December 04, 2008

How To Save Detroit, The Economy, and the Planet

I figured out how to bail out the Big Three Autofailures, stimulate the economy, reduce dependence on foreign oil and save the planet. All at the same time.

I'm that good.

The Detroit 3 have already been promised $25 billion to retool factories to make more fuel efficient and "Green" vehicles.

They are asking for another $25 billion in pure bailout cash just to stay afloat. That number is probably going to go up because that's what these things do, so let's call their total bail out $70 billion. (Michelle Malkin expects to be a lot higher but that just makes my plan even better.)

According to the Federal Trade Commission the average price of a new car is $28,400. At that price, the Auto Bailout would purchase 2,464,788 cars.

Any American with a car built after 1980 that has been registered and insured will receive a voucher worth $28,400 that can only be used to purchase a new car. I picked 1980 because if you have a car older than that it is probably just a toy you're collecting.

If you pick a car that costs more than that average you have to pay the difference - if your car costs less the difference rolls back into the program. However I suspect there would be a lot of cars on the market for $28,400.

Set a time limit to apply for the voucher and start sending them out to the owners of the oldest cars first. Keep doing this until the $70 billion has been spent. It should be included in the bill that  a car - tracked by VIN number - can only qualify for a voucher replacement once.

The car makers - and this would include the foreign owned manufacturers - would need to ramp up production to meet the sudden surge in demand from 2.5 million car buyers. This would reduce unemployment, stimulate the economy, grow tax revenues, and help the Not So Big 3.

Also by replacing the 2.5 million oldest, least efficient, least "Green" cars on the road with more fuel efficient, less polluting new cars and even hybrids, we can reduce gas consumption and greenhouse gas emissions dramatically.

I currently drive a 1994 Toyota Corolla. I'd like my voucher, please.

UPDATE: I keep thinking of more and more problems that this will fix. States will get a nice boost in taxes and fees for all those new registrations and insurance companies will make a killing insuring all those new cars.

Posted by: Stephen Macklin at 01:18 PM | Comments (4) | Add Comment


1 We are going to keep an eye on you from now on, trouble maker is stamped on your genetic code.

Posted by: T F Stern at December 04, 2008 04:10 PM (Ruh11)

2 explain to the lesser minded how Detroit stays alive to produce these cars?

Posted by: anna at December 04, 2008 07:26 PM (6MUKm)

3 Detroit is still getting a chunk of the $70 billion - at least as much as people are willing to give them.

They start by selling off their inventory and using that income to keep building new cars for people with vouchers.

Here's the catch - if large numbers of people decide they don't want Ford, Chryslers, or GMs and redeem their vouchers for Toyotas, Hondas and Kias, then then Detroit goes under - which is what should have happened in the first place.

I mean if people won't choose their cars when they are free - they deserve to collapse.

Plus I get a new car, so its cool!

Posted by: Stephen Macklin at December 04, 2008 08:48 PM (R7LgM)

4 I neglected to mention in the original post that this plan also achieves a massive redistribution of wealth. Most rich people aren't driving around in 14 year old used cars.

So it's a natural for The One to get behind.

Posted by: Stephen Macklin at December 04, 2008 08:50 PM (R7LgM)

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