Published: Wednesday, Nov. 7 2012 12:00 a.m. MST
I love being able to park my Prius free on Salt Lake City streets.
Discriminatory? Perhaps. But that's just one example among many of
government policy being used to promote a public good. How about tax credits
for installing solar panels or attic insulation? I suppose the author is
against those too.
But stop to think -- those drivers will not be in as good physical shape as you
will be after you get some exercise walking a few feet further.
This is just like my wife's Kindergarten class. "He butted me."
"All Utahns should enjoy equal access to the structures our taxes helped to
build."There goes the governor's parking spot.
what about the high occupance lanes? They were meant to encourage carpooling.
Now the wealthy can drive in them by paying a fee. Unless the wealthy want to
buy the land; and pay to build their own car lanes; this should not be allowed
Robert: "Sale of hybrid cars peaked in 2008." Here is a great example
of a half truth. The statement is true as stated (I am willing to accept that
you told the truth), but the problem comes with your conclusion. You seem to say
that the decline in sales is due to the public wising up and therefore proving
that we don't need parking spots for hybrid/natural gas cars. Isn't it just as likely that 2008 was famous for more than the end of the
hybrid boom...like the melt down of the world as we know it? Isn't that
just as likely or more likely to have caused the drop in sales. Hybrids are more
expensive and household budgets have tightened since then. Yes?
Can you say Social Engineering?
@Wally West"Can you say Social Engineering?"And
that's a problem because . . . ??Social engineering happens all
the time, and often for much more nefarious things than encouraging/rewarding
"green" automobile choices.
@ SG in SLCDo I really need to point out why its a problem? Do their
need to be Sheep as well as a Beehive on Utah's state flag!?
Oh my gosh. Really? You're worried about walking a few more feet?
re: SG in SLCDo I really need to spell out Why? REALLY!?
Government can promote (via the bully pulpit) preferable behaviors without
engaging in blatant discrimination. Such discrimination breeds contempt for
government.As far as environmental impacts go, how you drive is more
important than what you drive. Do you restrict your driving to necessities
(buying food, commuting to work), or do you waste energy and generate pollution
driving your Prius hundreds of miles to go skiing or mountain biking? Do you
drive your Prius 25 miles on a single purpose errand to the newsstand just to
buy the latest issue of the Sierra Club magazine? Do you chain trips, using your
Humvee's large cargo capacity to carry a week's worth of laundry to
the laundromat, purchase a week's worth of groceries, and a do-it-yourself
solar panel installation kit, all in one trip? You'd need multiple daily
trips to do that with an eco-car.
Parking Lot too big? Keep taking all the shortcuts you can get and soon
you'll be able to get one of those handicap spots.
Yes, Wally, you really DO need to point out why it is a problem; but first, let
me point some things out:I really was serious when I said that
social engineering happens all the time -- we just call it different things,
such as marketing, incentivizing, "sweetening the deal", etc. When it
comes right down to it, though, it's simply pavlovian operant conditioning.
We are really "homo sapiens economicus" (economic man), and we are all
about maximizing real or perceived utility and value received. Businesses and
governments know this, and consequently use incentives and disincentives to
great effect.I was also serious about social engineering being used
for a wide array of things, from the benign (e.g., tax code incentives for home
ownership and charitable giving), to the insidious (e.g., desensitizing the
public to escalating gratuitous sex and violence in the media, stigmatizing the
connotations of words to further covert social agendas).So, I stand
by my statement that rewarding the use of hybrid vehicles is really pretty
benign; of course, if you have an ax to grind against conservationism or
activist government, you are going to see this differently . . .
Wally west, do you need to spell it out? Yes. Really. Corn dog,
Prius v Hummer for economy and enviromental impact, your argument is about the
silliest thing I have ever heard. I would imagine that large cargo area in the
back of your HumVee is empty except for that one theoretical day when you pick
up groceries and do laundry and pick up solar panels. Other then that I bet you
most of the time there is no load and only one person in that vehicle getting -
what - 8 mpg. Versus 50 mpg for that Prius. That's a lotta trips. Oh, and
there is plenty of room for groceries, and laundry, in that hatchback. And before you cite that CNW Marketing Reserch study, don't - it has
been thoroughly discredited.
@Corn DogClearly, the Prius is not the only hybrid option available.
A GMC Yukon Hybrid could easily be substituted for your hypothetical Hummvee at
about twice the fuel efficiency and about 2/3 the cost.Your point
about optimizing the logistics of how we drive is well taken, though.
Generally speaking, most of us need to do a better job of that.
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