Goodbye Personal Mobility
The Market Ticker - Commentary on The Capital Markets
Logging in or registering will improve your experience here
Main Navigation
Full-Text Search & Archives
Legal Disclaimer

The content on this site is provided without any warranty, express or implied. All opinions expressed on this site are those of the author and may contain errors or omissions.

NO MATERIAL HERE CONSTITUTES "INVESTMENT ADVICE" NOR IS IT A RECOMMENDATION TO BUY OR SELL ANY FINANCIAL INSTRUMENT, INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO STOCKS, OPTIONS, BONDS OR FUTURES.

The author may have a position in any company or security mentioned herein. Actions you undertake as a consequence of any analysis, opinion or advertisement on this site are your sole responsibility.


Market charts, when present, used with permission of TD Ameritrade/ThinkOrSwim Inc. Neither TD Ameritrade or ThinkOrSwim have reviewed, approved or disapproved any content herein.

The Market Ticker content may be sent unmodified to lawmakers via print or electronic means or excerpted online for non-commercial purposes provided full attribution is given and the original article source is linked to. Please contact Karl Denninger for reprint permission in other media, to republish full articles, or for any commercial use (which includes any site where advertising is displayed.)

Submissions or tips on matters of economic or political interest may be sent "over the transom" to The Editor at any time. To be considered for publication your submission must include full and correct contact information and be related to an economic or political matter of the day. All submissions become the property of The Market Ticker.

Considering sending spam? Read this first.

2021-03-05 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Editorial , 744 references Ignore this thread
Goodbye Personal Mobility
[Comments enabled]

The era of personal freedom is over.

I won't live to see it finally die, in all probability, and if I do I'm not sure I will care.  I'm 57; by the time it really matters I'll be too decrepit to give a crap when all is said and done.

But my daughter, she's ****ed.  She's talked about -- and ordered her life -- to be able to travel and enjoy both the country and, until the raving, rabid idiocy of the Coof-Karens started, other nations as well as a young woman.  She's done that because unlike 99% of the young "adults" today, who aren't really adults at all, she's figured out that "The land of the free" is an illusion and worse, not long from now she won't be able to do those things at all.

It's not that there will be "vaccine passports" and similar stupidity; no, that may well happen, but that's not the problem.

It's what you're going to read about right here.

The thing you have to understand about Volkswagen is that it's always been after world domination. The 2021 Volkswagen ID.4 isn't just a new electric car—it's simply the latest example of those plans in action.

Previous incarnations of Volkswagen, and the Volkswagen Group writ large, meant brand-buying sprees until Bugatti, Lamborghini and Ducati were under the same umbrella; wild concept cars with no business model attached; economy hatchbacks and $2 million hypercars in the same portfolio; and aggressive plans to finally get Americans to buy diesel cars like the rest of the world. When those plans were thwarted by our emissions regulations, orders were given to break the rules, resulting in one of the biggest scandals in modern corporate history and, subsequently, VW's aggressive, industry-leading pivot to zero-emission electric vehicles as a mea culpa. 

This is a fairly typical "car review" coming from an online rag that, no surprise, writes car reviews.

Buried in all of the prose, as is always the case, is the slam: Personal mobility is ending in the United States.  100 years of the ability to go where you want, when you want, literally anywhere within the confines of Continental United States for any lawful purpose or no purpose at all is ending.  It will become more and more difficult to maintain over the next 10 years and become effectively impossible within 20 to 30 years for people of ordinary means.

This is literally the end of America going all the way back to the Founders.

You see a horse needed something to eat and water to drink.  An EV needs electricity; highly-refined energy at the highest commonly-used form, and it needs it in size.  The networks necessary to deliver that can be gated off to you at any time by corporate or government interests, and if they are you're ****ed.  If something goes wrong on your journey, delaying you and increasing that consumption -- you're ****ed.

The guaranteed-return range of basically every EV, even the most-expensive and expansive, is about 100 miles.  The non-return range can be around 300, but that doesn't matter when you get down to it because it presumes charging at a rational rate is available at the other end -- or wherever you wind up.  It sounds like 30 minutes of charging time for a "top off" isn't so bad and it isn't when there is one vehicle that wants to be charged in a given place.  Now pull into a Pilot or Love's on any day, on any highway and count the number of cars that pull to the pump in a 30 minute period.  Only one of those vehicles for each pump fills if its electric.

The rest are stranded.

Places like this area, Gatlinburg and the Smoky Mountains, are economically done.  75% of the people who come here to vacation or just screw around live more than 200 miles away, the maximum reasonable non-return range for such a trip.  Indeed the radius of "reasonable" only extends as far as Nashville, Chattanooga, Asheville and similar.  Even Atlanta and Lexington are dangerously close to the edge of that and, in the event of a serious traffic delay in either hot or cold weather will leave you stranded due to parasitic loads on your battery pack.

Before the Coof and its attendant bull**** I typically put 30-50,000 miles on my vehicles each and every year.  I can go as far as I'd like, limited only by required maintenance every few thousand miles and with 5 minute interruptions every 500 to fill the fuel tank.  I need to******roughly as often (and sometimes more, especially if I'm drinking coffee) as I need gas, so that works out just fine.  I like to drive.  I like to go places where even if I was willing to fly, which I'm not with the TSA bull**** and being treated like cattle, there are many such places with no reasonably-close large commercial airport.  Want to go ski at Wolf Creek?  How are you going to get there in an EV?

Virtually the entire UP of Michigan?  How are you going to get there?  Most of the Western US ex California, coastal Washington and Oregon?  There's a hell of a lot of pretty and serene all over this nation and 90% of it isn't reachable by EV as there's no power on the other end in size.

People claim the EV is a good "second car" but this is elitist snobbism.  A $30,000+ vehicle as your second car?  What sort of income do you think the average American has?

Never mind the other problem: Where do you intend to get the power to charge these cars?

The grid can't support it.  Let's just see the grid build-out plans -- and funding -- to replace part of the cars now out there.  Pick a percentage around 50%; I don't much care exactly how much, but make it "real" and then tell me when you intend to start building the generating plants that take 10 to 20 years to permit and construct and exactly what energy source they're going to use, never mind the distribution side of it.  Oh, and you have to pay for that capital investment before you get paid in the form of electric bills too.  Where's that going to come from and how do you intend to fund it?  Unicorn farts?

We all know where this is going, right?  Transportation as a service.  Which is great until Uber -- or the government -- decides they don't like you, stranding you 500 miles from home in 20 degree weather.  Now what?

Go ahead folks, tell me all about that tard rag sign on the local Kroger or WalMart door and how it's no big deal and you shouldn't have had Grilled Fauci for lunch a year ago, never mind the greenie crap that has crept into the energy supply system without you giving one crap about any of it -- which is largely why Texas had a nice "lights out" week..

You didn't vote the wrong way in the last election, right?

Stop them now or you may find the most-appealing option suck-starting a shotgun -- or using it as a Coffman starter on someone else.

That is, if you can still own one of those by then.

I'll be dead by then.

If you're younger than about 40 you'll wish you were.

View with responses (opens new window)