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Re: Burns:: Friday Fanaticism

Ah...but a Hayabusa, excessive as it is in its own right, is highly efficient....it get good gas mileage, uses less than a lane on the freeway, and will do less damage to me, my car, or my bike when it hits me.

And, while we may be hated, we probably have the highest number of immimgrants per year of any country on the planet...so we can't be all that bad....
 

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Re: Burns:: Friday Fanaticism

Well, it may not be against the law...but some of these things *do* affect me, albeit in a "potential" or "indirect" fashion.

SUVs and boats that use a lot of fuel increase our dependence on foreign oil, which can affect the price of my gas, or of the natural resources (e.g. alaska) we may have to tap to reduce this dependence. These vehicles also contribute to diminished air quality, which may affect my health or happiness.

SUVs may also contribute to congestion and present a safety risk to those of us who don't drive them.

Minor points, pehaps, but enough to put SUVs and their owners in a bad light for many people....
 

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Re: Burns:: Friday Fanaticism

I'm not sure I follow your argument. Heavy users push down petroleum prices? Yet efficient, green vehicles drive our economy? Those statements, without clarification, aren't even in agreement, and the US economy has far more important drivers than green-emission vehicles. Hint: consumer goods, agriculture, energy, transportation, technology...

Are you trying to state that big fuel users create large demand, and thus an incentive for oil-producing countries to continue to produce? This may have been what lead to a giant oil industry, but continued increased demand puts us on the losing end of the supply/demand equation when the supply is provided by a source that takes dollars out of our economy.

You're correct that the cost of gasoline in the US is cheap...less than orange juice, milk, or designer bottled water. But gas prices are driven primarily by supply (controlled for the most part, and sometimes artificially, by OPEC) and by government regulation, including taxes and clean air standards (which contributes to why gas is so much more expensive in Europe).

The fact remains that most of the oil the US consumes is from outside the US, so decreasing use by definition decreases our dependency on foreign imports, and reduces the need for us to explore in areas like Alaska and offshore.

Further, if oil is a finite resource (and it probably is, though there's evidence that it may not be), prices will necessarily rise if and when the resource dwindles with a steady demand. So doing your best to conserve helps keep prices down, though perhaps not on a timeline that we ourselves can enjoy.

Finally, regardless of how much oil you think is left in this planet, burning fuel causes waste, and burning less causes less waste, even in efficient vehicles.

And I *still* can see around SUVs when I'm on my bike, and definitely don't want to get hit by one.
 
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