[T]he latest report on declining driving trends -- released today by the U.S. PIRG Education Fund -- argues that a rejection of car culture is here to stay. “The Driving Boom is over,” it declares. In fact, the report calculates that “If the Millennial-led decline in per-capita driving continues for another dozen years … total vehicle travel in the United States could remain well below its 2007 peak through at least 2040 -- despite a 21 percent increase in population.”Critics who attribute the ongoing documentation of millennial-cohort attitudes of disinterest in car-ownership to the enforced "lowered expectations" of the sustained economic downturn are obviously speaking from the belly of the beast of car culture, and so fail to realize that those who are not bamboozled into their own fantasies of the "romance" of car-ownership are likely to have noticed the obvious, as they have not themselves, that car culture never ever delivers on its many promises of providing eternal sexy youthfulness or rugged individual autonomy or signalling delicious affluence and success to envious strangers. Who in their right minds would ever identify car ownership with high expectations or standards, after all? Many young people who for whatever reasons have learned to live perfectly well outside of car culture are little likely to embrace its fictional attractions even if and when they can afford to do so, especially if they happen to have noticed that the actual realities of car ownership include the nightmare of traffic congestion, the headaches of maintenance and insurance, the costly demands of refueling, the reality of enormously expensive yet undistinguished and indistinguishable product, and the pollution and pointless destruction of the only the planet we happen have to live in...
Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All
Wednesday, May 15, 2013
Are We Rejecting Car Culture Just in the Nick of Time?