A Contrary Contrary Opinion

This recent report from Pew Research is titled “Americans Feel More Positive Than Negative About Jews, Mainline Protestants, Catholics.” In Economics the distinction between stated preferences and revealed preferences is an important concept.

Just like the polls were wrong about the 2016 US Presidential Election and Brexit referendum the same year, I strongly suspect that Americans are not as positive about Jews as the survey suggests. However, I have to admit that the margin between favorable and unfavorable opinions about Jews is too wide to be completely dismissed.

The flip side of this Pew study is another from the same group that indicated Jews were targets of harassment in 94 countries in 2020, a substantial increase from the 51 countries reported in the first year of this survey, 2007. The number of countries reporting Jewish harassment is extremely disproportionate, to the point of dissonance, to the distribution of Jews throughout the world. Eighty-five percent of Jews live either in Israel or the United States. That means 85% of Jews live in two countries that comprise only about 4% of the world population.

In my opinion, the lack of proportionality is a cause of anti-Semitic sentiment. The vast majority of people around the world live in countries with minuscule Jewish populations. I think it’s much easier to develop an irrational hatred of a group if one doesn’t know any members of that group.


CNBC is one of many news outlets reporting that Chrysler Corporation will bring back the Dodge Challenger SRT Demon in a limited run for one last model year. In a clever bit of marketing, in my opinion, the base price for the car is $96,666. (Purely by coincidence this is post number 1,666.) From Dodge via the CNBC article comes a picture of the car.


2023 Dodge Challenger SRT Demon 170


On E85 fuel the Demon’s engine is supposed to produce 1,025 HP/945 LB-FT of torque. On regular E10 pump gas, those figures are 900 HP/810 LB-FT.

Just like the first run of the Demon, only 3,000 vehicles will be produced–if supply chains cooperate–for the US and another 300 for Canada. The CNBC article reports that the price of the car can exceed $120,000, but I think it will cost even more, perhaps as much as $150,000. At that price, I’m out.

However, I have–on occasion–looked into buying a used Challenger Hellcat, but not a Redeye or a Demon. This would be a replacement for the Mustang GT and not a companion, not at $65,000+ for a late-model, low-mileage example. Actually, I looked into buying a Hellcat before I bought the Mustang, but was seduced by being able to buy a brand new car AND receive a substantial amount of money in the deal. That would not have happened with a Hellcat in the model years and with the mileage I would have wanted to buy. In addition, we did not live in the Goose Bumps house then and a Challenger would not have fit in our garage. It would now…

The “base” Hellcat engine produces 717 HP/656 LB-FT of torque and without any after-market tuning. However, it is not a dainty car at more than 4,400 pounds. Even stock, my Z06 had a better power-to-weight ratio than the base Hellcat. Let me let you in on a little secret: in my mind (such as it is) if a car has more than 1 HP/1 LB-FT for every ten pounds of curb weight then it’s fast enough. My Mustang GT meets that criterion. My three Corvettes did as well.

One reason I am fond of/obsessed with the new Alpine A110 is that its engine produces 300 HP/251 LB-FT of torque in a car that weighs 2,500 pounds. In case you forgot:




For the nth time, so many cars just one life.







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4 thoughts on “A Contrary Contrary Opinion

  1. Power to weight ratio:

    In drag racing a general “rule of thumb” is that 100 lbs equals 1/10 second in elapsed time for vehicles with equal power outputs. This was brought to the forefront in the early 60’s by all of the Big 3; “Swiss cheese” Pontiacs, aluminum body panels on Chevys, Fords and Mopars, even heater and radio delete (after these were no longer options). In cases where there are weight restrictions imposed, folks will lighten up one area to move the weight to an area where it’s deemed more beneficial.

    The curb weight of the Challenger is the one thing I don’t care much for. I know some is unavoidable, safety and emission regulations, but there are areas where it could be addressed. As an example, the track only version, the Drag Pack, is right at 1,000 lbs lighter. Not every part of the package would be usable on the street, but some certainly would.


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