What Your Commute Indicates About Your Wealth
The less money you have, the more time you probably spend getting to your job. Christine Quinn, a candidate for mayor of New York City, wants to smooth out the curve.
The less money you have, the more time you probably spend getting to your job. In New York City, this is truer than ever, as Jim O’Grady of WNYC reports:
During Mayor Bloomberg's three terms, it became especially expensive to rent or buy a home in Manhattan and neighborhoods close to it. Over the last 10 years, most of the growth in commuting to well-paying jobs in Manhattan has occurred in Manhattan itself -- and in places like Williamsburg and Greenpoint, Downtown and Brownstone Brooklyn.
That development has pushed some New Yorkers of limited means to neighborhoods further from Manhattan, where most of the jobs are located. And increasing numbers of New Yorkers are traveling within or between the outer boroughs to get to work, often using a Manhattan-centric transportation system that is not well suited to getting them where they need to go.
Mayoral candidate Christine Quinn, again leading the polls thanks to Anthony Weiner’s self-destructive sexting compulsion, is making commute times into a central campaign issue. She promises to take action that would result in a one-hour cap by 2023 on one-way commuting for residents of the five boroughs. How? Here are some of her proposals:
She said she'd fight to wrest control of the MTA from Albany, and called for the mayor to be given the power to appoint the president of New York City Transit, the MTA agency that controls the city's subways and buses...
Quinn also called for more buses. Instead of building new, costly subways, she said the city should expand its Select Bus Service, adding 10 new routes over the next four years...
Quinn also called for an expansion of ferry service, with new stops in Brooklyn at Atlantic Avenue and in Red Hook, in Astoria, Queens, on Roosevelt Island, as well at East 91st Street in Manhattan and Ferry Point Park in The Bronx.
More buses, more ferries, a tighter mayoral clamp on the MTA...all of these measures may help. But the problem of income inequality in the New York City is not likely to go away even when Staten Island residents can get to their midtown Manhattan jobs in under 60 minutes. As this incredibly cool interactive infographic at the New Yorker shows, the texture of the city’s extreme inequalities is readily mappable. Here is the map for the train I ride:
The graph’s low points are in the outer reaches of Brooklyn and Queens, while the peaks are in the fashionable Dumbo neighborhood of Brooklyn (along the waterfront facing Manhattan), at Union Square and on the Upper East Side. Notice too the wild gyrations of household income within Manhattan. The lowest point on the graph is at Delancey St. on the Lower East Side. In this census tract on the border of Chinatown and in the heart of many of the city’s housing projects, median household income is only $29,554.
Despite the disturbing picture of inequality these graphs paint, and I’d recommend tooling around the page yourself, one countervailing fact must be pointed out: cities that lack effective public transportation entrench poverty to a much greater extent than do cities like New York, where 98 percent of the population lives in neighborhoods where you do not need a car to get around.
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Research by neuroscientists at MIT's Picower Institute for Learning and Memory helps explain how the brain regulates arousal.
The big day has come: You are taking your road test to get your driver's license. As you start your mom's car with a stern-faced evaluator in the passenger seat, you know you'll need to be alert but not so excited that you make mistakes. Even if you are simultaneously sleep-deprived and full of nervous energy, you need your brain to moderate your level of arousal so that you do your best.
A disturbing interview given by a KGB defector in 1984 describes America of today and outlines four stages of mass brainwashing used by the KGB.
- Bezmenov described this process as "a great brainwashing" which has four basic stages.
- The first stage is called "demoralization" which takes from 15 to 20 years to achieve.
- According to the former KGB agent, that is the minimum number of years it takes to re-educate one generation of students that is normally exposed to the ideology of its country.
When these companies compete, in the current system, the people lose.
- When a company reaches the top of the ladder, they typically kick it away so that others cannot climb up on it. The aim? So that another company can't compete.
- When this phenomenon happens in the pharmaceutical world, companies quickly apply for broad protection of their patents, which can last up to 20 years, and fence off research areas for others. The result of this? They stay at the top of the ladder, at the cost of everyday people benefitting from increased competition.
- Since companies have worked out how to legally game the system, Amin argues we need to get rid of this "one size fits all" system, which treats product innovation the same as product invention. Companies should still receive an incentive for coming up with new products, he says, but not 20 years if the product is the result of "tweaking" an existing one.
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