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Re: Spying on the enemy

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  • Ken Kifer
    Jennifer Dotson wrote: And until NPR stopped them, the Car Talk guys were doing a Live Larger, Drive Smaller campaign with Stonyfield Farms Yogurt. The
    Message 1 of 2 , Oct 15, 2002
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      Jennifer Dotson wrote:
      And until NPR stopped them, the Car Talk guys were doing a "Live Larger,
      Drive Smaller" campaign with Stonyfield Farms Yogurt. The campaign was to
      get people to not drive SUVs. Evidently NPR has a "policy" of no advocacy.
      I found that a bit surprising, after listening to how many years of ADM and
      other commercials during NPR shows. I guess NPR really means that in order
      to advocate for something, they want money. Unlike most public TV, ads are
      ok on NPR but PSAs aren't.

      Ken Kifer replies:
      NPR has changed quite a bit over the years, although superficially it's the
      same. I find in recent years 1) a greater tendency to focus on news events
      rather than on features, 2) a much greater tendency to repeat the same
      information every half hour rather than longer, indepth news reporting, 3) fewer
      opinions, more commentators and two-people debates, 4) much more information
      from the right and from the libertarians (for a while, the Cato Institute was
      half of every debate), 5) more gossip and speculation, especially during the
      Clinton years, and 6) quite a few ads, especially on the local stations. NPR
      has been running very hard towards the right to avoid future funding loss, and
      this change best explains all the other changes and the often muddled messages.
      Jennifer Dotson also wrote (in part):
      Not that I think buying new cars at all is the way to go, but this
      information suggests that encouraging purchases away from SUVs will also
      affect automakers' profitability.

      Ken Kifer replies:
      To me, the argument away from SUV's to other cars is not a great deal of
      improvement.

      The problem of profitability is a problem of the entire environmental movement.

      We can argue at some times that making environmental changes will save money and
      at other times that making those changes will create jobs -- but -- it's pretty
      difficult to imagine such changes producing large amounts of income for big
      industries.

      The way to make lots of cash is through waste and exploitation. Wealth was once
      created mostly by enslaving people, and now it is created mostly by degrading
      Nature. I admit that the last boom and bust cycle exploited virtual reality to
      a large extent, but I can't imagine a economic boom created by reducing global
      warming and environmental damage. Something that benefits everybody does not
      create large profits. It's true that fads create lots of money, but they are
      unstable, do not last long, and end up producing waste.

      If we imagine an idyllic future post-industrial time, when people use bicycles
      for local transportation and light rail for longer distances and for freight,
      when power is produced by the sun, wind, and water, when most industries are
      local (the only advantage to producing goods on the other side of the world is
      cheaper labor), and the products produced are not damaging to the environment,
      then there is no remaining role for giant corporations.
      --
      Ken Kifer's Bike Pages: 150 web pages -- touring, commuting,
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