All your automotive stimulus are belong to China

posted at 12:41 pm on January 28, 2013 by Mary Katharine Ham

First, there was the Lie of the Year, which turned out to be true. Mark Hemingway:

Last month, PolitiFact selected its “Lie of the Year.” Given PolitiFact’s dubious record of singling out Republicans for lying far more often than Democrats, you probably could have guessed the winner of this particular sweepstakes was a Mitt Romney campaign ad:

It was a lie told in the critical state of Ohio in the final days of a close campaign — that Jeep was moving its U.S. production to China. It originated with a conservative blogger, who twisted an accurate news story into a falsehood. Then it picked up steam when the Drudge Report ran with it. Even though Jeep’s parent company gave a quick and clear denial, Mitt Romney repeated it and his campaign turned it into a TV ad.

And they stood by the claim, even as the media and the public expressed collective outrage against something so obviously false.

“Public expressed collective outrage”? That’s essentially wishcasting on the part of PolitiFact, nor are they accurately representing what Mitt Romney said in the ad. In fact, here’s PolitiFact’s original “fact check” on the matter:

[Mitt Romney] Says Barack Obama “sold Chrysler to Italians who are going to build Jeeps in China” at the cost of American jobs.

Ok. Now here’s what the Reuters reported earlier this week:

Fiat (FIA.MI) and its U.S. unit Chrysler expect to roll out at least 100,000 Jeeps in China when production starts in 2014 as they seek to catch up with rivals in the world’s biggest car market. …

“We expect production of around 100,000 Jeeps per year which is expandable to 200,000,” [Chrysler CEO Sergio] Marchionne, who is also CEO of Chrysler, said on the sidelines of a conference, adding production could start in 18 months.

So, yes, it’s confirmed that Jeep will be producing cars in China.

As Hemingway points out, one could make the argument that expanding production to China means Jeep is growing, and such moves therefore benefit the company as a whole, but that still doesn’t make Romney a liar.

But there does seem to be a pattern with the companies the American taxpayer is wasting millions on.

There’s Fisker, the electric car company whose Karma costs over $100K, and for that price you get the honor of owning the only car ever to break down on the race track during its Consumer Reports test. Instead of being made in Delaware, as advertised when we gave Fisker $300 million or so in taxpayer-backed loans, the cars were made in Finland. Now, they may move to China:

Fisker Automotive Inc., the struggling maker of battery-powered sports cars, is in talks with several potential bidders as it accelerates a search for buyers and investors so it can keep operating, according to people familiar with the discussions…

A sale of the company is the most likely path, the people said, but it is possible Fisker could remain independent if it finds a partner or investor, the people said. The company is seeking investors even in the case of a sale to make the company more attractive to potential buyers, they said.

Much of the interest in Fisker is coming from China and elsewhere in Asia, where company executives believe there is stronger interest in Fisker’s electric-car technology, the people said. Fisker is also talking to companies in other regions, including the U.S., they said…

Among potential investors, Fisker has been in talks with Chinese-owned auto-parts manufacturer Wanxiang America Corp., one of the people familiar with the discussions said.

If Wanxiang sounds familiar, it could because you’ve been following Obama’s green boondoggles. It was A123 battery company, which made faulty batteries for Fisker, that got $249 million of our money, went bankrupt, and then got bought by the Chinese company in 2012.

We’re roaring back, baby. Glad my money could be a part of it.


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Hey UAW…

ROFL at you.

Bishop on January 28, 2013 at 12:47 PM

THEY LIED ?
…whose going to do anything about it suckers?

KOOLAID2 on January 28, 2013 at 12:47 PM

But OTOH, those Fisker Karmas can instead become a VL Automotive Destino, powered by a supercharged Chevy LS9 V8, from the Corvette ZR1:

http://green.autoblog.com/2013/01/18/bob-lutz-destino-is-the-fisker-karma-people-will-actually-want/

Thank you, Bob Lutz!

Ward Cleaver on January 28, 2013 at 12:47 PM

Bishop!
(:->)

for real!

KOOLAID2 on January 28, 2013 at 12:48 PM

We’re roaring back, baby. Glad my money could be a part of it.

Sadly, none of this is unexpected..although that’s a word I’m sure we will see used a lot if and when this info goes mainstream.

HotAirian on January 28, 2013 at 12:49 PM

…follow the money you dumb suckers!
…give them more…want more…waste more!

KOOLAID2 on January 28, 2013 at 12:51 PM

For years, I’ve been screaming from the rooftops that Obama works for the Chinese government. Maybe I wasn’t loud enough…

Archivarix on January 28, 2013 at 12:54 PM

I’m a sure that that headline is grammatically correct but it sure does read weird.

Cindy Munford on January 28, 2013 at 12:54 PM

I’m a sure that that headline is grammatically correct but it sure does read weird.
 
Cindy Munford on January 28, 2013 at 12:54 PM

 
It’s an internet joke. Something about a Japanese video game translated (poorly) into English IIRC.

rogerb on January 28, 2013 at 12:58 PM

Wanxiang America Corp. has apparently found a good strategy that, unlike South Park’s underpants gnomes, has the missing second step in the profit generating process:

1) Wait for companies that get massive amounts of US tax dollars which they use to fund R&D to fail
2) Pick up the R&D and manufacturing facilities for pennies on the dollar
3) Profit!

Reno_Dave on January 28, 2013 at 1:03 PM

If you have time to read:

http://news.consumerreports.org/cars/2012/03/video-bad-karma-our-fisker-karma-plug-in-hybrid-breaks-down.html

Also, my friend is a Ford mechanic. He notes that when servicing the Electric Fusion, there has to be a second mechanic at his side with a hook to pull him off the car in case it “Discharges”.

Discharges can be caused by something as simple as opening the driver door while fixing the brakes.

can_con on January 28, 2013 at 1:05 PM

rogerb on January 28, 2013 at 12:58 PM

Thank you, all of us old non geek folks appreciate the heads up.

Cindy Munford on January 28, 2013 at 1:06 PM

I’m a sure that that headline is grammatically correct but it sure does read weird.

Cindy Munford on January 28, 2013 at 12:54 PM

All your base are belong to us

Walter Sobchak on January 28, 2013 at 1:07 PM

….And yet,Hopey gets re-elected!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

canopfor on January 28, 2013 at 1:12 PM

Walter Sobchak on January 28, 2013 at 1:07 PM

Thanks, that’s funny.

Cindy Munford on January 28, 2013 at 1:13 PM

Fiskered!!!

can_con on January 28, 2013 at 1:18 PM

This administration won’t be satisfied until we have to rely on the red Chinese and the North Koreans to maintain our weapons systems.

Red Creek on January 28, 2013 at 1:24 PM

Well, the election is over so now the truth can come out.

rbj on January 28, 2013 at 1:25 PM

The Obama way. Not picking winners and losers, just picking losers…for us.

jukin3 on January 28, 2013 at 1:25 PM

Discharges can be caused by something as simple as opening the driver door while fixing the brakes.

can_con on January 28, 2013 at 1:05 PM

I bet Ford gets embarrassed by those irritating discharges.

Flange on January 28, 2013 at 1:26 PM

I bet Ford gets embarrassed by those irritating discharges.

Flange on January 28, 2013 at 1:26 PM

Yes, and the mechanics are going to be the least of their worries:

First responders ‘at risk of electrocution from hybrid and electric cars after serious accidents’

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2254602/First-responders-risk-electrocution-hybrid-electric-cars-accidents.html

can_con on January 28, 2013 at 1:34 PM

Won’t buy an American car .
Will buy a German vehicle …… made in Alabama .

Lucano on January 28, 2013 at 1:41 PM

China should thank us for “stimulating” their economy.

GarandFan on January 28, 2013 at 2:06 PM

All your automotive stimulus are belong to China

Huh?!!?

Girl, did you go to UGA or something? :)

ted c on January 28, 2013 at 2:33 PM

Mary Katherine Ham is the most valuable member of this blog site.

williamg on January 28, 2013 at 3:09 PM

Mary Katherine Ham is the most valuable member of this blog site.
williamg on January 28, 2013 at 3:09 PM

We need more MKH!!! Stop playing on your XBox, you gots some writin’ to do.

can_con on January 28, 2013 at 3:37 PM