First drive: Tesla Model X is an awesome way to spend $132,000
Even having arrived with high expectations, Tesla’s new Model X electric SUV succeeds in a way that is likely to turn to the world of luxury SUVs on its cushy little ear.
It’s powerful, yet whisper quiet. It has has cool, power-lift “falcon wing doors” over the second row. By now, all the world knows that. But taken together, the raft of innovations in Tesla Model X creates something entirely new. Competitors are left looking like they are wallowing in complacency.
From Munich to Tokyo to Detroit, we suspect two predictable events are happening this week. One is a sense that that brilliant but crazy, Mars-loving Elon Musk has gone overboard and that he has built a vehicle with far more complexity than his plant workers will be able to handle. Second, and far more telling will be a sense of “why didn’t we think of that?”
The Model X is loaded — and we’re not being overdramatic here — with features that just seem beyond the pale of anything the traditional auto industry seemed to care about or would be willing to try. There’s so much new stuff that talking about the electric drivetrain and its 250-mile range, which no other automaker can touch at the moment, seems passe.
For instance, the rear seats sit on pedestals, allowing under-seat storage. We’ve seen that on concept cars at auto shows. But when it comes to producing those same cars for the public, major automakers always turn back to their traditional ways.
Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla Motors Inc., introduces the Model X SUV in a ceremony in Fremont, Calif. Marcio Jose Sanchez, AP
Yes, some things about the new Model X borders on overkill. One of the most spectacular elements of the Model S sedan was the way that the door handles present themselves to owners by pulling away from their flush positions. The Model X takes that idea further. The front doors can open as the driver approaches. It’s cool, but it is an answer to a question that no one asked.
With so many amazing elements going on in the Model X when it is standing still, it’s easy to forget that it’s actually a vehicle. It is supposed to move and carry lots of people.
While we were able to thoroughly go over the Model X before its debut Tuesday night here south of San Francisco, our drive of the vehicle was limited to little more than access roads around a sprawling plant and a cone course. That’s not much more driving than a valet parker would experience.
But it was an exhilarating few minutes. The Model X bolts off the line. Your eyes don’t exactly roll back in their sockets when you press the accelerator, but it’s still quite a sensation. There’s no engine roar — just a little whoosh of the wind going by.
It becomes the first electric vehicle being touted for its towing ability — 5,000 pounds.
Tesla says there will be both “comfort tune” and “performance tune” versions of the Model X, but really that refers more to types of tires than any difference in the chassis. One of the great pleasures of the Model X was that even high-tailing around a parking lot, there was none of that annoying noise of tire tread against pavement. Would the same be true on the highway? We’re not sure.
Just sitting in the driver seat of the Model X is a thrill. The panoramic windshield that extends back over your head gives the driver not only a clear view of cars ahead on the road, but passing birds, clouds and aircraft. Drone attack? You’ll see it coming.
Normally, a windshield is nothing to crow about. But, again showing the complexity of this vehicle, the sun visors are works of art — swiveling out and locking in place with magnets.
We could go on and on. It’s going to take months to dissect this vehicle. So here’s our bottom line: A practical car buyer will take a pass on the Model X. It’s so easy to go with a BMW X5 or Lexus RX, luxury SUVs that have been built for years and will be relatively or completely dependable. Yes, maybe a bit boring. They are are nice cars, but they are just cars.
But if you view life as too short to let great things pass you by, if you’re willing to take a risk on breakthrough but relatively untested technology — will those “falcon wing doors” keep working and keep out the rain five years from now? — the Model X is probably for you. It’s an interesting way to spend $132,000.
The Model X isn’t evolutionary like other automakers’ new models. It’s revolutionary. Now the question is: How many car buyers want to join a revolution?
Anyone? Come on don’t be bashful……..
Sales of recreational marijuana began after midnight Thursday in Oregon as some dispensaries opened their doors early moments after it became legal for those 21 and older to purchase pot.
More than 200 of the state’s 345 medical cannabis dispensaries have registered to sell recreational pot.
While anyone over the age of 21 with a valid ID can buy recreational weed, Oregon Medical Marijuana Program patients who are under 21 can still purchase cannabis as long as they have a valid program card.
Consumers are only allowed to buy flowers, seeds and clone plants until the Oregon Liquor Control Commission — which will be regulating legal marijuana sometime next year — irons out its rules.
At Portland’s Shango Premium Cannabis, co-founder Shane McKee said the first sale to an excited customer came about a minute after midnight, with many others waiting.
“It looks like there is about 60-70 in line out front,” he said in a telephone interview shortly after midnight. “They all seem extremely eager.”
That first buyer, Davia Fleming of Portland, said the sales launch was important.
“I was really excited about that,” said Fleming, who uses the drug for medicinal purposes. “It’s the end of a prohibition.”
A shop can sell up to a quarter of an ounce (about seven grams) of cannabis buds or pre-rolled joints at a time. Consumers could technically buy four times that in a day to get to the legal limit you can have in public, which is an ounce.
Davia Fleming, 29, lines up outside of Shango Premium Cannabis in Portland , Ore., on Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2015. Fleming made the store’s first purchase after doors opened at midnight for the start of legal recreational sales of marijuana.
Customers also can purchase four starter plants or an unlimited number of seeds to grow pot at home.
Tinctures, hash, dabs, edibles, topicals or any other processed cannabis products are prohibited. Medical marijuana patients, on the other hand, will still be able to purchase the concentrated items in stores.
Store owners say they’re hopeful they can avoid the shortages and price spikes that followed the start of legal sales last year in Washington and Colorado, the only other states where the drug can now be sold for recreational use. Alaska could begin retail sales next year.
Recreational cannabis purchases are tax free until Jan. 4, when it will be taxed by 25%.
Brothers Cannabis Club also opened its doors at midnight. However, others are abiding by the limited hours set by the Portland City Council on Wednesday. The council voted to limit operating hours for dispensaries to between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. But the city can’t enforce those hours until shops have a license from the city, which won’t be available until December. Until then, they can operate anytime, day or night.
Some stores were trying to lure customers with giveaways and food.
Green Oasis in Sellwood is hosting a block party, featuring the Garcia Birthday Band. Cannacea will have free samples, giveaways and a live band. Leafly, an online review site for pot shops, will have food carts at Bridge City’s two locations, as well as AmeriCannaRX and Natural Rxemedies.
The Oregon Health Authority is requiring participating retail shops to record details of the marijuana sale (type of product, how much, birth date of customer, and date of sale) in order to avoid selling more than the legal limit to the same person in one day. Recreational users can have up to an ounce in public and eight ounces of usable weed in their homes.
Oregon has a robust supply system for marijuana that has supported medical marijuana users and the black market. Companies have invested in massive warehouses in Portland to grow the drug indoors, and southern Oregon has some of the nation’s best conditions for outdoor cultivation of marijuana.
Growers don’t face strict regulations yet, so the supply can more easily flow into retail stores than it did in Washington and Colorado.
I hear matches and zigzag’s are out of stock too.
Last gun store in San Francisco closing over proposed law
Under siege from an increasing amount of regulation from City Hall, “High Bridge Arms” is closing, reports CBS News correspondent John Blackstone.
Steven Alcairo, general manager of the modest storefront in San Francisco’s Mission District, says his business is being pushed out by a proposed city law that would require the store to videotape every gun sale, then turn in the footage to the police department.
Gun buyers already have to fill out a detailed form, go through a background check and a waiting period. But sending a videotape of the purchase to local police strikes Alcairo as one regulation too many.
“When the idea was just announced, the following two weeks, sales just dipped. It was like a ghost town in here; nobody was coming in,” he said.
Mark Farrell, the member of the city’s Board of Supervisors who proposed the legislation, sees it as a necessary move for the safety of residents.
Although “High Bridge Arms” would be the only store that would be affected by the measure as of now, Farrell said the law would also target other stores that were looking to move to the area.
But Alcairo said the legislation would not make the city safer–“not in the very least”– and that San Francisco would be losing a piece of history.
To some relief of gun buyers they won’t have to go far when High Bridge closes — there’s a gun store just south of San Francisco’s city limits.
There is one reason for there to be a video of a gun transaction, Harassment, Plain and simple. Congrats liberal town another step toward total intolerance. And liberals tout themselves as the tolerant spokespeople for the human rights movement.
And people still ask me why I left that bitch…….
Obama on Oregon shooting: “Our thoughts and prayers are not enough”
President Obama was visibly frustrated when he spoke about a shooting at a community college in Oregon Thursday, saying, “our thoughts and prayers are not enough.”
“It’s not enough. It does not capture the heartache and grief and anger that we should feel. And it does nothing to prevent this carnage from being inflicted someplace else in America,” the president said in a statement from the White House briefing room.
He argued, “The notion that gun laws don’t work, or just will make it harder for law-abiding citizens, and criminals will still get their guns – it’s not borne out by the evidence,” indicating that other countries like Great Britain and Australia have been more successful in enacting laws to prevent mass shootings.
“Somebody somewhere will comment and say, ‘Obama politicized this issue,'” the president said. “This is something we should politicize. It is relevant to our common life together, to the body politic.”
“Each time this happens,” he promised, “I’m going to bring this up. Each time this happens I’m going to say that we can actually do something about it, but we’re going to have to change our laws. And this is not something I can do by myself. I’ve got to have a Congress, and I’ve got to have state legislators and governors who are willing to work with me on this.”
Mr. Obama said that for the rest of his tenure, “I hope and pray I don’t have to come out again,” but, he continued, “based on my experience as president, I can’t guarantee that, and that’s terrible to say. And it can change.”
Ten people were killed after a gunman opened fire at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon Thursday. Another seven people were wounded.
In Mr. Obama’s second term, there have been several mass shootings. In fact, the Washington Post compiled data from the website ShootingTracker.com and determined that there has been a mass shooting (where four or more people are shot) during every Sunday-to-Saturday calendar week of Mr. Obama’s second term. The longest spans during which there was no shooting have been seven and eight days, each of which occurred just once.
On May 12, 2013, there were mass shootings in four states: Arizona, New Jersey, California and Louisiana.
“Somehow this has become routine. The reporting is routine, my response here at this podium ends up being routine, the conversation in the aftermath of it, we’ve become numb to this,” Mr. Obama said. “It cannot be this easy for somebody who wants to inflict harm on other people to get his or her hands on a gun.”
The frequency of the shootings has made Mr. Obama familiar with the tragic practice of addressing the nation afterward. He delivered emotional speeches after the shooting of several black churchgoers in Charleston, South Carolina, and when former Rep. Gabby Giffords and several others were killed at a political event in Tucson, to name a few.
“It’s fair to say,” Mr. Obama said, “that anybody who does this has a sickness in their minds.” But he said that while the U.S. is not the only country where people have mental health issues, it is the only country that sees mass shootings every few months.
His strongest push for gun control legislationcame after a gunman shot and killed 20 children and six teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, but his efforts were largely stymied by Congress.
He pushed lawmakers and the American people on the issue again Thursday, and said he would continue to do so.
“This is a political choice that we make, to allow this to happen every few months in America. We collectively are answerable to those families who lose their loved ones because of our inaction,” he said. “Each time this happens I’m going to bring this up. Each time this happens I’m going to say that we can actually do something about it but we’re going to have to change our laws and this is not something I can do by myself.”
This president is a knee jerk type person especially with gun issues and incidents. To be honest all these shootings are not going to help 2nd amendment people like me make our case. And we do need some answers for these idiots killing like they are.
But it is too bad that he does not take such a serious stance with other issues like telling police to use restraint while rioters and looters are tearing a town apart, Then inviting people like Al Sharptongue to be a guest in the white house after he leads a parade of marchers screaming “FUCK THE POLICE” and “KILL THE PIGS”.
It is no secret How I feel about this president and what I feel he has done to this country and his sometimes overly passive stances about some things too. Then there is the obvious soft spot for the Muslim people and it seems for the violent ones towards America too.
A mother is stunned after she says she found ammunition in her son’s Toys “R” Us package.
Jasemin Stephenson says she ordered a “Minecraft Foam Diamond Sword” from the toy store’s website last week.
When the package arrived on Tuesday in Virginia Beach, Stephenson says she found 800 rounds of 9mm ammunition in the box along with the sword.
“It is very shocking. You are ordering from a Toys “R” Us store, you don’t expect to get ammo in a box of toys,” Stephenson said.
She feels that her child’s safety was at risk. “Very irresponsible, definitely on their part,” she added.
“We are in the process of looking into this matter with our shipping carrier to determine how this may have occurred,” Kathleen Waugh, a Toys “R” Us spokeswoman, told USA TODAY Network in an email.
Child safety at risk????
I have never been that lucky……..
Mike Halstead, a 35-year veteran of law enforcement, has retired from his role as chief of police for Surf City, North Carolina, less than two weeks after calling the Black Lives Matter movement “an American-born terrorist group.”
The police chief announced his retirement on Tuesday afternoon during an emergency town meeting held to discuss personnel concerns in the wake of an open letter published on Facebook earlier this month by Mr. Halstead, a white cop who held the town’s top cop post for the past 13 years.
In his 662-word social media diatribe, Mr. Halstead said that the Black Lives Matter movement was “nothing more than an American born terrorist group brought on by the lie of the hands up don’t shoot during the criminal thug Michael Brown incident.” He claimed that BLM activists have been calling for “the murders of a race of people and a group of public servants,” and said he’s instructed his officers to “be vigilant” and take appropriate action when necessary.
“If that means shoot a thug, then do it and answer for it while you are still alive not dead,” he wrote from his personal Facebook account. The Sept. 3 post has since disappeared from his page, but archived versions indicate Mr. Halstead also blamed the Obama administration and civil rights leader Al Sharpton, among others, for creating a “race problem” in America.
The NAACP and other civil rights groups were expected to meet this week to discuss taking action against Mr. Halstead, but the police chief abruptly announced his own retirement on Tuesday afternoon during an emergency meeting.
Town officials promptly accepted the chief’s resignation and agreed to give him 60 days severance. Local media reported that he had originally planned to retire later this year.
In a statement afterwards, Mr. Halstead said he was “thrown under the bus” for expressing his First Amendment rights and said he had never intended to offend anyone.
Town Manager Larry Bergman told reporters that the Facebook post was in reference to the recent slaying of a law enforcement officer in Texas, and that Mr. Halstead “felt pretty passionate about it.” Mr. Bergman said previously that Surf City lacked any rules governing social media usage for employees, but on Tuesday he said that Mr. Halstead’s posting had violated a policy concerning how the chief is supposed to present himself.
Maj. Ron Shanahan will serve as the cop’s interim replacement, according to local reports. Meanwhile, supporters of Mr. Halstead stood outside the Surf City Police Department building on Wednesday morning to rally for the former chief.
“I was appalled to be honest with you,” local business owner Dorothy Royal said of Mr. Halstead’s ousting, local network WWAY reported. “This whole thing has happened so quick that nobody, none of the citizens had time to grasp what was going on.”
“I think he was venting frustrations and that’s the problem we have today,” Ms. Royal said. ” Nobody is hearing the law enforcement side.”
“If it had to do with something that the NAACP was getting involved and they were doing this to prevent any further problems, that’s not OK,” Ms. Royal said. “He deserved his right to explain. He deserved his right to talk to the people of this town.”
Surf City is situated on the Atlantic Ocean northeast of Wilmington and boasted a population of less than 2,000 as of the 2010 Census Bureau report. The Black Lives Matter movement came to light following the death of Trayvon Martin in 2013 and gained momentum last year after Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, was shot by a white cop in Ferguson, Missouri.
Here is a copy of his post:
Open letter from a Police Chief ,
this Black Lives Matter group is nothing more than an American born terrorist group brought on by the lie of the hands up don’t shoot during the criminal thug Michael Brown incident. The FBI and other Government Law Enforcement groups need to step up and put a stop to this. The Government and blacks would not tolerate the White Supremacist group to march through the streets and call for the murders of a race of people and a group of public servants. I agree there is a race problem in this country. It is not brought on by police officer doing their sworn duty, it is brought on by the government, the President and his cronies Al Sharpton, who is a criminal tax evader (but has the support of our so called President), Jessi Jackson, Eric Holder and that ignorant S.O.B. Farrakhan who should be charged with solicitation for murder, lord knows a white man would be arrested for the same actions of idiot Farakhan. I am sure there are many hard working Black people who will agree with me.
I have been a Police Officer for 35 years. I do not judge anyone by the color of their skin, but by their actions. A criminal is a criminal whether a police officer or any other profession. I will not state statistics because black lives matter do not care or believe proven statistics. I put allot of the blame for these cop murders on the media and the way they report police related shootings. There is no need to list or even state the race of a person shot by the police. It is more important to wait for the facts and report those. But and a big but that does not make money for these greedy media ass holes. When a black thug is killed by the police they are all over it as is Mr. Barack Obama. However when a police officer white, black or any race is murdered for doing his job the media is short with its reporting or not at all. When a white person is killed by a black officer you hear nothing. Has our so called President spoke publicly about these murders of police officers by blacks, HELL NO he has not. Step up Mr. President, or step down because we do not need you. Has our Attorney General spoke against these murders, no of course not because she was appointed by Barack Obama. Now let me say this, and this is not a threat but common knowledge.
I have instructed my officers to be vigilant, if threatened take appropriate action. If that means shoot a thug, then do it and answer for it while you are still alive not dead. Law Enforcement is fed up with this murderous society who want to take out those who protect and serve. Imagine if all law enforcement shut down for just 1 day. There would be murders, rapes, robberies, you name it. America wake up, all of you black, white, Mexican whatever you need the police, we do not need you. End this Black Lives Matter bull shit and start a movement that all lives matter. As for the New Black Panther movement who wants to kill whites and cops, go for it, we are ready for you. You take one of us and there will be 100 who will step up and end you. This letter is not meant to offend anyone, just the feelings of a man who has spent the last 35 years of his life serving and protecting, for what so a thug can take it or to be treated as a criminal by the very people I swore to protect. Let’s get this around folks so maybe our President and the media will get a wakeup call. Be safe all of my Brothers and Sisters in blue, not white, black, yellow or brown BLUE.
I feel a very honest post, And there is no hate talk just heartfelt honesty. But it does not fit in the agenda of so many people wanting something for nothing. He was going to retire anyway, so not a big deal I guess, But I again say Facebook is not your friend when it comes to your career and wanting to talk honestly.
Especially Guvment workers.