July 28th, 2009
06:00 PM ET

Is cash for clunkers a good idea?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

The "cash for clunkers" program is a win-win situation for everyone. That's according to the government - which says the $1 billion plan will help the environment, automakers and drivers who want to trade up out of their old cars.

Cars bought through the program must get at least 22 miles per gallon, like this Ford Focus. Rules are different for trucks.

Under the plan - taxpayer money will be used to give people a credit of up to $4,500 to replace their gas guzzlers. The idea is they use that money to buy certain new vehicles that are more fuel efficient.

The traded-in cars have to be less than 25-years-old; and their titles can't have any liens.

The program already has about 16,000 registered auto dealers signed on; and some say showroom traffic is already up since the program's official start on July 1.

About 250,000 cars are expected to be junked through this program before it ends on November 1. This will hopefully jump start auto sales - which have been down about 35-percent across the industry.

But not everyone is so sure that "cash for clunkers" is a good idea. Under the plan - the gas guzzlers must be destroyed. Some auto recyclers say they'll lose a lot of money in sales from old engines and other car parts.

They also say the program will hurt lower-income buyers who can't afford a new car - even with the government credit, and they say that destroying cars will drive up prices for spare parts.

Here’s my question to you: Is cash for clunkers a good idea?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Keith writes:
Cash for old and inefficient cars that do nothing but spew noxious fumes into the air is a great idea. Maybe the stimulus package could be expanded to include old and inefficient politicians who also spew nothing but noxious fumes.

Mike writes:
Disappointed as I am that my ‘97 Wrangler isn't on the list (even though a ‘98 is), I think it's an excellent program that goes right to the need. For once, the people most likely to benefit are the working poor and lower middle class while the economic stimulus generated helps to preserve the jobs of the very same people.

Jeff writes:
No, it's not a good idea. Win-win situation for everyone? It's not helping me out any. Who pays for this? The government. Where does the government get its money? You and me. So, if you don't have a clunker then you’re paying for others to get rid of theirs.

Mitchell from Connecticut writes:
Yes, but it would be better if more vehicles qualified for the trade-in. My 1994 (no typo) Toyota Corolla wagon has 166,000 miles on it, but because it gets more than 18mpg it doesn't qualify. A neighbor's Hummer does, though. Great.

Charles writes:
I am 63-years-old and I didn't think I could ever justify buying a new car. This program convinced me otherwise. I got rid of a gas guzzler and have a new vehicle, which is much safer and more efficient.

Greg writes:
Cash for clunkers, great idea. How much do I have to pay to get rid of you, Jack?

Buster from Poughkeepsie, New York writes:
Settle down, Jack, that sleek and sexy horse and buggy you drive doesn’t count as an old clunker.

Filed under: Auto Industry
soundoff (182 Responses)
  1. Kevin in Dallas, TX

    Getting old high pollution cars off the road is a good thing. Hopefully they'll be replaced with more economically friendly cars with better mpg, but I who knows.

    July 28, 2009 at 1:12 pm |
  2. Charles, Lansing, MI

    This is another swindle for the American taxpayer. I resent that my taxes are being used to buy Japanese and Korean vehicles. Whether or not they are manufactured here the profits go to Asia. And it only helps the people who can afford to purchase new cars anyway. The oldest gas guzzlers will still be on the road.

    July 28, 2009 at 1:15 pm |
  3. Terry from North Carolina

    Maybe we should do this with some of our politicians !

    July 28, 2009 at 1:19 pm |
  4. Jimmy in San Diego

    Bad idea! Wasting yet more tax payer dollars and they should have made it good only on an AMERICAN car.

    July 28, 2009 at 1:20 pm |
  5. Jenna

    Is cash for clunkers a good idea?

    It's a win win.

    We get the air poluting, gas guzzeling, rust buckets off our streets..


    The owner gets a new cost effective, less poluting, fuel effective car/truck to drive

    While the auto dealerships reduce inventories so that the factories can start building more..


    July 28, 2009 at 1:32 pm |
  6. BigJoeRice Eden Prairie MN

    With car company's throwing everything including the kitchen sink at consumers to get them to buy cars this year, you'd think those that can afford a new car will already have bought one; those that haven't either can't afford a new car payment, or are unwilling to risk a new car payment – regardless of the government cash back incentive.

    July 28, 2009 at 1:41 pm |
  7. Tony from Torrington

    There wouldn't be so many clunkers if Detroit made cars like Nissan and Toyota without the unions to add thousands to the cost. The cars that are clunkers are Union Made. How nice for them.

    July 28, 2009 at 1:46 pm |
  8. Barbara in NC

    Not for me – maybe for others.

    I have a 2007 Camry Hybrid that averages a little over 40 mpg on the highway and a little under 40 mpg in town. Can't complain.

    Lucky? No. Smart? Yes. Also, my foot isn't in the carburator all the time (or whatever that "thing-a-m-jig" is these days).

    July 28, 2009 at 1:47 pm |
  9. Tina Texas

    Yes cause it gets the old cars that take forever to fill up and then when they take off it spews smoke because it needs a tune up and people don't treat their cars that good but just keep driving them till a good deal rolls down the pike.

    July 28, 2009 at 1:56 pm |
  10. Allan Hanson Placerville,Ca

    NO. Almost all the cars that qualify are worth more than $4500.
    Very few people with these cars cannot afford a new car or they would have bought one, It's a joke most of the new cars would be built outside the USA, not helping our unemployment problem.

    July 28, 2009 at 1:58 pm |
  11. Joe CE

    Yes if they get rid of them.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:02 pm |
  12. Greg, Ontario

    Sure why not? It gets the gas guzzling clunkers off the road and gives people a chance to get gas guzzling new cars and save the jobs at the car plants. Nothing is really accomplished it's just the same old, same old as far as poisoning the planet goes.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:04 pm |
  13. Melissa

    Its only a start. Its time America cleaned up its act, this program is just the first step.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:10 pm |
  14. Dave, Brooklyn, NY

    It is just another attempt to legislate with the dollar. I like my “clunker.” I bought it because I never want to buy another car again.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:11 pm |
  15. Tom from Philly

    Yes. and it should be escalated until everyone is driving that ford that gets 41mpg

    July 28, 2009 at 2:11 pm |
  16. Larry

    I think it's a great idea to get a lot of low mpg, high polluting cars off the road.

    With the economy in the state it's in I'm not sure how big a program it will be. Most people aren't making big ticket item buys like cars now

    Cincinnati, OH

    July 28, 2009 at 2:12 pm |
  17. Ron Temecula

    Hi Jack:

    It's another way of bailing out the auto industry. A waste of good tax payer dollars.

    Ron Southern, Ca

    July 28, 2009 at 2:12 pm |
  18. Paul Austin, Texas

    Why not I do not have one or at least one that qualifies. But it at least gives some of us a small bailout. If it works it may even clean up our air some.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:16 pm |
  19. Max Fairview, Texas

    No, I don't think it is. The only requirement is that the vehicle that is purchased gets 4 miles more per gallon. It may spur auto sales to some degree but they probably won't be American made cars that are purchased because they don't get as good a mileage as the foreign made cars. One more thing is that in this economy why is the government enticing people to take on more debt when they should be saving instead of spending? Remember the economy stupid!!

    July 28, 2009 at 2:16 pm |
  20. Billy in Las Vegas

    YES for two reasons, Jack.

    first it will help jump start auto sales which is a major part of the economy and second it will get old "gas guzzlers" off the road which can help energy conservation.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:21 pm |
  21. Larry from Georgetown, Texas

    No it isn't. We need to create new jobs and new businesses with our tax dollars.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:29 pm |
  22. Terry in Virginia

    That depends upon whether I need a new car or not. Why should I trade in a lien-free car for one that gets a couple of miles more per gallon, if that, and, after the cash part of the government deal, owe thousands of dollars, plus interest, to a bank that has helped put our country into a deep recession? No, thanks. My 20+ year old car is doing just fine and gets 22 miles per gallon, in town. Let the government keep its money. I'm sure Wall Street will need to borrow it for Christmas bonuses for their executives.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:29 pm |
  23. Kerry Diehl

    I have faith it will indeed prompt some to purchase new vehicles. Will the sales numbers be enough to stimulate or help re-start our economy? ....Maybe!! At the worst, it may not hurt other than what it costs us taxpayers to fund the program.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:31 pm |
  24. Russ in PA

    No, why should I be paying for someone else to buy a car? Huh?

    July 28, 2009 at 2:32 pm |
  25. Michael, Alexandria, VA

    It seems to be good for the car companies. Now that we own them, what's good for GM (and Chrysler) really is good for the country.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:32 pm |
  26. Greg Mechanicsburg, PA

    The idea is well intentioned, but it will be abused in practice. I quit selling cars a few years back because the dealer loudly praised a salesman for shorting a customer out of two grand for his trade-in. This $45k incentive will most assuredly be used to do the same.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:40 pm |
  27. brian in jacksonville

    Bad idea. It just subsidizes buying a new car for people who'd have to do it anyway, and the increased mileage required is negligible. I heard someone say you could turn in an old Hummer H2 and get a Hummer H3, because it gets 2 more mpg. And the government would pay $4500 for you to do it. It might make sense if the rules were stricter. You'd turn in a car more than 10 years old, but you'd have to buy a car less than 4 years old, and which got at least 10 mpg better highway miles than the old car.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:40 pm |
  28. Greg in Cabot Arkansas

    No, if you are dirving a clunker, it's because you can't afford to buy a new car and getting a few thousand taxpayer dollars to trade up is only going to help those that could afford a new car in the first place.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:43 pm |
  29. chris

    this should of been done first before the bailout's of gm and chrysler except one change give everyone 15,000 legal american driver that makes under 50,000 to put towards a new car/truck that would helped the auto and american economy

    July 28, 2009 at 2:45 pm |
  30. Bill, Quarryville, Pennsylvania

    It's a good idea if you are a car dealer. It's a bad idea if you're a taxpayer. Whoever can up with this idea ought to come up with one more and then resign.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:46 pm |
  31. Don (Ottawa)

    Yes Jack. It's the neatest program I've seen yet for getting gas guzzling junks off the road.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:46 pm |
  32. Karen, Idaho Falls, Idaho

    HI Jack,

    It really depends on what is considered a "clunker". Apparently only huge trucks, SUV's, and Hummers that get lousy miliage qualify. I have a 1994 Pontiac that gets 25-30 mpg. I really would like to get a new car with the clunker plan, but my car does not qualify as a clunker. Age should also be a consideration. A lot of people with old cars would jump at the chance to buy a new one.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:47 pm |
  33. Jeffrey from LA, California

    As I was watching Secretary of Transportation Ray Lahood talking about it yesterday on CNN, it really sounded like a good idea. It seems like it would be a program that could benefit many Americans and help them get some more money in their pockets and more fuel efficient cars. 250,000 cars for $1 billion of tax payer money seems preety reasonable to me!

    July 28, 2009 at 2:54 pm |
  34. JIM S

    I don't think it will help. It would be feasible if the government would purchase clunkers to get them off the road. There were some states that had some type of this program. They discontinued it because they could no longer fund it.

    July 28, 2009 at 2:56 pm |
  35. cy gardner

    I thought it was, until I found that my car is not wasteful enough to qualify. I have a nine year old Saturn with 90K miles on it. Because I was responsible enough to drive a car that gets good mileage, I can't get a voucher to help me buy a car that gets better mileage. The selfish oafs that drive gas guzzling, road hogging SUVs can get $3500 by trading up from a vehicle that gets 12mpg to one that gets 14 mpg. This is America: If you do things right, you get screwed. If you are a selfish idiot, you get rewarded. Just like the bailout. I am disgusted. cy arlington, va

    July 28, 2009 at 3:00 pm |
  36. Mike Clancy

    Disappointed as I am that my 97 Wrangler isn't on the list (even though a 98 is), I think it's an excellent program that goes right to the need. For once, the people most likely to benefit are the working poor and lower middle class while the economic stimulus generated helps to preserve the jobs of the very same people. THESE are the people this country needs to help first, they are working to build a better life – not riding along on short term gains or looking for a handout.

    July 28, 2009 at 3:01 pm |
  37. Mitchell Hirsch, CT

    Yes, but it would be better if more vehicles qualified for the trade-in. My 1994 (no typo) Toyota Corolla wagon has 166,000 miles on it, but because it gets more than 18mpg it doesn't qualify. A neighbor's Hummer does, though. Great.

    July 28, 2009 at 3:04 pm |
  38. Arlene

    Yes. If it helps get the economy moving again and get non- fuel efficient cars off the road, good.

    Arlene in Atlanta.

    July 28, 2009 at 3:08 pm |
  39. Alice NEWYORK

    You can't please everybody all the time but you can please some people some of the time. If you've ever try to organize something you will always have those who are not satisfied. I say go for it why not!

    July 28, 2009 at 3:09 pm |
  40. John Swartz Creek mi.

    Jack this would be a great idea if my car qualified but it does not so it's a bad idea.

    July 28, 2009 at 3:10 pm |
  41. Sally in Phoenix, Ariz.

    If it helps people out of older gas guzzlers and gets them into more fuel efficient cars, then it's a great idea. I'm sure car dealers are happy for the business. But, people should be aware that these older cars will still be on the road – they'll be resold, most likely to low income people who will still struggle with high gas prices. In the end, I don't think this bill will do much for the climate, but it will stimulate car sales.

    July 28, 2009 at 3:12 pm |
  42. shawn in,glendale,az

    Yes jack it is. If it stirs up the economy giving money to people that must be used in a certain way (for a new auto) then it is a winner. the people win,the local auto dealer wins, and the auto manufacturer wins.
    This approach should have been used with the bank bail-out money for those behind in their mortgage. Instead the money went right to the banks who decided just to keep it, while millions of Americans continue to loose their homes. Nobody won there but the banks.

    July 28, 2009 at 3:12 pm |
  43. Terry in Illinois

    American taxpayer money should only be used for American car companies, not foreign !!!

    July 28, 2009 at 5:08 pm |
  44. Ricardo Rodriguez

    Cash for clunkers is a good idea for the moment until someone figures out a loop hole, and exploits it!


    July 28, 2009 at 5:08 pm |
  45. Kevin in Dallas, TX

    Auto dealers are about to have a sale to get rid of the 09 models to make room for the 2010 models. Add the $4,500 trade in and you're looking at $5,000 out of pocket for a new car. If you can't afford $5,000 over five years, then maybe you should consider turning that part time minimum wage job into a full time minimum wage job.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:09 pm |
  46. deon

    Its one of the only good things that's seem to be working at the moment......just sad it don't help everyone........

    July 28, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  47. Flyingwolf, Manchester NH

    I don't know, I have a 2000 Pontiac Gran Prix that gets 30 mpg. I would like to get a Prius or an Insight but I don't qualify because the State of New Hampshire doesn't require car owners to carry insurance on paid-for cars and a "clunker" has to get 18 mpg or less. The "cash for clunkers" needs to be revised so that it's applicable for all states.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  48. Bery K. L.A, CA

    No, it is a bad idea because my wife has already begun a campaign against my 1985 Corvette. Just the thought of a Corvette being crushed makes me sick, especially when the samll anount of scrap metal could be used to put cars built in other countries.on our roads.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  49. Thom Richer


    Have you ever heard of trading in your vehicle for another and getting money for it? It is called a "TRADE-IN" for god's sake! It has been in practice since the automobile has been around. It is a platent and demeaning slap in the face of all American tax payers intelligence. They, Congress, the White House, and Corporate America are admitting they believe we, the public, are idiots and will believe anthing they tell us or do. They have no respect for us and this phoney pretense of a rebate proves it absolutely. Time to replace any and all incumbents. Our government does not represent the American public and are laughing at us. By the way, Jack, you will never, and I mean NEVER, save money by trading in your car at a dealership no matter what numbers they come up with. Wake up, America. Why haven't you and CNN addressed these two facts: Trade-ins are a rip-off and Cash for Clunkers is baloney?

    Thom Richer
    Negaunee, MI

    July 28, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  50. Jeff in Minnesota

    It is if you are a government controlled automotive manufacturer. Essentially, any sales driven by this program to GM and Chrysler is money back into our pockets thanks to our generous bailout of those firms. While anyone purchasing certain models of Ford, Honda, Toyota, etc. will be supporting US Auto Workers, the rebates will not necessarily flow as easily back to the government treasury.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  51. Jan Illinois

    If it sells American cars, made by American workers, it's a good idea. Restrictions need to be made, until we are on our feet again, about buying foreign cars and major restrictions should be made on the size and fuel intake of our cars, these big gas guzzlers have hurt us in many ways. Why do we always think bigger is better. Clearly it's not true. We could go smaller and slower and safer, we could get use to it!

    July 28, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  52. MJ in Texas

    There is no cash – it's a coupon – what happened to "truth in advertising'? I should be able to get $4500 cash for my clunker not a coupon and another car payment. What a joke.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  53. bonny emekoba

    every body is talking about cost !!!cost!! pls ask them the cost of one human live that do not have insurance it looks like somebody is playing a game of leave and let die..

    July 28, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  54. sean

    No! This is not a good idea because u are taking American icons off the road and also camping and 4 wheeling off the road

    July 28, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  55. Jacque D (Oregon)

    It depends on the way that each dealer implements it. If the restrictions on models available is too rigid then it won't be of much value to many people. It would be great if the choices were more open.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  56. David A Whitaker

    I think a great ideal, it will help get peoples to buy cars. Also it will get lot of the unsafe cars of the street, Nobody never talk about this, they talk about truck being unsafe. It will provide a incentive into the market, that is exactly what is needed.


    July 28, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  57. Ryan, Rochester, New York

    Cash for clunkers is a great idea. Bush did nothing to help the environment, as he held stake in alot of oil companies. Obama is getting this country out of a dire future of global warming.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  58. Tom

    Why limit the age to 1984? The older the car the lower the gas mileage they get. Just look at the 70's mid/full size cars. We need to get them off the road even more than the 90's Corolla's & Saturns. Most of the old cars would not qualify because they get too high gas mileage (Saturns, Corolla, etc). Since the car has to be scrapped, it really only works for the absolute bottom end cars. A car that is worth $2000 – $3000 trade in would not be traded for the $3500 credit because there is no additional value for the car itself.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  59. gerald dow

    Did anyone think about the used car buyer or the dealer?Wheres our stimulas package?Dealers sell 30%less new cars than before therefor we take in 30 % less tradeins, now your helping people with good credit, good incomes, JOBS! get a pumped up tradein,then pull this good used car out of the mix and now we have a spent up demand for a good used car, and that buyer is on the low rung of the ladder of income and what did he get?higher prices lower supply and not one red cent I CALL FOUL!!!!!! yes jack I am a used car dealer.I dare to say no one will want to follow up on this HOT POTATO

    July 28, 2009 at 5:31 pm |

    Yes, it is a good idea. It is a start for cleaner air and less imported oil. We have to start somewhere. We need less whiners and more of them working together to get things done.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  61. Randy from Salt Lake City

    Laid off workers buying cars? Right.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  62. Bruce From Tucson, AZ

    It would be better for states to give the lowest priced license plates to those who drove the newest cars. It also would be a good idea for the insurance companies to give the lowest rates to them also. Finally if this happened the federal government could give the tax break to those who choose the cars with the best gas mileage by letting people take off the finance interest from their federal taxes like they do with your home. This will help the auto industry and spin off jobs that relate to it as well as the enviorment. We have basically the reverse system today in place and its not working very well.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  63. Jane - WI

    Absolutely not....Why should I be forking over my taxpayer money to help someone else buy a new car? A lot of these cars being turned over probably have a lot of life left in them. If they will be re=sold, what are we gaining? If they are scrapped, that seems like quite an environmental mess as well as a waste of a still usable product. Bad idea...

    July 28, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  64. C.K.

    Jack, it's a great idea. People are too dependent on their cars, and have forgetten about good old-fashioned walking, even bike-riding. I don't have a car, and haven't for about 5 years. I walk 15 minutes in the morning to get to my bus stop, then ride the bus into work everyday. Same for the mall, grocery store, etc. Using busses and trains has saved me a lot of money, and I've helped our enviornment and improved my health by walking more. Getting rid of the old clunkers makes sense for the future. Economic status can't always play a role in these types of issues, because we'll always have poor people – I'm one of them and I'm fine. We need to make the effort now to go green for the sake of the future of this planet.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:39 pm |
  65. David P. Vernon

    Tucson, AZ – Yes. It will promote car sales at least a little, reduce pollution a lot, and decrease dependence upon imported petroleum too.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:39 pm |
  66. joe stlouis mo

    It is a great idea. When will our society come to realize the reality of our actions. When will Republicans and Democrats look for solutions that help our country as much as their campaigns and their partisan party rules.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:41 pm |
  67. Joseph C

    I think it is a great idea to stimulate sales in the auto industry but i believe it should only be available for American car companies. Why should would be stimulating foreign car companies when we obviously have a economic crisis here. We should be stimulating AMERICAN companies so that we can give people jobs here and not overseas which got us into this big mess in the first place.

    July 28, 2009 at 5:42 pm |
  68. Rick in Massachusetts

    I think this is the blog for Cash for Clunkers, right?

    Cash for Clunkers has worked well for many years in Europe. As usual, Europe is ahead of us Americans in many ways. When will we start to learn from them instead of listening to the idiotic naysayers that plague the scene here?

    July 28, 2009 at 5:44 pm |
  69. George

    No, this will last about a month to many people don't qualifie for the
    for the rebate.I My car is 13 years old 1996 Elantra the dealership
    apprise it at $1000.00 that's sounds like a CHUNKER to me. They say sorry you're not qualfied,. Seem 7 other people walk out. Call it what it is
    Cash for Guzzlers

    July 28, 2009 at 5:53 pm |
  70. Doug Kolbo

    It 's a great way to get these oil burners off the streets, replacing not only a car with poor mileage by today's standards, but also getting a car that is probably much safer. A buyer now could get one of the Korean cars for under $8,000 if they are a good negotiator.

    Doug in Dallas

    July 28, 2009 at 5:57 pm |
  71. Lucy

    I don't know if it's necessarily a GOOD idea; but I can't call it a bad one either.
    SF, CA

    July 28, 2009 at 6:03 pm |
  72. Rose

    Cash for Clunkers? If you define clunkers as our electorate than bring on the cash. I can think of at least 400 of 'em!

    July 28, 2009 at 6:05 pm |
  73. lorraine ferguson/Danville, VA

    This sounds like another step to getting people further in debt and well as increase Federal spending; thereby bringing us all grief. For heaven sake, please leave some responsibility to the individual. Some people like their clonkers. Also, what do we do with all the junk cars? Seems to be a problem already. Too much government intervention already. Thanks

    July 28, 2009 at 6:05 pm |
  74. Jim, Honolulu

    It seems that all those opposed to this worthy program are those who have made huge sums of money supporting the old polluting, anti-ecological, anti-consumer policies. If the old don't work, try somethin' new, like this new program that will stimulate the economy and pump funds into the system. Let's go for it.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:07 pm |
  75. LL Denney

    Let's see.... Cash to get rid of BIG SUV's!
    Didn't Bush PAY taxpayer money for a BUNCH of those?

    Cash for clunkers is a good idea. Low-mid-income people will take advantage of it and the MORONS don"t care what gas costs.

    Clean air will increase overall health and lessen allergies/asthma...and therefore CUT healthcare costs! Stimulating the economy!

    July 28, 2009 at 6:10 pm |
  76. Lucy

    Also depends on who you're talking to, obviously, to call this a good idea or not. To the environmentalist, yes. To a car enthusiast and people who love their old engines, not so much. To me, I could care less.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  77. Ken in NC

    It’s not a bad idea Jack. The problem is that you could be trading your clunker for a new clunker when you look at the quality of many vehicles on sale today.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:11 pm |
  78. Lee in MN

    I think it is. I hope it is not going for foreign rice bangers. Buy from American Corporations that PAY American taxes.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  79. Alex S.

    It won't terribly raise the prices for used parts. Under the plan, dealers only have to destroy the engine of the trade-in, allowing them to keep and sell the other parts of the vehicle.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  80. jean jason

    It is indeed an astronomical idea specially for those just like me who cant afford to try to purchase a new car. I have dreams of driving a new car now Jack.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  81. Rock

    A good idea?... from congress? ... I must have missed part of the question...

    Port Orange, FL

    July 28, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  82. Han G Thesobs in Ca

    Hey! Since "Corn Whiskey" (Ethanol) lowered my mileage by 1 1/2 mpg, can MY car now get that deal? I used to get 19.9, now only about 18.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  83. Jeff

    No, this bill is NOT a good idea. And neither is any scheme Congress cooks up to try to manipulate the markets. Congress isn't smart enough to understand what makes one market move versus any other. Another billion dollar boondoggle.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:12 pm |
  84. Angela Washington

    It is a great idea! My old clunker was eating up all my cash... so cash for the clinker sound like a win win situation...

    July 28, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  85. dw

    Great program. Worked well for Germany. The critics: clink, clank, clunk.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  86. Ryan, Richmond VA


    My thoughts on this Cash for Clunkers thing being a good idea come in the form of a question to you and your viewers:

    Have ANY of the ideas that have come out of D.C. regarding the auto industry been really good lately?

    July 28, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  87. j/NJ

    Is cash for clunkers a good idea?

    Like many cash up front offers, the clunker exchange sounds good, however, on closer inspection, if the government is involved how can it possibly "be" good?...

    July 28, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  88. bill devine

    yeah, its agood idea for ppl selling new cars. i rember being a college kid trying to kkep a car running. Junkyards were like supermarkets!

    July 28, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  89. Charles

    I think Cash For Clunkers is a great program, It will hopefully get more of those vehicles off the road that have an entourage of black or blue smoke, thus resulting in cleaner air for everyone.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  90. nigel

    yes its wonderful idea to progress into the future we must get the past out of the way ,like old cars ,etc.
    but as for cash for clunkers i think cash for guns is more of a concern.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:13 pm |
  91. Martell

    CAsh for Clunkers gets worse and worse the more I hear about it. First with the EPA magically deciding in the middle of the night that cars previously registering the requisite 18 miles per gallon now suddenly get 19 thus disqualifying them from the program, now the fact that the trade in vehicle must be destroyed! Are you kidding. This will destroy the small used car dealers who rely on selling cars that just got traded to stay afloat. This seems like yet another assault on small business in favor of the corporations which the government is now so invested in. If this isnt more evidence that Obama and Company are trying to queitly take over the private sector I dont know what is. Someone needs to stop this insanity.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  92. Sherwin

    CARS is a very good idea AS LONG AS it only applies to American cars; After all, why should we use TAX PAYERS' money to create more demands for foreign cars... thereby stimulating THEIR economy.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  93. Charles Willliams

    I am 63 years old and I didn't think I could ever justify buying a new car. This program convinced me otherwise. I got rid of a gas guzzler and have a new vehicle which is much safer and more efficient.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  94. Amy Guerrero, Sharon, MA

    I would like to participate in the "cash for clunkers" program, but wouldn't like to see my 12-year-old Jeep destroyed. It works perfectly.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  95. Ashekumar

    The Cash for Clunkers is too restrictive, plus they are revising the MPG upwards to disqualify many cars. The requirements should be simple such as 18 MPG or less OR more than 10 years old

    July 28, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  96. Kevin Mitnick

    How about trading in our useless old politicians for cash to bolster the economy?

    July 28, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  97. bob

    it may be a good idea as far as wash. go's.the dealers still are not making any deals.in phoenix the dealers won't go out of there way to sell anything.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  98. Brian Michaels

    Interestingly I was just reading an article about cash for clunkers in Cairo. Not sure what country your piece focused on but I can tell you from first hand experience there is no more horrifying experience than being trapped in a 20 year old Egyptian Cab spewing diesel not just out of the car but actually into the car. Im an experienced traveller and I can tell you those cars are an environmental disaster.

    Removing these diesel belching death traps not only stimulates the economy but will go a long way to start to clean the air of some of the worlds most polluted cities. No brainer.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:14 pm |
  99. Lynn

    Is this a bad joke? Our government doesn't have the money to fund anything unless we borrow from China. Government can't keep track of the TARP money or the whereabouts of aliens whose visas have expired. Tell me how on earth are they going to keep track of the clunkers that are traded in and then make sure fuel efficient cars are purchased in their stead?

    July 28, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  100. Rolando DePuy

    For those with a Clunker... on the other hand perhaps it will help motivate the economy somehow... If we measure all that the President does as a Negative, we are really in bad shape. In our country we do not lack of bad opinions...

    July 28, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  101. Jean Chaffee

    People need an incentive to get rid of the smog spewing gas guzzlers and this is working. Driving behind one of those spewers makes me sick and I applaud this bill.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  102. Keith Jones

    Cash for old and inefficient cars that do nothing but spew noxious fumes into the air is a great idea. Maybe the stimulus package could be expanded to include old and inefficient politicians who also spew nothing but noxious fumes.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:15 pm |

    I have been in the car business for 30 years and it is a great idea. The clunkers we are seeing belong in a crusher and after November, there will still be plenty of older cars available in the market. 250,000 cars is peanuts in the American market.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  104. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    Hi Jack,

    yes it is a good idea in order to get rid of all the old cars! But in any new programme, there is a need for a transition period and a level of flexbility required which would mean we may ask ourselves : why not create a recycle program for old parts in order to keep people working and allow a segment of the population with lower income to still be able to afford the replacement of parts for their car!

    July 28, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  105. Dawn

    Yes. Anything that helps the environment is a good idea.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:15 pm |
  106. Tad Dunavan

    It certainly is a great idea! I currently own a 98 Cadillac Catera that needs a lot of work done on it, that will cost me more than what the car is worth. With this Cash for Clunkers program I will be able to get a brand new card for around $14,000 that I can easily afford on my fixed income. The Government needs to create more programs like this to help out low income people, such as myself.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  107. Bob, Arlington, VA.

    Hi Jack – cash for clunkers? Dumb idea!! Simple more expedient approach are two things which we simply cannot seem to move into the political agenda, i.e. an escalating gas tax and a carbon tax. Other developed economies around the world have done so and do not (now) face this absurb question about "clunkers." Only in America does our sense of entitlement (regarding clunkers, plastic bags...and you name it) always seem to trump the logical.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  108. William Crimmins

    I think this is a great program, It has benefits for the environment, the economy, and consumers. However if everyone is not on board with the plan (i.e. used parts industry) there could be problems with its view in the public eye. I would hate to see another flounder they the Kyoto protocol.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  109. John S.

    Let's not get ahead of ourselves, this is not going to help cure all ills, but it's a good program to help our economy and the environment.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:16 pm |
  110. George

    Cash for Clunkers is a good idea in a socialist nation, not in the United States! The bailed out auto companies are currently matching the forty-five hundred dollars as an incentive to buy vehicles from them. Well what about the poor guys at Ford who did not get bailed out but rather engaged in better business practices? They can't afford the same promotion. This picking of winners and losers is unAmerican. Now we are being told we can all keep our healthcare if we like it, but how will companies which have to make money compete with a government who can continue to lose it, and just hike our taxes to cover it. What ever happened to free market capitalism? If you want to lower healthcare costs, try tort reform, or make health benefits paid for tax deductible as an incentive for people to get care. Cash for clunkers, just like socialized medicine, just like Cap 'n Trade are all just programs to increase the government's control of our daily lives. Let people buy the cars they want, and buy the healthcare they want!

    July 28, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  111. Charles R

    It is if we have the money. We don't plain and simple.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  112. clayton asher

    same laws are in germany since early this year to kept the automobile industry from collapsing. seems to work!

    July 28, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  113. Patrick D.

    Yes, the cash for clunker program is a good idea. At least we know where this tax money is going, instead of going to elite CEO's to pay for another lavish vacation, or multi-million dollar house. Older cars cause a large amount of C02 pollution, so by taking them off the road, we will reduce CO2 emissions, while helping the struggling auto company. As a college student I have been in the market for a new, fuel efficient car so this could provide some needed cash.
    Patrick D.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  114. will hodge

    Whatever positive it generates will be negated in the used car
    and parts industry.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  115. Martin Williams

    No, Cash for Clunkers is NOT a good program. Trade in a clunker for a vehicle getting only 2 more mpg, and get $3,500? Not good enough. I own three vehicles, oldest 14 years, and all have 4-cylinder engines. Where is my benefit for purchasing fuel efficient vehicles? I don't like my tax money going to those who chose to buy gas guzzler vehicles.

    Martin Williams
    Decatur, Illinois

    July 28, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  116. John

    No...It's just another wasteful spending of taxpayer money. Why would or should I trade in a perfectly good, paid off car so that I can take on car payments? We can't have everything and need to choose between paying for stimulous, heaalth care reform etc etc etc. When will the government learn it should not encourage people to take on debt? Oh, that's right, they can't balance a budget either.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  117. Jacob S. from Racine, WI

    It is a great idea. It helps boost the economy and allows recycling. A 2 for 1 Deal.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  118. Karl from SF, CA

    It is a great idea and the only way we will ever get these Junkers off the road. Most are dirty polluters or gas guzzlers or both and will never go away until there is a concerted effort to do it. There are plenty of used efficient cars for those who can’t afford a new one and the savings on gas alone will pay for them. No one has to get rid of their clunker if they can afford to keep it. A break on registration fees for efficient vehicles would help, too. Hint, hint.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  119. louis gander

    Yes – if you want to pollute the air and waste energy grinding up and then melting down all these cars back into usable steel. Oh, AND quickening the bankrupcy of America.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  120. Jeff

    Cash for Clunkers benefits the government because it makes them look like they are doing something, it benefits the auto makers and the dealers by boosting their sales (which you could argue will allow some people to keep their jobs, but it won't create any jobs), and it will benefit people who were already planning on purchasing a new vehicle by subsidising their purchase thanks to the taxpayers.

    However, it will not benefit the people who need it the most, the people who need a new car, but can't afford a new car even with a $4500 dollar kick back.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  121. Bobby

    i think cash for clunkers is a terrible idea, it took me about a year and half to save up for my "gas-guzzler" and 4500 bucks isn't enough to replace my car for a new one. this plan needs more "planning" !

    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  122. Phil Fusilier

    Jack, this is another govt. Boondoggle. The people who need the rebates can't afford to make the payments on a new car. If they could, they'd have already traded for one.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  123. Betty, San Diego, Ca.

    Cash for clunkers is an excellent idea. However, the qualifying criteria should be expanded. The qualifying criteria should include switching from premium to regular gasoline or diesel to regular gasoline. The criteria should also include a tax credit for switching from a vehicle to a bicycle or public transportation.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  124. Joe /from Missouri

    It's intended incentive is to get the gas hogs off the road but everyone interested wants to trade in the family commute vehicle for their share of the tax return pie. Vehicles must get less than nineteen miles per gallon which pretty much describes the large SUV's. The gas hogs.
    People wanting to trade up for a more efficient vehicle and boost auto sales are just stuck because of the mileage limits. If the limits were set at twenty-five mpg or less then the plan would work.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  125. Bill

    It is another stupid idea by the green nazi's and the liberal politicians that support them. They have no idea how the used car market even works. Most of the vehicles they want to see taken off the road are worth more than the $4500 to begin with. I could afford to trade in my 2003 Chevy Tahoe (which is worth more than $10K) for a new Hybrid Tahoe but why should I? The 2003 is paid for. I do not have a $400 per month car payment. Even at $4.25 per gallon I can buy a lot of gas with $400 and if I choose to I can lower the amount spent per month by changing my driving habits.

    One thing about it. It will be one government program that doesn't overrun its budget.


    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  126. T Brauning

    Here's why it's such a bad idea. I own three independent repair shops in Virginia. In my world, I am now competing with Obama Motors, selling new cars all day long with government support, my customers who could be fixing their cars are now saying they won't fix it, they will go get the clunker money, let's add to the pile that Obama wants to fine me for not providing health care when time after time I have made the attempt to offer it and my employees cannot afford their premiums and therefore I don't get enough participation so that idea dies. How about calling the cash for clunkers idea what it is, a way to shore up the dealers and put the independent auto repair industry out of business. Go ahead buy a clunker with your clunker money, who's going to be left to fix your clunker? The dealer, guess what happens then, with the dealer left unchecked, there is no end in site to what they will charge for their services. We the independent repair industry keep the dealers in check. The independent repair business is hurting right now, where's my bailout?

    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  127. Max Bacon

    Cash-for clunkers is just another government financed program that benefits only a small portion of the economy and population. That is not meant to be be the function of the government or their programs.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  128. sharon sands

    On the face of it, the "clunkers" program sounds great (and may be for lots of dealers and customers). I do worry that this is another "rushed through" Washington program that hasn't been thoroughly thought through. What IS going to happen to those clunkers, and has there been time to get the proper safeguards in place so that they will not end up on the street?

    Hot Springs Village, AR

    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  129. Julie Austin, TX

    As my brother who runs a car dealership pointed out to me, the plan will not help anyone. Most people who have a "crushable" car do not have the money to buy a new car and are better off buying a used car (which will not allow them to qualify for the $4500). Those who can afford a new car are probably not driving a car that should be crushed and the dealership is not allowed to resale the trade in. As usual, it is a government plan that helps no one but makes politicians feel good about themselves.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:18 pm |
  130. Anders

    France already has this program up and running for Renault and Peujot...Twingo, anyone? Maybe FIAT can jumpstart our economy.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  131. Michael De Lisle

    The only way the cash 4 clunkers idea will work is if it becomes profitable. So what we have to do is create a $4,000.00 auto that is environmentally friendly. Then offer the government' rebate. Then take the old clunker and recycle it for profit. But that just seems to simple.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  132. bart


    I think that cash for clunkers is a great idea. My college age son is going to have the opportunity to purchase a new car for under $10,000.00 and old red ( 1994 ford pickup will be retired) the dealers will get a nice shot in the arm and for Michigan it may be the opportunity for us to climb out of the hole we are in. To many times government programs never seem to reach the mainstream- I feel in this case it has.


    Bay City, Michigan

    July 28, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  133. Bill Hoffman

    Yes, it stimulates new car buying, creating jobs, and it gets old guzzlers off the streets. Seems like it would be a lot better idea if it was restricted to purchasing American made cars, thereby stimulating even more jobs.

    Reno, NV

    July 28, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  134. Chris

    We just bought a new car. While at the dealership we overheard couples trying to get the cash for their Saturn under this program. The Saturn had over 100k miles but the car probably got over 25 or 30 mpg. The people were obviously either playing stupid or misinformed (even though the MPG qualification information is posted everywhere at that dealership). It’s a good program but you see what the dealers deal with, and what the people are trying to do. The couple stormed off all upset after they were told over and over that their car does not qualify.

    Buffalo NY

    July 28, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  135. Christian

    A win-win yeah right my car isn't worth what I owe! Plus I can't get approved I lost all 5 of my houses! What a waste! Get the credit market lose maybe then America will be better off trying to get a loan!

    July 28, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  136. Heide

    I hate being stuck driving behind one of those old, out of repair cars that is spewing smog. It is selfish to subject others to so much pollution because you want to drive a car rather than take public transit. It is easier to pee in the pool than get out and use the restroom. If you think causing hardships for a few that will benefit millions of people is wrong then perhaps you are that guy who can't bother to get out of the pool.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  137. Luke W.

    In my opinion, cash for clunkers is a horrible idea. Perhaps i'm biased, but i believe cash for clunkers is worse for the enviroment than standard vehicle recycling. Wouldn't it make more sense to reuse car parts than to destroy them?

    Lets just say its no coincidence the Government is willing to give you $4500 of my tax dollars if you are willing to buy a new car from the now mostly government owned automakers.

    Sounds like more free money from the democrats, but we all know nothing in life is free.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:20 pm |
  138. Nicholas

    Yes, we need to get more hybrid cars on the road now. Climate change is happening every day and we need to take more small steps like this to reduce our carbon footprint. Car companies need a hand, its small things like this that are going to bring our economy out of the recession.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:20 pm |
  139. Roni

    You'd think so, Jack, but it would have made more sense for me if it had included late model used cars with good gas mileage. I'm on a fixed income, and driving a 14 year old van. It gets 13 miles to the gallon... almost anything out there would be better, but I guess my clunker wil just have to keep clunking it down the road...

    July 28, 2009 at 6:20 pm |
  140. Antoni Scott

    Although I took advantage of the "Cash for Clunkers" program, and traded in my gas guzzling Jeep, ( I now own a fuel efficient, 41 mpg Toyota Yaris, 4-door Sedan) ,as far as I am concerned the program is a joke. You can trade in one gas guzzler for another ( i.e a Jeep that gets 18 mpg for a pimped out truck that gets the same or less). Ridiculous!! The program should be ONLY for cars that get better than 35 mpg. That way we can really reduce our dependence on foreign oil, not just stimulate new cars sales.

    Antoni Scott . Pennsylvania.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:20 pm |
  141. Tad Dunavan Boise, ID

    No one's ever offered me $9,000 "Trade In" for my car. I'd be lucky if I could get the Blue Book Value. This is a great idea! Stop being so negative about it.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  142. Kyle P

    No its not a good idea because some dealers are using the credit for themselves, by subtracting it from the price of the car by making it look discounted then adding it back in with a lot of hidden charges, thats what happened to me. I wanted to use my trade credit as a downpayment but they said it had already been used. So some car dealers are doing like the banks, by being greedy.

    Cafferty for president 2012

    July 28, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  143. Beth (pls don't use last name! on air ) Strickler

    eems to me that the spare parts issue is easily solved. Is there some reason that a lot of the parts cannot be pulled from the vehicles prior to crushing them. Seems to me that that would solve the spare parts issue which I understand hurts the poor because they would no longer be able to make repairs with cheaper used parts). While I think it wasn’t wise to change the official mileage at the last minute and it might have been a good idea to have a step down program ($x for 15mpg -18 and $y for <15 for ex), I don’t have much of a problem with only a few people qualifying. What is the down side of fewer people getting the money?? – costs less taxpayer money – and some might head to a dealership and find out they don’t qualify, but learn about the deals that are now available. Wow, we really to complain about this!!

    Beth S, Atlanta

    July 28, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  144. Mandy

    Hi Jack ~

    Yes it is a great idea! Maybe there are some negative concerns, but lets bite the bullet already. True change is needed period! Lets get over ourselves and move on with it!

    peace, Mandy

    July 28, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  145. Marie

    Hmm, trade in my paid off car for a car payment on a car that really does not get very good gas mileage for funds I really do not see. Seems like another program for those that can already afford a car payment and now there are given a break on taxes.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:22 pm |
  146. Dale

    Is cash for clunkers a good idea?

    That depends on the purpose of the program. If it's really intended to be more of an auto industry/economic stimulus - maybe.

    But if the intent is to conserve resources–to save oil and gas, nope, not a good idea at all. It takes as much oil, gas and water to manufacture the vehicle as it will use during its entire lifetime.

    From a fuel conservation standpoint it makes far more sense to tune up the clunker and drive it until it simply cannot be driven another inch.

    I'm all for fuel efficiency and fewer emissions, but I say let those who can afford to pay full price for a new hybrid lead the way to fuel efficiency and let taxpayers who need a break off the hook for even more government debt.


    July 28, 2009 at 6:22 pm |
  147. OJA

    Change comes at a price, and in this case I think the differential is worth it. The three plusses, getting higher gas mileage cars on the road, stimulating car purchasing helping the economy and giving people cash for cars they may have otherwise gotten little for, makes a lot of positive sense. The negatives, auto salvagers not being able to resell old parts doesn't sway me because these parts were designed as part of an old gas guzzler; the other that low income buyers might be left out doesn't hit me either as you just can't accomodate everyone. My car is four years old and gets over 18 mpg and I don't qualify for cash either – but that's OK because of the larger good this program does accomplish.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:22 pm |
  148. Howard Classen

    I just purchased a 2010 Ford Fusion Hybrid yesterday by placing my 1995 Ford Crown Victoria, police interceptor model (17mpg EPA combined), into the CARS program. My benefit was $4,500 off the MSRP of $30, 850 (including an options package) plus a $1,700 Federal Tax Credit for 2009, totally $6,200. That's for a purchase, financing for a 5 year lease.

    When Congress returns in September, I think constituents will help move this program to a second phase and up the mileage from 18 to ___.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  149. Ron Fullerton,california

    Well Jack, I guess it is great for working people who want to better themselves and the Environment .But as for the Unemployed like myself,I need my old Clunker to get me around to apply for Employment and by the way,It is still pretty good on gas too.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  150. Chris

    I drove home 3 hours ago in my brand new 2009 Honda Civic LX. Cost? After the goverments$4500 contribution, I paid $12,197 plus tax and tags. I don't see a downside. And the $4500 was about what I paid in federal taxes last year. Talk about having the federal government work for you!

    July 28, 2009 at 6:23 pm |
  151. Annie, Atlanta

    It’s a great idea if it helps to keep people in the auto industry working. I still don’t understand why we bailed out the banksters instead of big auto. There’s no chance of the auto industry sinking the world economy.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  152. Mariann Bader

    Anything that reduces foreign oil dependence and is beneficial to our environment is helpful.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  153. Chris

    Great! After Europe and Japan, the US joins the cash for clunkers program now... Just wait 'til the programs run out and the car makers whine again about having built too many cars. Why not just tax clunkers a lot more? Oh wait, that way we wouldn't create more debt...

    July 28, 2009 at 6:24 pm |
  154. Rick St Augustine Fla

    Its a Great Idea....Bout time we rid America of the Gas Guzzlers...Didn't Prez Carter try to increase CAFE Standards to 27 MPG by 1985????...Oh yea, Reagan threw that idea out along with the Solar Panels Carter put on top of the Whte House...Conservative????....I'm not Fooled

    July 28, 2009 at 6:25 pm |
  155. Jane Gayle

    My dad was a Ford dealer for years and he would have adamently disagreed with offered program. Many people love their "old cloggers" until they are no longer comfortable because of higher maintenance cost for a trade-in – NOT BECAUSE GOVERMENT MONEY WOULD SUBSIDIZE TRADE IN PROCESS. Fed taxes should stay out of the free enterprise system. Does not anyone understand federal intervention in this country?

    Jane Gayle

    July 28, 2009 at 6:25 pm |
  156. Michael Shannon

    Excellent idea. We have a near identical program called "Scrap-it" here in Canada. With it – my family was able to turn in our 10+ year old Jeep towards cash for a brand new, efficient Honda Civic. The aim of the program obviously is to reduce emissions which is great, but we also save on gas in the long-term on a profound level. The program allowed us – and I'm sure many others – to make this decision, and it proved to be a smart one. This program is stimulating auto sales and reducing emissions at the same time. Any criticisms of this program simply do not measure up – you're not going to get any good ideas like this one without any cons for sure, this is as good as it gets.

    Michael Shannon
    Vernon, British Columbia

    July 28, 2009 at 6:25 pm |
  157. Gitau

    Not a good idea. America's economy is mainly consumer/demand driven. If and when the economy improves, demand for gas guzzlers we are seeking to destroy will go up. Americans love their trucks and suvs. These vehicles are source of pride to many. Certainly if military-type tunkers were to be licensed, you will see them being driven on our roads.

    Fort Wayne, IN

    July 28, 2009 at 6:25 pm |
  158. Tom

    Cash for clunkers is another way to drive a wedge between the haves and have nots. Those of us that are unemployed cannot qualify for a new car loan and couldn't pay it if we did. We are busy trying to keep our old clunker running so we car look for work and this program just will drive up the price of the used parts we depend on. It seems the greatest benefits will go the the foriegn auto manufacturers and will not help the employment situation in the US much at all. And those who can least afford it will be stuck driving the cars that get the worst gas milage until they break down – Just once I would like to see something come out of Washington DC that actually helps those that are struggling to survive!

    July 28, 2009 at 6:25 pm |
  159. Jean Crosby

    You know I have a better idea why don't we just give 9000 dollars to people who want to buy cars. Instead of jump starting the industry by 35% it should jump start 70%. heck why stop there, why don't we just give away cars. Of course I am being sarcastic... this is a crap idea wrapped in a golden bag.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:26 pm |
  160. John Simmons

    Jack: Yes! The program will replace gas guzzlers with more fuel efficient cars. The complaint that recyclers will lose money is an argument for the program. The reclaimed lost parts would perpetuate gas guzzlers on the road by keeping cars that would use those parts (other gas guzzlers that were not turned in) on the road. Even if the parts were not destroyed, their existence at a presumably lower price would still serve to keep gas guzzlers that needed those parts on the road. John Simmons P.S. Thanks for the opportunity to respond.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  161. Mike from Denver

    Leave it to the government to trade one form of polution for another. If they are going to waste money, at least they could try recycling.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  162. Bob Jones

    I am wondering what the thinking is here. We make the large SUV type equipment that operates on the lowest octane fuel. Why would we want to take these off the road that serve large families safer and can handle the pulling equipment safer at a lower cost using regular fuel instead of requiring higher higher octaine fuel at a much higher cost. I have a Chev truck that gets 17 miles per gallon that costs less than a 25 miles per gallon requiring higher octaine.

    I love the sound of good news. When I was a kid I was told I could get a better deal on an American car over a Import because of the shipping? True or False?

    July 28, 2009 at 6:28 pm |
  163. Kent

    Would be a better idea if 18 mpg restriction was higher. My local dealer would have sold several more vehicles if this was not included as a qualifier

    July 28, 2009 at 6:29 pm |
  164. Calvin Larson


    Cash for clunkers is a mixed bag. Good for the environment, economy,and personnel finance.
    Bad for those with sensitive finances that may be helped by this program if there were not so many conditions. Some people that I personally know have two cars and when the economy took it's downturn they put one up on blocks (storage) and lapsed the insurance on this vehicle and had hoped to get a new, more efficient vehicle in light of this program only to be left out due to the insurance requirement of one year of continuous coverage.
    The government takes good programs, pollutes and dilutes them and then spends millions to make us believe it is a great deal, that the government inflicts on us.
    If only the government could use the KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid)principle, what a great country we would have.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:30 pm |
  165. Gary W. Ray 1st

    I think it is important to do what can be done to stimulate the economy, but I have a problem with the cash for clunkers:

    1) The cost passed on to low income citizens and future car repairs.

    2) What it will do to the middle-class car collecting citizens, who have worked hard, saved, spent long hard nights, to buy, and build a collector car, only to be forced out of a life long hobby, by higher and higher cost, and scarcity of collector car parts.

    3) The people that make after market parts for older cars, and speciality parts for Hot-Rod builders, all part of the American Dream, and part of our legacy.

    4) All of these things should be taken into consideration, before the final cost can be figured out.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:30 pm |
  166. Yiheyis

    Hello Jack, I love it, and plan to change my old Dodge with something affordable; I hope I am helping the economy in the process.


    Sent from my iPhone

    July 28, 2009 at 6:30 pm |
  167. Sean in Virginia

    Let's see; Finite natural resources – energy, metals – are consumed producing new vehicles. Further resources are consumed removing or destroying otherwise serviceable vehicles. Taxpayers get to subsidize these car purchases. Gullible consumers amass more debt and in exchange receive a slightly shinier paint job and an asset that will lose value faster than a credit default swap. "Is cash for clunkers a good idea?" Its a good idea if you're in the energy, mining, car sales, marketing, or finance business...

    July 28, 2009 at 6:31 pm |
  168. big d

    absolutely not. this will just help the new car dealers that have already received huge bail outs. lets bail out the small guys for once. AUSTIN TX

    July 28, 2009 at 6:33 pm |
  169. John

    Tuesday, July 28, 2009

    Topic: Cash for Clunker Tax Give Away
    No too Clunker tax credit give away. This is a political pay-off. A waste of a Billion dollars. What will happen next? When a buyer gets laid-off from their job? Will they be standing in line for a voucher to pay their car or truck payment. What will they have at the end of the day. When their car or truck is repossessed no car or truck because they traded it in. When their car or truck was already paid for in full.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:34 pm |
  170. jack hass

    no, its not a good idea .its just another scam. by obama. to give away our money to his friends. you want to get rid of old clunkers why not get rid of all the old politicians and there old stupid ideas.they are turning us into tax slaves .

    July 28, 2009 at 6:50 pm |
  171. Steve

    I had 94 Mazda 626 for 9 years now, the muffler and exhaust is almost beyond repair unless I want to pay more than the cars worth and there's other numerous problems. Point is time for a new car but I average 20 mpg so I don't qualify??? I can tell you with a bad muffler I definitly don't average 20 mpg and if i did I wouldnt want to scrape it. make decent $ but not enough for a brand new car and this would help, it seems as though this $ is gonna go towards alot of older truck and suv owners. This bailout is not for the majority of people who REALLY need it, and work by the way!

    July 28, 2009 at 6:51 pm |
  172. Denise

    It has turned out to be an excellent idea, Jack! People are buying cars! Those who own auto dealerships are HIRING people because of the uptake in the cash for clunkers. This program is working.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:52 pm |
  173. Brett

    Why are my tax payer dollars being used to help stupid people who bought the gas guzzlers in the first place I have a 2001 car that gets 23MPG average so I am not eligible for the rebate. I am poor and a $3500 rebate on a car would really help me out. I think the rebate for be for anyone who buys a new car that gets 5 MPG higher not just 18 and below. In my opinion 5MPG is 5MPG no matter which way you look at it. Why are the people who were being friendlier to the environment being penalized?

    July 28, 2009 at 6:52 pm |
  174. John

    Not impressed with the program. Where's the program for environmentally and economically conservative people who bought decent higher mileage vehicles all along? We get penalized for not driving something that gets less than 18 MPG. Why should my tax dollars subsidize people who chose to buy and drive expensive gas guzzlers?

    July 28, 2009 at 6:53 pm |
  175. Joe

    The cash for clunkers is certainly a good idea becaus it takes cars that pollute the air we all have to breathe and replaces them with new cars; but why not bring back the electric cars that were on the roads and streets of America and were ilegally recalled. But a few were missed and they are showing us that electric cars work.


    July 28, 2009 at 6:54 pm |
  176. Gary

    Bad, Bad. More Government give away and someone like "real taxpayers" have to pay for it.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:55 pm |
  177. Stephen Kelly

    My taxes already pay for enough programs for the poor – now I have to buy them a new car? Each passing day it gets harder for me to call myself a democrat.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:55 pm |
  178. Don

    I have a 1982 pickup that gets terrible mpg, but is still in reasonably good shape. It is tagged, insured, and frequently used. I would consider trading if it qualified. Unfortunately, it is too old. Maybe they need to check out the old cars being used in the "flyover" states. I see a lot of vehicles around here that are older than my pickup. The 25 year old limitation does not make much sense to me.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:56 pm |
  179. Jim L.

    Jack, This boils down to nothing more than a political payoff to the U.A.W. If the sales volume of Detroit's auto industry increases as a result of the "clunkers" program, the union workers that supported Obama can consider their alliegance to be "paid in full".

    July 28, 2009 at 6:57 pm |
  180. mike zibura

    cash for clunkers is a good idea. i work as a sales person at a chevrolet dealership . the problem so far is not the idea but the process of getting the registration of vehicles and our dealership. i do not know if the national highway traffic safety administration was prepared for the responce it has recieved or is up to the task. i also question if the billion dollars will be for vehicle vouchers or how much will go to administration of the program. the concept is great but i hold reseverations on the implementation till i see results and sometimes with goverment it takes a bit long.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:57 pm |
  181. Armindo Godinho

    OK.....but only to buy Made in USA cars. Cars of USA brands made in Mexico ,Chile, Brazil, etc should NOT qualify for this taxpayers supported trade in.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:57 pm |
  182. sandra

    Hello Jack, first would like yo say i think your a good guy.I think the cash for clunkers is a hoax i have a 1996 camry with about 170,000 miles on it but again because it gets decent gas milage we dont qualify for the stimulus and also feel that the taxpayers are the ones paying for this so the car companies like gm who the goverment owns part of get there money back.

    July 28, 2009 at 6:57 pm |