Tag Archives: electric vehicle tax credit

Chevy Volt: A Car Before Its Time?

When my daughter turned 16 there were many conversations revolving around buying a new car. She would watch the commercials and read all the promotions. “This one gets great gas mileage. This one is cute. This one has side air bags. We should buy a …” You name it; she was full of recommendations and would point out her favorites as we drove to school. Finally, I told her we needed to sit down and do the math.

At the time the Prius was a hot car and we even test drove one.  We all agreed it was a nice car. But then we did some calculating. Comparing the cost of the car and cost to drive versus our two year old Chevrolet my daughter discovered it would take nearly five years for the better gas mileage to pay off. That’s a long investment.

Today, with the rising cost of gas it occurred to me that many will be like my daughter, wondering if they should update to a new, better gas mileage car. For fun I checked into the cost of several new popular cars, including a couple hybrids (I consider the new Volt a hybrid as it uses a gas engine after the battery runs down.)  For the purposes of this article I used the Edmunds website as a source for pricing and estimated mpg and electric costs. Warning: Math Involved.

So what does this graph tell me? A two year old Prius might be the best deal. We are always told that a car loses a large amount of value the first year. The cost of the Volt, even figuring in the current tax credit is most costly to operate.  An interesting note: Toyota is now making a ‘plug-in’ version of the Prius which is listed at $32,000 and may be eligible for a $2,500 tax credit. It gets 50mpg in the hybrid mode.

Personally, I really like the idea of an electric car. It’s quiet and should be easier on the environment.  I do wonder about the inconvenience of plugging the car in each night. Many areas, like mine, offer very reduced electricity rates after 7 or 9pm. Will I remember to charge my car each night? Will it become bothersome to take the charge cord out of the trunk each trip? Will I have to install a new super electric panel? Living in the sprawling Phoenix area will I find that I am always using gas just to drive across town, especially because I refuse to drive without air conditioning thus increasing my costs? Can I plug it in while shopping? Or is it a car before its time?

It is remarkable that the average income of a Volt buyer is $170,000; wages well above the working class ($30-100K) who more often are living paycheck to paycheck.  Personal experience of acquaintances has shown that many prefer buying a used car due to the lower cost. Due to the Cash-for-Clunkers many have said that the used car market is a lot tighter than before. Unfortunately, friends who drove “clunkers” were not financially able to buy a new car and participate in the program. Like the tax credit rebate on the Volt, the Cash-for -Clunkers program seemed to help those already with better finances.

The decision to buy new or upgrade is not one to be taken lightly. For many the cost of a new or even slightly used car is still significant and a major portion of our budget, especially during these challenging economic times. With groceries up over 9% and the job market still unstable many are making the decision to wait a while longer before buying a new car. From my friends there is a strong feeling to wait, that while my car does become another year older at least I am not taking on more debt. A stronger economy would help. Still, should you buy a Volt? Do the math.

Sen. Tom Coburn: Tax Payers Subsidizing Millionaires

A few days ago, I heard a little snippet on the radio about John Bon Jovi receiving farm subsidies from the federal government. I was busy writing another article, so I jotted down a note to remind me to look into this. Frankly, when I heard the report I was both shocked and skeptical at the same time. I thought, “Surely multi-millionaire performers aren’t being paid farm subsidies with my tax money”. I had just heard Barack Obama talk about rich people paying their “fair share of taxes”. Well, today I decided to take a look at this obviously bogus attempt by vicious, hate-filled conservatives to slander our messianic leader.

As it turns out it wasn’t slander at all. I did a search for ”Sen. Tom Coburn + subsidies” and guess what I found, a 36 page report by the Senator from Oklahoma listing billions in tax dollars going to some of the richest people in this nation every year. This link will take you to the entire report.

In the letter to taxpayers Sen. Coburn wrote:

These billions of dollars for millionaires include $74 million of unemployment checks, $316
million in farm subsidies, $89 million for preservation of ranches and estates, $9 billion of
retirement checks, $75.6 million in residential energy tax credits, and $7.5 million to compensate
for damages caused by emergencies to property that should have been insured. All and all, over
$9.5 billion in government benefits have been paid to millionaires since 2003. Millionaires also
borrowed $16 million in government backed education loans to attend college.

On average, each year, this report found that millionaires enjoy benefits from tax giveaways and federal grant programs totaling $30 billion. As a result, almost 1,500 millionaires paid no federal income tax in 2009.

I have also listed a portion of the report that lists some of the different subsidies that these ultra-wealthy people draw from the same government that taxes me, and from the same Barack Obama that castigates the rich as “not paying their fair share”.

Summary of Total Payments and Tax Breaks to Millionaires
Total Amount of Government Payments to Millionaires
Program Years Total Amount Paid to Millionaires
Social Security Retirement Benefits 2004-2009 $9 billion
Unemployment Insurance 2005-2009 $74 million
Farm Program Payments 2003-2009 $316 million
Conservation Program Payments 2009-2010 $89 million
Disaster Housing Payments 2007-2010 $7.5 million
Total Amount of Payments $9.5 billion
The annual average amount of government payments to millionaires is $1.6 billion.
Total Amount of Tax Breaks Claimed by Millionaires
Tax Breaks Years Total Amount Deducted by Millionaires
Mortgage Interest Deduction 2006-2009 $27.7 billion
Rental Expenses Deduction 2006-2009 $64.3 billion
Gambling Losses Deducted 2006-2009 $21 billion
Cancelled Debt Deduction 2008-2009 $128 million
Business Entertainment Expenses
Deduction
2006-2009 $607.7 million
Electric Vehicle Credit 2009 $12.5 million
Childcare Tax Credit 2007-2009 $18.15 million
Renewable Energy Credit 2009 $75.6 million
Total Taxpayer Cost to the Treasury of all
Credits and Deductions
$113.7 billion

The annual average amount of tax breaks claimed by millionaires is $28.5 billion.

John Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen, Ted Turner, and Quincy Jones are just some of the names I have turned up in looking into this scam. How is it that these people can take money from hard working Americans and pad their extravagant lifestyles with money taken through threat of prison if we don’t pay up? Aren’t these the same liberal elite who decry lack of government support of the poor? It seems to me they have no conscience when they yell about the plight of the poor yet turn around and take this kind of money away from those same poor people, as well as from the tax paying citizen who works every day to scratch out a living. Where are the Occupy Wall Street people when you need them? Why aren’t they in Hollywood or at the White House with their squawking?

I saw some video of Barack Obama in Kansas a few days ago, using his best Benito Mussolini pose, spouting his latest campaign tactic about rich people not paying their fair share of taxes. I just wrote an article about that very speech, combined with a clip of an MSNBC interview with T. Boone Pickens that I heard on the radio. Obama rails about the rich not paying their fair share, then sticks his nose up in the air just like Il Duce used to do. All the while, he looks around to the applause of a crowd so apparently ignorant of the truth that they applaud and cheer when they should be booing and throwing shoes. If they would only take a minute to see the things I see, and take a real objective look at what is truly happening!

After seeing that display in Kansas, I stumbled onto my note about the subsidies for ultra wealthy entertainers and media moguls, and began to look into this situation. What I found is not only alarming it is disgusting. How can Obama stand up there and lie without any semblance of shame? And when I say lie, I don’t mean he “misunderstands” the situation. And I don’t mean the “lying is a state of mind” line Eric Holder is trying to pull at the Fast and Furious investigations.

Obama recently stated that if he didn’t get the debt ceiling raised, Social Security recipients, military personnel, and those depending on welfare checks would do without because Republicans hate poor people. I don’t remember him mentioning John Bon Jovi not receiving his farm subsidy, or Ted Turner having to do without is unemployment check. I don’t remember Obama mentioning poor Scottie Pippen doing without an evening meal if the debt ceiling didn’t go up $2.4 trillion.

Here we find another example of the class warfare being waged by Democrats to divide and conquer the populace. It doesn’t help that some of the wealthiest in our nation stick their hands out and virtually steal from those truly in need, and those of us paying the bill to help those in need.

The corruption in our government is monumental, and I fear fatal to our Republic. There is no need for anyone in America to go to bed hungry. Some choose to do so because they are lazy, and content looking for a constant handout. Many more are victims of the corruption in Washington D. C. How many people have lost jobs due to the tax burdens on small business owners, or even giant corporations, tax liabilities that caused them to have to lay workers off? How many homes have been lost due to pay cuts people had to take to keep the job they had in this economy?

The sad tale of this is that it isn’t only Obama and it isn’t only Democrats. If you will look at the report put out by Senator Coburn you will find some of this goes back to 2004, a time when Republicans owned the White House, the Senate, and the House of Representatives. This isn’t a partisan problem, it is a systemic problem. Greedy people empowered by greedy politicians to take advantage of those with no influence, no money, and no voice in government.
This link to CBS News mentions Scottie Pippen, Ted Turner, John Bon Jovi, Quincy Jones, and Bruce Springsteen.

This next link adds Maurice Wilder, a real-estate developer and part owner of a professional sports franchise to the list.

Go to this link and get page after page of stories on this.

This is revolting at the very least. Common people work hard and barely exist while the political class and some of the ultra-wealthy literally steal food out of the mouths of starving children. Some may disagree with my terminology but what else can one call this action?

This is not what our founding fathers, with the protection of Divine Providence, created. Our founding fathers created a nation where everyone has an equal chance to prosper but it has been perverted through greed and corruption. The unions pay Democrats for favorable legislation every day and now we find out that they are only the tip of the iceberg.

How will our nation survive if we continue this? Both political parties take from the poor and give to the rich. Isn’t this the story behind Robin Hood and his Merry Men of Sherwood Forest, evil rulers taking from peasants for themselves and their friends? We need a modern day Robin Hood, a man like John Dummett and a band of merry men recruited by Tim Cox of GOOOH. If we elect the same rogues gallery that has been running things in Washington we can expect the same results we have seen in this report by Senator Coburn.

We are in dire need of patriots to run for office and patriots to have the courage to vote out those who have created this situation. The definition of insanity is to continue doing the same thing and expecting different results, or in this case, electing the same corrupt politicians and expecting different results.

I submit this in the name of the Most Holy Trinity, in faith, with the responsibility given to me by Almighty God to honor His work and not let it die from neglect.

Bob Russell
Claremore, Oklahoma
December 9, 2011