Sunday, March 25, 2012

Market test? Naw!

Businesses and products fail all the time.  Good thing.  The error-correcting market is all we have.  But when it comes to green and electric cars (and industrial policy), some people cannot grasp the idea of a market test.  They reach for the conspiracy instead.

Now that the heavily subsidized Chevy Volt is not selling, what gives?  The New York Times' John Broder ("The Electric Car, Unplugged") does it again.  He goes to the source.  He ends his report by ominously quoting Chris Paine (who made the "documentary" "Who Killed the Electric Car"?):
But one possible culprit still stands to gain if the electric car is killed yet again, Mr. Paine suggested.
“Not too hard to guess,” he said. “With Americans paying $250 a month to fill up on gasoline when electricity can do the job in a Volt for $50 a month, why are we being told electric cars are failures? Who could possibly be behind this?”