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Free Minds & Free Markets

Mass Transit Use Is Declining As Millennials Buy More Cars

Turns out young people actually like driving.

More than a quarter of U.S. government spending on surface transportation goes to mass transit, and yet mass transit accounts for less than 2 percent of total trips taken nationwide. The Competitive Enterprise Institute's Marc Scribner attributes this eye-popping mismatch to a persistent "falsehood peddled by the transit lobby": If you build it, they will come.

A stunning chart put together by the University of South Florida's Steve Polzin illustrates how transit supply has failed to create its own demand.

The blue line represents transit ridership; the red line shows the expansion of the country's mass transit infrastructure going back to 1970. Their divergence is a "report card on productivity that mom and dad would hardly be proud of," Polzin writes. It's also a statistical representation of a sad yet all-too-famiTransit Ridership vs. Vehicle Miles ||| Steven PolzinSteven Polzinliar scene in American cities: empty light rail trains chugging along main streets in deserted downtowns.

As Polzin notes, data from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics and the National Transit Data Program show that transit ridership in the U.S. has been declining recently. Yet advocates hold out hope that millennials will deliver on the mass transit renaissance they've been claiming is right around the corner since the 1970s.

It's not going to happen. As Reason Foundation Director of Transportation Policy Bob Poole noted recently, J.D. Power's and Bankrate.com report that car buying is surging among millennials. This data contradict a 2014 paper from the Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) claiming young people were no longer attracted to automobiles and therefore the U.S. should divert even more money to transit.

For more on the failure of mass transit, click below to watch a video story I put together on Washington D.C.'s disastrous new streetcar line:

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  • Aloysious||

    Nice. Informative. Liked it so much better than Ed's Beyonce/jay-z article.

  • DenverJ||

    Can we please stay on topic, people?

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Who wants to go halfises with me on Kia Soul?

  • thrakkorzog||

    There was a beer thread earlier, so I'm a bit tipsy. How's about we experiment with a Miata?

  • Playa Manhattan.||

    The experimenting isn't with the Miata, it's inside the Miata. With Crusty.

  • thrakkorzog||

    So does Crusty steal the sheets? Because that's a dealbreaker.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    For numerous reasons I insist sleeping upon rubber sheets, which is usually a dealbreaker.

  • thrakkorzog||

    So do you just piss your pants a lot a lot? Or is this an S&M thing?

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    It's a "dripping and oozing" thing.

  • Butts Wagner||

    I assume Crusty is a ripping and the tearing kind of guy. But that doesn't explain the rubber sheets.

  • Playa Manhattan.||

    The rubber sheets are for the tearing. Blood stains are the worst.

  • AlmightyJB||

    He likes to save the fluids for later

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

  • Rhywun||

    What... the...?

  • Crusty Juggler||

    This is the worst chat room ever.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

  • Rhywun||

    Um... wow. It's not getting any less WTF.

  • Pompey||

    Excellent, you've removed the awful grave accent and now your handle makes sense again. Welcome back.

  • Playa Manhattan.||

    I'm afraid you've been sorely misinformed. No player here.

  • Rhywun||

    What's up with the trailing period, though?

    *hmmm*

  • Pompey||

    Hmmmmmmm.......

  • Playa Manhattan.||

    I stole it from Paul before he transitioned.

    I'm not just a name, I'm an entire sentence.

  • PapayaSF||

    It's a trap!

  • Pompey||

    Silly me, all.this time I thought the beach didn't use an awful inappropriate grave accent.

  • Zeb||

    And you were right. The other problem was that both "player" (with a silent r) and "playa" have the accent on the first syllable.

  • Pompey||

    Yeah, I was aware, at least as far as Spanish pronunciation and spelling is concerned. Never thought about the "player" stuff and the indication of [grave] stress before though. If anyone confuses the Spanish spelling with player speak, that's their problem.

  • Playa Manhattan.||

    Yes, but it becomes my problem.

    Half of the people here thought I was some playboy type living in NYC.

    I'm not Gilmore.

  • Chipper Morning Wood||

    What"s a halfis?

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Splitsville?

  • Ted S.||

  • Ken Shultz||

    "More than a quarter of U.S. government spending on surface transportation goes to mass transit, and yet mass transit accounts for less than 2 percent of total trips taken nationwide."

    If we spent more on mass transit, more people would use it. I know because Barack Obama said so, and in addition to that, I heard it on NPR. And if you hear it on NPR, then the only people who don't believe it are the homophobes.

  • Chipper Morning Wood||

    [harrows gays]

  • Charles Easterly||

  • DenverJ||

    "[harrows gays]"

    Perfect

  • Pompey||

    NPR: if it doesn't kill you, it makes you stronger. Just like slugging yourself in the genitals. Right? Right???

  • James Anderson Merritt||

    I think that transit can work, but to do so, it must offer service and convenience that inspire people to choose it over the personal automobile often enough to be financially self-sustaining. Transit must take people where they want to go, when(ever) they want to go, quickly, in comfort and safety, with little or no hassle, for an attractive price. Cajoling, shaming, and browbeating people into taking transit they don't like will never work work. If transit is to succeed, it must entice riders away from other options, including the personal car. In some situations, conventional transit approaches work, and -- surprise! -- people use transit because it suits their needs better than alternatives. But most of the time, the car is preferred, and why shouldn't it be? Transit supporters will have cause to complain when someone finally provides something better than cars and it fails. Until then, they need to get behind finding and building that something. I suggest Personal Rapid Transit (PRT), which is now delighting passengers in several parts of the world. If there were a PRT system in my town, I would probably use it often, instead of my car. But I probably wouldn't use light rail or buses. We don't have light rail (yet!), but I've tried our local buses on numerous occasions and always prefer to use the car instead.

  • rudehost||

    I doubt choo choo's will ever work on any meaningful scale because it is generally impossible for them to offer an attractive combination of price and convenience.

    As a side note I figure eventually car ownership will be uncommon. Why do you need a car when you can press a button on your phone and within 2 minutes a self driving car will be in your driveway to take you anywhere you want to go? That is certainly going to be the future especially as people do more of their shopping on amazon and their working at home. Timing is not clear but I think that is the direction.

  • ||

    "I doubt choo choo's will ever work on any meaningful scale because it is generally impossible for them to offer an attractive combination of price and convenience."

    That's because they have no incentive to do so. I keep hearing that up here to plus needing to *improve* health services. Few people have come to the realization that sort of stuff only comes by way of the private sector because it's the profit motive that fills needs, wants and demand better.

    Until then, expect them to promise this and that and offer little in return.

  • rudehost||

    I don't think it works in most cases even with incentives. Incentives can't overcome impossible problems. Public transit is just very very expensive relative to it's value. No amount of incentives in 1973 were going to make solar competitive. The same applies here.

    It can work in highly dense environments where private transportation is a nightmare and a hassle (think NYC). Almost anywhere else it simply can't make economic sense regardless of the incentives.

  • ||

    I agree.

    The ole 'but how do you get electricity to the one guy out in rural country'?

    Private companies wouldn't do it if wasn't cost effective; public utilities do.

  • Rhywun||

    Yep - I see that fee on my electric bill every month.

  • rudehost||

    Maybe that one guy would consider his living choices more carefully if he had to bare the full cost of those choices. I don't see why I should subsidize your choice to live in the middle of nowhere by paying for your electricity anymore than I should subsidize your beach house with government bailouts after a hurricane.

  • dchang0||

    I absolutely agree, especially about the beach houses being subsidized. Also, about the one guy out in the boonies, there are options for him to generate electricity on his own without needing to mooch off of others. He could buy his own solar panels. He could build an energy-neutral house that doesn't require any electricity to run. He could buy gas generators and truck in his own gas. He could erect a windmill, and so on.

  • ||

    Roads as we currently do them are massively subsidized.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Gas tax more than pays for the roads.

  • AlexInCT||

    Not in my state, "The People's Republic of Connecticut", where it gets put in the general fund, and then used to buy vote by the one party that has run this state into the ground....

    They now are talking about bringing tolls back to pay for roadz. The same tolls they got rid off close to 2 decades ago when they instituted a temporary state income tax...

    That's because even though we have the nation's second highest gas tax, as I already pointed out, it is not being spent on what it was supposed to be spent on..

  • HeteroPatriarch||

    Revenue from gas tax is still greater than spending on roads.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    Quit taking 20% of federal gas tax collections and setting them aside for mass transit projects and get rid of the Davis-Bacon Act that forces gas tax paying drivers (and all other federal taxpayers) to subsidize unions via overpriced union labor rates on construction projects and then we'll talk about who is subsidizing who.

  • Jickerson||

    And privacy will yet another hit in our surveillance society. Convenience trumps privacy for so many people.

  • ||

    My Jeep goes where I want it to go when I want it to go there. It leaves that place and goes back to my house the same way.

  • Zeb||

    Why do you need a car when you can press a button on your phone and within 2 minutes a self driving car will be in your driveway to take you anywhere you want to go?

    Maybe if you live in a city/suburb. In more rural areas, that will never work for the same reasons trains don't work in most of the US. Customers aren't dense enough to make it efficient enough.

  • rudehost||

    Agree. But as a practical matter that covers 80% of the population. It wouldn't be true for everyone but it would be true for most people. I'm also not completely convinced it couldn't work in small towns. Walmart made a company serving small towns that couldn't be served. Is it really a stretch to think a a fleet of cars with routing algorithms couldn't be as efficient as a town with 2000 cars sitting idle in driveways 95% of the time?

    This is all my speculation but I think this is where we are going. I also think once cars are truly self driving and don't need human babysitting the inside of a vehicle is going to start looking more like a living room likely with a TV etc.

  • invisible finger||

    In more rural areas, that will never work

    Of course it will. It already does. Maybe not as quickly as two minutes, and maybe not as cheaply, but my mom uses taxis in the rural area she lives in. She usually has to call an hour or 90 minutes ahead, but it's not like doctor's appointments are made on a whim.

    Then again, there isn't a government-controlled taxi cartel where she lives. Uber et al, along with self-driving cars are solutions to the problems of socialistic governments that won't let go. THAT problem is a lot less of an issue in rural areas.

  • Sevo||

    In SF, there are luxury transit services; small buses, coffee, wi-fi, you call and request a pickup and list a destination. Leap is one, Chariot is another.
    The Board of Supes is trying their best to put them out of business; it's 'stratifying' mass transit, only rich people can afford it!

    "Leap trial runs drew criticism, and it was often called elitist: It stopped at public bus stops but cost more than Muni.
    Supervisor John Avalos, who represents the southern part of San Francisco around Crocker Amazon, called that service “a crock” at the time.
    “You’re trying to make money, and you’re creating a two-tiered transportation system in San Francisco,” Avalos said."
    http://www.sfgate.com/business.....140274.php

  • Rhywun||

    That's a brilliant idea. Transit would bounce back overnight if it wasn't treated (and priced) as a poor-people thing.

  • PapayaSF||

    It's treated as a union-employment thing in San Francisco.

  • grrizzly||

    What rich people are you talking about? I've checked the Leap website and apparently a single ride costs only $2. A bus ride in Boston costs $1.60 (I had to check I never take buses) or $2.10 if you didn't figure out how to get a CharlieCard. The cheapest subway ride is $2.10. How can you call a $2 bus ride expensive?

  • ||

    I think he means progs shout bull shit like that.

  • Rhywun||

    Interesting. It does say "for a limited time". I don't see how they could possibly operate this for less than the current Muni fare which is $2.25.

    Here in Brooklyn there are express buses to Manhattan that are certainly nicer and faster than the subway I normally take every day. The fare is more than double the subway fare. The only problem is they are often too full to get a seat.

  • Slocum||

    I suspect they're not for rich people because they're expensive -- but because they offer routes that are useful primarily to rich people. And because they don't have to hire unionized municipal bus drivers, they don't even have to be expensive. Obviously, this cannot be allowed.

  • ||

    Leap, Chariot Uber, Lyft - they all threaten entrenched interests. Interests that do little to actually fill changing consumer tastes. So they're left crying and shouting 'no fair' because they don't want to or can't compete with ideas and innovation. Better to be a monopoly.

  • CZmacure||

    I like that no one ever points out that the public transit agencies of the world have access to :

    - subsidized debt
    - subsidized land ownership (they don't pay land-use tax to the city)
    - subsidized funding (via the power of taxation)
    - goodwill of the public

    And despite all of these remarkable advantages, *still* can't perform. I guess a social justice "access" mandate costs more than that nasty old capitalist "profit motive" ... in which companies without the above advantages both provide services AND turn a profit while doing so?

  • Zeb||

    it's 'stratifying' mass transit, only rich people can afford it!

    They never had Town Cars or limos before?

  • Ken Shultz||

    Eventually, I suspect most of the benefits of mass transit are likely to come by way of self-driving, electric cars.

    If we're going to spend taxpayer money over my objections, I think there are some things you can spend it on that are better than others. If instead of spending $700 billion in stimulus, for instance, we had run natural gas lines along the interstates to facilitate natural gas distribution to filling stations nationwide, I suspect that would have done more for the economy, national defense, and the environment than squandering that money on stimulus the way they did.

    Likewise, if we're going to spend money on mass transit over my objections, and self-driving, electric cars are likely to deliver most of the benefits of mass transit anyway, then I'd rather the government spent that money on the infrastructure necessary to make self-driving, electric cars happen sooner rather than later. Rumble strips, standardization of striping, installing the infrastructure for charging in garages, etc., etc., all that stuff is gonna be expensive--but not as expensive as doing it anyway--and building a bunch of mass transit infrastructure that may soon be obsolete anyway.

    I'd rather they didn't spend our money on any of this stuff, but if they're going to do it anyway, why spend it on last century's solutions?

  • Rhywun||

    self-driving, electric cars are likely to deliver most of the benefits of mass transit anyway

    Except in large cities where "mass transit" means moving lots of people. Good luck with the politics of taking that money away from high-density cities and giving it to low-density areas.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Well, if we're talking about moving all the people that drive around by way of electricity at high speed without traffic jams because all their cars are moving in unison and avoiding each other . . ?

    Then we're talking about moving a lot of people, alleviating the effects of traffic congestion, saving energy, and doing it in a way that individuals can effectively get into mass transit from the comfort of their homes.

    That's the future. We'll probably see it in our lifetimes with or without government assistance. And when we get there, mass transit as we think of it now will be like the horse and buggy. Money invested in mass transit is money invested in the horse and buggy.

  • Rhywun||

    We'll probably see it in our lifetimes

    I'm pushing 50. Not in my lifetime :)

  • Ken Shultz||

    I think the difficult part was the technical viability, and that hurdle is behind us.

  • Raven Nation||

    Where are the slidewalks?

  • Ken Shultz||

    What do you mean?

  • Dangerous Buffoon||

    "Where are the slidewalks?"

    Same place as the atomic cars.

  • ||

    You do realize that the way we currently do roads is massively subsidized with taxpayer money, right? Most toll operations for example are moneysinks--they cost more money to run than they bring in in toll revenue.

  • BigT||

    Subsidized with gasoline taxes, so the users are paying for what they use.

  • DJF||

    Plus roads are needed for more then moving people, you need roads to deliver material to and from homes and business.

    So a system of fuel taxes on cars and trucks and a general property or other tax seem appropiate for road maintenance

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    property tax is the devil. It's worse than income tax, IMO.

  • kbolino||

    Most toll operations for example are moneysinks--they cost more money to run than they bring in in toll revenue.

    This is a dubious claim.

    First of all, it's misleading. Non-toll roads bring in no money so are even worse money sinks.

    Second, a lot of newer toll roads have been built "in advance" of demand, which is to say based upon wildly optimistic predictions that haven't come true. Older toll roads were built in response to demand, which means that they are much more profitable. The planners are at fault, not the roads themselves.

    Third, with certain exceptions like NYC, the tax base that is "subsidizing" the roads is the very same that benefits from them. Even NYC is arguable, since many of the workers and goods that the city depends on come from outside the city.

    The solution is to privatize the roads.

  • invisible finger||

    Also, the users of toll roads are still paying gasoline taxes which do not go to the maintenance of the toll roads.

  • ||

    This is what I wanted to say. Mass transit won't be adopted unless it makes more sense to people than driving their own car. For example, I did a gig downtown Mpls and it was way easier to ride the bus than it was to drive/park. Of course, if my schedule had been more chaotic, it wouldn't have worked.

    The problem with govt mass transit is that instead of trying to compete, they decide to punish their competitors instead. They add taxes to parking lots, etc. If mass transit was private, they'd figure out ways to compete.

    My ideal would be for govt to get out of mass transit entirely. Instead they should determine what it saves them in road building/repair and offer bonuses to any private person who adds people to their car/van/bus/train.

  • Rhywun||

    The two biggest problems with transit are the lowest-common-denominator fares and the transit unions. So yes, privatization would help - if they could set realistic fares and somehow disentangle themselves from the pubsec unions.

  • ||

    Government is currently heavily subsidizing driving. Mass transit looks bad largely because way more money is spent subsidizing driving than is spent on mass transit.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    Mass transit looks bad largely because way more money is spent subsidizing driving than is spent on mass transit.

    Yeah, I'm gonna call bullshit on that. Especially since the article says this:

    More than a quarter of U.S. government spending on surface transportation goes to mass transit, and yet mass transit accounts for less than 2 percent of total trips taken nationwide.
  • Mickey Rat||

    That means more total dollars are spent on cars than mass transit but more dollars are spent on mass transit per usage than cars.

  • Zeb||

    It also only refers to federal money, I think.

  • Suell||

    Bullshit.

  • ||

    Bull. What you are calling a subsidy is simply the govt spending the gas tax money it has collected. Since car users pay almost all the gas taxes, it makes sense that most of the money goes back to them.

    The silly part of the gas tax is when the govt spends gobs of it on stuff like bike trails or things like that.

  • invisible finger||

    My ideal would be for govt to get out of mass transit entirely.

    Note that in most northern cities, mass transit was originally completely private. One could even argue that in the private-only days there were more train lines built than necessary so some went bankrupt. When a few poor saps had to find another way to travel when the train line they hitched their lifestyle to went bankrupt, municipal governments mandated service levels and prices - which caused ALL the private operators to go bankrupt.

  • Playa Manhattan.||

    Inspire? Yeah, it's really easy to inspire at gunpoint.

  • Deep Lurker||

    Mass transit is inherently inferior, all things being equal. It can only succeed where it has some special, extraordinary advantage over private transport.

    The one form of mass transit that is successful (or was successful, until the government ghouls got their "Ve must have CONTROL!" claws into it via the TSA) is air travel. It's success came because it had one or two huge advantages (speed, cross-country and cross-ocean range) over private transport that made up for the inherent disadvantages of the mass-transit form.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    It can only succeed where it has some special, extraordinary advantage over private transport.
    The one form of mass transit that is successful is air travel.

    These are related. Because of regulatory burden (among other things), private individual air travel is unattainable by the average person.

  • Rhywun||

    In the US, where there is effectively unlimited space, you have a point. That won't always be true here and certainly isn't true everywhere now.

  • kbolino||

    Of course, mass transit and private transit are not mutually exclusive. There is no reason the bus lines, train lines, and whatever other forms of mass transit may be prudent, have to be owned and operated by the government.

  • invisible finger||

    There is no reason the bus lines, train lines, and whatever other forms of mass transit may be prudent, have to be owned and operated by the government.

    Again, almost all of them WERE private until government started fixing prices.

    When a driver of a Chinese bus line has an accident, government tells you it's because there are no government regulations. When a government train operator falls asleep at the controls and kills 10 people and caused 100 million in property damage, government tells you they need more money from people who don't use the product.

  • Ron||

    The mass transit method you are describing is called a car its been transporting masses of people for over a hundred years now. Cars are not some evil item that the left wants to portray them as.

  • SIV||

    So all those news stories that the few millennials who could actually afford cars spent all their money on bicycles instead because they didn't want to learn how to drive were a load of crap?

  • SIV||

    Here's one: settled science.

    Added bonus: Generations are now only 12 or 13 years long. Unlike the 22 years of Boomers

    Millennials (born between 1979 and 1990, by her definition) with those of Generation X (born 1967-1978)

    My favorite though is still the list of "Generation X filmmakers" of which only one was younger than me.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    Added bonus: Generations are now only 12 or 13 years long. Unlike the 22 years of Boomers

    The generations keep shifting earlier and earlier to mean writers' biases.

    The only paradigm that makes sense to me is this:

    Boomers: 1945-1963
    Gen X: 1964-1982
    Millennials: 1983-2001
    Post 9/11 generation: 2002-2020

    Anything more than 18 years means that a non-trivial portion of your generation is begetting another non-trivial portion of your generation (which stretches the meaning of generation). Anything shorter than ~15 years means that there are 6+ generations alive at any given time, which also stretches the meaning of generation.

    /mild OCD mixed with pedantry

  • AdamJ||

    Agreed. I'm 1980 and am not a fucking millennial. Millennials did not make mix tapes on cassette. The Internet was always ubiquitous for a millennial; not so for anyone who was born before 1985.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    Millennials did not make mix tapes on cassette.

    I did that in 1995 as a 7 year old. Granted, I was poor and couldn't afford a CD. My dad still has the dual cassette player/recorder sitting in his bedroom.

  • DOOMco||

    Same. 1991. I made lots of tapes. Even found one a few months ago. Lots of weird al.

  • Granny Weatherwax||

    This is a pretty good breakdown, better than many where half my kids were Gen-X and the other half are Millennials along with my grand kids ,which is goofy since they also put me as a Gen-X but my parents are Greatest. I'd much rather be an old Gen-X than a young Boomer.

  • Ron||

    the millennials are finally having kids and realize brining a kid and groceries on a bus next to the starving hobo is no fun.

  • Hamster of Doom||

    This data contradict a 2014 paper from the Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) claiming young people were no longer attracted to automobiles and therefore the U.S. should divert even more money to transit.


    Perspective and incentives.

    Subprime auto loans have been surging for a couple of years now. Our economy, without a bubble? Perish the thought. If it makes the man-bun researchers happy, though, auto loans are showing signs of instability.

    Paywalled :( and not paywalled.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    I've got a 5 year loan on one car and a 6 year on the other. I did that because I knew that I will be able to pay them both off very quickly once I graduate, and I just prefer having low payments right now while our income is shaky.

    The fact that those were the defaults offered to me and other people like me is just plain disturbing. It becomes a recurring cycle for most people, because they trade in before 5 years is up. Instead of putting a dent in the new loan (or, you know, actually paying cash for cars), people (disproportionately young and poor) roll their balance into their new loan.

  • FreeToFear||

    I've owned 5 cars in my life and I'm looking at a 6th... (not counting my wife, who's had 2)... I think millenials with real jobs will quite happily buy cars

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    Everybody I know in my generation (millennials) either have a car or permanently "borrow" a parent's car. I don't know many urban people or hipsters, and I live in Dallas (not a walkable city), so my observations may not be representative, but most of the millennials I know have at least one car.

  • FreeToFear||

    Portland - and again, all the employed ones. Can't vouch for the downtown hipster underclass

  • Rhywun||

    We're busy spending the thousands of dollars we save on rent and lattes.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    One situation where people's cars have completely disappeared is in the designated driver role. Uber has absolutely killed the idea of the designated driver.

  • Rhywun||

    Heh, I've designated-driven back when I lived in a city that required a car. And without a license. Fun times.

  • Suell||

    I think one of the reasons why cities have been so hostile to Uber/Lyft is that they have dropped their DUI revenue considerably.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Data? Not saying it isn't true. Would just like to see it. I think disrupting their taxi cartel cash cow is a bigger deal.

  • Suell||

    It is just a hunch. I base it on the fact that it is now so unbelievably convenient to get a ride even at late hours that risking the DUI is not as worthwhile. I had a bunch of friends get DUIs back in the day because they wanted to get home and a cab was not going to happen. I think cities figure that out as well and miss the revenue.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

  • Suell||

    It is, per Bastiat, the unseen. The unseen in this case would be those people currently living or living free of debilitating injury because some drunk at 2 am decided to push a button on a phone and take a 10 buck Rideshare instead of hearing a busy signal for half and hour and saying "fuckit I will just drive home." Tough to find that number, but I would say it is not an insignificant number.

  • Rhywun||

    The remaining millenials who do prefer transit seem to be winding up in one of the handful of cities where they aren't treated like 2nd class citizens, if the record population figures of NYC and SF are any indication.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    I really hope this trend continues. I'd love to see the collapse of suburbia as people who, a couple generations ago, would have gone suburban move into more dense urban living.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Why?

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    I think that suburbia and the stereotypical suburban soccer moms and HOAs are extremely toxic to private property ownership.

    I'm a country boy at heart. I don't mind living in a neighborhood (I live in a neighborhood), but I do mind the bullshit "for teh pruhpurty vehlues" argument that is an everpresent retardation of progress whenever somebody tries to do anything on their own land.

  • invisible finger||

    What you're describing is urban politics. You'll have to explain how such politics would destroy suburbia yet not destroy their associated city. Unless the city was ALREADY destroyed and the city is simple rebuilding. But then that is just a typical 3-generation wave and has nothing to do with the relative densities of cities and suburbs.

  • kbolino||

    If you think you're not a second-class citizen in SF or NYC then you are blind to the actions of your city government and police. The difference between NYC and Detroit or Baltimore is that the former hasn't yet driven out its own tax base, while the latter two have.

    Maybe NYC is propping up the rest of the state as you not so subtly imply. For those of us living in other states, the claim that money flows from the cities outward is laughable, as is the implication that the biggest problem the cities face is coming from the people who aren't living there.

    The Maryland government is corrupt as fuck, but it can't hold a candle to the Baltimore city government.

  • Crusty Juggler||

  • AlmightyJB||

    That forehead. Christ.

  • Playa Manhattan.||

    Tulpa has really let herself go.

  • ||

    I never use public transit - by choice. I've might have used it maybe three times since I graduated university in the mid-90s. The city of Montreal keeps pumping transit but I don't feel like being crumpled in a hot bus or subway (metro) with little chance of getting a seat during busy periods. Who needs the hassle? Then there's the whole language problem with many in the STM being old style union nationalists who would rather tell you off for speaking English than doing their fucking jobs in a professional manner. In addition, the unhealthy, tight relationship between government and city officials with Bombardier who magically get all the contracts even when the city pretends there's an open bid. the funny part is Montreal has not and doesn't plan to improve and increase bus services on the West Island where all the 'maudits anglais' are nor has it talked about extending the subway there. It's outrageous as it is completely unfair and unacceptable to leave people on the WI in the lurch like that.

    But they have the balls to claim we should use it more and it's *world class*.

    In any event, people are rude and inconsiderate assholes. They can barely follow proper etiquette on bike paths for crying out loud.

    Give me my Sirius and my car and let me pollute the world in my own private luxury.

    /Fin rant.

  • Rhywun||

    I've never owned a car - by choice. I like walking to get almost all my daily needs, and spending less to commute than if I owned a car (which is artificially low because politics, but still lower even it was fairly priced).

    No language problems here :)

    /C'est la vie

  • ||

    NYC is awesome for walking for some reason.

    Montreal is different; not worse for it but it's different.

    For some of my friends, the train into work is/was necessary. All depends what one does and where they work. I did that it too for one year (I consider the train different from bus/subway) and it was practical; but still annoying. But I'm a misanthrope who doesn't like crowds.

    So don't use me as a barometer.

  • Rhywun||

    Oh, the NYC subway is no picnic. It *is* starved for funds, but not for the reasons they claim, of course.

  • ||

    Been on it. In the 80s and 90s (we took it into Trenton one year).

    Yeesh.

  • ||

    And what's up with the pay machines in Boston? A bit more complicated why don't you?

  • Rhywun||

    The subway doesn't go to Trenton. You might be thinking of NJ Transit?

    Anyway, things are *much* better since then. The 80s were basically the result of putting zero money into maintenance since the 50s.

  • ||

    I could have sworn we took it from NYC (where we were staying into NJ). It was really shabby. A guy we knew insisted we go see his cousin's pizza place. And it ended up being a sketchy ride for terrible pizza.

    It was around 1994-95 so my memory is foggy at best as to where we entered the subway and how it got us to Trenton. All I know is we sat behind the driver - a big black dude - and talked sports and joked around.

  • Rhywun||

    The subway only runs inside NYC. That was a commuter train.

  • ||

    Ah. It was outside. That's right!

  • Rhywun||

    Well, about 40% of the NYC Subway runs outdoors too but more importantly it does not cross city or state lines :)

  • ||

    I think it may have been even earlier than '94. Man, my memory is shot. Been so many times to NY.

    I just remember us having a great time.

  • invisible finger||

    Man, my memory is shot.

    Then it probably isn't the Boston fare machines that are the problem.

  • ||

    Yeah, we were on it in 2013. Much better.

  • ||

    And by the way, I wish I had a way to avoid buying a car. The expense of it is ludicrous when you think of it.

  • Sevo||

    "But they have the balls to claim we should use it more and it's *world class*."

    When you consider a good bit of 'the world' is still awaiting hot running water, and the French won't use it anyhow, it is "world-class".

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    The city of Montreal keeps pumping transit but I don't feel like being crumpled in a hot bus or subway (metro) with little chance of getting a seat during busy periods.

    Yep. For the last 2 years, I've had a 3-leg commute (home to work, work to school, school to home). I tried doing the public transit thing for a while, but it absolutely sucked.

    There were never any seats (and sometimes not even standing room) for my first two legs of the commute, getting to school from the train station (and back) was reliant on a shuttle bus that was less than punctual, I'd sometimes have to wait up to 30 minutes to catch a train back from school at 10pm, there was nothing segregating paying customers from random loiterers (aka people who harass me for money), and there weren't enough police around to keep my car from being broken into.

    I ended up getting sick of it and driving down to the train station near school and taking the train downtown to save the parking fee. Public transit shows exactly how bad government is at doing something useful. If I hadn't gotten my train pass nearly for free ($5 for 4 years), I would've been pissed at the awfulness that is public transit in Dallas.

  • ||

    But I'm told by proggie pundits on the radio that's the price to pay for civilization. Or something, gorgle-googly-gub.

  • pan fried wylie||

    I've had a 3-leg commute

    These masturbation euphemisms...

  • __Warren__||

    I want Transit Mass. I want to be able to hop on some group conveyance, receive the Sacraments of my Lord and Savior and then be deposited at the destination of my choice.

  • pan fried wylie||

    This would actually be a way of increasing value to the customer. And the collection plate covers budget shortfalls.

  • GOML!||

    That story doesn't agree with a recent study which says that fewer millennials are even bothering to get driver licenses.

    http://time.com/money/4185441/.....nses-gen-x

  • ||

    All three of my niece and nephews don't have a license; more interesting, they seem indifferent to it.

    We couldn't wait to turn 16 for that reason. It was a rite of passage to get the independence that came with a driver's permit. Shit, I knew how to operate a vehicle by 13.

  • Rhywun||

    I know I'm an outlier (Gen-X without a license and never felt the "calling") but for millenials I could speculate that the Internet might have something to do with it.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    I don't think it's generational as opposed to geographical. For example, I lived in Bangkok for 5 years and I never once thought about getting behind the wheel there. Not even counting the corrupt traffic cops and the nightmare congestion, if you could afford to ride the subway or skytrain it was a no-brainer.

  • Rhywun||

    Well, sure, it varies in other countries.

    But there is supposedly a generational difference within the US.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    The chart shows what I suspect is evidence of the chilling effects of teenage probationary licenses. Notice that the data starts evening out when probationary restrictions and college restrictions on cars are relaxed (age 25, give or take).

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    Well, sure, it varies in other countries.

    I wasn't thinking about countries as much as population density.

  • Sevo||

    Heroic Mulatto|4.30.16 @ 10:32PM|#
    "I wasn't thinking about countries as much as population density.'

    Agreed there is the flight from the suburbs to the city in the US, but I'm also pretty sure there is a lengthening of 'dependence' among US 'young adults'.
    When I was 22, I'd started my first company, and while it was uncommon, no one looked at me strangely. Now, if you're 22, you might well be a professional student at some school or returning to the family house until you move out (or GET moved out).

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    Now, if you're 22, you might well be a professional student at some school or returning to the family house until you move out (or GET moved out).

    The PC police will ream you up the ass for voicing such condemnation for the infantilization of millennials.

    I graduated engineering school at 22 and was making $65k+benefits at 23 (in 2011). I couldn't even begin to count how many of my cohort either moved back home or went to grad school because they weren't employable after getting a BA degree. Guess what? I was working my ass off through college, and had almost 2 years of work experience before I got my diploma. Most of my cohort knew more about the offerings at the local bars than the contents of their textbooks. I have very little pity for people who get pantsed by reality after they spent 4 years partying and generally fucking around.

    However, nothing compares to the bullshit I see at law school. So many of my classmates are graduating with $200k in debt and their only job prospects are at $35-45k, if at all.

  • Cytotoxic||

    We're the same age but you made more money in 2011 than I have yet to.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    I've been pointing my life toward a high income career (patent law) since high school, so I have made and will continue to make more than most people our age. I also have worked harder and more than most people our age. I'm a living testament to the fact that if you work your ass off, you can still get ahead.

  • Pompey||

    I'm sorry to hear that. What's your profession?

  • Pompey||

    You getting a firm to cover your school costs, or are you making law school happen some other way?

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    I have a 50% scholarship at school, and the rest is mostly debt financed. We occasionally cashflowed a semester based on the money I was making working (and the money my wife makes... which, until recently, was not much), but most of our income has gone to making life less inconvenient, given that I've been so busy. For the last 2-3 years, it's been "swipe the card" any time something breaks. I'm usually pretty handy, but I just don't have time to wrench on a 15 year old car or a 10 year old air conditioner.

    If we had to do it again, we would've just rented an apartment near campus instead of buying a house 15 miles away. The house made sense at the time, but there were massive negative (financial) consequences when I switched jobs and had a 20 mile commute to work every day.

    We're beating ourselves up about our debt load (which, all-in, should be around $120k after we sell the house), but assuming that I don't screw things up at my internship this summer, I'll have enough income to fix that in 2 years, give or take.

  • Pompey||

    You have a hard science bachelor degree, isn't it? Couldn't find a IP clerk gig at a firm that would cover the balance of your tuition needs or in full? The last time I looked into that kind of thing and talked to some firms about 5 years ago, such positions in the Boston area provided a pretty healthy - but not amazing - $70k salary on top of covering law school tuition.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    You have a hard science bachelor degree, isn't it?

    CompE

    Couldn't find a IP clerk gig at a firm that would cover the balance of your tuition needs or in full?

    I had a few offers, but I didn't want to limit my options. I was also under the naive thought that we would be able to cashflow it. That was before my wife took a 40% paycut and I took a 25% hours cut.

    such positions in the Boston area provided a pretty healthy - but not amazing - $70k salary on top of covering law school tuition

    After my 1L summer, I got a couple offers like that. I was already working at a bigger firm, so I was hoping to trade some short-term money for the "prestige" of having a bigger firm on my resume. I hate the prestige whoring that happens in law, but I'm happy to play the game if that's what it takes to end up where I want.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    You don't need a license when either (1) your helicopter mom is available at your beck and call for all transportation services, or (2) you live in dense urban/suburban housing and all your friends are within a half-mile of you.

    Also, most jurisdictions have made it such a pain in the ass to get and use your license before you turn 18 that many kids just don't want to deal with it. What's the point of getting your license if you can't have your friends in your car until you're 18?

  • invisible finger||

    All three of my niece and nephews don't have a license; more interesting, they seem indifferent to it.

    Uber and Lyft have a lot to do with that.

    For the 4-6 rides you take every week, that's could be 60-80 bucks. $320 a month.

    Do the math for car payment, insurance, registration, parking, etc. and spending the money on Uber rides is cheaper. My niece lived in Boston and now in NYC. She has no driver's license and rarely takes the bus/train. It's either walking or it's Uber. If she lived in a less-dense area, she would probably get a license and an old car for some of the errands that require a two-mile trip instead of four blocks, but would probably still take Uber to dinner, movies, etc. if they were to the congested parts of town. She just doesn't like to drive in heavy traffic.

  • Sevo||

    "That story doesn't agree with a recent study which says that fewer millennials are even bothering to get driver licenses."
    Yes, and assuming that study is correct, over 3/4 of them have licenses. And they seem to be buying cars:

    "As Reason Foundation's Director of Transportation Policy Bob Poole noted recently, J.D. Power's and Bankrate.com report that car buying is surging among millennials. This data contradict a 2014 paper from the Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) claiming young people were no longer attracted to automobiles and therefore the U.S. should divert even more money to transit."

  • Rhywun||

    Over 3/4? In my cohort, it was about 95% by the age of 18.

  • Sevo||

    I understand, but the reduction is to ~3/4, not the 'nobody's getting a license any more!' claims.
    Plus, given that the 'pajama kid' cohort is still living at school or with Mom, they may well be getting licenses later when they wanna take the GF skiing, for instance.

  • Rhywun||

    nobody's getting a license any more!

    I don't think anybody is seriously claiming that.

  • Sevo||

    No, I don't think they are "seriously" claiming that, they are simply writing scare headlines to support a POV.

  • Rhywun||

    So... kind of like the misdirection that Reason writers use when pointing at obvious failures like the DC streetcar while ignoring the record levels of ridership in cities like NYC.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    I think it's really hard to classify the state of public transportation on a national level. It's all over the place.

    NYC is a massive outlier, though.

  • ||

    Your second chart basically shows that if you build convenient mass transit people will use it. It's not an accident that as you move down/right along that chart you get to cities with better and more extensive mass transit systems.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    Your second chart basically shows that if you build convenient mass transit people will use it.

    Or it shows that it makes more sense as population density increases.

  • Rhywun||

    Well, NYC's mass transit was largely built in anticipation of future need. That was a different era, of course.

  • Sevo||

    Eurynom0s|4.30.16 @ 11:21PM|#
    "Your second chart basically shows that if you build convenient mass transit people will use it. It's not an accident that as you move down/right along that chart you get to cities with better and more extensive mass transit systems."

    Prove "convenient" and show causation, please.
    I'm guessing those cherries you picked are sour.

  • Rhywun||

    NYC is probably the only city left in the US with transit that could plausibly be called "convenient".

  • ||

    Where do you live and have you tried getting around NYC during rush hour by car instead of taking the subway?

  • Sevo||

    Rhywun|4.30.16 @ 11:07PM|#
    "So... kind of like the misdirection that Reason writers use when pointing at obvious failures like the DC streetcar while ignoring the record levels of ridership in cities like NYC."

    Yeah, you need to write an article showing how their screwing up. I'll be waiting.

  • Sevo||

    "Yeah, you need to write an article showing how their screwing up. I'll be waiting."

    Including the cherry-picking as shown in Trshmnstr, terror of the trash's post.
    Somehow, I'll bet it ends up being like your defense of rent-control, how it's just fine if you can game the system right.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    Trshmnstr, terror of the trash's

    Trshmnstr or Trashy is just fine. We're on a first-name basis here Sevo.

  • Rhywun||

    your defense of rent-control, how it's just fine if you can game the system right

    This again? How is that any different from taking advantage of tax loopholes?

    And for the record, I never defended it and I am moving away from it at the soonest opportunity.

  • Rhywun||

    Oh, and moreover - I am not even subject to it. I am paying market rate now, thank you very much.

  • Rhywun||

    They're not "screwing up", they're just not telling the whole story.

  • AlmightyJB||

    Our bus system in Columbus really just isn't designed well. If they had routes around the outbelts hitting the suburbs in conjunction with local shuttles it might be practical. But two way bus service between downtown and the ghettos really only works for people with court dates.

  • Playa Manhattan.||

    Funny, that.

  • Rhywun||

    I would imagine about 99% of the people in the suburbs already own a car so why bother?

    Meanwhile a lot of cities are throwing money at "light rail" to try to attract these same people downtown while neglecting the city services that might actually attract ridership.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Battle Of Celebs Rihanna Vs. Beyoncé: A Report Card On Who’s Winning

    Ha ha, just trolling you...that article is ten months old and is like waaaaay out of date.

  • Rhywun||

    Kudos for finding the most trivial, pointless web page in all of history.

  • ||

    Ditto.

    Although, Ed did a good job with Jay-Zed and Bounce the other day.

  • Rhywun||

    Piling on to that idiocy was kinda fun.

  • Notorious UGCC||

  • Notorious UGCC||

  • Notorious UGCC||

    There's a new Pee-Wee Herman movie

    Actual quote from the article: "There's an inherent catch-22 for a long-awaited film like Big Holiday: Your audience is so desperate and eager that a significant portion will inevitably be disappointed by the final product."

  • DenverJ||

    Haven't read the comments yet, so don't know if this has been covered: Public transportation enables poor people to get to work. Does the cost of public transportation outweigh the cost of welfare type payments that would be otherwise paid to those people if they couldn't get to work?

  • Rhywun||

    Under the current political climate where transit must be priced at the lowest cost that the poor can afford? I doubt it.

    I argue for realistic fares and getting the pubsec unions the hell out of it, but I'm not optimistic on either of those things.

  • Sevo||

    "Does the cost of public transportation outweigh the cost of welfare type payments that would be otherwise paid to those people if they couldn't get to work?"

    You think 'the poor' wouldn't find work they can get to? Car-pool? Bike?
    Your presume they must go where the transit goes; might be the other way round.

  • Rhywun||

    Heh, the last time the NYC subway was knocked out by a rainstorm the city was at a standstill. Car-pools and bikes only go so far.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    The cynical person in me says that public transit subsidizes unsustainable living arrangements in urban areas.

  • Rhywun||

    I find that highly dubious, given than urban people use less space - but even so, there is no reason other than politics that transit has to "subsidize" anything.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    there is no reason other than politics that transit has to "subsidize" anything.

    Taxpayer subsidized public transit incentivizes people to live further from their place of employment than they otherwise would. Without subsidized public transit, urban dwellers would live much closer to their jobs than they currently do. This is why things like the boroughs existed in the first place. It was much more efficient to live and work in your (extended) neighborhood when it wasn't cheap and fast to get across town.

  • Rhywun||

    Taxpayer subsidized public transit incentivizes people to live further from their place of employment than they otherwise would.

    So do taxpayer-subsidized roads - those which are not paid for by gas taxes, which is most local roads.

    I have mentioned already that fares should cover the cost - I think we agree there. And in growing cities like NYC and SF it is not only poor people using transit.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    So do taxpayer-subsidized roads - those which are not paid for by gas taxes, which is most local roads.

    Yep, we don't disagree there. Related: I wouldn't shed a tear if suburbs died a horrifying death.

    I think that subsidized transport creates suburban sprawl among other things. It's not necessarily "bad," but it's a market distortion.

  • C. Anacreon||

    I think that subsidized transport creates suburban sprawl

    I really don't get the hate for 'suburban sprawl'. It always seems to come from people who love living in the best big-city neighborhoods. What specifically about a growing suburban limit line makes you all so upset? The vanishing prairie?

    You never go very deep outside of town except when heading somewhere on vacation, and I'm sure as you whiz past a new housing development along a freeway far from downtown, you scoff and say how pathetic it all is.

    But a couple of key points --

    1) city apartment living is not for everyone. It tends to be best when you are young and don't have kids, or are old and the kids have moved out. But when you have a family, having a house and yard makes sense for most people. And often, especially for younger families, that sprawl suburb is the one that is affordable for them as their 'starter home'.

    2) the design of everyone working in the big city downtown and living in the outskirts is what leads to all the traffic/transportation problems. But the reverse commute is virtually empty! Sprawl can create new employment centers, where people who live in the city actually commute to the suburbs to work, on formerly empty trains and opposite sides of freeways. Think of this -- if San Francisco had prevented sprawl, we wouldn't even have Silicon Valley.

    Scoff and smirk all you want, city-types. Reasonable and carefully-done sprawl can be a good thing.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    I really don't get the hate for 'suburban sprawl'. It always seems to come from people who love living in the best big-city neighborhoods. What specifically about a growing suburban limit line makes you all so upset? The vanishing prairie?

    It's the opposite. I hate suburban sprawl because it brings the city-slickers further out with their HOAs and zoning commissions and "muh pruhpurty vehluez" whining. God forbid I want to grow a garden within view of the street or have some damn chickens for the eggs.

    I hate suburban sprawl because it's the worst parts of the city, but spread out so that traffic sucks for miles and miles and miles.

  • Sevo||

    Rhywun|4.30.16 @ 11:42PM|#
    "So do taxpayer-subsidized roads - those which are not paid for by gas taxes, which is most local roads."

    Uh, first, they are to be paid by gas taxes, which (in CA) they would be if the money weren't vacuumed off for 'bike lanes and mass transit'.
    Besides which, I'd really love to see how food gets to grocery stores on mass transit. I'm sure you have the answer to this.
    I'll be waiting.

  • Rhywun||

    if the money weren't vacuumed off for 'bike lanes and mass transit

    Which I don't defend.

    I'm sure you have the answer to this.
    I'll be waiting.

    My answer is that those costs be tacked onto the price of food. Since I don't drive on local roads - which are paid out of local taxes & property taxes, not gas taxes - why should I pay for it? That's all.

  • Sevo||

    "My answer is that those costs be tacked onto the price of food."
    They are. Not only food but every good you buy.
    -------------------------------------
    "Since I don't drive on local roads - which are paid out of local taxes & property taxes, not gas taxes - why should I pay for it? That's all."
    Why should you pay for delivered food? Clothes? Hardware? Do you hope that only other people will pay for the costs of delivering those goods? Do you think they get there on local roads from two blocks down the street?
    But you travel on local mass transit; why should I pay to get your sorry butt across town?
    Do you really want to keep this up?

  • Rhywun||

    Do you really want to keep this up?

    Since you won't argue in good faith - no, I do not.

  • Sevo||

    Rhywun|5.1.16 @ 12:43AM|#
    "Since you won't argue in good faith - no, I do not.:"

    OK, shitbag, stuff it!
    I have NEVER argued in bad faith. Not once, and I defy you to find a cite to prove your claim.
    You, you pathetic piece of crap, have been busted several times for inventing reasons that feeding off the public teat is 'not really all that bad'.
    If you don't want to be called on bullshit, don't post it. You seem to find that hard to do.

  • Rhywun||

    You, you pathetic piece of crap, have been busted several times for inventing reasons that feeding off the public teat is 'not really all that bad'.

    I think you're imagining shit that I have never said.

  • Pompey||

    Chill out and pop a suppository, broheim.

  • Sevo||

    "Taxpayer subsidized public transit incentivizes people to live further from their place of employment than they otherwise would. Without subsidized public transit, urban dwellers would live much closer to their jobs than they currently do."

    Perhaps, but it would be the jobs that moved, not the workers.
    In SF, there is no cheap housing (rent controlled units are almost totally occupied by middle class or more). 'Low-income' workers have to travel from quite a distance to their jobs, which is why SF will become a 'case study' in how raising the m-w didn't cause a loss of jobs. $15/hr is just keeping pace...
    Anyhow, you're right in that it distorts the labor market; those 'low-income' folks can now travel here, which means the employers who should be closer to the workers are here; the taxpayers are subsidizing the employers.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    Perhaps, but it would be the jobs that moved, not the workers.

    Agreed.

  • invisible finger||

    given than urban people use less space

    No they don't.

    Take away the yards, and the housing units/living spaces are about the same. And for the lack of yards, the buildings over 5 stories tall use LOTS of energy (and space) for elevators, hallways, water and sewer pipes and lines, HVAC lines and duct work, etc.

  • Sevo||

    Rhywun|4.30.16 @ 11:12PM|#
    'Heh, the last time the NYC subway was knocked out by a rainstorm the city was at a standstill. Car-pools and bikes only go so far.'

    Sarc? Stupidity?

  • Rhywun||

    Um... I live here and it happened. If you think car-pools and bike lanes can solve NYC's transportation needs you are sorely mis-informed.

  • Sevo||

    Rhywun|5.1.16 @ 12:10AM|#
    "Um... I live here and it happened. If you think car-pools and bike lanes can solve NYC's transportation needs you are sorely mis-informed."

    So, stupidity?
    Why am I not surprised?

  • Rhywun||

    I'm sorry if you have no idea of what NYC actually looks like or how it operates. But to explain: transit carries something like 80% of workers in Manhattan. The road and bridge infrastructure is simply incapable of replacing that.

  • Sevo||

    Rhywun|5.1.16 @ 12:22AM|#
    "I'm sorry if you have no idea of what NYC actually looks like or how it operates"

    I'm not really sorry you have no idea how stupid your comments are.
    You might start with returning to *WHY* NYC is arranged as it is and start from there, but I'm not sure it will help.
    Tell us again how that rent control is really not all that bad; maybe someone else is willing to help.

  • Rhywun||

    I guess you just want to keep feeding words into my mouth so I see no reason to continue. Consider this a "win" if you want.

  • Sevo||

    Rhywun|5.1.16 @ 12:42AM|#
    "I guess you just want to keep feeding words into my mouth so I see no reason to continue. Consider this a "win" if you want."

    Yeah, poor Rhywun is a victim of being called on bullshit once more. Such a shame! Consider it a "victimisation" if you want. Poor, poor Rhywun, always the loser....

  • Rhywun||

    You might start with returning to *WHY* NYC is arranged as it is and start from there,

    Sigh. OK, I give up. What does this have to do with my statement that NYC's current infrastructure is not up to handling a transit outage? Are we arguing at cross purposes?

    Because your repeated replies that I'm just stupid are not what I expected over the years.

  • Sevo||

    "What does this have to do with my statement that NYC's current infrastructure is not up to handling a transit outage?"

    OK, first you argue that NYC cannot exist without subsidized mass transit, which ignores that subsidized mass transit *caused* the density of NYC.
    Then when I point out that, absent those subsidies, the jobs would move to where the workers would find other means of getting to the re-located jobs, you then point out that a massive failure of mass transit somehow proves your claim that mass transit is a requirement!
    You are not thinking clearly, and that is the nicest way I can put it.

  • Rhywun||

    you argue that NYC cannot exist without subsidized mass transit

    Nope. I never said that. In fact, I argued several times on this page *against* subsidies.

    absent those subsidies, the jobs would move to where the workers would find other means of getting to the re-located jobs

    My example was a *temporary* failure. You're positing a long-term change.

  • Pompey||

    Uh......

  • Notorious UGCC||

    I bet you missed the Nancy Drew Sleuths Convention. For shame.

  • lap83||

    I found a message about it in the hollow oak but then I dropped it on Larkspur Lane and forgot to go

  • Almanian's Rusty Woodchipper||

    My "new" '63 Mercury will seat about 50 inside, and another....I'm gonna say 30 in the trunk. Fucking car is YUGE. I love it.

    And yet no one to ride in it but my sweet poo, Mrs. Almanian, and my granddaughter (she LOVES playing in this car).

  • SIV||

    What's the driveline? Anything cool like a 427 with a 3 on the tree?

  • PapayaSF||

    Nice. Is it one with a reverse-angle rear window that goes down? Those were excellent in the days when air conditioning was rare.

  • ||

    Deep Purple inducted.

    Fucken-A.

  • SIV||

    The Troggs are never gonna get in. They should have been inducted last century.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Can you name *two* great songs by them?

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Because I've been looking at YouTube, and they only did one good song.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Just kidding, I mean this song.

  • SIV||

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

  • Notorious UGCC||

  • Notorious UGCC||

  • SIV||

  • Notorious UGCC||

  • SIV||

  • Notorious UGCC||

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Nobody out-Sixtieses me.

    Take that.

    And that.

  • ||

    Steve Miller was cool.

  • Suell||

    His older stuff was incredible.

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xGFTBNy3Hdk

  • ||

    LOVE that song. In fact that and this one were the first Miller tunes I listened to:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5lp7x6rmHgM

  • Suell||

    Great one. Brings me back to high school in the early 90's when we were huge Stevie Miller fans. Another great one here....

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Zoroo4NU4YA

  • Notorious UGCC||

    13 Ways To Have A Feminist Mother's Day

    Before you make fun of this article, bear in mind that the author's name is Perelandra Beedles.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    I was watching Look Who's Back on Netflix last night (it's amusing, even though it gets a little preachy at the very end), and I learned a new German phrase. "der erhobene Zeigefinger", which translates as "the raised index finger." Evidently, in German it implies that you focus so much on moralizing at people that you alienate them.

    This article is the perfect example of that.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "a new German phrase. "der erhobene Zeigefinger", which translates as "the raised index finger.""

    "No, just raise your index finger, not your whole right arm!"

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "(it's amusing, even though it gets a little preachy at the very end)"

    That was my reaction to the novel.

  • Chipper Morning Wood||

    There were several instances during that movie when I felt very guilty about laughing my ass off.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    I think the whole dog scene, including when he was harassing the driver with its carcass, was award-winning cinema.

  • straffinrun||

    Was living in Denver when they built their light rail system. My friend and I decided to hop on it one night to see where it went. Maybe 5 other passengers on it when we reached the 5 points area which isn't an area 2 white boys want to be on a Saturday night. It was the last stop of the last train. The conductor (?) saw us and told us to get back on the light rail, but to keep our heads down until we got back to the depot. You could say he was racist, except he was black.

  • commodious spittoon||

    A sight for sore eyes, to the blind, would be awful majestic.

  • Notorious UGCC||

  • The Bearded Hobbit||

    Number One Daughter moved to the city to go to college. Daily she would go from her apartment to UNM to her job at Cracker Barrel, then back home. I'm not a fan of public mass-transit but I figured that if she's paying for it with taxes then she might as well use it. She told me that she got off of work at 10:45 and the buses stopped running at 10:00.

    Apparently no one needs to go anywhere in Albuquerque after 10PM.

    ... Hobbit

  • Granny Weatherwax||

    My oldest rode South Shore then the El to college in Chicago but because of the wonky schedules she had to leave the house at 4 in the morning to make 8 o'clock classes. She couldn't get her car fast enough. My youngest just bought a car, she mass transited and biked for 3 years in Indy (IUPUI), but even that tough bug called it quits after the second bike was stolen and the sheer hell of months trying to ride a bike in a snowstorm with automobiles bent on her physical destruction.

  • Notorious UGCC||

  • Agile Cyborg||

    I was on this odd planet recently scraping a plastic fork against a plastic bowl filled with plant life blended with spices gleaming with suns and matter collected from the dreams of the imaginative and this odd glow bobbed mysteriously behind the peeling paint of a nondescript garage in an alley plucked from a million similars. The photons of the foodologies that conquested my night vision at that moment could barely compete with a lonely garage memory. The which I presume was the memory where my fingers lightly and gently peeled back the berries of a lovely pussy bush under the glow of blondish rivers sparkling in the glow of youthful shiverings. She whispered an entire one thousand planets into the side of my head and the universe exploded with swarms of dreams all layered with innumerable times dancing on the heads of midget stars flicking comets every the fuck everywhere pianos live. And grass became hyper green and blue became monstrously vivid like a blue sun fucked the sky with super blue jizz lizards.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    a blue sun fucked the sky with super blue jizz lizards

    AC, you paint a picture like none other.

  • Chipper Morning Wood||

    Tell us more about this pussy bush. Would it grow here on Earth?

  • Notorious UGCC||

    Welcome back, Agile!

    Let's try another episode of AC versus James Joyce:

    "And that salubrated sickenagiaour of yaours have teaspilled all my hazeydency. Forge away, Sunny Sim! Sheepshopp. Bleating Goad, it is the least of things, Eyeinstye! Imagine it, my deep dartry dullard! It is hours giving, not more. I’m only out for celebridging over the guilt of the gap in your hiscitendency. You are a hundred thousand times welcome, old wort-sampler, hellbeit you’re just about as culpable as my woolfell merger would be. In effect I could engage in an energument over you till you were republicly royally toobally prussic blue in the shirt after."

  • Agile Cyborg||

    Breathe is and should be long. It should breathe deep and sharp. your lungs connect with the ether searching for stories filled with orgasms so your fucking lungs can feed dump trucks of fucking tiny machines into the coalescence of everyday steps that transform the thing we exist within. Boxes of energy and transcendent slivers of quests we barge into the alleys of our nightmares fighting the fucking future for a cause and a dream.

  • Cytotoxic||

    OT: I looked up Mexico in Google News. The first article is a Breittard 'news' headline breathlessly informing us that Mexico is 'sending colonists, not immigrants'. I can't wait for the tears come November.

  • Dangerous Buffoon||

    Did the article say anything about Peacenazis? They so scary!

  • Cytotoxic||

    I didn't read it, but peacenazis are an actual problem unlike illegal immigrants.

  • Dangerous Buffoon||

    Preach it brother-man! Peaxenazis are a threat only surpassed by chuppacabras and the methodists!

  • Agile Cyborg||

    Ever sit back on a slip of rock and let the earth talk to you? Arms and mind spreading the rainbows of settling suns. Flesh merging with drastic molecular fogs sweeping from the plains of histories smashing into the common conquest of modern self... quietly immersed in the revolutions of the earthen conversation.

  • Agile Cyborg||

    Reason shivers with the loveliest men and odd queens.

  • Sevo||

    Sorry, AC (and happy to see you back!), but Obo's joke writers get obligatory chuckles:

    "Obama out: President takes last shots at official Washington"
    [...]
    "And he acknowledged that the years had taken their toll. "I'm gray, grizzled ... counting down the days to my death panel."
    http://www.sfgate.com/entertai.....385392.php

    And he thinks that's funny, given that he's exempt from his disaster. Ha, and ha.

  • Notorious UGCC||

    "Obama out: President takes last shots at official Washington"

    Ah, yes, the good Czar is surrounded by crooked boyars who thwarted his plans to help the people.

  • Akira||

    I wonder if he's aware that such a thing actually existed in Britain's often-touted National Health Service.

    That's an inevitable outcome of putting the government in total control of healthcare: they decide when it's time to give up on someone, not the patient or the family.

  • Cytotoxic||

    I've lived the car-free transit and walking-only life in Calgary for years. Glad that's over.

  • Medical Physics Guy||

    Good-morning.

    There's no way not to be a gentrifier

    Whatever you do, you should feel guilty, and only progressive policy can make it right. And you owe everyone reparations.

  • robc||

    Posted yesterday.

  • Steve G||

    Morning.
    we tend to carry a lot of guilt about our living arrangements
    I'm picturing pajama boy here.
    At least many of the comments are giving this article the business.

  • Akira||

    "I was reminded of a book club meeting I held not long ago. The book in question was a scathing indictment of gentrification as a colonial project, and whose thesis we took turns more or less affirming. Every person in the room was white. Every person had graduated from a relatively prestigious four-year college. And every person was currently living in a neighborhood at some stage of what we typically refer to today as gentrification.

    You mean to tell me that it's mostly affluent people who sit around at batshit proggie book clubs whining about made-up and/or exaggerated problems? You mean to tell me that poor minorities are probably too busy trying to find income to piss away their time on such idiotic pursuits?

    Crazy!

  • c1390589||

    I can see what your saying... Carrie `s st0rry is great, on monday I bought themselves a BMW 5-series from bringing in $7179 this - four weeks past and-a little over, ten k lass month . with-out a doubt this is the easiest work Ive ever done . I actually started six months/ago and pretty much immediately began to bring home at least $72, p/h . browse this site...OO2...

    ========= http://www.WorkProspects.com

  • dchang0||

    To everyone talking about how self-driving cars are gonna be a solution, I don't think it's going to come to pass.

    There are two huge obstacles in the way, not including entrenched monopolies protecting their interests.

    1) About 1/3 of people who have ridden in self-driving cars get motion sickness. Most people are not going to want to get doped up on motion sickness medicines just to solve this.

    2) Who gets sued if a self-driving car kills someone? The car maker? The entity that owns the self-driving car? The persons riding in the car may also be partially at fault if the car has emergency take-over controls.

    What will happen is that after a few get sued for big payouts, they'll start programming the cars to drive very defensively and follow all laws to the letter, but tests have already found that self-driving cars that drive in this manner get stuck in situations where they simply cannot do anything at all without breaking the law or putting someone in danger. Humans have the judgment to take the risk and break the deadlock, but even if the AI is as intelligent as a human, its makers will want to program in hard rules thanks to the lawsuits, and these hard rules will constrain the AI too much.

    Eventually, customers will decide it's not worth the trouble of dealing with the hyper-defensive driving of self-driving cars and will choose human-driven vehicles with AI assists.

  • Ken Shultz||

    I'm not familiar with the problems you're mentioning, but it seems to me:

    1) From a motion sickness perspective, riding in a self driving car shouldn't be fundamentally different from riding as a passenger in a regular car. Children and dogs are prone to motion sickness in regular cars now. Over time, they get used to the sensation, get their sea legs, and the motion sickness problem goes away. Especially as more and more children grow up riding in self-driving cars, I'd expect that problem to go away.

    2) If there are situations where self-driving cars can't proceed without breaking any laws, I suspect those situations can be alleviated with standardization. Rumble strips, standardization of striping, etc. may alleviate a lot of that, and I would expect many of the traffic rules we have now to become obsolete in the future. Eventually, I'd expect there to be something like automated flight control to inform and coordinate traffic locally. In that case, e.g., what's the purpose of having laws about stop signs and stop lights when Skynet is coordinating everyone through intersections on a local control basis anyway?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YQIMGV5vtd4

  • Ken Shultz||

    I should mention that I don't look forward to this future. Riding myself around on my motorcycle is one of my great pleasures in life, and I don't expect the government will suffer me to stay free from their automated traffic control. I just think that the benefits will outweigh the downsides for so many people that those of us who want to hold out will be like the Amish in their horse and buggies. Horse and buggy is uncomplicated from a liability perspective, and motion sickness isn't much of a problem either--but you can't take them out on the interstate. If you want to go to downtown Philadelphia, you need to use a car.

  • Bubba Jones||

    The transition is problematic. You can't eliminate red lights until everyone is self driving.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Or you can't marginalize the people who aren't using driverless car technology until they're no longer a sufficiently large and influential part of the commuter traffic.

    There was a lot of tension between horses and "horseless carriages" when they were first introduced, too. Probably a bigger infrastructure gap, too, because the roads weren't even paved with asphalt. The benefits of horseless carriages were such that we rolled out the roads, bridges, stoplights, and other infrastructure to support them. I think it's a shorter jump from where the supporting infrastructure is now to where it needs to be for driverless cars than it was from where we were in horse and buggy days to the automobile age.

    As driverless cars are now, too, it isn't all or nothing. You can turn it on when you're on the freeway. In the near future, driverless car technology may start coming standard on all future cars. If i want to go downtown in my 1950 Olds Rocket 88, maybe I'll need to get a driverless module installed. But the desire for driverless technology is already present in the market--people are already paying a premium for it.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2geQ4hvvkNA

    So, it isn't a question of whether people want it, really. It's a question of how quickly it scales. 20 years ago, hardly anyone in China could afford a cell phone. Now there are almost as many people with cellphone in China as there are people.

    http://tinyurl.com/hjxnr8v

  • Ken Shultz||

    "20 years ago, hardly anyone in China could afford a cell phone. Now there are almost as many people with cellphone in China as there are people."

    We rolled out a lot of infrastructure to make that possible, by the way.

    I remember when consumer ISPs like Prodigy didn't upgrade their service past 16 bit because there wasn't anybody that was going to need it more than that.

    But entrepreneurs didn't wait for the ISPs to roll out the infrastructure. They invented Quake III, Napster, and YouTube, and consumer demand prompted the telcos to lay down all the carbon fiber.

    Driverless cars are the killer app. If the government were out of the way, the infrastructure bottleneck to support them would be an opportunity rather than a problem. Right now, watching the government talk about spending money on mass transit in the face of driverless car technology is like watching them expand the US Postal Service in the face of the emergence of email. If they have to squander our taxpayer money on something, it might as well be on a technology that isn't likely to become useless in our lifetimes.

  • Chip Woodier||

    2) Limited access. You simply won't be allowed to enter unless it's under AI control. Stick to the surface streets, peasant.

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    They'll stripe a "geezer lane" alongside the bike lane for people who don't have self-driving cars.

  • johnl||

    There is a discontinuity in that chart in 1983 that makes it suspect. Maybe there is an explanation but it looks fishy.

  • mls||

    They're data published in 2015 by the American Public Transportation Association, the primary transit lobbying group (although NYC's MTA just resigned). As for possible explanations for 1983, did you take the NYC subway then? Have you ever watched the movie The Warriors?

  • mls||

    In seriousness, there was a major NJ Transit strike in 1983. Remember that the largest share of U.S. transit trips take place in the New York metro area.

  • Bubba Jones||

    The decision makers live in NYC and DC where subways and trains are actually used.

  • Uncle Jay||

    Mass Transit Use Is Declining As Millennials Buy More Cars
    Turns out young people actually like driving.

    While being indoctrinated in Amerika's re-education camps (colleges and universities) the students will always regurgitate how much mass transit is to their over-educated idiots who have control over their grades and educational future.
    However, once liberated from the chains of academia, the emancipated slaves purchase their first muscle car.
    Just like their professors drive.

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