February 3rd, 2016

Musk v. Alsop

I have a lot of Issues. And I don't much care for the Model S, because you practically have to lie down when you drive that thing, and when I sat in the back seat, my head touched the ceiling and honestly, I'm just not that tall. I bought an i3 instead.

All that said, when I heard about the Alsop beef with Musk, I went, surely Alsop didn't complain for _that_ stupid of a reason. Ah, but he did!

Here is Stewart Alsop (II) complaining about the Model X launch.

https://medium.com/@salsop/dear-elonmusk-you-should-be-ashamed-of-yourself-ca3d266882a4

"And then, drum roll please, you shuffle out on stage and start with a slide show — an amateur slide show at that — all about how safe the Model X is.

Yup, you lead with safety, like that’s why we’re all spending $130,000 or more on this car!"

Plenty of events start late. Very few events provide Real Food. So complaining about those is just Foolish. But I really feel like no one is addressing the Alsop Is Complaining About Safety aspect of this. Say what ya like, the X is an SUV. Its market is middle aged women. And I have a decent handle on what we care about. Alsop might care about the doors (and I will grant that they are kinda cool, altho I'm much more interested in whether the clearances work in my garage, or when parked at the grocery store, than any other aspect of those doors), but _I_ have been in a rollover in an SUV on the Sea to Sky and if it hadn't been for a well placed jersey barrier, I and my future husband (amusingly, NOT the guy I was dating at the time, and who was the idiot driving) would have landed in the trees or, worse, the drink hundreds of feet below. [ETA: Anticipating some questions: no one was injured, the vehicle was totaled, we had to crawl out through the windows while the vehicle was upside down. Canadians are helpful people, prepared for all events.]

I'm not fucking buying an SUV if you cannot convince me it is Safe. Musk is in good shape for most of my concerns with the X, because batteries lower the center of gravity, reducing rollover risk. And the driving position in the X is mostly upright, addressing my primary annoyance with the S.

A variety of people are suggesting that Musk is being petty for canceling Alsop's order. I think he's just saving his people a long term hassle with an asshole customer. I've met a variety of business people over the years who fired obnoxious customers. It's basically always a good idea.

I am a little surprised to find myself arguing in favor of Musk in a tiff, but there it is. Turns out there are people out there I like a whole lot less.

Oh, Vox. Are your writers just young? Or intentionally deceptive?

So I ran across this piece over at Vox.

http://www.vox.com/2016/2/3/10899790/single-payer-americare

I've gotten kind of interested in the health care proposals being batted around on the Democratic side for several reasons. (1) (Statistically) Nobody gives a fuck. There's a ton of polling being done about whether the American electorate cares about ACA/Obamacare/etc. this election cycle and they don't. So it's interesting that so much candidate time is devoted to it this cycle. (2) Vermont has abandoned single payer/Medicare for all, and Sanders is conspicuously not talking about that. (3) Any modification to ACA to extend coverage is likely to trigger middle class tax increases. And that may very well be a third rail at the moment.

This Vox article digs back into 2006 for a Pete Stark proposal. You can read the details. They don't matter. If you're kinda old, like me, and you were paying some attention to the first time we went round on health care with the Clintons, you are probably thinking, um, Pete Stark. Gimme a sec. There should be something in my memory about him, I just

OH WAIT THAT IS WHAT GOOGLE IS FOR

Pete Stark is a crazy asshole who sniped at health care from the left back in the 1990s.

http://www.nytimes.com/1993/02/28/business/hillary-clinton-s-potent-brain-trust-on-health-reform.html

http://articles.latimes.com/2014/mar/14/news/la-pn-clinton-documents-no-lunch-20140314

If you think that you are going to sell Clinton on a Pete Stark proposal, you are an idiot with a short memory. And HRC is a very smart woman with a long memory.

Give it up. We're gonna have ACA for a long, long while. And that's not such a bad thing.

Now if we can just convince the people over at Vox to start googling people before they go around blathering about their brilliant ideas, things could really improve.

ETA: I think it's okay to call Pete Stark names, because Pete Stark doesn't have any problem calling other people names.