Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: "America's Epidemic of Youth Obesity"--NYT article

Expand Messages
  • Matt Hohmeister
    As odd as this sounds, this is one of the things that I am frankly tired of hearing--that our life will slow down if we stop our current car culture and that
    Message 1 of 33 , Dec 2, 2002
    • 0 Attachment
      As odd as this sounds, this is one of the things that I am frankly
      tired of hearing--that our life will "slow down" if we stop our
      current car culture and that the "extra time" spent riding mass
      transit is worth it. However, I do agree with the statement--even in
      cities with bad mass transit systems, I would rather spend 30 minutes
      sitting on a bus or at a bus stop than 15 minutes driving in heavy
      traffic.

      If our governments stopped subsidizing transportation, car use would
      be much less popular, due to its much higher cost, since not all
      taxpayers would be forced to pay for the activities of some. Also,
      last I checked, in many big cities, it's faster to use mass transit
      than to drive. Even here in small, auto-centric Tallahassee, as a
      university student living approximately 6 km from campus, I found the
      bus faster than driving if I factored in the time I spend walking to
      wherever I happened to park.

      Some people refer to car use as a personal choice. That might be true,
      but it's a personal choice very heavily influenced by a government
      that, judging from its spending habits on roads, wants you to do
      nothing but drive. For some of us, it's not a choice. We get jobs in
      areas that are accessibe only by freeway, and we have to keep cars,
      otherwise, we would not get to work. I want to be presented with a
      real free-market choice of how I get somewhere, and see mass transit
      as superior because it's cheaper and faster--not because it's the
      "right" thing to do.

      Now...about the slowing down. While a carfree environment would get us
      where we need to go faster, it might *feel* as if it's slower, since
      we're not doing any "work" to get there--just sitting in a seat with
      no seat belt, waiting for the appropriate stop. This would make things
      feel less "urgent" and should curb the need to feel like you must get
      somewhere 1-2 minutes faster. Even if we do have an urgency, we will
      get there faster. I once had a 15-minute walk to and from work, and in
      an urgency, I ran home and got home safely in 8 minutes. If I was a
      15-minute drive from work, there's no way I could make it home in 8
      minutes without putting my life and others at risk.

      *snip*
      Sure, if you stop taking the car for everything, your life will slow
      down. But in light of the fact that many of us feel overworked and
      overstressed for much of the time, could it be a bad thing to slow
      down a bit?
      *snip*
    • paulparma <info@venetianpassage.com>
      ... Should we be targeting the transportation departments as well as , maybe even preceding lobbying the legislators? These guys are are the ones under
      Message 33 of 33 , Dec 11, 2002
      • 0 Attachment
        --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, "J.H. Crawford" <mailbox@c...>

        > I see a window of opportunity here. The next year or two are going
        > to be years of budget crises in the USA, especially at the state
        > level. ....................
        >
        > Are we ready? Can we organize to take adantage of this opportunity?
        > Can we start a massive program of writing to legislators and news
        > media? Can anyone take responsibilty for coming up with the best
        > numbers we've got and working them into some generalized press
        > releases? Can others tailor these for local environments and get
        > them into the right hands? Lots of work, but some real chance of
        > a payback.
        >

        Should we be targeting the transportation departments as well as ,
        maybe even preceding lobbying the legislators? These guys are are the
        ones under presure; there's all that federal money, waiting to be
        matched, because we are still driving and paying those federal gas tax
        dollars, so the federal pile keeps getting bigger, and unused. Won't
        the state folks know that as the DIRECT gas taxes go up, the gas usage
        goes down. Which I think, if this is in fact so, can be properly
        countered with, sure, now you'll have all the money you need to do
        what ever people want to pay for.... so trtansit, and most central,
        dense building and rebuilding, wil get a fare shake.

        To me this is the thing we have to discuss, besides the numbers, and
        were it comes from now stuff; that is we need to diccuss what we think
        the very astute sense of the xportation administrators to know that if
        they raise the gas taxes, revinue, especially in a recovered economy
        will be down from what it could be in the current methodology. I
        think that the game has in fact changed in that toll roads are now
        the previlent building mode.... discussion by more informed
        members....

        Paul Parma
      Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.