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Congress to Toyota owners: Be afraid, be very afraid!

Posted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:45 pm
by MSI
Feb 23, 2010: the following is a review of articles on Politico and by the Associated Press:Toyota recalls won't 'totally' fix sudden surges
Throw the following on top of the irresponsible letter from Congress from yesterday and we've got ourselves a Wide Open Throttle Toyota Witch Hunt!
Congress started the hearing today with the following witness:
Rhonda Smith, of Sevierville, Tenn., said her Lexus raced out of control to speeds up to 100 miles an hour, and that nothing she did to try to stop it worked - including braking and shifting into neutral. "I prayed to God to help me," she said, fighting back tears.
"After six miles, God intervened" and slowed the car, Smith said. She said she was finally able to pull off the road onto a median and turn off the engine. She said it took a long time for Toyota to respond to her complaints and even then it was dismissive.

So apparently the first message from Congress is for Toyota owners to be afraid, be very afraid. You apparently need a higher force to intervene and safely stop your vehicle! If we use the same "illogic" which drives the "something must be happening in the electronics system" mentality; if something was happening, what arbitrary event made it start? and then what arbitrary event made it decide to stop? There is a serious flaw in the logic for the 'gremlin in the electronics' story!) Perhaps a better explanation for her story is that she finally took her foot off the gas pedal (after thinking for 6 miles it was the brake pedal?) The brakes on all modern cars can stop a vehicle in Wide Open Throttle!. Be sure to also see the Car&Driver testing where a WOT vehicle travelling 70 & 100 mph was stopped while still in WOT with braking

Objective scientific inquiry vs. Eyewitness testimony: Memory is malleable and can easily be influenced and corrupted."Truth and reality, when seen through the filter of our memories, are not objective facts but subjective, interpretive realities. We interpret the past, correcting ourselves, adding bits and pieces, deleting uncomplimentary or disturbing recollections, sweeping, dusting, tidying things up....precise memory suddenly becomes crucial in the event of a crime or an accident. Small details assume enormous importance".
Ms. Smith may believe and swear that she was on the brake, but then why didn't the brakes slow and stop the vehicle? Only through an objective scientific inquiry can the reality of the situation be determined.

Next up was David W. Gilbert, PhD., Professor of Automotive Technology, Southern Illinois University Carbondale. [The only Gilbert listed on the university website is David G. Gilbert, Professor of Psychology. The Division of Automotive Technology falls under the College of Arts and Sciences and a search of the website contains no information on any David W. Gilbert]. Gilbert said he found a flaw in the electronic systems in the car that “would allow abnormalities to occur” – abnormalities that should stop errant acceleration but did not. The finding took him just three-and-a-half hours. He said such abnormalities are not present in other vehicles he has tested. {NOTE: Gilbert also appeared on ABC.News and they have posted a video (Going back for a moment to the irresponsible letter sent from Congress to Toyota, wasn't the small sample size of the Exponent testing one of their major issues? Yet they don't mind small samples when it is in support of their witch hunt?)

Next they lined up Sean Kane, the president of Safety Research and Strategies,who told committie members that “the evidence suggests very strongly” that there’s more going on than what Toyota claims.

[NOTE: The Gilbert Report was prepared for Safety Research and Strategies. And Sean Kane's Safety Research and Strategies report was funded by "five attorneys, who sponsored some of our research into Sudden Unintended Acceleration in Toyota vehicles: Donald Slavik of Habush, Habush & Rottier; Edgar F. “Hike” Heiskell III of Bailey & Glasser, LLP; John H. Gomez of the Gomez Law Firm; R. Graham Esdale Jr. of Beasley, Allen, Methvin, Portis & Miles PC; and Terrence McCartney of Rheingold, Valet, Rheingold, Shkolnik & McCartney LLP". So the whole charade is a plaintiff's presentation without benefit of cross-examination. Couldn't the govenment afford to hire INDEPENDENT EXPERTS??? The two "experts" overlap and are not independent]. Not particularly an objective scientific presentation.

This is the best Congress can do? YOU HAVE GOT To BE KIDDING!! The hearing is nothing but a pathetic political hack job!
Read more at Politico and Associated Press :Toyota recalls won't 'totally' fix sudden surges

Re: Congress to Toyota owners: Be afraid, be very afraid!

Posted: Wed Feb 24, 2010 10:38 am
by MSI
Feb 23, 2020: Gilbert also made the rounds on ABC News and the following information on Gilbert is from in an article entitled:
Analysis: ABC News report shouldn't panic Toyota drivers
"In a statement issued by Toyota on February 23, 2010, the day after the ABC report and the day Gilbert was to testify before a congressional hearing, the automaker revealed its recent correspondence with Gilbert. Gilbert first approached the company on February 16 with a different scenario about how acceleration could be triggered. Toyota explained that this scenario would in fact trigger a fault. Gilbert then came up with a different test, which was used in the video demonstration."
"We are not accusing Mr. Gilbert or Safety Research & Strategies of any wrongdoing, nor are we trying to exonerate Toyota. Gilbert may in fact be right, although there is no conclusive evidence to support that at this time. It's also very possible that, in spite of Toyota's claims that there is no software problem contributing to unintended/sudden acceleration, exactly the opposite is true. "
"We recommend to our readers that they take all such claims from either side with a great deal of skepticism. This story is far from over, and it is not clear at this point what the outcome will be."
see the story: Analysis: ABC News report shouldn't panic Toyota drivers
Here's the ABC News report with links to Gilbert's testing video: ABC News Alleges Toyota's Problem Isn't Pedals, and Isn't Fixed

Re: Congress to Toyota owners: Be afraid, be very afraid!

Posted: Wed Feb 24, 2010 1:28 pm
by MSI
Feb 24, 2010: And in keeping with the scare tactics of this whole witch hunt, today, Ray Lahood, the 16th U.S. Secretary of Transportation, continues to be a lightening rod for disinformation and confusion about the Toyota recalls.
A question from Rep. Edolphus Towns, D-N.Y., chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform to Secretary Ray LaHood on behalf all of those Toyota owners and drivers: Are the cars safe to drive?
LaHood replied "We have listed every Toyota that's up for recall" on the Transportation Department Web site, LaHood said. "I want anybody who has one of those cars to take it to the dealer and make sure it gets fixed." LaHood said those vehicles on the recall list posted on his department's Website,, "are not safe."
Please see the important points which have been left out of the whole Toyota discussion
See Ray LaHood: Some Toyotas 'not safe' and the Associated Press coverage of the hearings today Toyota CEO apologizing for recall, accidents

Re: Congress to Toyota owners: Be afraid, be very afraid!

Posted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 4:01 pm
by MSI
The Faculty page for the Division of Automotive Technology of the College of Arts and Sciences Southern Illinois University Carbondale has now bee added (or updated?). It was created on Feb 25, 2010. Prior to that date the page came up 'Under Construction'.It now includes the following information on David W. Gilbert
Gilbert.jpg (89.07 KiB) Viewed 5542 times