Friday, August 21, 2009

Exactly what is happening to those clunkers in the "Cash for Clunkers" program?

Junked and Crushed Cars
Originally uploaded by dave_7
The Cash for Clunkers program has been a big hit, evidenced by the fact that the government had to pump an extra $1Billion into the program and that it's due to close just a few weeks after it opened.

Unfortunately my car doesn't qualify for the program - and really I don't want a new car and a new car note, but I've been wondering, what exactly is happening to all of those clunker cars that they're taking off the road?

I've been following up trying to determine, exactly what it is they're doing with those old cars and here's what I've been able to find out:

1) The dealership does something to the car to make it inoperable. Typically they drain the oil, replace it with Sodium Silicate (aka Liquid Glass) and then run the engine until it seizes and is no longer operable. That way they know the car will never run again.

2) Next they get all those cars in a row and head them off to the junkyard where the gas is drained and they compact the car into a cube that's about a foot square.

3) After they get enough of those, they haul them off to the industrial wood chipper where they're chopped up into itty bitty tiny pieces that are then recycled.

But what's happening after that? Where are all those resources going? What about all the metal that's in those cars? Who's getting the benefit of that?

A friend of mine suggested that through the Cash For Clunkers program the government is gearing up for war again, by stockpiling metal....say what? His theory is that all of those clunkers that they wanted to get off the road were huge behemoths that were weighted down by actual metal, chrome and other precious metals. That the government is reclaiming those metals through this program and replacing the cars with those made out of softer non-metal vehicles. Remember when Saturn came out how many years ago with their plastic cars? When was the last time you saw a chrome bumper?

Now Consumer Reports is saying that the government wants your appliances too! And we all know ovens are full of metal.

So what think you? Trying to reduce our need for foreign oil or getting ready for war? There's a conspiracy there somewhere, dontcha think? Plus there's been reports that 4 out of the top 5 selling cars are foreign made - so people aren't even supporting America.

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