Why Diesels are Big in Europe But Not Here

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Why Diesels are Big in Europe But Not Here

Postby xbacksideslider » Wed Mar 04, 2015 11:19 am

http://ericpetersautos.com/2015/03/03/w ... expensive/

Cars themselves and the fuel they burn - regs make both too expensive here.
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Re: Why Diesels are Big in Europe But Not Here

Postby SonicVenum » Wed Mar 04, 2015 3:36 pm

Pretty interesting article. I know you posted something from that site before, but it was a little more out there, if I remember correctly. It's a shame some things that shouldn't be as regulated are regulated heavily, and other things the could really use regulation go with little or none. It makes perfect sense to have diesels be used more commonly. Watching Top Gear regularly will teach you just how many models of vehicles in Europe have a diesel option. Most, if not all, of the regular vehicles they mention on that show seem to have a diesel option. My company uses nothing but diesel trucks, so we're doing our part, I guess. :dance:
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Re: Why Diesels are Big in Europe But Not Here

Postby xbacksideslider » Wed Mar 11, 2015 3:18 pm

Yeah, Eric Peters is a libertarian so his ideas can be too fresh, or not encountered before.

IMO, regulation is almost always the result of politicians sticking their fingers into someone else's pie. They are always selling something, selling protection from regulation, or selling benefits by regulation. The existing companies buy protection from regulations by stopping/limiting the effect of regulation or they buy protection from competitors by way of discriminatory regulations.

In almost every case of some problem that politicians want to regulate, the courts could do it with far less corruption. For example, if some body is polluting, sue them instead of regulating them. If some one builds an unsafe car, sue them for that too. And so on. We don't need an army of regulators and an army of lobbyists facing off over proposed regs, just let the courts do their job.
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Re: Why Diesels are Big in Europe But Not Here

Postby SonicVenum » Wed Mar 11, 2015 4:39 pm

I ended up finding the previous post I mentioned. It was the one where Google dropped him for some reason, and he had a rant about that, and it continued into the comments.

The problem with a lot of our regulations today is the corruption involved in them. If we had a pristine system where regulations where only created for the benefit of the greatest number of citizens with no involvement of money, we'd be better off. For instance, laws/regulations against monopolies and oligopolies are good, but only when they are enforced. Trade regulations limiting a company's ability to have bases in the US, reap profits from US consumers, but move manufacturing abroad... those would be good. It's just so sad what money can do. How many hundreds of millions or billions of dollars does one person need? A long time ago, I read something about why the greater Los Angeles area had such poor public transportation for a metropolitan area. The answer: The Firestone Family. Good public transportation = lower tire sales. They had the money to make it happen. That might just be an urban legend, but it's believable.
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Re: Why Diesels are Big in Europe But Not Here

Postby jhwalker » Thu Mar 12, 2015 2:08 pm

"
The answer: The Firestone Family. Good public transportation = lower tire sales. They had the money to make it happen. That might just be an urban legend, but it's believable."

I had never heard this one, so I had to google a little...
http://articles.latimes.com/2003/mar/23/local/me-then23

Interesting article, 2003. Highlights...

The automobile became Angelenos' preferred mode of transportation so quickly and completely that, for decades, conspiracy theorists have believed that the auto, oil and tire companies secretly did in the smokeless trolleys to promote the need for -- and sales of -- their products. The theory was part of a 1988 big-screen comedy about an animated actor named Roger who is charged with a murder he didn't commit. As he and a detective work to clear his name, they uncover a conspiracy to wreck Southern California's public transit system.

"Who Framed Roger Rabbit" became to traffic planning what "Chinatown" was to Los Angeles water politics -- but with more laughs.

The giant corporations with a stake in cars and buses were prosecuted half a century ago by the federal government for conspiring to deep-six the region's streetcars. The consortium of General Motors, Standard Oil, Firestone Tire & Rubber, Phillips Petroleum and Mack Truck Manufacturing Co., in turn, blamed the Red and Yellow cars' demise on Angelenos' love of their automobiles, arguing that residents had grown increasingly irate over the streetcars' overcrowding, high fares, aging equipment, accidents and inadequate routes into the new suburban reaches of Los Angeles.

Although it's tempting to believe that evil forces must have been to blame, most historians agree that GM and the other mega-companies only helped to speed the end of the railway, which already was deep into red ink. There were mixed court verdicts, with fines levied that were considered a drop in the bucket.

Nowadays, in the age of choked freeways, the nostalgic mystique of the old Red and Yellow trolleys remains and the old myths die hard, if at all.
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Re: Why Diesels are Big in Europe But Not Here

Postby SonicVenum » Thu Mar 12, 2015 3:02 pm

Hmmm, as the jaded conspiracy theorist that I am, the article did nothing to dispel my previously held notions. It makes me think there's something to it. How is it other big cities like New York and Chicago could have functioning and popular rail systems, but not LA? The technology was there. The weather out here makes it easier to travel via public transport without dealing with snow, hail, etc. Wouldn't a big factor in the use of public transport be cost? Did LA just have a higher level of median income than the other cities had, thus making cars a more affordable option? I'm smelling collusion, and bribery. :snooty:
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Re: Why Diesels are Big in Europe But Not Here

Postby jhwalker » Thu Mar 12, 2015 6:50 pm

SonicVenum wrote:Hmmm, as the jaded conspiracy theorist that I am, the article did nothing to dispel my previously held notions. It makes me think there's something to it. How is it other big cities like New York and Chicago could have functioning and popular rail systems, but not LA? The technology was there. The weather out here makes it easier to travel via public transport without dealing with snow, hail, etc. Wouldn't a big factor in the use of public transport be cost? Did LA just have a higher level of median income than the other cities had, thus making cars a more affordable option? I'm smelling collusion, and bribery. :snooty:


:lol: I think an analysis of the issues that are faced here with underground drilling (mucho gas), plus the relative level of seismic activity, and the incredible flow away from central La could be part of it. :whistle:
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Re: Why Diesels are Big in Europe But Not Here

Postby SonicVenum » Fri Mar 13, 2015 2:45 pm

Hmmm, I don't know if I buy that. Metro has several lines running now (finally), connecting various parts of the Southland. I still think more could have been done, and it could have been done sooner.
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Re: Why Diesels are Big in Europe But Not Here

Postby xbacksideslider » Fri Mar 13, 2015 3:57 pm

No doubt in my mind that if the trolley system was in debt and suffering from falling ridership due to the trendy popularity, fad, of automobile ownership and the fact that LA, being a newer city was not nearly as dense as New York or Chicago or other earlier developed cities, then the natural competitors - GM, Firestone, etc., would buy up the debt of the trolley system in order to be able to control it.

If the politicians can't/won't sell to you regulation of the competition that strangles that competition, then you have to go to that competition, hat in hand, and buy them out. Can't beat 'em? Then join 'em. Or, if that competition won't sell, then buy their debt and do a hostile takeover.

Further, new debt to re-finance or to build out improvements in the trolley system would be hard to come by at low rates during a time of the ascendency of the automobile. Also, perhaps permits to expand the trolley system were politicized?

The individualistic door to door aspect of the automobile, as opposed to each and every form of common, communalistic, mass transit, is the automobile's edge; so it was then, so it is now. It's not just the fact that you have to walk from the pick up or drop off point, it is also the time aspect; that walk, at each end, can add perhaps an hour to your trip.

One of the aspects of modernity is that each individual's time is worth more than it was in generations past and that "bottom up" organic systems work better than "top down" planning.

Automobiles were to railroads and trolleys as the internet is to newpapers and TV networks; they democratized the flow of transport. Automobiles disperse transportation power, just as the internet disperses information power, democratizing the flow of information.

Nah, question the motives of those who criticize the automobile and who pump mass transit; they're corrupt, statist, top down, controllers.
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Re: Why Diesels are Big in Europe But Not Here

Postby Tetge » Fri Mar 13, 2015 4:35 pm

xbacksideslider wrote:..........popularity, fad, of automobile ownership and the fact that LA, being a newer city was not nearly as dense as New York or Chicago or other earlier developed cities................Nah, question the motives of those who criticize the automobile and who pump mass transit; they're corrupt, statist, top down, controllers........


Many would agree with you about cities that grew after the advent of the automobile, such as Los Angeles, as such grew differently than historically dense older, pedestrian, or horse drawn, era cities. The growth patterns of cities like LA and Houston, TX., and other cities that grew up in the post automobile era are not mass transit friendly. Subdivisions, for instance, were often located where the land was inexpensive as proximity to the center of the city which traditionally housed the industry and government was no longer required. In the automotive city, time was, and still is, more important than distance, and as time went by the industry and services moved out of the downtown area as well to better serve the dispersed population and malls were born. Of course, San Francisco, with no real additional land to spread out into, and being ruled by commies, has all sorts of crazy public transportation, including cable cars that take up a lot of room on the streets and buses and Bart. And the residents hate automobiles, which is almost a good thing since there is a chronic parking problem as well. But this just further proves how wrong Frisco is about everything.
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