Charlie Chaplin, The Gold Rush (1925)Enlarge Photo
Mega-bonuses have dried up, McMansions are going empty, and three-car garages and credit cards can no longer be obtained on request. Jeez, this recession sure doesn't feel as much fun as Fox, CNN and the New York Times make it out to be.
Like us, you may have always dreamed of owning a new BMW, or Benz, or maybe even a Tesla. Dreams are nice, aren't they? Like ponies and cupcakes. They are not practical road maps to the future, however, and as the adults in this room, it's our sworn duty to calmly suggest you consider a Plan B at this moment in history. If you're in the market for a new car--and some of you still are--it's the perfect time to maximize the value in your next car while minimizing the chance your children will have to be homeschooled in its back seat.
The millions of new-car shoppers out there are in luck. The cut-rate prices on the current Golden Age of New Cars means you can have your pick of beautiful, capable, safe and relatively inexpensive vehicles without the usual ConEdison-level sticker shock. Cars like the Hyundai Genesis, Honda Accord and Ford Flex give off the sparks normally reserved for much pricier machines, if not the full-tilt image makeover.
So while our men and women in Washington keep giving us reason to use "teabagging" in polite conversation, let us recommend to you these nine "Plan B" cars, so you can hang on to your remaining dignity while the meltdown rolls on: