The problem is our cities have been designed around a highly inefficient form of transit... as we come to realize this, our cities too will change.
The personal auto won't go away... but how it is used and integrated into society will change... and with that change will also be the embracing of efficient transit, such as mass transit and, the bicycle.
Need another example... consider the congestion charges of London... and the attempt to do the same in NYC. These are clear indicators of the realization that the cities must and will change. "The Dutch" just realized it first.
The thing is we stand at this cusp of a new beginning... and how we embrace it could spell how we deal with our collective future. We could go down kicking and screaming as a population... fighting for oil until we simply have no other choice... or we could embrace the future of natural resources and use our ingenuity to discover, design and build a new stronger nation.
As far as cars being a bad idea to begin with... not hardly... they were an alternative to the horse and buggy... a rather dirty technology that had itself reached it's own peak. (the amount of horse manure and urine that hit the streets of NYC at the time were just overwhelming, by comparison, the auto was "clean.") The auto was a replacement alternative technology... one we have just allowed to go a bit too far. Time for Change.