Herbie the Satellite Bug

Sirius Satellite Radio is having a tough time selling the merger with XM in Washington, as we read in Radio Ink:

A letter signed by 72 members of the House of Representatives was sent this week to FCC Chairman Kevin Martin, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and Federal Trade Commission Chairman Deborah Platt Majoras expressing opposition to the proposed merger of XM and Sirius Satellite Radio.

"On its face, we believe that sanctioning the marriage of the only competitors in the satellite radio market would create a monopoly which would be devastating to consumers," said the letter, which was authored by Reps. Gene Green (D-TX), vice chair of the Subcommittee on Health, and Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI), second highest ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee.

Among the 47 Democrats who signed the letter are: Budget Committee Chair John Spratt (D-SC), Agriculture Committee Chair Collin Peterson (D-MN), Rules Committee Chair Louise Slaughter (D-NY), and presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich (D-OH).

Among the 25 Republicans who signed the letter are former House Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL), Republican Whip Roy Blunt (R-MO), and National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Tom Cole (R-OK).


We’ve been fond of the original "pocket rocket" for years, so we were glad to read some good news early this morning: Volkswagen is installing Sirius Radio in all their cars:

"The Volkswagen of America, Inc. plan to offer SIRIUS as standard equipment in select models not only proves VW’s commitment to the customer, but also shows VW’s commitment to technology that enhances driving pleasure and enjoyment in every sense," said Adrian Hallmark, Executive Vice President of Volkswagen of America. "SIRIUS Satellite Radio helps to enhance the driving experience and Volkswagen ownership pride."

"Since the first launch on the New Beetle in 2004, to now making it standard on the New Beetle and other key models, VW has always shown to be a significant partner in the growth of SIRIUS," said Mel Karmazin, CEO of SIRIUS. "Volkswagen of America’s decision to move in the direction of standardizing SIRIUS on key models only shows their commitment for expansion and growth of our capabilities."

SIRIUS and Volkswagen of America, Inc. announced in March 2006 that Volkswagen will offer SIRIUS as its sole satellite radio provider for vehicles sold in this country through 2012. Volkswagen has exclusively offered SIRIUS beginning with its 2007 model year vehicles and expects to equip approximately 80% of its vehicles with SIRIUS satellite radio receivers. Volkswagen additionally offers three months of complimentary service on vehicles equipped with SIRIUS.

That’s going to make VWs even more attractive for us rocket scientists, but it still doesn’t beat our favorite, the jet-engine New Beetle, putting out 1450 horsepower.

Of course, we love their "unpimp your ride" TV spots: