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New Bill Passed!!!

solid101solid101 Posts: 12
edited March 2014 in Audi had just post the latest bill signed by the senates on the issue about to retire classic cars along with other junks, this is a matter that should concern all car hobbyists, please read the article carefully, if A-6, C130 and M113 and alike are still good enough to serve at front line, what's the point to retire a few well-maintain cars which are also the living proof of American history? As for Imports,

a '86 Ferrari are still quite attractive and fun might be force off the road as well, this might also affect the 2nd hand car market, my

'89 Accord still runs well and serves as the back up car now, but once the bill is passed, it's as good as dead, please think about the possible outcomes and discuss it.


  • ndancendance Posts: 323
    at the risk of being pilloried, I find it hard to get my knickers in a twist over scrappage programs. I suppose it's because I'm not trying to restore a 1985 Toyota truck or something similar.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,376
    Am I missing something here?

    It sounds like this is an incentive program whereby an owner of an old junk heap can get money for it and use the cash as they please, hopefully to buy a more fuel efficient car.

    I do not see anywhere where the police come to your house and seize your classic car, or where Ralph Nader forces you to buy an electric car at gunpoint.

    I also cannot imagine anyone but a certified dingbat junking a 60s era muscle car, or any of the old cars mentioned in this "alert", for the incentive money.

    Whoever wrote that petition really needs to learn to stop writing hysterical prose. Their credibility goes right down the drain. Verrryyy bad PR! This makes me want to support the incentives even more, not fight them.

    Actually, this program sounds pretty good if you read it carefully.

    For one thing, you have to be the registered owner, and also you can't turn in more than one car a year. So no dirty dealing going on, or car-junking epidemic. But if you are a non-profit, you can junk as many cars as you like, so charities make out on that.

    Also, if you junk an old beater and then buy a fuel efficient car, they give you MORE money for that. So not only are these old death traps off the road but it stiumlates the new car economy.

    I think old car buffs are being pretty short-sighted and selfish here, even though I know their hearts may be in the right place as far as cars go. But not as far as people go, IMO.

    I did a story about this some years ago when I think it was Atlantic Richfield did an experimental program (financed it themselves). I went to the yard where the cars were being turned in. These "operative" cars were frightening, simply frightening. I honestly didn't see anything of value being scrapped...okay, maybe a hubcap here and a tail light lens there, but these weren't classics or collectibles, just old 4-door clunkers and rusted out coupes that were totally trashed.

    PS: If you want to know what's wrong with America, read the COMMENTS at the bottom. Nobody read the freakin' bill! They are all hysterical. They think it's mandatory and the government is out to take their car away! Unbelievable....3 or 4 got it but the rest didn't.

    Well, of course it's voluntary, that's why they call it an "incentive".

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  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    SEMA sounds like a lively group, raring to go. I'll join as soon as I put the gun rack on my pickup.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,376
    More like spinning their wheels than rarin' to go if you ask me. Leave the gun, bring a word processor.

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  • I don't understand why the laws requiring a car to pass a safety inspection is not enforced.

    While I understand part of the rationale for the bill, the risk of a bill like this is it gets the camel's nose under the tent. Like gun control, they start with an inch, and then want the whole enchilada.

    It will have an impact on the parts availability for the collector car market, as people will donate a lot of old cars to charities who have no limitation on the number junked.

    I also disagree with using tax dollars for this type of social engineering. If they want to get unsafe cars off the road, start inspecting them rather than passing the buck to the taxpayers.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    Yes, from the tone of the comments I did see the analogy to gun control.

    I don't live in a state with an inspection program but I'd imagine that the taxpayer/consumer ends up paying for it no matter how it's structured, either with tax dollars or by paying fees. The idea behind these programs is that unsafe, low-mpg cars already cost society money in a number of ways: smog, property damage, injuries and deaths. Pay someone to take one off the road and you may be money ahead.
  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    I'm a SEMA member (sans the gun rack), so I get regular monthly updates on pending legislation throughout the US. Enthusiasts have helped to amend or defeat many such proposals over the years, and kudos to SEMA for keeping the flame lit.

    The problem lies not in getting gross polluters and unsafe vehicles off the highway -- that's a good thing, and something that we all agree should be done. The problem is when overzealous politicians, backed by insurance companies, add verbiage that prevents classic cars from being restored by scrapping (not recovering) their parts. Also, if the entire chassis is destroyed, it not only prevents the original car from being restored, it means that none of its parts can be used for other classic cars who may be in the process of restoration or need replacement parts after being involved in an accident.

    One of SEMA's most compelling points is that classic cars add extremely little pollution, due in part to their small numbers and also to the fact that they tend to be much better maintained than the average family car. Instead of a scrappage program, a well-regulated vehicle inspection program would serve the same purpose without any of the disadvantages to enthusiasts.

    One final note -- old cars are cheaper by nature, and there are a lot of people who simply can't afford to drop 24 large on a new Regal or Camry. These people need cars they can afford to buy and maintain, and poorly written scrappage bills fail to take these people into account.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,376
    I think if SEMA wants support, it is imperative that it cease the distortion and hysteria of petitions like this. Who writes this stuff, people abducted by aliens? They have grossly misrepresented the facts, and seem to pander to mob mentality. Look at all the misunderstanding they created in the "comments" section. Those folks don't have a clue about the real bill at hand, do they? They think the government is going to take their uncle's Camaro away! Great, that's just wonderful public education.

    This program is completely voluntary! If a person wants to get rid of his clunker and get some cash, then what business is that of SEMA? Obviously, the poor person doesn't want a bad car anymore than you do.

    This is just such typical dreary and predictable anti-government rant...."oh, they (who are THEY?) want to take our classic (what CLASSICS--1978 rusted out Buick Skyhawks?)

    What a crock! What a waste of time (I'll agree with you there).

    It should be pretty obvious to ANY car enthusiast that any 70s or 80s American car that is bad enough to be scrapped is certainly not worth the cost of restoration, and that any car worth saving will be saved. I sincerely doubt that any member of SEMA has ever restored a rusted out 1978 Skyhawk. Why would they?

    Last of all, the argument that this threatens the old car hobby is totally specious, since the old car hobby was built on the concept of scarcity giving value to the old cars. Old cars were scrapped in huge numbers in the 40s (wartime salvage) 50s and 60s, and yet we have tons of these old cars left. There are MILLIONS of 70s and 80s cars around. They won't suddenly disappear because the worst of them are scrapped for $700 or some such amount. The good will survive, same as always.

    If you were to preserve the nearly worthless cars of the 70s and 80s, they would only be worth even less in the future, with so many of them around. If you doubt this, look at the difference in values between 1958 Corvettes and 1978 Corvettes.

    Those few worthwhile models in the 70s and 80s will be saved regardless, because they have value now.

    A 1977 Buick Century now has a Kelley Blue Book wholesale value of $750. Does SEMA really think this car will ever be worth anything in the future, having failed to bring more than $750 after 25 years? This polluting rusted out heap is a classic car?

    I'm as big a car nut as anybody, and I see no threat whatsoever to the classic car hobby. If anything, it will give old cars a better name.

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  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    But I agree with Shifty that virtually all the comments on the SEMA site show a real lack of clear thinking and a reluctance to read and understand the issues.

    I guess the idea is to scare the whee out of some state assemblyman, but if that's a representative cross-section of the old car hobby then I'll be armed the next time I go to a car show.

    I will say I'm also part of an industry with a huge lobby that raises its voice now and then, and very effectively. All we hear from them is that our livelihood is in danger and that we need to lean on our Congressperson. They're a little light on the details even when the issue is complex, and of course they're anything but objective. SEMA isn't breaking new ground here.

    But solid101 doesn't do SEMA any favors by coming in here with an hysterical, poorly reasoned and poorly typed posting. He's probably on SEMA's government affairs committee and doing his job the best he can but he needs a quick course in how to get the word out.

    (a) ESTABLISHMENT- The Secretary shall establish a program, to be known as the `National Motor Vehicle Efficiency Improvement Program,' under which the Secretary shall provide grants to States to operate programs to offer owners of passenger automobiles and light-duty trucks manufactured in model years more than 15 years prior to the fiscal year in which appropriations are made under subsection (d) to provide financial incentives to scrap such automobiles and to replace them with automobiles with higher fuel efficiency.

    (b) STATE PLAN- Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of an appropriations act containing funds authorized under subsection (d), to be eligible to receive funds under the program, the Governor of a State shall submit to the Secretary a plan to carry out a program under this subtitle in that State.

    (c) ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA- The Secretary shall approve a State plan and provide the funds under subsection (d), if the State plan--

    (1) requires that all passenger automobiles and light-duty trucks turned in be scrapped;
    (2) requires that all passenger automobiles and light-duty trucks turned in be currently registered in the State in order to be eligible;
    (3) requires that all passenger automobiles and light-duty trucks turned in be operational at the time that they are turned in;
    (4) restricts automobile owners (except not-for-profit organizations) from turning in more than one passenger automobile and one light-duty truck in a 12-month period;
    (5) provides an appropriate payment to the person recycling the scrapped passengerautomobile or light-duty truck for each turned-in passenger automobile or light-duty truck;
    (6) provides a minimum payment to the automobile owner for each passenger automobile and light-duty truck turned in; and
    (7) provides, in addition to the payment under paragraph (6), an additional credit that may be redeemed by the owner of the turned-in passenger automobile or light-duty truck at the time of purchase of new fuel-efficient automobile.

    (d) AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS- There are hereby authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary to carry out this section such sums as may be necessary, to remain available until expended.

    (e) ALLOCATION FORMULA- The amounts appropriated pursuant to subsection (d) shall be allocated among the States on the basis of the population of the States as contained in the most recent reliable census data available from the Bureau of the Census, Department of Commerce, for all States at the time that the Secretary needs to compute shares under this subsection.

    (f) DEFINITIONS- In this section:

    (1) AUTOMOBILE- The term `automobile' has the meaning given such term in section 32901(3) of title 49, United States Code.
    (2) Fuel-efficient automobile-

    (A) The term `fuel-efficient automobile' means a passenger automobile or a light-duty truck that has an average fuel economy greater than the average fuel economy standard prescribed pursuant to section 32902 of title 49, United States Code, or other law, applicable to such passenger automobile or light-duty truck.
    (B) The term `average fuel economy' has the meaning given such term in section 32901(5) of title 49, United States Code.
    (C) The term `average fuel economy standard' has the meaning given such term in section 32901(6) of title 49, United States Code.
    (D) The term `fuel economy' has the meaning given such term in section 32901(10) of title 49, United States Code.

    (3) LIGHT-DUTY TRUCK- The term `light-duty truck' means an automobile that is not a passenger automobile. Such term shall include a pickup truck, a van, or a four-wheel-drive general utility vehicle, as those terms are defined in section 600.002-85 of title 40, Code of Federal Regulations.
    (4) PASSENGER AUTOMOBILE- The term `passenger automobile' has the meaning given such term by section 32901(16) of title 49, United States Code.
    (5) SECRETARY- The term `Secretary' means the Secretary of Energy.
    (6) STATE- The term `State' means any of the several States and the District of Columbia.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,376
    Well, okay' betta way to look at the Bill....thanks!

    Reading it over, it seems fine to me. I notice item #5 says that the person "recycling" the vehicle is also paid. So the owner gets paid, the recycler gets paid, and if the owner buys a fuel efficient vehicle, he gets paid again. Also, I presume that the recycler gets to resell the parts he takes off? If so, then SEMA really doesn't have an argument on any level. If the govmint requires that the vehicle be literally "recycled", that is, all parts melted or shredded, then yes, I do see where some parts on some cars will be lost. Whether those parts are of any value to "collectible" cars is quite debatable.

    Anyway, let's presume this program is a whopping success and 10% of all old cars are scrapped, being worth less than the grant money. If they were worth more than the grant money, nobody would turn them in, right? Then let's presume these 10% are totally scrapped and no parts are saved (again, this might not be true). Then let's presume that 10% of that 10% are collectible cars in some fashion. So what you have is a 1% loss of parts cars.

    What's the gripe here? Who is actually an aggrieved party? All I see is winners:

    owner wins
    recycler wins
    people who buy recycled metal win
    if owner buys a fuel efficient car, he wins again
    asthmatics win
    loss to collector car market is minimal.

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  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    is allowed to resell the recovered parts, I see nothing wrong with it at all -- nor should SEMA. In fact, since SEMA stands for "Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association" and many of its members remanufacture parts for old cars, you would think that it would be in their own self-interest to see as many old cars destroyed as possible.

    As you say, more heat than light -- but that's the nature of advocacy, isn't it?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,376
    Advocacy is often passionate, yes, but good advocacy has got its facts straight. You won't see Ralph Nader getting his facts wrong, even if you don't agree with the conclusions he makes from those facts. But the numbers are A-1 in his research.

    There's a difference between persuading and misleading.

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  • As usual you make some excellent points, Shiftright. Your comments about the Atlantic Richfield experiment were particularly interesting to me, since I never read an account about the condition of the cars that were actually scrapped under that program. Nevertheless, I also agree with the comments expressed by jsylvester and badtoy in their respective messages #6 and #8. History suggests that well intentioned social engineering programs often yield unintended side effects and negative tradeoffs, sometimes for reasons that were not apparent when the initiatives were enacted. Further, there is the risk that this bill could be highjacked by special interest lobbies or inept politicians, perhaps in the future if not at conception.

    I believe the marketplace, in conjunction with safety inspections, is the best arbiter of when cars should be scrapped. Further, I do not accept the notion that everyone wins with this bill. For example, taxpayers could be net losers, as could some of the working poor. One could therefore argue that there could be more losers than winners. For these reasons, I subscribe to the notion of "better the devil you know than the one you don't know" on this bill.

    Finally, on more than one occasion in recent years both the French and Italian governments sponsored incentive programs to persuade owners of older cars to trade them in on new ones. Has anyone read objective accounts about how these programs fared?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,376
    I just can't grasp your logic here...I'm trying, though.

    How can poor people lose if they are turning in totally despicable wretched worthless cars? The incentives are never a LOT of money, we already know this. What could it be, $500-$1,000 at most? So poor people aren't dummies. They are not going to junk a perfectly good car for $1,000 because they know they can't buy a perfectly good car for $1,000.

    The only special interest group I see here is SEMA, and unless SEMA is concocting one of those Commie-Amish-Pope in Rome conspiracy theories, I think they are just trying to create artifical Boogie men to sabotage this so as to get you to support their paranoia.

    The thing is so simple. You wanna scrap your piece of crap old car, then scrap it and here's $500 bucks. You don't want to, you don't have to.
    This isn't gun control, or bussing. This is 100% voluntary. It's like recycling your coke bottles.

    So, okay, what feasible, plausible thing can go wrong here?

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  • ndancendance Posts: 323
    I'm kind of two minds on issues like this. I see the point (and the lack of real cost) of crushing junk...on the other hand the laws of unintended consequences in terms of 'social engineering' are not trifling on occasion.

    I'd be happier if the *real* environmental and social cost could be built into the cost of items (and activities I guess) as best as could be estimated.

    For example....

    Rather than charging to throw tires away, there should be a cost tacked onto new tires sales which is then recouped when thrown away. This would encourage proper disposal and put the real cost on the tire consumer. (It amazes me how many old tires you can run into when out and about).

    Nukes should have the entire decommissioning cost built into the electricity rate structure and the money should be held in a separate account.

    Cars should be taxed yearly for the amount of pollution actually emitted. Visual inspection is stupid and just reflects cheaping out on analysis equipment. Simply measure the physical output of pollutants over time, assign a dollar value, charge the owner that much. The percentage of pollution is immaterial.

    The tire concept could be applied to cars. If there really is a cost to automobiles to everyone on the backend (due to safety, pollution or some other issue), charge that amount (like a bottle deposit) on purchase, retrieve that amount on final disposal.

    Most road construction expense should be generated from fuel taxes (there being a nice kind of proportionality there). Since everyone benefits from transport systems (not just drivers) it would make some sense to pull some of the money from a general budget.

    "So, okay, what feasible, plausible thing can go wrong here? "

    A problem I can see with scrappage concepts is that the money is coming from somewhere (I feel my wallet tugging) and I'll bet is fraught with strange backroom deal-making in terms of pollution credits, desires to sell new cars to replace old ones, etc. If the money were collected up front, I would be %100 in favor of the concept. As it is, the involuntary part is the funding angle.
  • speedshiftspeedshift Posts: 1,598
    But junk cars have their own social costs. We pay one way or another. The only question is which has less costs, social engineering or the market. It sounds great to just let the market do its thing, but there's plenty of behind-the-scenes deal making there too.

    How do you guys feel about the New Deal? ;-)
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,594
    Nothing new.
    If you think this hasn't been tried, you're wrong.
    This kind of thing never makes it to the house.
    There are way too many big names and companies who will put a large amount of resources, which includes lobbyists to keep it from ever getting past the house. Who ever wrote that is just trying to get a rise out of folks.
    It'll never happen, because too many people would be affected, the govt won't put out money to compensate them and because of that, they'd be in a war of constitutional rights pertaining to siezure of your property, which has already been an issue on that kind of bill.
    It may become a reality one day if all the do gooder enviromentalists that take the bus everywhere have their way.
    And as far as SEMA advocating that, they'd be cutting their own throat. The same people that support SEMA are the same people that work on and drive those same vehicles.
    I own a 70 3/4 ton 4x4 and will never part with it. I don't care what laws they make or decide.
    It is mine, I totally restored it and there is no way they can tell me that I can't have it.
    And as far as that coming from SEMA, I have serious doubts about that. Although, I'll have to check with a source to see.
  • You're right, Shiftright; I erred in categorizing the working poor as net losers from this Bill.
    I stand by my other points, however.

    Also, I agree with ndance, to the extent that if the costs associated with pollution, safety, and recycling were to be addressed through legislation, then a front end tax would be preferable to the proposed Bill, for the reasons he cited.
  • ndancendance Posts: 323
    "I'll give up my 70 3/4 ton 4x4 when you take it from my cold, dead hands.".

    Kinda catchy, don't ya think?

    That's based on the mumble mumble Amendment to the Constitution.

    Honestly, all it would take would be Japanese-style safety inspection and licensing expenses and those 2003 Chevy trucks would start looking mighty good. I think it's pretty unlikely, but stranger things have happened.
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    how much of a pollution credit do these companies get per car for taking them off the streets? Does it vary by car? For example, a ragged-out Cadillac 500 is going to put out more pollutants than a relatively well-maintained Dart slant six!

    Let's suppose I let them have my '68 Dart, which has gone maybe 3000 miles in the last 4 years, if that. I'm sure by the time they expelled the energy to scrap it or do whatever with it, plus the corresponding amount of pollution they would be allowed to generate in exchange for taking my menace to society off the road, Mother Earth would still be a lot better off if I just held onto the damn thing and drove it occasionally. I'd be giving them a car that hardly ever gets used, and therefore hardly ever pollutes, and giving them free reign to spew God-only-knows-what into the atmosphere. That's actually adding to pollution, not reducing it.

    Even if I depended on that Dart for daily transportation, I don't think scrapping it and getting a new car would help the environment that much. Not only would some factory be given free reign to pollute, but somebody's got to build that new car for me. And a by-product of that creation is going to be pollution. And when it's time to replace THAT car, just think of the problem with all those plastics, alloys, etc, that aren't going to just break down and return to the Earth like good old fashioned steel and iron did. Heck, years down the road when my Intrepid dies, I might actually be doing the environment a favor by driving my Dart again, instead of buying another brand-new car! ;-)
  • 0patience0patience Oregon CoastPosts: 1,594
    Actually, after reading the article from the link here and the article on SEMA and trying to locate any info on it anywhere else, the article on SEMA says the bill is going to the house and has NOT been passed yet.
    The one person who would have the best insight on it, is on vacation. So I am withholding any validity of this until then.
  • Excellent points, andre1969!
  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    haven't heard anyone define SEMA's motivation in trying to defeat this bill.

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,376
    Seems obvious to me what the motivation is.

    Okay, so what I see here is, for one thing, some objection to tax dollars being used to fund this....that is the "involuntary part". Okay, that's a good objection.

    Regarding building in the cost of pollution--were this actually done across the board, and done ACCURATELY, assessing TRUE environmental costs, many items we now consume would be so expensive we might not buy them (like gasoline). In effect, our governments and corporations have been making heavy withdrawals from Mother Nature for some time now and not paying her back. What seems to be in order along with some of these clever "pollution taxes" would be changes in lifestyle. Another subject!

    I don't see polluting" as a right that you can pay for, since I don't want you polluting even if you paid for it. So the pollution credits is a troubling concept. I need to think more about that one.

    Ultimately, I don't have an issue with giving up things for society if a serious situation requires it, as long as this is done lawfully and equitably. I've give up my old car or truck but I want two things: some compensation for my property, and two, assurance that some fat cat's old truck is also taken from him. We don't have horses crapping in the streets anymore or slop buckets tossed out windows. So maybe one day old cars and truck have to go.

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  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    But you still didn't answer my question.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,376
    You mean about SEMA? I can see a number of motivations, both economic and poltical.

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,376
    I don't want to get into politics because most people can't handle it. But economics, it seems to be that SEMA members (or leadership) is worried about their livelihood a lot more than about old cars.

    So what I was driving at is that I see the ulterior motive of SEMA but I don't see the "other side's" plot to destroy old cars. I can't imagine what benefit some group out there would derive from smashing up people's old cars.

    I'm for anything that would take a dangerous or polluting car off the road, but if it isn't dangerous or polluting then leave them be.

    No one should be driving gross polluters or dangerous cars, and voluntary scrapping could alleviate this. If not, you don't have to take people's cars away, just make the folks take them off the road and fix them. People need to be responsible for their actions, rich or poor.

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  • badtoybadtoy Posts: 368
    That's why a well-regulated inspection program is far superior in my view to a scrappage program. Of course, look at what California did with OBD-II.

    Conspiracy theories aside, politicians don't just pass laws they think are designed for the good of the commonwealth -- they frequently support them on the basis of campaign contributions and political power grabs. I am far more skeptical of politicians than I am of business organizations, because I know why businesses do what they do -- but not always our representatives.
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