23 January 2008

What the presidential candidates are driving

The Chicago Tribune has a searing piece on several presidential candidates and their rides:
Presidential candidates and their cars
[On the home page it's under "Gasbags: Pols and their cars." Guess they felt they needed more to grab your attention.]

I'm actually... impressed? Is that the right word? To describe the way I feel about anything related to Huckabee? First this:
"Our main car is a 2007 Chevy Tahoe flex-fuel."
Well, duh, he's the Republicanest Republican in the running--of course he's going to drive the almost-latest model GMC big-honkin' truck. God Bless America, and so on. No surprise there. What kind of surprised me was what came after that:
"Then my vehicle is a (1995) Chevrolet Silverado truck"
The Trib goes on to berate him for driving a vehicle that gets all of 12 miles to the gallon, but hold the phone--a '95 Silverado? His non-family-vehicle main ride is a '95 Silverado? How many people do you know drive a '95 anything anymore? Now there is a man who loves his truck.

Mr. Huckabee, I underestimated you. That's no sham you're pulling to pander for votes--you're the real deal, and in some perverse way I almost have to respect that. Unless you bought that thing used last year or something, in which case I despise you as much as ever. Damn, now I'm going to spend the rest of the day driving myself crazy wondering about the story behind the Huckabeemobile.

Update: Fritz says Huckabee bikes to work and to the grocery store, in addition to driving those big trucks. (In fact, so does Grist, but it's buried under their general disapproval of his stance on energy.) Well, shoot, between him and Giuliani, why aren't the Republicans really gunning for the green vote? The Democrats are whoring themselves out for it, but they seem to be less and less resolved every day to really follow up on any of their brilliant ideas. I reiterate my strong dislike of our color-coded issue system.

Now, you're probably all going to assume that I really ought to be supporting Giuliani:
"The former New York City mayor says he doesn't own a car: 'I don't drive. I navigate,' he told The Associated Press in May."
In lieu of a car there's a nice photo-op photo of him walking to his campaign tour bus. Admirable, yes, but really not a slam-dunk for my vote, sorry. I cringe at the thought of that guy leading the country. I may be carless, but I have to cross the line somewhere.

Now, Obama drives a car that looks awfully familiar:
"This finger-wagging came from a speaker who arrived in a Secret Service convoy of Chevy Suburbans (averages (12 m.p.g.). More embarrassing was the car in Obama's garage: A gas-guzzling, 340 horsepower Chrysler 300C. When his choice was exposed, he bought a more politically correct Ford Escape Hybrid SUV (averages 27 m.p.g.)"
Of course he did, he's a Democrat running for President. (See Huckabee above.) But say, wasn't I nearly swiped by an enormous Chrysler sedan on Lake Park Ave. a couple of summers ago? Possibly while Obama was in Chicago for some reason? Yeah, I know, it could have been anyone and was probably somebody else. There are already plenty of classy luxury cars zooming around Hyde Park like the occupants are simply too important to yield to any of the other poor schmucks on the street, and don't you ever let anyone tell you otherwise.

In any case, I can't say I'm really surprised by any of this. (With the exception of the Huckabeemobile, of course. I mean, damn! Just can't get over that.) Is it any revelation that politicians, you know, say one thing and then do something else that's like the exact opposite? Come on. I'm sure even Giuliani has somebody on call who can drive him somewhere.

Now, here is something truly remarkable: the congressman who bikes to work. Someone should talk him into organizing a Bike to Work Day at his workplace. That would rock.
In extremely local news, is your head spinning yet?
Hyde Park Progress:
Looking Back on 47th Street: Risk and Corruption on the South Side

I think sometimes I waste too much time trying to figure out money, real estate, and politics because I somehow got it into my head that being a Real Adult meant having a grip on those things (mostly in that order). I couldn't tell you where the heck I got that idea, but clearly it's absurd. Only some kind of evil genius would be capable of understanding and manipulating the whole mess. (And yet I keep trying.)


At 24 January, 2008 11:55, Blogger Fritz said...

Romney is the son of a Detroit auto exec and former Michigan governor. When he was stumping for votes last week he promised to roll back all of those nasty regulations that are hampering Detroits ability to make money, including fuel economy and clean air standards.

Huckabee has the big Silverado, but as far as I know he's also the only candidate who rides his bike to work and the grocery store. Obama talks the talk of giving more to "alternate modes of transportation", but Huckabee is the only one walking the walk of bicycling and walking for transportation. I imagine that would change on the slim chance he wins the presidency, and of course that's not necessarily a good predictor of the policies he'll promote.

Ron Paul is irrelevant now, but he's big into bikes for recreation.

At 24 January, 2008 14:55, Blogger Jennifer said...

Huckabee bikes to work and the store? Cool! How have I not heard that yet? I don't think all those enviro-liberal email newsletters I get ever mentioned it. You'd think they would, if only for the shock value.

Far as I'm concerned, Obama is probably just your basic Chicago machine Dem who's all smooth talk and no action, but he's so dang good at it.


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