Re: Senator, why don't you actually DO something
There are two fundamental problems with this line of thinking in relation to vehicles:
- The Manufacturers are unwilling to participate except to the level of vehicle efficiency mandated by the government. The government is not going to change the efficiency improvement levels that are already in place. And the efficiency improvements do not sufficiently address things like trucks, SUVs, and the like.
- The Consumer is not going to go for such vehicles any time soon. The average consumer is only partly interested in fuel efficiency - size and amenities in a vehicle are also very much in the consumer's mind when a purchase is being considered. Then there are the aftermarket products, such as high-rise modifications to make a truck look as though it stomp a Saturn without going into four wheel drive, or a 500-watt stereo system (which often requires an oversized alternator to power, which, in turn, requires more fuel to power). If you look at the sales ratio of truck/SUV vs. passenger vehicles, and do the math of the comparable fuel ratings based on that ratio, you'll see what I mean. People don't want nice, efficient transportation, they want the ability to intimidate the 'nice' vehicles with something nearly the size of a half-track. They also don't care that those of us who strictly walk, bicycle, or use public transportation have an equal right to the road. I do all three (and don't own a vehicle), and it can get ugly at times. How many people do you know that hop into their hummer to go to the store for a gallon of milk? Bleah.
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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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