Following up on a post the other day about This Week with a Roundtable that’s Out-of-Touch with the Twenty-First Century, here’s a perfect example of George Will’s blathering cum gravitas gone awry. This past Sunday, as the roundtable discussed climate change, Will said the following:
I assume the president is talking about the Prius. It’s affordable because Toyota sells it at a loss, and it can afford to sell it at a loss because it is selling twice as many gas-guzzling pickup trucks of the sort our president detests. So as an auto executive, he’s off to a rocky start.
Leaving aside Will’s obvious disdain for the very idea of a functional, sleek, environmentally car — you know, all the yuppies drive it — it’s worth noting that he’s completely wrong. As Steve Benen pointed out this morning:
Actually, the only thing “rocky” here is the quality of Will’s analysis.
In reality, Toyota used to sell hybrids at a loss — in 1997. The industry and consumer trends have changed considerably over the last 12 years, and Toyota started making a profit on each Prius sold way back in 2001.
Obviously this isn’t the first time Will’s been caught in a lie when it comes to climate change (need we rehash the furor over his deeply dishonest Washington Post columns on the issue, the Post editor’s subsequent refusal to make a correction, but the paper’s decision to run a variety of columns and op-eds that stated just how wrong Will was?). And it’s certainly not the first time George “Call Me Curmudgeon” Will has decided to wax poetic on something that gets his goat, and ends up sounding hopelessly snobby and terribly wrong.
But it’s getting annoying. I could deal with the snobbery if he’d just get his facts straight.