perhaps people who constantly tout "manly" [whatever] are insecure about their own relationship to gender. likewise, perhaps people who constantly tout "smart" [whatever] are insecure about their own relationship to intelligence.
You glossed over it, but as you said, we're bailing out automakers and paying for more roads for cars to be used on. You want to talk about actually easing congestion? We need to go beyond merely packing more cars onto our roads. We need to be talking about beefing up infrastructure to provide fast, efficient public transit. It does not make sense to have each commuter travel in his or her own individual multi-ton vehicle.
Scott Belcher is clearly in the pocket of the auto industry and the "solutions" he presents are just more of the same dressed up in new terminology.
Why is peak oil production NEVER an element in these sorts of discussions? Is your guest even aware of the notion of peak oil and what its implications are?
Why does The Intelligent Transportation Society of America focus on the car, as well as big, multi-million (often billion) tech, when so-called "smart paratransit" can be implemented with very low cost, reliable technology. For example: anyone with an iPod sitting on a city bus can know the location of the bus and transmit that to the Web, so everyone at a bus stop can know when then next bus is coming. Ditto for subways, even taxis that could come to conventient taxis stands. Even Google's new "Lattitude" service can tell you where resources are for free. For more info see:
My favorite "smart" (if slightly whimsical) transit idea is to put little wind turbines in the concrete barriers in the middle of the Jersey Turnpike which would be powered by the wind coming off all the passing cars. This electricity could be fed into the grid, or better yet, used to power a monorail that could run above the highway! Any chance of something this awesome ever actually happening?
Here's an article about the concept: http://www.metropolismag.com/story/20070110/the-new-i-jersey-barrier
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