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All things corporate malfeasance (and specifically Volkswagen)


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#41 Probabilistic

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Posted 24 September 2015 - 08:44 AM

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#42 Ari

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Posted 24 September 2015 - 09:08 AM

View Postindy, on 24 September 2015 - 06:04 AM, said:

It was around May of 2014 that ICCT reported the issue to the EPA. The EPA ordered VW to investigate and fix the issue. VW said they did. At that point the EPA still didn't have a reason to suspect this was flagrant lying and intentional deceit by VW but rather it was just some technical glitch or other. It wasn't until the second round of tests failed that everybody said WTF? So it doesn't really seem like the EPA was sitting on their hands so much to me.

Not to mention that this was the sort of situation that required them to be really damn sure VW was really cheating before they went public. VW has lost a third of its market cap in under a week. The EPA had to do its diligence before it could act on this.

#43 J-CA

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Posted 24 September 2015 - 10:22 AM

View PostPractical Girl, on 23 September 2015 - 08:55 PM, said:

Within some reality? I can squint and see your point. But the EPA was- fairly, and within good science- notified a year a half ago that this company broke the law. Internationally? I'm not sure. But US policy/law? Yep. And EPA sat on it.
What's up with all the baseless accusation-ing here? There is zero evidence the EPA "sat" on this.
What you like them to do is make public accusations of malfeasance that may risk bankrupting a huge multinational company, ruining thousands of car dealerships, and undermine the value of a large number of vehicles owned by Americans based on one study?

http://spectrum.ieee...ght-vw-cheating

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“We presented this in a public forum in San Diego, in the spring of 2014; we said, these are two vehicles; we’re presenting what we can present,” Carder says. “And EPA people were in the audience.” Meanwhile, the sponsoring group, called the International Council on Clean Transportation, published the results online as well.
The information was out there for more than a year. But the auto press missed its significance.
The EPA did not. It started testing with a vengence, going through all the necessary protocols before formally approaching Volkswagen. VW resisted for a while, then it admitted that it had deliberately cheated.
“What’s surprising to me was their total admission,” says Carder. He offered no opinion on who might have been behind the scheme.
What the EPA did here was exactly the right thing, they made sure they were right and they convinced the offender that they had so much evidence that they had to admit to the behaviour is question. No drawn-out court battles, zero risk of the EPA being found to be out of line and the US government being sued for billions.
We are talking about an end-to-end resolution of this thing in under 16 months, that is science & law at light speed.
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#44 Progressive whisperer

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Posted 24 September 2015 - 10:30 AM

To further J-CA's point, compare to how long it took to fight the tobacco industry, or the on-going fight with energy. LGM just posted on the last of those:

http://www.lawyersgu...-climate-change
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#45 indy

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Posted 24 September 2015 - 11:16 AM

It's not only VW owners and the environment, but many thousands of jobs, including many American ones. There is a manufacturing plant in TN, and I'm doubtful it will survive, so it'll likely take down some of the supply chain with it.

There are always trade-offs and EPA deals with them all the time. They aren't a militant organization (in spite of the GOP characterization), just slow and steady and willing to consider all the repercussions of their actions.

#46 J-CA

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Posted 25 September 2015 - 09:27 AM

View Postindy, on 24 September 2015 - 11:16 AM, said:

It's not only VW owners and the environment, but many thousands of jobs, including many American ones. There is a manufacturing plant in TN, and I'm doubtful it will survive, so it'll likely take down some of the supply chain with it.
I wonder if the US manufacturing assets might be the safest as they are so new and the US is such a large market. Even if this sends the company under I imagine it would come out of bankruptcy more or less intact and with the same general product line.
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#47 Banty

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Posted 25 September 2015 - 09:40 AM

View Postindy, on 22 September 2015 - 07:34 PM, said:

You're assuming they are in collusion (and therefore have knowledge who else is doing it). Maybe that's true, but it seems more likely that one or more just arrived there due to the same pressures. The big question in my mind is whether or not gas engines have the same issues. If so, it's going to be a big deal. I was already suspicious that they all seemed to easily make the new federal fuel and emission standards.

Companies contract with any number of agencies that benchmark everything from production yields to employee compensation. It's not smoking-cigars-in-a-panelled-room collusion, but collusion is rampant.

That's not saying there is that sort of collusion here. It sure would be an interesting aspect of this if there were.
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#48 J-CA

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Posted 25 September 2015 - 09:46 AM

View PostBanty, on 25 September 2015 - 09:40 AM, said:

That's not saying there is that sort of collusion here. It sure would be an interesting aspect of this if there were.
It should be noted that the original study done on the Diesels by the university team found that the BMW X5 they applied the same tests to either matched or outperformed the stationary emissions tests. I have seen nothing reported that points to a problem outside of VW so far, does anyone have a link?

I would also like to mention that when Cummins and Cat were caught doing the same in the '90's the final result was that Cat doesn't make Diesel engines anymore, IIRC they just up and quit after paying their fine.
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#49 Progressive whisperer

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Posted 25 September 2015 - 09:52 AM

View PostJ-CA, on 25 September 2015 - 09:46 AM, said:

It should be noted that the original study done on the Diesels by the university team found that the BMW X5 they applied the same tests to either matched or outperformed the stationary emissions tests. I have seen nothing reported that points to a problem outside of VW so far, does anyone have a link?

I would also like to mention that when Cummins and Cat were caught doing the same in the '90's the final result was that Cat doesn't make Diesel engines anymore, IIRC they just up and quit after paying their fine.

Here was one report yesterday on the BMW X3. It might be an outlier, but in the current situation it caused a hit on BMW stock value.

http://www.bloomberg...as-probe-widens
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#50 Traveler

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Posted 25 September 2015 - 10:22 AM

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the final result was that Cat doesn't make Diesel engines anymore, IIRC they just up and quit after paying their fine.
Cat sells diesels for sure. Are you saying they dont make them?
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#51 J-CA

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Posted 25 September 2015 - 11:41 AM

View PostTraveler, on 25 September 2015 - 10:22 AM, said:

Cat sells diesels for sure. Are you saying they dont make them?
Sorry, wrong phrasing, they don't make anything for roadways anymore:
http://www.cat.com/e...hway-truck.html

Quote

ON-HIGHWAY ENGINE SUPPORT CONTINUES

Caterpillar remains committed to our existing on-highway engine customers by continuing to provide service and support for all Cat Engines. So you can count on Caterpillar for total product support for the life of your engine.

I was mistaken about quitting after paying their fine too, they had to retrofit everything afterwards and once that technology couldn't meet the new standards then they quit. They license their name to some other company for Highway Tractors now but they don't make them anymore.

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#52 HockeyDon

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Posted 25 September 2015 - 12:33 PM

View PostProgressive whisperer, on 25 September 2015 - 09:52 AM, said:

Here was one report yesterday on the BMW X3. It might be an outlier, but in the current situation it caused a hit on BMW stock value.

http://www.bloomberg...as-probe-widens

I read that was a single test for a duration of 1 hour. Not quite the scientific rigor one would want to see.
Well, fuck.

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#53 indy

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Posted 28 September 2015 - 08:45 AM

2 million Audi diesels are apparently fitted with the same software: http://uk.businessin...015-9?r=US&IR=T

#54 LFC

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Posted 28 September 2015 - 09:08 AM

Two numbers hit me like bricks.

First, the emissions from VW's "clean diesel" cars is actually about 40x more than they reported. This is not fudging a bit to make the numbers, this is a frank admission that they simply were incapable of building the cars they marketed and sold to people. Trade-in values have just dropped to shit on these things. There's going to be an avalanche of personal lawsuits against the company, which I suspect will make it to one or more class action suits. VW took the risk and hopefully every last cent of profits they made from this plus punitive fines will bitch slap them into next Tuesday.

Second, the CEO who oversaw this fraud and just resigned might just walk away with $68M plus perks.

Quote

Should Volkswagen's board find the CEO had no knowledge of the software and left the company for no fault of his own, The Wall Street Journal reports, not only will he be entitled to his full pension (which exceeds 28.6 million euros), he'll also be eligible to receive "the equivalent of a maximum of two years of his total remuneration."

Per the company's 2014 annual report, Winterkorn brought home 15.8 million euros ($18 million) in compensation that year, meaning he could tack on an extra 31.6 euros to his pension.

But of course we know that corporate boards have a great history of being responsible when it comes to scandals like this. [/snark]
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#55 D. C. Sessions

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Posted 29 September 2015 - 07:50 PM

Two words, LFC: "claw back."
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#56 AnBr

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Posted 30 September 2015 - 09:57 PM

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Pray for Trump: Psalm 109:8

"Science is more than a body of knowledge; it is a way of thinking. I have a foreboding of an America in my children's or grandchildren's time - when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the key manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers arc in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority; when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what's true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness.

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The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark
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On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe


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#57 drdredel

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Posted 03 October 2015 - 01:47 PM

View PostLFC, on 28 September 2015 - 09:08 AM, said:

Two numbers hit me like bricks.

First, the emissions from VW's "clean diesel" cars is actually about 40x more than they reported. This is not fudging a bit to make the numbers, this is a frank admission that they simply were incapable of building the cars they marketed and sold to people. Trade-in values have just dropped to shit on these things. There's going to be an avalanche of personal lawsuits against the company, which I suspect will make it to one or more class action suits. VW took the risk and hopefully every last cent of profits they made from this plus punitive fines will bitch slap them into next Tuesday.

Second, the CEO who oversaw this fraud and just resigned might just walk away with $68M plus perks.



But of course we know that corporate boards have a great history of being responsible when it comes to scandals like this. [/snark]

Sure, but technically if he really truly didn't know (meaning he was just an incompetent-ish CEO) then the board demanded his resignation without cause. That is assuming that they did and he didn't just up and quit. If that's the case, then he's entitled to whatever perks his contract guarantee, as absurd as that looks on paper.
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#58 AnBr

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Posted 03 October 2015 - 01:56 PM

So how did these things pass the emissions test that many states require of car owners annually?
Pray for Trump: Psalm 109:8

"Science is more than a body of knowledge; it is a way of thinking. I have a foreboding of an America in my children's or grandchildren's time - when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the key manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers arc in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority; when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what's true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness.

— Carl Sagan
The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark
1995


“As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

— H.L. Mencken
On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe


“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”

— Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Second inaugural address January, 1937

#59 D. C. Sessions

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Posted 03 October 2015 - 02:45 PM

View PostAnBr, on 03 October 2015 - 01:56 PM, said:

So how did these things pass the emissions test that many states require of car owners annually?

Are they required for diesel cars? IIRC diesels get a very different treatment.
The way a lot of catastrophes happen is that X doesn't occur because there are safeguards in place, therefore people assume X isn't a worry and they remove the safeguards. Then X happens.
— Nate Silver
"Robots aren't the problem. Capitalism is." -- Last words of Stephen Hawking.
These days, "libertarian" is just a euphemism for a Nazi who's afraid to commit.
"If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention." -- Heather Heyer
"I'd rather have my child, but by golly, if I gotta give her up, we're gonna make it count." -- Her mother
"Your purpose, then, plainly stated, is that you will destroy the Government, unless you be allowed to construe and enforce the Constitution as you please, on all points in dispute between you and us. You will rule or ruin in all events." -- some RINO

#60 AnBr

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Posted 03 October 2015 - 03:36 PM

Could be, I don't really know. I have never had a diesel, nor is there any emissions test here.
Pray for Trump: Psalm 109:8

"Science is more than a body of knowledge; it is a way of thinking. I have a foreboding of an America in my children's or grandchildren's time - when the United States is a service and information economy; when nearly all the key manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers arc in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those in authority; when, clutching our crystals and nervously consulting our horoscopes, our critical faculties in decline, unable to distinguish between what feels good and what's true, we slide, almost without noticing, back into superstition and darkness.

— Carl Sagan
The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark
1995


“As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

— H.L. Mencken
On Politics: A Carnival of Buncombe


“The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much; it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little.”

— Franklin Delano Roosevelt
Second inaugural address January, 1937





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