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More Inappropriate Political Remarks

Seabishop

Cyburbian
Messages
3,838
Points
25
First APA denounced Trent Lott's comments (now we all know racism is bad). Now New Urbanism.org has this statement under its "news" page:

THE UNITED STATES DEFENSE BUDGET FOR THIS YEAR IS $400 BILLION! WE THINK THAT IS COMPLETELY OUTRAGEOUS! WE PROPOSE SPENDING AT LEAST HALF OF THIS MONEY BUILDING METRO RAIL SYSTEMS ACROSS THE UNITED STATES AS OUR NATIONAL DEFENSE
STRATEGY Instead of creating "weapons of mass destruction" meant for destroying countries and killing people, we propose spending this money building Metro rail systems across America as our national defense strategy. . . it goes on


www.newurbanism.org/pages/416431/index.htm

I do agree that this country should be spending more on a national passenger rail system, but are new urbanists really experts on foriegn policy and defense spending? I support new urbanism as a planning strategy, but its not a political party for God's sake. This sort of thing just makes planners look like a bunch of kooky activists with no basis in reality.
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,078
Points
33
It is unfortunate that people do not realize that when they use a professional forum to advance unrelated political goals, all they do is undermine themselves.
 

Runner

Cyburbian
Messages
566
Points
17
While I personally believe that money spent for our defense department is generally well spent. Especially, the more bang for the buck USMC ;)

I do however think this web site has brought up some ideas well worth considering. Furthermore, I think the web site presents a good argument for New Urbanism.

Life is so much more fuller when we can feel passionate about something. I can attest that the web site's author definitely does.
 

Seabishop

Cyburbian
Messages
3,838
Points
25
Runner said:
I do however think this web site has brought up some ideas well worth considering. Furthermore, I think the web site presents a good argument for New Urbanism.
hhmm - you might be right. I read that statement and ran on over to cyburbia to rant about it.

I think that its something we all feel passionately about but that people like that might be streching the issue way too far. I don't think its much different then Ben Affleck, Martin Sheen etc. giving their views on defense spending. I think this guy reinforces the cigar-chompin' developer's notion of planners as tools of the ultra-left.

And if the author of that article happens to be a registered cyburbianite, then my bad, dogg, keep at it!
 

Repo Man

Cyburbian
Messages
2,550
Points
24
My problem with their position is that they made up this list of 10 things that will happen if we expand metra trains all over the US. This list is more of a wish list than a list of things that they know will happen if the US adopts their policy.

They claim that :

1. Millions of gallons of gas saved
2. International tensions would be eased due to the great reduction in oil need
3. Wars would not need to be constantly fought over oil
4. Many thousands of lives would be saved of those being bombed
5. Thousands more lives would be saved from the huge reduction in car accidents
6. Millions of injuries would be prevented (both from warfare and car accidents)
7. Air pollution would be drastically reduced
8. Lung diseases and cancer would be reduced from the cleaner air
9. Global warming and climate change would slow down and come to a halt
10. Towns and cities would become more walkable and
pedestrian friendly

This is a pipe dream. Adding rail lines is not going to prevent millions of injuries, nor is it going to stop global warming, or release international tensions. Where in the hell are the facts, research, or data to back up these claims? It annoys me that a group of people attach their politics to the concept of New Urbanism. When are people going to learn that people like their cars? Cars are the second biggest purchase that most people make and to think that they will give them up because there are some train stations in major cities is being naive.
 

SkeLeton

Cyburbian
Messages
4,853
Points
26
my 2 cents

for those claims to become reality, the US (and actually the western world) would have to experience a BIG change of culture. Even though in Europe the public transit works quite well (AFAIK) but Europe isn't the role model of the western world, it's the US. More than invest in public transit infrastructure, they could do some advertising ads (hopefully not so silly as the "If you drive a SUV you support the terrorists") encouraging the use of public transit. And also investing in cleaner technologies for cars, so they don't pollute so much.
Of course the advertising stage should come after "unclogging" some public transit lines that are actually being used.

An idea for making clean cars appealing: Make Sport (or sporty looking) fuel cell cars! :D that would catch on a lot of people.
 
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