Mustang Parts
   Carrying Saleen wheels and Bullitt wheels.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

You Conserve, But They Deserve

From Michelle Malkin's video blog Hot Air I learn that certain liberal greenie wannabes, while preaching conservation and cursing SUVs, in fact commit massive pollution themselves via their lavish "celebrity" lifestyle. A few examples:

  • Ted Kennedy tried to slip an amendment into an unrelated Coast Guard bill to kill a proposed windmill farm at Cape Cod, where the Kennedy's own an estate. Apparently, the wind turbines would ruin the view.
  • Barbara Streisand has a massive oceanside mansion in Malibu, and is said to drive an SUV.
  • Arianna Huffington was chauffeured from a Sierra Club national summit in a Chevrolet Suburban
  • Gwyneth Paltrow, according to a neighbor, drives a Mercedes SUV.
  • In addition to their Priuses, Chevy Chase and family own an SUV which they use to tow a horse trailer.
  • Michael Moore traveled in a private jet when traveling on a book tour.
  • And of course, there is John Kerry's Scaramouche powerboat, as well as his SUV collection.
Many "celebrities"* frequently travel by private jet and luxury limousine, using up way more fossil fuel than if they would fly commercial, and use a normal taxi. Hence the effective and derisive label that the conservative blogosphere has nailed them with, "Gulfstream Liberals".

*I refuse to celebrate them, so to me, they are "celebrities".

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Oleg Volk [Guns]

I found this guy's web site years ago, and I just remembered to go and check up on it. Oleg Volk is a photographer and graphic artist who has a passion for RKBA. As you can see from his web site, he combines a sharp wit with with a sharp eye, and makes some very impressive pro-gun posters. He also very feffectively presenting the art-photography version of "girls with guns".

You can visit his web page by clicking on this logo.
a human right

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Nuburgring Motorcycle Porn

I'm too busy to post anything verbose. Here's a video from Google Video of a pair of motorcyclers burning through the Nurburgring. Enjoy.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Bein Stein's Right

Excellent article on oil prices by economist, writer, and Hollywood mega-star* Ben Stein, here.

Next, if we want to blame anyone -- and frankly I'm not sure there's anyone to blame -- maybe we should blame ourselves for the oil pinch. I offer my humble self as an example. The first new car I ever bought was a 1972 Subaru FF-1. No air conditioning, no cruise control, no FM radio, no power windows. Four on the floor, four tiny little cylinders, and no power at all.

It got about 40 miles to the gallon. [...] In other words, I was sensible.

Now, I drive a Caddy. It's a great car, and I feel like a prince in it. But it gets very poor mileage indeed with its mighty V-8 engine with supercharger. True, I hardly ever drive it, so on a daily basis I hardly buy any gas at all (I like to make that point over and over again to soothe my conscience).
Ben Stien drives a STS-V or an XLR-V. Sweet!
But I'm an American. I like my big cars, and they burn a lot of gasoline. Likewise, I like my air conditioning and my pool heated. So, I play my part in using a ridiculous amount of hydrocarbons. I could spend less by having a smaller car and sweating in the summer. But I don't. I just pay more and suffer financially.
This is not just some rich guy talking. How many Dodge Ram 4x4's with lift kits do you see dieseling around the the suburbs with spotless knobby tires? Blue collar guys love hyrdocarbons, too.

Regarding the commodities run-up:

As for me, I question if the commodities boom can go on forever. ...

If you think this one will, here's a hint. When people say, "Hey, this nonstop boom has never happened before," and someone responds, "This time it's different," hold onto your wallets. "This time it's different" is one of the most frightening phrases in economics. It's entirely possible that the next move for oil is a long step down. Then won't we be sorry for shooting the messengers?

"This time is different" may come true when we hit "peak oil"--that is, annual global oil production starts to decline because supplies are limited. We are not at peak oil yet, and no one knows when it will happen, because there are may areas that are off limits to exploration which could be opened up, once we shove the greenies out of the way, scare some whales, run over some caribou, and club us a few cute baby seals.

*Ben Stein is a minor "celebrity", but his brain could bench press the entire cast of M:I:3.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Crazy Wheels

I saw an ad for the "Pimpstar" wheels recently. These are oversized wheels which have built in LEDs, microprocessors, and wi-fi transmitters built into them. The wheels come with software that lets you download graphics to each wheel, which then displays the image in color as the wheels spins by modulating the LEDs.

The technology is really neat, but the 24" wheels with tires will cost you about $15,000!

Friday, May 12, 2006

Buy American, Save Jobs

Here is an interesting graphic from the Detroit News:

It shows an estimate of how many jobs are supported by the major automakers, calculated by multiplying direct employment numbers by an impact factor.

The full piece is here.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

No Such Thing As Free Money

The other day I saw a guy who had a sign mounted on the side of his car. "APP / JOIN OUR GAS CLUB / SAVE UP TO 25% ON GAS / Call (xxx) xxx-xxxx". Curious, I did some quick web research.

APP is American Petroleum Promotions. APP is an MLM (Multi Level Marketing) company which claims to sell $200 gas cards for $150. To order the gas cards, you have to pay an annual $300 membership fee, which if included in the calculations means you only really get a 12.5% discount on your gas cards, not 25%. However, if you sign up as a member of the MLM chain, and get other distributors of gas cards to sign up underneath you, you earn free gas cards.

MLMs are the slightly more respectable (and legal) cousins of the famous Ponzi or Pyramid Scheme. The difference is that in an MLM, some real product flows down the pyramid.

APP is not to be confused with a gas pre-purchase service, which allows you to pre-pay for gas by the gallon, and then draw down on your reserves when prices are high. These are legitimate businesses which work on the same principle as gasoline futures contracts.

So how could this work? APP's web site claims that it can do this through the power of mass purchases--but this is an obvious lie. APP is selling fuel purchase cards that operate on the Discover credit card network--they aren't buying physical gas.

No business can sell $100 bills for $85 and stay afloat, despite the joke that they could make it up on volume.

My guess is that APP can stay afloat as long as new members sign up, paying the $300 up front fee, and as long as new legs of the MLM chain sign up, paying additional fees. As long as the pyramid keeps growing, there will be enough cash flow to pay for $200 gas cards.

When APP stops growing, they won't be able to cover their expenses, and whoever ordered fresh gas cards will not have their orders filled.

This actually happened to this very company once already. In 2003, APP was based in St. Louis Missouri, and the business collapsed. Some details appear here. and BBB report is here. Later, a new owner bought APP and moved it to Texas.

Another reason to be wary: the APP membership application requires your Social Security #. I couldn't find any explanation for this requirement.

You Pay Now! [Culture]

A family was kicked out of a Chinese buffet for wasting food--making repeat trips to the buffet while throwing away plates of uneaten food from previous trips.

"They told us we are not welcome there anymore," said Dershem, a repeat customer at the Dragon House buffet. "We waste too much food. But the buffet is all you can eat. And you know kids. They won't always eat everything and they want something else."

Dershem said she paid her $5.95 fee on Saturday but was abruptly told to leave after eating one plate of food.

Employees said they had been watching her family on previous trips to the restaurant and were fed up with her habits.

"They just take one bite and throw it away," said cashier Lin Huyen. "They take four egg rolls and crab ragoon, take one bite of egg roll and throw the whole plate. That is wasting food."

I'm with the Chinese place on this one, although, to be honest, I won't go to cheap buffet restaurants. Too dodgy.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Fusion Beats Camry (!!!)

In a startling win for the "home team" (Detroit), the Detroit News auto reviewers Anita and Paul Lienert did a head-to-head review of the Ford Fusion vs the Toyota Camry, and picked the Fusion.

The trick was that the two cars reviewed had close to the same sticker price, which meant that the Fusion had a V6 but the Camry was stuck with its base I4. With the extra power, tighter ride, and better interior at the price point, the Fusion won handily.

You can read the whole thing here.