Obamateurism of the Day

posted at 8:05 am on April 11, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

Yesterday, readers voted Barack Obama’s Marie Antoinette moment on gas prices and new cars as the OOTW, but it actually gets better. Let’s first remember the advice that Obama gave the man with 10 children who couldn’t afford to fill his gas tank:

“If you’re complaining about the price of gas and you’re only getting eight miles a gallon–(laughter)–you may have a big family, but it’s probably not that big. How many you have? Ten kids, you say? Ten kids? (Laughter.) Well, you definitely need a hybrid van then.”

Since President Obama decided to act as Car Salesman in Chief, perhaps he’d like to recommend a model for the man who can’t afford to buy gas? Actually, that’s a trick question. As it turns out, no one makes a hybrid van for sale in the US (via Instapundit):

Putting the political aspects — a foreign-owned wind farm employing 800 people at the same site which used to employ 8,000 with US Steel, the merits of having more than a single designer baby in one’s comfortable middle age, the idea that the President thinks there are a lot of 8mpg vehicles out there — it does make one wonder: Why doesn’t anybody make a hybrid van? Is there any reason that Toyota sells two entirely different Hybrid Synergy Drive systems in their Camry-based SUVs but doesn’t offer one in the Camry-based Sienna? What about Nissan? Hyundai? Could the Escape’s powertrain move a Flex?

And those are all so-called “mini” vans. Surely the Tahoe Hybrid’s two-mode system could also shove a Chevrolet Express Van down the road to church. Mercedes has been showing a diesel hybrid Sprinter for some time. Why not put hybrid drivetrains in the vehicles where they could do some of the most “good”? In the meantime, families approaching the five-passenger Prius limit may want to consider purchasing the most effective birth control method known to man: a “World Of Warcraft” subscription.

And it’s worth pointing out that hybrids still have to have gas tanks that get filled.  Toyota actually makes a hybrid minivan (which wouldn’t help a family with 10 children) for sale in Japan, which gets 40 MPG, or somewhere around what my old Datsun 210 manual transmission sedan got back in 1981.  No one makes a hybrid van of any kind for sale in the US, and no one makes a large-scale “hybrid van” for common consumption in the world at all.  (There are hybrid SUVs such as the Toyota Highlander, but they only carry seven people, not 12.)   Obama’s “hybrid van” is sheer fantasy, which reflects his energy policy as well.

Got an Obamateurism of the Day? If you see a foul-up by Barack Obama, e-mail it to me at obamaisms@edmorrissey.com with the quote and the link to the Obamateurism. I’ll post the best Obamateurisms on a daily basis, depending on how many I receive. Include a link to your blog, and I’ll give some link love as well. And unlike Slate, I promise to end the feature when Barack Obama leaves office.

Illustrations by Chris Muir of Day by Day. Be sure to read the adventures of Sam, Zed, Damon, and Jan every day!


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Cash Hybrids for clunkers.

itsnotaboutme on April 11, 2011 at 8:08 AM

Third!

Bishop on April 11, 2011 at 8:09 AM

Don’t worry about a thing. Uncle Sugar will tell you what to
drive and how many children to have. Ain’t Socialism wonderful?/

kingsjester on April 11, 2011 at 8:09 AM

I wouldn’t drive a minivan if it ran on air.

Bishop on April 11, 2011 at 8:13 AM

Obama’s “hybrid van” is sheer fantasy….

a new ride at disney perhaps?

cmsinaz on April 11, 2011 at 8:14 AM

ot: mika blaming the ‘white man’ for driving us into the ditch…

staying classy on MJ

cmsinaz on April 11, 2011 at 8:16 AM

Powered by unicorn farts no doubt.

JimK on April 11, 2011 at 8:17 AM

cmsinaz on April 11, 2011 at 8:16 AM

That’s why I don’t watch that bunch of clowns.

kingsjester on April 11, 2011 at 8:18 AM

Utter contempt…

OmahaConservative on April 11, 2011 at 8:18 AM

kingsjester on April 11, 2011 at 8:18 AM

your piece today is spot on with what they were talking about…

*shudder*

cmsinaz on April 11, 2011 at 8:20 AM

“Well, you definitely need a hybrid van then. And make sure its got a sweet sound system with an an eight track. And bubble windows. And vinyl wood panelling on the side. No, I’m not out of touch with current trends; why would you ask that?”

apostic on April 11, 2011 at 8:21 AM

cmsinaz on April 11, 2011 at 8:20 AM

Thanks. But, I’ll bet that did not discuss it from the same point-of-view.

kingsjester on April 11, 2011 at 8:21 AM

kingsjester on April 11, 2011 at 8:21 AM

true….true

cmsinaz on April 11, 2011 at 8:23 AM

Can’t you guys just leave the WRECKING BALL alone?

He just wants to take a quiet walk in the park and watch people.

PappyD61 on April 11, 2011 at 8:27 AM

Right, everyone can afford to trade cars for one of those overpriced hybrids. If you can’t afford gas, why does Obama think you can afford to trade.
And I’m sure the contractors, farmers, sportsman, and any number of others would love to have one of those overpriced pieces of junk hybrids parked in their drive, replacing their pickup.
Maybe the guy with 10 kids can get two, and they could take two cars everywhere they go.
I don’t know what world Obama lives in, but it’s sure not the same one I do.

kam582 on April 11, 2011 at 8:30 AM

PappyD61 on April 11, 2011 at 8:27 AM

“Let them squeeze fruit”

OmahaConservative on April 11, 2011 at 8:31 AM

Hybrid from yesteryear.

Kafir on April 11, 2011 at 8:31 AM

Smartest president EVAH! We should be thanking him.

Naturally Curly on April 11, 2011 at 8:33 AM

What I find distressing is Obama’s complete lack of financial ability. The average person cannot pay for a vehicle simply due to fuel savings. An example:

Assume the Unicorn Rainbow Greenmobile gets 40mpg, and your Evil Clunker gets 10mpg. The difference of 30mpg at $4/gallon saves you $2,266.67 annually. Seems like a big number until you amortize that savings against the cost of the new vehicle. The URG would cost in the neighborhood of $40,000, making the payback period 17+ YEARS. And that’s making the assumption that the URG and the EC are an even trade on car payment (unlikely). Hope that Unicorn can fly for a looooonng time.

Who among us can financially afford to make a 17-year payback decision on an asset currently being depreciated (owned) on a 5-year schedule at best? This means that the poor guy will eat a minimum of $27,200, in this example. And again, assuming he doesn’t have a car payment.

This, my friends, is the real Obamateurism. That he cannot seem to connect the financial dots on the ruinous economic policies he posits as cost savings!!! His policies, if followed, would bankrupt nearly everyone!

Bigurn on April 11, 2011 at 8:37 AM

Minivan =Betamale Mobile.

Badger40 on April 11, 2011 at 8:37 AM

You see how smart and far-ahead he is from everyone else??? He’s like an innovator, an inventor—he’s coming up with such grand ideas that no one else has even heard of! All hail the magnificent power! He’s like da Vinci–who invented the helicopter centuries before it became reality. The world is his canvas upon which to spread his rainbow’d ideas of magnificence and circumstance and before which we shall all stand with mouths agape and wonder just *how* *much* *longer* *we* *will* *have* *to* *wait* *before* *we* *can* *drive* *this* *glorious* *HYBRID*!!!…..

/just spinnin’ the msm narrative 2 hrs ahead of time./

ted c on April 11, 2011 at 8:38 AM

Smartest president EVAH! We should be thanking him.
Naturally Curly on April 11, 2011 at 8:33 AM

The White House probably sounds a lot like The Wizard of Id these days…

“The peasants are revolting, Sire.”

“You can say that again.”

Drained Brain on April 11, 2011 at 8:38 AM

This is a classic example of Obama literally grasping for straws out of the air, since he has absolutely no viable plan as far as what to do about the current gas prices, when the obvious solution would include more drilling off our own coastal shores and the building of new refineries, neither of which Obama wants to do because he knows it would upset his support with the environmental community.

The other option would be to have his Justice Department conduct an investigation to see if oil brokers on wall Street are pulling the same stunt they did a couple years back, which was to falsely inflate the price of a barrel of crude so as to reap in profits for themselves. But fat chance of this happening as long as you have that certified nitwit Holder running the show at that particular department.

pilamaye on April 11, 2011 at 8:39 AM

Bigurn on April 11, 2011 at 8:37 AM

None of these people ever discuss the recouping of the costs in years.
This is why my house isn’t solar & wind powered.
And I live in Wind-Land: ND.
The only way I could ever make this Earth-Firster lifestyle work is if I build an Earthship out of scrounged recycled materials like making a cob house or something (bcs I do happen to have a lot of horse$hit & straw) out of recycled old tires (have access to a lot of those) & use my horses for transportation.
I’d only have to start out for work like 3 hours earlier.
These ba$tard$ won’t be happy til we’re all living the hunter gatherer lifestyle & living until we’re 30yo.

Badger40 on April 11, 2011 at 8:40 AM

Minivan =Betamale Mobile

Manhood
Is
Not
Intact
Vasectomy
Already
Neutered

There. FIFY.

Bigurn on April 11, 2011 at 8:40 AM

Just be glad the president didn’t tell the man that unicorns could transport his family with room to spare.

myrenovations on April 11, 2011 at 8:43 AM

Hybrid from yesteryear would today be outlawed for excessive CO2 emmissions.

Kafir on April 11, 2011 at 8:31 AM

Bigurn on April 11, 2011 at 8:44 AM

Good spin Ted c

cmsinaz on April 11, 2011 at 8:45 AM

Minivan =Betamale Mobile.

Badger40 on April 11, 2011 at 8:37 AM

What kind of vehicle do you expect to be recommended by a man who wears “mom jeans” and rides a girl’s bike?

tpitman on April 11, 2011 at 8:45 AM

2012 …. America will be looking for a trade in for sure……. and it ain’t gonna be for some wimpy, unsafe, eat up electricity, POS “green” crap-mobile either.

Jerome Horwitz on April 11, 2011 at 8:48 AM

My wife and I have three daughters and a 60 lb. dog. When we go on vacations we NEED our minivan. Not that we’d be able to afford one any time soon, but we’ve often asked, “Why aren’t car manufacturers even considering making hybrid minivans?”

As so many posters have already pointed out, this idiotic quote from Obama has to be in campaign commercial after campaign commercial for every Rebublican from the president on down to dog catcher. The more Obama proves his cluelessness on so MANY fronts, it is absolutely depressing that he still manages to get poll results in the 40′s. A whole lot of people must be smoking a whole lot of crack.

kscheuller on April 11, 2011 at 8:48 AM

Just be glad the president didn’t tell the man that unicorns could transport his family with room to spare.

myrenovations on April 11, 2011 at 8:43 AM

Given Obama’s deftness speaking extemporaneously, I’m just shocked he didn’t tell the guy “Why didn’t you just abort five or six of them so you could have fit into the Tahoe hybrid?”

jon1979 on April 11, 2011 at 8:49 AM

Actually, that brings up a good point. I’ve seen plenty of hybrid city buses, and it seems to me that the hybrid concept would get more cost efficient as you scale up the vehicle in question. So, why not a full sized van?
One explanation jumps out at me: hybrids were never about being cost efficient, and their purchases have more to do with bragging rights than bottom lines.

Count to 10 on April 11, 2011 at 8:53 AM

Just once I’d love to hear one of these peeps come back with:
“With all due respect, Mr. Prez, my vehicle gets 20-30 mpg and I still can’t afford to fill both it and our stomachs.”
The squirming would be priceless.

pambi on April 11, 2011 at 8:54 AM

“How many you have?” Rotten grammar.

Anyone surprised he laughed at this guy? He has ten kids! O must love making fun of people who truly love children. He pretends he does things “for the children”, but like any good Dem, he doesn’t want to be “punished” with them.

-Aslan’s Girl

Aslans Girl on April 11, 2011 at 9:00 AM

Funny,

I thought, having ten kids was frowned upon, in Liberal circles?

I mean, after all, the way they caterwauled for them in the budget debate, you’d think he’d give Planned Parenthood a shout-out.

franksalterego on April 11, 2011 at 9:00 AM

hybrids were never about being cost efficient, and their purchases have more to do with bragging rights than bottom lines.
Count to 10 on April 11, 2011 at 8:53 AM

We have a winner!

The fine people at South Park were way ahead on this. There’s an episode where hybrid drivers fart, and then smell their own farts. It’s because they think their $h!t doesn’t stink.

A hybrid anything is possible, but the automakers know it get less practical for bigger personal vehicles over longer distances.

Bigurn on April 11, 2011 at 9:04 AM

You see how smart and far-ahead he is from everyone else??? He’s like an innovator, an inventor—he’s coming up with such grand ideas that no one else has even heard of! All hail the magnificent power! He’s like da Vinci–who invented the helicopter centuries before it became reality. The world is his canvas upon which to spread his rainbow’d ideas of magnificence and circumstance and before which we shall all stand with mouths agape and wonder just *how* *much* *longer* *we* *will* *have* *to* *wait* *before* *we* *can* *drive* *this* *glorious* *HYBRID*!!!…..

/just spinnin’ the msm narrative 2 hrs ahead of time./

ted c on April 11, 2011 at 8:38 AM

Quick!! Someone call Dr. Chu the great oil-well cap inventor and white roof proponent! He can do it… Dr. Chu can do anything!

kringeesmom on April 11, 2011 at 9:15 AM

Obama’s “hybrid van” world is sheer fantasy, which reflects his energy policy life as well.

FIFM

GrannyDee on April 11, 2011 at 9:16 AM

Forgot to add:

FUBO

GrannyDee on April 11, 2011 at 9:16 AM

This, my friends, is the real Obamateurism. That he cannot seem to connect the financial dots on the ruinous economic policies he posits as cost savings!!! His policies, if followed, would bankrupt nearly everyone!

Bigurn on April 11, 2011 at 8:37 AM

You mean….If you can’t afford a tank of gas, you should not go out and by a new car?? Who woulda thunk?

kringeesmom on April 11, 2011 at 9:18 AM

Open up drilling you sh!tstick and put our oil on the market. Prices will start to come down as soon as we announce that we are going to drill.

darwin-t on April 11, 2011 at 9:18 AM

families approaching the five-passenger Prius limit may want to consider purchasing the most effective birth control method known to man: a “World Of Warcraft” subscription.

Or they could just tape a large picture of Barry (or Michelle) Obama to their bedroom ceiling.

AZCoyote on April 11, 2011 at 9:27 AM

I can’t wait to hear all the wisdom he is going to read off the teleprompter Wednesday night!

ladyingray on April 11, 2011 at 9:27 AM

Who’s this guy think he is having ten kids?!

Akzed on April 11, 2011 at 10:02 AM

We drive a minivan and although it is certainly not sexy it is useful. IT is borrowed by friends and we are asked to drive to events because of the sliding doors.
It has no where near the capacity for 10 kids.
Obama is an idiot, over and over and over.

ORconservative on April 11, 2011 at 10:16 AM

You would think the CEO of Government Motors would have known that.

pain train on April 11, 2011 at 10:40 AM

Let’s all drive Rainbow Unicorns!!

Tim_CA on April 11, 2011 at 11:03 AM

Well then little Bammie better just call his car company and get them working on that! I’m assuming that the other primary owner of Government Motors, the UAW, would be okay with building a hybrid van.

slickwillie2001 on April 11, 2011 at 11:38 AM

The hybrid doesn’t recharge on air or pixie dust. Has Obama and his gang of goons even figured out what it will do to the power industry if everybody needs to plug in their cars to recharge? And if people think they can plug in free of charge at work, their employer will experience higher utility bills. Won’t those costs to passed along to their customers? Also, the govt wants to control (via use of smart meters) the times that hybrids are recharged at home. I’d rather fuel up when and where I want.

GrannySunni on April 11, 2011 at 11:54 AM

Bigurn on April 11, 2011 at 8:37 AM

This analysis, which quite conservatively shows a $27,200 loss and a 17 year payback on a hybrid ignores technological obsolescence.

In practice, battery-containing vehicles would probably be worth ZERO in about 5 years…when their batteries would no longer charge. Replacement batteries would probably be prohibitively expensive or unavailable, because battery technology will have changed by then, and newer batteries would require expensive adaptation to make them fit the vehicles physically and electrically.

sarc>
Unicorn-drawn carriages will probably be the best answer…provided the unicorns don’t eat, and provided their rear ends are plugged with a large cork.
/sarc>

landlines on April 11, 2011 at 12:07 PM

Obama’s “hybrid van” entire presidency is sheer fantasy

Fixed

NoFanofLibs on April 11, 2011 at 12:31 PM

Since President Obama decided to act as Car Salesman in Chief

His entire administration is Sanford and Son-like.

He is the Pimp-of-Clunkers-in-Chief.

His administration got started with “Cash for Clunkers”.

Says it all, from then on and on-going. And they are the ‘smart’ communicators and image makers? Right!

p.s. I don’t care if you call me a racist. It’s like water on a duck’s back.

Schadenfreude on April 11, 2011 at 12:49 PM

Watch video to see your Dummy in Chief in action, sans prompter.

Schadenfreude on April 11, 2011 at 12:54 PM

His entire administration is Sanford and Son-like.

Schadenfreude on April 11, 2011 at 12:49 PM

“I’m coming, Wheezie!”

/Dummy!

Christien on April 11, 2011 at 1:14 PM

I hate to hate, but I really loathe this man and his arrogance. While he toddles around on our dime, taking endless vacations, and using high gas mileage vehicles for transport….he ought to be ashamed. Is he? Nope! He’s pompous, arrogant, and an outright f’head.

capejasmine on April 11, 2011 at 2:09 PM

Three years ago, when the libs were ratcheting up every crisis imaginable in support of Zero’s campaign, SUV sales were at rock bottom, along with full-sized and even mid-sized pickup trucks. The dealers cut prices almost in half to get rid of them. While Cash for Clunkers was going on, a friend bought a large SUV for $18k which normally ran near $40k.

A red-diaper co-worker expressed concern over the decision to buy a vehicle which didn’t get 40MPG or more. Friend says “Sure, I could have paid $36k or more for a Prius, for the privilege of having my 6’3″ frame squeezed into an unnatural position for driving. But if your Prius and my “gas hog” both cover 25,000 miles in the next year, I’ll pay about $1,800 more for gas, while you pay about $4,000 more in payments. And what if you and I both decide to take our spouse and two other couples to dinner? You need two cars to do that, and now I beat your effective miles per gallon per person.”

Liberals love emotion, but they hate facts.

Freelancer on April 11, 2011 at 7:14 PM