Monday, June 6, 2016
They Gotta Have that New Car Bling
YA know how I am always preaching that pretty much all of us are dependent on government hand outs? In my former job as a fork lift operator I worked for a company that sells text books and educational materials. While it might have been a publicly traded company I can assure you 95% of it's gross came from tax payer money.
These days as most of you know I work part time for a car dealership in it's service department. The good part about this job is I don't find myself physically repulsed by the goods or services I am peddling. No more titles such as "Barak Obama: A Black Savior" or "Two Male Penguins in Love" that I have to take from one point and load on a trailer for delivery to children across the country.
No about the only thing I have to watch out for is NEVER telling a customer how I really feel about automobiles, debt, insurance or engines. Even when they ask me point blank for my opinion.
I have been there long enough now to pick up on a few things that are troubling though.
1. I am constantly amazed at the lack of mental stability and/or physical capabilities of people who are allowed to own automobiles. Seriously people I am not talking about someone who suffers from occasional depression or some other low level mental disorder that can be controlled and make the sufferer appear normal. I am talking about people who cannot even control their own physical bodily functions and are not out of the drooling stage. How can anyone allow these people to drive a couple thousand pounds of speeding metal around? Further more where the hell are these types getting enough money to afford these new vehicles? Some of these people are a menace to pedestrians and small animals everywhere.
2. Even at the dealership my salary is basically being paid for by government money. I would estimate 40% or more of our customers are public employees. Another 20% on top of that are contractors and other businesses who rely on big trucks of the F250 or higher range who are either doing work and getting paid directly or indirectly because of government money. Another 30% or more are on disability or pensions of some type (perhaps not all of them are government pensions though) which leaves in my estimation somewhere short of 5-10% from the real private sector.
Simply put without government spending my services would more than likely not even be needed. Another interesting point is the number of State government departments that boast huge departmental garages and yet still require every repair be done by a local dealership.
3. People cannot do basic math. Or if they can then there is some magical numerical factor given to the new car effect that turns straight forward equations into something from the twilight zone. For instance: Three times last week I witnessed customers having mechanical troubles that were out of warranty on perfectly good vehicles otherwise. In each case we are looking at repair bills in or around the 2K range but for vehicles less than 8 years old. In all three cases it was easier for the customer to walk over to the sales side of the dealership and buy a new car with debt than it was to shell out the money for the repairs. In each case the customer, who was now in debt at who knows what rate for the next seven years and probably out 20K or more overall was convinced they had made a good decision.
I just don't get it.
In six years they will be making that jump again I am almost positive of it.
Lastly are the ones who have been talked into too much vehicle. These are the drivers who put 100K miles on a two year old sedan every 6 months and then wonder why it isn't in warranty because they don't have the money to fix it. It's like they never look at the X amount of time OR so many miles part of the warranty.
Oh ya as a side note. We have been going through a real busy period lately now that people have recovered from tax time. So much so the big wigs had to start strong arming the employees into parking in the actual employee lot and not in the customer parking areas. The bitching about door dings on the vehicles reached a climax about the second day. I just don't get this American need for new cars when it is nothing but a liability every friggin day.
Sometimes to make a point I will give myself door dings just for the sheer shock value of it :)
Ok let me clarify that. I DO understand when I see some young guy with a flashy ride because he actually needs his car to increase his reproductive chances but no one else does. It's not even like these new car buyers are leaving the lot with a Shelby or something cool like that. I mean who really cares if you are driving a brand new Edge or Focus or something like that anyway?
People. Vehicles are for transportation only. They are not some extension of yourself and unless you can shell out really big money no one pays a damned bit of attention to what you are driving anyway. Unless it's really bad I guess :)
I can afford to fix either of my late 90's vehicles over and over again up to buying new engines 2 or 3 times a year with the money I save from not having a car loan and not needing the expensive insurance. People ask me all the time how I can afford to only work part time and I start by asking them what their car payments are each month and how much they pay for insurance. I usually don't need to go any further with an explanation to see the light go on behind their eyes.
Keep Prepping Everyone!!!!!!!