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Old 11-22-2002, 11:57 PM   #21
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Originally posted by speedracer


I agree that driving an SUV in most situations (i.e., on a road instead of in the rough) is stoopid. But you're categorically slamming all automobiles and all automobile drivers because of the excesses of subsets of all autos and drivers.
I'm slamming the American paradigm with respect to public modes of transportation more than anything. SUV's are an easy target -- though in fact, I have nothing against people who drive them. I have a number of friends who drive SUV's. I borrowed one last spring to take a bunch of kids snowboarding. Heck, I'd love to own one myself if they weren't so wasteful.

The point is, we collectively, as a society, need to change our carefree attitude with respect to using up natural resources and creating harmful auto emissions.

Quote:
Do you know what percentage of auto emissions is produced by people who are just driving to work? Neither do I, but I bet it's pretty high.
I'd agree.

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And if the fact that most working people in America live a significant distance away from where they work rankles you---well, there are a number of very difficult social problems that you're going to need to solve if you want to eliminate urban sprawl and get everyone to move back into major cities.
I wouldn't even consider "centralizing" industry and office space -- simply because I think it would be unworkable (though for me it has little to do with urban blight and more to do with the fact that there is no need to centralize, in my opinion).

It's really this simple for me: if we Los Angelenos had a bus system that was anywhere close to being efficient, I'd use it. However, it takes me an hour-and-a-half to get to work by bus from where I live, when I can drive there in 20 minutes.

If I lived in Chicago I would use the L train to get around. Unfortunately, we have nothing like that here. The worst part is that nobody is coming up with any significant solutions.

On a national scale, sure, a lot of people have to drive a long way to get to work and in many instances it might not make sense to expect people to use public transportation even if it were available (e.g., if one had to drive to some remote location, you're not going to build a railway to get them there). But if we're this irresponsible in L.A. with respect to public transportation, then I suspect the situation is comparable in other large cities.

We Americans need to fix the problem, and it ain't gonna happen until our attitude toward public transportion (many of us refuse to use it) and an ever-dwindling supply of natural resources (we just don't care because the natural resource issue seems to be so far removed from our daily lives) changes.



*edited to fix tags
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Old 11-23-2002, 12:05 AM   #22
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I thought Jesus drove a mule, made by Hosanna Motor Co.
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Old 11-23-2002, 11:18 AM   #23
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pub crawler,

I'm not an urban planner, but it seems to me that most of the population that lives in cities doesn't live in the cities proper, but in the associated metropolitan areas. (Looking up a few figures, the city to suburb population ratio seems to average to about 1:4.) It also seems to me that there's only so far that mass transit systems can extend out of the city before they become inefficient. And since the major routes for such systems (buses, subways, commuter trains) tend to head in or out of the city, they're really not too useful for people who need to travel from suburb to suburb instead from suburb to city.

The better solution, as others have indicated in this thread, is for automobile manufacturers to develop more efficient/less polluting automobiles. (Of course, they need to have economic incentives to do so--i.e. they need to be able to manufacture inexpensive cars, the government needs to promote such R&D, etc.)

And just in case you were curious, I live and work in Cambridge, MA. I walk (15 minutes) or take a bus to work every day. I don't own a car and don't miss it. But if I lived in, say, Lexington, I'd probably drive 5 miles every morning to the Alewife T (subway) station, park my car there, then take the T for the last mile to work.
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Old 11-23-2002, 11:41 AM   #24
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Allow me to put in my input...

Having grown up near Detroit, MI and now living in Boston, MA now, I can comment on both cities relevant to this discussion. First off, we have little choice now--we have to find a viable alternative to driving, not because of anything to do with pollution, but everything to do with traffic and that we flat out don't have more room to build new and bigger roads. As it stands, the U.S. has enough trouble barely maintaining its existing roads, let alone make new ones.

Why do people live in the associated metropolitan areas of cities? Well, in Boston, for instance, you have zero incentive to! Affordable housing is a fallacy, and, unless you want to live in a condo ($250,000+) or rent the rest of your life, the fact is that you're going to move to the metro areas to buy a house...unless you want a shitty, overpriced house ($600,000+) in the city.

As for Detroit, it is an utter failure, partly because it refused to address public transportation itself. The auto industries recognized very early on in its existence that public transportation was a threat to it and bought up commuter train systems with the explicit purpose of dismantling them. As it stands, it is one of the least visitable cities, coupled with the aftermath of the 1960s race riots, which hollowed out the city completely. But Detroit can no longer sit on its ass either; some of the older suburbs are starting to suffer the same decay as the city.

So what is the real solution ultimately? Like Europe, we are going to have to invest in a real high-speed train and commuter rail system, because--like it or not--pedestrian traffic is vital for the survival of a city. People aren't going to want to drive into all that traffic, so they can just as easily drive into a suburban mall for much of their needs. Do I ultimately expect the end of driving? Hell no. But it is my expectation that we can vastly reduce the number of those driving, because it is apparent that when given viable public transportation, people will stop driving.

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Old 11-23-2002, 02:23 PM   #25
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right now

I hope he is sittiing in the back seat of a humble old 4 cylinder Toyota ( my 17 year old borrowed my car for the weekend, St Christopher is in the glove box)
Jesus has appeared in my dreams occassionally. He never even looks at the cars or even wonders what they are!! I don't think he's a petrol-head.
He did say( or was it one of his colleagues?) "the meek shall inherit the earth" So with cars having gained such prestige status here recently, that's a few folk claiming what they think is a prize now. Sorry posers, you've had what you thought was your fun.

Let me visualise...Jesus, son of Mary....he'd either have a fuel-effiecient mini-bus so he could pick up all the poor local kids and take them on outings or he'd suggest we use the collective intelligence his old man had hopes we would put to good use and come up with modes of transport that didn't steal our future.
Some combination of solar and hydro power.However it operates...it would be pink and U2 would be playing on the stereo, a "steering wheel thumper" ( someone used that term here ages ago..I still get a laugh, thanks)
honk if you're jesus.
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Old 11-23-2002, 02:52 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally posted by speedracer
pub crawler,

...since the major routes for such systems (buses, subways, commuter trains) tend to head in or out of the city, they're really not too useful for people who need to travel from suburb to suburb instead from suburb to city.

True enough, but I think we ought to look at suburb-to-suburb systems -- particulary in a place like L.A. which is essentially one giant suburb (though one could also effectively argue that L.A. is one giant urban area).

Quote:
The better solution, as others have indicated in this thread, is for automobile manufacturers to develop more efficient/less polluting automobiles.
I agree, though from my perspective the solution would still involve bettering public transportation systems as well.


Quote:
And just in case you were curious, I live and work in Cambridge, MA. I walk (15 minutes) or take a bus to work every day. I don't own a car and don't miss it. But if I lived in, say, Lexington, I'd probably drive 5 miles every morning to the Alewife T (subway) station, park my car there, then take the T for the last mile to work.

You're doing your part. I wish I could say I don't own a car.
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Old 11-23-2002, 02:55 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally posted by melon


So what is the real solution ultimately? Like Europe, we are going to have to invest in a real high-speed train and commuter rail system, because--like it or not--pedestrian traffic is vital for the survival of a city.
That's what I'm sayin'.

Quote:
...it is my expectation that we can vastly reduce the number of those driving, because it is apparent that when given viable public transportation, people will stop driving.
Yes, yes and yes.
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Old 11-23-2002, 02:59 PM   #28
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*sigh* I really think I need to get involved in politics and, specifically, the issue of public transportation because I am the only person in this nation that will make change happen.
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Old 11-24-2002, 03:35 PM   #29
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Big Grin

haha foray!
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Old 11-25-2002, 09:10 AM   #30
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I agree with everyone who said that Jesus wouldn't drive at all. Then again, we don't know.

As for the arugment dealing with miles per gallon: I think it's a joke. There IS tecnology that would allow a 40 m/p/g SUV, but the gas and oil companies wouldn't make as much money off of it, so it's "unmarketable". I think people would be more than glad to drive electric/hybrid cars, but the car manufacturers are the ones who have some qualms.
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Old 11-25-2002, 10:25 AM   #31
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Bullshit.

Yes, we need to have more economic cars for the environment and the future. Yes, I believe technology makes it more than possible, but it's the fuel and oil companies who hold the reins.

HOWEVER,

I am so sick and tired of Christians who plan bullshit marketing strategies like this. Talk about turning people away from Christianity. Give me a break. "Jesus wouldn't drive an SUV". Perhaps if He was here today in a small town and some guy came in his gas guzzling SUV and begged Jesus to cure his sick kid who resided 20 minutes outside of the small town, Jesus would hop in and save the kid.

I guess all I'm trying to say is that Christians strive to be like Jesus...but let's get the basics down (love your neighbor) before petty things like cars.

Yes, we need to protect our environment and cars are a good starting point. It becomes a problem when Jesus becomes the centre of the marketing ploy.

I am a Christian, by the way. A Christian who feels that we as Christians are the biggest turn offs to Christianity because of stunts like these.

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Old 11-25-2002, 12:11 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally posted by UltravioletU2
Bullshit.

Yes, we need to have more economic cars for the environment and the future. Yes, I believe technology makes it more than possible, but it's the fuel and oil companies who hold the reins.

HOWEVER,

I am so sick and tired of Christians who plan bullshit marketing strategies like this. Talk about turning people away from Christianity. Give me a break. "Jesus wouldn't drive an SUV". Perhaps if He was here today in a small town and some guy came in his gas guzzling SUV and begged Jesus to cure his sick kid who resided 20 minutes outside of the small town, Jesus would hop in and save the kid.

I guess all I'm trying to say is that Christians strive to be like Jesus...but let's get the basics down (love your neighbor) before petty things like cars.

Yes, we need to protect our environment and cars are a good starting point. It becomes a problem when Jesus becomes the centre of the marketing ploy.

I am a Christian, by the way. A Christian who feels that we as Christians are the biggest turn offs to Christianity because of stunts like these.

Yeah, you´re right, I agree.

Jesus drives a Harley. He got long hair, remember?
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Old 11-25-2002, 01:18 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally posted by UltravioletU2
I am so sick and tired of Christians who plan bullshit marketing strategies like this. Talk about turning people away from Christianity. Give me a break. "Jesus wouldn't drive an SUV". Perhaps if He was here today in a small town and some guy came in his gas guzzling SUV and begged Jesus to cure his sick kid who resided 20 minutes outside of the small town, Jesus would hop in and save the kid.
I agree with you completely. It really irkes me when people take a worldly concern and slap a "Christian" label or use Christanese terms in an effort to substantiate their cause.
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Old 11-25-2002, 01:39 PM   #34
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Are you going to tell me the Christian Right doesn't spiritualize political issues?
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Old 11-25-2002, 02:39 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally posted by pub crawler
Are you going to tell me the Christian Right doesn't spiritualize political issues?
Well, we all know that we're going to hell if we disagree with them!

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Old 11-25-2002, 03:28 PM   #36
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Originally posted by pub crawler
Are you going to tell me the Christian Right doesn't spiritualize political issues?
No. I have no plans to wear an "I am the Christian Right" button.

Melon - I know you know your theology better than that (yes, I know it was sarcasm)
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Old 11-25-2002, 09:38 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally posted by speedracer


Not everyone's workplaces and residences are close enough together that they can ride their high horse to work every day.
That says it best. I love the "high horse" part. I would lose my balance if I rode around on such a high horse yet managed to point my finger at people who were violating the dogmas of political correctness.

For the record, I drive a 1996 Jeep Cherokee with nearly 140,000 miles. It gets 16 miles per gallon in the city and 19 mpg on the freeway. If you don't want to be my friend because of this, then it is my loss.

Even if we had mass transit in my sprawling metropolis, it would be impractical for me to use it for I often get unscheduled calls from potential customers wanting me to come meet with them on short notice, sometimes about 10 miles away and sometimes about 90 miles away.

What would Bono drive? What would The Edge drive? What would Adam Clayton drive? What would Larry Mullen, Jr. drive? Is everyone certain that none of those lads have a Land Rover or Mercedes G-Wagon in their collection? Might want to check up on that.

~U2Alabama
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Old 11-25-2002, 11:11 PM   #38
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Originally posted by U2Bama


What would Bono drive? What would The Edge drive? What would Adam Clayton drive? What would Larry Mullen, Jr. drive? Is everyone certain that none of those lads have a Land Rover or Mercedes G-Wagon in their collection? Might want to check up on that.

I think motorcycles typically get 50 miles per gallon. If you don't mind the higher fatality rates, motorcycles are a more environment-friendly option.
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Old 11-26-2002, 03:48 AM   #39
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Originally posted by U2Bama


That says it best. I love the "high horse" part. I would lose my balance if I rode around on such a high horse yet managed to point my finger at people who were violating the dogmas of political correctness.

For the record, I drive a 1996 Jeep Cherokee with nearly 140,000 miles. It gets 16 miles per gallon in the city and 19 mpg on the freeway. If you don't want to be my friend because of this, then it is my loss.

Even if we had mass transit in my sprawling metropolis, it would be impractical for me to use it for I often get unscheduled calls from potential customers wanting me to come meet with them on short notice, sometimes about 10 miles away and sometimes about 90 miles away.

What would Bono drive? What would The Edge drive? What would Adam Clayton drive? What would Larry Mullen, Jr. drive? Is everyone certain that none of those lads have a Land Rover or Mercedes G-Wagon in their collection? Might want to check up on that.

~U2Alabama

That's great, that's nice that you drive what you drive, Bama. I'll dare say that millions upon millions of people drive cars that get the mileage your car gets or worse.

The point is, we as a society need to work on the problem of diminishing natural resources and the contamination of our environment. But I know you know that.
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Old 11-27-2002, 10:25 AM   #40
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The Problem is:

People are willing to pay for luxury things - even for extravagant colors but not for fuel efficency.
The only way i see to change this is the government, since humans kill the planet with their behaviour.
(for example high taxes for polution/gas consumption)

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