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  • Fore! Cash for Clunkers Hits the Links

    This is not a new story from the Wall Street Journal, but certainly one worth noting:

    “We thought cash for clunkers was the ultimate waste of taxpayer money, but as usual we were too optimistic. Thanks to the federal tax credit to buy high-mileage cars that was part of President Obama’s stimulus plan, Uncle Sam is now paying Americans to buy that great necessity of modern life, the golf cart.

    The federal credit provides from $4,200 to $5,500 for the purchase of an electric vehicle, and when it is combined with similar incentive plans in many states the tax credits can pay for nearly the entire cost of a golf cart. Even in states that don’t have their own tax rebate plans, the federal credit is generous enough to pay for half or even two-thirds of the average sticker price of a cart, which is typically in the range of $8,000 to $10,000. “The purchase of some models could be absolutely free,” Roger Gaddis of Ada Electric Cars in Oklahoma said earlier this year. “Is that about the coolest thing you’ve ever heard?”


    The golf-cart boom has followed an IRS ruling that golf carts qualify for the electric-car credit as long as they are also road worthy. These qualifying golf carts are essentially the same as normal golf carts save for adding some safety features, such as side and rearview mirrors and three-point seat belts. They typically can go 15 to 25 miles per hour.”

    There’s more:

    In South Carolina, sales of these carts have been soaring as dealerships alert customers to Uncle Sam’s giveaway. “The Golf Cart Man” in the Villages of Lady Lake, Florida is running a banner online ad that declares: “GET A FREE GOLF CART. Or make $2,000 doing absolutely nothing!”

    Golf Cart Man is referring to his offer in which you can buy the cart for $8,000, get a $5,300 tax credit off your 2009 income tax, lease it back for $100 a month for 27 months, at which point Golf Cart Man will buy back the cart for $2,000. “This means you own a free Golf Cart or made $2,000 cash doing absolutely nothing!!!” You can’t blame a guy for exploiting loopholes that Congress offers.”

    The story speaks for itself for the most part but there are a few points to take away here. 1.) If you subsidize something enough, people will buy it. But that money has to come from somewhere – either from borrowing it or raising taxes. Edmunds.com reports that it cost $24,000 in taxpayer money for each car sold and is now in a back-and-forth with the White House. Edmunds claims cash for clunkers affected the timing of sales more than the volume of sales. 2.) We’re talking about breakdowns in a small scale government program here. Think of the loopholes in a much more complex, convoluted like a cap and trade program.

    Posted in Energy [slideshow_deploy]

    14 Responses to Fore! Cash for Clunkers Hits the Links

    1. Bobbie Jay says:

      How can this be legal?

      Where does it say government can waste the taxpayers money any inefficient, bias, discriminating, reckless, dishonest way possible? It isn't their money!!!!

      We want America back!. Arrests need to be made!

    2. Pingback: PA Pundits - International

    3. Nicolai Alatzas says:

      3.5% growth in the American GDP. Increases in the GDP will in turn increase Jobs. Also home sales are up thanks to the $8,000 first time home buyer tax credit.

      You all need to stop complaining about Americans getting their money back.

      Go fight the good fight and get our troops home which is now 1 trillion spent and counting.

    4. gofer says:

      GDP growth is phony. It's all in govt. spending. It's fake growth spurred solely by govt. programs, not real economic activity.

      BTW, you can get a $42,500 tax credit from Colorado by buying a $100,000 electric Tesla.

    5. Bobbie Jay says:

      Nicolai, you need to stop speculating. What's gonna happen when you don't get your money back? I guarantee, under this government, you WON'T! Consider EVERYTHING THE GOVERNMENT HAS AND IS DOING, NICOLAI! YOU THINK YOU'RE GONNA GET YOUR MONEY BACK IN THE FUTURE?????? Some sound advice, open your mind to the facts and truth!

    6. Pingback: Weekend Opinionator: Was the Car Rebate Plan a Clunker? - The Opinionator Blog - NYTimes.com

    7. Nicolai Alatzas says:

      GDP is not a myth or speculation. Growth is growth….


      Growth = Jobs

      Annual inflation is also down 1.3% after the 1.5% reading in August. It was the seventh consecutive monthly decline.

      Average home prices continue to fall however purchases of homes is up. And will continue to fall for years to come. Some housing markets increased exponentially throughout the Bush Administration. This was spurred by the access to mortgages for the unqualified.

      All administrations from Jimmy Carter to Bush Junior are to blame for this. Each administration increased the accessibility to home loans which eventually led to the crash. This is why I am demanding transparency from the Federal Reserve. The people must have the option to audit the Fed Reserve and see where our money is really going.

      And Bobbie your hardly educating on yourself on the facts. Before you spew venom at me look to yourself and educate yourself with facts.

      All of your posts have zero basis for truth or evidence. You are completely reactionary and lack any basis on your attacks of Government Spending. Post some facts in the future or site some resources and we can continue a civilized discussion.

      And while your at it tell me how the Trillion Dollars on the Middle east wars is going to return a cent to the people of our great country.

    8. Pingback: Stimulus $$$-Golf Carts qualify for Elec Car Credit-Uncle Sam’s Give-Away | Market Addicts

    9. cindy, california says:

      If we had taken all the stimulus money and divided it among ourselves, we would have solved the mortgage crisis, which would save the banks and we all could have purchased a new car and saved the car industry as well. As it stands the real estate market is in worse shape, the banks are in bad shape and the car company's are in bad shape.

    10. Bobbie Jay says:


      Get real, Nicolai. In reality, growth is not growth when there is any loss. WE ARE LOSING MUCH and your ignorance doesn't help. You are only educated in what benefits your selfishness!

    11. Nicolai Alatzas says:

      Bobbie Jay-

      Would you like me to believe that the sky is going to fall because we subsidize electric vehicles?

      Educate yourself-

      Demand Federal Reserve over site

      End TARP

      Hold Financial Companies liable for fraudulent practices

      Demand Clean Cheap Energy

      And learn to stat facts not just the anger that your confusion causes.

    12. Bobbie Jay says:

      Cute Nicolai, cute.

      Peace. I wasn't nice or fair. I apologize…

    13. I love it, thank you for putting this web page together.

    14. CobiaHahfaf says:

      This is a superior article as they all are. I have been wondering wide this for some measure now. Its vast to receive this info. You are fete and balanced.

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