Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Michigan and Miles Per Gallon

Today the average mileage per gallon for an American vehicle is only 20mpg. How will we deal with this statistic in the future as gas price averages continue to rise? The Big Three have clearly missed out on what American consumers will need on into the future. We will see consumer behavior modifications among the middle class and below. That is, that people will drive less and when it comes to choosing a new car they will buy one from a foreign owned auto maker. Even though the Clinton years were great and gas prices were low, the Big Three made the mistake of building huge inefficient SUVs as a trendy choice (not a rational choice) for the American consumer. And because Michigan has never invested in any useful means of mass transit systems, people here suffer the only source they have as means of getting around. Detroit, Flint, and Saginaw were all designed around the understanding that independently people can purchase a car and get around on their own. Well, look at those cities now, they are decimated economically. And when profits for the Big Three were low they outsourced plants and jobs elsewhere. When auto makers complain about the cost of union wages and the expenditures of health insurance, it’s only an excuse to poor organizational marketing and the failure to predict future consumer needs. This is why Michigan suffers high unemployment, poverty, and social inequality. New technologies and legislative mandates need to be sought out at the state level to establish mass transit systems in our impoverished cities as well as efficient vehicle standards. This will enable the working poor to be transported to their work environments, as well as put pressures on the remaining Big Three to make cars new market pleading for cars that get better gas mileage. It is my hope that future bureaucrats in this state will consider such a change for a new Michigan.

-Andrew Thibodeau


Blogger John B. said...

And, of course, the very weak compromise of an energy bill that builds loopholes into the CAFE standards may not be enough to push the Big Three in the right direction.

Yes, we need to do more as a state to move Michigan forward. Nice thoughtful post that raises some points some of our unions and automakers would rather put on the back burner.

6:21 AM  

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