Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Warren Buffett endorses Hillary

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Portland and anti-carism

Traffic problems? Better buckle that seat belt
Doug Beghtel/The Oregonian

Randal O'Toole (Choking Portland with light rail):

...The last new highway built in Portland opened in 1975. Since then, the city’s population has grown by nearly 60 percent, and the region’s population has more than doubled. Rather than build the transportation infrastructure needed to accommodate these people, Portland has built five light-rail lines and two streetcar lines. As of 2014, these rail lines carried just 8,500 of the city’s 301,000 commuters to work...

Duin closes his article (Congestion has chokehold on the cityquoting Portland State University multimodal transportation researcher Chris Monsere, who says, “A single person in a single vehicle is the least effective transportation system we have.” In other words, it’s not Portland planners’ fault that their plans aren’t working; it’s those stupid commuters, truckers, and other travelers who should be riding bikes and transit instead of driving.

Contrary to Monsere’s subjective judgment, a 23-mph car that goes where I want to go is a lot more effective than a 15-mph light-rail train that doesn’t...

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Donald Trump: Draft dodger

New York Military Academy

Today's New York Times fleshes out the Donald Trump chicken hawk story:

Back in 1968, at the age of 22, Donald J. Trump seemed the picture of health.

He stood 6 feet 2 inches with an athletic build; had played football, tennis and squash; and was taking up golf. His medical history was unblemished, aside from a routine appendectomy when he was 10.

But after he graduated from college in the spring of 1968, making him eligible to be drafted and sent to Vietnam, he received a diagnosis that would change his path: bone spurs in his heels.

The diagnosis resulted in a coveted 1-Y medical deferment that fall, exempting him from military service as the United States was undertaking huge troop deployments to Southeast Asia, inducting about 300,000 men into the military that year.

The deferment was one of five Mr. Trump received during Vietnam. The others were for education...

Thanks to Little Green Footballs.

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Bay Area BikeShare: How many trips at what cost?

Bay Area BikeShare

[Later: Not surprising that there's been no response from the folks at Bay Area BikeShare. Maybe if the Chronicle or the Examiner asked the question...]

I sent this request for information to Bay Area BikeShare yesterday:

The Orange County Register published this column on bike share systems in Southern California.

Can you provide comparable figures for your system? That is, how many trips you provided per year and at what cost?

Also: how much you received in government subsidies, direct or indirect.

Rob Anderson

It's not that I think the program isn't potentially worthwhile or that it shouldn't get some kind of government support. After all, all public transportation programs by definition are supported by the taxpayers. We just need to see the numbers to learn what we're getting for the money to avoid the kind of outcome San Diego had:

During its first year, DecoBike sold 102,641 rides and 697 annual memberships in the city[San Diego] of nearly 1.4 million people, according to KPBS. That translates to an average of about 1,058 rides for each of the 97 stations set up so far---less than three rides per station per day.

If the numbers for Bay Area BikeShare are similar, the program is a failure and there simply isn't enough demand to justify the project.