I’m Ecstatic Over Ending Subsidies for Electric Cars

RUSH: I have to tell you, I am ecstatic that President Trump is finally holding over the heads of these automakers the subsidies the federal government extends for electric cars. If it weren’t for federal subsidies, there wouldn’t be a Tesla.

And now General Motors is starting to play games, “Well, you know, we’re having trouble making our nut here.” You’re having trouble making your nut because you made decisions to build cars when that fool Obama was president and gas prices were soaring because the economy was tumbling. And so you figured, “Hey, we’ll combine our belief in global warming, we’ll get the Millennials on our side and we’ll start building a bunch of cars that nobody wants but that they’re gonna have to buy because gasoline is gonna be priced out of existence.”

Well, guess what? Obama is now doing seminars for 1,000 people at Rice University lying through his teeth about things, trying to claim credit for the Trump economy! Gasoline prices are down. Oil production is way up. And electric cars are not necessary. Ford, which didn’t fall into this trap is still making its nut with the big F-150 truck and SUVs, but General Motors decided to play the public PR game of going all-in on electric.

Even Obama, when he was president, he promised to buy a Chevy Volt when he left office. He said there was no reason to buy a car when I’m president because I can’t drive it. But when I’m out of the White House, I’m gonna buy a Chevy Volt. He didn’t buy a Chevy Volt and now nobody can because they stopped making ’em. You know why? Because nobody wanted ’em.

Now, I don’t want anybody to misunderstand me here. I don’t have an animus toward General Motors and certainly not the people who work there. But this whole notion that we have been subsidizing the electric car business — and who knows whatever else — because of this hoax and phony climate change rotgut all for PR connections rather than actual sound business decisions, it’s all coming home to roost here.

And it’s about time that stuff that nobody wants stopped being subsidized. Well, stuff that nobody’s buying. Certainly not in the quantities that we were all led to believe. I’ll never forget — by the way, this isn’t even what I intended to talk about. I just wanted to let you know I was gonna talk about it. But once I get started here I get revved up.

Do you remember the day where the first Chevy Volt before they actually produced a consumer version of the vehicle, they had a prototype, and they drove it on a gasoline or diesel powered truck to Washington, and they parked it in front of the capitol building. And then a bunch of Democrat congressmen got in the thing and drove it for 10 feet each.

And it was to herald the new era of American electric cars, the future. And I remember having little fun and poking fun at it. And Bob Lutz who, I mean, I used to be a good friend of the guy, turned on me because I began to make fun of the Volt. He started blaming me for some problems.

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RUSH: President Trump is threatening auto manufacturers with the loss of federal subsidies over these electric vehicles that nobody wants. Well, sorry if you do, but most people don’t.

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RUSH: Let’s move on to the subsidies for electronic vehicles story here. Folks, I am so happy that Trump has woken up or awakened, whatever, to this gigantic wealth transfer known as electric car subsidies. Now, I need to say something at the outset here. I am not opposed. If you like electric cars, that’s fine. If you want to go buy one, that’s fine. I’m all for freedom. Freedom of choice. If you want to think that you’re saving the environment, you go right ahead. I’ll try to talk out of it, but if you want to drive one of these things, have at it.

I’m not gonna castigate. I’m not gonna make fun of you. I’m not gonna mock you except if you think you’re somehow saving something by doing so. This is the most asinine, ridiculous thing that I’ve seen. It’s yet another illustration of the lack of critical thinking. “Why electric cars?” “Because it saves the environment. Because it doesn’t burn fossil fuels.” “Really? What’s in it?” “Batteries, Mr. Limbaugh! Batteries — and there are no fossil fuels in batteries, Mr. Limbaugh. You drive up and you connect the big hose and it charges them. Electricity comes from a giant source to the battery in the car.”

“Right. Okay. So the people charging that battery before you pull up to the charging station, where does the electricity that’s in the battery that ends up in your car battery, where does that come from?” “Another battery, Mr. Limbaugh.” “No, no, no. It’s coming from coal-powered, fossil fuel-powered power plants. There’s not a single savings of fossil fuel. You still have to charge a battery, and those are done via electricity, and electricity is not generated by battery. It’s generated by fossil-fuel-powered power plants, coal-fired power plants, to be specific.”

The more electric cars out there, the more coal that is being used, and yet people believe that they are eliminating the burning of fossils by buying electric cars. Fine. You’re free to think that. You’re free to be ignorant about it. It’s fine with me. Where I draw the line in this is where we as taxpayers are told that we have to subsidize this because we are destroying the climate, we are destroying the planet, and these new vehicles are the only way to save the planet. So we’re gonna start subsidizing these things left and right.

This all got started over the recent discussion of General Motors closing five plants. Trump getting very mad at them for doing this. He tweeted out some caustic criticism of the CEO GM, Mary Berra, and suggested that maybe she want to close a plant or two in China instead of a factory here in Detroit, Michigan. Now, why is General Motors in this problem or whatever? It’s very simple: Barack Hussein Obama, who today is trying to make everybody think that the United States’ new number one ranking as an oil nation is because of him.

(imitating Obama) “I did that. I’m the one that was responsible for all of the new drilling.” No, Mr. President, you wouldn’t open a single pipeline. You made fun of people who said just drill, baby, drill. You said, “Drill, baby, drill” is not the answer. You were pushing all these alternative energy forms. You were trying to eliminate the use of fossil fuels and oil, or at least make people think you were. So what happened was that during the Obama administration, with his all-out assault on coal — and he warned everybody he was gonna make coal so expensive that you could not make a profit in the business.

If he succeeded, the coal business would be shut down. And he gave it his best shot. And Trump reviving it is another reason why Trump got elected! So with Obama working his magic, the price of gasoline was skyrocketing and the price of oil was skyrocketing. And as the price of gasoline goes up, people change buying habits and they change driving habits. And exactly as the electric car lobby wanted, as the price of gasoline goes up, then the PR push for electric vehicles ramps up, and people are told that they can escape the high price of gasoline and the scarcity of oil. Oh, yeah, we’re gonna run out soon, you know, ’cause there aren’t anymore dinosaur fossil fuels left to be discovered.

So people start deciding, “Okay. Well, I’ll go out and buy an electric vehicle.” Then Trump gets elected, changes the focus on everything, puts the focus back on fracking, the focus back on development and refining of oil. We have more than we know what to do with. We’ve got more natural gas than we know what to do with. We are swimming in brand-new discoveries of fossil fuels. We rival Saudi Arabia. Price of gasoline’s come down. Electric cars are less and less attractive.

Problem is, General Motors decided that Obama was the future and retooled everything for a high price of gasoline per gallon, and they ramped up their electric vehicle unit. They even got a promise of Obama to buy a Chevy Volt when he left office. He hasn’t bought one yet, folks. He promised. He did promise to buy a Chevy Volt. He didn’t buy one when he was president because the Secret Service wouldn’t let him drive. But now he can drive; so he can go get one.

But he didn’t. And now they’ve shut down manufacture of the Volt. And they’re having to close factories largely because of their decision to go electric in so big a percentage of their fleet. Meanwhile, Ford decided to go all-in on SUVs and trucks, the famous Ford F-150. They’re just going gangbusters. So General Motors is closing down plants or saying they’re going to, and Donald Trump has decided to hold over their heads the subsidies they were getting to build electric cars.

Do you know, folks — you may not know this — Elon Musk has had subsidies for Tesla in the billions of dollars! I’m not arguing whether he’s a genius or not, whether he’s a smart guy, entrepreneur or any of that. I’m just saying that if it hadn’t been for subsidies, i.e., basically people paying him money that he could not earn from selling cars — then there wouldn’t be a Tesla. Now, the subsidies that General Motors got in no way approach the subsidies that Elon Musk got.

But the headline of the story here is: “Trump Targets GM’s Subsidies — The fallout is real for General Motors, which announced plans to ax ~14,000 jobs and close manufacturing plants in the U.S. earlier this week. Shortly after, President Trump said he told GM it’s ‘playing around with the wrong person,’” meaning him. Trump tweeted, “Very disappointed with General Motors and their CEO, Mary Barra, for closing plants in Ohio, Michigan and Maryland. Nothing being closed in Mexico & China.

“The U.S. saved General Motors, and this is the THANKS we get! We are now looking at cutting all @GM subsidies, including for electric cars. General Motors made a big China bet years ago when they built plants there (and in Mexico) — don’t think that bet is going to pay off. I am here to protect America’s Workers!” Now, the Washington Post: “If it becomes reality (a huge ‘if’), Trump’s threat to cut electric vehicle subsidies could spell trouble for GM. That’s because…”

Are you ready for the news here? “[A]s of right now, consumers who buy fully electric vehicles (like GM’s Chevy Bolt) are eligible for a federal tax credit of $7,500. But…that credit begins to phase out after an automaker sells 200,000 eligible electric cars. Tesla already hit that 200,000 mark, and GM was less than 4,000 vehicles away from the cap as of” the third quarter of this year. We’re still talking a paltry number, and do you realize that all of this is politics? Without subsidies, there wouldn’t be been electric cars in the first place because nobody wants them yet.

But if you’re gonna offer people a $7,500 subsidy or cash back for going out and buying one, you’re gonna get some takers. But 200,000 vehicles compared to the amount of cars and trucks sold every year in America? You could put ’em in a thimble. It’s nowhere near the definition of a successful business. But the manufacturers need those subsidies, because electric cars — they’re not cheaper. And they’re a lot more inconvenient. Again, I don’t want anybody to misunderstand. I understand a lot of people love ’em. A lot of people are into ’em.

A lot of love the fact that they’re quiet and that they’re cool and you think they’re technological innovative and all that. That’s fine. Please do not misunderstand me here. I’m not ripping anybody for buying one ’cause I believe in freedom, liberty, pursuit of happiness, and if that’s what makes you happy, fine and dandy. What I draw the line at is being told, being lied to that these things are overwhelmingly popular when they’re not. We have to subsidize them. And then you bring in the whole climate change aspect of this which cannot be denied. Now we enter fraudulent hoax territory.

Yeah, there’s PR to be gained. Yeah, I’m saving the environment by manufacturing and selling electric cars. But there’s no saving the environment. You cannot have an electric car and you can’t charge the damn thing without using a hell of a lot of coal or oil or natural gas. You know how many people don’t know that? You’d be stunned, particularly in the Millennial population who have no idea that there is any coal used at all in using a product that has a battery that has to be charged.

They don’t even think about it. They’re never told. They’re just told it’s like magic. It’s clean. There’s no pollution. There’s no exhaust. There’s no filth, any of that. It’s really, really, really clean. Well, maybe. But in order to get that battery in your car fully charged, you gotta burn all of the coal or a lot of oil. Anyway, the president is threatening these subsidies, and I’m glad that he is. It’s about time somebody has the gonads to use these as leverage!

But it’s one thing to talk about it. Let’s see if he and the GOP will do something about it. I think they need to get rid of all these big subsidy suckers, not just GM, but anybody else who’s getting a federal subsidy on basically a political idea or objective. ‘Cause there’s nothing — it’s just like windmills. You think you can build an airplane, a jet airplane that can get off the ground that does not use fossil fuel? You think you can come up with a cargo truck? “Yes, Rush. Tesla has one.” Yes. Tesla’s truck looks pretty cool. And, man, does it really go. It goes 60 miles and then you gotta stop and charge that sucker, or maybe a hundred or what have you.

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RUSH: In the meantime, back to the phones. This is Tim in San Antonio. It’s great to have you with us, Tim. Hi.

CALLER: Fastest three decades and mega dittos, Rush.

RUSH: I thank you, sir.

CALLER: The problem with our battle against the global warming people is that we’re trying to wage this battle on a scientific front. They kind of have that sewn up. I don’t think we’re gonna make much headway there. But if we look at it economically, what they’re saying is that the destruction of the environment is going to end up in the deaths of millions of people over a period of time. And what they would have us to believe, if we reverse all of this and we stop using, you know, fossil fuels and so on, that the environment will survive and all these people will survive.

The problem is that when you remove the fossil fuels from the equation, you remove the majority of the support for the seven and a half billion people that live on the planet. Without fossil fuels, you cannot support that population. And so one way or the other — and this is the absurdity of their argument — one way or the other people are gonna die. If you take away all of the technology and the support that we have now, you cannot support seven and a half billion people.

RUSH: No. Certainly not. You can’t even support a growing number of people, which fossil fuel usage makes possible. All you have to do — by the way, if you doubt what Tim here is saying, go to a Third World country that has oil that is not being allowed — and you can find a couple of these in Africa — you would not believe, the militant environmentalist wackos are preventing modernization of overall societies.

They are preventing the usage, the discovery, the mining or the drilling of oil or coal to save the planet, climate change, and these societies are remaining forever in poverty. They are filthy. They live in squalor and pollution. And this is being done by militant environmentalists who are leftists who claim to care about the little guy, claim that all of this is to extend life and save — they haven’t been right about anything. The population grows, and so does the discovery of food and minerals and other things necessary to support life. It continues to grow as well where there are free markets for that to happen.

But, you know, you raise an interesting point. What is the objective of the climate change? What are people, this lobby, what are they trying to do? Well, they claim they’re trying to eliminate the use of fossil fuels so as to stop the inexorable greenhouse gas warming of the planet, which will kill people and make habitation impossible and so forth. The real objective of this by the people organizing this is a pure anti-capitalist and anti-America political movement that is designed to impoverish the United States of America. I know you find that hard to believe, but that’s the true objective of the issue.