I won't lower myself to insults or hate email's. Unlike you I will not call you names or attack you for having an opinion. What I will do is explain the fundamental attraction to Harley-Davidson that you didn't see in your attack on those of us within the, lets see if I get this right, "pagan cult religion for brain dead trend humping fashion lemmings"... Very colorful attack by the way.
First Harley-Davidson isn't built for breakneck speeds because for the most part, those of us who ride them are not out to race from one point to the next. For us its not about being the first person at the destination, its about leaving a day or so early, taking back roads and enjoying the journey. Freedom to chose means if you prefer to buy a Kawasaki Ninja, curl up into an uncomfortable cramped little ball on top of it and race through the curves to get where you are going, well that's your prerogative. I prefer to sit up right, lean back, relax and enjoy the views along the trip. That is my prerogative.
Harley-Davidson isn't about being "in fashion", heck one could argue that its about the farthest you can get from the "in crowd". Sure it's become fad in recent years to buy and ride Harley-Davidson's. You may point out that there are a bunch of yuppie riders out there trying to fit into the biker persona because they saw it on television and thought it was cool. Or maybe they got caught up in the custom chopper craze and decided a Harley was the cheaper fix. Whatever their reasons for buying a Harley-Davidson, they have the right and freedom to do so. Just as you have a right and the freedom to criticize them for it. I find that most R.U.B.'s (Rich Urban Bikers) purchase their bike, then put it in the garage and wipe it with a diaper. They don't get it any more than you do. But who cares how they spend their money? Not me. I also don't care how you spend yours.
Do I worship my Harley-Davidson? My girlfriend might tell you I do, but for me I see it as more of an escape. When I ride, I am a part of the bike and the road. But more than that I am a part of my environment. Sitting in a car, you watch the world pass by your windows like you watch the television. You are not feeling the crisp air, smelling the pine trees, you are not "experiencing the ride" you are watching it.
Sport bikes and motorcycles with enough torque to leave the riders internal organs bunched into his hind quarters are built for the adrenaline junkie. They are designed for folks who are all about your speed and power. But on the open road, where there are laws against that kind of speed and where those of us on motorcycles are at a notable disadvantage to those wrapped in a couple tons of steel during a collision, who cares about getting to the grave yard faster? If you ride your 1995 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R's 599cc in-line four bike and I ride my 2006 Harley-Davidson Dyna Wide glide 1450cc and we trip across country, you may beat me to all the rest stops, but I won't have to stop as often as you. And while you are at the destination tapping your foot and laughing at me for "Easy Riding" I will be enjoying my trip and seeing some of that beautiful county you claim to love so much but blazed right past in a blur of death defying speed and performance. That's where you and I truly differ my friend. You claim to love your country, but sit in judgment over its people and race past its beauty. You point your finger at what you see as "Wrong" or un-American and nit pick at one of its best known companies. Well enjoy your freedom to do that, enjoy your freedom to speech and to sling mud at other Americans because you don't agree with their choices. I chose the moral high ground. And I ride my Harley there ;)
Print that on your website.
FYI My website is http://freelyx.com/
To which I replied
“I won't lower myself to insults or hate email's. Unlike you I will not call you names or attack you for having an opinion.”
You don’t have to, sir.
Your kind and those you support / associate with have already done that for you and they’ve been attacking anyone different than they are for several decades now. They did this because they thought that there would be no reproach to their behavior, that they could get away with it and that no one would ever stand up to them for doing so.
I’m only happy to prove them wrong.
The humorous thing is that while Harley owners sure can dish
out the insults they apparently can’t take any criticism at all in return often
resorting to whining and complaining when the tables are turned and they are no
longer having the fun at other people’s expense that they once thought was their
God given right to have. I find that hilarious for a group of people who are
supposedly so rough and tough. The truth is that very few Harley owners are
rough and tough, instead they are thin skinned wannabes and whiners. Who would
have thought that under the paper thin veneer of leather, chains, studs, barb
wire and thorns that there existed so much stale old
cream puff ...
“What I will do is explain the fundamental attraction to Harley-Davidson that you didn't see in your attack on those of us within the, lets see if I get this right, "pagan cult religion for brain dead trend humping fashion lemmings"... Very colorful attack by the way.”
Attack? It’s not an attack, sir. It’s an observation based on a decade and a half of experience with you and your insipid kind. Harley Davidson is not a motorcycle manufacturer … they failed at that. Harley Davidson made the transition from failed motorcycle manufacturer to a fashion and lifestyle provider when Willie G. and his 12 Disciples bought the company from AMF in the early 1980’s. When the buyout happened, HD was already 20 years behind the rest of the world in engineering, technology and manufacturing capability. When faced with the dilemma that Harley would never, ever catch up with the rest of the world, Willie G. did an incredibly smart thing … realizing that HD could not compete with the rest of the world class motorcycle manufacturers in any way or form, he also knew that HD could no longer sell its outdated models and remain in business unless HD somehow reinvented itself to where it would have no direct competition in the market. Harley Davidson needed to find a market niche where it would be protected from both competition and comparison, a market niche where it could reign supreme and they did exactly that.
How did they do that?
Willie G. and those in control of HD morphed the company from a failing motorcycle manufacturer into a lifestyle provider and a fashion empire. Only Harley Davidson operates its own line of restaurants and has specialty outlets for its products which even it laughably labels as “boutiques.” The marketing quote is “It started out as a Motor Company. It became a family.” What they fail to say is that the family became a religion filled with ignorant zealots.
Harley Davidson is a pagan religion whether you wish to acknowledge that or not. That much is a given and easily proven. Harley Davidson refers to its system of beliefs as “the Faith.” Harley Davidson refers to its customer base as “The Faithful”; “The Brotherhood” and “The Sisterhood” depending on which aspect of its customer base it is referring to. The Brotherhood and Sisterhood (note capitalization) are ecumenical terms used by the church when referring to the clergy and the nunnery. It is interesting that Harley Davidson should adopt religious terms in reference to its customer base. What other company do you know that has its customers swearing allegiance for life to it? What other company do you know who has customers that name their first born children after the company or the company’s products? What other company do you know where the customers ritualistically scar their bodies with the shape and design of the company logo, allowing their selves to be branded like so much lackadaisical cattle just so they can claim to belong to a large herd of like-minded lost souls?
The HD logo is called a "brand" and it is a brand in more ways than one. In the old west during the 19th century, ranchers would use red hot irons called “branding irons” to apply their “brands” or identifying marks to the herds of cattle that they owned. In order to do this, the cowboys had to hold the cattle down and often tie them up in order to apply the red hot brand to the animal, searing their flesh and marking their property for all to see. Today, Harley owners willingly submit their bodies to being branded with the logo though they use tattoo parlors and ink artists instead of red hot branding irons and hired cowpokes though the end result is the same regardless of the means of getting there. What this means is that anyone with a Harley tattoo has willingly accepted the role of being property of the Motor Company and since no cow in their right mind would ever willingly get branded, this also means that Harley owners with the HD logo on their body are, by definition, dumber than a cow since even a cow is smart enough not to stand still and get branded if it has a choice in the matter. Some Harley owners actually pay good money in order to be painfully branded for life.
Harley Davidson is a pagan religion worshipped by the lowest common denominator in our great society, that much is not only true but also easily proven with very little effort or research. The sad thing is that not only do you choose to support that pagan religion but you also choose to be a part of it. Remember, you are judged not only by the company that you keep but also by the company that you support.
“First Harley-Davidson isn't built for breakneck speeds because for the most part, those of us who ride them are not out to race from one point to the next.”
Those of you who ride Harley Davidsons are out to get noticed when you wouldn't be noticed on anything else. There is very little "riding" involved when it comes to rumbling around on a HD and a whole lot of "posing" and "posturing" instead. I didn’t buy my sportbike because it was fast. I bought my sportbike because it was capable of extreme performance and because it is capable of extreme performance it is, by definition, incredibly safe at much lower speeds than it was designed to max out at. Let me try to explain it to you this way ... if I ride a bike that is capable of achieving 165mph on the top end and it comes standard with brakes and a suspension designed to operate at that speed for extended periods of time, then how much safer is it at lower speeds when the massive safety equipment that it is built with isn't having to work anywhere near its capacity?
Performance is a
multi-faceted aspect that includes top end speed, zero to sixty acceleration,
quarter mile acceleration, handling, braking, weight and even fuel economy.
While I own a bike that has 115 horsepower at the crank, I find that performance is something that tends to
lend itself to an overall operational regimen. I bought my sportbike because I
felt that it was the best and most safest model to get me where I was going and
back home again in one piece. Now, as far as rushing around at breakneck speeds,
the throttle works both ways, sir. Sportbikes can go fast; they don’t
automatically go fast everywhere they go. A throttle requires human intervention
to work and since my sportbike is powered by a high tech, computer controlled, EFI four cylinder engine and not a solid fuel rocket, acceleration can be
manually set and speed adjusted to the prevailing limits as set forth by local
law or current conditions.
Harley Davidson’s aren’t built for breakneck speeds because HD specifically tunes their outdated engines for a particular sound. Sound is a byproduct of performance, performance is not a byproduct of sound. When you tune your engines for sound you are by definition not tuning them for power or performance. This is the biggest clue to the fact that Harley does not build motorcycles but rather builds big, noisy, shiny props for a make-believe lifestyle. Harley’s aren’t built for breakneck speed because they are built to pose on. Everything about a Harley is designed to pose on, from the styling over engineering, fashion over safety and sound over performance aspects that have been adopted by the Motor Company.
“For us its not about being the first person at the destination, its about leaving a day or so early, taking back roads and enjoying the journey. Freedom to chose means if you prefer to buy a Kawasaki Ninja, curl up into an uncomfortable cramped little ball on top of it and race through the curves to get where you are going, well that's your prerogative. I prefer to sit up right, lean back, relax and enjoy the views along the trip. That is my prerogative.”
And what makes you think that a Ninja or other sportbike can’t be ridden slowly? Since performance has been absent from Harley Davidson’s model lineup since the early 1960’s then it's easy to understand how you and those like you can’t really be expected to be familiar with the concept of “performance.” After all, the concept of “performance” has been bred almost completely out of the Harley Davidson line and it only exists at all because the Germans were talked into giving the inbred line of models an infusion of new blood with the introduction of the Porsche built Revolution engine. I wonder how it feels to make fun of imports for so many decades then to realize that the strongest, baddest Harley made is powered by an import engine? Oh, can you not hear the clamor in the pews as the Faithful cried out to Pope Willie G. at the sacrilege that they perceived in the Faith? It is rich indeed.
Why can’t you ride a sportbike slow and enjoy the scenery or the smells of the road? Why do Harley owners always think that sportbikes are built to only go fast? I guess it’s because “performance” has been absent in the Harley stable for nearly five decades now and the fact that since Harley owners are constantly surrounded by old, outdated and often obsolete technology that they don’t understand just what computers, fuel injection and a host of other modern innovations can do to what was once a wild ride. I ride my sportbike slow and I enjoy the same things that you do for a whole lot less cash than you do (which often, I’ve found, makes my pleasure all the more greater than yours). I ride a 2004 Honda CBR600RR. It has a compact, liquid cooled inline four cylinder motor making 115 horsepower at the crank (or about twice the power that your engine makes using less than half of your volumetric displacement). My bike is kitten smooth in traffic and stable at high speeds. My bike is fuel injected and controlled by a very advanced computer system that controls all aspects of engine operation. My sportbike starts with the push of a button and idles like a purring kitten in traffic. I have no problem riding my bike at any range of RPM, from 1000 RPM all the way to 15,500 RPM (the factory redline of my engine). A computer controls my EFI system which responds at all ranges of the riding regime, constantly adjusting for best performance at all speeds and all atmospheric conditions.
Now, as for riding position, I don’t bend over and lay on the tank, I sit up in the saddle. Maybe not in the OB-GYN fashion that you do with my legs spread wide on some highway bars but the position is closer to the upright one that you enjoy than, say, to a sprinter on the starting line. I find my riding position to be far more comfortable than yours because it not only allows me to take in all the scenery of the ride (and the smells) but to react to danger far quicker than you can. The difference between my bike and your bike is that my bike can do everything that your bike does and a whole lot more that your bike cannot. My bike also does all of this for several thousand dollars less, perhaps even as much as half or a third of what you paid for your bike.
The point is that I paid $7500 for a bike that weighs a little over 400 pounds wet, has a six speed transmission, adjustable front and rear suspension, triple disc multi-piston callipered brakes, advanced materials like aluminum used in its construction, a ram air system, 8 fuel injectors, a PGM-FI system which feeds the hungry 599cc engine and a family heritage that is descended from a long history of world champion winners. I paid $7500 for a bike that has 115 horsepower at the crank, a bike that can sprint to sixty miles an hour in just over two seconds, a bike that can blaze down the quarter mile in just over ten seconds stock and has a top speed in excess of 165mph. All of this and it idles like a kitten in traffic, purrs along with the rest of the flow of cages and riders, is whisper quiet, requires little if any maintenance and at the end of the day in commuter duty it returns over 42 miles per gallon fuel economy.
How much did you pay for your bike, sir?
I bet it was more than I paid for my
bike and the point is for that extra money, what did you get that I didn’t get?
Did you get an outdated steel frame? Wush-mush handling? Brakes that a bicycle
wouldn’t be sold with? A transmission better suited to a field tractor than a
motorcycle? An air cooled V-twin with over a liter of displacement and less than
60 horsepower at the crank? A carburetor to feed it? A dry weight of 700 to 900
pounds without rider? How much more did you pay for your bike and how much less
did you get? I bet you paid a lot more for your bike than I did and the sad
thing is that your bike is actually worth about half to a third of what my bike
is worth based solely on engineering and technology.
The price that you paid for your bike was not dictated by superior engineering
or high technology, it was dictated by image alone. The extra money that you paid for your bike was for the right to
display the HD logo and for the privilege of riding one of their products
and being seen on it. The
extra money that you paid for your low tech, outdated bike was used to finance
your legal right to ride and be seen on what can arguably be considered the
biggest piece of junk still made on the planet.
“Harley-Davidson isn't about being "in fashion", heck one could argue that its about the farthest you can get from the "in crowd". Sure it's become fad in recent years to buy and ride Harley-Davidson's. You may point out that there are a bunch of yuppie riders out there trying to fit into the biker persona because they saw it on television and thought it was cool. Or maybe they got caught up in the custom chopper craze and decided a Harley was the cheaper fix. Whatever their reasons for buying a Harley-Davidson, they have the right and freedom to do so. Just as you have a right and the freedom to criticize them for it.”
If Harley Davidson isn't about being "in fashion" then can you please explain why Harley Davidson is the only motorcycle (and I use the term very loosely) manufacturer on the planet to open its own series of "boutiques" where everything BUT HD motorcycles are sold?
I’m sorry to inform you that you are not only delusional but that you really are kidding yourself if you truly believe what you just said. Harley Davidson has everything to do about fashion and very little about motorcycles anymore. Hell! There's even a whole series of Harley Barbie action figures and if Barbie isn't about fashion, I don't know what is! Harley Davidson is a lifestyle provider, sir, even the Motor Company proudly lays claim to that particular bit of nonsense and abject silliness. Harley Davidson fulfills fantasies and makes dreams come true through their own home-grown make believe fairy tale. They design their products so that the products fit a particular need in their customer base. If you provide a pre-made lifestyle to a customer base and the customer base accepts and adopts that particular lifestyle as their own then they are, by definition, not living a life of their very own but rather they are living someone else’s of a life.
Harley owners who sign up for the “Harley experience”
aren’t signing up for an individual experience but a catered experience. When
you adopt the “Harley experience” you are foregoing having any original
experience of your own and accepting what the Motor Company gives you instead.
You lose your individuality and become a follower who is taught that thinking
that you are an individual is far more important than actually being an
individual. In fact, individualism is frowned upon in the ranks of Harley
Davidson’s customers. Oh, they say that they are individuals but they come off
as more of an ugly train wreck between the cast of “Hee-Haw” and the cast of the
movie “The Stepford Wives.” The simple truth is that if you are a pre-packaged
lifestyle not of your own creation then most people call that “pretending.”
Harley has made a financial killing off of supplying a redneck fairy tale and of
providing the material goods necessary to role-play the experience of that fairy
“I find that most R.U.B.'s (Rich Urban Bikers) purchase their bike, then put it in the garage and wipe it with a diaper. They don't get it any more than you do. But who cares how they spend their money? Not me. I also don't care how you spend yours.”
I’m sorry that you are so utterly confused about the company that you support. You seem to be well written however well written doesn’t necessarily mean “deep thinker.” Contrary to popular opinion, I really do "get it", sir, which is why I don’t own a Harley Davidson product, never have and never will. I understand the full history of the Motor Company rather than the wonderful fairy tale that the Motor Company has spun through their marketing lies over the years. I understand just how pathetic Harley Davidson has been in the hundred plus years that they have been around. I understand that for the first fifty years of their life they were always followers, never leaders. Indian proved this time and time again and when the first Sportster was merely a copy (right down to the shifter being on the wrong side) of European bikes at the time, you have to realize that Harley has become a legend in following other legends.
I understand that for the next ten years they substituted styling for engineering and began to lose at major competition events when the Japanese and European imports started appearing on our shores. When HD refused to embrace new technology, they simply had the rules changed in their favor and still they lost and lost and lost. During this time, HD made so many poor business and management decisions that the company started a long, steep downwards spiral into obvious financial ruin. Things got so bad for HD that AMF, a company known best for making bowling balls, had to step in and clean up their mess by taking over the company and bailing them out. The AMF years may not have been memorable to HD owners but AMF gave Harley the Evolution engine which took it from a 20,000 mile engine to a 100,000 mile engine almost overnight thus proving that a company that is famous for making bowling balls knows more about manufacturing motorcycles than Harley Davidson does.
In the 1980’s, HD was bought out yet
again; this time it was from AMF by Willie G. and his 12
Disciples with the catchphrase of “The Eagle Soars Alone.” This, however, is a
mistranslation of what was said when the real truth is that the words uttered at
this historic event were really “The Turkey Hobbles Along.”
In order to survive, Harley had to ask for trade relief from the US government.
It could have had help from the Japanese manufacturers who offered Harley
Davidson loans in order to keep its creditors from closing in and closing it
down but Harley refused the help of the Japanese and instead decided to punish
not only the Japanese but also the hard working Americans that it purports to
represent. It did this by asking for a needless and unnecessary trade
tariff. While the trade tariff helped
Harley Davidson in the short run, it set up the Japanese manufacturers on
American shores and thus in the long run, Harley Davidson had made yet another
bad business / management decision that would ultimately affect the way it did
business for decades to come. Under Harley's actions, the Japanese
established factories on our shores and began building bikes over here.
These bikes, built on American shores, would be exempt from any future childish
tariff if Harley should feel the need to get down on its knees and beg Uncle Sam
for help again. Harley's short sighted greed and need led to what can
arguably be considered its own personal road to destruction. While it was
(supposedly) using the tariff to get back on its feet, what it was really doing
was forcing its competition to not only move in closer but to move in
practically next door to it. In military as well as business strategy that
is universally considered a very, very dumb idea but then again, Harley has
never really been known for doing anything that halfway resembled being smart,
now have they?
Harley then spent the next twenty years of its life turning a once struggling motorcycle manufacturing company into a hugely successful fashion and lifestyle provider where image became the most powerful selling point of the breed and where the customer base was chosen from the lowest common denominator in society (i.e. dullards that even the worst salesman in the world could use Jedi mind-tricks on). Harley Davidson used to stand for freedom, for rugged individualism and for going against society and its norms but the kind of people that Harley once represented were not the kind of people that would ultimately be able to keep the Motor Company in business let alone allow it to prosper. No, Harley died the great death for it became and adopted the ways of the very type of person, the very strata of society for which it had once stood against. Harley Davidson didn’t die, it was absorbed and reprogrammed and turned into the antithesis of what it once stood for. Once, decades before, when a Harley owner broke down on the road, chances were that the most knowledgeable person for miles around was the Harley owner himself. Now, people didn’t have to understand anything about their bike. There was red carpet customer service, HD dealerships in every town and city and after hours towing services. A Harley used to require a good amount of intelligence and rugged individualism to own. No more because Harley now catered to people of low mechanical intelligence and who needed to project the aura of rugged individualism without actually breaking a sweat in order to do so. Harley Davidson, in the period of just a few short years, went from a company whose products required you to earn a reputation on your own to a company that allowed you to buy that very same reputation without all the hard work required to earn it. Thus, Harley transferred its marketing strategy from the average American to high society America. Doctors, lawyers, dentists, and surgeons all lined up to play outlaw on the weekends and they lined up for months on end to buy what they perceived as being "tough." They had the disposable income to catapult Harley Davidson from a mediocre, failing motorcycle manufacturer into a hip, trendy fashion empire that rivaled Avon and a distribution network that rivaled Amway. Harley accomplished in two decades as a fashion provider what it could not accomplish in seven previous decades as a motorcycle manufacturer and that is steady commercial success.
When the centennial celebration came around in 2003, Harley proudly claimed to be the oldest American manufacturer of American motorcycles and they spun a glorious though fictional tale of surviving hardship and of being the ideal American icon. The reality was that HD only became the number one manufacturer of American motorcycles by default because all of its competition died out or went out of business. HD would have gone out of business as well due to inept upper management but the intervention of AMF during the 1970’s and Uncle Sam during the 1980’s prevented the natural economic death that Harley Davidson had worked so hard for and so richly deserved.
HD was never number one when it had any direct competition in America from other American motorcycle manufacturers, it only became number one by default when no one else was left to challenge it. Let me try to put HD’s “success” into perspective for you. You are in a race with three other runners on a foot track. You are in last place. You constantly trip and fall. When you can’t keep up, when you refuse to train or build your body up to compete, you get the rules changed in your favor and still you are in last place. Suddenly, you have a stroke of good luck in that the other runners all suffer heart attacks and die on the track. You alone are left. You wheeze and pant, finally crossing the finish line amid the bodies of your competition and you declare yourself not only the only American runner on the track but also the best runner in the world. So much of the HD mentality and corporate history involves the intervention of delusion in order to hide their shortcomings.
HD is a failure and they’ve been a failure for over a century now. History shows a consistent trail of failure after failure, from management decisions to business ventures to competition entries. I do not support failure, especially failure of such a gross magnitude. You, for all of your well written email, apparently not only support failure but you have no problem in embracing it as well. I find that quite sad for someone who would like the world to perceive them as being both on the “high ground” as well as an “educated” Harley owner. Sadly, like I have often said before, you simply cannot be “educated” and own a Harley Davidson; the two are mutually and wholly exclusive.
“Do I worship my Harley-Davidson? My girlfriend might tell you I do, but for me I see it as more of an escape. When I ride, I am a part of the bike and the road. But more than that I am a part of my environment. Sitting in a car, you watch the world pass by your windows like you watch the television. You are not feeling the crisp air, smelling the pine trees, you are not "experiencing the ride" you are watching it.”
You could escape on an import motorcycle just as easily (and far cheaper) than you could on a Harley Davidson. The only reason that someone buys a HD is because they really want others to know that they have a HD and they want to be seen on a HD. A HD is like egotistical cement, it fills voids in your life that you cannot fill on your own. A HD isn’t a motorcycle so much as it is a crutch for people with no life to prop their selves up with. A HD gets you noticed when you could not be noticed on your own. You didn’t buy a HD because you wanted to, sir; you bought a HD because you needed to. Please don’t fool yourself because you certainly aren’t fooling us. Without your HD, you are incomplete. You believe that your HD makes you strong, that you are an individual when you ride it but your HD just shows the world how weak you are and that you can’t stand on your own without a big flashy noisy object to draw attention to you. After a decade and a half of dealing with Harley owners, I can safely say that you and those like you don’t ride your Harley Davidson so much as you wear it.
“Sport bikes and motorcycles with enough torque to leave the riders internal organs bunched into his hind quarters are built for the adrenaline junkie. They are designed for folks who are all about your speed and power. But on the open road, where there are laws against that kind of speed and where those of us on motorcycles are at a notable disadvantage to those wrapped in a couple tons of steel during a collision, who cares about getting to the grave yard faster? If you ride your 1995 Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R's 599cc in-line four bike and I ride my 2006 Harley-Davidson Dyna Wide glide 1450cc and we trip across country, you may beat me to all the rest stops, but I won't have to stop as often as you. And while you are at the destination tapping your foot and laughing at me for "Easy Riding" I will be enjoying my trip and seeing some of that beautiful county you claim to love so much but blazed right past in a blur of death defying speed and performance.”
That entire paragraph was composed of nothing but
silly, easily disprovable hillbilly
nonsense. You seemed to be off to a good
start with a logical argument and then you resort to that tired old drivel.
Sigh. To present yourself as a so-called educated Harley owner, you sure do
believe in the simplest and most basic core beliefs of the Milwaukee Orthodoxy,
Sportbikes are only designed to go fast.
Sportbike riders go everywhere at triple digits.
Sportbikes have to stop every hundred miles to fill up with gas.
Sportbikes are uncomfortable.
Perhaps your girlfriend is right when she says that you worship Harley Davidson because so much of how you think, so much of what you have said in your email to me can be attributed to a long list of common thoughts held as truth among Harley owners and these thoughts can be assigned by a system of numbers. You have been programmed with the catechism of the Church of Milwaukee, so much so that you may not even know it. A think-by-numbers mindset is usually the kind of behavior you find in preprogrammed automatons and other simple machines, not in educated people or individuals.
That’s really sad, sir, and quite telling.
You desperately should consider selling your Harley and finding a professional to deprogram you, that is, if you can muster the creativity and originality to craft a life of your very own rather than having to purchase your lifestyle from a commercial source. Judging by what you have said in your email, you’re far deeper down the rabbit hole than even you realize. I will honestly tell you that since you try to present yourself as an educated Harley owner that you fail in that task. You don’t come off any different than any other Harley owner, perhaps a little more well written but your core beliefs are still the same as that shared by the flock as a whole. I attribute most of that to the fact that performance has been missing from the Harley lineup for so long that you and those like you feel that not only is it unnatural but that it is also a very bad thing. Man! Don’t you just love that brainwashing! Harleys have no performance so now Harley owners are afraid of performance, they don’t understand it and they have been taught that performance is evil. All this by a company that cannot build performance so they alienate it from their conditioned brand slaves. I love it!
“That's where you and I truly differ my friend.”
Yes. We are very different because while you stopped thinking and questioning a long time ago, I never stopped thinking or questioning. The main difference between us is that my thoughts are original and that I think against the pattern of the flock whereas you follow the flock and share the same group-think that they do. The funny (or scary) thing is that you don’t even realize it when you’re doing it. You don’t question, you blindly accept what you are told, you believe what you hear and you regurgitate the myth on demand. That, perhaps, is why you fail as an individual human being (and why you own a Harley Davidson in the first place). If you truly were an individual and you truly were educated, you wouldn’t be a Harley owner.
“You claim to love your country, but sit in judgment over its people and race past its beauty. You point your finger at what you see as "Wrong" or un-American and nit pick at one of its best known companies.”
Do you honestly, actually believe that Harley
Davidson represents what is good and right with America? Do you actually believe
that a company that has consistently failed at nearly everything that they tried
represents America? Do you actually believe that a company that had to beg and
grovel for its life and then turned around and viciously punished those
Americans it purports to represent really stands for America? Do you actually
believe that a company that, when faced with new and better competition from
abroad, chose to retreat rather than stand their ground and fight represents
America? You actually believe that a company that became number one by default
rather than through any effort of its own represents America?
Do you believe that a company that punished hard working Americans and forced
them to buy inferior products or face financial penalties when it clearly had
other, better choices to remedy its situation represents America.
Damn, are you deluded, brother.
You don’t understand America and since you own a Harley Davidson, it’s obvious that you don’t understand motorcycles (or performance) either. I find nothing at all about Harley Davidson that represents the America that I love and adore and respect and it makes me sick when anyone compares Harley Davidson to America or tries to tell me that Harley Davidson represents America because the truth is that it does not.
“Well enjoy your freedom to do that, enjoy your freedom to speech and to sling mud at other Americans because you don't agree with their choices. I chose the moral high ground. And I ride my Harley there ;)”
I was taught, as an American, that it was my responsibility, as an American, that when I saw something wrong that I should not only speak out about it but that I should also do what I could to correct it. That is what I am doing with my website. You truly have to be stupid in order to own a Harley Davidson and nothing invalidates a college education or craps on a college diploma quicker than owning a Harley Davidson. Harley Davidson represents everything that is wrong with America and I find that both reprehensible and unforgivable. It disgusts me that Harley not only claims to be American but that they wrap their constant failure in the American flag and try to pass their company off as some kind of huge success when nothing could be further from the truth. If Harley has ever been a success at anything then it was success at failing and that is what they will best be remembered for. Today, Harley Davidson has far more in common with Amway and Avon than it ever will have in common with Honda or Ducati. That much is fact and the fact is that doing so was the only way that Harley Davidson could ever survive let alone prosper. They never were very good at making motorcycles but they've become great at creating and maintaining a lifestyle and the fashion accessories required to support it.
We are very different, sir.
You choose to punish success and reward failure. You choose to ride a lifestyle accessory from a failed company that specializes in providing a make-believe lifestyle to a group of posers and retards who can’t figure out how to live their own lives yet have the disposable income to buy a prepackaged lifestyle. You choose to buy someone else’s “experience” instead of creating an experience of your own. When you own or ride a Harley, you can hardly be considered original in any way, shape or form.
I ride a Honda because I choose to reward success. I choose to reward forward thinking, innovation, competition, victory, technology, evolution, and advancement (criteria that the America that I believe in once stood for). When I look at companies which build motorcycles and I look for a company that comes closest to representing America or traditional American values then it is Honda, not Harley Davidson, that truly represents America and the American way of life. I don’t ride a Harley (and never will) because I believe in punishing failure (not rewarding it) especially when that failure is part of a hundred year long streak of failing.
Print that on your website.
Ride safe and maybe, one day, when you're tired of all the make believe and fantasy, you'll get a real bike and realize that you can be your own person. Your girlfriend will thank you for it and your wallet will be a lot fatter in the process.
-Christopher T. Shields