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Re: Cars and the New Insecurity

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  • mdh6214
    This sounds like class politics at its worst. Anybody who isn t driving is supposedly one of two things: - Poor, unable to afford a car, and not paying their
    Message 1 of 4 , Dec 21, 2010
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      This sounds like class politics at its worst. Anybody who isn't driving is supposedly one of two things:

      - Poor, unable to afford a car, and not paying their fair share, or
      - Smug elitists who don't want cars or don't drive their cars enough, and thus are not paying their fair share.

      Of course, neither of these two "groups" understands the "reality" of "regular Americans" who "have to" drive everywhere.

      We're about to get bus and bike lanes on a major east-west street here, which will reduce the driving lanes from six to four. Meanwhile, another major east-west street is being narrowed from four to two lanes and getting very wide sidewalks. Needless to say, there's public outrage over this, because it'll supposedly only benefit college students and near-downtown residents, all of whom are out of touch with reality.

      --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, Richard Risemberg <rickrise@...> wrote:
      >
      > Interesting musings on why some drivers are becoming more rage-prone
      > as others (and their children) lose enthusiasm for the car:
      >
      > http://bit.ly/fWEYnu
      >
      > Rick
    • Richard Risemberg
      ... And, of course, driving is so subsidized--that is to say, fees and taxes applied to cars, fuel, and drivers themselves cover so little of the cost of
      Message 2 of 4 , Dec 21, 2010
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        On Dec 21, 2010, at 5:48 AM, mdh6214 wrote:

        > This sounds like class politics at its worst. Anybody who isn't
        > driving is supposedly one of two things:
        >
        > - Poor, unable to afford a car, and not paying their fair share, or
        > - Smug elitists who don't want cars or don't drive their cars
        > enough, and thus are not paying their fair share.
        >
        > Of course, neither of these two "groups" understands the "reality"
        > of "regular Americans" who "have to" drive everywhere.
        >
        > We're about to get bus and bike lanes on a major east-west street
        > here, which will reduce the driving lanes from six to four.
        > Meanwhile, another major east-west street is being narrowed from
        > four to two lanes and getting very wide sidewalks. Needless to say,
        > there's public outrage over this, because it'll supposedly only
        > benefit college students and near-downtown residents, all of whom
        > are out of touch with reality.


        And, of course, driving is so subsidized--that is to say, fees and
        taxes applied to cars, fuel, and drivers themselves cover so little
        of the cost of simply maintaining road infrastructure--that people
        who drive less, or not at all, are overpaying in general taxes to
        support the motoring hobbyists.

        Todd Litman has covered this at length at http://www.vtpi.org , and
        then there's this gem:

        http://tinyurl.com/276ytfb

        Rick
        --
        Richard Risemberg
        http://www.bicyclefixation.com
        http://www.newcolonist.com
        http://www.rickrise.com







        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • mdh6214
        There s a photo circulating on the Internet that demonstrates this sense of entitlement. A student has tacked a flyer to an on-campus reserved parking sign
        Message 3 of 4 , Dec 21, 2010
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          There's a photo circulating on the Internet that demonstrates this sense of entitlement. A student has tacked a flyer to an on-campus reserved parking sign reading "If I'm paying $22,000 per year in tuition, why can't the University provide adequate student parking?"

          This shows the attitude many people have: as a customer, student, employee, tenant, or visitor, they are "entitled" to free parking. The sense of "entitlement" only gets worse when someone is spending 1/4 of their income on car payments--"I'm paying $500 per month for this car; I can park wherever I want for free."

          IMHO, borrowing money for anything other than your home or education is dumb, but I won't go off-topic here. :-)

          > And, of course, driving is so subsidized--that is to say, fees and
          > taxes applied to cars, fuel, and drivers themselves cover so little
          > of the cost of simply maintaining road infrastructure--that people
          > who drive less, or not at all, are overpaying in general taxes to
          > support the motoring hobbyists.
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