Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Free public transit now in 17 US metro areas due to corona virus

The US count of free public transit in response to Corona virus is now 17 metro areas. This will take pressure off people who need to get to essential jobs. Healthcare, cleaning, trash pickup, power supply, food transport, food delivery... there are many just to keep the basics working.

The US Congress is actually discussing handing over trillions of dollars to billionaires. This money would be better spent on free services.

Instead of bailing out hedge funds, why not have universal free healthcare, free public transit, free education, and guaranteed housing.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Don't drop money from the sky, make public services free

This is what to do. Make public services free.

Friday, March 20, 2020

Suddenly lots of money available, but natural limits must be considered

Human growth has pushed back the habitat of wild nature. This has led to disease epidemics.

It's time to degrow.

Printing money to hand out and stimulate the same old system that caused the problem is not a good idea. First of all, that money is no longer backed by cheap energy, so this type of stimulus will fail.

The best route is to make public services free. healthcare, education, public transportation, guaranteed housing, and such.

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Don't tolerate trolls spreading division

Trolls are spreading blame-the-victim, blame-the-boomer, #racism, and other various divisive propaganda.

Capitalist leadership, and the capitalist system are not equipped to face society-wide problems. We will have to pull ourselves out of this.

It only takes a small budget to unleashed thousands of trolls on social media. Don't be overwhelmed, just mute or block them and call on others to do so.

We provide ways to identify them, and we are open to more suggestions.

Saturday, March 14, 2020

Helicopter money and why it won't work

By now, all economists know that creating more billionaires with QE doesn't accomplish anything for the real economy. So we will hear more about pushing money to main street.

They are trying to solve financial debt. If they use printed money to do this, it is really just more of the same. The correct way to solve debt is default, but the bankers and billionaires will try to avoid this as much as possible.

What is not being discussed is the debt to the biosphere. The world has copied the US system of autos and sprawl. This is a subsidized, unsustainable system. Even if oil price goes to zero, the system draws most of its subsidy from the destruction of the biosphere. This cannot be paid with money, printed or otherwise.

Regardless of price, oil costs more joules to get a joule every day. The only way to address this is by degrowth. We are already in degrowth, the question is, will we fight it to save the rich, or will we work with it to save the biosphere.

Friday, March 13, 2020

Head of US CDC has declared that there is no charge for corona virus tests or isolation

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Helicopter money will stimulate all the wrong things

To re-stimulate the economy from the effects of the corona virus, governments and central banks will shower people with helicopter money, so named because it is like dropping cash on the population from helicopters.

This is the height of stupidity. We have the corona virus because of rampant growth. China grew so fast that natural systems were stressed to the limit.

Now, in the name of preserving a failed system and a few billionaires, money will be pushed to the bottom and create a little flurry of activity as it rushes back to the top.

It's time to recognize that growth should not be the goal. We should take advantage of the lesson nature is teaching us with the virus, and seek out gentle degrowth.

To help victims of economic shock. Make public transit, healthcare, and education free. Reform housing laws and end homelessness.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

President of Massachusetts Senate calls for #freepublictransit

In her letter, Chandler pointed to fare-free programs in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and Dunkirk, France, as examples where eliminating fares has led to greater use of public transportation, which advocates say will result in corresponding reductions in congestion and greenhouse gas emissions.

...Chandler wrote in her letter that eliminating fares at the WRTA would actually have a "relatively manageable" impact on the authority's finances. In 2018, fare revenue was 14 percent of the WRTA's operating expenses, which Chandler said was the lowest mark in a decade. The lost revenue, she said, would be "partially offset by operating efficiencies."

Monday, March 9, 2020

Peter Harrison's plan for US nationwide #freepublictransit

The fed gov spends $40B/yr on roads and $2.3B on transit which is crazy.

This locks millions of Americans into long, traffic-filled commutes while paying a fortune for a car, gas, and insurance. That’s wasted money and time Americans should be spending elsewhere.
What’s worse, 30% of our carbon footprint comes from cars and trucks. There’s no credible way to avoid climate disaster that doesn’t involve getting people out of cars and into mass transit. We need to take back our streets and make them about moving people, not cars.
But tbc good transit policy does not include punishing car owners who have done nothing wrong. This system was literally a conspiracy against transit + cities. Getting people out of cars is about creating viable alternative ways to get around a city + region conveniently. 
That means above all else making public transit 100% fare-free + accessible. The elderly, the disabled, families with strollers, and the poor need to be able to use these systems with ease.
The fed gov can help with money. Lots of it. My #free2move plan calls for a 90/10 Fed/local gov spending match. This is the same percentage that the feds set for interstate highway construction that gutted American cities and created anti-environmental suburban sprawl.
The plan calls for $1.7 trillion over 10 years to help operating and capital expansion for urban transit systems. That can mean high speed rail or just improving sidewalk and bike lane safety. Not every city needs a subway system. But every city needs safer streets. 
But fed money isn’t enough. And just empowering local governments with transit decisions will mean more roads and more homeowners blocking transit (see CA). #free2move is about regional planning + democratic control. 
That feels like a contradiction in US, but we’ve always operated at a regional level. The Constitution is extremely clunky and dated on this but metropolitan regions need to cooperate as a single commuter shed (like a river system) to make a transit system truly work.
State DOTs will just maintain roads (or get funding raided) + most cities don’t control their transit systems (like NYC w MTA). This means no elected official is ever held accountable for traffic or poor transit. #free2move requires direct voter accountability for funding 10/12
This plan doesn’t require gas tax increase or congestion pricing which are both politically toxic and regressive. Not to say those things shouldn’t be on table to discuss contextually but they aren’t part of #free2move. We have plenty of money at national level to do this. 
We can afford to build + maintain comprehensive fare-free public transit in US #free2move

Truly, we can’t afford not to invest in public transit. Our infrastructure is collapsing, our democracy is failing and our planet is dying

We need our cities to work for all of us.

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Bring us your rich, your energetic, your masses of cyclists

Heaven forbid some energetic child should jump on a fare-free bus. Or a rich person. Horrors!

Trolls are now pushing this line:

"Free transit doesn't work because new riders are mostly pedestrians and cyclists"

Who cares? They are welcome. They can change habits quickly. But gradually, car owners will change their habits... then this is what happens.

A city of 1 million in the US spends $3.6 million per day on gasoline. A 1% increase in weekday ridership on public transit would save the city dwellers $5 million/year. A 10% increase would save $50 million a year.

This is why the trolls are out in force.

Friday, March 6, 2020

109 municipalities in France have a local candidate calling for #freepublictransit

One week before the first round of the municipal elections, the Observatory of Free Transport Cities questioned the candidates' programs. Are many of them mentioning free public transport, positioning themselves in its favor? 
The Observatory has identified 109 municipalities with more than 20,000 inhabitants having at least one candidate in municipal elections offering free public transport.

Thursday, March 5, 2020

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Shale drillers "need a miracle"

Earlier this week the chief executive of Schlumberger said as much. Speaking to Reuters on the sidelines of an industry event in Saudi Arabia, Olivier Le Peuch said he expected growth in U.S. shale oil production to slow down to 600,000 to 700,000 bpd this year and further to just 200,000 bpd next year as low prices continue to take their toll.

Do people value that which is free?

A propagandist is not concerned with what you think
He is not concerned with what other people think
He is concerned with what people think other people think

Free only has meaning when there is ownership and wealth. Do we suppose that a hunter-gatherer returned to the tribal camp and said "here is some wood I found for the fire. It was free."

It's capitalism that wants us to think that most other people do not respect that which is free.

Air is extremely valuable. People treasure it. Those who are able, fight to stop its pollution.

But the capitalist system is busy trying to find ways to own it and charge for it.

The answer is yes, people value that which is free: human compassion, air, etc. Don't fall for the propaganda.