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6 months without a car in Detroit

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6 months without a car in Detroit

Old 02-14-18, 05:32 PM
  #76  
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Originally Posted by Mobile 155 View Post
For good or bad it is easier to trust friends and family in your own car than people you don't know anything about in a public form of transportation.
Right .... sort of ... My point was, is it Actually safer to drive?

For or instance a lot of people have a deathly fear of flying and would rather drive, but on an harm-per-mile scale driving is about the worst way to get around.

I wonder in the bus system is like that, where people never try it because of fears and prejudices and choose less safe alternatives?

For instance .... I have never had a problem on a city bus in New York or the greater Orlando areas. I didn't even see many scary people. My question then would be ... would Most people actually, in term of numbers be safer on a bus than on foot or in a car .... at those same times of day and on those same routes and destinations?

I don't care if people ride the bus or not. I don't own stock in a bus company. I am just interested in Why people do things, because the biggest problem with improving society is always People. People seem often unwilling to think, and often unwilling to question their beliefs. People often seem willing to deny whatever it is inconvenient to admit.
Originally Posted by Mobile 155 View Post
Just as an aside, my sister doesn't use the bus today even though she retired as a bus driver. He reason, it doesn't meet her scheduled appointments.
Yeah ... i often had to walk home 2.5 hours after taking a bus to work because of a lousy bus system ... and for one job, the two connecting buses missed each other so I had to sit at the downtown terminal for 45 minutes and still had to walk a mile to work after getting of the connecting bus.

Where I live now I have Never taken the bus. I don't know if it is a good system or not, because I don't need it.

I am not a big bus supporter. I really don't care either way.

There is this though .... most people think of taking the bus as "What poor people do." Except in the Greater NY area where a lot of people take buses or trains ... but more people take trains and cabs i guess ... because even with a good bus system, people prefer to be more comfortable and more coddled. (In DC things are very different too in terms of taking the train .... don't know about buses, but in DC there are all kinds of reasonably well-to-do people on the trains.)

Mostly anywhere the bus system is (at least in my experience) is considered the transport system for "The Other;" the poor, the minorities, the criminals, the Bad people .... in the minds of some residents ... while in fact almost everyone who rides the bus is just another person.

That's why I was interested in the crimes/rider/miles numbers.
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Old 02-14-18, 08:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
Right .... sort of ... My point was, is it Actually safer to drive?

For or instance a lot of people have a deathly fear of flying and would rather drive, but on an harm-per-mile scale driving is about the worst way to get around.

I wonder in the bus system is like that, where people never try it because of fears and prejudices and choose less safe alternatives?

For instance .... I have never had a problem on a city bus in New York or the greater Orlando areas. I didn't even see many scary people. My question then would be ... would Most people actually, in term of numbers be safer on a bus than on foot or in a car .... at those same times of day and on those same routes and destinations?

I don't care if people ride the bus or not. I don't own stock in a bus company. I am just interested in Why people do things, because the biggest problem with improving society is always People. People seem often unwilling to think, and often unwilling to question their beliefs. People often seem willing to deny whatever it is inconvenient to admit.
Yeah ... i often had to walk home 2.5 hours after taking a bus to work because of a lousy bus system ... and for one job, the two connecting buses missed each other so I had to sit at the downtown terminal for 45 minutes and still had to walk a mile to work after getting of the connecting bus.

Where I live now I have Never taken the bus. I don't know if it is a good system or not, because I don't need it.

I am not a big bus supporter. I really don't care either way.

There is this though .... most people think of taking the bus as "What poor people do." Except in the Greater NY area where a lot of people take buses or trains ... but more people take trains and cabs i guess ... because even with a good bus system, people prefer to be more comfortable and more coddled. (In DC things are very different too in terms of taking the train .... don't know about buses, but in DC there are all kinds of reasonably well-to-do people on the trains.)

Mostly anywhere the bus system is (at least in my experience) is considered the transport system for "The Other;" the poor, the minorities, the criminals, the Bad people .... in the minds of some residents ... while in fact almost everyone who rides the bus is just another person.

That's why I was interested in the crimes/rider/miles numbers.

The main point I was adressing was in response to this, "But yeah, I have Never heard of crime on a U.S. city bus. I am sure there has been Some ... just the odds, too many people on too many buses for two many decades ... but I cannot recall a story about someone being robbed or randomly assaulted on a bus.

The reason to be aware of what's going on is mostly to not be pestered by people begging or people desperate for attention who want to tell you tinfoil-hat stories about their lives and why they aren't the Governor of three states any more ... that kind of thing."

I simply posted my experiences and my sisters plus the report on the MTA. I cannot remember ever driving with a tin foil hat person or someone that thought they were the governor of three states in my car so my idea of who "just" people are might be different than others. I haven't met one of these people on Metrolink either I might need to see video to know what to look for.

For many of the people I know there is hardly ever a thought as to who or what class rides the bus. The main focus is how inconvenient it is or how much of their taxes goes to pay for mass transit. As far as accidents verses muggings on a bus or even dangers of air travel the conversation goes to lack of control. I know it is easier to feel by being careful we can avoid getting in an accident and to a degree the accident rate has been dropping, at least injury accidents, over the years while mass transit crime seems to be increasing. I know it is harder to give your safety over to another person like a bus driver. At least we might feel a pilot had more training then we do. ( My sister cannot back her car into a parking space so I don't know how she was at driving a bus.) And no I have no clue why that is. I also realize I live in the land of the automobile so the attitude might be different than where you live.

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Old 02-14-18, 10:32 PM
  #78  
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
I think there is some truth in this, though I think there are other factors than just density. Still, there is a very pleasant 'sweet spot' that happens when an area is dense enough to promote comfortable walking/biking/transit without growing so dense that all the trees and natural ecology get squeezed out by development.
Care to specify by name some of those locations that you would recommend as good examples of the sweet spots" that Detroit and other cities should emulate?
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Old 02-15-18, 12:29 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
Care to specify by name some of those locations that you would recommend as good examples of the sweet spots" that Detroit and other cities should emulate?
No, I wouldn't think of it in terms of emulation. I would think of it in terms of planting more trees and encouraging more use of non-driving modes. When people start to bike and walk around a pleasantly trees area, they automatically come up with other ideas for making life better, such as finding a job within a convenient car-free distance, or having shopping opportunities close by. The challenge is to get people thinking in terms of LCF, because they tend to just dismiss it if it's not already their preferred lifestyle.
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Old 02-15-18, 04:57 PM
  #80  
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
No, I wouldn't think of it in terms of emulation. I would think of it in terms of planting more trees and encouraging more use of non-driving modes. When people start to bike and walk around a pleasantly trees area, they automatically come up with other ideas for making life better, such as finding a job within a convenient car-free distance, or having shopping opportunities close by. The challenge is to get people thinking in terms of LCF, because they tend to just dismiss it if it's not already their preferred lifestyle.

You need to spend some time in a country where a majority of the people don't live any other way but to LCF. Then as you site at night and try to think things out you can wonder why so many of then dream of the day they can leve the ranks of LCF and join the modern world. I have been there and lived with them and I can tell you how things go. But you need to experience it for yourself. Then and only then will you understand China, Africa and India as they move into a world more like the us even with LCF stamped on their childhood and early life. Ask yourself why when someone has what you are trying to sell they give it away for something you are preaching against. I have listen to their dreams and your ideas are not them. And yes many of then live on dirt roads lined with trees.
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Old 02-15-18, 05:10 PM
  #81  
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
No, I wouldn't think of it in terms of emulation. I would think of it in terms of planting more trees and encouraging more use of non-driving modes. When people start to bike and walk around a pleasantly trees area, they automatically come up with other ideas for making life better, such as finding a job within a convenient car-free distance, or having shopping opportunities close by. The challenge is to get people thinking in terms of LCF, because they tend to just dismiss it if it's not already their preferred lifestyle.
IOW the areas you describe as "very pleasant 'sweet spot' that happens when an area is dense enough to promote comfortable walking/biking/transit without growing so dense that all the trees and natural ecology get squeezed out by development" exist in the reality of your imagination and wishful thinking.

Had any success convincing ANY adult of thinking in terms of LCF as you do and actually taking any action on those "thoughts"?
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Old 02-15-18, 07:00 PM
  #82  
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Interesting thread. I worked in Detroit for nineteen years. My wife still works there, though retiring in months. Much of what I read here is media hype. Yup, Detroit has issues. They have a mayor now who is trustworthy in my opinion and making progress. I wouldn't hesitate to ride in Detroit. I would apply reason and awareness, just as I would riding anywhere in the U.S.
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Old 02-16-18, 04:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Mobile 155 View Post
You need to spend some time in a country where a majority of the people don't live any other way but to LCF. Then as you site at night and try to think things out you can wonder why so many of then dream of the day they can leve the ranks of LCF and join the modern world. I have been there and lived with them and I can tell you how things go. But you need to experience it for yourself. Then and only then will you understand China, Africa and India as they move into a world more like the us even with LCF stamped on their childhood and early life. Ask yourself why when someone has what you are trying to sell they give it away for something you are preaching against. I have listen to their dreams and your ideas are not them. And yes many of then live on dirt roads lined with trees.
It's unfortunate that with all the experience you seem to have, you don't have the ability to look at the details of situations instead of lumping all factors together as either 'modern' or 'primitive.' I've explained this to you before but you'll never get it because you don't want to do anything except validate industrialism in contrast to what it isn't.

Industrialism has been an amazingly fruitful learning experience. There are so many technologies we can continue to harness and refine to continue progressing into greater sustainability. What seems to bother you is that doing so might mean using these technologies and energies more surgically in order to let more land host living soil and organisms the way it evolved to. You can't seem to grasp that we have reached a point with technology that we can deal with the problems caused by living ecology, such as insects and other pests/diseases. You can't seem to appreciate the fact that modern science gives us the ability to understand living organisms as complex networks of nano'tech' that utilizes latent heat and sunlight to power processes that perform productive labor for us. I'm not just talking about growing food and wood but also to clean the air and water and absorb CO2 from the air and use it to produce shade that cools the air and keeps ground moisture from evaporating away.

All you ever do is debate what is plain to see for many generations of people who see how nature is and always has been sustainable. Why you imagine that ever-expanding industry is sustainable and that ecological processes made of living organisms isn't I can't understand. Yes, I understand that humans are capable of harming the life around them even when they LCF, but why can't you see that overuse of industrial power, including driving and its infrastructure, is also damaging and that sustainability can't be achieved without significantly reducing the amount of cars and pavement?
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Old 02-16-18, 06:26 PM
  #84  
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
It's unfortunate that with all the experience you seem to have, you don't have the ability to look at the details of situations instead of lumping all factors together as either 'modern' or 'primitive.' I've explained this to you before but you'll never get it because you don't want to do anything except validate industrialism in contrast to what it isn't.

Industrialism has been an amazingly fruitful learning experience. There are so many technologies we can continue to harness and refine to continue progressing into greater sustainability. What seems to bother you is that doing so might mean using these technologies and energies more surgically in order to let more land host living soil and organisms the way it evolved to. You can't seem to grasp that we have reached a point with technology that we can deal with the problems caused by living ecology, such as insects and other pests/diseases. You can't seem to appreciate the fact that modern science gives us the ability to understand living organisms as complex networks of nano'tech' that utilizes latent heat and sunlight to power processes that perform productive labor for us. I'm not just talking about growing food and wood but also to clean the air and water and absorb CO2 from the air and use it to produce shade that cools the air and keeps ground moisture from evaporating away.

All you ever do is debate what is plain to see for many generations of people who see how nature is and always has been sustainable. Why you imagine that ever-expanding industry is sustainable and that ecological processes made of living organisms isn't I can't understand. Yes, I understand that humans are capable of harming the life around them even when they LCF, but why can't you see that overuse of industrial power, including driving and its infrastructure, is also damaging and that sustainability can't be achieved without significantly reducing the amount of cars and pavement?
These things are not theory to me.

You see the sky is falling and I do not. You assert that cars are the major cause of your falling world and I do not. I see technology as the only possible solution with ways to grow more food and desalinate more water. But if you want to try and make LCF a moral imperative I am willing to go there. What have you done with your ideas to relieve today's human suffering? Have you sat down with someone that had to walk 3 hours to get to a medical care holding their child in their arms all the way? I have and I wish they had access to a car. Have you stayed with a family that built their house with mud and sticks and had to have a separate small house to cook because all they had to cook with was charcoal and that leaves a black soot on the walls that they sit in while cooking? I have and wish they had electricity and or gas stoves. I would love to hear you explain to them why it is best not to have heat because it makes their bodies stronger as their children shiver till someone provides blankets and jackets they couldn't afford. And why can't they afford such things? Because they have too many children and can't support them. When sitting in a room with such people and listening to their dreams I would love to hear you explain how they don't need the advantages of what we have.

We have people living in the world today that are living your dream of no heat and no cooling and no way to keep food cold so they have to shop every day. They want a taste of the life we have and you need to go visit these places and explain how bad it would be for the rest of us if they ever get them. How cutting down trees for heat and clearing fields for planting and building cities, even small ones, is bad for sustainability. Because till you see a woman walking along a road with two children holding onto her dress as she had anther two miles to go to get home and then start dinner you can't claim the moral high ground now are you the oracle of truth in this matter.

I have even had some of those same people come over her to visit and see how we live. Care to guess what they think? I wish it were possible to solve the problems by LCF but it simply isn't. Could it be something that helps a bit? Maybe. But there are a lot of people in this forum that claim to believe in LCF that had a much bigger carbon foot print than some that are not.

I am just challenging you to put feet to your words. Double pane glass in all of your windows, LEDs for all of your lighting. New insulation in the walls and roof. Maybe living with or at least talking to someone or a family that is living just like you suggest. Walk the walk in other words. Once you have done some of that tell me what I don't understand.
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Old 02-16-18, 09:14 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike View Post
IOW the areas you describe as "very pleasant 'sweet spot' that happens when an area is dense enough to promote comfortable walking/biking/transit without growing so dense that all the trees and natural ecology get squeezed out by development" exist in the reality of your imagination and wishful thinking.
Ideals don't exist in reality, but aspects exist in various forms, fictional and non-fictional. It's like in the Truman show where Truman is trying to remember what his beloved looks like by tearing out strips of magazine-models' faces and making a composite.

Every real place has potential for improvement, just as every person does. It's just a question of achieving the right vision. People control themselves and not others, but we can communicate ideas and vision with others; and when people learn to see that better landscapes are possible by reducing driving as a share of total multi-modal transportation, they can control their own choices and vision to gradually strive in that direction. The problem is that there are competing visions being communicated by automotive interests that are more interested in bolstering sales/revenues than they are in achieving more pleasant landscapes everywhere.

Had any success convincing ANY adult of thinking in terms of LCF as you do and actually taking any action on those "thoughts"?
The question is whether I've had any success in LCF myself. You see, I'm not a top athlete like some of the cyclists in this sub-forum or on bike forums generally. I have achieved some increases in average speed and endurance for taking long bike trips, and it has made my overall health and fitness more than satisfactory, but in terms of LCF it has been a successful experiment that I have no interest in turning back from, which tells me that many more people could go LCF if they were so inclined. So what confuses me is why they aren't so inclined, considering how many bad effects the car culture has on the landscape, lifestyle patterns, etc.
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Old 02-16-18, 11:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Mobile 155 View Post
These things are not theory to me.

You see the sky is falling and I do not. You assert that cars are the major cause of your falling world and I do not. I see technology as the only possible solution with ways to grow more food and desalinate more water.
When I look at artificial technologies like desalination and industrial power usage, I see good ideas that are improved by using more established natural technologies. E.g. you can pump water uphill from the ocean and use energy to separate it from the salt, but you can also realize that water is naturally lifted and separated from the ocean/salt by evaporation. Then, when it precipitates as fresh water, it flows into rivers, lakes, aquifers, gets absorbed by living organisms, etc. So if take advantage of the natural mechanisms for utilizing sunlight to move water uphill against the force of gravity and protect it from evaporation, you are making more effective use of solar energy than if you mine up fossil fuels to make additional energy for pumping and desalinating sea water.

The problem isn't that we need more energy, more fresh water, and/or more food, but that we need to utilize the sunlight, natural water cycle, and agriculture and natural biomass more effectively/efficiently. Some industrial processes may be necessary, but the more we can minimize them, the more we can return the land and energy-pathways of the planet to their naturally-evolved state, which you should agree is the safest bet for long-term sustainability considering that the planet has been sustainable long before humans because of its natural evolutionary results.

But if you want to try and make LCF a moral imperative I am willing to go there. What have you done with your ideas to relieve today's human suffering?
I wouldn't say LCF is a moral imperative, but I think the car culture has led people to be too quick to choose driving when it would be better for their health, the environment, etc. to choose another mode. Obviously some people need to drive, but it's not that many compared with the number that don't really need to but do so anyway because they just don't bother to think about the effects and the alternatives.

Have you sat down with someone that had to walk 3 hours to get to a medical care holding their child in their arms all the way? I have and I wish they had access to a car.
Like I said, some people need to drive more than others. I wouldn't automatically say it's bad to walk with children, though, because walking is good for both parents and children. When my child was a baby, I walked all the time with a front/back pack carrier and he could sleep easy and comfortably because of the motion of walking, and when he woke up he could look at the surroundings. If you look at the positive aspects of LCF instead of defining LCF as a lack of access, you realize that driving-dependency is deprivation more than it is a benefit.

Have you stayed with a family that built their house with mud and sticks and had to have a separate small house to cook because all they had to cook with was charcoal and that leaves a black soot on the walls that they sit in while cooking? I have and wish they had electricity and or gas stoves.
Fine, but can you acknowledge that having a battery charging from a solar panel to power the electric stove would be better than a gas stove? No, because you want to deny that renewable power is better than fossil-fuel, etc. We can't have political discussions here, so it would be better to move this to P&R if you want to debate about it.

I would love to hear you explain to them why it is best not to have heat because it makes their bodies stronger as their children shiver till someone provides blankets and jackets they couldn't afford.
Mammalian bodies generate heat. Mammals have always survived by digging holes and dens and insulating our body heat. Why do you think it's better to waste energy on heating air instead of heating the air between your skin and your clothing with your body heat? Why do you think it's harder to afford jackets and blankets than heating fuel?

And why can't they afford such things? Because they have too many children and can't support them. When sitting in a room with such people and listening to their dreams I would love to hear you explain how they don't need the advantages of what we have.
It depends what you need to buy the children. Like I said, children generate their own body heat, so if you can somehow afford good warm clothing and bedding, they heat themselves. They eat but not that much until they are adolescents - and then if they eat abundant foods like grains and beans, it is not that expensive or environmentally taxing to feed them. The big challenge is training and educating them to behave reasonably and contribute positively to a sustainable economy.

We have people living in the world today that are living your dream of no heat and no cooling and no way to keep food cold so they have to shop every day.
I've seen coolers that are quite expensive still, because they keep food/ice frozen for weeks without renewing the ice. Such a cooler could be paired with a small ice-maker and powered with a solar panel. If the price comes down, this tech could provide sustainable refrigeration at a fraction of the energy used/wasted by less efficient insulation in coolers/refrigerators. The technology just has to be scaleable and scaled to serve the broadest-possible market/population.

They want a taste of the life we have and you need to go visit these places and explain how bad it would be for the rest of us if they ever get them. How cutting down trees for heat and clearing fields for planting and building cities, even small ones, is bad for sustainability. Because till you see a woman walking along a road with two children holding onto her dress as she had anther two miles to go to get home and then start dinner you can't claim the moral high ground now are you the oracle of truth in this matter.
You're confusing reforestation with de-urbanization. Developed/inhabited areas can be reforested by allowing trees and natural plants/soils to replenish around buildings and infrastructure. This provides cleaner air and water, more shade for comfort, and less evaporation of ground moisture so aquifers/wells/etc. conserve water better. This is as true for poor areas as richer developed areas. Natural growth is simply a form a wealth that can be allowed to grow by optimizing conditions. I've listened to you and others insist that there are areas where trees/forests don't grow naturally, but the reality is that ecosystems can evolve as more shade allows more ground moisture to be conserved and recycled within the local organisms. This may occur differently everywhere, but areas that grow lushly due to robust water supply could spread and expand as long as their natural ecological mechanisms are allowed to flourish and self-support.

I have even had some of those same people come over her to visit and see how we live. Care to guess what they think? I wish it were possible to solve the problems by LCF but it simply isn't. Could it be something that helps a bit? Maybe. But there are a lot of people in this forum that claim to believe in LCF that had a much bigger carbon foot print than some that are not.
Obviously people are charmed and mesmerized by industrialism and its complex of consumer products, architecture, and infrastructure. Machines are like a powerful and precise alien race that serve and protect humans so we can live like royalty. But those of us who think beyond the allure of it all are able to see how it does many forms of harm that tend to get whitewashed for various reasons. It's hard to question the overall goodness of something when the most immediate effects it produces are pleasurable and/or convenient.

I am just challenging you to put feet to your words. Double pane glass in all of your windows, LEDs for all of your lighting. New insulation in the walls and roof. Maybe living with or at least talking to someone or a family that is living just like you suggest. Walk the walk in other words. Once you have done some of that tell me what I don't understand.
Well, the most efficient insulation to install is warmer clothing and bedding, because the surface area of your body gets bigger the farther you move away from your skin. A couple square yards of warm coat is easier to 'install' than four walls and a ceiling worth of styrofoam, though if I was going to do it, I would make one room like a styrofoam cooler and just heat it with a small electric heater. There might be even more sustainable ways to heat it, but compared with heating an entire house and/or tearing off drywall to add more fiberglass, I think just adding a layer of styrofoam and then filling the gaps with spray foam in a single room would be easier and more effective. Then, the electricity for the heater might be coming from fossil fuel and/or nuclear, but the quantity of power would be so low that if every household used so little, it wouldn't be difficult to suffice with renewables such as wind and/or solar. Obviously solar generation capacity is diminished by low winter sun and short days, but with a roof full of panels and reflection off snow, you might be able to store up enough power in a battery system to keep the electric heater warm enough to keep the styrofoam-insulated room warm.

Then, put on your warm coat and go out walking and/or do other exercises to keep yourself healthy and warm with body heat so you don't have to sit in your styrofoam cooler room all day and night.
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Old 02-17-18, 12:50 AM
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
When I look at artificial technologies like desalination and industrial power usage, I see good ideas that are improved by using more established natural technologies. E.g. you can pump water uphill from the ocean and use energy to separate it from the salt, but you can also realize that water is naturally lifted and separated from the ocean/salt by evaporation. Then, when it precipitates as fresh water, it flows into rivers, lakes, aquifers, gets absorbed by living organisms, etc. So if take advantage of the natural mechanisms for utilizing sunlight to move water uphill against the force of gravity and protect it from evaporation, you are making more effective use of solar energy than if you mine up fossil fuels to make additional energy for pumping and desalinating sea water.

The problem isn't that we need more energy, more fresh water, and/or more food, but that we need to utilize the sunlight, natural water cycle, and agriculture and natural biomass more effectively/efficiently. Some industrial processes may be necessary, but the more we can minimize them, the more we can return the land and energy-pathways of the planet to their naturally-evolved state, which you should agree is the safest bet for long-term sustainability considering that the planet has been sustainable long before humans because of its natural evolutionary results.


I wouldn't say LCF is a moral imperative, but I think the car culture has led people to be too quick to choose driving when it would be better for their health, the environment, etc. to choose another mode. Obviously some people need to drive, but it's not that many compared with the number that don't really need to but do so anyway because they just don't bother to think about the effects and the alternatives.


Like I said, some people need to drive more than others. I wouldn't automatically say it's bad to walk with children, though, because walking is good for both parents and children. When my child was a baby, I walked all the time with a front/back pack carrier and he could sleep easy and comfortably because of the motion of walking, and when he woke up he could look at the surroundings. If you look at the positive aspects of LCF instead of defining LCF as a lack of access, you realize that driving-dependency is deprivation more than it is a benefit.


Fine, but can you acknowledge that having a battery charging from a solar panel to power the electric stove would be better than a gas stove? No, because you want to deny that renewable power is better than fossil-fuel, etc. We can't have political discussions here, so it would be better to move this to P&R if you want to debate about it.


Mammalian bodies generate heat. Mammals have always survived by digging holes and dens and insulating our body heat. Why do you think it's better to waste energy on heating air instead of heating the air between your skin and your clothing with your body heat? Why do you think it's harder to afford jackets and blankets than heating fuel?


It depends what you need to buy the children. Like I said, children generate their own body heat, so if you can somehow afford good warm clothing and bedding, they heat themselves. They eat but not that much until they are adolescents - and then if they eat abundant foods like grains and beans, it is not that expensive or environmentally taxing to feed them. The big challenge is training and educating them to behave reasonably and contribute positively to a sustainable economy.


I've seen coolers that are quite expensive still, because they keep food/ice frozen for weeks without renewing the ice. Such a cooler could be paired with a small ice-maker and powered with a solar panel. If the price comes down, this tech could provide sustainable refrigeration at a fraction of the energy used/wasted by less efficient insulation in coolers/refrigerators. The technology just has to be scaleable and scaled to serve the broadest-possible market/population.


You're confusing reforestation with de-urbanization. Developed/inhabited areas can be reforested by allowing trees and natural plants/soils to replenish around buildings and infrastructure. This provides cleaner air and water, more shade for comfort, and less evaporation of ground moisture so aquifers/wells/etc. conserve water better. This is as true for poor areas as richer developed areas. Natural growth is simply a form a wealth that can be allowed to grow by optimizing conditions. I've listened to you and others insist that there are areas where trees/forests don't grow naturally, but the reality is that ecosystems can evolve as more shade allows more ground moisture to be conserved and recycled within the local organisms. This may occur differently everywhere, but areas that grow lushly due to robust water supply could spread and expand as long as their natural ecological mechanisms are allowed to flourish and self-support.


Obviously people are charmed and mesmerized by industrialism and its complex of consumer products, architecture, and infrastructure. Machines are like a powerful and precise alien race that serve and protect humans so we can live like royalty. But those of us who think beyond the allure of it all are able to see how it does many forms of harm that tend to get whitewashed for various reasons. It's hard to question the overall goodness of something when the most immediate effects it produces are pleasurable and/or convenient.


Well, the most efficient insulation to install is warmer clothing and bedding, because the surface area of your body gets bigger the farther you move away from your skin. A couple square yards of warm coat is easier to 'install' than four walls and a ceiling worth of styrofoam, though if I was going to do it, I would make one room like a styrofoam cooler and just heat it with a small electric heater. There might be even more sustainable ways to heat it, but compared with heating an entire house and/or tearing off drywall to add more fiberglass, I think just adding a layer of styrofoam and then filling the gaps with spray foam in a single room would be easier and more effective. Then, the electricity for the heater might be coming from fossil fuel and/or nuclear, but the quantity of power would be so low that if every household used so little, it wouldn't be difficult to suffice with renewables such as wind and/or solar. Obviously solar generation capacity is diminished by low winter sun and short days, but with a roof full of panels and reflection off snow, you might be able to store up enough power in a battery system to keep the electric heater warm enough to keep the styrofoam-insulated room warm.

Then, put on your warm coat and go out walking and/or do other exercises to keep yourself healthy and warm with body heat so you don't have to sit in your styrofoam cooler room all day and night.

It would have been shorter if you just said, no, practicing what I preach isn't necessary. How many people do you know that believe like you do? Have you added any layers of foam? Do you have a roof full of solar panels? Have you explained to anyone that it is good for them to walk 3 hours to get medical help. Have you ever tried to explain to someone that children that are getting cold or too hot simply need to know that it isn't a problem for mammals? Just how large is your circle of friends and do any believe like you do? Have you ever gone to live like some of the people I am talking about have Lived? If not how do you know what they need to stay cool. If you don't have a roof full of solar panels how do you expect someone in Africa or India living in a house they built by themselves to have them to solar change a stove? Do you even know how many watts a electric stove takes? Do you know how many solar panels it takes to make 1000 to 3000 watts? No don't answer, I can guess. You are not a doer it seems.
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Old 02-17-18, 01:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Foldy313 View Post
Be confident. Be observant. Act like you know where you are and where you are going. And keep your emotions in check.

For example, if you are riding along and find yourself going down a street where many homes are burned out and abandoned and start to fear for your safety, don't stop and stare with your mouth hanging open. Don't point and joke with your friend about the kind of people who must be living there. Don't break into your fastest sprint without knowing where you're going. Calmly backtrack and find another route.

And if a car full of people comes along and they call you names, just keep pedaling. Don't call them names back or give them the finger. Ignore and avoid, don't escalate.

The closest call I've had in five years in Detroit was another cyclist riding up to me and baring his teeth and growling like an animal. It was so unusual the first time it took me by surprise. I just figured he was off his meds and didn't say or do anything. The second time got my hackles up, and I thought he might attack me. I told myself if he does it again, I'm going to confront him. That was a bad idea. You can't argue with crazy. Things could have gotten physical and who knows?

Fortunately, he didn't do it again, and I rode away like I should have done in the first place. And that's when I started reading up on situational awareness and safety.
Thanks for the sound advice. A bike is actually a pretty safe way to go, compared to walking or even driving a car.

I grew up in Detroit, Highland Park actually. I was carfree much of the time. My first real job was right downtown on Adams St. I got out after midnight, then took the Woodward bus home to H.P. There were a couple times I was a little scared, but I handled myself well and nothing happened.

The bike situation in Detroit generally sounds pretty good, with the Slow Rides and all. I think about moving back there when I retire in a few years.
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Old 02-17-18, 01:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Maelochs View Post
Someone who Really wants to do some work, and not just speculate,, like I am about to do ...


But yeah, I have Never heard of crime on a U.S. city bus. I am sure there has been Some ... just the odds, too many people on too many buses for two many decades ... but I cannot recall a story about someone being robbed or randomly assaulted on a bus.

The reason to be aware of what's going on is mostly to not be pestered by people begging or people desperate for attention who want to tell you tinfoil-hat stories about their lives and why they aren't the Governor of three states any more ... that kind of thing. I usually sat at the back and near the rear door ... so I guess I was one of the "undesirables" all you weak folk are afraid to meet ... . hey, nice to meet you.

New York subways? Yes, I have heard of people being robbed on subways. Buses? I cannot recall seeing that.

People who are afraid to ride buses are just afraid. People on buses are just people.

It is interesting to see how many people here who seem to respect what I write, would probably call the cops on my if they met me in person.

But ... hey, no , don't challenge your own prejudices, Never do that.


Post Script: This is sort of comical by contrast. A few years ago I did a cross-country charity ride where we did some rough camping. One urban dude from a cool climate got totally freaked out when one of the more experienced campers said stuff like, "Shake out your shoes in case scorpions crawl in over night, and if a snake falls asleep near you for body heat, don't freak, just get up slowly."

Here was a guy who had probably ridden hundreds of trains and subways and had survived in cities all over the world but he was freaked out in the desert.

The tips listed above for dealing with urban environments are no more scary to me than the tips about sleeping in the desert.

People can fear whatever they want. They can also Not fear. I tend more to change myself rather than complaining pointlessly about the world I cannot change.
I'm happy to agree with you. It's natural that people become frightened when they're in novel situations. It's important to remember the distinction between "It is dangerous here" as opposed to "I feel endangered here."
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Old 02-17-18, 06:35 AM
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
Like I said, children generate their own body heat, so if you can somehow afford good warm clothing and bedding, they heat themselves.
Said the man from Florida
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Old 02-17-18, 07:22 AM
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
When I look at artificial technologies like desalination and industrial power usage, I see good ideas that are improved by using more established natural technologies. E.g. you can pump water uphill from the ocean and use energy to separate it from the salt, but you can also realize that water is naturally lifted and separated from the ocean/salt by evaporation. Then, when it precipitates as fresh water, it flows into rivers, lakes, aquifers, gets absorbed by living organisms, etc. So if take advantage of the natural mechanisms for utilizing sunlight to move water uphill against the force of gravity and protect it from evaporation, you are making more effective use of solar energy than if you mine up fossil fuels to make additional energy for pumping and desalinating sea water.
Did you just think of this all on your own?

People (and all life on land including you) have depended on natural processes of evaporation and precipitation for hundreds of millions of years. Do you think the people that promote desalination don't know that?? Or is it possible that in some parts of the world the demand for water outstrips the available supply found thru rainfall?

While I won't claim desalination techniques that exist today are a good general solution, it's just childish to think that people don't realize that rainfall is a much less costly method of obtaining fresh water when available.
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Old 02-17-18, 08:48 AM
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I sat in the desert with my head back and my mouth open, waiting for that rain ... that's where they found my mummified body ....
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Old 02-17-18, 09:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Mobile 155 View Post
It would have been shorter if you just said, no, practicing what I preach isn't necessary.
Who said I don't practice what I preach? What makes you think that?

How many people do you know that believe like you do?
What does 'belief' have to do with it? How does what people believe influence the reality of how things like heat/energy and other natural resources, which are also economic commodities, work? And, before you answer, please considering moving this discussion to P&R before mods get upset.

Have you added any layers of foam? Do you have a roof full of solar panels?
I live in a pretty warm area, so I don't really need heat anyway, but at some point I want to install solar panels to run a chest freezer. I just have to figure out how to achieves the start up voltage needed each time the compressor comes on. If I didn't already have a grid connection, though, and I was building a cottage to live in, I'd invest in a solar panel before paying to have a new electrical connection to the grid installed.

Have you explained to anyone that it is good for them to walk 3 hours to get medical help.
Many people only want sympathy and not advice when they present themselves as in-need. I had a lady come to me one day asking for money for a bus pass with the story that her children needed medical help. I told her politely that there's no way to discern lies from honesty when people ask for money, so I make it a rule not to give money but I suggested that she try to walk them if possible and if they were too sick to walk, their condition probably warranted calling an ambulance.

Have you ever tried to explain to someone that children that are getting cold or too hot simply need to know that it isn't a problem for mammals?
Not only that, I explain that children are conditioned to be more vulnerable to temperature change if they aren't adequately acclimated to the seasons by spending time exercising outdoors regularly.

Just how large is your circle of friends and do any believe like you do?
Sure, many people I talk to understand the value of natural living. We talk about how crazy people are to constantly fight against the natural temperatures with artificial climate control systems. We talk about how organic lifestyles support the body's natural immunities and coping mechanisms, which are our natural defense and healing abilities.

Have you ever gone to live like some of the people I am talking about have Lived? If not how do you know what they need to stay cool.
Because shade is universal. Even the bible mentions shade in the story of Jonah, at the end. I don't say this to preach religion, but as a historical example of ancient knowledge about shade cooling.

If you don't have a roof full of solar panels how do you expect someone in Africa or India living in a house they built by themselves to have them to solar change a stove?
By promoting mass production of such products by popularizing them in middle class markets where people can afford to invest in expanding their production with higher sales. The more affordable, efficient technologies are produced and bought for the global middle class, the more access the global poor will get to them as second-hand and surplus production items.

Do you even know how many watts a electric stove takes? Do you know how many solar panels it takes to make 1000 to 3000 watts? No don't answer, I can guess. You are not a doer it seems.
Yes, electric stoves, ovens, water cookers, microwaves, etc. are intense electrical appliances. A 200W solar panel running for 4 hours on a sunny afternoon could store up 800wh of electricity, which could power a 1500w heating element for about a half hour. Another solution might be to design a pressure-cooker that sits within a solar oven, nested in a hole in the ground for insulation, which could rise to pressure-temperature by focusing several mirrors onto it.

Many people don't think of such solutions because they haven't learned to see the resources around them and use their imaginations creatively to plan innovations and refine their efficiency to something they could apply. The only reason I don't build many of the ideas I come up with is because it would be a waste of money for things I already have, but if you were in the business of assisting poor people with an imperative to spend as little money as possible, you would think of such solutions. Unfortunately, the programs that are funded are usually overfunded in the interest of filtering the money through to businesses that provide expensive solutions and then pat themselves on the back for saving people from their poverty, when they should also consider that they put the people in a state of dependency by diverting them from more efficient/affordable solutions that they could manage more independently of external help. But, again, this keeps getting into P&R territory, so why don't you ever want to discuss things there instead of here?
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Old 02-17-18, 09:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Walter S View Post
Said the man from Florida
First, you don't need to discuss anything personal you may have extrapolated about me. Second, body temperature is 98F for everyone everywhere, not just around the Gulf of Mexico.
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Old 02-17-18, 09:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Walter S View Post
Did you just think of this all on your own?
I read a lot and think critically about what I read, yes.

People (and all life on land including you) have depended on natural processes of evaporation and precipitation for hundreds of millions of years. Do you think the people that promote desalination don't know that?? Or is it possible that in some parts of the world the demand for water outstrips the available supply found thru rainfall?
Yes, I think desalination is a stopgap measure that provides immediate water where reforestation isn't going to happen overnight. What I'm saying is that if you are planning for future water scarcity, you look first at desalination but then you realize desalination boils down to heating water to evaporate it out of the salt and then pumping uphill from sea level. Then, if you think about coastline being sunny, it's logical to use solar power to heat the salt water, but then you have to condense and pump the fresh water uphill to where it is needed. So if you understand all this, you can think about how nature already evaporates water, moves it uphill, and condenses/precipitates it, and channels/stores into rivers, lakes, aquifers, etc. So when you start to understand how the natural water-cycle lifts and protects water from evaporation, you can work on applying that method to places in need of fresh water, instead of just thinking in terms of artificially-powered desalination systems.

While I won't claim desalination techniques that exist today are a good general solution, it's just childish to think that people don't realize that rainfall is a much less costly method of obtaining fresh water when available.
People don't consider how forests protect ground moisture and lower temperatures to attract condensation/precipitation. To allow forests to spread naturally, they have to be allowed to thrive and spread naturally. Every time we cut a corridor through a forested area, it allows moisture to seep out and evaporate away, just as a ditch dug through a swamp allows water to seep out of the ground and flow and evaporate away in the ditch.
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Old 02-17-18, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
First, you don't need to discuss anything personal you may have extrapolated about me. Second, body temperature is 98F for everyone everywhere, not just around the Gulf of Mexico.
It is pretty clear you know very little about the human struggle to live day by day outside of a first world enclave.

I say again, get out there and see the people before you decide that children are as flexible as any other mammal.

A shivering child needs heat far more than they need solar power some day when it becomes affordable to the middle class and then becomes surplus to be sold to the poor. You seem to know very little about human suffering that takes place today.
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Old 02-17-18, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by tandempower View Post
First, you don't need to discuss anything personal you may have extrapolated about me.
You don't need to discuss anything personal about yourself either but you do. If you think reading comments by you that name the place where you live is "extrapolation" I guess I'll take that as a complement It's really just basic reading comprehension

Second, body temperature is 98F for everyone everywhere, not just around the Gulf of Mexico.
Yes, and the sensation of freezing along with the ultimate reality of frostbite and death is what results from the human struggle to maintain that body temperature as ambient temperatures go down.

If people live where it remains below freezing for long periods of time should they bundle up with the right survival gear in their homes and avoid turning on the heat out of a sense of duty? What about fuel for cooking? I guess maybe they just eat granola and dried fruit so as to not require heating?

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Old 02-17-18, 11:44 AM
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It would only take about a hundred years to drastically reduce the population of the world to ten percent or less of its current level without hurting anybody and suddenly the environmental challenges and available natural resource issues are drastically easier to deal with in a transformative way.

That would require that the whole world cooperatively curtail any desire to have more babies except the limited number that make the math work. Outrageous you say? But still maybe more likely than that most of the world will do away with powered personal transport with some decent cargo capacity. Why would they?
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Old 02-17-18, 12:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Mobile 155 View Post
It is pretty clear you know very little about the human struggle to live day by day outside of a first world enclave.
You have experience, but the problem is that you use it to try to trump others instead of engaging in constructive discussion.

I say again, get out there and see the people before you decide that children are as flexible as any other mammal.
I know how obstinate children, and adults, can be. But I also know we have the capacity to submit to reason and overcome obstinance when we exercise the willpower to do so.

A shivering child needs heat far more than they need solar power some day when it becomes affordable to the middle class and then becomes surplus to be sold to the poor. You seem to know very little about human suffering that takes place today.
How is a child going to be shivering if they have sufficient layers of warm clothing on?
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Old 02-17-18, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Walter S View Post
You don't need to discuss anything personal about yourself either but you do. If you think reading comments by you that name the place where you live is "extrapolation" I guess I'll take that as a complement It's really just basic reading comprehension
Yes, and I have an idea of where you live but I don't mention in posts because I consider it disrespectful to broadcast the area where someone lives in a public forum where some lunatic might read it and try to find and stalk you.

Yes, and the sensation of freezing along with the ultimate reality of frostbite and death is what results from the human struggle to maintain that body temperature as ambient temperatures go down.
What's your point? That people need heat? I said in another post that using thick styrofoam insulation and sealing the cracks with spray foam in a single room would allow you to use an electric heater sparingly and still maintain a warm temperature in even the coldest climates. What do you want me to say, that everyone needs to have an entire house heated to 70F so they don't have to wear sweaters inside? What nonsense, not to mention abuse of frostbite-alarmism.

If people live where it remains below freezing for long periods of time should they bundle up with the right survival gear in their homes and avoid turning on the heat out of a sense of duty? What about fuel for cooking? I guess maybe they just eat granola and dried fruit so as to not require heating?
What are you on about. I've never advocated endangering anyone's health. I just see that there are ways of using energy much more efficiently than most people bother with. It's terrible that some people are truly deprived while others complain about conservation as too much of a burden.
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