Berkeley CSUA MOTD:Entry 46447
Berkeley CSUA MOTD
2019/09/15 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular

2007/4/25-29 [Transportation/Car, Transportation/Car/RoadHogs] UID:46447 Activity:kinda low 66%like:46479
4/25    All right, an OSC column even motders can enjoy, anti-car rant!
        \_ What he's trying to say: "City life is better, healthier, good
             for the environment, good for civilization, etc etc."
           What 70% of the Americans will actually hear: "This guy hates my
             beloved SUV, my mansion and my freedom to choose however I
             want to live my life. Like a Nazi he is imposing his belief.
             What a fucking jerk. Go Raiders!!!"
        \_ I like his conclusion, but I don't understand all his arguments.
           Under "Get Back That Wasted Time", it sounds like he's saying
           driving less will give you more free time -- how would that work?
           Even in Berkeley, which seems pretty close to the city he's
           envisioning, driving is usually faster than walking or public
           \_ Not really, or, it depends on where you live in Berkeley.
              Besides, when you do drive, how much time do you spend driving in
              Berkeley?  In my experience, it was significantly less.
           \_ His arguments are strange.  But usually when people say driving
              wastes time, they mean that if you carpool as passenger or take
              public transit, you can read a book, take a nap, do some work on
              a laptop and so on.  BTW, some AC Transit transbay buses have
              free Wi-Fi.
              \_ Yeah I think most people would agree that even if walking
                 took somewhat longer, it's "quality time": it's a lot more
                 natural, it's not stressful like driving, it gives you
                 exercise, you can think about or do other things, you
                 can see interesting things along the way. That is unless you
                 live in sweltering hot areas or are walking in car-oriented
                 places that you don't want to be.
                 \_ That's fine if you have time to kick the leaves and smell
                    the flowers.  Some people have to be somewhere.
                    \_ The amount of free time you have is a matter of choice.
                    \_ I think in the sort of towns being proposed here,
                       things like scooters and vespas would be practical
                       for some trips. With less and slower traffic they
                       would be safer and more convenient than in sprawl.
                       One could even use... bicycles (gasp). The point is
                       that ideally the places you have to be in daily life
                       won't be so far that it matters.
              \_ It also includes the fact that if you carpool, you can go on
                 the carpool lane and get there faster.
        \_ This rox, thanks. -ausman
        \_ He was doing great right up to the mindless knee jerk attack on
           \_ "He agrees with me.  He is soooo smart!  Oh wait, he attacked my
               boy!  He's a total idiot!!!"
                \_ You know, this guy only complained about his attack on Gore.
                   He didn't sayhe was a total idiot and that everything else
                   he said was wrong because he attacked Gore.  In fact, he
                   said the guy was "doing fine."
           \_ I think it's pretty clear that the Gore jab (not even really
              an attack) is there as part of appealing to a broad audience.
              People who don't like Gore are probably predisposed against
              this essay's ideas, and anyway the global warming issue has
              all this political baggage associated with it. By making this
              argument in an offhand way he avoids possibly stigmatizing
              himself with a rabid political stance.
              \_ This is reason #2132 why we'll never solve our environmental
2019/09/15 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular

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7/29    Is it really true that we subsidize auto driving to the tune of
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2012/7/9-8/19 [Transportation/Car] UID:54433 Activity:nil
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        \_ Alpha animals.
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2011/12/5-2012/1/10 [Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:54250 Activity:nil
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2011/7/10-8/2 [Transportation/Car/Hybrid] UID:54141 Activity:nil
7/8     Is there some reason we can't have mass market nat gas cars?
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        \_ Not enough infrastructure for refueling.  Chicken and egg.
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2010/8/23-9/7 [Transportation/Car] UID:53931 Activity:nil
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2012/5/25-30 [Transportation/Car/RoadHogs, Reference/RealEstate] UID:54400 Activity:nil
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2009/11/23-12/2 [Transportation/Car/RoadHogs, Reference/RealEstate] UID:53540 Activity:moderate
 11/23  "Warming's impacts sped up, worsened since Kyoto"
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2009/4/6-13 [Reference/Tax, Transportation/PublicTransit] UID:52808 Activity:high
4/6     Alameda sales tax is now 9.75%. that's pretty rough. sales
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        wants to raise Oakland sales tax even more, in this
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        \_ Yes, the sales tax, car tax, and income tax increases enacted by the
           state legislature are the largest in history, and massively
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Rhinoceros Times, Greensboro, NC By Orson Scott Card April 8, 2007 Life Without Cars Aren't cars great? In the last sixty years, we've built such a great network of roads and service stations and restaurants that whenever you feel like it, you can get into your car and drive and drive and drive and ... Between motels and gas prices and all, it's cheaper anyway, when you've got any real distance to travel. Oh, yeah -- to commute to work, because there are no trains any more, no streetcars, the buses only run once an hour and they don't go anywhere near home or work, and what if I have to work late? Kids go to lessons, practices, games, movies, parties, play dates. And, of course, to the gas station to fill up for the next day's driving. Anything we want to do, anywhere we want to go, we have to get into the car. Thank heaven for the Internet, so we can order stuff without having to find a parking place. Our life regulated by stripes marking the parking places. Shopping carts so we can make the long trek back to the far end of the parking lot and fill the back of our SUV with stuff we had to drive to get. On the weekend, drive somewhere to get away from it all -- and park the car between the same white lines we left behind at every store back home. Cars were fun, but people in the city didn't actually need them. There were streetcars and subways and elevated railways in the big cities; Get away from the crowds, to a place where we could have estates with vast lawns and woods like the rich people. None of these houses butting right up against the sidewalk -- we'd have lawns and trees! Meanwhile, the government set about boosting the automobile industry by building a vast network of roads. Gradually, the purpose of local government (besides ruining education, of course) was to redesign our cities so that cars could get everywhere and do everything. Can't do it unless you comply with the parking requirements. Stores have to be separated from each other, set far back from the street, and supplied with vast stretches of parking places. And while we're zoning, let's protect property values by making sure that neighborhoods consist of houses of comparable value and lot-size. And let's make sure everybody gets quiet streets and cul-de-sacs, so we'll wind the streets around until you can't actually tell where you are or how neighborhoods fit together. Just island neighborhoods in splendid isolation, with roads so convoluted that half our driving is just to get out of the island and onto a road that goes somewhere. You just walk around looking at other people's yards and houses. The only people you see are the other walkers -- or the yard guys working on other people's lawns and shrubs. You can see it from where you are, but please don't be stupid and try to walk there. You have to walk all the way out to the street -- or cut through prickly hedges or climb fences. Lots of parking and strict rules about turn lanes and such. But if you just want to walk from store to store, unless they're in the same shopping complex, you can't get there. Some people hate the idea of walking on their errands, breathing all that ... Some people want to live on an island and hardly see anybody except on television. Some people want to drive to work, every day, the same route, the same parking hassles, hours and hours and hours of stepping on the gas, the brake, the gas, flipping the signal, turning the wheel. There's Another Way But here and there, a new generation of planners are recreating what we once had, and threw away. Homes that provide access for pedestrians to get somewhere quickly and actually do something without ever having to get into a car. I recently read a book called Suburban Nation: The Rise of Sprawl and the Decline of the American Dream. The authors (Andrews Duany, Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, and Jeff Speck) lay down the principles of the life many of us -- maybe most of us -- wish we were living. A life that isn't lived inside these tiny moving hovels we call cars. When people are parked at the curb, cars can't pass each other going both ways. So cars go very slowly and the drivers are constantly alert. In fact, pedestrians and bikers and skaters act like they own the street. Alleys hold the garbage cans and the garages or parking places so the street stays clean. Nobody lives more than three short blocks from a bus stop or other public transportation, and because so many people use public transit, the buses come frequently; you never wait more than fifteen minutes during the peak times. During that waiting time, or while riding the bus or train, people read or listen to recordings or -- get this -- talk to each other. People meet their neighbors because they're not all locked inside metal-and-plastic shacks moving down the street. You pass each other going to and from schools and stores and work. There are multi-family dwellings, there are apartments over the stores. In fact, the neighborhood is designed so that people from every walk of life (except, of course, the very rich, whom nobody likes anyway) see each other and even talk to each other every day. What happens to property values in small-yard, narrow-street, pedestrian-oriented, mixed-use neighborhoods like this? spending three days in a row without getting in your car one time, not because it's in the shop and you're trapped at home, but because you live in a town, a village, a neighborhood that isn't a desert island with yards. You live in the neighborhood of Dandelion Wine and you don't have to spend your days steering between white lines. We redesigned our living patterns and got rid of public transportation so that we could boost the American automobile industry. Now we are forced to pay huge taxes to Iran, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, and other oil-producing countries -- and we're buying half our cars from Japan and Germany and Korea. Even if you don't want to live in the neighborhood I described, there are compelling reasons for us to cut way back on the number of hours we spend on the road in cars: 1 Stop Funding Our Enemies. As long as we're burning oil to buy groceries that used to be in the corner store and to take the kids to games and lessons that used to take place in neighborhoods and to get to work that we used to get to by bus or train, there's going to be a vast pool of oil money from which the sponsors of terrorism can draw. If you cut your driving hours in half, how much time would you get back every day, to use on things you want to do? Even if all you want to do is veg out in front of the television, that's your choice. For a lot of us, though, that would be an hour to spend with spouse and children. Going out to eat, or cooking a real sit-down meal at home. And this is a war in which the victims are children, teenagers, elderly people, adults in their prime. Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for people from 4 through 33 years old. If the American people drove only half the number of miles every year, it's reasonable to assume that the death rate would also be cut in half. People don't die randomly -- they die because of drunks, reckless teenagers, sleepy drivers, stressed-out drivers in a rage, and drivers so desperate not to be driving that they're trying to do something else at the same time. If we drove half the number of hours, the quality of our driving would likely improve. 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