Friday, October 23, 2009

Micromanaging California Is NOT Cool

CARB is at it again. At a time when California is reeling and on the brink of collapse, CARB is moving forward with what can only be called a silly distraction.

The agency wants to pass a regulation (just what California needs—more regulation) requiring car windows to be coated with a metallic glazing compound.

The idea, apparently, is to keep cars cooler requiring less air conditioning use which would save gas and cut down on fluorocarbons from air conditioners.

Dubbed the “Cool Cars” initiative, this will cost consumers more money at a time when money is tight, and it will add to the cost of a vehicle (one more line item on sticker price). But how much effect will it have? Will drivers truly stop using their air conditioners?

If the recent ban on handheld cell phones in cars—which appears to have about 1% compliance where I live—is any indication, regulations don’t change consumer behavior.

Opponents of the proposed reg point out that the new glazing wreaks havoc on cell phone signals, gps signals, and just about any other wireless gadget /toy that Californians rely on in their cars.

So we are now facing a potential ban on big screen TV’s and mandatory window glazing in cars.

Is that really the best use of our legislative and regulatory resources at time when the state is literally about to collapse under the weight of fiscal deficits, underfunded pensions, decaying infrastructure, overcrowded prisons, lack of health care, hopelessly challenged schools, devastating out-migration, and an overall lack of resources?

In this context, the Cool Cars initiative is anything but cool...

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