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The Equality Trust | Working to improve the quality of life in the UK by reducing economic inequality
[See also:
(book) "The Spirit Level"
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Spirit_Level_(book)
The Spirit Level: Why More Equal Societies Almost Always Do Better[1] is a book by Richard G. Wilkinson and Kate Pickett,[2] published in 2009 by Allen Lane. The book is published in the US by Bloomsbury Press (December, 2009) with the new sub-title: Why Greater Equality Makes Societies Stronger.[3] It was then published in a paperback second edition (United Kingdom) in November 2010 by Penguin Books with the subtitle, Why Equality is Better for Everyone.[4]

The book argues that there are "pernicious effects that inequality has on societies: eroding trust, increasing anxiety and illness, (and) encouraging excessive consumption".[5] It claims that for each of eleven different health and social problems: physical health, mental health, drug abuse, education, imprisonment, obesity, social mobility, trust and community life, violence, teenage pregnancies, and child well-being, outcomes are significantly worse in more unequal countries, whether rich or poor.[1] The book contains graphs that are available online.[6]

In 2010, the authors published responses to questions about their analysis on the Equality Trust website.[7] As of September 2012, the book had sold more than 150,000 copies in English.[8] It is available in 23 foreign editions.

"The Spirit Level authors: why society is more unequal than ever"
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/mar/09/society-unequal-the-spirit-level

[follow-up book] "The Inner Level: How More Equal Societies Reduce Stress, Restore Sanity and Improve Everyone’s Wellbeing"
https://www.penguin.co.uk/books/188607/the-inner-level/
Why is the incidence of mental illness in the UK twice that in Germany? Why are Americans three times more likely than the Dutch to develop gambling problems? Why is child well-being so much worse in New Zealand than Japan? As this groundbreaking study demonstrates, the answer to all these hinges on inequality.

In The Spirit Level Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett put inequality at the centre of public debate by showing conclusively that less-equal societies fare worse than more equal ones across everything from education to life expectancy. The Inner Level now explains how inequality affects us individually, how it alters how we think, feel and behave. It sets out the overwhelming evidence that material inequalities have powerful psychological effects: when the gap between rich and poor increases, so does the tendency to define and value ourselves and others in terms of superiority and inferiority. A deep well of data and analysis is drawn upon to empirically show, for example, that low social status is associated with elevated levels of stress, and how rates of anxiety and depression are intimately related to the inequality which makes that status paramount.

Wilkinson and Pickett describe how these responses to hierarchies evolved, and why the impacts of inequality on us are so severe. In doing so, they challenge the conception that humans are innately competitive and self-interested. They undermine, too, the idea that inequality is the product of 'natural' differences in individual ability. This book sheds new light on many of the most urgent problems facing societies today, but it is not just an index of our ills. It demonstrates that societies based on fundamental equalities, sharing and reciprocity generate much higher levels of well-being, and lays out the path towards them.

"Does inequality cause suicide, drug abuse and mental illness?"
https://www.economist.com/books-and-arts/2018/06/14/does-inequality-cause-suicide-drug-abuse-and-mental-illness

"“The Inner Level” seeks to push that debate forward, by linking inequality to a crisis of mental health. This time the authors’ argument focuses on status anxiety: stress related to fears about individuals’ places in social hierarchies. Anxiety declines as incomes rise, they show, but is higher at all levels in more unequal countries—to the extent that the richest 10% of people in high-inequality countries are more socially anxious than all but the bottom 10% in low-inequality countries. Anxiety contributes to a variety of mental-health problems, including depression, narcissism and schizophrenia—rates of which are alarming in the West, the authors say, and rise with inequality.

Manifestations of mental illness, such as self-harm, drug and alcohol abuse and problem gambling, all seem to get worse with income dispersion, too. Such relationships seem to apply within countries as well as between them. Damaging drug use is higher in more unequal neighbourhoods of New York City, in more unequal American states and in more unequal countries. The authors emphasise that it is a person’s relative position rather than absolute income that matters most. A study of 30,000 Britons found that an individual’s place in the income hierarchy predicted the incidence of mental stress more accurately than absolute income did. And in America, relative income is more closely linked to depression than absolute income. It is not enough to lift all boats, their work suggests, if the poshest vessels are always buoyed up more than the humblest.

The fact that relative status matters so much is a result of human beings’ intrinsically social nature, Ms Pickett and Mr Wilkinson argue. Group interaction and co-operation have been an essential component of humanity’s evolutionary success; indeed, the authors say, its social nature helped drive the growth of human brains. Across primates, they write, the size of the neocortex—a part of the brain responsible for higher-level cognitive functions—varies with the typical group size of a species. Living in complex social groups is hard cognitive work. Survival requires an understanding of roles within the social hierarchy, and intuition of what others are thinking. Thus people are necessarily sensitive to their status within groups, and to social developments that threaten it.

Such hierarchies are found in all human societies. But as inequality rises, differences in status become harder to ignore. There is more to be gained or lost by moving from one rung on the ladder to another. And however much some maintain that disparities in pay-cheques do not correspond to differences in human worth, such well-meaning pieties feel hollow when high-rollers earn hundreds or thousands of times what ordinary folk take home. Money cannot buy everything, but it can buy most things. The steeper the income gradient, the less secure everyone becomes, in both their self-respect and their sense of the community’s esteem.

And so people compensate. They take pills, to steel their nerves or dull the pain. Some cut themselves. Some adopt a more submissive posture, avoiding contact with others. Yet such withdrawal can feed on itself, depriving recluses of the social interaction that is important to mental health, undermining relationships and careers and contributing to economic hardship.

Others respond in the opposite way, by behaving more aggressively and egotistically. Studies of narcissistic tendencies showed a steep increase between 1982 and 2006, the authors report; 30% more Americans displayed narcissistic characteristics at the end of the period than at the beginning. Scrutiny of successive American cohorts found a progressive rise in those listing wealth and fame as important goals (above fulfilment and community). Over time, more people cited money as the main motivation for attending college (rather than intellectual enrichment).

Domineering responses to anxiety are associated with loss of empathy and delusions of grandeur. Thus highly successful people often display narcissistic or even psychopathic behaviour. In surveys, the rich are generally less empathetic and more likely to think they deserve special treatment than others. Modern capitalism, the authors suggest, selects for assertiveness, for a lack of sentimentality in business and comfort in sacking underlings, and for showy displays of economic strength. From the top to the bottom of the income spectrum, people use conspicuous consumption and other means of enhancing their image to project status.

The least secure are often the most likely to exaggerate their qualities. For example, countries with lower average life-expectancy tend to do better on measures of self-reported health; 54% of Japanese say they are in good health compared with 80% of Americans, though the Japanese live five years longer on average. Whereas 70% of Swedes consider themselves to be above-average drivers, 90% of Americans do. Such figures cast declamations of America’s greatness, and the politicians who make them, in a new light."

"The Inner Level review – how more equal societies reduce stress and improve wellbeing"
https://www.theguardian.com/books/2018/jun/20/the-inner-level-review ]

[via: https://www.instagram.com/p/BmquJ7Ngvme/ ]
equality  inequality  society  trust  anxiety  well-being  stress  mentalhealth  uk  economics  community  socialmobility  class  education  drugs  drugabuse  health  violence  illness  consumption  hierarchy  horizontality  mentalillness  status  self-harm  gambling  depression  narcissism  schizophrenia  relativity  excess  cooperation  egotism  selfishness  empathy  dunning–krugereffect  greatness  politics  lifeexpectancy  japan  sweden  us  driving  capitalism  latecapitalism  fame  fulfillment  money  motivation  colleges  universities  exceptionalism  assertiveness  aggressiveness  richardwilkinson  katepickett  growth  erichfromm 
august 2018 by robertogreco
Why Viggo Mortensen Is Off the Grid
"And so we drive. Or, rather, he drives. For the next eight hours, for about 250 miles, up to and around Watertown, through the Adirondacks and not quite to Canada—though he does ask if I brought my passport—with periodic stops at diners and waterfalls, lakes and trout ponds, his mother's grave and finally his father's farmhouse. Viggo loves to drive. Sometimes he drives cross-country, just for the hell of it. And yet he has rented a Ford Fusion. "They always do this thing where they try to upgrade me to some fancy fucking car." But he doesn't want a fancy fucking car. At times, he spontaneously pulls over to the side of the road for a good five or ten minutes to finish a train of thought—about life or death or demons or fears or his favorite soccer team in Argentina, San Lorenzo. About the time in the wilds of New Zealand when he skinned, cooked, and ate his own roadkill. ("It was there.") About how much he loves the militant Chomskyite he plays in Captain Fantastic, a father of six who decides to raise his kids in the isolated wilderness of the Pacific Northwest. We could've gone straight to Watertown and stayed there, and we could've gotten there a hell of a lot faster, but Mortensen, his two hands resting gently on the bottom of the steering wheel, doesn't like to drive too fast. He doesn't want to miss a thing."



"Then he did something truly bizarre by Hollywood standards. He had the world by the balls, with his pick of roles—big studio stuff, Clooney kind of stuff, paycheck stuff. He turned all of it down, choosing instead to do what he wanted to do, little of which was lucrative. "I mean, how much fucking money do you need?" he asks. He used some of his Lord of the Rings loot to start a publishing company—yes, a publishing company; it's called Perceval Press, after one of King Arthur's Knights of the Round Table—that would publish poets and other writers who might not otherwise get a book deal, and do so without having them "compromise." He could also afford to spend time on his other interests—writing poetry, taking photographs, painting."

[via: https://submittedforyourperusal.com/2016/05/26/highlights-from-esquires-viggo-mortensen-profile/ ]
viggomortensen  2016  humility  slow  small  driving  life  living  money 
may 2016 by robertogreco
Navigating The Green Book | NYPL Labs
"The Green Book was a travel guide published between 1936 and 1966 that listed hotels, restaurants, bars, gas stations, etc. where black travelers would be welcome. NYPL Labs is in the process of extracting the data from the Green Books themselves and welcomes you to explore its contents in new ways."
greenbooks  greenbook  nypl  archives  publicdomain  1930s  1940s  1950s  1960s  history  us  race  racism  driving  jimcrow  discrimination 
january 2016 by robertogreco
What are all these mysterious Japanese car stickers? | News on Japan
"1 Japan adopted the shamrock symbol to designate handicapped drivers even though the international symbol of a wheelchair is recognized everywhere else in the world.

2 The weird butterfly mark is Japan’s “hard of hearing” symbol. Hard of hearing drivers must display these stickers, which forbids other drivers from cutting off or aggressively passing such cars. This butterfly-mark is an obscure, only-in-Japan symbol and other parts of the world use this easy-to-understand ear mark.

3 Officially called the Koreisha mark (kōrei untensha hyōshiki), the fallen leaf mark must be displayed by drivers over 75 (and strongly recommended for those over 70) to warn other drivers of the impending danger.

UPDATE:
On February 1, 2011, the “Autumn leaf” (Koreisha ) symbol to indicate “aged person at the wheel” was changed to the new, 4-leafed form

(Wikipedia).Japanese_Kourei_mark250
New Koreisha mark
Back in 2009 (The Mainichi / 2009 July 23) that Japanese Police Agency announced that it wanted to come up with a new design to replace the “autumn leaf” symbol which designates an elderly driver. A survey has indicated that only around half of people questioned had an idea of what it meant.

4 Officially called the Shoshinsha mark (shoshin untensha hyōshiki), new drivers must display the green leaf mark for one year after getting their license to warn other drivers that the driver is not very skilled."
symbols  japan  wakaba  wakabamark  driving  koreishamark  koreisha  shoshinshamark  hearing  deaf  deafness  disability  labels  disabilities 
december 2015 by robertogreco
Free Community-based Mapping, Traffic & Navigation App
"Get the best route, every day, with real–time help from other drivers.

Waze is the world's largest community-based traffic and navigation app. Join other drivers in your area who share real-time traffic and road info, saving everyone time and gas money on their daily commute.

WAZE. OUTSMARTING TRAFFIC, TOGETHER."
applications  driving  gps  maps  navigation  traffic  android  ios  iphone  via:everyone 
september 2015 by robertogreco
Smartphones and the Uncertain Future of 'Spatial Thinking' - CityLab
"Your brain is indeed relaxing. In a handful of studies conducted over the last decade in the United States, England, Germany and Japan, researchers have shown that GPS navigation has a generally pernicious effect on the user's ability to remember an environment and reconstruct a route. Toru Ishikawa, a spatial geographer at the University of Tokyo, quantified the difference in a study published earlier this year. Asked to recall various aspects of their surroundings, participants using GPS navigation performed 20 percent worse than their paper-map peers.

As Ishikawa pointed out to me, these findings raise questions beyond urban anthropology. Spatial thinking helps us structure, integrate, and recall ideas. It's less an independent field of study than a foundational skill; a 2006 report from the National Research Council called spatial literacy the "missing link" in the K-12 curriculum at large.

Navigating is among the greatest incubators of that ability. A sophisticated internal map, as a famous study of London cab drivers showed, is tied to greater development in the hippocampus, the brain region responsible for spatial memory. In another study, participants with stronger hippocampus development tended to navigate with complex cognitive maps, while those with less developed spatial memory memorized turn-by-turn directions.

Isn't it ironic: the easier it is for me to get where I'm going, the less I remember how I got there. As a conscious consumer of geographic information, should I be rationing my access to navigation tools—the mental equivalent of taking the stairs instead of taking the elevator?"



"It's too early to toll the bell for human navigation. GPS remains a clumsy accessory for a pedestrian, frustrating on a bicycle, and impossible on a motorcycle. There are indications that regular car commuters, too, may be impervious to the commands of the dashboard gods. "In general, the reason there's traffic is that people take the same way even if there's a different route," says Julie Mossler, head of global communications and creative strategy at Waze. Old highways die hard.

It seems that digital maps haven't rid wayfinding of its personal touch; rather, they are just beginning to properly incorporate it. New products in consumer mapping respond to the hegemonic efficiency of tools from Garmin, TomTom, and others. A handful of services cater solely to joggers. Yahoo Labs is attempting to quantify a nice walk based on crowd-sourced impressions of the city. A Dutch cartographer aims to chart the streets you have or haven't traveled. Every few months, it seems, some entrepreneur is embroiled in controversy over a map service showing neighborhoods that the user should avoid. The worldwide map, like the sprawling territory of the Internet itself, is balkanizing into a set of increasingly specialized "maplications."

The casualty of this gradual fine-tuning, I think, is chance. Routes were once conceived in a febrile mix of logic, accident, and instinct. Today's data-driven apps have mastered logic. They have registered road traffic, train delays, and the other accidents of travel. They have also, by explicitly catering to each of our effable desires, rendered human navigational impulse an eccentricity.

It's still possible, of course, to take a walk or go for a drive; to open your mind and let the city deliver, in Walter Benjamin's phrase, its "hints and instructions." The reverie of wandering, on foot or on wheels, can't be calculated by an algorithm or prescribed by an app.

But technology doesn't go away when you don't use it. From now on, an aimless jaunt is marked not only by openness to the stimuli of the physical world, but by the strain of blocking out their virtual counterparts. Contingent on technophobic self-control, wandering has lost its essential ease."
spatialthinking  cartography  mapping  maps  navigation  2014  via:shannon_mattern  gps  smartphones  orientation  wayfinding  walking  googlemaps  driving  cars  publictransit  memory  henrygrabar 
july 2015 by robertogreco
The Negro Motorist Green Book - Wikipedia
"The Negro Motorist Green Book (at times titled The Negro Traveler's Green Book) was an annual guidebook for African-American drivers, commonly referred to simply as the "Green Book". It was published in the United States from 1936 to 1966, during the Jim Crow era, when discrimination against non-whites was widespread. Although mass automobility was predominantly a white phenomenon because of pervasive racial discrimination and black poverty, the level of car ownership among African-Americans grew as a black middle class emerged. Many blacks took to driving,[1] often to avoid segregation on public transportation.[2] As the writer George Schuyler put it in 1930, "all Negroes who can do so purchase an automobile as soon as possible in order to be free of discomfort, discrimination, segregation and insult."[3] Black Americans employed as salesmen, entertainers, and athletes also found themselves traveling more often for work purposes.[4]

African-American travelers faced a variety of dangers and inconveniences, ranging from white-owned businesses refusing to serve them or repair their vehicles, to being refused accommodation or food by white-owned hotels, to even facing threats of physical violence and forcible expulsion from whites-only "sundown towns". New York mailman and travel agent Victor H. Green published The Negro Motorist Green Book to tackle such problems and "to give the Negro traveler information that will keep him from running into difficulties, embarrassments and to make his trip more enjoyable."[5] From a New York-focused first edition published in 1936, it expanded to cover much of North America including most of the United States and parts of Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean, including Bermuda. The Green Book became "the bible of black travel during Jim Crow",[6] enabling black travelers to find lodgings, businesses, and gas stations that would serve them along the road. Outside the African-American community, however, it was little known. It fell into obscurity after it ceased publication shortly after the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which outlawed the types of racial discrimination that had made the book necessary.[citation needed] Interest in it has revived in the early 21st century in connection with studies of black travel during the Jim Crow era.[citation needed]"
history  us  race  racism  driving  jimcrow  1930s  1940s  1950s  1960s  discrimination  greenbook  greenbooks 
january 2015 by robertogreco
The Rich World's 'Peak Car' Moment: Car-Sharing, Carpooling, Car-Ignoring - Derek Thompson - The Atlantic
"Today's news of explosive car-pooling companies in Europe is a glimpse into a broader trend: Car-driving and car-owning metrics are peaking across the developed world"
europe  us  2012  transportation  peakcar  driving  cars 
october 2012 by robertogreco
Red-light cameras: Who knew L.A.'s red-light camera fines were 'voluntary'? - latimes.com
"City officials this week spotlighted a surprising revelation involving red-light camera tickets: Authorities cannot force violators who simply don't respond to pay them. For a variety of reasons, including the way the law was written, Los Angeles officials say the fines for ticketed motorists are essentially "voluntary" and there are virtually no tangible consequences for those who refuse to pay.

The disclosure comes as the city is considering whether to drop the controversial photo enforcement program, with the City Council scheduled to vote on the matter Wednesday. Even if the program is shut down, it will be little consolation to the tens of thousands like Brickman who already paid fines."
losangeles  law  driving  fines  redlightcameras  2011 
july 2011 by robertogreco
Side View Mirror Project
"Hello. My name is Erik Dahl and the “Side View Mirror Project” is a little something I’ve been working on my free time. I have a point-and-shoot camera (Panasonic DMC-LX2) with me at all times, and I started taking pictures of drivers in their side view mirrors while stopped at stop lights. <br />
<br />
What is captured here is a record of these tiny portals into other drivers’ worlds. <br />
<br />
This is an ongoing project. I started actively taking these pictures in 2008."
art  culture  society  photography  mirrors  sideviewmirrorproject  driving  cars  carculture  traffic  2008 
april 2011 by robertogreco
Streetsblog.net » Is Driving on the Decline in the Pacific Northwest?
"Driving on the Decline in the Pacific Northwest? Orphan Road offers a set of data showing that traffic volumes throughout the Northwest are declining, at least according to a local news source. Data show a reduction in traffic in Seattle and Portland, and statewide in Washington and Oregon. Earlier reports showed a decline in metro Seattle, but this is the first news we’ve seen pointing to a regional trend. And Orphan Road adds that in at least one case the decline precedes the 2008 recession or the rise in gas prices. Sightline Daily, which first reported the data, said it’s important that traffic engineers take note. “It may not make sense anymore — and might, in fact, be financially risky — for transportation planners to assume that demand for car travel will rise in the future the way it did in the 1950s.”"
cars  transportation  pacificnorthwest  cascadia  trends  driving  2011  seattle  portland  oregon  washingtonstate 
march 2011 by robertogreco
Online, Anonymity Breeds Contempt - NYTimes.com
"Even in the 4th century B.C., Plato touched upon the subject of anonymity & morality in his parable of the ring of Gyges.

That mythical ring gave its owner the power of invisibility, & Plato observed that even a habitually just man who possessed such a ring would become a thief, knowing that he couldn’t be caught. Morality, Plato argues, comes from full disclosure; without accountability for our actions we would all behave unjustly…

Psychological research has proven again & again that anonymity increases unethical behavior. Road rage bubbles up in the relative anonymity of one’s car. & in the online world, which can offer total anonymity, the effect is even more pronounced…There’s even a term for it: the online disinhibition effect.

At Facebook…approach is to try to replicate real-world social norms by emphasizing the human qualities of conversation. People’s faces, real names & brief bios are placed next to their public comments, to establish a baseline of responsibility."
community  trolls  internet  anonymity  commenting  facebook  trolling  morality  onlinedisinhibition  2010  ethics  human  humannature  cars  driving  plato  gyges  parables  ringofgyges  disclosure  accountability  behavior  etiquette  social  interaction  online  web  socialnorms  conversation  classideas  cv  responsibility  toshare  todiscuss 
december 2010 by robertogreco
Cars (again) - Charlie's Diary
"By around 2050, I'm fairly sure that the human-driven automobile will be a specialised race-track toy for gear-heads, much as horse-drawn carriages in the developed world are a quaint hobby or a deliberate affectation demanded by certain cultural groups (I'm thinking Amish here). Privately owned cars will exist, but will function more like a chauffeur-driven limo. They won't even need to be parked by your house; whistle and it'll come when you need it. Poor folks won't have their own car, they'll just have fractional reserve part-ownership of a vehicle — after all, even at peak rush hour, 95% of the UK vehicle fleet is parked up; we don't need one car per person, we just need available wheels whenever we want to go somewhere. By 2110, I figure driving a manually-controlled car around will be looked on the way we'd look on someone carrying a sword in public; at best it's a weird and archaic affectation, and at worst — call the police!"
cars  future  travel  robots  technology  cities  trains  transportation  transit  driving  2050  2010  charliestross  predictions 
december 2010 by robertogreco
Blaise Agüera y Arcas, the Mind Behind Bing Maps | Creating - WSJ.com
"applied a coat of blackboard paint to the wall himself because he dislikes odor of whiteboard marker…manages about 60 people…most stimulating meetings…are "jam sessions," in which people riff on each others' ideas…Prototypes are crucial…most productive moments often occur outside office, w/out distraction of meetings. After he has dinner & puts children to bed…he & wife, neuroscientist at UW, often sit side-by-side working on laptops late into night…Though…greater management responsibilities over years…still considers it vital to find time to develop projects on his own. "You see people who evolved in this way, & sometimes it looks like their brains died"…finds driving a car "deadening," so he takes a bus to work from his home, reading or working on his laptop…When young…dismantled things both animal & inanimate, from cameras to guinea pigs, so that he could see how they worked"
blaiseagüerayarcas  meetings  distraction  microsoft  bing  maps  mapping  nightowls  management  administration  leadership  brainstorming  iteration  prototyping  ommuting  cv  buses  cars  driving  howthingswork  detachment  attention  work  howwework  creativity  invention 
november 2010 by robertogreco
Is the Digital Age Changing Our Desire to Drive? » INFRASTRUCTURIST
"The citation is an article from Advertising Age about the diminished importance of the automobile in the digital age. The piece points out that in 1995 people age 21 to 30 accounted for roughly 21 percent of automobile-miles driven in the United States. By 2001 that figure had dipped to 18 percent, and in 2009 it had fallen below 14 percent. All this while the proportion of people in this age group actually increased.<br />
<br />
The reason for this change, according to some experts, is that technology is doing for today’s generation what the car did for previous ones—namely, providing a sense of freedom. For one thing, the Internet has made telecommuting more common."
transportation  transit  urbanism  housing  driving  demographics  workflow  infrastructure  cars  technology  trends  mobility  telecommuting 
november 2010 by robertogreco
The Ruleless Road « Snarkmarket
"In the long list of books I’ll never write, there’s one that’s about a the­ory of risk. The the­ory is that there’s a thresh­old of risk aver­sion beyond which our attempts to extin­guish risk actu­ally exac­er­bate it. It would be filled with the case stud­ies you might expect — things like the overuse of antibi­otics and how a finan­cial insur­ance prod­uct short-circuited the econ­omy. But the open­ing anec­dote would be about roads. And I’d basi­cally copy and paste it from from this Decem­ber ’04 Wired story: …"
comments  mattthompson  snarkmarket  risk  behavior  roads  driving  antibiotics  insurance  finance  riskaversion  helicopterparents  handmoderman  complexity  simplicity  helicopterparenting 
august 2010 by robertogreco
Economic View - Why Free Parking Comes at a Price - NYTimes.com
"In his book, Professor Shoup estimated that the value of the free-parking subsidy to cars was at least $127 billion in 2002, and possibly much more.<br />
<br />
PERHAPS most important, if we’re going to wean ourselves away from excess use of fossil fuels, we need to remove current subsidies to energy-unfriendly ways of life. Imposing a cap-and-trade system or a direct carbon tax doesn’t seem politically acceptable right now. But we can start on alternative paths that may take us far.<br />
<br />
Imposing higher fees for parking may make further changes more palatable by helping to promote higher residential density and support for mass transit.<br />
<br />
As Professor Shoup puts it: “Who pays for free parking? Everyone but the motorist.”"
parking  cities  urban  transport  economics  environment  transportation  density  costs  subsidies  cars  driving  us  tylercowen 
august 2010 by robertogreco
Commuting : The Frontal Cortex
"David Brooks, summarizing the current state of happiness research: "The daily activity most injurious to happiness is commuting. According to one study, being married produces a psychic gain equivalent to more than $100,000 a year." In other words, the best way to make yourself happy is to have a short commute and get married. I'm afraid science can't tell us very much about marriage so let's talk about commuting. A few years ago, the Swiss economists Bruno Frey and Alois Stutzer announced the discovery of a new human foible, which they called "the commuters paradox". They found that, when people are choosing where to live, they consistently underestimate the pain of a long commute. This leads people to mistakenly believe that the big house in the exurbs will make them happier, even though it might force them to drive an additional hour to work."
commuting  happiness  davidbrooks  housing  urbanplanning  suburbia  marriage  neuroscience  jonahlehrer  behavior  cars  driving  psychology  estimation  planning  urban  urbanism  transportation  traffic  suburbs  lifestyle  living  satisfaction 
april 2010 by robertogreco
Clive Thompson to Texters: Park the Car, Take the Bus | Magazine
"We should change our focus to the other side of the equation & curtail not the texting but the driving. This may sound a bit facetious, but I’m serious. When we worry about driving & texting, we assume that the most important thing the person is doing is piloting the car. But what if the most important thing they’re doing is texting? How do we free them up so they can text without needing to worry about driving?
texting  driving  safety  transportation  us  japan  europe  future  focus  multitasking  clivethompson 
february 2010 by robertogreco
Worldchanging: Bright Green: New Report: U.S. Road Funding From Non-Road Users Doubled in 25 Years
"The myth that U.S. roads "pay for themselves" thanks to user fees is a subject that's likely familiar to many Streetsblog readers -- but just how much of the nation's highway funding is provided by charging drivers?
roads  funding  transportation  us  highways  freeways  taxes  government  subsidies  cars  driving 
november 2009 by robertogreco
Study claims cyclists at fault in only 10 percent of crashes
"...While there is a public perception that cyclists are usually the cause of accidents between cars and bikes, an analysis of Toronto police collision reports shows otherwise: The most common type of crash in this study involved a motorist entering an intersection and either failing to stop properly or proceeding before it was safe to do so. The second most common crash type involved a motorist overtaking unsafely. The third involved a motorist opening a door onto an oncoming cyclist. The study concluded that cyclists are the cause of less than 10 per cent of bike-car accidents in this study.
bikes  safety  cars  driving  statistics 
september 2009 by robertogreco
Driven to Distraction - In 2003, U.S. Withheld Data Showing Cellphone Driving Risks - Series - NYTimes.com
"That letter said that hands-free headsets did not eliminate the serious accident risk. The reason: a cellphone conversation itself, not just holding the phone, takes drivers’ focus off the road, studies showed.
multitasking  psychology  distraction  attention  driving  texting  mobile  phones  cognition  publichealth  safety 
july 2009 by robertogreco
Archinect : Features : CONSTELLATIONS OF LOS ANGELES
"For Postopolis! LA, I would like to do a Los Angeles 'drive by,' as we call them, here, in a car...

Let us say and imagine, in Los Angeles, urban scale "planned points of interests" are indeed constellations. They are places in this vast metropolis. They are formed by the grid, by the politicians and their supporters, developers, engineers, and, as far as the buildings go, the architects.

Separated by mere 15 miles and sometimes as close as the next lane, urban core of Los Angeles is indeed 'the house of everything.' All the variables contrasted and occupied. The grid goes for hundreds of sq. miles. These special constellations let us to assume, experience, imagine and expect while driving. They are vortices of our stories in an horoscopic sense. These are the lines of our reality and the reasons of our act.

Your next friendly gathering, cultural outing or errand, you drive by these constellations... There are thousands of them..."
architecture  art  california  losangeles  postopolis  planning  archinect  urbanism  orhanayyuce  driving  situationist 
april 2009 by robertogreco
Today's Office - Jan Chipchase - Future Perfect
"In some cities you learn how to drive; in LA you learn how to drive by."
losangeles  socal  janchipchase  driving 
march 2009 by robertogreco
Jan Chipchase - Future Perfect: Tokyo Driving School
"If you've spent time in a large organisation these past few years you've probably brushed up against that early 21th century notion of 'life long learning' - that it's never too late to re skill, retool, learn something new. We are undergoing a fundamental change in the way we relate to objects and the way (connected) objects relate to us. 'Life long learning' is no longer about you in relation to what you can offer to achieve you potential - but rather the systems' ability to learn about you over the course of it, and your lifetime.
learning  training  education  driving  lifelonglearning  humanpotential  assessment  testing  organizations 
january 2009 by robertogreco
Cell Phones More Distracting Than Chatty Passengers -- Cell Phone -- InformationWeek
"A simulator presenting a 24-mile multilane highway complete with on- and off-ramps, overpasses, and two-lane traffic was utilized in the research. "
mobile  phones  safety  driving  attention 
december 2008 by robertogreco
The Argentine Post: 15 Rules For Stress-Free Driving In Argentina
"Argentines have a remarkably interesting capacity to curse and yell without actually taking themselves too seriously. The angry yelling seems to be fleeting and does not - at least in many cases - seem to represent a deep, lingering anger. The same trait seems to be common in Italy which, of course, supplied much of Argentina's immigration. My experience is that Argentines curse and yell in traffic in part just for show. In part, they enjoy it. The verbal onslaughts are almost part of of an odd cultural ritual."
argentina  buenosaires  driving  traffic  culture  society  swearing  language 
august 2008 by robertogreco
iPhone Apps We Like: Dynolicious Car Performance Meter [more here: http://blog.wired.com/cars/2008/07/think-youre-fas.html]
"Dynolicious is an all-purpose automotive performance meter, utilizing the built-in accelerometer in the iPhone and iPod touch to record your driving characteristics...can record 0-60 times within .08 of a second, accurately estimate your current speed an
personalinformatics  iphone  applications  cars  driving  ios 
july 2008 by robertogreco
GoLoco
"GoLoco is a service that helps people and communities create their own personal public transportation network. Your cars, your friends, your trips, your expenses -- GoLoco puts them all together for a seamless way to share travel and expenses."
travel  transportation  community  carpool  commuting  ridesharing  sustainability  driving  environment  zipcar  carpooling 
july 2008 by robertogreco
Marginal Revolution: Should the driving rules favor cars or bikers?
Tyler Cowen is way off base here, but there are some commenters who share good insights. See also links to Megan McArdle (2), Will Wilkinson, and Arnold Kling.
bikes  economics  incentives  traffic  cars  driving  transportation  tylercowen 
july 2008 by robertogreco
Distracting Miss Daisy: Why stop signs and speed limits endanger Americans
"The more you look for signs, for police, and at your speedometer, the less attentive you will be to traffic conditions. The limits on attention are much more severe than most people imagine. And it takes only a momentary lapse, at the wrong time, to caus
culture  government  psychology  traffic  us  uk  flow  attention  driving  unintendedconsequences  cars  travel  signs  signage  safety 
june 2008 by robertogreco

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