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Living Car Free Do you live car free or car light? Do you prefer to use alternative transportation (bicycles, walking, other human-powered or public transportation) for everyday activities whenever possible? Discuss your lifestyle here.

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Old 01-18-07, 07:29 AM   #1
SwollenYak
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Hybrid Cars Cause Smug

Anyone catch South Park last night?

Stan persuades all the citizens of South Park to buy hybrid cars. A disaster of epic proportions threatens the town and Stan is to blame -- just as everyone starts to feel really good about what they’re doing to help save the earth, scientists discover a stormy, dark mass accumulating over the town. The cloud is caused by their own smugness and it threatens to destroy South Park (the second most smugiest city) and San Francisco (the smugiest)... hilarity ensues.
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Old 01-18-07, 07:55 AM   #2
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I watched and thought it was hilarious. That show has the best social commentary of any show on television. Reminds us that we should do the right thing without preaching about how we are better than everyone else for doing so.
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Old 01-18-07, 08:51 AM   #3
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Every time I'm stopped at a light next to one of those things, I burst into song.

(To the tune of the Ken-L-Ration jingle from the 70s...)

My ride's greener than your ride,
My ride's greener than yours...
My ride's greener 'cause it's it goes carbon-free,
My ride's greener than yours.

Amazing how that deflates smugness.

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Old 01-18-07, 09:31 AM   #4
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Driving a hybrid that gets 50 MPG instead of "only" 40 MPG for the same size class of car is like shooting Mother Earth in the head with 20% fewer machine-gun bullets.
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Old 01-18-07, 11:58 AM   #5
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Driving a hybrid that gets 50 MPG instead of "only" 40 MPG for the same size class of car is like shooting Mother Earth in the head with 20% fewer machine-gun bullets.
Don't forget the tons of spent batteries an 10yr old valueless cars to dump in the wound.
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Old 01-18-07, 02:53 PM   #6
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It's time to unplug from the tin machine!!!

http://www.comedycentral.com/motherl...&is_large=true
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Old 01-18-07, 02:58 PM   #7
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I saw that episode last year sometime and thought it was great.

In fact, here's a summary for those who missed it.
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Old 01-18-07, 03:38 PM   #8
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My landlord is a lawyer for a large company, drives a Prius, and owns a fair bit of property, so I assume he has lots of money. He also seems to be too cheap to put efficient heaters in our building and non-drafty windows to reduce our building's gas use and carbon emissions.

He and others with hybrid cars give me the impression that Priuses are sort of a status symbol (kind of like an Escalade) and "environmentalism for show". One couple I knew (both retired) rarely had two cars out of the driveway at once and had a Prius and a minivan. They seemed to prefer driving the minivan rather than the Prius, sometimes even when there was only one person going.
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Old 01-18-07, 07:03 PM   #9
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Damn sneaky those hybrid cars are, I got caught off guard a couple of times by them being so quiet. They should be as noisy as those old Griffon vans, so they can be heard a couple blocks away.
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Old 01-18-07, 08:30 PM   #10
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An early 90's Geo Metro with the 1.0 liter 3 cylinder engine got 58 mpg and it only costed $7000 brand new, not to mention it was far easier to maintain than a Prius and didn't come with expensive hazardous batteries. But then again a smugger-than-thou ultraliberal Sanfranciscan hippie wouldn't be seen driving one of those....
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Old 01-18-07, 09:17 PM   #11
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An early 90's Geo Metro with the 1.0 liter 3 cylinder engine got 58 mpg and it only costed $7000 brand new, not to mention it was far easier to maintain than a Prius and didn't come with expensive hazardous batteries. But then again a smugger-than-thou ultraliberal Sanfranciscan hippie wouldn't be seen driving one of those....
I live in San Francisco and I've never seen a hippie driving a Prius. That'd be weird. Hippies drive old VW vans, man.
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Old 01-18-07, 10:39 PM   #12
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Went to see the comic Jeff Dunham a while back and he spent quite a bit of time making jokes about his Prius - most gay-related. He claims to own a Prius and an original Hummer. Quite the environmentalist that guy
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Old 01-19-07, 09:19 AM   #13
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I think an environmentally friendly car is an oxymoron. Still, a Geo Metro is better than a Hummer. Then again if everyone drove Hummers the critical mass of oil shortage/pollution/global warming would be reached much sooner and then there might be real sustainable Earth friendly alternatives put into action.

I certainly don't know how it will all play out. So I just ride my bike with a smile on my face and avoid conspicuous consumption and try not to judge so much.
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Old 01-19-07, 11:45 AM   #14
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It seems to me that your driving style would make more of an impact than what you drive. The guy who owns a pickup with a V8 but only drives 3000 km per year hurts the environment less than the guy who owns an economy car but drives 30,000 kms. Also things like how hard you drive matter, an economy car beign driven at full throttle would use as much gas and spew as much toxins as a V8 being driven very lightly. It's far more complicated than just what you drive.
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Old 01-19-07, 11:59 AM   #15
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When it comes to toxic pollution and peak oil concerns, a hybid/metro/prius is a better choice than a gas guzzler. Using less oil counts in these areas.

However, when it comes to warming/carbon emissions, it makes little difference what kind of car you drive. Whether the carbon is emitted slowly (everybody switches to hybrids) or it's emitted quickly (everybody switches to Hummers), it makes no difference. Either way, eventually the carbon is emitted, and the atmosphere changes, and the planet fries.

On balance, I think it's slightly better if people switch to efficient cars like metros and hybrids. Of course it would be much better if they switched to zeo-emission alternatives like bikes.
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Old 01-19-07, 01:55 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Spaceman Spiff
Also things like how hard you drive matter, an economy car beign driven at full throttle would use as much gas and spew as much toxins as a V8 being driven very lightly. It's far more complicated than just what you drive.
I don't buy it - simply because an aggresive driver is going to drive the same way no matter what they're in. They're still much better off in the smaller, more fuel-efficient car.
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Old 01-19-07, 04:21 PM   #17
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That's exactly my point, they need to abandon their agressive driving attitude. A lead-footed driver in a hybrid is causing more environmental damage than a reasonable driver in a V8 pickup.
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Old 01-19-07, 06:52 PM   #18
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That's exactly my point, they need to abandon their agressive driving attitude. A lead-footed driver in a hybrid is causing more environmental damage than a reasonable driver in a V8 pickup.
1) no, they're not.... gas mileage would still be much better, and emissions would be lower

2) you continue to use a sideways argument to prove whatever your point is. To me, it seems like you're trying to argue that good gas mileage cars aren't needed.

In my experience, the people complaining about fast drivers are usually incompetent, slow, and holding everyone up. Sure, you save .00001 mL of fuel by accelerating really slowly from that light. What about the fuel wasted by the four cars who had to sit idling at the light. They would have made it through had the slow person moved their ass.
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Old 01-19-07, 07:07 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by JeffS
1
2) you continue to use a sideways argument to prove whatever your point is. To me, it seems like you're trying to argue that good gas mileage cars aren't needed.
There is always the hope that these types of cars will evolve to the point where they introduce the "derailleur drive". I vote for hybrid right now and hope the smug trend continues.
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Old 01-19-07, 08:00 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by JeffS

In my experience, the people complaining about fast drivers are usually incompetent, slow, and holding everyone up. Sure, you save .00001 mL of fuel by accelerating really slowly from that light. What about the fuel wasted by the four cars who had to sit idling at the light. They would have made it through had the slow person moved their ass.

Hey, you might be that person who's always trying to read the label on my rear blinkie .
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Old 01-19-07, 09:08 PM   #21
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Don't forget the tons of spent batteries an 10yr old valueless cars to dump in the wound.
If I had a dollar for every time I heard this one...

I'd have a few bucks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffS
In my experience, the people complaining about fast drivers are usually incompetent, slow, and holding everyone up. Sure, you save .00001 mL of fuel by accelerating really slowly from that light. What about the fuel wasted by the four cars who had to sit idling at the light. They would have made it through had the slow person moved their ass.
Eh, it's not acceleration that results in crappy mileage, it's higher cruising speeds.

So, anyhoo... accelerating quickly may save .000001 mL, but driving at 50mph compared to 80mph will increase mileage by ~30-70%. And will save a proportional amount of cash. Of course, the worse your mileage, the more money you can save, but I suppose the people that can afford to buy an F-350, lift it, and drive around SoCal freeways can afford to pay out the nose for gas too!

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Old 01-19-07, 10:24 PM   #22
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I admit I can forsee this turning into a BBS war, but maybe we should let some of these Hybrid guys know that their cars still won't stop global warming

Hybrid Car Forums
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Old 01-21-07, 12:22 PM   #23
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1) no, they're not.... gas mileage would still be much better, and emissions would be lower
Oh, so you're a mechanic? An economy car with a 2.0 liter engine being driven at full throttle at 6000 rpm would use fuel at the same rate as a 6.0 liter V8 running at 2000 rpm, and most V8 engines are smaller than 6 liters.

And no one is advocating that all people should drive like old grandmas, just that people should drive normally, not with a lead foot, which usually doesn't result in getting to your destination any faster.
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Old 01-21-07, 12:39 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffS
1) no, they're not.... gas mileage would still be much better, and emissions would be lower
2) you continue to use a sideways argument to prove whatever your point is. To me, it seems like you're trying to argue that good gas mileage cars aren't needed.
In my experience, the people complaining about fast drivers are usually incompetent, slow, and holding everyone up. Sure, you save .00001 mL of fuel by accelerating really slowly from that light. What about the fuel wasted by the four cars who had to sit idling at the light. They would have made it through had the slow person moved their ass
.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Spaceman Spiff
Oh, so you're a mechanic? An economy car with a 2.0 liter engine being driven at full throttle at 6000 rpm would use fuel at the same rate as a 6.0 liter V8 running at 2000 rpm, and most V8 engines are smaller than 6 liters.

And no one is advocating that all people should drive like old grandmas, just that people should drive normally, not with a lead foot, which usually doesn't result in getting to your destination any faster
.

No. I'm advocating that they not drive at all--fast or slow--and I foolishly thought that's what a Carfree forum was about.

Once again we get caught up in an endless argument about which car or which driving method is better, and I'm getting very bored. Kill the freekin cars!
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Old 01-21-07, 12:39 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Spaceman Spiff
Oh, so you're a mechanic? An economy car with a 2.0 liter engine being driven at full throttle at 6000 rpm would use fuel at the same rate as a 6.0 liter V8 running at 2000 rpm, and most V8 engines are smaller than 6 liters.

And no one is advocating that all people should drive like old grandmas, just that people should drive normally, not with a lead foot, which usually doesn't result in getting to your destination any faster.
Well, yeah... But who gears 2.0L engines that badly? It's usually more like a 2.0L engine turning at 3k rpm while the 6.0L is turning at 2k rpm. Even a lead foot in a Prius going 75mph will still get better mileage than a V8 going 55mph, the Prius has better Crr, Cd, A, and engine efficiency. The difference in speed is more than offset by this. Otoh, given two identical vehicles, like the Honda Civic, and Honda Civic Hybrid, the Civic may get better mileage going 55mph than the Hybrid will get going 75mph.

But, back to my main point, I am saying we should all drive like grannies on the highway/freeway, at least if we want to cut the amount of money we spend on gas.
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