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To say that conservative commentators have had it in for the Chevy Volt is putting it mildly. Rush Limbaugh labelled the Volt a terrible product, undeserving of its many car of the year awards. Fox News claimed that American taxpayers were subsidizing the Volt to the tune of $81,000 a copy. Right wing bloggers have labeled the Volt's "effective gas mileage" as 27 mpg. For some on the right, the Volt has become a hated, rolling symbol of union labor, environmental awareness and government intervention in the market.

But no one, no one, has spent as much time boiling about the Volt as Fox's Neil Cavuto. Cavuto has gone off on the Volt as a vehicle that "doesn't work" and "the dumbest thing I've ever seen." He's claimed it's defective, that it's failing as a product, and that no one is buying Volts but the government. He has even claimed the Volt leads to divorces. Seriously. For a Volt owner, volunteering to discuss the car on Cavuto's show is like signing up to talk up your favorite BBQ joint at a vegan convention.

However, new Volt owner Eric Rotbard not only dared step into Cavuto's den, he left the EV-hating host without a lot of room to attack. As Green Car Reports described it:

By the middle of the interview, Cavuto is clearly troubled by his inability to catch his guest out, and goes for the jugular: the topic of range anxiety. But instead of catching his guest out, Cavuto betrays his own ignorance on the car.

"So when you are on the road, or you take a longer trip, where do you charge up?" questions Cavuto, obviously trying to imply that the range-extended plug-in hybrid can't cope with long distance trips.

Despite the many taunts Cavuto tosses over the course of the interview (including asking if the car has a hole in the floor like the Flintstones, so it can be pushed when it stops running) Rotbard kept his cool throughout; a good lesson for anyone confronted by those pre-disposed to somehow see a vehicle as a political affront. Watch the video after the jump.





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  • 93 Comments
      SNP
      • 5 Months Ago
      +1 sandman for making a good point. I think bill oreilly/keith olbermann/jon stewart/stephen colbert are hilarious, but i'd never take their word for news. It's always half the story, I'd rather get it from 60 minutes, nightly news, fox news, nytimes, cnn. Sometimes i get the same report from multiple sources just to filter out the political innuendos that might slip in from the reporters.
      Marco Polo
      • 5 Months Ago
      Bizarre! Neil Cavuto is to news commentary, what Jerry Springer was to public affairs talk shows! Very few conservatives derive their information from Fox News. But the definition of 'Conservative' is very different outside of the US. Most people would define conservatives as being people of traditional values, prudent economic public expenditure and patriotic. Traditional Conservatives should derive news from the traditional conservative news organisations. Can you see the Economist, Spectator, Wall Street Journal or New York times, hiring Neil Cavuto? The US seems to have invented a new type of 'conservative', 'poorly educated' lower middle income, fearful of change, and desperate for a demagogue to follow. This is the party of the negative, people with irrational fears and conspiracy theories. The Left in the US seems to be be simply a mirror image of the same irrational ranting. Those in the middle are caught in the cross-fire, the voice of reason is suppressed because it doesn't promote good copy. (or for fear of upsetting anyone) . Fox News is essentially tabloid press. The Murdoch press has always made a great deal of money from tabloids. (however, to Rupert Murdoch's credit, he deploys a lot of those profits to keep 'Quality' publications alive). The fact that Neil Cavuto attacks EV's, and GM's Volt in particular, is evidence of his the fear of the future, and his cunning in exploiting the same fear in others. Neither Fox nor Neil Cavuto has any support, or even interest, from any oil company. The problem facing all major Oil companies, is finding more oil to fuel 4-6 billion customers, not worrying about a tiny number of EV's. No potential EV or GM Volt buyer is going to be dissuaded from buying by the rantings of Neil Cavuto.
        karlInSanDiego
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Marco Polo
        Cavuto came from CNBC which was the US's first dedicated financial channel, where he worked for many years. CNBC was, and is, considered to be legitimate, but ultimately it is still in business to broker news among the financial world's thieves big and small, and so we eventually equate Fox with CNBC with the Wall Street Journal with APM's Marketplace (heard nationally on NPR). There is a mentality that money is a game, and there are no rules in this game, but no one loses when you win, because it's just a game. That's what CNBC has sold for years, and it's indicative of mindset of those who label themselves selfish... I mean conservative. Cavuto is a douche, and seems to really like the liberties his douche news station allows him. I'm really not understanding how you can say with such certainty that Fox has no support or interest from oil companies. Are you just that much smarter than everyone else? Genie Energy, American Shale Oil, Israeli Energy Initiative, Cato Institute...
        Rotation
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Marco Polo
        The Economist is a liberal newspaper. That is, going by the definitions outside the US (as you brought up).
        Spec
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Marco Polo
        "Very few conservatives derive their information from Fox News." You do know that it is the most popular TV news station in the USA right? Certainly most people don't watch it much but those that do watch Cable news tend to watch Fox.
          Jason Allen
          • 5 Months Ago
          @Spec
          It's not news. GOPTV (fauxnews) is loser-baiting propaganda. Only fools think that channel has any integrity. They are whining liars who try to push the buttons of undereducated reactionaries. No murdoch toy can be trusted to provide truth to anyone anywhere. Roger aires wanted to make goptv and then he made fox(not)news. I'm shocked that people still tune in to be baited like that, it's depressing to me because I'd like to see people not driven by fear and hate which is what the gop use to win in order to help only the richest few.
          Spec
          • 5 Months Ago
          @Spec
          @Marco You think conservatives read The New Yorker? LOL. You are so off base. You really don't understand them.
          Spec
          • 5 Months Ago
          @Spec
          @Marco You really don't understand the American conservatives. They do watch Fox. And many listen to Rush. Very few read the Economist . . . that is viewed is 'liberal elitist European stuff' that more US liberals probably read. You need to realize that the very wealthy are only a very small part of the conservatives in general.
          Marco Polo
          • 5 Months Ago
          @Spec
          @Jason Allen Jason I hate to dispel your hatred, but it's a little misdirected. Firstly, very few 'rich' people would bother to watch Fox News. Secondly, Rupert Murdoch is not really interested in any form of propaganda. He makes money! To him Fox is just a money machine. if you want to see what Rupert Murdoch truly cares about, look through the balance sheet and see all the highly respected publications which would have long ceased to exist without Rupert's deep pockets and determination to keep them in existence. When Rupert Murdoch dies, a significant portion of the world quality press will die with him.
          Marco Polo
          • 5 Months Ago
          @Spec
          @Spec I'm confused,..."the most popular show on TV that people don't watch much"? I think I know what you are trying to say. But, and here's the thing, most true conservatives listened when at school, graduating with an ability to read. (As opposed to playing basketball) so they derive most of their news/opinion from written articles, in such publications as the Economist or the New Yorker.:) If you can't read, watch Net Work news, if you can't think, watch Fox news.
          lne937s
          • 5 Months Ago
          @Spec
          As someone who lives in New York, Democrats tend to read the NY Times, Republicans tend to read the NY Post (owned by News Corp., like Fox). http://www.nytimes.com/ http://www.nypost.com/ However, because New York is heavily Democratic, most Republicans in the US just disregard NY news papers. Also, newspaper readership tends to be higher here (better papers, time to read on the train, etc.) than in the rest of the country, and people are far more likely to get there news from TV in red states. If somebody outside of NYC is subscribing to the NY Times, it is a pretty safe bet that they are a Democrat.
        Smith Jim
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Marco Polo
        Comparing Neil Cavuto to Jerry Springer is an insult.... to Jerry Springer.
      Eric Edelen
      • 5 Months Ago
      As a Volt owner I've never commented before, but this retard Cavuto has inspired me. I've forgotten to plug in my Volt once and it simply doesn't matter. Just get in and drive (on gas). It's simply the most refined driving experience you can imagine. No gears, No shifting, pure linear acceleration, instant response, jaw dropping torque and porsche like handling. (really) I charge my Volt using true zero emission hydro electric power for about 46.9 cents each day @ 5.7₵/Kwh. That amounts to increasing my electric bill $15.00 per month saving me $280/mo on gas. Basically i'm no longer contributing to global warming, my $280/mo stays in the USA therefore addressing our dependence on foreign oil, and MY transportation costs go to my local electric coop which helps the economy and helps us more quickly realize a real smart grid. Most importantly... It is the most refined driving experience I've had, and is really FUN TO DRIVE. Any other talk is pure ignorance.
        rich
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Eric Edelen
        Dear Mr. Edelen First off, you shouldn't call Mr. Cavuto RETARDED as even you do not believe it and second, it is not politically correct to degrade people who actually do have mental challenges. From the remainder of your comment it is apparent you are altruistic and actually believe everyone that doesn't agree with you beliefs is an infidel. You see, most people don't share your beliefs which is the good old American version of freedom of speech. And by the way, if you "really believe" everything you say then return the $7,500,00 government rebate as you got a terrific bargain on this wonderful car.
      Nick
      • 5 Months Ago
      Fox is owned by an Australian multi-billionnaire who pledged to mislead the world, and use his influence to fleece the public via oil money. Murdoch is in bed with Koch Industries, and they do not care about anyone except themselves. Cavuto, O'Reilly and a few other hot-headed blowhards are just Murdoch's mouthpiece.
        Ryan
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Nick
        At least Australia passed their Carbon Tax plan today... :)
          Marco Polo
          • 5 Months Ago
          @Ryan
          @Ryan With 78% of opposition from the Australian people! By a minority government whose leader made a pre-election promise not to introduce a carbon tax! This is the same government that to retain the support of a key independent MP, will licence a huge coal/NG port impacting on the World Heritage Great Barrier Reef. If a general election were held today, the centre right opposition would receive the great landslide in the history of the nation.
        Aaron Schwarz
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Nick
        $6.40 per gallon in Australia now: makes the phev's (Volts et. al.) , hybrids (Prii et. al.) , and electrics (Leafs et. al) even more attractive in terms of their lower operating costs. As fuel prices rise, inefficient gas wasting vehicles look even worse. Win! Stuff that up your Ripoff Murderer (rupert murdoch)
          Marco Polo
          • 5 Months Ago
          @Aaron Schwarz
          @Aaron, Australian Gasoline is @1.33 per litre. (although prices fluctuate between states and rural areas). The Leaf is not on sale in Australia. In fact Australia produces it's own EV leaf equivalent. The Blade Electron. No Australian Government, State or Federal provides any incentive for EV's. But, here's an interesting fact. The Australian Green Party owns no EV's, the Federal Government purchased 3 , (2 iMevs). The Australian Labour Party, owns no EV's, but the evil Rupert Murdoch's News limited owns 11 and rents 14 ! (and the largest corporate fleet percentage of Hybrids) Murdoch also owned 4 electric vehicles, on his rural properties. Y'see, it pays to look through unbiased eyes.
          Aaron Schwarz
          • 5 Months Ago
          @Aaron Schwarz
          The fuel price is variable: it sells for between $1.33 and $1.58 AU dollar per liter ( $5.03 and $5.98 AU dollar per gallon), Prices spiked the other day when I posted my comment to $1.69/ Liter in some places in response to the passage of the AU National Carbon Tax law. This laws will charge AU's 500 largest carbon emitters (targeting brown coal power plants in AU) (excluding aluminum producers) $23 AU per ton of carbon emissions. Theses new taxes go into effect next year. Considering how much power oil refineries consumer in processing oil into fuels, it is reasonable to assume that this will increase the price of fuel in AU. They are trying to move to cleaner energy sources in AU, and taxing the excessive emissions from brown coal power producers was one way to encourage sustainable alternatives.
        Marco Polo
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Nick
        @Nick This is the same Australian, who keeps 70% of the world quality press alive? The same Australian who funded the University that became the first to study climate change ? This the same Australian who persuaded Tony Blair to create a government ministry for Climate change? Wild hate filled accusations, are just that, fact-less, baseless and only believed by the ignorant.
      Yespage
      • 5 Months Ago
      Cavuto was doing his best Don Rickles impersonation. What a jerk! That looked like a typical Discussion Web Board conversation. Yeah, the Volt isn't selling like a Camry. Most new technology doesn't. What is bothersome is that Cavuto was clearly uninterested in anything but cashing his check from the Oil Industry for doing that piece.
      Boyd
      • 5 Months Ago
      I think that it is funny how he thinks that a large person cannot fit in the volt. I am 330 lbs and I fit in there fine. (When I bought my Volt I was 378 lbs).
        Aaron Schwarz
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Boyd
        He and many other GOP are just scared of anything new that they dont completely understand, and will invent reasons to insult things like the Volt. The piston engine is so old, that even the most limited of News Corp's employee's understand the (1Suck, 2 Squeeze, 3 Bang, 4 Blow) steam punk routine going on inside their ICE powered vehicles. Electric motors on the other hand with only one moving part rely on complex high power electric circuits to operate, and those are far more complex than a piston engine in terms of comprehensible operation; especially variable phase AC designs like the ones used in the VOLT.
      Smith Jim
      • 5 Months Ago
      I saw this on another website, "...Effective today, GM is allowing its Chevrolet dealers around the country to discretionarily sell their Volt demos, thus more than doubling the company’s inventory of Volts available for sale..." Volt sales are likely to spike upward this month. I wonder how Mr. Cavuto and other Volt haters will explain this sales increase.
        Sasparilla Fizz
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Smith Jim
        They'll just ignore it - when reality doesn't conform with what their political view says things should be, the desired political view trumps reality (which is why they are attacking plug in vehicles in the first place).
      • 5 Months Ago
      As always, follow the money: Prince Alwaleed bin Talal al-Saud of Saudi Arabia, through his Kingdom Holding Company, owns 7% of News Corp.'s shares, making Kingdom Holdings the second largest shareholder.
        Marco Polo
        • 5 Months Ago
        Kingdom Investments, whose principle shareholder is a Saudi citizen, owns 6.3% of the common stock, (giving Kingdom about 1.4% of the voting rights). Kingdom owns equally substantial interests in Amazon,AOL, Hong Kong & Shanghai Bank , Apple Inc, Coca Cola, Pepsi, Motorola, Citigroup, Compaq, eBay,Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts,Hewlett-Packard, McDonald's, Priceline.com Inc, Procter & Gamble, The Walt Disney Company, and hundreds of other corporations. Kingdom has no nominees on the Board of Fox, and with directors like , Arthur M. Siskind, Stanley S. Shuman, Andrew S. B. Knight of J.Rothchild Capital Inc. It would seem that any suggestion of control, by Prince Alwaleed bin Talal al-Saud is a bit far fetched ! Oh, I forgot, there's another director, Mr Viet Dinh!
      Timo
      • 5 Months Ago
      "By calling Mr. Rotbard a good sport isn't this an admission by Cavuto that he was purposely being an a-hole?". No, that's an indication that he thinks he "won" that discussion, and his congratulation was for admitting that his "opponent" was cool enough not to lose his temper when losing. Unfortunately that is the way people with religious stupidity (about anything including cars) react to things. Never admit that you are wrong, even when overwhelmed by evidence of contrary.
      Michael
      • 5 Months Ago
      Ford, I won't paint all conservatives with that brush. Their leadership on the other hand...
      Ryan
      • 5 Months Ago
      The Daily Show did a pretty good piece on that. The opinion side says something enough to make news for the news side to cover. Was the title "For Fox Sake"?
      winc06
      • 5 Months Ago
      Cavuto makes perfect sense if you have an ideology that is more important than facts or the truth. Essentially they are disappointed that GM did not go out of business because it has a union. They are like rabid dogs on the subject of workers being able to organize to protect themselves against the abuses of management. They have no problem with Japanese assembly factories in southern states with no unions , low wages, and few benefits. They especially like companies that have moved their workforce rabble overseas. They will continue to attack GM even when the facts do not merit it, because that is what they are all about.
        rich
        • 5 Months Ago
        @winc06
        I personally love the auto factories in the South. And it is not only Japanese brands that are made there. They produce the highest quality cars, built in state-of-the- art factories, pay the highest wages in the area, offer substantial benefits, and produce cars at the lowest costs and sales price. You can't beat that. GM should not have and would not have gone out of business if they declared bankruptcy. In reality they would be stronger today with a much brighter future. People are angry with GM because they created their own problems by producing lousy cars, over paying their workforceand offering benefits that could not be paid for. Why should millions of people have seen stock in related companies go bust while the government paid the unions and GM for benefits they promised but couldn't pay.
          James Dwyer
          • 5 Months Ago
          @rich
          Your argument makes no sense. How can a Japanese company on one hand make "the lowest cost car at the highest quality" if they are paying top dollar salaries to employees just as GM did, when that was the exact reason why GM's products were often as you describe "lousy?" That's why many American companies moved labor overseas and sourced out contracts; to stay competitive. Go do some research on the history of labor unions in Detroit; it's no new issue, as it's been prevalent all the way through the 60's an 70's. In case you haven't noticed, quality is falling on Japanese products. Ford has recently overtaken Toyota and Honda in surveys by firms such as JD Power and Consumer Reports. Government incentives on electric cars, regardless of whether they're the best solution or not, are aimed at one goal; to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. This Cavuto clown flames the Volt for all the wrong reasons, and shows his own ignorance in many ways. Everybody knocked the Prius in a very similar fashion when it was released at the turn of the millennium, and look where that car is now? Many governments even offered tax credit on the Prius!
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