The latest yuppie toy is the hybrid car. It allows yuppies to waste money on conspicuous consumption, yet convince themselves they are helping the world. A press release says that hybrid car registrations are up 81%.
Let me set you idiot yuppies straight: you are not making the world a better place by buying expensive cars. You conserve the world's resources by being frugal and not wasting money on stuff you don’t need.
According to MSN Autos, the Prius gets 51 mpg on the highway. But for $9000 less you can get a Toyota ECHO which gets an impressive 42 mpg on the highway, and it uses a plain old gasoline engine.
If you plan to drive the car 100,000 miles, how much would gasoline have to cost before you save money with the Prius over the ECHO? Over $21/gallon.
James Joyner says: “More people are buying hybrids because they've finally more-or-less caught up to regular cars as reliable transportation and offer several advantages like lower gasoline bills and the ability to drive in carpool lanes alone.”
I think I’ve demonstrated that the first part of James’ conclusion is wrong because as economical practical transportation, hybrid cards simply don’t make sense. But it’s possible that people are buying them to drive in carpool lanes, and if so, this is bad government policy.
If people are willing to pay an extra $9,000 to drive in carpool lanes, then the government ought to be selling those rights and using the money to reduce taxes. By giving this privilege away for free, the government is basically stealing money from the taxpayer. The average working American is paying higher taxes so rich yuppies can drive to work faster.