WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The U.S. Congress today ordered General Motors to begin producing "as quickly as feasible" a brand new model for its Cadillac line of passenger vehicles, the Albatross. The large, powerful, yet green, Albatross will be the first American-made automobile to come supplied with a driver and a full contingent of passengers.
"Redundant systems are the key to future of the American automobile which will be made, built, designed, engineered, created and assembled right here in the U.S. of A., the United States of America," said Sen. Dick Durbin, Senate majority whip.
"The Albatross will come with a government-supplied chauffeur and also a government-mandated designated driver and a government-employed backseat driver, in case the government-supplied chauffeur or designated-driver fails in some form or fashion to fulfill his or her navigational obligations," said Durbin.
The vehicle will be powered by a hybrid propulsion system of highly compressed thermally enhanced natural atmospheric gasses and combined with methane produced from bovine solid waste material. Outside consultants were at first skeptical of the practicality of the drive system until government engineers demonstrated for them a similar but more primitive system of hot air and gas that has been harnessed to heat the United States Capitol for several hundred years.
One minor problem with the Albatross yet to be resolved is tailpipe odor.
As a flex-fuel vehicle the Albatross can also run by burning straight cellulose in what GM engineer Duncan Klein calls reverse ATM mode.
The massive Albatross uses the principle of buoyancy using human biologic systems to heat the atmosphere within the inflated cabin of the vehicle. The same principle is employed to fill each of the Albatross' 100 naturally heated airbags.
Stylistically the Albatross has “aerodynamic lines reminiscent of the Von Hindenburg airship,” said Norma Slick of the NewWave AutoDesign Team. At present, the Albatross is scheduled to be available in a single tint which GM calls Greenback Green.
President Barack Obama announced he is leading the way by adopting the Albatross as the new presidential limousine. White House chief of staff Rahm Emmanuel said the first official use of the Albatross will be to ferry Obama to a speech to Congress tentatively entitled “Freeing Enterprise for the Twenty-First Century.”
In related news, the Department of Transportation announced today that in order to reduce costs to the government a $10,000 rebate will be given on all federal government purchases of any General Motors car. The Government Accounting Office said that they expect this purchase incentive will save the U.S. Treasury more than $250 billion over the next ten years as the rebates revert to the federal government on planned purchases of more than 25,000,000 cars.
NC goes on Easley Plan
RALEIGH -- North Carolina Senate Majority Leader Senator Tony Rand of Fayetteville announced today that the state will be placing on a legislative fast track the "Easley Plan," a state stimulus package "for the ordinary taxpayer." Under the proposal, every taxpayer in the state of North Carolina will receive an "Easley-like deal," worth $170,000 per year for the next five years.
Given the state’s constitutional restriction requiring a balanced budget, some legislative analysts had been skeptical of the practicality of the plan. However, following federal budget guidelines analysts in the legislature calculated that the total tax revenue generated by the Easley Plan payouts including income, sales and excise taxes, when combined with an economic impact factor multiplier, will exceed the cost of the payouts.
As with the original eponymous Easley Plan recipient, taxpayers receiving this stimulus payment will not be required to perform any useful work in return for their payments, and so the plan should not displace any of the currently gainfully employed workers left in the economy.
Gary D. Gaddy once owned a General Motors automobile and had a pre-Easley Plan job at the University of North Carolina, a wholly owned subsidiary of the North Carolina state government.
A version of this column was published in the Chapel Hill Herald Thursday June 11, 2009.
Copyright 2009 Gary D. Gaddy