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Loss of drivers has hurt the us economy.

Old 03-07-06, 09:43 PM
  #51  
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HAHA. Slick!
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Old 03-07-06, 09:47 PM
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You know, I'm pretty pleased with the level of discussion.

I'd like to put the thread in P n R, but that'd ruin it! So hopefully we can continue to behave nicely.

Thanks, Lala - MOderator.
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Old 03-08-06, 12:44 AM
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But one thing I'm pretty sure of: The OP was ridiculous to blame this loss of jobs on us!!!

I never said or implied this statement, hell I don't even own a car so by your logic I should be blaming myself. But there is alot of other people who choose to own a car and I don't think a dictator should rise up and tell these people they have to get ride of their cars, unless there is absolute proof that the world would be a better place without them.

I originally just thought of a question and wanted some feedback. I've got some good ideas from people, one of them being that there would be an increase in jobs by increasing mass transit and if people could give a 100% gaurantee that this would be the case then i'm all for it. The problem I have with this idea is getting people to ditch their cars and using the mass transit and that is what would be required in order for people to keep their jobs working at these new facilities. Theres a train that runs from San Diego to L.A. and their losing money on it, because you guessed it, not enough people are using it.

Another question that hit me when reading the responses to my post was why do people have such anger towards cars? Is it the pollution? If its the pollution, I've only noticed this pollution in cities because obviously theres alot of cars in such a small are. But when I go to the mountains, open areas or oceans I don't notice any pollution. So, If we say the pollution is just gathered in the cities than in relation to the size of the earth that pollution is meaningless because if we were able to disperse the polution across the whole earth it would be: void, null, non existent.

Maybe people are angry at cars because of global warming and "some" scientist feel that car pollution is contributing to it. Well to that I say that other scientists complete disagree and until there is a consensus among these groups I will not take a side on this argument. And I don't know why some groups choose to. Maybe some scientists who are against global warming work for the oil and automotive industries, to that I say probably right. But the other side of the coin is also true the people who scientist who think global warming is caused by man and the industry are getting paid by the environmentalist groups. And these environmentalist orgs. are getting funded by the government. Do I smell a possible motive here for both sets of scientist. So again I cannot see why people would feel so strongly using this argument to fan their hatred towards cars. One more thing the amount of carbon dioxide released by a volcano is way more than industry and all the cars combined. Exscuse me for not looking up the percentage I am to lazy right now.

If I forgot more reasons why cars are an abomination to the world please feel free to let me know because I love learning from all of my fellow people out there.
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Old 03-08-06, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by obliterator
Maybe people are angry at cars because of global warming and "some" scientist feel that car pollution is contributing to it. Well to that I say that other scientists complete disagree and until there is a consensus among these groups I will not take a side on this argument. And I don't know why some groups choose to. Maybe some scientists who are against global warming work for the oil and automotive industries, to that I say probably right. But the other side of the coin is also true the people who scientist who think global warming is caused by man and the industry are getting paid by the environmentalist groups. And these environmentalist orgs. are getting funded by the government.
Sounds like Rush Dimbulb strikes again. Doesn't anyone read anymore? Virtually ALL scientists agree that global warming is occurring and is caused by man. The only real exceptions -- and they are in the minority -- are from scientists in the employ of oil companies. The only conspiracy is that of the oil lobby and its shills (e.g. Limbaugh) who have huge pockets to wage wars of misinformation and appear to have "Clear Channel" in their back pocket. The idea that impoverished environmentalist groups could have bribed hundreds of scientists is ludicrous.
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Old 03-08-06, 08:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Roody
The suburbs of Detroit to this day are booming areas.
Is Birmingham (MI -- not the others) still the richest suburb in the world? Or did they have to relinquish that title during the down-sizings?
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Old 03-08-06, 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by MarkS
Is Birmingham (MI -- not the others) still the richest suburb in the world? Or did they have to relinquish that title during the down-sizings?

I think you meant West Bloomfield.
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Old 03-08-06, 09:52 AM
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Originally Posted by FXjohn
I think you meant West Bloomfield.
It might be now. 20+ years ago there was a documentary on Birmingham, the richest suburb in the world.
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Old 03-08-06, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by obliterator
Our economy was not built on people smoking. There would be plenty of smaller towns that would cease to exist if it wasn't for the automobile.
Well, actually our economy was built on smoking, or a lot of it was. it was th development of a good strain of Virginia tobacco that actually got this country rolling back in the Jamestown days. Tobacco export started in roughly 1619, and within 20 years it was by far the largest industry in the British colonies. Tragically, it was slave labor that enabled tobacco production, and it was no coincidence that slaves were first sold in Virginia in 1619. Within 100 years almost 3 million slaves had been kidnapped from Africa and imported to the tobacco growing regions. Cotton production did not even hit th big time until somewhat later.

Even today, tobacco growh and manufacture is huge business in regions of the US and even Canada.
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Old 03-08-06, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by MarkS
It might be now. 20+ years ago there was a documentary on Birmingham, the richest suburb in the world.
Birmingham certainly has a high per capita income, maybe one of the highest, but is not really "rich." I think of it as a place where engineers and upper level and midlevel auto execs lived. The owners of the auto and related companies lived in Grosse Pointe, certainly one of the wealthiest communities in the world. (West Bloomfield, asFXJohn said, might be the current wealthiest in Detroit, or right up there.)

My mother grew up in Grosse Pointe. She lived on a nice but modest street. Her parents were both school teachers, and most of her neighbors were teachers, shopkeepers, chauffeurs, and others who "served" the wealthy. There was literally a wall down the alley to separate their street from the hoity-toities!

I grew up in Highland Park, home of Ford's first big assembly plant and Headquarters of Chrysler. Ford's social engineers designed Highland Park. In my part of the city, there were 3 blocks off Woodward Ave. The first block was ornate houses for executives. The second block was nice big houses for managers. The third lock was more modest, for foremen and supervisors. Assembly workers lived a few blocks north, and laborers (mostly black) lived a few blocks to the west. Highland Park is now in bankruptcy, and I believe it is the poorest city in the nation.
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Old 03-08-06, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by obliterator
Theres a train that runs from San Diego to L.A. and their losing money on it, because you guessed it, not enough people are using it.

You could argue that "they" (actually, it's "us") are losing money on roads all over the place. No-one is buying a ticket every time they use most highways, yet we have to buy a ticket to use the train - does that seem fair?
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Old 03-08-06, 01:27 PM
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Originally Posted by obliterator
if we were able to disperse the polution across the whole earth it would be: void, null, non existent.
Unfortunately we are dispersing it all over the world, and it is definitely not null and void.


Originally Posted by obliterator
Maybe people are angry at cars because of global warming and "some" scientist feel that car pollution is contributing to it. Well to that I say that other scientists complete disagree and until there is a consensus among these groups I will not take a side on this argument.

And I don't know why some groups choose to. Maybe some scientists who are against global warming work for the oil and automotive industries, to that I say probably right. But the other side of the coin is also true the people who scientist who think global warming is caused by man and the industry are getting paid by the environmentalist groups.

The scientific community is overwhelmingly recognizing global warming as a problem. All scientists are paid by someone, but believe me, enviro groups definitely cannot afford to bias that many.

Originally Posted by obliterator
If I forgot more reasons why cars are an abomination to the world please feel free to let me know because I love learning from all of my fellow people out there.
pavement over farmland and wilderness
traffic accidents
ground level ozone
oil depletion
oil wars
airborne particulate pollution
Exxon Valdese
drive by shootings
obesity
smog
global warming
tire dump fires
solvent evaporation
watershed runoff
road rage
lead poisoning

Help me out here some of you!
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Old 03-08-06, 01:37 PM
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Good job cooker, but you forgot a couple that concern me:

The aesthetics--cars, roads, big-box stores, and parking lots make the world look a whole lot uglier.

Social costs, a loss of the sense of community caused by the sprawl, and the lack of opportunites to interact with your neighbors as you walk, cycle, or share a bus seat.
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Old 03-08-06, 01:39 PM
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There has been some decent discussion here (of course peppered with polemics). I can't quite tease out Obliterator's personal position, but I do have a response to the original question. It truly is unsustainable to continute to burn fossil fuels the way we do. The unsustainability is both economic and environmental (this includes the health concerns related to fossil fuel combustion). But changing things doesn't have to result in a loss of jobs. As others have commented, throughout history, one thing has given way to another and some people have had to adapt. But trying to deny that the change has to be made does not preserve the jobs and I believe that it ultimately will have an even worse effect on the economy.
Oil is getting very expensive and the vast majority of it comes to us from parts of the world that we shouldn't let our economic well-being depend on (middle east, venezuela). Just today there has been talk of Iran (OPEC's largest producer) retaliating against the US and the EU for having them brought before the UN Security Council for their nuclear activities by cutting off oil supplies. Though we don't buy directly from Iran, many countries do and losing that oil on the market would drive prices way up for everybody. Though the reasons for our policies are more complex than oil, oil plays a HUGE role in our involvement in the Middle East. It is dangerous for the US economy to allow itself to depend on oil from the Middle East and Venezuela. (and the Arctic Wildlife Refuge isn't going to save us. The amount of oil there is miniscule compared to our consumption and compared to Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, and Venezuela.)
The economic effects of climate change will probably also be very negative. There is VERY little debate in the scientific community about if global warming is happening or not (a brief search through peer-reviewed literature shows overwhelming consensus that it is indeed happening and that human activities are contributing to it.) and most forecasts don't look pretty. It's reached the point that major financial institutions and insurance companies are starting to take a hard look at what might happen and how to deal with it. And thus far, I've ignored the health effects of breathing exhaust from fossil-fuel combustion (though, if we were to burn natural gas, it actually burns quite clean. But it's also quite expensive).
The economy can adapt. Germany's solar panel industry is booming and there's no reason why we shouldn't be able to do the same. I think cars are going to continue to exist, but we will have to find new ways to power them (solar, wind, hydro, bio, etc.) Electric cars of some sort will probably replace petrolium-burning cars (thus preserving the "cars" jobs, though the US auto industry (except Ford) is itself in the foot by not developing new car technologies) and new industries will grow around car batteries and other forms of power storage. The economy is going to have to change, but it can be a good (conscious, pre-meditated) change that will reduce or eliminate our dependence on foreign oil, avert or mitigate the effects of human-induced climate change, and sprout new industries that will compensate for lost jobs in the oil industry. Or we can try to continue to live as we are, buying bigger and bigger vehicles that pollute, increase our dependence on hostile countries, and encourage a sub-economy (the petrolium-dependent automobile economy) that, at some point, is going to crash. I think it's clear which path we should take.

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Old 03-08-06, 02:39 PM
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Originally Posted by cooker

pavement over farmland and wilderness
traffic accidents
ground level ozone
oil depletion
oil wars
airborne particulate pollution
Exxon Valdese
drive by shootings
obesity
smog
global warming
tire dump fires
solvent evaporation
watershed runoff
road rage
lead poisoning

Help me out here some of you!

You forgot how inefficient they are. Space,money, energy, time.

It isn't just obesity, even thin people can have poor cardiovascular health right?

You forgot road kill. According to the ranger our local park has been wiped clean of skunks by cars. They must have had a niche in the scheme of things around here.
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Old 03-08-06, 03:13 PM
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There have been hundreds of thousands of jobs lost from large corporations like GM in the past couple years, the economy is still going (albeit not well if everyone is working at a subsistence level at walmart). The US economy wouldn't crumble if the big three auto giants went bankrupt (oops they already are for the most part). Standard of living would go down for everyone who lost their job, that's for sure. But then again they wouldn't be buying cars any more so they'd save money in the long run.
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Old 03-08-06, 05:01 PM
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Obliterator,

You do raise some interesting points, esp about mass transit. You are right, ultimately it boils to consumers actually using it. Economically it doesn't make sense to fund a system that loses money. Unfortunately, private cars are so ingrained in US culture, most people probably won't give them up until they absolutely can't afford it. We might or might not be reaching that point soon.

As for environmental issues... it's a misconception perpetutated by some people circles acting out of pure self-interest that there is not consensus about this issue. A solid majority of climate scientists believe human emissions of CO2 are a significant contributor to global warming. We don't know this for certain, and there are always going to be a few rogues who disagree, but most reputable scientists agree on this. Also, in some areas like the San Fernando valley, auto emissions are responsible for at least several hundred deaths annually.

This has been discussed on another thread, but there's also the isolating psychological effect of driving. When people drive, they are not only enclosed spacially, but also psychologically. People who spend excessive amounts of time in cars are more likely to become angry at other drivers and pedestrian because they tend to view everything outside the vehicle as objects, rather than people.
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Old 03-08-06, 08:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Roody
I live in Lansing, the city that brought you Oldsmobile and Fisher Body. We have lost thousands of jobs due to automaion in the auto plants. The manufacturing job losses in most industries is much more due to automation than to reduced consumption. In some industries, job loss has been caused by plants moving to regions and countries with lower labor classes.
This is definitely true. In the production industry that I work, we've increased capacity, but carry fewer employees than 10, 20 years ago. Moreso than the automation, is that our quality monitoring is much improved.
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Old 03-09-06, 10:29 PM
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Originally Posted by obliterator
I never said or implied this statement, hell I don't even own a car so by your logic I should be blaming myself. But there is alot of other people who choose to own a car and I don't think a dictator should rise up and tell these people they have to get ride of their cars, unless there is absolute proof that the world would be a better place without them.
Absolute proof? There is never going to be any argument (for anything) that will convince everybody (not even this one).


Originally Posted by obliterator
I've got some good ideas from people, one of them being that there would be an increase in jobs by increasing mass transit and if people could give a 100% gaurantee that this would be the case then i'm all for it.
So you're saying that you do not and will not support giving up even some cars in favor of mass transit, unless "people" give you a "100% gaurantee [sic]" that any jobs lost in the auto industry will be replaced in mass transit? What are you, on crazy pills? No one can give you that guarantee - or rather, anyone can, but it's worthless. The idea is to reduce oil dependence, pollution, etc etc (see above posts). It's nice that you're concerned about auto workers and their families, but come on. Besides, it's not going to happen overnight, if at all. We won't all wake up one day and learn that from that day on, there will suddenly be no more automobiles produced, sold, repaired, etc. It will have to be at least a somewhat gradual transition.


Originally Posted by obliterator
Another question that hit me when reading the responses to my post was why do people have such anger towards cars? Is it the pollution? If its the pollution, I've only noticed this pollution in cities because obviously theres alot of cars in such a small are. But when I go to the mountains, open areas or oceans I don't notice any pollution. So, If we say the pollution is just gathered in the cities than in relation to the size of the earth that pollution is meaningless because if we were able to disperse the polution across the whole earth it would be: void, null, non existent.
Your argument is not only illogical, it's irrelevant. By that logic, if we dispersed the populations of cities across the whole earth, people would no longer exist. Yes, pollution is more prevalent in highly populated areas. Yes, if we "were able to disperse" it across the globe, there would be less in the cities (and more in other places). That would not make it "void, null, non existent", nor is it meaningless. Again, the idea is to reduce the pollution we create, not find something to do with it. Also, pollution is not just air pollution. In my experience, as an example: In rural areas, people are more likely to do their own oil changes - and are more likely to just dump the used oil in the backyard, rather than disposing of it properly. That's not to mention antifreeze, any number of cleaning chemicals, and (non-landfill) trash dumps. That's some pretty serious pollution of the local water table. Just because you don't notice any pollution in the mountains, open areas, oceans, or anywhere else, doesn't mean it isn't there.


Originally Posted by obliterater
Maybe people are angry at cars because of global warming and "some" scientist feel that car pollution is contributing to it. Well to that I say that other scientists complete disagree and until there is a consensus among these groups I will not take a side on this argument. And I don't know why some groups choose to. Maybe some scientists who are against global warming work for the oil and automotive industries, to that I say probably right. But the other side of the coin is also true the people who scientist who think global warming is caused by man and the industry are getting paid by the environmentalist groups. And these environmentalist orgs. are getting funded by the government. Do I smell a possible motive here for both sets of scientist. So again I cannot see why people would feel so strongly using this argument to fan their hatred towards cars.
I'm gonna let this one go as it's already been answered by a couple of others.


Originally Posted by obliterator
One more thing the amount of carbon dioxide released by a volcano is way more than industry and all the cars combined. Exscuse me for not looking up the percentage I am to lazy right now.
Sorry, you're not excused. I refuse to even credit this without some supporting documentation. It's not even remotely precise as stated - an average volcano? A specific eruption? All "industry" and all the cars in the world? Or just in the US? If you are "to lazy [sic]" to look up the facts, don't try to refer to them.
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Old 03-09-06, 11:15 PM
  #69  
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Originally Posted by obliterator
Another question that hit me when reading the responses to my post was why do people have such anger towards cars? Is it the pollution? If its the pollution, I've only noticed this pollution in cities because obviously theres alot of cars in such a small are. But when I go to the mountains, open areas or oceans I don't notice any pollution. So, If we say the pollution is just gathered in the cities than in relation to the size of the earth that pollution is meaningless because if we were able to disperse the polution across the whole earth it would be: void, null, non existent.
What about all the third world countries the United States has added to its global empire through economic debt just so the US could invade with its oil companies? Try visiting Ecuador and telling me polution is null.
You think we have pollution in our cities here? You ain't seen nothing.
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Old 03-09-06, 11:18 PM
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Originally Posted by obliterator
What good would a clean environment be if nobody was here to enjoy it because they all died of diseases and hungry.
You think we are the only species on this planet?
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Old 03-10-06, 10:40 AM
  #71  
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You think we are the only species on this planet?
There's a difference between thinking we're the only species on the planet and thinking that we as humans should value human life first and other life second. While you may think that moral duties towards animals and the environment are as important as or more important than moral duties towards humans.... you're probably not going to convince any of us who disagree. I'm an environmentalist-type, but mainly because I think that caring for the environment benefits humans.
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Old 03-10-06, 02:22 PM
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Originally Posted by MarkS
Sounds like Rush Dimbulb strikes again. Doesn't anyone read anymore? Virtually ALL scientists agree that global warming is occurring and is caused by man. The only real exceptions -- and they are in the minority -- are from scientists in the employ of oil companies. The only conspiracy is that of the oil lobby and its shills (e.g. Limbaugh) who have huge pockets to wage wars of misinformation and appear to have "Clear Channel" in their back pocket. The idea that impoverished environmentalist groups could have bribed hundreds of scientists is ludicrous.
Uh, +1. Thatís how you say ďyeah, thatís rightĒ in forum-ese, right? +1?

Obliterator-I donít mean this to sound rude at all, but Ďwhat would happen if no one bought new carsí is a silly question, because itís a silly premise, because itís a silly idea. Itís along the lines of something like Ďwell what if we made minimum wage $100, then no one would be poorí. Just because itís ridiculous to make minimum wage $100 an hour doesnít mean itís ridiculous to make it, $10 an hour, or whatever, etc.

Youíre trying to generate ideas, but you donít know what you want to know and a bizarre absolute- no one ever buys a new car again- as a starting point isnít a good place to generate ideas. What is it youíre actually trying to figure out? Iím interested.
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Old 03-10-06, 10:38 PM
  #73  
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Originally Posted by cerewa
There's a difference between thinking we're the only species on the planet and thinking that we as humans should value human life first and other life second. While you may think that moral duties towards animals and the environment are as important as or more important than moral duties towards humans.... you're probably not going to convince any of us who disagree. I'm an environmentalist-type, but mainly because I think that caring for the environment benefits humans.
Hey, I'm all about the benifits too. I think it would greatly benifit us to value the lives of other species as we value our own. Perhaps we will learn from them someday if they are still alive.
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Old 03-11-06, 01:33 AM
  #74  
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Originally Posted by obliterator
Has anyone thought about how many jobs would be lost if people gave up purchasing new cars?
this question is based "soley" on the assumption that everyone cares about people losing their jobs. if all the car, tobacco, alcohol, and commercial firearm's producers went out of business i'd have a big fat party

ps and about all this 'high paying job' crap, maybe if people didnt buy big mcmansions 40 miles from their jobs and didnt commute in their gas gobbling SUV's they wouldnt need so much money
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Old 03-11-06, 08:28 AM
  #75  
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Originally Posted by tehz
this question is based "soley" on the assumption that everyone cares about people losing their jobs. if all the car, tobacco, alcohol, and commercial firearm's producers went out of business i'd have a big fat party

ps and about all this 'high paying job' crap, maybe if people didnt buy big mcmansions 40 miles from their jobs and didnt commute in their gas gobbling SUV's they wouldnt need so much money
Groovy; who cares? Indeed! Power to the People!

Woo Hoo! Par-tay!
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