Are Electric Vehicles The New Edsels?

Unleash Prosperity Hotline
Issue #317
06/30/2021
1) Are Electric Vehicles The New Edsels?

What is weird about the debate over electric cars is that everyone (especially in Washington) is for them – except (most of) the people who actually buy and drive cars.

We have nothing against EVs, but all of this nonsense about Americans transitioning from gas-powered to battery cars seems fantastical to us. The Biden projections are that by 2035 nearly every car on the road will be electric.

We were struck by the analysis below showing the dispersion rate of great inventions over the past 100 years or so. The flat line at the very bottom of the chart is consumer adoption of electric vehicles. Battery-operated cars have been available for many decades, but no technology has been slower to catch on than EVs. As we’ve mentioned before in the HOTLINE, less than 2% of cars on the road today are Teslas or the like. 

So at least for the next two decades, Americans will be using tens of billions of gallons of gasoline, and we’re all in for making sure that this energy comes from Texas, Oklahoma, West Virginia, and North Dakota – not Russia, Iran, and Saudi Arabia.

2) Trust-Busters Busted – In Court

Big setback for the “hipster antitrust” theory that the government can simply assert Facebook is a monopoly. 

Judge James Boasberg, an Obama appointee, dismissed the case without prejudice, finding:

Yet, whatever it may mean to the public, “monopoly power” is a term of art under federal law with a precise economic meaning: the power to profitably raise prices or exclude competition in a properly defined market. To merely allege that a defendant firm has somewhere over 60% share of an unusual, nonintuitive product market — the confines of which are only somewhat fleshed out and the players within which remain almost entirely unspecified — is not enough. The FTC has therefore fallen short of its pleading burden.

We will say it again: if Republicans are looking to shut down real and anti-consumer monopolies, how about starting with the public schools and Amtrak. 

Full decision: https://storage.courtlistener.com/recap/gov.uscourts.dcd.224921/gov.uscourts.dcd.224921.73.0.pdf

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