Essentially the result of petroleum-related multinational concerns, the great car economy tries to maximize the demand for gasoline and related fuels at the expense of more energy-efficient means of transportation, such as walking, cycling, the new SegwayDevice
or mass transit. In collaboration with tire and construction companies, the west coast of the UnitedStates
has in particular been converted to a great car economy with the removal of electric trolley rail systems and the building of large motor vehicle highway networks.
This is essentially the old "National City" conspiracy theory. See http://www.straightdope.com/classics/a2_335.html
The presence or absence of a conspiracy is irrelevant to the key point that car-based economies perpetuate car-based economies at the expense of alternatives.
Can't this be said of
non-car-based economies, as well? If you build a dense, urban arcology (a self-contained city-sized habitat) with great transit but no room for cars, aren't you perpetuating a non-car-based economy at the expense of an alternative car-based economy? I think it would be more appropriate to say that car economies and non-car economies are mutually exclusive, without implying that it's the one that's driving out the other.
Certainly, the two could be seen as competing memplexes with extended phenotypes. Unfortunately, the GreatCarEconomy
seems to have a greater memetic fitness than many alternatives. This is not to say that the GreatCarEconomy
is better for the people living in it. Many of its memeticly fit features depend on the money made out of it and the TragedyOfTheCommons
. -- AndyMorris
"A person is a car's way of making more cars."
Whatever happened to the 1950's Mobilgas Economy Run? When I was a kid, there were some very strange car things going on. Like GM Motoramas. And you should look at these new Ford City electric cars; they are popping up here in SanDiego
, beep beep.
Have people seen the great short film made by the Martian Film Board about their first observations of the Earthlings? It described how Earthlings like to speed very fast on roads, how they mate in a place called a "junk yard" to beget new Earthlings, how they nobly house 4-limbed parasites inside their bodies, and how those parasites build huge multi-storied nests which must be periodically demolished for the Earthlings' roads. (It's a Canadian film.)