Planet Gore

Arnold Schwarzenegger, Auto Engineer

Detroit, Mich. – The Society of Automotive Engineers is in town for their annual convention and this year’s schedule kicked off Monday morning with Green governors Jennifer Granholm and Arnold Schwarzenegger talking about the future of the auto industry. Welcoming two witch doctors to address an AMA convention would be no less absurd, but in an age when the Green Church dictates engineering goals, I suppose the conference organizers thought it relevant to invite two of its more prominent preachers.
Schwarzenegger tried to soften the crowd with his usual collection of movie-inspired one-liners“The car industry is saying, ‘I’ll be back.’ ”) but there was no disguising his heavy government hand. Detroit automakers, he said, should continue to get federal dollars “if you do it the right way.”
The “right way,” of course, is to make the cars he wants.
He endorsed a federal “cash for clunkers” program to get gas-guzzlers off the road and spur new auto sales, but — realizing that his name is synonymous with GM’s Hummer — was quick to add that the problem is not big vehicles, but what technology powers them.
“There is nothing wrong with the Hummer. The Hummer is a great vehicle. We should change the technology within those vehicles,” said Schwarzenegger who famously has had one of his Hummers converted to hydrogen.
The cost of that conversion? $100,000. The California company that performed the work estimates that, with volume, the cost could be brought down to $20,000 per vehicle. Sound expensive? Just put it on the government credit card.

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