The upfront cost of an airplane is only part of the overall cost of aviation. And a remanufactured-old aircraft will still cost more than an old-old aircraft. If you remanufacture an old aircraft to include shiny new engines and avionics, will it really cost far less per hour to operate? Even after you've allowed for… » 8/01/14 7:05pm Yesterday 7:05pm

Cars in that era were less reliable than today, and life was less sterile, and there was a much greater chance that you'd get your hands dirty in some other way whilst en route from A to B. And maybe you'd want to freshen up when you arrive at your destination but before you say hello and shake hands with… » 7/24/14 6:13pm 7/24/14 6:13pm

A Yugo isn't Russian. It's copy of a Fiat, and the stereotypical Yugo was built in Yugoslavia, which was trying very hard to be non-aligned and separate from the Soviets. It's half a continent away from Moscow.

There's no shortage of other license-built Fiats in Russia itself.

</pedant>
» 7/24/14 5:00pm 7/24/14 5:00pm

In the UK, retirees must buy new cars - never used. It's mandatory.

This is because any retiree must have bought their first car during the British Leyland era, and must therefore have bitter experiences of any car more than 12 months old. Twelve months is the time needed for rust to eat all the way through the sills… » 7/22/14 6:58pm 7/22/14 6:58pm

Looks pretty, but I think it's impractical. Usually, teams would prefer a 4-door car so that a crew member (coach, medic, mechanic, whatever) can lean out of the back window and assist the rider during the race. That's less practical with a 2-door jaaaaag coupe. » 7/21/14 8:40am 7/21/14 8:40am

The cool thing about phones is that you have one endpoint that can connect to lots of other endpoints, all around the world, which are outside your control. There is no meaningful way to "secure" an arbitrary phonecall, end-to-end, above and beyond what existing carriers already provide.

If Obama wanted to phone Angela… » 7/20/14 4:30pm 7/20/14 4:30pm

Lots of governments have had high tariffs. South Korea is very much an exception, in that this strategy eventually built some world-class carmakers, after much pain for consumers. A hundred other countries have felt the same pain without the same gain.

Just look at the long-term punitive taxes on car imports into… » 7/16/14 4:23pm 7/16/14 4:23pm

A plane is usually a valuable asset which is hard to replace. Relatively slight damage will ground an aircraft, so if you want to cause disruption, shooting at an aircraft is much more effective than shooting at a building.

Although maybe they hadn't intended to attack *that* plane (a 727 isn't so precious, it's… » 7/15/14 3:51pm 7/15/14 3:51pm

Haven't seen the six-door, but the four-door is pretty popular in other developing countries. If you want to haul a family and some big luggage on poor roads without a lot of money, and if you don't trust used cars in a country where everybody else wants to haul lots of stuff on poor roads without spending a lot on… » 7/15/14 3:08pm 7/15/14 3:08pm

One day at Bentley HQ:
"We need some kind of racing Continental to keep the brand fresh and sporty"
"How on earth can you race a Bentley Continental? Autocross? Ahahaha"
"Um, Rally? Can we make a Bentley Continental rally-car?"
"Not a chance. It's too heavy for any race. Where can we get away with making a silhouette… » 7/15/14 2:58pm 7/15/14 2:58pm