WSJ OpEd Bashing Tesla and CR

WSJ OpEd Bashing Tesla and CR

Below is a link to a published in the WSJ, for your reading interest, and to induce eye-rolling.
For an added level of entertainment, for those who have WSJ access, take a look at the comments from readers associated with this article. Some real prizewinners there making comments.

Because there may be some copyright issues with pasting the article, the email link from WSJ is below.

From The Wall Street Journal
Aug. 28, 2015 7:04 p.m. ET

Consumer Reports Spends Its Juice, Badly

I must say, as much as I generally can read and find some useful points in an Op-Ed piece, this is poorly reasoned at nearly every angle... Perhaps every angle.
There is either an agenda here, an effort to be inflammatory, or both.
I am disappointed in the WSJ for allowing such a piece to appear in their publication, masquerading as journalism, and instead is really an improperly reasoned Op-Ed piece.
Free speech is good, but this type of piece should have had a published counter-point opinion at the very least.

I have more thoughts on this but will curtail them for now.
Let the comments begin...

trixiew | August 28, 2015

Good Lord

Dwdnjck@ca | August 28, 2015

Thanks for posting. I refuse to pay for crap published by Walls Street Journal.

Madatgascar | August 28, 2015

Prostitution is a pretty strong accusation. This article doesn't do much to refute CR's conclusions. "Battery juice...must be replenished at considerable inconvenience" seems to be the strongest objection. They must be talking about the 5 seconds it takes for me to plug the car in at night.


redacted | August 28, 2015

Alrighty then.

Big T | August 28, 2015

Please note that this is not an article. It is an opinion piece and, according to the OP, is labeled as such.

It never occurs to most people that the fuel for ICE cars is heavily subsidized. Let's educate them without shouting. Maybe someone with a WSJ account can post that (nicely) in the opinion piece comments.

SbMD | August 28, 2015

I'll admit that it is odd to have a scale to 100 that you can score a 103...
But even if I remove my own bias in favor of the MS, I still do believe in CR's assessment that the MS is an exceptional car. Hard for some people to accept it, and I think the author has their own agenda.

Conveniently forgets the subsidies to oil companies... any support for alternative energy tech is a drop in the bucket in comparison.

EternalChampion | August 28, 2015

I'm curious which lobbyist group this guy works for.

barrykmd | August 28, 2015

Odd that they didn't mention oil subsidies.

EternalChampion | August 28, 2015

Or government bailouts

SbMD | August 28, 2015

I had seriously thought about putting a rational comment in the WSJ about the piece and systematically take it apart. Then I started reading the posters' inane comments, flawed logic, and lack of intellectual competence, I realized that the people who might benefit the most wouldn't understand a word I was writing. A few posters that had some rational thoughts, but they were few and far between.

Here's the link to the original article and the comments to see for yourself:

Jay M | August 28, 2015

Years ago when the Poesche Cayene came out, enthusiasts and magazine reviews were bashing the car saying it's not a real Porsche, and not a real SUV. Finally, one reviewer said to that crowd, "shut up and drive one".

The point being that once you see how amazing that car is you get it. Now, years later, likely because of the revenue it generated we have the amazing 918.

CR like everyone else feels the need to be and promote anything green. Tesla is the only company that has made an electric car that can actually be the only car you own. Government subsidies, or new laws are sometimes required to force an industry to be socially or environmentally responsible. Everyone is in business to make money. A clean burning engine costs more to produce than dirty one. Who in their right mind would create a clean engine? They would go bankrupt. Laws had to be made to force change. Everyone had to pay for for a car, so the playing field could be even.

Because of government subsides, Tesla is still in business. Because of that great American innovation, the Model S, the rest of the world will benefit when batteries get better and cheaper. Tesla took the greatest risk, and if they stay innovative, they can be the top car maker in America. All while being green.

Aside from the car, Tesla want to harvest energy from sun and store it in batteries. If that works, Then the world's electricity will indeed be very green.

With everyone gushing over the Model S, there will always be a contrarian. Just like one out of a hundred iPhone reviews are bad.


David N | August 28, 2015

Opinion or not, poor journalism ( in my OPINION of course)

Madatgascar | August 28, 2015

He actually suggests we buy a 600CC sport bike to beat the acceleration.

Holman, you idiot, you are only looking at one variable. The same Tesla that goes 0 to 60 in 2.8 seconds also has the cargo capacity of a Grand Caravan, a phenomenal user interface, and the highest safety rating of any car ever. Do you have any appreciation for the engineering breakthrough it takes to beat every other sedan in virtually every category except cupholders? CR's rating system was built to consider all these variables, and the P85D just comes out on top - by a lot. Deal with it. Charging convenience may not be taken into consideration, but if it was, the 5 second Tesla plug-in destroys the ICE's 10 minute stinky gas station stops.

jsdowns1 | August 28, 2015

Time to cancel my WSJ subscription.

Nantang | August 28, 2015

Right. Tesla is getting all the government handouts, while the oil industry is barely eeking by, constantly suffering public scrutiny of their strained budgets and near brushes with bankruptcy.

The Wall Street Journal needs to start publishing articles about business in this universe, not the evil parallel one where Obama has a beard and Elon Musk a scar. Mr. Journalist, your agonizer, please...

SbMD | August 28, 2015

My old 8th grade Journalism Class teacher would have given me an "F" if I had written this. Poor fact checking, rambling musings disguised as journalism, and written to incite rather than be thought provoking.

mathwhiz | August 28, 2015

You had an "8th grade Journalism Class teacher"? Oh my...

Anyway, journalism these days is more about clickbait and eyeball attractors than anything else. And in this, it probably achieves its sad goal...

GLO | August 28, 2015

For a minute, I thought it was from Seeking Alpha....

carlk | August 28, 2015

@Jay M That's true. Clean and fuel efficiency have always been high on CR's agenda but this WSJ aticle is really not about CR and the review. The author was just mad that government subside worked. He was so hoping that Tesla would fail miserably to prove the point those people (you know who) have. Well too bad government assitence helped to make this fantastic company with fantastic product possible. That's the way it is.

Tropopause | August 28, 2015

Holman W. Jenkins Jr. Why do you revel in your father's name? Create a name for yourself, man! And for God's sake, stop supporting German products over those made in your own backyard!

Why are you ashamed that the first American start-up car company to go public since Ford is actually producing a better product than the foreign competition? I wonder if you even drive an American-made vehicle? | August 28, 2015

Good reminder of why I finally cancelled my WSJ sub...O

brec | August 28, 2015

Uh... Does the Model S lack sun visors?

(Awaiting 85D delivery.)

brec | August 28, 2015

OK, never mind. I should have searched before posting, not after.

(Re: sun visors)

Archer | August 28, 2015

Every gas guzzling car owner has their fuel subsidized by our tax dollars.

melfont | August 28, 2015

I think that it's pretty obvious that WSJ lost its objectivity when it was bought by Rupert Murdoch.

Chunky Jr. | August 28, 2015

WTF does any public policy have to do with whether or not it is a good car? The author is an ideological dinosaur who only cares about his views of public policy and anything that benefits from a policy he hates is, by definition, terrible. Completely brainwashed.

Chunky Jr. | August 28, 2015

If the author is going to get this outraged about subsidies for Tesla, he should also direct his ire at homeowners, farmers, people with kids, people who put money into 401Ks or similar, and countless other special interest groups who also benefit from breaks in the tax code one way or another. Condemn them all, or STFU.

Chunky Jr. | August 28, 2015

To be clear, I'm not condemning subsidies for anything. I'm totally annoyed at the author for writing such a ridiculous article taking CR to task basically over a tax credit he hates while not saying a single word about other tax credits. He's a total hypocrite. It's bad for CR to not mention the tax credit he hates, but it is OK for him to not mention other tax credits.

dugfink | August 28, 2015

Hey WSJ...Do you remember printing this little gem back in April of this year?

In the event you forgot, I pasted a snippet here to jog your memory...

"Mostly, though, what I have is awe. The Model S is a daring public experiment in automotive vision that has the impudence to make the finest, fastest luxury cars feel like Edwardian antiques. I know a lot of gear heads. The only ones who don’t think the Model S is the best in the world haven’t driven one."

Chunky Jr. | August 28, 2015

@ dugfink : Good find. None of that matters to the author. The only thing he cares about is how much he hates the tax credit, so therefore the Model S sucks and CR is a prostitute for disagreeing with him.

todd | August 29, 2015

According to Wikipedia, the owner of the WSJ is News Corp., which also owns the New York Post.

Also, according to Wikipedia, referencing the NYPost: "The modern version of the paper is written in tabloid format."

Evidently, the WSJ also adheres to a similar standard by directing an "op-ed" piece by a clueless writer who fabricated yet another piece riddled with inaccuracies and muckraking regarding Tesla's unquestionable innovations.

The WSJ's "fact-checking" department seems to be on vacation.

News Corp. is owned by Rupert Murdoch.

Ankit Mishra | August 29, 2015

Haters gonna hate.

Bubba2000 | August 29, 2015

It is really great - at least for me - that we got idiots in Wall Street or even CNBC like the author of this article. Most of them have not driven a MS or own one, let alone visited the factory, etc. Back in late 2012 and early 2013, folks like him bet 47% of the float short. When I bought a position, they offered 20%/year to borrow the shares and the stock was $35/s. Rest is history!

MS is an impressive car with cutting edge tech that allows rapid improvement in performance, features, etc.This tech will be applied to the MX. it will continue improving at a rate much higher that what the ICE autos can accomplish. What do you think the MS/X equivalent will be in 5 years?

True disruption will happen if Tesla can deliver a base MS for $35k. Or even at a lower price. $5/week in electricity to run.

lennier | August 29, 2015

On behalf of Australia I'd like to apologise for Rupert Murdoch and his fossil fuel mates, and their stupid op eds in his rags.

Al1 | August 29, 2015

Cancelled my WSJ subscription a while ago based on their biased Tesla coverage. No regrets since then.

PhillyGal | August 29, 2015


Don't they realize that the government offers this to every other auto maker too? And oil, don't get me started on oil! In my state drillers barely pay any taxes or some such nonsense.

Naysayers need to realize that no one is claiming everyone should buy a $120k car. The whole flipping point is that Tesla is 1 - proving a car can be great and efficient and 2 - making high margins so they can finance the car we're all really waiting for.

Grr, I need to go to the gym and work off my anger at this article!

Iowa92x | August 29, 2015

Cup holders and sun visors are easy to fix. Tesla, why not improve them to shut these nags up.

tes-s | August 29, 2015

The government subsidies are pretty small. Federal so far is about $300 million ($7500 for 40,000 vehicles). State is not that much - maybe another $50M through sales tax and other incentives.

Not sure how much the emissions credits are, or the government subsidies for the gigafactory.

I guess gasoline tax could be considered a subsidy since theoretically that pays for roads, and EVs do not pay it.

In total, it is really not all that much.

rkimball | August 29, 2015

Of possible interest to readers of this thread:

RedShift | August 29, 2015

The oil subsidies are estimated to be between 10 and 50 billion USD per year. By ignoring this fact and beating up on Tesla for the few 100s of million USD it gets as subsidies, the author is killing the main point of his op-Ed.

Just the big five oil companies get around 2.4 billion USD in subsidies.

Also, pollution and climate change are the direct result of these fossil fuel subsidies. At least Tesla is cleaner, and has the chance to get completely clean if the owner decides to go solar.

I'm glad so many on this forum see thru this kind of so-called journalism. Many in this country do not. It's so sad.

Captain_Zap | August 29, 2015

Is it time to unlock this thread?

Opafiets | August 29, 2015

I'd rather read a paper that publishes on both sides of issues rather than one that myopically only posts one side (or worse, posts good on one side and idiots on the other).

On one point I do agree with the writer, the CR piece was a bit over the top, especially given some of their valid criticisms (that are the same as many people, including fanboyz, on here raise).

From an editorial standpoint it was a relatively valid op-ed piece though WSJ should have pointed out that the writer was factually misleading about subsidies.

Lessmog | August 29, 2015

Isn't it a bit rich for the "author" to accuse others of prostitution? What was that "article", if not a blatant attempt to get more "fingers on the mouse" as we might say in my own language - where that has a distinctly dirty connotation ...

I'll just stop there, nothing more to add to previous comments.

Mike83 | August 29, 2015

Years ago when Murdoch took over Dow Jones, WSJ, and has owned Fox News which helps fossil fuel interests I divested all my oil related stocks, and bought solar PV stocks and Tesla. Never looked back and only if I want to lose money would I read the BS they call news.
I did this for ethical motives but it worked out very well economically.
It also changed my politics. I have more wealth because of it and no more worries. They only had to fool me once.

carlk | August 29, 2015

@lennier No need to apologize. We got our Koch's too.

@PhillyGal Absolutely! They should commend that government money that is all repaid worked brilliantly this time. How much contribution Tesla made to US economy and how many jobs it has created? Most of these would go to Germany, Italy or Japan. Somehow they seem to hate this to happen.

proven | August 29, 2015

Charging time is one of the most misunderstood things about a Tesla. It's often one of the first questions I get, and is usually the only ammunition someone has against the car.

Once I explain that in a year of ownership I've never had to wait for a charge and it's usually full whenever I leave the garage they start to realize all the time they spend going to the gas station.

Sure, long trips will make you wait, but how often does that happen (for us, we haven't taken it on a long trip yet)? There's a small part of the population where long drives are routine and an electric car doesn't make sense (yet), but for everyone else it's great.

carlk | August 29, 2015

One thing those people always say is it's a $100K car and rich person's toy but they forgot people have always been buying $100K+ cars. The only difference is the money and job all went to Germany and Italy before Tesla came. They need to be reminded of that.

Linus | August 29, 2015


>>> Cup holders and sun visors are easy to fix. Tesla, why not improve them to shut these nags up.

I am sure they will come OTA with v7.

portia | August 29, 2015


Roamer@AZ USA | August 29, 2015

+1 CarlK

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.

Mahatma Gandhi