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mugrim
Mar 2, 2007

"You know when they tell you about 'the man'

That's me.

I'm 'The man'"

Often in gun control debates, people are very quick to whip out "Well a gun is a useful tool that kills less people than cars, and you're not for banning cars are you?"

This thread here is to present an argument for "Well actually, banning cars in general would probably be a great asset to our country as well."

I'll tackle this from multiple perspectives on it's influence.

1) Lethality - Around 1 in every 10,000 Americans die each year due to an auto accident. Emotionally these deaths seem to carry far less weight than other deaths outside the immediately affected parties than other things and we consider them in a different context because of our car culture. Note the fact that accident was in the intro sentence to this paragraph and chances are you didn't blink twice about it, despite the fact that each year roughly a third of those are effectively manslaughter (of others or self) as the operator is drunk according to the CDC. You remember the weight loss drug Fen Phen that people flipped their poo poo about and wanted instantly banned due to it's dangerous nature? It had roughly a 1 in 417,000 chance of killing you, over 40 times less likely to the people using it than simply being an American anywhere near the road. Speaking of Fen Phen...

2) Health - This country is massive, and I don't just mean geographically. We like to throw out HFCS as the reason we're fat, or cheap sugar, or a million other reasons, but on a baseline we walk less than other countries (there's a really good journal article out there specifying that Americans walk like half as much as the runner up for 'least walking', if anyone can find it please post it). The one exercise almost everyone has to do is severely limited and cut off. Walking is culturally perceived as a thing for poor people or the high elite socialites in large cities. It's nearly impossible in most places to go to a bar or a party and get home without driving. Taxis are pretty much prohibitively expensive at this point to make any kind of regular use of outside of areas that are so dense that a low fare will get you somewhere fast. Note that many countries who have great public transportation as the baseline transportation still require walking more because you still need to get to the bus/train/whatever.

3) Infrastructure - Simply put, foot traffic fucks up infrastructure a lot less than vehicular traffic, and designing cities around cars actually cuts them up from being cohesive units.

4) Freedom of movement - Cars restrict freedom of movement. With an even moderately designed public transportation and railway/airline system you can get pretty much anywhere you want with minimal costs, but a car creates several barriers to entry. You have a driver's license which simultaneously doesn't weed anyone out if they have the money to keep applying and wait for lucking out while also keeping those with the greatest levels of poverty from accessing the ability to travel to large sections of the United states. Then you have insurance which requires a degree of stability many Americans simply can't afford. The car allows freedom of movement only when you have one and society has been designed around having one. With foot traffic as the assumed mode of transportation for the vast majority of people

5) The disabled and elderly - Contrary to popular belief, cars are generally bad for both of these groups. Many people are disabled enough that they can't drive, but are capable of holding jobs. For these people they require an extensive set of services to do everything in their lives. The elderly are often in a similar boat where they are capable of being independent so long as they don't drive anywhere.

6) Children - Children in America are essentially caged up and completely unable to do even the smallest tasks on their own, which is why people flip their poo poo when they turn 16, because now you get to do something that in many places you would have started doing at half that age. Walking is prohibitively dangerous for children of the poor and prohibitively difficult for the exurbian affluent.

7) Organization and Civil planning - Making walkways and decent public transportation does something that we're very scared of as a nation despite being a positive step for us: It forces us to give a poo poo where we drop massive groups of homes as well as the businesses people need to work at. The proliferation of disposable communities has created an extremely toxic set of values and systems, especially in regards to education, utilities, and safety.

8) Money - Ultimately the final point for everything, Americans chuck money into their vehicles like there's no tomorrow. The shear amount of money lost to something you have to purchase (ironically moreso than healthcare for many) is absurd for what is ultimately a dangerous cultural preference.

So now the question becomes "What can we do? What policies would help change this?

In terms of major changes it would probably require:

1) Granting cities greater ability to annex enclaves and exurban tax havens.
2) Massive federal subsidies
3) Loosening up a lot of zoning laws, especially archaic ones that often make the set up of "Business one floor, home on second" impossible.
4) Allowing utility companies to begin charging new development for expanding the grid
5) Gradually up the requirements on driving exams to actually require it to take a modicum of skill to get on the road (Note, in such a system I'm not sure I would qualify to drive, but then again I wouldn't want to)

There would undeniably be tons of people who were pissed off. Rural communities would be hit hard, though there would be lots of ways to cushion the blow for them. The upper middle class would probably revolt over the inability to keep certain people out of their schools or certain home owners out of their neighborhood.

What do you think? Is the sacrificial lamb of one of every ten thousand Americans really worth it? Is car culture dangerous or are we simply dangerous and cars are how we express it? What are the moral dimensions involved?

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Bread Zeppelin
Aug 2, 2006
Stairway to Leaven

Speaking of health, air pollution is another health risk from cars. Right now Salt Lake City is on its way to becoming the Shanghai of the west and most of that smog comes from cars. I would propose increasing fuel inversely proportional to air quality with the proceeds going towards subsidizing public transportation.

Only registered members can see post attachments!

computer parts
Nov 18, 2010


Obtuse Cunt.
Please Do Not Engage.
Will bore you and everyone else with inane questions.




Most of the issues surrounding car culture are already being disincentivized due to high fuel costs. There are the issues of electric cars or hybrids, but the technology associated with them will make those a luxury good for some time.

The issue I find with your plan in particular are the license requirements, because you're only thinking about city life. There are plenty of non-commercial reasons that someone would need a car even with good public transportation (for example, tourism) that simply raising license requirements would be very harmful.

As a specific example, one of the main ways that the National Parks are justified is "you visited this now, so please support it so your grand/kids can see it in the future". That disappears if people are unable to visit locations due to license requirements, and/or it will also require the parks to setup expensive transportation infrastructure to get people to the parks (it also effectively kills things like camping even with a shuttle into the park).

Job Truniht
Nov 7, 2012

MY POSTS ARE REAL RETARDED, SIR

Bread Zeppelin posted:

Speaking of health, air pollution is another health risk from cars. Right now Salt Lake City is on its way to becoming the Shanghai of the west and most of that smog comes from cars. I would propose increasing fuel inversely proportional to air quality with the proceeds going towards subsidizing public transportation.



PM 2.5 is associated with diesel engines and black carbon emissions. Trucks are heavily regulated by the EPA in Colorado for this reason.

agarjogger
May 16, 2011


I'm very curious about the auto's role in atomizing and factionalizing the people of the USA. Putting greater distance in between people, and protecting them from having to experience strangers doesn't even begin to describe it. That's a cake we aren't unbaking, along with most of the rest of the car's legacy.

I'd agree that car proliferation has taken more than it's given. People aren't addicted to oil. People loving hate driving. It's Exxon that is addicted to us, and would start a loving war on us if we ever started imagining a world in which they weren't a country-sized company.

Shifty Pony
Dec 28, 2004

Up ta somethin'


Job Truniht posted:

PM 2.5 is associated with diesel engines and black carbon emissions. Trucks are heavily regulated by the EPA in Colorado for this reason.

All new diesel engines nationwide are equipped with large inline exhaust filters to trap (and regularly burn off) particulate emissions, at the expense of efficiency.

ductonius
Apr 9, 2007
I heard there's a cream for that...

agarjogger posted:

People loving hate driving.

People hate living anywhere near "those people" more than they hate driving.

mugrim
Mar 2, 2007

"You know when they tell you about 'the man'

That's me.

I'm 'The man'"

computer parts posted:

Most of the issues surrounding car culture are already being disincentivized due to high fuel costs. There are the issues of electric cars or hybrids, but the technology associated with them will make those a luxury good for some time.

I would disagree on the point that it's currently being disincentivized. Oil in America is actually pretty cheap. It's currently over 10 bucks a gallon in London and more elsewhere in the world. The only places that really get it cheaper are those that have nationalized their reserves and those with strong ties to nearby countries that have gone that path.

computer parts posted:

The issue I find with your plan in particular are the license requirements, because you're only thinking about city life.

There's a reason for that. Developing policy entirely around exceptions to the rule and things you do with very small amounts of your time is pretty inefficient.

computer parts posted:

There are plenty of non-commercial reasons that someone would need a car even with good public transportation (for example, tourism) that simply raising license requirements would be very harmful.

As a specific example, one of the main ways that the National Parks are justified is "you visited this now, so please support it so your grand/kids can see it in the future". That disappears if people are unable to visit locations due to license requirements, and/or it will also require the parks to setup expensive transportation infrastructure to get people to the parks (it also effectively kills things like camping even with a shuttle into the park).

If the goal is tourism in state parks, there could be specialty rental vehicles that have a minor licensing requirement, the same way you do with boats.

In fact, many pedestrian friendly cities already do this with small motor electric vehicle rentals.

McAlister
Nov 2, 2002


mugrim posted:


If the goal is tourism in state parks, there could be specialty rental vehicles that have a minor licensing requirement, the same way you do with boats.

In fact, many pedestrian friendly cities already do this with small motor electric vehicle rentals.


This crosses the streams with your initial thesis. You noted the danger of driving with inadequate training. This danger could only increase if people became less experienced at driving. Lowering the licensing requirement for camping type vehicles for people not used to driving at all ...

Having a last-mile shuttle service to the nearest urban areas ( like ski-train ) makes more sense to me. And issue every camper a radio or get cell coverage over the entire parks.

Did I mention ski-train is awesome?

Dusseldorf
Mar 29, 2005



computer parts posted:

Most of the issues surrounding car culture are already being disincentivized due to high fuel costs. There are the issues of electric cars or hybrids, but the technology associated with them will make those a luxury good for some time.

Fuel is a cost that is probably semi elastic although it's not being "disincentivized" compared to the damage burning a gallon of gas causes through air pollution. There are a lot of other costs of driving that are hidden or collectivized like road construction. It's not that these shouldn't be built but America in general strongly has a solo-car-driving over all else transportation policy.

ronya
Nov 8, 2010


Could always tax the right to own and use a car for ten years at a cool 75,000 USD.

That additionally ensures that virtually all cars on the road will be new and advanced enough to use the latest in environmental tech.

enraged_camel
Jul 4, 2007
Can't make ends meet in the US? Move to Australia! If you need to ask about things such as "economic feasibility" and "logistics" you're just lazy and entitled and better looking than I am

If you're going to take away my car, there better be a bus stop within a few blocks from my house that has buses come every 5-10 minutes (24/7) that can take me where I want to go in the same amount of time that my car can.

semper wifi
Oct 31, 2007


Even assuming you could unite the nation behind the concept of "leave the car behind", I don't think it'd be feasible. You'd have to build an incredibly robust public transport network in every suburb and small city, everywhere. I don't know what your experience with smaller towns is, but walking a mile plus for a bus that comes every hour (and only goes to mini-mall type areas or other public transit) or so is about as good as it gets in those places. Probably the easiest way to achieve this would be some kind of forced urbanization, which is pretty far fetched. The idea that getting rid of the car would somehow stop the middle class from "keeping those people out of ..." and usher in some kind of new racial or class harmony is pure fantasy. Plus the higher the requirements for a driver's license, the worse off poor people would be, unless we have the Ideal Public Transit System in place when that happens.

edit: Personally I have no problem with the idea, not having to have a car would be pretty neat I think - but getting by without one is impossible in the vast majority of the country.

semper wifi fucked around with this message at Dec 16, 2013 around 06:37

psychic chasms
Oct 23, 2012


I think the closest thing we're going to see regarding changing American car culture in our lifetimes is the proliferation of self-driving cars and networks to support them. It doesn't get rid of cars or pollution, but a computer-controlled vehicle can be engineered to operate with a higher level of efficiency and will spend less time idling in traffic (since most jams are caused by human cognitive biases and wrecks). Plus, self-driving cars accommodate the American desire for private ownership, if necessary. Not that I'd rule out something like fleets of self-driving cars available for hourly rental, kind of like what hertz is doing right now. Isn't Google loving around with driverless cars already?

PT6A
Jan 5, 2006



I think the real problem is moving from an ability to go car-free most of the time to being realistically able to go car-free all of the time. I live downtown, in a fairly walkable area, and most nearby areas are well-served by public transit. I haven't used my car in weeks because I've simply had no need or desire to do so. I've taken a taxi several times, but I suppose this would still be an option in a mostly car-free society. The real issue comes with accessing areas which are not well-served by transit, even if I only need to do it once a month or something. $60 cab rides are no fun. A 90 minute bus ride with a connection when it's -14 also sucks. Currently, the best option to deal with this is car-sharing programs like Car2Go, but depending on how much you wanted to restrict car ownership and licensing, this might not be feasible.

On another topic; why haven't any North American cities done anything like congestion charging? I feel like that would be a good way to incentivize transit use, and the money you collect could be used to fund transit infrastructure.

Plinkey
Aug 4, 2004

Can't we all just be friends?


PT6A posted:

On another topic; why haven't any North American cities done anything like congestion charging? I feel like that would be a good way to incentivize transit use, and the money you collect could be used to fund transit infrastructure.

Some kinda do this but it's more of a highway/toll system. In places like LA the cost changes based on congestion. They are free if you're car pooling.

http://articles.latimes.com/2011/ju...-lanes-20110707

Jst0rm
Sep 16, 2012

the fact you all think I made this and I am trying to self promote it to the 1300 people who read this subforum is a indication of the quality of my work


Self driving cars are going to be the future. You can put more of them on the roads and at higher speeds when you remove the human from the process. I don't think we will get rid of the car in this country but we can certainly get ride of the driver. I would love to check my mail, read and watch something while my car drives me somewhere.

agarjogger
May 16, 2011


Jst0rm posted:

Self driving cars are going to be the future. You can put more of them on the roads and at higher speeds when you remove the human from the process. I don't think we will get rid of the car in this country but we can certainly get ride of the driver.

:Self driving cars will become roadtrains led by windbreaking pilot cars
:cars+pilot will merge into a bus
:buses will get their own lanes
:12' concrete buslane will reduce to two parallel steel rails
oops we made a train!!
Mass inability to confront this embarrassment is why progress is a lie and Silicon Valley types are wrong about everything they set their minds to. It will never ever, ever make any sense to have 3,000,000 engines firing at once in a city, where 4,000 would do.

quote:

I would love to check my mail, read and watch something while my car drives me somewhere.

Who wouldn't? How hugely pleasurable. Unfortunately if your job can be done from a computer or telephone, that won't be happening. You'll just be starting work an hour early just like every sad gently caress on the 6:40 express. If you have a boss, your gains in efficiency do not belong to you and never will.

Xaris
Jul 25, 2006
GTVA Celois

PT6A posted:

On another topic; why haven't any North American cities done anything like congestion charging? I feel like that would be a good way to incentivize transit use, and the money you collect could be used to fund transit infrastructure.

They do. But it's a really lovely thing to do and defeats the purpose of carpool lanes? Traffic is at least an 'equalizer' (in that it encourages both rich and poor to support more public transit because nobody wants to be wasting time idling on the road) but this mostly just says "hey you're rich, come fly past these poors and laugh!" and isn't a good way of raising revenue.

Much like raising sales tax or gas tax, it seems like a good idea until you look at the socioeconomic impacts on who it really disparages.

Xaris fucked around with this message at Dec 16, 2013 around 08:27

on the left
Nov 2, 2013


Jst0rm posted:

Self driving cars are going to be the future. You can put more of them on the roads and at higher speeds when you remove the human from the process. I don't think we will get rid of the car in this country but we can certainly get ride of the driver. I would love to check my mail, read and watch something while my car drives me somewhere.

If electric autonomous cars are the future, why would cars drive faster? Slower speeds to maximize battery efficiency seem much more likely until battery technology improves. This would also minimize the downsides of failures in autonomous vehicle technology and improve longevity of wear items. It would probably still be a similar speed overall if you can maintain a steady pace rather than stop and go.

agarjogger
May 16, 2011


on the left posted:

If electric autonomous cars are the future, why would cars drive faster? Slower speeds to maximize battery efficiency seem much more likely until battery technology improves. This would also minimize the downsides of failures in autonomous vehicle technology and improve longevity of wear items. It would probably still be a similar speed overall if you can maintain a steady pace rather than stop and go.

They could, but only if they're not actually autonomous at all, and are actually networked like Minority Report. Self-driving cars that are talking to each other can operate much closer to each other (drafting, occupying so much of the freeway that there's little air left to break). They could go the same speed for less gas, or they could go much faster for the same gas. Computers could potentially initiate the dunce's solution to gridlock, "Hey, what if we all stepped on the gas right the gently caress now, and went instead of stopped!"

ronya
Nov 8, 2010


agarjogger posted:

:Self driving cars will become roadtrains led by windbreaking pilot cars
:cars+pilot will merge into a bus
:buses will get their own lanes
:12' concrete buslane will reduce to two parallel steel rails
oops we made a train!!
Mass inability to confront this embarrassment is why progress is a lie and Silicon Valley types are wrong about everything they set their minds to. It will never ever, ever make any sense to have 3,000,000 engines firing at once in a city, where 4,000 would do.

On the other hand, that implies a much more intricate layouts of underlying rail networks, so that it's actually cost-effective to lastmile every bit of it.

dilbertschalter
Jan 12, 2010


agarjogger posted:

:Self driving cars will become roadtrains led by windbreaking pilot cars
:cars+pilot will merge into a bus
:buses will get their own lanes
:12' concrete buslane will reduce to two parallel steel rails
oops we made a train!!
Mass inability to confront this embarrassment is why progress is a lie and Silicon Valley types are wrong about everything they set their minds to. It will never ever, ever make any sense to have 3,000,000 engines firing at once in a city, where 4,000 would do.

I mean... no. There are a lot benefits to trains, but cars still have huge advantages in terms of convenience, particularly in spread out areas. That's not to say that there shouldn't be more trains or that more sprawl should be encouraged (it shouldn't), but the train of thought you lay out doesn't address some of the main reasons cars are preferred to trains.

Ardennes
May 12, 2002

It is always about people.


A mixed lay out is better, the issue is that heavy rail coverage is so pathetic in the US. One of the few things that actually makes the former Soviet Union livable is that major cities have metro systems or at least tram systems (still) and the cities are laid out for pedestrians.

The issue is dollar and cents investment and most American cities beyond maybe New York need a giant expansion of rail even if autonomous cars came about. One thing is not everyone is going to afford autonomous cars, and many road systems are already maxed out.

Anyway, the discussion isn't about getting rid of cars but whether investment in the future should be amount doubling down on car culture or public transportation. Frankly, I say the US has build out its car infrastructure about as far as it can at this point, and autonomous cars may bring some more efficient but not enough to "save" the system. Autonomous cars aren't going to fix LA or Atlanta, sorry.

ReV VAdAUL
Oct 3, 2004

I'm WILD about
WILDMAN


Given how corrupt the whole system is these days I can't help but worry that if we get petrol/diesel autonomous vehicles the network operator and fuel companies will collude to lower efficiency for mutual profit.

Regardless though good public transport and walking infrastructure can really pay off. I live in York in the UK which is a small city that is held up as an example of how to reduce car use in cities. Most of the centre bans everything but delivery vehicles and public transport during the day. There is decent public transport late into the night (though sadly not for exurbs) and there's an hourly bus to my suburb that takes me directly to the centre and a 20 minute walk to a more regular bus. Either bus takes me to the train station which can get me anywhere major in the UK within a few hours and to Paris quicker than if I flew.

Now York is a mediaeval city, in that it didn't see major redevelopment during the industrial revolution, so it is predisposed to being a pedestrian city but that doesn't mean other mediaeval cities are not currently trying to be car focused. The historical layout in no way made our excellent rail links inevitable and wider roads just leave more scope for pedestrian boulevards and great for bus provision (I don't envy our bus drivers having to take bendy buses through narrow streets). Our provision for cyclists is honestly a bit poo poo though.

Would York's lessons be applicable outside non-dense urban areas? No, of course not but it does apply in those areas, which includes small dense areas and that is a start. Britain's rail system is inferior to the continents by a wide margin but still does a decent job, major rail expansion in the US with use of the most modern trains asks infrastructure could be amazing.

enbot
Jun 7, 2013


mugrim posted:

I would disagree on the point that it's currently being disincentivized. Oil in America is actually pretty cheap. It's currently over 10 bucks a gallon in London and more elsewhere in the world. The only places that really get it cheaper are those that have nationalized their reserves and those with strong ties to nearby countries that have gone that path.


Yep, even at 3-4 a gallon it's cheap as poo poo- I priced it out and it was much cheaper to drive 250 miles each way for break than to take the bus or train. And the bus is a fairly major route on a major highway that's hardly in the middle of nowhere.

Something like 100 bucks train roundtrip, 70 for the bus, and 40 to drive. And of course driving is faster, hell even the bus was faster than the train that's how terrible this country is with rail.

That combined with

enraged_camel posted:

If you're going to take away my car, there better be a bus stop within a few blocks from my house that has buses come every 5-10 minutes (24/7) that can take me where I want to go in the same amount of time that my car can.

is really why you won't see anything changing anytime soon. Is it really a mystery why people drive when public transportation multiplies your travel time many times over and is more expensive outside of some edge cases in a couple major cities.

Ardennes
May 12, 2002

It is always about people.


ReV VAdAUL posted:

Given how corrupt the whole system is these days I can't help but worry that if we get petrol/diesel autonomous vehicles the network operator and fuel companies will collude to lower efficiency for mutual profit.

Regardless though good public transport and walking infrastructure can really pay off. I live in York in the UK which is a small city that is held up as an example of how to reduce car use in cities. Most of the centre bans everything but delivery vehicles and public transport during the day. There is decent public transport late into the night (though sadly not for exurbs) and there's an hourly bus to my suburb that takes me directly to the centre and a 20 minute walk to a more regular bus. Either bus takes me to the train station which can get me anywhere major in the UK within a few hours and to Paris quicker than if I flew.

Now York is a mediaeval city, in that it didn't see major redevelopment during the industrial revolution, so it is predisposed to being a pedestrian city but that doesn't mean other mediaeval cities are not currently trying to be car focused. The historical layout in no way made our excellent rail links inevitable and wider roads just leave more scope for pedestrian boulevards and great for bus provision (I don't envy our bus drivers having to take bendy buses through narrow streets). Our provision for cyclists is honestly a bit poo poo though.

Would York's lessons be applicable outside non-dense urban areas? No, of course not but it does apply in those areas, which includes small dense areas and that is a start. Britain's rail system is inferior to the continents by a wide margin but still does a decent job, major rail expansion in the US with use of the most modern trains asks infrastructure could be amazing.

There are relatively modern cities in the US (like Portland) they also have very walk-able neighborhoods, but could do so much better if there was funding available. Like most things in the US it boils down to politics and money, and while there are plans on the books and a even a desire to get them done...it can't happen or happens very slowly as state/local governments beg the government for cash.

Also, if you think public transportation is more expensive than driving...you need to do some budgeting. Parking, insurance, gas, the car itself (and its loans), maintenance all add up.

Ardennes fucked around with this message at Dec 16, 2013 around 12:54

LogisticEarth
Mar 28, 2004

Yeah pal? Well, you don't have a tongue but that don't stop me having to SHUT YOU UP!

enbot posted:

Yep, even at 3-4 a gallon it's cheap as poo poo- I priced it out and it was much cheaper to drive 250 miles each way for break than to take the bus or train. And the bus is a fairly major route on a major highway that's hardly in the middle of nowhere.

Something like 100 bucks train roundtrip, 70 for the bus, and 40 to drive. And of course driving is faster, hell even the bus was faster than the train that's how terrible this country is with rail.

Are you factoring in the full cost if the car here? That is, the initial price, plus maintenance and insurance? Because then it gets pricier. The problem with those factors though is that they are a sunk cost, so if you need a car for some aspect of your life, they don't go away. I wish my wife and I could keep it to one car, but both her and I need to be semi mobile for work. Public transit is great if you go to the same place everyday, but the options of where to go in a reasonable time are very limited.

Banning cars, or specifically trying to make cars more expensive us just a regressive idea that ignores why we are where we are in the US. We have a transportation system heavily dependent on cars because the government actively promoted such an infrastructure with road design, block zoning, and subsidies for highway construction. If we want to return to a more "natural" mix of transportation methods, then we need to attack it from that angle. People use cars because in so many situations there is no other choice.

Liquid Communism
Mar 9, 2004

Congratulations on not getting fit in 2011!

I enjoy how one of your points boils down to 'how dare people live in the 2/3 of the country that isn't urbanized'.

Wee Tinkle Wand
Sep 28, 2004

I'M GETTING FUCKED UP THE ASS OVER HERE


enraged_camel posted:

If you're going to take away my car, there better be a bus stop within a few blocks from my house that has buses come every 5-10 minutes (24/7) that can take me where I want to go in the same amount of time that my car can.

At one point in time this did exist in the US. There were trolleys, buses and cheap taxis which would get you wherever you needed to go. They were not just a big city thing either and were slowly spreading out to small cities and large towns. Every city with more than 10,000 people had a streetcar system serving all the major areas of the city with private bus systems that would drop you off on streetcar lines from anywhere else within city limits for a low cost.

General Motors and some other car companies did a lot of underhanded poo poo to try to put an end to the mass adoption of public transportation and spent 40 years running smear campaigns, buying up then dismantling trolley lines and whatever else they could think of to make using public transportation less appealing than owning a car.

We could probably go back to how it used to be if someone would shoulder the responsibility for rebuilding all the infrastructure which was dismantled during those years.

Powercrazy
Feb 15, 2004

*~I'm Back Boyz~*

If you can read this your style sheet is a PoS.


I live in NYC, so since I don't need a guncar no one does. Basically I think everyone should be exactly like me.

Also I'm glad you are finally admitting that "X control" actually just means you want a full-on ban, but you don't want to admit it.

Powercrazy fucked around with this message at Dec 16, 2013 around 14:22

LogisticEarth
Mar 28, 2004

Yeah pal? Well, you don't have a tongue but that don't stop me having to SHUT YOU UP!

It wasn't just the big auto interests going against trollies and whatnot. The Modernist trend with design during the majority of the 20th century was pushing for suburbanization, car transport, and big "tower-in-the-park" style workplaces. It had a lot of appeal to people living in smoggy cities, and the democratic ideal of free, individualistic (i.e. cars) transportation.

enbot
Jun 7, 2013


LogisticEarth posted:

Are you factoring in the full cost if the car here? That is, the initial price, plus maintenance and insurance? Because then it gets pricier. The problem with those factors though is that they are a sunk cost, so if you need a car for some aspect of your life, they don't go away. I wish my wife and I could keep it to one car, but both her and I need to be semi mobile for work. Public transit is great if you go to the same place everyday, but the options of where to go in a reasonable time are very limited.

Banning cars, or specifically trying to make cars more expensive us just a regressive idea that ignores why we are where we are in the US. We have a transportation system heavily dependent on cars because the government actively promoted such an infrastructure with road design, block zoning, and subsidies for highway construction. If we want to return to a more "natural" mix of transportation methods, then we need to attack it from that angle. People use cars because in so many situations there is no other choice.

I got a deal on renting, so yes, the full cost of renting a car and buying gas was less than the bus. Errr, I think it was pretty much equal, to be honest- less than 5 dollars either way, anyway. Cheaper than the train for sure though, america's rail is just abysmal for long distance travel outside the northeast.

enbot fucked around with this message at Dec 16, 2013 around 14:31

LogisticEarth
Mar 28, 2004

Yeah pal? Well, you don't have a tongue but that don't stop me having to SHUT YOU UP!

enbot posted:

I got a deal on renting, so yes, the full cost of renting a car and buying gas was less than the bus.

Wait, you drove 500 miles and it only cost you $40? If you got 40 miles to the gallon at $3.10 a gallon (giving you the benefit of the doubt, maybe you pre-paid for gas or something) that come out to $38.75 just for gas. There is no way it only cost you $40 to drive unless you got a free rental or something. I don't see how that's a particularly useful anecdote if you just got free stuff.

Edit: yeah, $5 each way isn't normal cost. Rentals on the absolute cheap end run like $25/day. Typically more like $40/day or $300-400/week.

LogisticEarth fucked around with this message at Dec 16, 2013 around 14:36

Ardennes
May 12, 2002

It is always about people.


enbot posted:

I got a deal on renting, so yes, the full cost of renting a car and buying gas was less than the bus.

Eh so someone gave you a free car basically and took care of all the maintenance, insurance and registration fees? Because otherwise renting a car is ridiculously expensive.

Yeah, just penciling the costs out doesn't work, especially since you can get bus passes in most places for under 100 bucks. In DC (an expensive urban area), it is $64 bucks. In DC, that would buy you around 18 gallons of gas even if you got the car for free (and a magic benefactor), never paid for parking or even got a ticket.

Ardennes fucked around with this message at Dec 16, 2013 around 14:39

HighClassSwankyTime
Jan 16, 2004


ReV VAdAUL posted:

Now York is a mediaeval city, in that it didn't see major redevelopment during the industrial revolution, so it is predisposed to being a pedestrian city but that doesn't mean other mediaeval cities are not currently trying to be car focused. The historical layout in no way made our excellent rail links inevitable and wider roads just leave more scope for pedestrian boulevards and great for bus provision (I don't envy our bus drivers having to take bendy buses through narrow streets). Our provision for cyclists is honestly a bit poo poo though.

You've never been to Europe, have you? Lemme tell you, NYC is not a "medieval" city. Also, the 19th century isn't quite medieval, you're off by about four centuries.

awesome-express
Dec 30, 2008


A car provides an incredibly comfortable environment that mass transit simply can't create. I'm all for improving transportation, but public transport is never going to be as comfortable as a car.

LogisticEarth
Mar 28, 2004

Yeah pal? Well, you don't have a tongue but that don't stop me having to SHUT YOU UP!

HighClassSwankyTime posted:

You've never been to Europe, have you? Lemme tell you, NYC is not a "medieval" city. Also, the 19th century isn't quite medieval, you're off by about four centuries.

Haha might want to read his post again you Amero-centric scum.

Edit: vvv Nobody is complaining about the deal you got, just that it is way outside of normal events and is totally useless as an anecdote for the topic at hand. "Free rentals from Hertz" is not a feasible transportation policy.

LogisticEarth fucked around with this message at Dec 16, 2013 around 14:48

enbot
Jun 7, 2013


I'm sorry I got a good deal? Blame hertz, it's a silly thing to go on about though- point is it shouldn't even be in the same ballpark because the car was massively more convenient. And if I took the bus I'd have to take a train once I got to the city.

LogisticEarth posted:

Haha might want to read his post again you Amero-centric scum.

Edit: vvv Nobody is complaining about the deal you got, just that it is way outside of normal events and is totally useless as an anecdote for the topic at hand.

Hardly, since most people's car is a fixed cost we are really just talking about the gas for most people- and the cost of gas comes out ahead of public transportation in most areas. I'm not sure what is anecdotal about that.

enbot fucked around with this message at Dec 16, 2013 around 14:50

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McDowell
Aug 1, 2008

Surely, Caligula was my greatest role

Making car ownership a burden is a bad idea and politically unfeasible. The better solution is to slowly phase in public fleets of autonomous vehicles.

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