I am going out on a limb here, but I think Noah Smith is mistaken in his belief that the change from ICE to E power cars with change the auto industry and make it another Rust Belt casualty.

Firstly, autos are already manufactured outside of Detroit in the Sunbelt states to undermine unions. That process has already started to take away union wage setting power. Nothing new there.

What does changing the powerplant do? It makes cars simpler and ultimately less costly to maintain. But cars are not engines, transmissions, and a fuel tank with a body, but rather a body with some sort of powerplant. There is an industry converting classic cars to become EVs, so clearly, despite the claims of some "petrol heads" the body, not the powerplant is more important.

Will more electronics and software shift production to places where this is the central expertise? I ws tried in Silicon Valley - twice - and failed. So I don't think so.

Will the battery be the issue? Maybe, although it will eventually become a cheaper, standardized, commodity item, just like other parts of the car.

AFAICS, the main EV threat comes from foreign suppliers like China. This is no different than the Japanese (and German) small car threat during the 1970s when high gas prices and poor manufacturing quality of US manufacturers undermined the market for large saloon cars. But as we know, the once almighty GM is now a shadow of its former self. So what is new and due to factors that have nothing to do with EVs?

A bigger picture is what technology changes have fundamentally changed other industries? Computers? Doesn't look like it. Chips in consumer appliances? Again, I don't see much change in suppliers other than the existing shift to offshoring and manufacturing in China, the same drivers that has impacted the garment industry that has not had a fundamental technology change.

In summary, the US auto industry may well change, but the changes have almost nothing to do with the phase out of ICEs and changing autos to EVs.

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I'm not entire sure that African-Americans experienced in both life in the United States and US politics would have agreed with the young pre-Professor DeLong's understanding of how the US political system worked. Which leads in today's politics to the need to acknowledge that 40% of the US population considers people with black skins to be deeply inferior to white people and, when such gain any amount of economic or political power, to hate them with the fury of 1000 suns. And perhaps the US has been that way since 1607.

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"the holy estimable Jim Hines"

I'm sure this is the nicest thing anyone's ever said about him.

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I suppose r* can be turned into a vector of Fed policy instrument setting that result in optimal (maximally facilitative of relative price changes in response to real economic events) inflation rates.

But why? Isn't t more transparent to discuss whether 2% IS the optimal FAIT and what the vector of Fed instrument setting to achieve it should be?

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