See You On The Flip Side

Although we have not received any confirmation, the buyers of our house were supposed to sign the docs to execute the purchase yesterday afternoon. We are proceeding under the assumption (you know what happens when you assume) that we will be moving on Tuesday and that the movers will be here tomorrow to pack our belongings.

I will not be able to post until Wednesday at the earliest and it’s possible I won’t post again until Friday or Saturday. Please bear with me. Thanks.


I want to shout these words from the rooftop. Formula 1 CEO Stefano Domenicali is quoted here as saying, “We will never go electric.” F1 will be switching to synthetic fuels, or eFuels, instead.

Domenicali also noted that by 2035, when some governments–including the European Union and California–have mandated that only zero-emission vehicles can be sold, there will still be around two billion vehicles on the road powered by internal-combustion engines. “Zero emissions can be achieved without having to change engines or throw away the entire fleet of vehicles that already exists,” he said.

EVs are NOT the answer; Synthetic Fuels are.


Even though this potential purchase is probably at least ten months away (barring some unexpected windfall), I am mulling my choices for a sporty, good-looking convertible. Reading reviews about the difficulty in raising/lowering the Solstice/Sky top is giving me pause. This car has stepped back into the conversation.



While the XLR has never been included in any iteration of my Ultimate Garage, it was omitted only because of the teething pains upon introduction, especially evident in the 2004 and 2005 model years. I still think these cars are stunning in appearance and have thought so from the first moment I saw one at the Dallas Auto Show in 2004.

If I “lower my standards” by raising the maximum mileage I would consider to 60,000, then I can find a few examples of these on Autotrader with an asking price comfortably under $30,000. At a price in the mid-to-high 20s that would be about $10,000 above a Solstice/Sky, but about $7,000-$10,000 less than a Jaguar F-Type convertible with a six-cylinder engine.

I would only consider XLRs from the 2006 through 2008 model years, inclusive. In that way I would avoid the teething pains of the 2004-05 models and the awful polished vertical trim piece on the front fenders from 2009. I also would only consider cars with no accidents.

In base spec, the V-spec costs far more than I want to spend–even used, the XLR engine was rated 320 HP/310 LB-FT of torque to power a car that weighed about 3,650 pounds. While not earth-shattering, that is not a bad power-to-weight ratio.

My 2011 Infiniti G37x coupe, the “forgotten car,” weighed about 3,850 pounds and its engine was rated at 332 HP/270 LB-FT. That car was not slow. Yes, it was all-wheel drive so it had better starting traction. The G37x was supposed to be able to accelerate from 0-60 MPH in 5.4 seconds. The base XLR 0-60 time has been reported as 5.6 or 5.9 seconds. By the way, the base XLR was supposed to be able to pull .9g on a skidpad, which is also a good result.

A Cadillac salesman once candidly admitted to me he thought that the XLR “failed” because Cadillac priced them too high. At introduction in 2004, the MSRP was $75,000, about $120,000 in 2023 dollars. A year later, the first year for the sixth-generation Corvette–a car that shared a lot with the XLR including where it was built, the base MSRP for a Corvette convertible was $52,000. Yes, the financial meltdown of 2007-09 would have probably doomed the XLR, anyway, but if sales had been more robust at a lower price before the meltdown, maybe the car would have been seen as more viable. Hindsight is at least 20-20.


Temporarily, I bid you adieu. Please don’t forget the blog and wish us good luck because we still need it. Thanks again.







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Is General Motors Hedging Its Bet On Electric Vehicles?

First…even with outdoor temperatures in the 30s and house thermostats set in the 60s (those are Fahrenheit temps in case those of you in countries that use Celsius are confused), I woke up about 2 AM completely drenched in sweat, so much so that I had to change my T-shirt. I can only surmise I had a hell of a nightmare. Fortunately, I don’t remember any of the details.


As reported in this CNBC article and elsewhere, General Motors has announced that it will be investing nearly $1 billion in four production plants to support production of components for electric vehicles and its next generation of V-8 engines. Would any company, even as one as large as GM, invest a nine-figure sum in a technology it will discard in a little more than a decade? The author of the CNBC piece (or his editor) writes, “It’s a signal that the company will keep relying on gas-powered vehicles for the foreseeable future.”

Of course, GM and all automakers (except Tesla) will have to rely on gas-powered vehicles to sell in the US. Despite the years of hype, the excessive propaganda from governments and media about the alleged need for all of us to drive electric vehicles, in 2022 pure EVs accounted for only 6 percent of new vehicle sales in the US.

In this post I wrote about a Hagerty story on a KPMG survey about automobile executives becoming more realistic about how quickly EV adoption would occur. Akio Toyoda has been very outspoken, and very brave to do so, about how EV mandates by governments are completely unrealistic.

I will believe this for the rest of my life. EVs are not the answer; synthetic fuels are.



Yes, the car shown above is not a GM product. It is, of course, my 2022 Mustang GT.


Speaking of synthetic fuels, this CNBC article by the same writer is about Porsche’s beginning production of e-Fuels (a politically correct way to say synthetic fuels) at a plant in Chile. From the piece:


“Company officials say e-fuels can act like gasoline, allowing vehicle owners a more environmentally friendly way to drive. They could also use the same fueling infrastructure as gas, compared with the billions of dollars in investments needed to build a network of charging stations for electric vehicles.” [emphasis mine]


The zealot lemmings simply assume the money to build EV infrastructure just exists. Synthetic fuels will require NO infrastructure spending and will achieve the same result. As I keep writing, the push to “go green” is not really about the environment, but about smug, self-righteous and arrogant ideologues’ quest for control and punishment. I become more sure of that every day.


Let’s see if I can display this image:



The recently concluded Mecum auction in Kissimmee, Florida surpassed $200 million in sales for the second consecutive year. Prior to last January, no automobile auction had ever exceeded $180 million in sales.

Of course, part of the reason for the record-setting sales volume at Mecum Kissimmee 2023 was the record size of the docket, about 4,200 vehicles. That is an average of about $56,000 per vehicle.

My favorite car from the auction, and a car that Mecum has previously offered for sale, was probably this one.


See the source image


This is a 1955 Chrysler Ghia ST Special, of which four were built. Unlike at least one previous Mecum auction where the car did not sell (I believe at a high bid of $450,000), the car sold at Mecum Kissimmee, all in, for $770,000. If I could afford it, which I cannot, I would spend a million dollars on this car.

In general, and as I have previously written, American cars from the 1950s are really starting to appeal to me. IF we are successful in buying the “Goose Bumps” house (and we should know much more about that in the next 2-3 days), then I might just buy such a car at some time in the future. While the bodywork for this car is Italian, the drivetrain is American and the car doesn’t look that different from Chrysler products of the same time period, just a bit more streamlined.








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PS, for the first 20 days of this month, the average number of daily blog views and visitors reached a level not seen since last January. Of course, part of the reason is that I have posted every day this month except one. I’ll keep writing as long as you keep reading. Is that a deal?



Arrogance = Willful Blindness

Human: arrogant animal species, many of whom believe that 100 years worth of (flawed) data equals 10,000+ years of wisdom


Here are some remarks from Toyota President Akio Toyoda:


Give Toyoda credit for having the courage to publicly say what many other auto executives are thinking, apparently. I will write again that if half of the money invested in EV development had been invested in synthetic fuels, we might already be on the other side of the transition.


This Hemmings piece is about the proposed four-seat Corvette…from the early 1960s. Take a look at this picture:


four-seat Corvette prototype


Instead of quoting or paraphrasing the article I will suggest that you read it. Of course, word has recently spread that General Motors is considering spinning off Corvette as a separate brand/make that would include a four-seat sedan and SUV in addition to the traditional two-seat sports car. Apparently, the success of Porsche SUVs has led many GM executives to think that they should emulate the German company.


While I don’t think, at present, I could hold my nose long enough without suffocating to buy one of these, I do think they are extremely attractive cars.


Mercedes SLK 350 Review, Test Drive - Autocar India


This is a Mercedes-Benz SLK 350. These were powered by a 3.5 liter (hence, the 350 designation) double-overhead cam V-6 engine, which was rated at 302 HP/273 LB-FT of torque. For a 3,400 pound car that’s a good amount of power.

I have to confess that I test drove one of these in 2015 or 2016 and spent a half hour at the dealership after the test drive trying to decide if I wanted to buy it. In the end, I just couldn’t pull the trigger. My wonderful wife even offered to buy it for me, but I just couldn’t do it.

My aversion to German cars has grown stronger in the intervening time period. I can’t imagine even test driving one now, but who knows what I’ll think in 3-5 years. The line I often write about the folly of human beings trying to predict the future even applies to our own personal decisions. By the way, usually listing at above $30,000, these are more expensive than the base Cadillac XLR, but are a very similar type of car, obviously.


I wish I had more to write, but I am out of ideas for today.








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Ahead Of My Time

As I have written before, I was using statistical analysis, or analytics, to help a major league baseball team make decisions in a full-time job 15 years before Moneyball was published. No one had heard of Michael Lewis and Billy Beane was just another first-round bust.

In the late 1990s, while I was Director of Baseball Operations for a major league team, I proposed that position players (non-pitchers) without enough service time to be eligible for salary arbitration be compensated on the basis of OPS, On-Base Percentage Plus Slugging Percentage, adjusted for position and weighted for playing time. The data that allowed for solid, objective evaluation of defense was just over the horizon at that point. I also proposed a similar scheme for pitchers, but obviously one that was based on pitching metrics.

Someone recently sent me this link to an ESPN article that reported on the first bonus pool for players not yet eligible for salary arbitration. The top 100 players in WAR–Wins Above Replacement, a “modern” metric for evaluating performance–among those who do not have enough service time for arbitration received bonuses. Such bonuses were also paid for players in this group who finished first or second in Rookie of the Year voting, in the top five for MVP and Cy Young as well as first and second-team All-MLB. A good percentage of these players will earn more in bonuses than their salary.

Can you understand my continuing bitterness towards major league baseball? Maybe they are simply being kind, but the very few people still in the game with whom I still have any communication tell me that the “kids” being hired today by teams don’t know as much about the game as I did. Yet, they are in and I am out.

One thing that aggravates me to no end is people who believe that everyone gets what they deserve. That to me is SUB: Sheer Unadulterated Bullshit. NO ONE even knows what anyone else deserves.


Here are links to two stories about Tesla cars:


A Tesla Owner Says He Was Locked Out Of His Car After The Battery Died

Tesla Magically Ignites While Sitting In Junkyard


My wonderful wife sent me these stories. Philip Maynard sent me this link to a story about automakers are now charging subscription fees, which is made much easier with electric cars, for features like heated seats.

The EV lemmings/zealots refuse to acknowledge that electric cars have drawbacks. NOTHING made by human beings is perfect because NO human being is perfect. #DeathBeforeEV


This recent Hagerty article is about their “Bull Market” list for 2023, the hottest collector vehicles. One point they make is that more than half of the list–6 of 11–was built after 2000. I was pleasantly surprised that most of the vehicles were actually cars and not SUVs or pickup trucks. My wonderful wife is a big fan of this car that made the list; me, not so much.


AMC AMX side pan high angle


I have always thought that the C-pillar (some would call it the B-pillar) for the original AMC AMX is simply too large for the car. Here is the Hagerty “Intelligence” on the AMX that led it to making this list:


“The AMX is the other two-seat American performance car of the 1960s, and though its appreciation lags behind other muscle cars, younger enthusiasts are increasingly shopping for it. Appreciation since 2019 for the AMX was 28.8 percent, which is behind the ’67–69 Camaro (up 40.5 percent). However, interest from next-generation enthusiasts has nearly tripled since 2019, from a share of 13 percent to 38, suggesting further appreciation is likely.”


My idiosyncratic “appreciation” of small cars has manifested itself in strange ways, including a like of this car that made the list:


Suzuki Cappuccino rear three-quarter driving action


This is a Suzuki Cappuccino. I have written about this car before, here and here. Here is the Hagerty summary for the Cappuccino.


“The Cappuccino never got the same attention as its fellow ABC kei cars, the Autozam AZ-1 and Honda Beat. However, demand for this more “practical” kei car is increasing. Imports have outpaced the Beat in recent years and average protected values are increasing at twice the rate of those for the Beat. Millennial and Gen Z enthusiasts submit over 80 percent of insurance quotes, which assures there will be a dedicated following in the future. It’s nearly impossible to find a more interesting car for under $10,000, assuming you can fit in one.”


Was my interest in this car ahead of its time (the first time I wrote about it was in 2018)? I’ll let you decide.











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Going Far

It was appropriate, but a coincidence, that the last song my iPhone played yesterday during my workout was “Going Far” from “The Joy Of Flying” by the late, great Tony Williams. In 1970, music critic Robert Christgau described him as “probably the best drummer in the world.” What am I talking about?



Yes, I walked for 81 minutes yesterday, going 5.3 miles at an average speed of 3.9 MPH, all uphill by the way. I had intended to walk for 70 minutes, but felt so good that I just kept going. I probably could have walked at least another 5-10 minutes, but thought it was better that I be safe than sorry.

Other than being extremely hungry I am having no bad after effects from the long workout. That is the longest I have ever been on a treadmill. Except for one or two previous workouts that were affected by the use of a beta blocker, I have discovered that all previous workouts that have been sub-optimal have been due to insufficient pre-workout hydration. I now make it a point to have something other than or in addition to coffee–a diuretic–with breakfast and to drink water and G Zero in sufficient quantities before working out.

As you can see in the picture, if I ever make it to 100+ minutes the display will not be able to register the time. Oh, my heart was not stopped; the reason the pulse displays as zero is that I seldom grip the handles for my pulse rate to be recorded.


A picture is worth a thousand words…



Here are links to two CNBC articles. This one is titled, “Electric vehicles are less reliable because of newer technologies, Consumer Reports finds.” In that vein, here is a tweet I sent to General Motors yesterday:


I will never buy a soulless, glorified golf cart with no torque curve.




I don’t care how many lemmings jump off the cliff, I will never board the EV bandwagon. Oh, the zealots who say we “have” to move to EVs because of environmental reasons conveniently ignore the environmental effects of lithium mining.

The second piece is titled, “Charlie Munger says crypto is a bad combo of fraud and delusion – ‘good for kidnappers.’” The 98-year old Munger is Vice-Chairman of Warren Buffett’s company, Berkshire Hathaway.

Munger, Buffett and others who criticize cryptocurrency are often dismissed as being old and out of touch. Sorry, I trust Warren Buffett; I don’t trust Sam Bankman-Fried or the Winklevoss twins.


Yes, I had another bizarre dream. I dreamt I was walking through my neighborhood and wound up on a neighbor’s property as they were being visited by someone from the US military. Although I couldn’t hear the conversation in any detail, it seemed as though the military official was conveying bad news.

As I continued walking on a large lot (these don’t exist in our current neighborhood, was I projecting the effects of a potential move?), I was harassed by large rabbits. I never felt as though I was in real danger, but these animals were an extreme annoyance as I tried to walk. WTF?! What would my dreams be like if I smoked pot or used harder drugs? I’ve never done either, by the way.








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1961 Chevrolet Impala for sale near Atlanta, Georgia 30318 - Classics on Autotrader

Wednesday Wackadoodle

Once again, it’s Wednesday and once again, I’m a Wackadoodle. I think I first heard that word in an episode of The Big Bang Theory. Penny says something like, “I love Sheldon, but man he is a wackadoodle.”


Blog views started out slowly yesterday, but didn’t stay that way all day.



Although I cannot explain the surge in views, it was enough for WordPress to send me a notification, an all too rare event. What’s unusual is that almost all of the views were of the main blog link and the number of referrals from sites like search engines was, if anything, smaller than normal. Yeah, yeah, I know: don’t look a gift horse in the mouth or don’t break a butterfly upon a wheel or whatever. Thanks for reading.


David Banner (not his real name) sent me this:



For the nth time, the infrastructure does NOT exist in the US, and won’t for decades, to support many millions of electric vehicles. The eco-mentalists, as Jeremy Clarkson calls them, are conveniently ignoring that fact as well as the environmental toll of lithium mining. I guess I’m talking to a wall, but that doesn’t deter me. This country and much of the world have lost their way.


On this day in 1781 British forces under General Charles Cornwallis signed terms of surrender to George Washington and Comte de Rochambeau at Yorktown at 2 pm, ending the US Revolutionary War. I must admit I know next to nothing about the conflict from which an independent United States emerged. It’s sad and ironic that the country will dissolve due to an internal conflict. I see no other “solution.”


This recent Hagerty UK article is about a car that has been mentioned in at least two posts, the (modern) Alpine A110. From the piece, titled, “Future Classic: Alpine A110“:


Future Classic: Alpine A110


Here is a paragraph from the Hagerty UK article:


“Indeed among the self-appointed cognoscenti of the automotive world, few cars have made a greater impression in the last five years, and none with just a humble 1.8-litre engine and less power than many a warmed-over hatchback. If I may consider myself among their number and if it is of interest, I [Andrew Frankel] am the co-founder of The Intercooler, which has been reviewing cars for four years and, to date, has given just one a ten out of ten rating. The Alpine really is that good.”


The first post where I mentioned the A110 (in August, 2020!) was titled “Why Can’t I Buy This Car?!” From that post:


What cracks me up is that many Americans think that Europe is a place where people have no freedom and the government micromanages everyone’s life. Still, the A110 is available there, but not here.

Don’t kid yourself; a lot of these rules and regulations were simply adopted after lobbying by American car companies in order to reduce foreign competition. I also think that after Americans showed an inclination to buy SUVs, the car companies pushed their marketing in that direction because SUVs have a higher profit margin than cars.


It is beyond stupid that a vehicle that can be legally sold in modern, industrialized countries cannot be legally sold to a US citizen for import into the US. Many of the people who would like to drive the car can’t wait another 20+ years until the 25-year rule for imported cars kicks in. Besides, who knows if that rule will still be in effect? Sadly, common sense isn’t common enough.


My stomach is beyond growling so I am going to get some breakfast for my wonderful wife and me. Enjoy your day and please keep reading.







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Chai, September

No, the post is not about Chai Tea. Yes, it is a play on “Hi, September” as it is my first post of the month.

The post title also refers to the fact that the product of the month and the day is 18 (nine times two). In Hebrew, every letter has a numerical value. The sum of that value for the letters in the word “Chai”–the Hebrew word for “life” (חיים, in עִבְרִית; the toast “L’Chaim” means “to life”)–is 18. Many Jews, even those of us who are not religious but are solely of Jewish ancestry and are OCD math nerds, believe that 18 is almost a holy number because of its association with the Hebrew word for life.

One manifestation of my OCD is to use the number 18 as a basis for making decisions. (Avoiding the number 13 is also part of my behavior.) When I had multiple clients in my baseball operations/player personnel consulting business I ordered uniform tops for each team with my name and the number 18. I would like to show you one of those jerseys, but this blog is still anonymous, technically.

That’s more information than you want or need about me. Oh, count the number of stars used as a divider in my blog posts.


Yesterday, Disaffected Musings received more views on a day without a post than the average number of views for all days from February 1 to July 31 of this year. The average number of views for the last two weeks of August was 68 percent higher than the February-July average. I grant that the six-month average is a bit misleading because March and May did not have a normal number of posts. Still, 68 percent is a very significant increase.

The average for the end of August basically equaled that of the best six-month stretch in the history of the blog, October, 2020 through March, 2021. I will not break a butterfly upon a wheel or look a gift horse in the mouth; I will just say Thanks.


From a recent tweet in my Twitter feed:


August 24: California bans sale of new gasoline-powered cars

August 30: California asks Californians to avoid charging electric vehicles due to electricity shortage


Truth is stranger than fiction, indeed. EVs are not the answer and are certainly not the only answer.

In that vein, here is a funny photo sent to me by David Banner (not his real name):



OK, Tesla doesn’t manufacture vans. The picture is still funny.


Speaking of Tesla, this piece is one of many reporting that some Tesla owners in Norway–land of the EV–have “begun a hunger strike in the hopes of bringing attention to a long list of alleged quality issues with their luxury vehicles.” Truth and fiction…


I am thinking about writing a few posts called If I Had To…These would be what vehicle I would pick if I were forced to select from a group that I would normally not consider, like Porsches or 4-door sedans.

I hesitate to call this a series as I might publish only two or three such posts. I also will NOT pick from among SUVs or pickup trucks. Sorry, pickup truck fans, but they have always had zero interest to me. They all look like a small box on top of a big box on top of wheels.

These posts would only show modern vehicles, say from this century, so the following would be out. This would have been the subject of a Hall of Very Good Cars post if I were continuing the series.


See the source image


This is a Rover P5B; this version of the P5 was built from 1967 to 1973. By the way, Rover called the car a coupé. I’m sure I have written this before, but I believe that the original distinction between coupes and sedans was the amount of interior volume, not the number of doors. BMW currently sells a 4-door car called a Gran Coupe.

I have been fond of the looks of the P5B ever since seeing one as the featured car on an episode of Wheeler Dealers. Mike Brewer described the car as having “rakish lines.”

The cars were powered by the 3.5-liter V-8 for which Rover acquired the rights to produce from Buick in 1965 and used until the 1990s. This motor had gross output ratings–how such metrics were reported until the change to net ratings in the early 1970s–of 181 HP/226 LB-FT of torque.

The heart wants what it wants.


I probably care less than you do about the status of the repairs to the Z06. Some parts were delivered on August 29th, but not all of them. The last of the necessary parts are scheduled to be delivered in a window from September 8th to……….September 22nd.

An irony in all of this is by the time I actually dispose of the Z06, I will have been a Corvette owner for more than ten years, but a Corvette driver for less than ten. I am so done with that car.









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Walkabout Wednesday

This “fact” has nothing to do with real life, but in my current computer football league (24 teams whose rosters–drafted at random–and names, for the most part, bear no resemblance to the real thing) the Texas Tornadoes have won their last two games by a combined score of 107 to 71. Yes, I wrote football, not basketball.

The Tornadoes, who always play in the first game of the new week, are the first team to ten wins at 10-1, but they have allowed 71 points to two teams with a combined record of 7-14. (One of those teams has, of course, not yet played its 11th game.) Can a team predicated on an elite of elite passing attack and little else win a title, even in a computer league? They always play first because they are a lot of fun to play.

This is not fantasy football where someone drafts players and then their team result is based on how those players play in a given week. This is also not a video game. Games are played with the teams using the game program/engine; I call the offensive plays for both teams and the computer makes the defensive calls for both teams. A radio type of description for each play appears on the computer screen.

I started playing statistics-based table top sports games when I was 12. It would be hard to conclude that was a waste of time given my eventual real-life career as a pioneer of the application of analytics to sports, a father of Moneyball and author of a sports book that The Wall Street Journal called without a doubt the best book of its kind ever written. Obviously, I still enjoy playing these games much as some people enjoy card games or Monopoly for most of their lives.


Moving to real football, the Nebraska-Northwestern game was watched by 4.4 million people on Saturday. That is twice the average of Nebraska’s per game TV audience from 2021. ESPN and Major League Baseball were ecstatic at the audience for last year’s American League Wild Card game between longtime bitter rivals the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox. How many people watched that game? 4.8 million. In case you don’t know, that’s essentially a one-game playoff where the winner keeps playing for a shot at the World Series and the loser is eliminated.

The recent Detroit-Pittsburgh NFL preseason game (the NFL doesn’t want them called exhibition games) had a larger audience than any of the regular season NBA games broadcast last Christmas when, supposedly, they have a captive audience. The first round of the NFL Draft was viewed by about 10 million people this past April. That was a large decline from the audience of 15 million in 2020. In 2022, what was the average number of viewers for NBA first-round playoff games? 3.5 million…

There’s a reason why the NFL and its teams will receive $113 Billion in national media rights over the next 11 years, ratings. The primary, but not only, reason the Big Ten Conference just made a TV deal that will pay it $1 Billion a year for seven years is Big Ten football. Nothing comes close to football in sports popularity.

I think one reason why football is so popular is that each game is very important. NFL teams play 17 games in the regular season; college teams play 12. There are 162 games per team in a baseball season and 82 per team in an NBA season. With the fierce competition for eyeballs and the declining attention spans of the population, the significance of each game drives TV traffic.


These words are by Steve Szymanski, an automotive builder and fabricator, via Philip Maynard, long-time reader and commenter on this blog and–in the interest of full disclosure–a relative.


“Vehicles are not commodities, but rather consumable goods. They wear out, and auto manufacturers make more money selling new cars than providing repair parts. The push for EV is a godsend for the automakers. Makes them much more like cell phones, in that you will want the latest tech gadgets as the older vehicles become obsolete.

The battery issue is a feature, not a bug in this instance. There is no mass recycling program for the batteries, at this time anyway. And with copyright protections on software, your “right to repair” has ended. “Closed hood” is the norm now. Joe Six-Pack has no chance to rebuild, and those that try to circumvent the protocols get blocked. The software is not updateable and will be about as useful as a 10 year old cell phone.

GM has lead the way with in-vehicle purchases with their on-board navigation maps. You have to pay $90 a year to get the “updated” maps, On Star is at least a service with some side benefit, but to gain functionality, you have to pay monthly. Recently BMW upped the game, want your heated seats to work? You will have to pay a monthly fee for that.

Expect more of this. A lot more.”


I think that the push “to go green” by people on a certain part of the political spectrum has less to do with environmental concerns than to do with the old socialist/communist agenda of redistributing wealth and income: from rich nations to poor nations, from rich people to poor people.

In the same vein, I think the car companies are diving head-first and blindly into the EV pool because, in large part, they see more certain streams of recurring income. On somewhat of a tangent: Volvo is advertising their new line of EVs and the ads draw much attention to Google being pre-loaded. Sorry, I don’t want the Evil Empire knowing every detail of my driving.

Some even more cynical than I think the push to EVs is the first step in either the constant monitoring of driving by government or the eventual elimination of privately owned vehicles. Even if those scenarios eventually manifest, I won’t be alive to see them. For the nth to the n time: EVs are not the answer and they are certainly not the only answer. Although I’m not the only voice in this chorus, it wouldn’t bother me if I were a lone voice in the wilderness.

Give me one of these every day and twice on Sunday instead of any EV:



By the way, I think that’s one of the greatest front three-quarter shots of any car ever.







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Friable Friday

Once again, Friable: Adjective, easily crumbled

Originally, I was going to write another Hall of Very Good Cars post today. I have to admit that despite the two dozen or so cars I have scribbled in my notebook that are supposed to be the subject of such posts, I have no desire to actually write about them at this time. Like I wrote here, I don’t want to live in the past, but what I can see of the future, admittedly a flawed view, is not appealing to me, either.


You may notice that the sub-menu under the header photo no longer includes an option for “Contact.” I had to disable that link because for weeks it has been used to send me dozens, maybe hundreds, of spam communications about buying prescription drugs online. I grew tired of having to delete them every day. As is too often the case, a few bad actors ruin something for everyone. The only way to communicate with me now in the context of this blog is to submit a comment. Of course, the comments have also been used to send me the same type of items, but at least I can permanently ban the senders’ email addresses.

Some blogs do not allow comments, but I think Disaffected Musings is better for having them. However, if the comments are hijacked then I will have no choice but to disable them as well. Peter King’s Monday Morning Quarterback column on the Sports Illustrated website had to have its comments disabled as people began using the forum to send personal messages and sent so many of them that the moderators could not delete the irrelevant comments.

I could rant about rampant narcissism, the utter disregard for the rights of others, but what good would that do? The anonymity of the Internet enables and emboldens bad behavior. The genie is out of the bottle.


I think the blog is much better with pictures, even if automobiles are not the subject matter.



Yesterday’s post about America’s song “A Horse With No Name,” and that had virtually no automotive content, generated a good number of views. Just like I ended the Threes And Sevens series with the year 1997 because the 21st century has not been about cars, the ill-advised headlong dive towards EVs is not a topic about which I wish to write at length.

You know, electric vehicles are not being widely adopted everywhere in the world. I read yesterday (on the Bloomberg TV news crawl) that policy makers in Australia are considering legislation to coerce people to buy them because only 2% of new vehicles sold there are electric. Again, those Australian officials are unable to understand that one size almost never fits all. Good luck installing charging stations along roads in the outback.

By the way, did you know that the vast majority of publicly accessible charging stations around the world are the slow type? For example, of the approximately 114,000 such devices in the US, about 92,000 of them are the slow chargers. Even in Norway, which has the highest adoption rate for electric vehicles, about two-thirds of public stations are the slow type. EVs are NOT the answer. From this website: “eFuels can be used straight away [right away in American English] with the existing tank and distribution infrastructure.” As Einstein said, every problem should be made as simple as possible. The move to EVs means enormous expenditures on new infrastructure that are actually not necessary.


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The Reluctant Post

I wasn’t going to post today, giving myself a break after writing for ten consecutive days. I was surprised by the response I received to yesterday’s post (both inside and outside the confines of the blog), There’s Bad Everywhere, in which I wrote about Pete Rose.

I think the evidence is beyond overwhelming that Rose is an awful person regardless of how many hits he amassed in his baseball career. Of course, people are entitled to a different view than mine, but mine was not created out of thin air. I offer this piece by someone who used to be an admirer of his. I realize some might question the motives of the author, but Rose has given the world almost unlimited fodder for articles like this.

That’s the last time I will write about this topic.


Sometimes I’m a little too quick to permanently delete emails. I don’t want to have thousands of emails in either my Inbox or Saved email folders.

Unfortunately, I deleted an email that had a tantalizing tidbit about the possible release of a new model from Chevrolet; I was going to offer it was the Malibu, but they are still selling a model by that name. An admittedly brief Internet search did not unearth the story.

The reason I thought this merited a mention was that this new vehicle is to be powered by a good old-fashioned Internal Combustion Engine, a 2.7 liter turbocharged V-6, if I recall correctly. Of course, the same article reported that Buick and Cadillac would be “all-electric” starting in 2030 although GM is playing a little fast and loose with that definition by including hybrids. I want to show a brief snippet of a piece about electric cars from someone in another country (Chile):


“Politicians are forcing electromobility, regardless of whether it’s technically and environmentally sound or not. This is fully in line with the increasing trend toward technically unfounded, purely political decisions, that are increasingly common in many places of the world.  We are living in a strange age when technology and science are as highly developed as never before on earth, but at the same time the people making all-important decisions are increasingly incapable or unwilling to understand even basic technology and science, and decide by feeling, belief and fashion instead of hard facts.”


Bravo! One of the main points this person made is that unless the electricity used to charge EVs comes from non fossil fuel sources, then these cars are not that much better for the environment than modern ICE cars. He also pointed out that no EV actually has the range reported by the manufacturer and that if one looks at the fine print in the ads one will notice a disclaimer like this, “this figure was computed from calculated performance data, or that it is valid with an optional high capacity battery which is not included in the price printed at the top of the page.”

Mr. Chile also wrote, “In short, it’s not a real range you can expect to get under actual, normal, everyday driving conditions. That actual range is shorter, and often very much shorter. Many people who drive electric cars report that with a fully charged battery, the range estimation shown on the dashboard is much lower than the value claimed in the advertising, and that while driving the car the estimation of remaining range drops at a significantly faster rate than the odometer counts up. The final range they can actually achieve is rarely more than 60 to 70% of the claimed range. And on cold days, when they want heating and in addition the battery performance drops, the true range can melt down to 20% of the advertised value!”

I will be, and have been, accused of having a blind spot about electric vehicles. Well, I have no fear of disagreeing with the so-called consensus (I wouldn’t have had a 20+ year career in baseball if I did) and I do not accept politicians forcing their agenda on me. EVs are not the answer.


No, I still don’t have the Z06 and also have no idea when I will. I send a text to the owner of the shop every two weeks. Two weeks ago he wrote that he had “sourced” the parts and expected them to arrive “any day.” Today he simply wrote that he would “check in with his advisor.”

If you asked me today, I would say it’s highly likely I will sell the car almost immediately upon its return. If I buy a replacement what am I most likely to buy?



I think I can sell the Z06 and buy a used (2020 or 2021) Supra for about the same price. I have done some research. My biggest obstacle to buying a Supra is that, in reality, it is a BMW despite the Toyota badging.

I sort of wish I liked the look of the current generation Mustang more, but I just don’t. I could buy a low-mileage 2020 or 2021 GT Premium for substantially less than the Supra, and without the taint of a German make, but the cars just don’t light me up.

Of course, I could feel differently when (if?) my Z06 is actually back in our garage. I would like to read thoughts from you on this topic.







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