Sorry to subject you to multiple pictures of Hillary Clinton, but it’s part of the article and it’s a good article. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:
Americans’ love affair with the car has cooled off but not because Americans don’t love cars. Rather, it is because of what cars have become.
Once, they were like the pretty girl who smiled at you in class, back in high school. They made your pulse uptick, filled your mind with happy possibilities. You wanted one. And – once upon a time – the one often led to the other.
Or at least, helped.
Now, cars are like a sourpuss pants-suit-wearing wife who long ago stopped smiling at you – and bats away your hand when you try to hold hers. You don’t want to see – much less hear her anymore – and wish you could get away from her, but you need to stay married for the sake of the kids or so as to avoid losing your shirt.
This transition occurred because of the sourpuss, pant-suit-wearing types, not necessarily your wife – which makes it even worse.
Pants-suiters such as Joan Claybrook – the old sourpuss who headed the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (italics added for the should-be-obvious reason) back in the ‘70s, when saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety – as defined by some old sourpuss – somehow became a function of government, formerly concerned with ensuring that people’s rights were respected and dealing with people who caused harm to others.
Claybrook was a disciple and acolyte of another pants-suiter who happened to be male, nominally – Ralph Nader. He was the John the Baptist figure of Safetysim, the cult which first ruined cars and is now ruining everything else.
Nader anointed himself a “public citizen” and began to “represent” the “public,” despite not one member of the actual public ever having voted to give this man proxy power to “represent” them or anyone else. He and his termagant protege began to agitate for the government to impose (via regulations) “safety” standards upon new cars; which is to say, to impose them upon new car buyers – most of whom had previously expressed no interest in them, as via a willingness to pay for them. And who may have had a very different view of what “safety” constitutes.