Let's look at NYC traffic. Is it a nightmare? No question about it. Does taking away traffic lanes to accommodate a few bikers (who flaunt traffic regulations) solve the problem? No, it exacerbates it. Traffic Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan must have pictures of Mr. Bloomberg in a lace bustier and fishnet stockings to get away with what she's done to this city. Nine out of ten New Yorkers oppose these dumb-ass bike lanes, yet they continue to proliferate. Do I criticize without offering solutions? No, and here they are: 1) Make public transit what it should be in the world's greatest city so more people will leave their cars at home. 2) Go to permanent odd/even license plate access to enter the city...inconvenient but traffic is instantly halved. 3) Rigorously enforce existing laws against double parked cars that choke our streets. 4) Set up taxi stands on corners to get cruising cabs off the streets.
The Mayor's latest brainstorm (yes, Janet surely has the negatives of those pictures) is to equip 20% of all new parking spaces created in the city with chargers for battery powered cars. Sounds wonderful for the environment but there are flaws. First of all very few electric cars exist compared to gas-powered ones. Do you know how hard it is already to find affordable parking in New York? Will these spaces remain empty while the rest of us circle the block, wasting gas and increasing air pollution, looking for a "non-electric:" space? Will gas-powered cars be fined for parking in these spots as we know that in desperation they will? If so, then it's really about revenue enhancement, not environmental protection.
Then we have the big health initiative...no more 16 oz. sodas, fatso. Again, the Mayor is attempting to take on a real problem here, obesity, which contributes to many dangerous health conditions and causes medical care costs to skyrocket. Heard a story about a woman who died overweight and riddled with disease after a lifetime of consuming 8-10 liters (that's liters!) of Coke a day. Her family is now suing Coca Cola for making an addictive drink. Good luck with that. Again, good intent but a faulty solution. My point is that people addicted to these drinks are not going to stop consuming them. They will just buy two smaller drinks. No health improvement and now, more cans/cups to recycle. Who knows, maybe this too is about increased city revenue through sales taxes.
The Mayor has done some good things like closing Times Square to traffic so money spending tourists can take pictures to their heart's content. Also, his recent proposal to ban Styrofoam cups and containers makes good sense to me. But the bike lanes and soda restrictions...swing and a miss.
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