Thoughts and Adventures From Greenlite Heavy Industries

Thursday, January 8, 2009

A Bold New Plan

Despite being addicted to politics I’ve really tried to keep this blog free of Washington nonsense, but now I just can’t keep quiet. I simply can’t believe that one of Mr. Obama’s first actions, his so-called Bold New Plan, will be to borrow another $775 billion from China so that more Americans can go to Wal Mart and buy more cheap junk manufactured in China. Is it possible for me to refuse this loan? Can I tell Mr. Obama thanks but no thanks, keep my five hundred bucks, and don’t put my kids even further into debt.
The way I see it the United States of America is in crisis mode, the problems as I see them are as follows:
1. Massive consumer debt.
2. Poor overall health and almost non-existent preventative medicine.
3. Global climate change.
4. Our crushing debt to foreign governments.
5. The daily loss of manufacturing jobs.
6. Our dependence on foreign energy.
7. The nonsensical abuse of both illegal and prescription drugs.
Mr. Obama’s plan addresses none of these problems and contributes to nearly all of them. If the next President wants to do something bold might I suggest what I call the Two-Wheel Solution.
The Two-Wheel Solution is a massive restructuring of our road system to accommodate two-wheeled transportation: namely bicycles. Cars would still have a place – transporting kids, carpooling to work, taking long trips – but there is no reason why the majority of trips currently taken in cars couldn’t be taken on a bicycle, if, and this is a big if, the trip could be taken safely. As a person who pedaled over two thousand miles last year I will be the first to admit that bicycling is dangerous, the danger being automobiles.
Our roads are designed for cars; bicycles are scarcely even given a second thought. It’s no wonder that people drive cars as our world is designed for them. It’s time for that to change. Instead of building more roads and desperately drilling for less and less oil we should invest our tax dollars into creating bike lanes – either new or the conversion of existing automobile lanes. This gives drivers a choice, they can sit in gridlock or they can join the healthy happy bikers zooming past them in the bike only lane.
Increasing the use of bicycles in our daily lives reduces all seven of the problems stated above. Americans are unhappy and unhealthy, a situation many of us try to rectify by driving a fifty thousand dollar vehicle, bought on credit, to a gym where we spend hours working off the donuts we ate while sitting in traffic. Commute twenty miles a day and you can eat all the donuts you want while simultaneously eliminating that car payment and gym membership. In addition, by eliminating time spent in traffic and time at the gym I’d wager that most Americans would find a net increase in their daily free time.
The Two-Wheel Solution will reduce consumer debt, increase overall health, reduce carbon emissions, reduce our national debt, increase domestic manufacturing jobs and reduce our dependence on foreign oil. As a side benefit we will find a net decrease in drug abuse because healthy people are less likely to find happiness in a bottle, pill or pipe.
Who would oppose such an idea? Let’s start with the oil companies, then the prescription drug companies and finally the now begging on their knees automobile companies. That’s a lot of Lear Jets and tailored suits, so don’t hold your breath.

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