Nothing In Particular

Once again, my very strongly held opinion:

Republicans/Conservatives have a foolish amount of faith in human nature.

Democrats/Liberals foolishly think they can change and/or ignore human nature.

Without acknowledgment that none of us is right all the time, the divide will grow to the point of being intractable, if it hasn’t already.

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“Crypto is one big con job.”

Those are not the words of Warren Buffett, but the consensus view of tech executives in Silicon Valley who recently spoke to Jim Cramer of CNBC. The problem is as people figure this out the appetite for all “risk-on” assets, like equities, will take a hit.

Sovereign fiat currency is at least “backed” by a country’s ability to tax and to borrow. While that capability doesn’t guarantee a nation’s currency won’t collapse, crypto is only backed by people’s faith in it. I have written that I wouldn’t buy Bitcoin at $1 and I still feel that way. I know some very intelligent people who have lost a lot of money “investing” in cryptocurrencies.

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“A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.” Ralph Waldo Emerson’s words ring very true to me.

Why did I write that famous passage? I am still thinking about buying a convertible, perhaps by the end of this year. I have been focusing primarily on “Ultimate Garage” cars or those that were almost included in my “dream” collections.

In the past couple of days I have realized that an Ultimate Garage is, for the most part, a dream, a fantasy. Even if some of those vehicles are not prohibitively expensive, why should I limit my choices to a very small subset of available cars?

In addition, I should not–and will not–be overly swayed by reviews from automotive journalists and publications. I already have a street-legal race car, for all intents and purposes. Any convertible I might buy doesn’t have to have 400 HP, accelerate from 0-60 MPH in 4.5 seconds and be able to run a sub-eight minute lap at the Nurburgring.

All of this has crystallized and led to a car that my wonderful wife and I test drove in Arizona.

 

See the source image

 

This is a Buick Cascada. It is not a performance car given its 0-60 time of about eight seconds. (My Z06 has a sub-three second time 0-60.) The Cascada was not well-reviewed, in large part because the reviewers were comparing it to automobiles that were designed to be performers instead of cruisers.

While I don’t think the car is ugly, it’s certainly not Jaguar or Aston Martin handsome. So, what’s the appeal? In a way it’s an homage to multiple inspirations. The first car I ever drove was a 1956 Buick Century and that was also the first family car I remember. The Cascada was built in Poland; both of my parents were born in Poland. It’s also a “protest” of sorts against the fact that Buick no longer manufactures cars, only SUVs.

The car has four seats, a decent-sized trunk (13 cubic feet with the top up, about 10 cubic feet with the top down) and a surprising amount of rear leg room so it could function as a grocery car/taxi. This is Arizona and a convertible can be driven in any month here, even during the summer. For example, I went to Starbucks at 5:30 this morning to get breakfast for my wonderful wife and me. The temperature was in the low-to-mid 70s, ideal top down weather.

I have not decided that I will definitely buy a Cascada. I need reassurance that the audio/navigation controls are not as difficult to use as is often reported. Of course, that means another test drive, assuming I can find one locally. On our previous test drive we were more focused on ride quality and the extent of convertible “wobble.” The car passed both tests.

Between now and the likely time of purchase, my thinking could change, of course. I believe it’s OK to change your mind even if there’s nothing wrong with the one you have.

As always, I welcome your thoughts.

 

#NothingInParticular

#CryptoIsAConJob

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#somanyCARSjustonelife

#disaffectedmusings

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