Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Potpourri... Again

Bob Murphy, in his characteristic fashion, uses Paul Krugman's analysis to show that fiscal austerity leads to a robust recovery.

The story of Tesla's crony capitalism takes a sharp turn for the worse
Not content with the billions it gets in government help, Tesla Motors now wants tougher fuel economy standards that would cripple its competitors.
It's just regulatory capture. Of course, such regulations are seldom consistent with what consumers actually want:
Tesla expects to sell about 55,000 cars in 2015. Chevy sold more Silverado pickups — which get a paltry 20 mpg — in one month. Overall, consumers bought about 120,000 plug-in electrics last year, while Ford sold more than four times as many of its F-150 trucks.
The only thing Tesla's "tough" fuel economy standards would do is force millions of consumers to buy cars they clearly don't want.
Then again, Tesla is already heavily dependent on government. As the Los Angeles Times reported earlier this year, Tesla Motors has received almost $2.4 billion in government support in the form of special tax breaks, cheap government loans, regulatory "credits" and subsidies to buyers.
The sad part is, even with all the favors it gets, Tesla can't manage to turn a profit:
The Silicon Valley automaker is losing more than $4,000 on every Model S electric sedan it sells, using its reckoning of operating losses, and it burned $359 million in cash last quarter in a bull market for luxury vehicles. The company on Wednesday cut its production targets for this year and next. 
And speaking of regulation, here's yet another example of how licensure regulations keep the poor from improving their lives.

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