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Cyclists vs. Drivers - on NPR's Talk of the Nation

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Cyclists vs. Drivers - on NPR's Talk of the Nation

Old 08-26-08, 02:18 PM
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Cyclists vs. Drivers - on NPR's Talk of the Nation

https://www.npr.org/templates/story/s...oryId=93987420

Audio feed will be available after 6pm EDT. One of the interviewees is the moron whose lawsuit has held up all of San Francisco's programs to help increase bicycle access.
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Old 08-27-08, 11:29 AM
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I listened to the discussion... I thought it was weighted a bit toward the motorist view... in spite of Rob Anderson not being a motorist... he thinks like a motorist.

Of course no one was available to point out that encouraging more cycling will tend to decrease the overall congestion...

I think the most telling aspect to the San Francisco issue is Rob Anderson's comment about "not believing experts..." So I suppose he fancies himself as some sort of "expert," which then nullifies his own thinking.
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Old 08-27-08, 08:50 PM
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genec, maybe your attention wandered a bit during that somewhat dry airing, but the guy who responded to Bonehead Anderson specifically did say that congestion, according to multiple studies, went DOWN after the installation of bike lanes. The 'experts' Anderson wanted to disavow were the ones who made these findings. So Anderson is really something of a prig and a martinet. Anyone who disagrees with Anderson, expert or otherwise, is automatically discredited.

There were a few callers to the show who also made good points, but the whole tone of the show did seem to minimize the cycling conflict issues.

Better than a rant-fest, though.
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Old 08-27-08, 09:19 PM
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There's 100+ comments, I read half the list, there's much fewer "get of the d$%n road" comments than usual, which I would expect from an NPR forum. This comment was one of the more humurous:

I live in Wyoming where there's more than our fair share of "motorheads" and "rednecks". However, I've had very few problems with them. Use hand signals, be courteous, etc. and bike commuting is enjoyable.

The worst offenders are soccer moms on cell phones in big Urban Assault Vehicles. The US military could have invaded Iraq much easier and cheaper if they would have dropped a bunch of big SUVs with "My Kid's on the Honor Roll" bumper stickers and cell phones and issued each soldier a bike. I know that combination makes me invisible.


Sent by Mike | 3:27 PM ET | 08-26-2008
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Old 08-27-08, 09:38 PM
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I'm not quite sure why the fellow from Seattle was on for so long - he didn't really seem to know much about cycling or transportation issues - and he certainly didn't know anything about what happened in the critical mass incident....
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Old 08-28-08, 09:47 AM
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Originally Posted by SSP View Post
https://www.npr.org/templates/story/s...oryId=93987420

Audio feed will be available after 6pm EDT. One of the interviewees is the moron whose lawsuit has held up all of San Francisco's programs to help increase bicycle access.
Actually, he made some excellent points about comprehensive planning, the significance of apparently small details, and the desirability of grassroots neighborhood involvement.

Name calling doesn't really help unless your goals are limited to emotional catharsis.
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Old 08-28-08, 09:48 AM
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Dan Burden and other traffic engineering experts can demonstrate the benefits of narrowing streets. The objective is to obtain a slower, but smoother flow, which can actually move more cars per hour than the conventional "hurry up, then wait at the stop sign or red light" scenario.
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Old 08-28-08, 10:52 AM
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Let's not forget that Rob Anderson, the man at the center of the San Fran stall, is about as qualified as I am. He's a blogger... period. Oh, and he ran for office once and got .01% of the voting public's votes. Oh, and he lives off a government stipend.

His anti-bike lane argument isn't derived from anything realistic or any study, or any amount of expertise, nay, he's "had some run in's with cyclists" and he "doesn't like what critical mass does".

He's a guy with a chip on his shoulder... a real champion of the people.
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Old 08-28-08, 11:19 AM
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Originally Posted by ckeizer77 View Post
Let's not forget that Rob Anderson, the man at the center of the San Fran stall, is about as qualified as I am. He's a blogger... period. Oh, and he ran for office once and got .01% of the voting public's votes. Oh, and he lives off a government stipend.

His anti-bike lane argument isn't derived from anything realistic or any study, or any amount of expertise, nay, he's "had some run in's with cyclists" and he "doesn't like what critical mass does".

He's a guy with a chip on his shoulder... a real champion of the people.
+1 - in the interview he specifically rejects the opinions of "so-called experts" (meaning, actual traffic engineering professionals).

He's just an obsessed curmudgeon with time on his hands, who's managed to find an attorney who will work with him for free. Sadly, the two of them have manged to completly tie up the city of San Francisco's laudable plans to expand cycling facilties.

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Old 08-28-08, 01:30 PM
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Funny thing, 95% of the interview was of neither cyclists nor drivers.

First, the SF anti-bike curmudgeon failed to present any facts or evidence supporting his viewpoint. Just a lot of rambling BS. His dismissal of experts and study findings was just silly, clearly he's got nothing. Folks in SF passed gay marriage and they can't beat this guy?

Interviewer's comment: "bicyclists ARE self righteous about suvs" - evidently she's not impartial on the issue.

Later strange so-called cyclist call ins, and with no question or segue from interview starts out "i run stop signs and lights.." huh?

Near the end female call-in from Portland added a few sound points but couldn't save this 30 mins from being a nearly total waste of airplay - and any informed bicyclist's time.

I guess all NPRs "good" staff was off to Denver when they put this stinker together.
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Old 08-28-08, 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by SSP View Post

He's just an obsessed curmudgeon with time on his hands, who's managed to find an attorney who will work with him for free. Sadly, the two of them have manged to completly tie up the city of San Francisco.....

That is the best definition of an environmentalist that I have read it quite a while.

If its good for the goose to tie up the political process (offshore oil drilling for example), its good for the gander to tie it up as well.

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Old 08-28-08, 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Roughstuff View Post
That is the best definition of an environmentalist that I have read it quite a while.

If its good for the goose to tie up the political process (offshore oil drilling for example), its good for the gander to tie it up as well.

roughstuff
yawn. wow, you're very clever. /sarcasm
off shore drilling and name calling have exactly what to do with this?
go whine about your "lawyers" and "environmentalists" elsewhere.


...and by the way it's "it's" not "its."
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Old 08-28-08, 02:01 PM
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Originally Posted by seeker333 View Post
Funny thing, 95% of the interview was of neither cyclists nor drivers.

First, the SF anti-bike curmudgeon failed to present any facts or evidence supporting his viewpoint. Just a lot of rambling BS. His dismissal of experts and study findings was just silly, clearly he's got nothing. Folks in SF passed gay marriage and they can't beat this guy?

Interviewer's comment: "bicyclists ARE self righteous about suvs" - evidently she's not impartial on the issue.

Later strange so-called cyclist call ins, and with no question or segue from interview starts out "i run stop signs and lights.." huh?

Near the end female call-in from Portland added a few sound points but couldn't save this 30 mins from being a nearly total waste of airplay - and any informed bicyclist's time.

I guess all NPRs "good" staff was off to Denver when they put this stinker together.
That's the way I heard it too... Of course the guy from Thunderhead Alliance was a cyclist... but most everyone else was just some one with an opinion... just like the Anderson guy... who is really just some "geek without a cause."
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Old 08-28-08, 02:30 PM
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Let me see if I can sum up Rob Anderson: a 65-year old man who doesn't have a job, doesn't own a car, lives with is mother, gets a monthly government stipend and spends his free time posting on his blog. Hmmmmm, does the term "slacker" ring a bell with anyone?
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Old 08-28-08, 02:57 PM
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Originally Posted by harleyfrog View Post
Let me see if I can sum up Rob Anderson: a 65-year old man who doesn't have a job, doesn't own a car, lives with is mother, gets a monthly government stipend and spends his free time posting on his blog. Hmmmmm, does the term "slacker" ring a bell with anyone?
Well, all that may be true but it's not really relevant to the issue. Yes, he probably is a PITA curmudgeon, trying to make up for a wasted life and draw some attention to himself. Just like most of us.

In fact, NPR's choice of Anderson to represent "drivers" side of the argument is odd - he doesn't drive.

My guess is NPR hunted around for a whole day for an articulate, informed person/motorist to represent this side of the debate, and simply couldn't anyone who had an intelligent opinion that went beyond "those bikes need to get the hellouttatheroad". Frequently followed by the words "I gotta run, the kids are fighting, my orders ready and the assh@!e behind me is blowing his horn at me".
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Old 08-28-08, 03:26 PM
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Originally Posted by seeker333 View Post
Well, all that may be true but it's not really relevant to the issue. Yes, he probably is a PITA curmudgeon, trying to make up for a wasted life and draw some attention to himself. Just like most of us.

In fact, NPR's choice of Anderson to represent "drivers" side of the argument is odd - he doesn't drive.

My guess is NPR hunted around for a whole day for an articulate, informed person/motorist to represent this side of the debate, and simply couldn't anyone who had an intelligent opinion that went beyond "those bikes need to get the hellouttatheroad". Frequently followed by the words "I gotta run, the kids are fighting, my orders ready and the assh@!e behind me is blowing his horn at me".
Really, they contacted Anderson due to his lawsuit and his idiotic view that encouraging cycling will increase congestion and pollution. The only thing that has ANY merit (and it is minimal at that) is the lack of the environmental impact report... but of course no such study was ever done when streets and automobiles were first brought into the city.
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Old 08-28-08, 03:36 PM
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Are you sure that it wasn't made by FOX news and rebroadcast by NPR? It seems like typical "Fair and Balanced" reporting by an anti-cyclist reporter.
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