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Raise Gas Taxes!

Runner

Cyburbian
Messages
566
Points
17
gkmo62u said:
Traffic is a by-product of choices. I can choose to live where the housing is cheaper but there are no jobs.

Without the individual expense of automobiles and massive societal expense of the highway lobby, medical expenses, etc it might be more likely that a better choice would be made to live closer to a job.

The alternative may/should be a country home but unemployment...

Remember, an automobile is not a right. I've double checked the constitution on that one.
 

mike gurnee

Cyburbian
Messages
3,065
Points
32
I can't tell if a "professional" response is in order. We planners should ascertain the public interest. If that is found to curtail the use of carbon motors, so be it, look for alternatives as discussed. If it is merely a personal opinion, there are ways to get the point across--but not professionally.

If I have a point, it is to not mix the professional and persaonal as has been done above. I personally favor a single land tax, as per Lloyd Geoge, that assesses the land for its potential value rather than current use. with top down planning, this could immediately stop sprawl. Inner ring areas would be so highly taxed that redevelopment to higher density is the only plausible solution. Outer areas would be so lower taxed that they could remain exurban.

And if I proposed this to my governing body, I would be looking for a new job.
 

H

Cyburbian
Messages
2,846
Points
24
gkmo62u said:
Again you are missing the point.

You say its a better quality of life. But you don't speak for everyone.

I don't want to take the bus, you want me to take the bus.

Traffic is a by-product of choices. I can choose to live where the housing is cheaper but there are no jobs.

Don't get me wrong, all vehicles should have reasonable requirements to attain cleaner levels and reduce pollutants, and they do.

But is it a fair and educated choice? The built environment is built around the car in the US because policy directs it that way, and public transportation is in most cases difficult to use with few limited lines.

No, I don’t want to force you to take the bus or to ride a bike. I never said ban the car, I have a car (though I use it very little). I said don’t have policy requiring min. parking, and I would like to see a max., specifically in urban areas because many parking lots are ridiculously large in size and destroying our natural areas and urban fabric.

Unfortunately you, like many others, probably will never change your mind about your car, & that is your choice, we are lucky enough to live where we can choose (again it is not a right to drive) and you can stay in your car should you choose and ruin my and others ‘quality of life’ with your excessive traffic, danger, pavement & pollution.

& I will walk, as I do…
 

gkmo62u

Cyburbian
Messages
1,046
Points
24
Huston, these forums usually provide quality reasoned debate. Don't be so sensitive. Childish exhortations such as "you can ruin my quality of life".....leads to most people ignoring you.

If you want to propose how to change our built environment, let's go in that direction.
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,069
Points
34
I was going to stay out of this thread, but I've been drawn in. I applaud all of you who take a bus, ride a bike, or segway around town. That may work for you. What about the millions of Americans who don't have a choice?

I live in a rural community of 14,000. It is ten miles to get to other communities in the region, and fifty to the metropolitan centers. There are no trains or buses in town, much less between them. I drive to work, though it is only two miles, because I have no choice. My job requires me to be mobile to attend meetings or check on the progress of projects. A bike or even a Segway will not cut it. Even more so for people who work out of town.

So what are the choices? Live next to work? -- better not change jobs or have a spouse that works somewhere else. Implement public transportation? -- when cities with millions of people struggle to support transit, do you really think it will have justifiable ridership in a city of 14,000? Maybe we should just get rid of small towns and rural communities -- we can all live in mixed-use city neighborhoods with trendy lofts, aprtments and rowhouses.

Perhaps our greatest failing as a profession -- and a reason we are so often relegared to the basement of city hall -- is a single-minded, often elitist view of how everyone should be living in the perfect world of our creation. The reality is that different lifestyle choices appeal to different people. As planners, we should be concentrating on providing balance between differing perspectives rather than finding ways to force everyone else into our choice.
 

H

Cyburbian
Messages
2,846
Points
24
gkmo62u said:
Huston, these forums usually provide quality reasoned debate. Don't be so sensitive. Childish exhortations such as "you can ruin my quality of life".....leads to most people ignoring you.

If you want to propose how to change our built environment, let's go in that direction.

Sensitive, absolutely, I just care too much about how the US is paving over our beautiful land and valuable resources. I am guilty of being sensitive about this; your right, but I see nothing childish about it. I really believe that excessive traffic, danger, pavement & pollution is ruining quality of life (maybe not for you, but for many).

The reason I used the term “my” was a direct response to your earlier statement, “You say it is a better quality of life. But you don't speak for everyone.”

You are correct, I can’t speak for everyone. You wish to drive and I wish to walk or take the train. That was the meaning of the statement.

And in regards to “If you want to propose how to change our built environment, let's go in that direction.”

That is what started this. I suggested no minimum parking regulations with possible maximums.

If you want to revert back to that, then by all means…lets, because I believe the rest of this discussion is going nowhere fast.


PS. And please spare your “pointers” on how to debate in these forums, nobody likes a smartass.
 

jresta

Cyburbian
Messages
1,474
Points
23
I don't believe in objectivity and I can't trust anyone who claims to be. You either have an opinion or you don't and you either believe in that opinion or you don't.

The people who defend their automobile habit are great at building straw men and the people who call for less driving are great at defending those straw men. If you believe that people drive too much then you should be framing your own argument and not letting someone else frame it for you.

Although I live in Philadelphia now I've spent most of my life in small towns in NJ where everyone had a car and used them way more than was necessary. I grew up in a town of single family detached houses, most of which are within walking distance of Main St. and the train station.

No one is saying that everyone should live in a place like Manhattan or inside the Loop or in Center City. No one is even saying that you should live in a city. All anyone is saying is that you shouldn't have to use your car for every single want or need.
"New Urbanist" developments were never meant to be strictly urban infill projects. From the very begining (Seaside, Kentlands, etc.) they've always been about recreating the traditional American town with a centrally located main shopping street.

As far as the "right" to create traffic is concerned - well, i've said it before, when some company starts producing self contained atmospheres then you'll have the right to burn whatever you want, as much as you want.

If it were all about choice then the pro-auto crowd would realize that their "choice" hampers the opportunity for my "choice" to develop. In no way shape or form is equal opportunity given to both "choices". Not in federal policy, not in lending policy, and certainly not in reality as virtually none of it is being built in my neck of the woods. The few disjointed projects that fall under "my choice" sell before construction and fetch ridiculous sums.

As far as "choice" is concerned I'll leave you with this from the since expired lower-manhattan carpool rule. The point of this is to demonstrate the gross inefficiency that solo commuting presents and that obviously the burden it creates is not taken into account with gas taxes:

Excluding vehicles with commercial plates, fewer than 100,000 solo car drivers ordinarily commute into Manhattan on the eight affected crossings during 6 a.m. - 12 noon, according to estimates of pre-Sept. 11 travel patterns by transportation analyst Charles Komanoff. That's only 1% of all commuting in the region, and a mere 5% of CBD-bound travelers. Yet many news reports implicitly treat discommoded solo drivers as a sizeable group, or even the mainstream of New York commuters.

Even excluding rail transit, single-occupant cars move fewer than a third of all highway commuters, but they fill up more than half of Manhattan-bound morning traffic. In other words, a the solo-driving minority is taking up an absolute majority of road space.

Writing in today's (Oct. 1) Newsday, Komanoff noted that "The resulting congestion ensnares everyone from car-poolers and bus riders to the solo drivers themselves. Vans carrying tradespeople and trucks laden with goods the city needs to keep its economy going have been especially hard hit," he noted.

"Think of all eight crossings into Manhattan as a 20-lane highway," Komanoff wrote. "Single-occupant vehicles, accounting for 53 percent of traffic, occupy 11 lanes but they deliver only 30 percent of commuters - just six lanes' worth."

The five wasted lanes are the equivalent of closing both the Queens Midtown Tunnel and the Brooklyn Bridge. Radio traffic reports call it "congestion," Komanoff noted, but it's really just inefficiency.

Komanoff's piece called on Giuliani - and the next mayor - to keep the SOV ban while expanding off-peak transit service, providing computer-assisted carpooling, and building new strategic rail lines and connectors such as the Second Avenue Subway and an East-Side terminal for the Long Island Rail Road. He also urged the next mayor to start the transition to variable, non-stop tolling on all city bridges, tunnels and highways.
 

Repo Man

Cyburbian
Messages
2,545
Points
25
Runner said:
Those under 21 who do not go to college should get a job and then apply for an occupational license (meaning a license that allows them to drive to and from work). Those that live in a rural location and go to college could do what I did: have a licensed driver (parents, bus driver, etc.) drop them off at the beginning of the semester and pick them up at the end. Then during the semester rely on feet, bicycle, or public transit.

When you are 18, you are a legal adult. You can vote, you have to register for the draft, your parents can kick you out of the house, why should you not be allowed to drive?

You know, not eveyone has the luxury of living on campus. I live 4 blocks from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, which is a huge commuter college. Many students choose to continue to live in the suburbs with their parents because they cannot afford to live on or near campus. They need driver's licenses to get to and from campus and/or any job that they have to pay for college. What about people who go to technical or trade colleges with no housing or those who go to school part time? Should they have to apply for an occupational license too? I suppose someone who was under 21 shoudn't be able to drive somewhere for vacation either? Or to a friends house? Or out on a date? To get groceries? To a movie or concert?

Under your scenerio, people between 18 and 21 would really be getting screwed.
 

el Guapo

Capitalist
Messages
5,986
Points
31
Huston said:
PS. And please spare your “pointers” on how to debate in these forums, nobody likes a smartass.

I live for a good smartass. Welcome aboard. ;)

Jresta has a point about how at certain density levels people need to give up certain options for the good of society. No one lives in NYC involuntarily. Therefore, they accept a certain loss of freedom in order to participate in the good and the bad that comes from living there.

I just can't relate to the desire to live like they do. To me - a diehard Malthusian - There are just to gawd damn many people. In my lifetime, we are going to end up with a Singapore level of density across the east coast. That monster is going to scavenge the countryside. Nothing will be safe from it. We will all have to live by its rules – whether they make since for us or not. Politically, it has always been the cities über alles. That is what scares me.
 

H

Cyburbian
Messages
2,846
Points
24
El Guapo said:
I live for a good smartass. Welcome aboard. ;)


Well, I should of left the smart part out, but I was trying to stay semi-pg.
 

H

Cyburbian
Messages
2,846
Points
24
Huston said:
Well, I should of left the smart part out, but I was trying to stay semi-pg.

Follow up: gkmo62u, I retract that. But however, I do not appreciate you condescending remarks and suggestive innuendos from your earlier posts.
 

jresta

Cyburbian
Messages
1,474
Points
23
Jresta has a point about how at certain density levels people need to give up certain options for the good of society. No one lives in NYC involuntarily.

The point of that wasn't to bring up the issues of cities (even though 25% of Americans live within 100 miles of the Northeast Corridor) It's to say that drivers aren't paying for the full cost of their product.

If your driving is diminishing the quality of my drinking water (as is normally associated with areas that are more than 12% impermeable cover not to mention all the drippings and exhaust from cars) and you are not paying for either the cleaning of said water or for trucking in clean water or for eliminating the cause of the problem, whichever costs more, then you are externalizing the cost of driving.

Through that externality you are forcing me to subsidize your transportation choice. I'm either subsidizing it with my health or with my wallet.

Of course this list could grow to include the dozen or so refineries within 20 miles of my house and all the spills and leaks associated with oil tankers in the Delaware or for emergency services associated with traffic accidents along with the highway patrol, etc. The list could go on and on. The point is that most of these costs are borne in the form of federal, state, or municipal taxes and none of them are funded by any tax collected at the pump.

If you live in a rural area your driving is being subsidized in turn by those who drive in urban areas. New Jersey - with the most drivers per lane mile in the country - still doesn't collect enough in taxes to fix what facilities we have. Rural areas have no chance of paying for their auto-infrastructure in any way that would be affordable to the average driver.

The point of all this is that driving is unsustainable. We can't afford it. We'd all like to "choose" a lot of things in life but we shouldn't force the costs on people who are suffering from it. Cruising around in our playthings shouldn't take that kind of priority.
 

Runner

Cyburbian
Messages
566
Points
17
jtfortin said:
When you are 18, you are a legal adult. You can vote, you have to register for the draft, your parents can kick you out of the house, why should you not be allowed to drive?
Because it is a dangerous piece of machinery. You can't do everything legally at 18, for example restrictions of age 21 for habitually carrying a handgun.

jtfortin said:
I live 4 blocks from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
And for the life of me I can't figure out why someone could not walk, ride a bike, or take transit that distance

jtfortin said:
Many students choose to continue to live in the suburbs with their parents because they cannot afford to live on or near campus. They need driver's licenses to get to and from campus and/or any job that they have to pay for college.
I suspect that where there is a will there is a way. Not having to support a car would free up money to spend on housing. Of course a person does not get the services of a cook and maid service when they move out of the nest...

jtfortin said:
What about people who go to technical or trade colleges with no housing or those who go to school part time? Should they have to apply for an occupational license too?
Yes

jtfortin said:
I suppose someone who was under 21 shoudn't be able to drive somewhere for vacation either? Or to a friends house? Or out on a date? To get groceries? To a movie or concert?
No they should not. They would have to use their grey matter, and maybe their feet, to figure out an alternative.

jtfortin said:
Under your scenerio, people between 18 and 21 would really be getting screwed.
If "getting screwed" means not having the use of an automobile, well... Yes.

Warning rant follows:

But don't worry, what should happen is not going to happen. After all isn't it a constitutional right to drive and a God given right for each American kid to be issued an automobile at age 16? If we did not have our beloved automobiles life on this planet would surely end. We will continue sitting on our fat butts motoring to the local fry pit or tanning salon... If we did not have automobiles we would have to watch TV at home, we would never be able to drive over to our friends house to watch TV.
 

Repo Man

Cyburbian
Messages
2,545
Points
25
Runner said:
Because it is a dangerous piece of machinery. You can't do everything legally at 18, for example restrictions of age 21 for habitually carrying a handgun.

-Unless you are a cop or a mugger, you don't "need" a handgun to earn a living. (Ok, maybe the NRA would disagree).


And for the life of me I can't figure out why someone could not walk, ride a bike, or take transit that distance I suspect that where there is a will there is a way. Not having to support a car would free up money to spend on housing. Of course a person does not get the services of a cook and maid service when they move out of the nest...

- FYI, I went to school at UWM for 6.5 years (4.5 undergrad, 2 grad) and NEVER drove my car to campus. I either walked, took the bus or rode my bike. However during the summers I had a job that I needed to drive to because the closest any bus came to it was 10 miles. Oh, I suppose I could have worked at the McDonalds by campus, but I made a hell of a lot more money because I had a car to get there. The cost of owning a car is nothing compared to housing costs.

I guess this argument could go on for days and days so I will agree to disagree.

Cars Rule!! ;)
 

Runner

Cyburbian
Messages
566
Points
17
mike gurnee said:
We planners should ascertain the public interest. If that is found to curtail the use of carbon motors, so be it, look for alternatives as discussed. If it is merely a personal opinion, there are ways to get the point across--but not professionally.
I suspect that this in itself could be a whole new thread in itself. Is the ideal planner one who is a proficient bureaucrat, one who knows the books and follows them explicitly (like Spock on Star Trek)? Days are filled with the minutia of zoning, plat approval, etc. Then away from work time is spent in a completely different activity (ex. fishing, family, etc.) but in no way ever thinking about work related matters (ex. the urban condition, sustainability, etc).
Or is it OK to allow personal feelings to influence our work and can we think about the big picture (even outside the next subdivision that crosses the desk)?
Should public officials be entirely guided by public input or opinion polls? Or is there a ground for the public official (bureaucrat, appointed, or elected) to use their own judgment and experience to guide decisions.
I obviously think that while public input is extremely important, if you don't want a thinking human to influence the process get rid of the humans and replace them with computers. IMHO having a personal opinion is OK and thinking about the big picture is good.
 

H

Cyburbian
Messages
2,846
Points
24
Runner said:
I suspect that this in itself could be a whole new thread in itself. Is the ideal planner one who is a proficient bureaucrat, one who knows the books and follows them explicitly (like Spock on Star Trek)? Days are filled with the minutia of zoning, plat approval, etc. Then away from work time is spent in a completely different activity (ex. fishing, family, etc.) but in no way ever thinking about work related matters (ex. the urban condition, sustainability, etc).
Or is it OK to allow personal feelings to influence our work and can we think about the big picture (even outside the next subdivision that crosses the desk)?
Should public officials be entirely guided by public input or opinion polls? Or is there a ground for the public official (bureaucrat, appointed, or elected) to use their own judgment and experience to guide decisions.
I obviously think that while public input is extremely important, if you don't want a thinking human to influence the process get rid of the humans and replace them with computers. IMHO having a personal opinion is OK and thinking about the big picture is good.

Yes, lets define the very word “planner”.

plan ner n.
Synonyms: plan, blueprint, design, project, scheme, strategy
These nouns denote a method or program in accordance with which something is to be done or accomplished: has no vacation plans; a blueprint for reorganizing the company; social conventions of human design; an urban-renewal project; a new scheme for conservation; a strategy for survival.

Source: The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth EditionCopyright © 2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company.Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved

Planner
\Plan"ner\, n. One who plans; a projector.

Source: Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, © 1996, 1998 MICRA, Inc.

Planner
n : a person who makes plans [syn: contriver, deviser]

Source: WordNet ® 1.6, © 1997 Princeton University
 

el Guapo

Capitalist
Messages
5,986
Points
31
jresta said:
...It's to say that drivers aren't paying for the full cost of their product....If your driving is diminishing the quality of my drinking water (as is normally associated with areas that are more than 12% impermeable cover not to mention all the drippings and exhaust from cars) and you are not paying for either the cleaning of said water or for trucking in clean water or for eliminating the cause of the problem, whichever costs more, then you are externalizing the cost of driving.

Your habit of living in a city - thus making my non-urban brethren feed you and your urban cohort of bureaucrats and bohemians - is affecting my drinking water out here in the sticks. See I can argue about your externalities too.

Your posting on this web site is the result of fossil fuel consumption. The delivery of medicine to you is the result of fossil fuel consumption. The harvesting of food you eat is a result of …you get it?

Unless you wrote your post in daylight on an Amish farm and used your computer whittled out of wood and powered by a hand crank, you’re impinging on my clean air Mr. Pedestrian/Mass Transit.

Separating your externalities from mine is an exercise in futility. You eat because we farm. According to you we drive becasue you pay for our roads. I don't think the total measured inflow and out flow of taxes from Missouri and Kansas would agree with that statement , but believe it all you wish. We are just greatful that you city fellers don't involve us hicks in more of your so~fistacated games.

PS I just realized that your argument is the perfect one against welfare and public assistance. Can I borrow it for my next Miltia meeting?
 

Runner

Cyburbian
Messages
566
Points
17
El Guapo said:
You're habit of living in a city - thus making my non-urban brethren feed you and your urban cohort of bureaucrats and bohemians - is affecting my drinking water out here in the sticks

Well, I'd have to argue that most of the folks living in the "country" are not eating much local produce/meat/fish either. The question, in my mind, becomes what uses do we want to prioritize for the use of fossil fuel and what ones should/could we reduce. Production of food = good, 16 yoa kid to drive to friends house to watch TV = not good. Alternatives for food production = few, Alternatives for 16 yoa transportation = many.
 

Runner

Cyburbian
Messages
566
Points
17
jtfortin said:
I guess this argument could go on for days and days so I will agree to disagree.

Cars Rule!!

Well, I won't argue that cars rule, your right they do. I will agree to disagree on whether that is a good thing or not.
 

donk

Cyburbian
Messages
6,961
Points
31
Not sure if this is the right thread to be posting this to, but with the discssions related to pollution and riding bikes here goes.



I love riding my bike, but will not claim that it is really all that environmentally fiendly. Here is why:

1) The paint on my mountain bike is Dupont Imron, the thing that makes the paint shine the way it does is pretty toxic to apply and dispose of.

2) The titanium in the bottom bracket, bolts and saddle rails takes far more energy and causes far more polution(chlorine gas) during refinining and manufacturing then it saves.

3) The kevlar beads in the tires (go through 4 tires per year minumum) is toxic to manufacture and does not readily degrade.

4) Can't recycle the tires.

5) The carbon fibre in my handle bar was probbaly pretty toxic to make and will not degrade.

6) The number of tubes I consume in a year is pretty high (15-20)

8) My road bike is carbon fibre.

9) I use CO2 cartridges to inflate my tires when I get a flat, it does say that the CO2 is from a volcano/naturaly occuring source.

10) The plastic base of my saddles won't break down event thought I only get 2 years out of a saddle. ( I have about 6 sitting in my partsa bin)

11) No way to recyle or dispose of responsibly the oil in my fork, that needs to be changed 2-3 times per year.












If you can't tell I am joking.
 

Repo Man

Cyburbian
Messages
2,545
Points
25
There seem to be three groups of people in the transportation debate:

Those who think the way to reduce dependence on oil by punishing drivers by raising gas taxes, licensing and registration fees or not expanding or improving roads.

Those who think that you need to make it conveinent and attractive for people to take mass transit, bike, or walk.

Those who don't give a damn. (90 percent of the population)
 

bestnightmare

Cyburbian
Messages
61
Points
4
jtfortin said:
There seem to be three groups of people in the transportation debate:

Those who think the way to reduce dependence on oil by punishing drivers by raising gas taxes, licensing and registration fees or not expanding or improving roads.

Those who think that you need to make it conveinent and attractive for people to take mass transit, bike, or walk.

Those who don't give a damn. (90 percent of the population)

exactly my point. let's raise the cost of driving so that folks actually would start to give a damn (and see what it really means to drive a 13mpg vehicle.)

-raise gas taxes.
-charge tolls are more roads.
-less subsidy for roadbuilding, more subsidy for mass transit.
-financial incentives for higher density, infill, and revitalization of existing communities.
-raise driving age to 18
-require more rigourous and extensive driving instruction for all.
 

gkmo62u

Cyburbian
Messages
1,046
Points
24
Here's a resonable proposal:

bestnightmare
huston
runner
jresta


Next public input opportunity at your respective elected board/supervisor/alderman/council meeting, get up and offer this exact program stated above and in this forum to your local officials. Infact, propose we abolish cars and every US citizen has , lets say 2 years to find an alternative lifestyle (living condition, job, family makeup etc...) that can accommadate the no car lifestyle.

Then you can go back to barking at the moon.
 

jresta

Cyburbian
Messages
1,474
Points
23
Your habit of living in a city - thus making my non-urban brethren feed you and your urban cohort of bureaucrats and bohemians - is affecting my drinking water out here in the sticks. See I can argue about your externalities too.

unless you live in CA, MD, NJ, PA, Ecuador, New Zealand, Ireland or France there's not much on my plate that comes from your neck of the woods. but alas, this is what i was talking about with the straw men . . .

Your posting on this web site is the result of fossil fuel consumption. The delivery of medicine to you is the result of fossil fuel consumption. The harvesting of food you eat is a result of …you get it?

the point here isn't that cars should not exist or that we shouldn't use fossil fuels. The argument is about a person's "right" to pollute as they see fit in the name of unnecessary car trips in unnecessarily large cars. The fact is that most people in this country don't live in "rural" areas and that most of those that do don't live on farms. The question is "why should it be necessary for anyone but a farmer living on a farm to drive 20 miles for a box of diapers?" So people can pretend to live a lifestyle that died 40 years ago?


Unless you wrote your post in daylight on an Amish farm and used your computer whittled out of wood and powered by a hand crank, you’re impinging on my clean air Mr. Pedestrian/Mass Transit.

i'll entertain your scarecrow for a minute - If you really want to know the electricity powering this computer is coming from the Limerick Nuclear Generating Station just up the river, the "trash to steam" plant across the river and a (natural) gas fired plant just down the river. But like i said, this argument was never about ending the use of fossil fuels. It's about subsidizing (economically) unsustainable practices.

Separating your externalities from mine is an exercise in futility. You eat because we farm. According to you we drive becasue you pay for our roads. I don't think the total measured inflow and out flow of taxes from Missouri and Kansas would agree with that statement , but believe it all you wish. We are just greatful that you city fellers don't involve us hicks in more of your so~fistacated games.

It's not a matter of what i believe. If you don't think Kansas and Missouri are net recipients of federal largess you can just check with Mr. Forbes and i'm sure he'll set you straight. The Northeastern, Pacific, and upper Mid-West states have been carrying the rest of the country for years now. In 2000* Kansas received $1.06 in federal money for every $1 its residents paid. Missouri took in $1.36 for every dollar it paid out. (*the most recent year i could find figures)

Moving along - most of the grain grown in the midwest goes to feed animals and most of the rest goes to large mills to be processed for breakfast cereal and wonderbread. Since I don't eat animals and the amount of frosted flakes and wonderbread i eat is, i can assure you, extremely limited - your rural lifestyle isn't doing much to add to what's on my plate.

PS I just realized that your argument is the perfect one against welfare and public assistance. Can I borrow it for my next Miltia meeting?

Any talk of welfare should be balanced against your state's Federal Tax Burden - and i'll remind you that NJ brought home 66 cents for every dollar its people/businesses paid out in federal taxes.

p.s. - i'll let you borrow the argument but just remember that it was patented by my militia so don't get carried away.
 

giff57

Corn Burning Fool
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
5,456
Points
34
jresta said:
Moving along - most of the grain grown in the midwest goes to feed animals and most of the rest goes to large mills to be processed for breakfast cereal and wonderbread. Since I don't eat animals and the amount of frosted flakes and wonderbread i eat is, i can assure you, extremely limited - your rural lifestyle isn't doing much to add to what's on my plate.


Just what do you eat?
 

Repo Man

Cyburbian
Messages
2,545
Points
25
jresta said:
The question is "why should it be necessary for anyone but a farmer living on a farm to drive 20 miles for a box of diapers?" So people can pretend to live a lifestyle that died 40 years ago?

What lifestyle is that? Living out in the country? It comes down to personal choices. People who chose to live in the country should not be ashamed that they don't like the City. Nor should they be punished by the "I know what's best for you" crowd. If someone wants to live 20 miles from the nearest grocery store who are we to tell them that their lifestyle is wrong?

I live in the City. I chose to live in the City because I am walking or biking distance to all kinds of parks, stores, restaurants, etc. I like the fact that I walk to the grocery store, the liquor store, the local CD shop and countless bars and restaurants. I can get to downtown Milwaukee in 10 minutes on my bike. I will probably never live in the outer-ring suburbs in a subdivision with 5 acre lots and no sidewalks, but as much as that lifestyle is not for me I will not tell someone that it "wrong" to live in the suburbs and drive 30 miles to work each day.
 

H

Cyburbian
Messages
2,846
Points
24
jresta said:

unless you live in CA, MD, NJ, PA, Ecuador, New Zealand, Ireland or France there's not much on my plate that comes from your neck of the woods. but alas, this is what i was talking about with the straw men . . .


What are you eating/drinking from Ecuador?

Just curious because I have been involved with a project there in relation to the economy.
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,069
Points
34
My "farm" lifestyle is a personal choice that may require me to drive further and more often, but also enables me to grow 30+ different organic fruits and vegetables. I have comented before on my prairie restoration and 70+ bird species that use my yard. It is very easy, but not at all accurate to paint things in black and white; i.e., city living and transit are all good and anything else is bad. The reality is there are good and bad elements to everything. We need to look for, and see the shades of gray.
 

jresta

Cyburbian
Messages
1,474
Points
23
I can see everyone had fun with my last post so to reply:

bananas and some juices that i drink sometimes wind up being from ecuador. The produce that i see from there has a strong organic representation, i was surprised.

I never said that living in the sticks was wrong. I never said that living in the city was right. In fact i've done nothing but repeatedly and pointedly ask people to stop constructing straw men. The fist step in that direction might be to stop taking lines out of context.

This urban/rural nonsense is not just a straw man but it's also a false dichotomy. I didn't say "no one should live in the country" I said "why should anyone have to drive 20 miles to a grocery store?" I think it possible to live a sufficiently rural lifestyle and still not be more than 10 miles from some type of convenience store.

Sure it's not for me to say where anyone lives. I wouldn't dream of doing it. I'm just asking people to stop pretending that living a psuedo-rustic lifestyle (i'm not talking about farmers here) is a personal choice that affects no one but the person making the decision when that is clearly not the case.

To clarify, the people who live a truly rural lifestyle, who were born and raised and work in rural counties are barely the issue here. It's people who live in urbanized counties but move to an adjacent rural county to "get away" but continue their daily trek into the urban county for work and other "necessities".

I hope the question asking "what do you eat" wasn't serious but just in case:

Maybe all you eat is frosted flakes, wonderbread, and cattle feed - and hey if you like that stuff, more power to ya - but i would try a different grocery store if that's all they offer.
 

el Guapo

Capitalist
Messages
5,986
Points
31
Originally posted by jresta
...I said "why should anyone have to drive 20 miles to a grocery store?" I think it possible to live a sufficiently rural lifestyle and still not be more than 10 miles from some type of convenience store.

You need to get out more. Having lived in the sticks your quote is laughable. No strawman here. Just us hicks laughing at your ignorace of the rest of the nation.

Sure it's not for me to say where anyone lives. I wouldn't dream of doing it. I'm just asking people to stop pretending that living a psuedo-rustic lifestyle (i'm not talking about farmers here) is a personal choice that affects no one but the person making the decision when that is clearly not the case.

Ok, in some small way my choices "affect you." GET OVER IT

To clarify, the people who live a truly rural lifestyle, who were born and raised and work in rural counties are barely the issue here. It's people who live in urbanized counties but move to an adjacent rural county to "get away" but continue their daily trek into the urban county for work and other "necessities".

Acthtung - Zee volk must show zer papers to farhen to zum hinterland, verhstehen sie?


Dude, you are one scarry guy. Next election, I'm picking your vote to cancel.

Now is where you get to say STRAWMAN again. Enjoy.
 

jresta

Cyburbian
Messages
1,474
Points
23
You need to get out more. Having lived in the sticks your quote is laughable. No strawman here. Just us hicks laughing at your ignorace of the rest of the nation.

I lived about an hour north of Jeff City, on a farm, until i was 7. I remember it well. Even been back to visit. I've lived all over the south. I know what it looks like. Sorry if we don't all live in Wyoming at a density of >2 ppm


Ok, in some small way my choices "affect you." GET OVER IT

Sorry, I thought this thread was about taxing peoples personal choices or something. My fault.


Acthtung - Zee volk must show zer papers to farhen to zum hinterland, verhstehen sie?

If you can show contempt for zee stadtvolk and bohemian bureaucrats then i have no problem with showing my contempt for wannabe cowboys.

Dude, you are one scarry guy. Next election, I'm picking your vote to cancel.

yeah, people that disagree with you are dangerous and scary - what was that clever german fascist reference again?

Now is where you get to say STAWMAN again. Enjoy.

ad hominem
 

giff57

Corn Burning Fool
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
5,456
Points
34
jresta said:
I hope the question asking "what do you eat" wasn't serious but just in case:

Maybe all you eat is frosted flakes, wonderbread, and cattle feed - and hey if you like that stuff, more power to ya - but i would try a different grocery store if that's all they offer.


Really, I was quite serious. I want to know what you eat. I have a hard time with your claim that very little you eat comes from american agriculture. Maybe you don't eat corn products, but I'm sure there is some soy protein in your diet. If not, well, then I am off base.
 

Runner

Cyburbian
Messages
566
Points
17
gkmo62u said:
Then you can go back to barking at the moon.

Actually, I prefer howling at the moon over barking ;)

Which of my ideas would destroy the peace and security of our nation and life as we know it?

jtfortin said:
I will not tell someone that it "wrong" to live in the suburbs and drive 30 miles to work each day.

OK, I will :)
Unless of course they're "driving" a bicycle.
Well OK for the benefit of Michael Stumpf I'll accept some shades of grey. If your living lightly in the "country" and car pooling or driving a "rice sipper" maybe its not really really bad. But if they're driving a behemoth SUV by themselves, bad bad ju ju...
 
Last edited:

Runner

Cyburbian
Messages
566
Points
17
El Guapo said:
Can I borrow it for my next Miltia meeting?

Hah, LOL, you know what those people do to persons who show up to their get togethers driving a Volvo ;)
 

gkmo62u

Cyburbian
Messages
1,046
Points
24
Runner--got me mixing metaphors again but I was actually thinking of Ozzy at the time I wrote that...

Guap--This has been a painful thread until your Strawman comment. I am literally LOL right this second.

rack this!
 

H

Cyburbian
Messages
2,846
Points
24
gkmo62u said:
Here's a resonable proposal:

bestnightmare
huston
runner
jresta


Next public input opportunity at your respective elected board/supervisor/alderman/council meeting, get up and offer this exact program stated above and in this forum to your local officials. Infact, propose we abolish cars and every US citizen has , lets say 2 years to find an alternative lifestyle (living condition, job, family makeup etc...) that can accommadate the no car lifestyle.

Then you can go back to barking at the moon.

It is truly wonderful to see so many closed minded people on this thread in regards to alternative transportation opportunities (not all people, of course).

I have read over this forum again, and nowhere does anyone say ban the car. All I see are imaginative and creative (and yes, sometimes extreme) ways to “even” out the playing field to the current auto-dominate policy that we currently have. (I am not going restate the ongoing list of reasons why that have already been posted to this thread; that would not be productive).

Sure, many of the ideas posted are extreme and not feasible; I believe most who post extreme ideas are fully aware of this fact. But isn’t that what the purpose of discussing and brainstorming is all about? Throwing out all kind of ideas and ideals, flushing out the reasonable and feasible and finding those that might be beneficial to society? If you are not creative and do not think differently, you will never find alternatives or answers, and maybe that is okay for you.

However, just because you are satisfied with the status quo, does not make it the best option for society.

It is not very productive to society to sit and ridicule people for thinking different and expressing new ideas. Unfortunately, this often happens with ideas that go against the status quo; it is easy to do and any Neanderthal or elementary school yard kid can do it. Maybe we should all just fall in line and accept the status quo and take what we are given, and stop whining about trying to walk, ride our bikes, take the train, save the environment or doing whatever we believe in. And wouldn’t that be a sad world, where no one thought differently…
 

bestnightmare

Cyburbian
Messages
61
Points
4
gkmo62u said:
Here's a resonable proposal:

bestnightmare
huston
runner
jresta


Next public input opportunity at your respective elected board/supervisor/alderman/council meeting, get up and offer this exact program stated above and in this forum to your local officials. Infact, propose we abolish cars and every US citizen has , lets say 2 years to find an alternative lifestyle (living condition, job, family makeup etc...) that can accommadate the no car lifestyle.

Then you can go back to barking at the moon.

i never mentioned anything relating to 'banning' cars. i can tell by your post that you're probably not the most receptive person to new ideas about creating non-auto-dependent communities, revitalizing existing ones, and making this a convenient and attractive lifestyle.

you, of course, are free to live how you see fit. for example, we're all free to live in a sprawling exurban subdivision miles away from any town or commerical area and drive our SUV's at least several miles just to pick something up at the store. somehow (for another time, another thread) the american public has been led to believe that this is the ideal lifestyle for families. we need to wake up from this dream, folks. the research has been done, and the results are clear. the environmental devastation of roadbuilding, runoff, and idling, gridlocked traffic; the social and economic costs of segregation, and abandonment of existing urban areas far, far outweigh any perceived benefits of a big house on a big piece of property in a sparsely populated area.

this is not social engineering. all markets are artificially created. the market for the surburban car-based lifestyle was largely manufactured after WWII. we see the problems it causes, and it's time to fix it by creating a new market for non-auto dependent living.
 

gkmo62u

Cyburbian
Messages
1,046
Points
24
best:

you could not be more wrong about me. I am absolutely open to any new lifestyle choice offered, including more urban, dense, pedestrian oriented communties. We should encourage all of the things. Encourage, not require, not coerce, not extort. This brings the arguement full circle for me. My position is that some arbitrary increase in the gas tax expressly proffered to make it more costly and more regrssive by nature is not good public policy and just an effort to force a particular lifestyle.

I do take offense generally by attacks on the suburban lifestyle and clear anti-suburban bias. I hold no such urban bias. I love urban life and have lived in a couple of great cities. That happens often in Cyburbia and there are countless threads illustrative of the fact. IMHO most planners think that the American public has been hoodwinked by the Government or Detroit or by national homebuilders into the suburban lifestyle that they forget are characterized by good schools and safe streets. Your comments bear this out.

The American consumer is so much smarter than you think.
 

rantanamo

Member
Messages
1
Points
0
I'm new to participating in these discussions, but have been reading for a good while now. I must say that I agree that there is negative to all situations. BUT, the american consumer is not smart at all. The products we buy have told that story repeatedly in comparison to our foreign counterparts. We as American consumers (and producers) are far too often about price, price, price to be truly smart consumers.
 

el Guapo

Capitalist
Messages
5,986
Points
31
Sorry to be such an Neanderthal, non-open minded planner (“And wouldn’t that be a sad world, where no one thought differently…”) A world where we all thought how evil the car was and how everyone that was not as enlightened as ourselves needed to be punished by an oppressive governmental system that produced the perfect society. Where is my black turlteneck?

I think the social engineers lost the high ground when this was posted: "I don't know why so many Americans insist on acting like spoiled teenagers. "I can do whatever I want!" No, you can't, and for good reason. You can do what you want insofar as it doesn't have a negative effect on someone else." Where is the Yellow Card of Strawperson?

Externalities are an unpleasant fact-of-life. I'm going to live my life as I see fit. Normally the golden rule works fine for me and those around me. If you try legislating my life into your world view, please don't mind when I do my best to have your lives end up on the receiving end of a worldview I think most of you would consider scary. Please remember it would be a sad world if all planners thought like, well the majority of planners. I refuse to wear the ribbon.

Was there a strawwomen/person in here somewhere?
(Sorry Reds)

Hey Gitmo – They think you are not open minded buddy. You’re not “receptive” enough. Not that there is anything wrong with that.
 

jresta

Cyburbian
Messages
1,474
Points
23
giff57
Really, I was quite serious. I want to know what you eat. I have a hard time with your claim that very little you eat comes from american agriculture. Maybe you don't eat corn products, but I'm sure there is some soy protein in your diet. If not, well, then I am off base.


I didn't claim that I don't eat ANY american sourced products. In fact, I didn't say that at all. If you'll notice, the first four places I mentioned were CA, MD, PA, and NJ and now on second thought you can throw NY and OR in there as well.

I was trying to point out that little of what I eat comes from those "rural" states of the "nation's breadbasket" and that if they were to all of the sudden stop trading with us urban folk (HYPOTHETICALLY, of course, lest anyone else get bent out of shape over what's supposed to be a theoretical, intellectual discussion), all other things equal, my refrigerator wouldn't be thrown into a tizzy.

My grocery store goes out if it's way to source locally and clearly labels where all of it's produce, juices, dairy, and bulk grain comes from and information on any individual farm is available upon request. I'm very much aware of where my food comes from. It matters to me so I pay attention to it.

As for what i eat, mostly it's fruits and vegetables from the places I mentioned here and the foreign sources I mentioned in the previous post. Cheese that comes from Ireland or France and occasionally from NY or WI. Breads and other grains are organic 95% of the time and come mostly from OR and WA, sometimes from CA, and occasionally from Canada or Europe. Rice is normally from SC or CA. When i can't buy them organic I usually just do without that particular kind until the organic stuff is back on the shelf.

Soy doesn't agree with me so I avoid it. That's not to say I never eat ANY soy products, but again, if it were suddenly cut from my diet I doubt I'd lose any weight over it. But soy in this country, like corn, is grown mostly as livestock feed. Over 2/3 of american grain production is for livestock. That goes for corn and soy as it does for canola and cottonseed. Corn? Never been a fan of canned corn and i haven't seen grits since the army. Fresh corn is grown locally and that's usually the only time i'll eat it.

Most of what's organic out there, and most produce in general, just doesn't come from the prairie. It comes from the west coast and northeast and WI and MN. I choose to eat that way because I don't think turning petroleum into calories, via inputs of petroleum based pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, and fertilizers as well as the large gas guzzling machinery required for said applications is a healthy way to produce food, much less eat it.

*my server is down temporarily and since this is the last time i'm going to post on this thread i'll add this - because this thread isn't about what food i eat or where it comes from:

"the point here is NOT that cars should not exist or that we shouldn't use fossil fuels."
"The argument is about a person's percieved "right" to pollute as he or she sees fit in the name of unnecessary car trips in unnecessarily large cars. "
"But like i said, this argument was never about ending the use of fossil fuels. It's about subsidizing (economically) unsustainable practices."

so to get back to the topic, in all seriousness, someone please provide the legal/ constitutional justification for polluting as one sees fit

and/or

why we should continue to subsidize practices and lifestyles that are not economically and, coincidentally, environmentally viable . . . and that will be a logical answer to why we shouldn't tax gas consumption more heavily.

If you feel i'm begging the question, frame it in your own way but the answer should be the justification for not raising gas taxes.
 

Tranplanner

maudit anglais
Messages
7,938
Points
39
It's been a good discussion for the most part people, but it's starting to get away from the original question and move into a debate about "lifestyles" that is more suited to the FAC. We've been through these before and if anything the only thing we've proved is that cyburbanites lead a diverse range of lifestyles, and that everybody has a different set of priorities that lead them to live the way they do. No use trying to change that, though the arguments from both sides can be fun (at times).

I don't want to kill off discussion here, but let's try to stick to the point, eh?
 

el Guapo

Capitalist
Messages
5,986
Points
31
Well, I must admit by my third post I was just out to upset the reds. Therefore, I will take my lumps and confess my crimes against Cyburbia. ;)

[ot]That doesn't mean I don't think these commie planners are going to run us into the ground with their pedtopian(Copyright ~ el Guapo 2003) manifestos.[/ot]

(Sorry Karl)
 

Budgie

Cyburbian
Messages
5,262
Points
30
El Guapo Alive and Kicking

El Guapo and I have been down this road before.
 
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