictly regulated, then the added cost of the emissions control equipment will serve as the equivalent of a tax that limits demand. (In that sense, Volkswagen was essentially a tax evader and is being punished accordingly.)

  • avatar
    thegamper

    Sign me up for anything that gets trucks off the road. I am not sure how the pickup truck became such a lifestyle vehicle choice of millions that have no use for them (with a disproportionate share of asshats to boot), but its out of control and needs to change. I think we need an ad campaign “Sweet truck man…..sorry to hear about your tiny d***” or…”hauling air like its nobody’s business in one of the most densly populated areas of the country”.

  • avatar
    laserwizard

    When a Gov’t official lectures us that we don’t need what we buy, it is time to take up arms and to make him/her look down the barrel of what our Founding Fathers told us is our right to have.

    Freedom of choice should never be given away so that we can make leftist swine Environazis happy.

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