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Gee, why the sudden shortage of used cars?

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Carlos Osorio / AP / File

(Read caption) Vehicles turned in during the Cash for Clunkers program are seen at the Riverside Auto Mall, Saturday, Sept. 12, 2009 in Marquette, Mich. Used car prices are on the rise – could it have anything to do with all the cars that were destroyed during the Cash for Clunkers program?

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The WSJ reports that used car prices are soaring. “The price of used cars is just crazy right now,” said Adam Lee, chairman of Maine dealer Lee Auto Malls. His dealership is paying hefty sums for cars it normally might not purchase to have a full inventory. “It can be a piece of junk—cars we used to pay $2,000 or $2,500 for, we are now paying $5,200 to $5,500,” Mr. Lee said.

The WSJ story meanders around for a cause but never mentions Cash for Clunkers, the most cockamamie scheme for deliberate destruction in our time. Some 600,000 cars were destroyed after being bought by the government, for a total per taxpayer expenditure of $24,000 each. Then we wonder why used car prices soar!

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