Wednesday, February 10, 2007
[1966 - Ralph Nader testifies to Senate on US automobile industry social irresponsibility]
Uneconomical At Any Speed
More than four decades ago a youthful Ralph Nader appeared before Congress to expose the shameful safety practices of the Detroit automakers. Now that Mr. Nader has become an old curmudgeon, and a perennially unsuccessful candidate for high office, note that the Detroit automakers have marched in lockstep with him. Having resisted most safety advances in the intervening years, it was only government regulation and consumer oversight plus some healthy competition from the foreign manufacturers that made the US-produced cars now on our highway more protective of human life. Detroit built safer cars when they had no other choice.
A decade prior to Mr. Nader's appearance before Congress, William bought as his first car a used 1955 VW Beetle. It got 25-27 mpg around town, and 29-30 mpg on the highway. Today, over half a century later, the Detroit automakers are beginning to produce vehicles with comparable mileage and economy. They continue to resist the mandatory mileage requirements that government seeks to impose in order to reduce the USA dependence on foreign oil.
William's Whimsical Words:
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Last updated on February 10, 2010