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Old 03-02-2008, 10:22 PM   #81
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This seems counter-intuitive to your argument that SUVs are evil. If they are evil, wouldn't a small SUV be less evil?
Semi quasi evil? Like a diet coke evil?
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Old 03-03-2008, 12:01 AM   #82
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You want to get it 'fixed' for society.... well, you can't....

But, some things that would help is a high gas tax like they have in Europe... but wait, most of Europe has good to great mass transit... from my knowledge only New York would cut it here... (maybe Chicago, Phily(not been there), Washington DC, and a few more... but I doubt it for the 'whole' city)...

But, make gas $6 per gallon and people will demand higher gas mileage cars... making it a 'law' to have them without 'forcing' us to buy them is a waste of time and money....

And BTW, I lived in a rich part of town when I was in London... and there were some people with so much money they would park their car outside their house (no garages for almost everybody) and just pay the ticket if they got one... it was only 20 pounds... cheap for them... you can never force people with money not to spend it on what they wish to spend unless it is illegal (and we all know they do that also!!!)...
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Old 03-03-2008, 01:16 AM   #83
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It's hard to make a judgement just by looking at the vehicle driven as to whether that person is putting baby seals in the gas tank. My volvo gets o.k. gas mileage - averaging 28 right now combined - but since my commute is only 12 miles each way, I don't fill up more than once every two weeks. A Prius just doesn't make sense for me, I'd save maybe $300/year including weekend driving.

DW carts the kids in a '02 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4x4 that gets 18 mpg on average. Cabin in Big Bear (parents but we use it more often then they) and the ease of an SUV drove that choice. Next stop, Honda Odessy, and I have no idea what the mpg is. Sometimes gas mileage has to take a back seat...er, or whatever.
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Old 03-03-2008, 01:28 AM   #84
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If we as a society decide that higher gas taxes are a good idea, or that there needs to be some kind of rationing system, then fine I will deal with that as appropriate. But even under those kinds of approaches I would expect to be permitted to make my own economic decisions about whether I want to drive a larger or smaller vehicle. If someone just wants to say "all big vehicles are bad" and then extrapolate that drivers of big vehicles are selfish jerks who thwart society's best interests, then I think there is no reasoning with such a person.
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Old 03-03-2008, 08:53 AM   #85
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I'm gonna go git one of these. I have to check and make sure its big enough to tow my fishing boat first.

If it comes with an optional oven to cook bacon in, I'm gonna get one for my wife too. She can strap her lexus into the bed.

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Old 03-03-2008, 09:51 AM   #86
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American's like those SUVs and Pickups. I have no problem with it. They will pay the additional cost. Although when I drive to work in the morning, I find it silly to see about half the vehicles on road are trucks and SUVs. Each have 1 person in it. I think the SUV phenomenon is more of a status symbol than anything else... they are paying for it in two ways... expensive vehicle and expensive fuel and upkeep. Some believe it protects them more.
What do people in other countries do to haul large bulky items around? I use my truck (about half the time) as a truck, not just personal transport. The fuel savings from buying and owning a small 3rd vehicle in a 2-person household do not justify the expense. That's why the numbers work.

I have owned a smaller fuel-efficient car. When I wanted to move something large, heavy, bulky I had to make two or three trips. This gets frustrating so when that car wore out I replaced it with a truck.

And yes, the physics of a crash dictate that occupants of a big heavy vehicle will fare better than the occupants of a small lightweight vehicle. Air bags, seat belts and crush zones do help but they do not change the physics of mass and inertia. I've seen those results up close and dirty so many times there is no debate or study that will convince me otherwise. If I could afford it and talk her into it, my wife would be driving something made by Freightliner.

As for cost-effectiveness, check out the cost of a week in ICU.
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Old 03-03-2008, 10:45 AM   #87
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What do people in other countries do to haul large bulky items around? I use my truck (about half the time) as a truck, not just personal transport. The fuel savings from buying and owning a small 3rd vehicle in a 2-person household do not justify the expense. That's why the numbers work.
I have no problem with people who buy a larger vehicle because they need it to haul work gear around or need lots of seats because they're a family of six. The thing that gets me is that some people buy a big truck because they occasionally need to haul something, like a load of bricks or lumber from the hardware store, but 99% of the time they drive solo or with one other person in the car. The $20/hr rental trucks at the chain hardware stores are much better suited for that kind of hauling, and driving a smaller vehicle saves a lot of gas. The rest of them are just Gas Guzzlers for Osama.

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And yes, the physics of a crash dictate that occupants of a big heavy vehicle will fare better than the occupants of a small lightweight vehicle.
Ram an M-1 tank with a Ford Excursion and the guys inside the tank feel a little bump. Yea, the larger, heavier vehicles fare better against smaller, lighter ones, but pit two vehicles that are about the same size and both are damaged pretty equally. Getting a larger vehicle "because it's safer" is basically an arms race thing: I can roll over a Toyota Prius and only feel a small bump.

Pity about the people inside the Prius. Darn shame. If we'd all been in a Prius, no one would have died . . .

I'll let you decide how you do the ethical accounting game there.
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Old 03-03-2008, 10:53 AM   #88
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I have no problem with people who buy a larger vehicle because they need it to haul work gear around or need lots of seats because they're a family of six. The thing that gets me is that some people buy a big truck because they occasionally need to haul something, like a load of bricks or lumber from the hardware store, but 99% of the time they drive solo or with one other person in the car. The $20/hr rental trucks at the chain hardware stores are much better suited for that kind of hauling, and driving a smaller vehicle saves a lot of gas. The rest of them are just Gas Guzzlers for Osama.
How about a minivan? I "attempt" many home repairs, and I use the minivan to do all my hauling. I have a family of 4, and it sure is nice for long trips. The gas mileage isn't great but I'm not a "Gas Guzzler for Obama"...........I see a LOT of Prius owners as being empty nesters or if one of them has a long commute, not too many families of 4 or larger have one as a primary vehicle...they're not that big........

Get me a Honda Odyssey that gets 35 mpg, and I'll buy one, simple as that.........
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Old 03-03-2008, 11:07 AM   #89
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What do people in other countries do to haul large bulky items around? I use my truck (about half the time) as a truck, not just personal transport.
I'm not in another country, but I live alone and I have never had a truck or SUV. Here is how I manage.

To begin with, my house is already furnished, and my yard landscaped, and I spend most of every day working. I don't really have any reason to be hauling excessively large bulky items around on a daily basis. I live alone and do everything myself.

I have a Camry Solara, and most things fit nicely in the trunk. For example, after Katrina I removed a HUGE quantity of hurricane debris from my property, trunkload by trunkload, with plastic sheeting laid out to protect the carpeting in the trunk. That increased my gasoline bill for the months of September-October, 2005 in comparison with having a pickup (more trips to the dump), but then I wouldn't be getting 30+ mpg with a pickup, either, so it wasn't all that much worse. It probably took a little more time also, but until my work started back up on October 28th, there wasn't much else to do but lug debris around anyway.

When the trunk of my Solara won't do (maybe once every few years), I can borrow a friend's truck or shell out the whole $25-$50 for home delivery for whatever it is. Usually I do the latter. Frank has moved one table for me and I think that has been all the truck borrowing I have done in the past five years; had he not been with me, I would have asked about delivery since I know that store will provide it for a fee.

Another option, but one I have never had to use, is to just rent a truck for the day. All of these options fit my budget nicely.
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Old 03-03-2008, 03:56 PM   #90
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How about a minivan? I "attempt" many home repairs, and I use the minivan to do all my hauling. I have a family of 4, and it sure is nice for long trips. The gas mileage isn't great but I'm not a "Gas Guzzler for Obama"...........I see a LOT of Prius owners as being empty nesters or if one of them has a long commute, not too many families of 4 or larger have one as a primary vehicle...they're not that big........

Get me a Honda Odyssey that gets 35 mpg, and I'll buy one, simple as that.........
oopsy i think you meant osama!

the odyssey gets the same/similar mpg as the pilot - i prefer the pilot because the odyssey felt HUGE when i checked it out at the dealer. the spare seat in the pilot came in handy, but usually we don't need the extra seats. i also think it's funny people stereotype certain cars for mpg - luxury sedans get 15-19 mpg cuz of all their horsies and they don't get tomatoes thrown at them, and nobody's picking on the minivans even though they have similar mpg's.

I really want a prius for my next car - by then the teen giant will (well supposedly) have his license and his own clunker and 85% of the time it's just me and the kiddos. Weekends we can squeeze into the prius ...the cabin space is actually quite large in the prius. I think I will just miss the trunk space from the pilot, but we should be essentially sans stroller by then!
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Old 03-03-2008, 05:59 PM   #91
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oopsy i think you meant osama!
Well hey, his middle name IS "Hussein"...

And the Iraqi presidents name is "Talibani"...?

WTF?!?
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Old 03-03-2008, 08:26 PM   #92
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Getting a larger vehicle "because it's safer" is basically an arms race thing: I can roll over a Toyota Prius and only feel a small bump.
Pity about the people inside the Prius. Darn shame. If we'd all been in a Prius, no one would have died . . .
I'll let you decide how you do the ethical accounting game there.
Well, to each their own here. Although I also think it is the case that two heavy vehicles colliding with each other leave less injuries than two light vehicles colliding with each other. Personally, I think it unwise to unilaterally switch to a smaller lighter vehicle in hopes others will do the same. The consequences are just too high. Just this week with my son in the truck with me, I was hit by a small sedan who was making an unwise left turn from a red light. I had the right of way, but small consolation that would have been had we been injured. Instead the other driver ripped his own front end off when he clipped my rear bumper. Am I supposed to be sympathetic or apologize that my truck is made of steel. Sorry, no sympathy here.

Last year an uninsured guy who refused to provide insurance papers or properly identify himself in a real big old beater rear ended me at a stop sign. I was stopped. He was clearly at fault and tried to give me cash on the spot to not report anything. He had no insurance. His car was so dented you couldn't tell where he'd hit me. Had I been driving a lightweight, I'm sure that behemoth would have crushed my rear end. Instead my truck was slightly dented and (most importantly, my daughter and I were unharmed).

Now maybe this can be a more complicated moral picture to you. To me, I am fortunate to have the means to buy some extra metal for my vehicle and I want to spend money on safety. I'm responsible about using public transportation but even if I weren't, I still think buying an extra safe vehicle should be a allowable option. I don't want to hurt others (and I'll control that risk by driving responsibly and well), but I'm willing to risk doing so in order to provide better safety for my family, especially protection from the many many other drivers who cannot seem to master the part about driving responsibly and well.
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Old 03-03-2008, 08:34 PM   #93
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I think a lot of folks forget about that whole physics class on the relationships between energy potential, mass and velocity.

The mazda miata had pretty good crash ratings because it was hard to flip or push over, had big beams in the doors, and most of the time a vehicle hitting it just pushed it rather than it holding its ground due to high mass.

But I wouldnt put it up against an excursion or an f-250.
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Old 03-03-2008, 09:27 PM   #94
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Ok, quit picking on us H3 owners. I get 15 -17 mpg city/hwy and plan to chip it for better milage once I get a few more miles on it. Which isn't too far from many of the other SUVs discussed here. And the bad crash rating was because of the the rear glass window, not due to structural or air bag issues. Moral is don't ride in the rear of the H3, behind the passenger seats, if you are going to be rear ended. Reason for getting the H3 was to eliminate 3 other vehicles and their special purposes (Mazda to pull behind Motorhome, F150 to pull utility trailer for hauling furniture and trash, and astro van for hauling elderly parent and friends from senior home to store and church - with the fold down electric step on the H3, they really like that).
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Old 03-04-2008, 02:06 AM   #95
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How about a minivan? . . . I have a family of 4, and it sure is nice for long trips.
If you have a family, it makes sense to have a family car everyone can pile into. (Though, if you have more than one car, I really hope your other car(s) are more efficient.) That's an appropriate use of resources in my book. My grumble is for the single guy or older couple with the pickup, SUV, whatever that gets under 20 MPG and rarely sees even three passengers.

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I see a LOT of Prius owners as being empty nesters or if one of them has a long commute, not too many families of 4 or larger have one as a primary vehicle...they're not that big........
Owning a Prius (or, for that matter, riding to the bus to work) does not make you a saint, either. A childless couple who live down the hill and are good friends of mine are Prius owners, and while they do try to make ecologically sound choices they fell down big time on the house they bought. It's a big, five bedroom house that's way bigger than they need or can put to good use. (I, the bus rider, have a smaller, but still big house that I share with my wife and son.), With no kids and no way to cut off heating to the parts of the house they don't use, they waste a lot of energy heating rooms they don't use.

People forget that, while our cars are a major consumer of fossil fuels and are major emitter of greenhouse gases, less than a third of our total fossil fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions come from the transportation sector. Another third or so comes from heating and lighting our buildings. That being the case, we can make almost as big a impact on fuels consumption and greenhouse gas emissions by living in a Prius-efficient house that is appropriately sized to our needs, and by using energy efficient appliances, heating/cooling systems*, compact fluorescent bulbs, and turning off the lights we're not using.

* My neighborhood seems to have central air conditioning units in every house. It frustrates me when I walk the dog around the neighborhood and hear house after with their AC units running pel-mel when it's a sunny but comfy 74 degrees outside and all they really need to do is open their windows and let the breeze in.
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Old 03-04-2008, 07:54 AM   #96
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If you have a family, it makes sense to have a family car everyone can pile into. (Though, if you have more than one car, I really hope your other car(s) are more efficient.) That's an appropriate use of resources in my book. My grumble is for the single guy or older couple with the pickup, SUV, whatever that gets under 20 MPG and rarely sees even three passengers.
But... that is one of the problems.... my old Monte Carlo has a 6... and is an 'acceptable' car, but only gets 17 mpg.... now, an old SUV only got 12 to 14, so it 'was' doing better... but not compared to new cars and SUVs.. am I going to get rid of it because it is not fuel efficient... NOT...

And again... if it is what I WISH to spend my money on to please ME.... then who is it for you to say I can not
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Old 03-04-2008, 09:24 AM   #97
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if it is what I WISH to spend my money on to please ME.... then who is it for you to say I can not
I don't recall anybody saying you can not. I believe they are just saying they don't think too highly of your choices.
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Old 03-04-2008, 10:20 AM   #98
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But... that is one of the problems.... my old Monte Carlo has a 6... and is an 'acceptable' car, but only gets 17 mpg.... now, an old SUV only got 12 to 14, so it 'was' doing better... but not compared to new cars and SUVs.
Unless your car or SUV has bad cylinder rings, you should be able to bring them into the shop and get a tune-up (or a tune up and a head job) that should restore your vehicle's gas mileage and performance. With today's gas prices it's a good way to save gas money and reduce your emissions. (If the rings are bad . . . you can get a full engine overhaul, but the economics of an engine overhaul might suggest buying a new car instead.)

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And again... if it is what I WISH to spend my money on to please ME.... then who is it for you to say I can not
As a society we've decided there are lots of things you must do or can't do. Drive a car, the law requires that you have a license, insurance, follow certain conventions (traffic laws) and wear a seat belt, and you're not legally allowed to drive drunk . . . even though you enjoy the buzz. You're also not legally allowed to smoke in many public places, take up pig farming in a residential neighborhood, or run over to the pharmacist or corner drug dealer and pick up any number of things even if you can afford it and enjoy the idea of being a heroine-addicted pig farmer who smokes.

We restrict people from doing many things because it harms the people around them. Shipping money by the barrel full to other countries isn't a good economic policy and is against the interests of national security. Burning the stuff is responsible for causing the air in southern California to become so polluted that it very literally makes me (and tens of thousands of other people) sick. (Air quality problems forced me to move from California to Washington State.) And there is a broad scientific and political consensus that the greenhouse gases produced by burning the stuff is putting the entire planet at risk.

You may not like it, but there's more than adequate reason to send gas-guzzling cars the way of heroine-addicted pig farmers who smoke.
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Old 03-04-2008, 10:29 AM   #99
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Or, maybe some of them were saying that you can not.... Just ignore my last post, please!
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Old 03-04-2008, 10:45 AM   #100
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If you have a family, it makes sense to have a family car everyone can pile into. (Though, if you have more than one car, I really hope your other car(s) are more efficient.) That's an appropriate use of resources in my book. My grumble is for the single guy or older couple with the pickup, SUV, whatever that gets under 20 MPG and rarely sees even three passengers.
4 cylinder Honda Accord........
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