New Angles

COVID-19 arrives, despite a couple decades’ worth of their self-praise about the fit between BAU and data + information + technology, as a huge surprise, not just to us commoners, but to TPTB.

This — the discombobulation of history’s greatest power elite — ought to be among the things we progressive survivalists mull in these weird and momentous times. All is definitely not what we’ve been told.

Meanwhile, as today’s contribution to your cranial recalibrating efforts, we here at DbC would direct your gaze to this image from BuzzFeed news.

Contemplate, if you will, the utter centrality of the automobile, even in one of the most iconic spots for non-automotive locomotion in this very, very troubled and unprepared empire.

cable car street in sf jammed with parked cars

Pushing the Message

Here is a hallway snapshot I took on my visit to the local car dealership this morning. Fascinating that car dealerships still get away with such shameless things. Also amusing to see that, in the “high tech”status-monitoring graphic here, there are no automobiles parked in the dealership’s lot! Paging Dr. Freud…

greenwashing at car dealership

Mexican Auto Industry Association

This post is no endorsement of any of the extreme dangers nationalism, Trumpism, or automobile manufacturing. Nevertheless, get a load of the membership of the “Mexican” auto industry’s trade group:

logo of MAIA

It would be fascinating to see a proper accounting of how money flows into and out of this industry, and to whose benefit.

But its speaks volumes about our world that such groups exist.

National Academy of Fantasy

Dig the front cover to the new study on Transitions to Alternative Vehicles and Fuels, by an elite panel at the National Academy of Science:

nas-book-cover

Charged by the powers that be with studying not the possibilities for building a sustainable transportation infrastructure but merely the prospects for making the U.S. auto fleet somewhat less wasteful, the cover’s admission that efficient cars are vaporware is a classic Freudian slip.

Meanwhile, here’s a sample of the level of thinking involved in this dutiful little scam. Why are automobiles so unusually important in the USA? The panel’s explanation:

With the automobile being by far the dominant mode of transportation for most Americans, facilitating auto travel has been a major part of DOT’s mission.

See? The auto is dominant because it is dominant! Science lives!