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Stop global warming, ban drive-thrus!

Isn't this just genius?

First it was a proposed ban on plastic bags.

Now, a member of the influential Madison Plan Commission wants to ban the restaurant drive-through -- or at least restrict the ubiquitous symbol of America's auto-centric lifestyle.

"Given the concern about all the carbon going into the atmosphere, I'm not sure we should be building more places for people to sit idling in their cars," says Eric Sundquist, who was appointed to the citizen panel by Mayor Dave Cieslewicz this spring.

I think I'm in awe of the sheer brilliance of this plan.

Whoops! Did I say brilliance? I meant stupidity, as that is quite possibly the stupidest thing I have ever heard in my entire life.

This plan came about because of a new Starbucks opening, and there was debate on whether or not to let the coffee shop have a drive-thru. What these idiots think they're doing by wasting people's time with pointless restrictions like this is beyond my comprehension.

But, as Van Helsing points out,

With enough restrictions, we'll be forced to get out of our cars and go inside to get coffee, thus lowering carbon emissions, cutting gasoline usage, and striking a blow against "America's auto-centric lifestyle." Where would we be without authoritarian bureaucrats?

Without authoritarian bureaucrats, we'd be in America. With them, it's generally called "Europe". Let's keep the two separate, hmm?


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Comments (19)

The Nanny State is here. P... (Below threshold)

The Nanny State is here. Please report to your home computer terminal each morning. We will provide directions on what to wear, where to go, what to think, what to eat...........

I got an even better idea--... (Below threshold)

I got an even better idea--do away with red lights and stop signs-no stopping and starting and no idling at lights.

Drat! Now I'll have to com... (Below threshold)

Drat! Now I'll have to compute my carbon emissions for opening the restaurant door, letting the heat or air-conditioning out, twice, restarting my car, and bringing the temperature in the car back to the comfort zone.

A number of years ago I was... (Below threshold)

A number of years ago I was a planning commissioner in a California City with the same idea. However, we wanted reality and required a traffic study be made to look at the auto emissions in the drive-through queue versus the emissions from restarting the car. For a well designed facility, the drive-through won hands-down with far fewer emissions than the park and restart option. Needless to say, we approved the drive-throughs for as long as I served.

For McD's or other fast foo... (Below threshold)

For McD's or other fast food drive-thrus I can't see much of a gain on parking and going inside, but Starbuck's is so friggin' slow unless your order is for straight black coffee.

How about this Madison .. d... (Below threshold)

How about this Madison .. drive-thrus are a convenience that people use because they have better and/or more important things to do with their time. If the drive-thrus were banned, then a number of these places would fold. That means their employees lose their jobs because there aren't as many customers when they had a drive-thru.

then a number of these p... (Below threshold)

then a number of these places would fold.

Of course, this is the ultimate objective. The logical conclusion to the environmentalist's thought process is that the earth would be better off if man were not here.

"[O]bserve that in all the propaganda of the ecologists--amidst all their appeals to nature and pleas for "harmony with nature"--there is no discussion of man's needs and the requirements of his survival. Man is treated as if he were an unnatural phenomenon. Man cannot survive in the kind of state of nature that the ecologists envision--i.e., on the level of sea urchins or polar bears. . . .

In order to survive, man has to discover and produce everything he needs, which means that he has to alter his background and adapt it to his needs. Nature has not equipped him for adapting himself to his background in the manner of animals. From the most primitive cultures to the most advanced civilizations, man has had to manufacture things; his well-being depends on his success at production. The lowest human tribe cannot survive without that alleged source of pollution: fire. It is not merely symbolic that fire was the property of the gods which Prometheus brought to man. The ecologists are the new vultures swarming to extinguish that fire."

~Ayn Rand (1971), "The Anti-Industrial Revolution," Return of the Primitive

From a planning perspective... (Below threshold)

From a planning perspective, drive-thrus should be banned in dense urban centres. They require curb cuts, which disrupt pedestrian routes and take away valuable parking for businesses. For strip malls and suburbs, though, who cares?

I don't think anybody is talking about doing away with mankind, though, Clay, except the reactionary you've quoted.

A real Liberal solution wou... (Below threshold)

A real Liberal solution would be the old banana in the tailpipe.

Personally, I think Congres... (Below threshold)

Personally, I think Congress should pass a special tax on Mexican food, any beans, or perhaps spicy food in general - call it the 'Taco Bell Tax'. Certain food makes people flatulent. Flatulence contains methane which rates much higher than CO2 as far as the 'greenhouse effect' produced.

In conclusion, Save the planet - hold that fart. :)

drive-thrus should be ba... (Below threshold)

drive-thrus should be banned in dense urban centres. They require curb cuts, which disrupt pedestrian routes and take away valuable parking for businesses.

But, we aren't talking about this in the context of planning, are we?

I don't think anybody is talking about doing away with mankind, though, Clay, except the reactionary you've quoted.


The only hope for the world is to make sure there is not another United States: We can't let other countries have the same number of cars, the amount of industrialization, we have in the U.S. We have to stop these Third World countries right where they are. And it is important to the rest of the world to make sure that they don't suffer economically by virtue of our stopping them. -- Michael Oppenheimer, Environmental Defense Fund

We, in the green movement, aspire to a cultural model in which killing a forest will be considered more contemptible and more criminal than the sale of 6-year-old children to Asian brothels. -- Carl Amery

The collective needs of non-human species must take precedence over the needs and desires of humans. -- Dr. Reed F. Noss, The Wildlands Project

If I were reincarnated, I would wish to be returned to Earth as a killer virus to lower human population levels. -- Prince Phillip, World Wildlife Fund

Phasing out the human race will solve every problem on earth, social and environmental. -- Dave Forman, Founder of Earth First!

...once again demonstrating... (Below threshold)
Sheik Yur Bouty:

...once again demonstrating that hyperBS is an uninformed waste of pixels.

I can understand why you th... (Below threshold)

I can understand why you think Ayn Rand is a reactionary, though. After all, she was a champion of capitalism, the only moral economic system that has ever existed. But capitalism doesn't play well with your liberal religion of the collective as god. She also embraced the belief that the individual is the smallest minority, and it is his rights that must be guarded against the tyranny of the majority. She believed strongly in the Constitution as a document that places limits on government, without which we would be just like other countries.

Pretty reactionary stuff, eh?

I can read Hayek and think ... (Below threshold)

I can read Hayek and think to myself, "Guy makes some decent points," but Rand actually sucks at writing, and brings no new ideas to the table. She's great if you're an 18 year old Young Republican, though.

As for all those clever people you've cited above, we weren't talking about them, and they aren't mainstream environmentalists. I hadn't heard any of that stupidity before. I guess my far-left human-hating enviro-wacko position would be something along the lines of "Use as much as you need. Shut the lights off when you leave your house." Digging up quotes by fringe lunatics might be a fruitful way for you to spend your Friday morning, but other people have better things to do.

As for all those clever ... (Below threshold)

As for all those clever people you've cited above, we weren't talking about them, and they aren't mainstream environmentalists.

But, that is the context of the thread, isn't it? Unless, of course, you believe that restaurant drive-throughs should be banned in the interest of the environment.

Digging up quotes by fringe lunatics might be a fruitful way for you to spend your Friday morning, but other people have better things to do.

Gawsh. Thanks for your concern, but there was really no digging required. You'd be surprised at how common this fringe lunatic thought really is.

I'm beginning to think p... (Below threshold)

I'm beginning to think people like the aforementioned idiot exist to prove stupidity is painless.

Rand actually sucks at w... (Below threshold)

Rand actually sucks at writing, and brings no new ideas to the table. She's great if you're an 18 year old Young Republican, though.

Yeah. It's all that reactionary stuff, huh? That founding father's drivel is pretty old hat stuff. We don't necessarily need good ideas as much as new ideas. Change for the sake of change is all good, right?

Okay. Enough sarcasm. The truth, is we don't need new ideas, what we need is more implementation of the old ideas. We need more of the freedom talked about in the Constitution. We need less regulations and constraints on our economy. What we need is more free trade and more free markets. What's going to kill us in the end is the burgeoning weight that government is placing on the backs of those evil corporations. The most vibrant economies are those that are not moving towards socialism, but those that are becoming more capitalistic. Hell, even China's figured that out.

I would be surprised... (Below threshold)

I would be surprised, because as an environmentalist, I've never heard of any of those people except whichever inbred prince that is.

If you insist that everybody who takes the threat of global warming seriously is a tree-hugging wacko, that's your business.

More free trade? If that meant the complete dissolution of the American middle class as wealth flows to burgeoning consumer markets, e.g India and China, would you be okay with that? I actually would, as I don't work in manufacturing and I don't feel that any nation is entitled to be prosperous, but would that fit with your vision for the future? If so, kudos on being consistent.

Ayn Rand: shitty author. Meaning: regardless of the import of her ideas, which have already been pretty well articulated by a bunch of people smarter than her, her prose is awful, her tone screechy, and her work on the whole worth nothing more than a cursory introduction to libertarian political philosophy. Grown-ups should just go ahead and read Robert Nozick's Anarchy, State, & Utopia if they're interested in that side of the spectrum of political philosophy.

Not only does the drive thr... (Below threshold)

Not only does the drive thru make sense when it comes to eliminating the need to re-heat and re-cool the car after stopping and restarting, and reduce the amount of land required for additional parking spaces, but I love them because I don't have to get my kids in and out of the car. When a child is sleeping in a car seat it is great to not have to wake them up and get them out of the car and then get them all strapped back in. It is so much more convenient, and safe, to go through the drive through to pick up a bucket of chicken or your dry cleaning than to balance an infant and a toddler and a bag full of hot food or clean clothes through a busy parking lot. I know it is possible to be held up in a drive thru, but I feel much safer in the drive thru than in a dark parking lot at night. I would opt for more drive thru businesses rather than less. I use the drive thru at the bank much more often than I park and go inside.

I am old enough to remember when there were no such things as "pay at the pump" gas stations, too. I was so thankful they came along by the time I had kids. I could pump gas with the kids safe in the car, rather than having to drag them inside. Not having to go into the convenience store, or a fast food restaurant, also helps with the "Mommy can I have a ...." problem also.






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