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Hagerty Employee

Avoidable Contact #81: Won't someone think of THE ENVIRONMENT? ’Cause I'm not gonna do it

I'm a big fan of hypocrisy. No, really. Neal Stephenson did a pretty good of summarizing my thoughts on the matter in his novel The Diamond Age, like so:


"That we occasionally violate our own stated moral code," Major Napier said, working it through, "does not imply that we are insincere in espousing that code." "Of course not," Finkle-McGraw said. "It's perfectly obvious, really. No one ever said that it was easy to hew to a strict code of conduct. Really, the difficulties involved—the missteps we make along the way—are what make it interesting. The internal, and eternal, struggle, between our base impulses and the rigorous demands of our own moral system is quintessentially human. It is how we conduct ourselves in that struggle that determines how we may in time be judged by a higher power."


Read the full article on


In a world of Al Gore leaving his swimming pool heater on even when he was in Europe (on important environmental business no doubt) to the tune of a $30k utility bill for at least one year, it'll always be shooting fish in a barrel to attack eco-hypocrites. That said, Mr. Baruth hit it out of the park. Just because they may pitch to you underhand, doesn't automatically mean you'll crush it. Well done, sir.


It is imaginative to think any liberal eco-snobs have the faintest idea what a TRX is, but you know your audience. 

Advanced Driver

* As far as they’re concerned, this sort of monkey business is okay for some people but not for others.*



Intermediate Driver

I've always been amazed by people driving Prius and bragging about "green credentials", while driving that Prius 100 miles a day for business and pleasure. Because he likes to live 50 miles away from his job, that is nicer than a job he could get close to home... 


From CO2 emissions perspective (no, I do not like all the snow melting away), "green" is a guy who buys Anything Hellcat and walks to work. Hellcat awaits weekend or, very occasional, business trip. Like my old, horribly inefficient "sport sedan" with high-revving atmo engine.


I agree with a lot of your points, but disagree with the overall thrust and personalization of it. In the latest poll, 75% of voters (All voters - D's and R's, young and old, etc) were concerned if not alarmed about climate change. 


The issue with personal greenhouse gas emissions is that they affect everyone else in addition to that person.  One of the answers is not to ban any type of automobile, but to increase fuel efficiency standards - and for those who want to buy something that is less efficient, have a carbon fee that kicks in. Then everyone is happy.  


I am also happy to talk about the relationship between climate and electric vehicles if anyone is interested.


A Concerned Parent and Grandparent


Fair enough, but this is where the idea of perspective kicks in. I'm sure you have an idea of what those efficiency standards should be --- but are they based on the idea of every human being on the planet having a car? If they aren't, then it's just back to the old "my consumption level is the right level" bit.
Intermediate Driver

I wouldn't mind the big jack-up pickups so much if they weren't so often driven by a bunch of mindless jackasses.  Just fwiw, I have a 1995 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 with a 454.  It's a Big pickup.  I use it As a big pickup to haul and tow large loads.  I drive it sensibly with due regard for the other drivers that share the roads we all use.  It's not a symbol of my manliness, or a sign of rebellion against authority. It's just a big pickup.  Nothing more.  When it's not being used for what it is designed, I have other more sensible vehicles for those purposes.

Advanced Driver

Well said. One of the casualties of our modern Age Of Hysteria is the concept of Perspective. It's been replaced by Virtue Signalling, which is comprised largely of arrogance and ignorance, and perspective as well.


Jack, Jack, Jack....  (Fine sound of wooden bat striking baseball); It's going, going, GONE!....  See you later it's a Tater!  

Excellent column.  I agree, envy is a large driving force for a lot of the busy body mentality we see in the world today.  It's not just a marketing firm telling me "how white my shirts could be, but he can't be a man 'cuz he doesn't smoke the same cigarettes as me...".  These people take it as gospel and if you don't do what they say is 'the right thing to do' they will cancel you. 


These people don't believe in Freedom of the individual.  Freedom:  As in, what is guaranteed in the founding documents of the United States of America.  If you don't tow the line; whether that line has changed 180 degrees in the last 30 minutes, days or even years;  (Remember when Global cooling was going to usher in a new Ice Age in less than 50 years?) if you don't tow the line now, today; then you are the problem.  

I'm not even talking larger points here, it's happening all over, everywhere.  I drive old cars, all Summer long.  They are well maintained; don't pollute and get reasonable mileage.  Most people smile, wave and some even say "great car" to them, when I'm out and about.  They do get a lot of love.


But I have, on several occasions, been grumbled at, given the stink eye, and even, a couple times, been given the side ways comment about driving the OLD emissions spewing gas guzzlers, by people driving Large SUV's.  I just shrug that off and remember how many tons of material I have recycled in my life and how much less of a 'carbon footprint' my old cars have than someone's new SUV.  


Carbon is another interesting thing.  Carbon is what life is based on.  Without carbon, trees and all other green life (the very life that gives us the oxygen we breathe) can't live.  But, we're told, if you pay a tax, Oops, pardon me, if you purchase a 'Carbon Credit' then your carbon emissions won't matter.   I must have taken the wrong Logic classes or read the wrong books, because that doesn't make any sense to me, but that thinking is a large part of the Climate change religion; apologies, 'Dogma' is a better word there.  


So, I can own and use private planes, have huge houses, grounds, fleets of gas guzzling vehicles, power enormous boats, concert venues, factories, be the poster child of conspicuous consumption, and that's not a problem as long as I pay the carbon tax to the right people?  Huh...  "Hypocrisy":  That was another excellent word choice, Jack.  Love your writing.

Pit Crew

What is the point of this missive?  If you don't like what they say or how they think, don't read their articles.  Who cares if you agree with them (or vice versa)?  Life is too short to get so upset about this kind of thing.

New Driver

Wow! It appears that even Hagerty MUST be a political rag now. And i was foolish enough to think that it could just be about cars...

Turn off the T.V. - take a ride instead.


I think it is a way of the smug to look down on us "regular" guys who couldn't possibly be doing as well as them. I remember in early grade school hearing about the upcoming "second ice age where everything was going to freeze and we were all going to die". Then in late grade school up through my early twenties it was "the world is warming at an alarming rate and we will all burn to death if we don't wear tin foil cones on our heads to protect our scalp from the UV rays". Then by my mid to late twenties it was back to the "second ice age" with a new twist. It would be brought on by "global warming". Finally, by my late 30s, the people who had been going back and forth for three decades on what was going to happen next to scare the living crap out of the uninitiated just gave up and called it "climate change". This way week by week we can get new evidence that we are two days away from either freezing to death, or a thermonuclear meltdown brought on by the sun due to the harmful swamp gases emitted from behind everyone's local Walmart is eminent. This is as bad as the floundering on eggs being good or bad for you depending on which decade you are currently in. I call shenanigans.


Well Said.


I like articles about cars.

Advanced Driver

The least expensive therapist I have ever had...!


Thank You Jack!!!




Problem Solved!!!

New Driver

"Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness" , Live dammit Live!! 


Somebody finally said it, if God didn't want oil or the talent given to those that were able to develop and use it, then none of this would BE THERE so punch the pedal and forget it.

Intermediate Driver

To SteveC, "Your point is . . ."


Your point would be valid, except the kind of people he is talking about are people who intentionally go looking for things to be unhappy about.  And when they are unhappy, they feel it is their duty to impose restrictions on the rest of us.  But these same people are like the Al Gore example, their vices are somehow pardonable or rational.  Your vices are not.

Pit Crew

Environmental issues aside (let’s face it we are on the Hagerty forum, none of us are earning our eco-savior badges anytime soon), whatever happened to trucks? The vehicles that spent more time covered in filth than being clean because they were actually being used for utilitarian purposes. You know, the things that you’d use to haul crap to the dump (or to the recycling station as the case may be), without fear of messing them up. The rigs that usually smelled more than  just a bit off inside the cab due to a bizarre blend of two-stroke premix, combined with  the slime from the soles of your wading boots, all covered with countless layers of dirt from any number of other adventures that you’d rather not subject your car to (you know, when people actually owned cars).


I remember when I was a kid, watching a neighbor clean his truck at a point that was long past the expiration date for the health of those riding in the thing. He proceeded to pull the drain plugs from the floor and spray the thing out with with a garden hose equipped with a power nozzle. Worked like a charm. Now that was a truck!


Regardless of how it is being marketed and sold, who it appeals to, or who it upsets, I haven’t a clue what the RAM TRX is. But I’m pretty sure that it’s not a truck. 


I happen to think that trucks like the SVT Raptor and Ram TRX are obnoxious---and I wish their drivers would operate them a little more considerately, for the benefit of other people---but I *could* get one, and I don't find it preposterous or an affront to me personally that they exist. Moreover, there are so many factors that make up one's environmental footprint, it's impossible to surmise that someone who buys a Ram TRX is fundamentally unconcerned about the environment.

Pit Crew

Is it envy of the TRX (terrible name FCA) or envy of the fact that someone out there might be having fun?  I don't think it would matter if it was a TRX, a Harley Davidson, a pair of dirt bikes or a jetski.   Miserable people are miserable because they mistakenly think they will be happier making holier-than-thou comments and casting themselves as the martyr.  But like drinking soda as a weight-loss plan, the wrong inputs create predictable outputs.  Miserable people could try having fun and enjoying life, I've found it works wonders.  But instead they turn to moaning martyrdom, which is fed by an increasingly large coterie of enabling people eager for the moaners time and attention.   The coterie loves to promise the higher ground, redemption and, well, I don't know what else is in it for them.  Me? I just love the sound of a V8, a flat 6, a turbo 4, even a rotary will do the job.  How can you not smile at that?


I am no defender of Al Gore. I am neither Democrat nor Republican, but a registered independent. My father was a farmer and I grew up in a rural area going to stock and drag races and loving automobiles, and I love taking my '66 IH Scout of the garage when I can.  I don't look down on anyone. My concern is my kids and future descendants, who are already being affected by climate change and who will be affected much more in the future. I would be happy to talk a bit more about climate change and why it is certain and serious, but only if that is something the rest of you would like me to do. 

Advanced Driver

Thank you Jack.  Some people do seem to demonstrate some "cognitive dissonance" when they have to travel - particularly fly - somewhere.  I usually don't feel too bad about sub-15 mpg in the old car or even the SUV, as my employer burned over 700,000,000 gallons of kerosene last year getting our customers where they wanted to go.  (That's no typo - .  I did my part at an estimated 260,000 gallons for 2019.


Agreed, we are living in an age of endless self serving propaganda and hypocrisy. Especially from UN-elected Gov. "Agencies" who push one world gov. agendas that are exclaimed as truth by the man behind the curtain. "Ya Toto, we are NOT in Kansas USA anymore. Oh and by the way careful, you are breathing out C02, best watch out for when they start taxing our breaths.


Let's see, the earth has gone through a couple of ice ages, volcanoes spew out millions of tons of stuff and destroy entire cities, tsunamis rearrange coastlines and asteroids killed the dinosaurs. Yet, we're told that humans can save the planet by wearing a mask and riding electric bicycles. Just think: If we all stand together in New Orleans, holding hands and singing "Give Peace A Chance," the next hurricane will make a U-turn and drown itself in the Gulf. Looking at us as a race from a galactic standpoint, we humans represent less than a single grain of sand in the Sahara, and whatever is in store for this particular rock hurtling through space has already been determined. We don't get to change the outcome, we don't get to steer and any suggestions that we can alter the inevitable is just whistling in the wind. We are along for the ride, end of story. This is not our "practice life;" we only get one shot at this and we owe ourselves a good time while we're here. Be responsible but enjoy it while you can.

Intermediate Driver

Wow, this article really brought out the Trumpers.

Chrysler has aggressively marketed to the redneck market for many years.  That's just the way it is.


And you can tell they are "Trumpers" how, exactly? Please expand on that one.
New Driver

Man, there are some things that I would like to clarify. First of all, carbon is the stuff of life, but when it is combined with O2, it makes CO2, which is completely useless to us humans, and it heats up the planet. This is a FACT, sadly. Breaking up CO2 requires a lot of energy, which is what trees do admirably well. But we are using carbon that was stored underground millions of years ago, and by turning it into CO2, we add more to the atmosphere than all the trees and oceans in the world are able to scrub off. Hence, climate change. 


Now to the "carbon tax": let's say I set up a company that builds CO2 sequestration plants, and then I inject millions of tons of that CO2 underground, in used oil wells, where it will solidify into stone in a few hundred years. Or let's say that my company plants millions of trees all over the world. Now, my company can SELL you "carbon credits", because the CO2 that I take OUT of the environment will match the CO2 that you EMIT into the environment.


So carbon credits are actually the perfect answer to the climate change problem in a capitalist world. If you can buy enough carbon credits to fly your Gulfstream,  or to drive your Aventador SVJ, or your Hellcat Truck, it means that somewhere someone is taking that same amount of carbon out of the atmosphere.


As a car enthusiast, I can see that the way forward is not the usual American swagger dismissive of science. The way forward is to find SOLUTIONS that will enable us to enjoy our cars, our flights and our heated pools while preserving planet Earth in the process.

Intermediate Driver

Another column espousing a tired trope. Those nasty greenies, how dare they shame me? Methinks the shame is the reflection.  You're beginning to resemble Dominic Dunne, minus the clear prose. And you're still alive, or rumored to be.

Intermediate Driver

Jack, this is why you’re the best. Please don’t change. This is so incredibly unpopular to say, so thank you for saying it.