V2V: The End of Driving . . . By You, Anyhow

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You’re going to love – or dread – this.

Vehicle to Vehicle communication – V2V, as its designers style it – is a system that will – that already is – automating new cars. Rendering them driverless. Putting the car in charge. Well, putting a wireless network in charge, that is. Of the cars – and the drivers. Who will shortly cease to exist – becoming curiosities of a bygone time, like railroad conductors.

The groundwork has already been laid. Every recent-model car has a computer. Almost all new cars have the ability to receive communication over a wireless network. The next step will be to link these cars to a grid – and to control them remotely and automatically.

That next step has been taken.

Earlier this summer, Ford showed off a new Taurus equipped with an early prototype of the V2V system. It “talked” over a wireless network to another car, avoiding a possible collision by alerting the driver to coalescing conditions (the unseen other car was about to run a red light). In this case, the driver was prompted to react by flashing lights on the windshield and a warning buzzer. V2V will eliminate the flashing lights and the buzzer – by eliminating the driver. Instead, the cars will talk among themselves as they hurtle down the road and coordinate their activities independently of the now-deadwood human occupying the left seat. When the car decides it is necessary to slow – or stop. The car will slow – or stop.

You – the ex-driver – will have no say.

Might as well take a nap.

Some drivers already do. They have cars with “adaptive” cruise control that automatically accelerates or decelerates the car to maintain the pre-programmed following distance. Or Lane Departure Warning technology that snaps addled drivers back from whatever oblivion they’re in – alerting them to the fact that their car is about to run off the road or cross the double yellow. Lexus sells cars that parallel park themselves.

People – some people –  are going to love cars that do everything for them.

This is “our next evolutionary step . . .  to make sure (a) crash never happens in the first place – which is frankly the best safety scenario we can all hope for,” says National Highway Traffic Safety Administrator David Strickland.

Italics mine.

Who’s we, David?

I, personally, hope this system never sees the light of day. But then, I am someone who likes to drive. Someone who appreciates the art – the  expression of skill – that actually driving a car involves.  Unfortunately, most people do not appreciate art. Or skill. To them, driving is a chore – and a bore. They don’t have much skill. After all, it’s not expected. Most would rather be flapping gums on dey sail fawns. And V2V will, of course, provide them with more opportunity to do so.

They, I suppose, are the we Strickland referred to. The people I refer to as Clovers. (See here for more about that – and them.)

“We think this is really the future of transportation safety (italics mine, again) and it’s going to make a huge difference in the way we live our lives,” crooned Scott Belcher of the Intelligent Transportation Society of America. The ITS has been tub-thumping for “intelligent” – read, controlled by someone other than you – cars and highways for decades.

And finally, at last, the moment is at hand.  They now “have the technology” – in the words of the old Six Million Dollar Man TV series.  It’s no longer theoretical sci-fi stuff. It is all very doable. And it will be done. In fact, this summer, 3,000 “pilot” cars equipped with a partially enabled, early version of V2V technology were put on the road in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The only thing holding back a national rollout is – wait for it, now – older cars that don’t have computers and/or the embedded technology to receive/send wireless communication.

Want to guess where this is all headed?

But why guess – when you can be told? Ron Strassburger, who is VP for safety (again, my italics)  of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers – an umbrella organization that represents (translation, lobbies) for the major automakers eructed that what’s needed is “for government to set standards.” Read: Mandates. The unfortunately eternal Clarence Ditlow of the Center for Auto Safety (yup, that word again) spells it out a bit more explicitly. “If you have the technology and the price has gone down so much, use it. You aren’t going to to get it into the marketplace as fast as you could and save as many lives (more italics mine)  as you could unless you mandate it.”

There you go. The future isn’t coming. It’s already here.

Drivers – and cars that don’t drive themselves – are on the way out.  It will be done. Because if it saves even one life… well, you know how this goes. The older stuff that requires a driver will, of course, be declared unsafe.

Then, illegal.

Cars that do not drive themselves will not be permitted to mingle amongst the cars that do. It will be regarded as an unacceptable risk, too dangerous for the safety of “our children.”

All of this has been in the works as an idea – as a control-freak wet dream – for literally decades. I can recall reading articles salivating at the prospect of taking the driver’s hands off the wheel as far back as the 1970s.  And I have always dreaded the moment, which I knew would inevitably arrive, when the technology would be ready – and enough of the public supine and passive enough to greet its arrival with a smile.

That moment is now.

Anything you’ve got in the garage that hasn’t got the necessary hardware (and software) to exist in the Brave New World of Motoring is on its way out – but not back on the road.

Rush’s red barchetta comes to mind… . Goodbye, well-weathered leather, hot metal and oil… the scent of country air.

Hello, Big Sis.

Throw it in the Woods?

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eric

Author of "Automotive Atrocities" and "Road Hogs" (MBI). Currently living amongst the Edentulites in rural SW Virginia. 

  192 comments for “V2V: The End of Driving . . . By You, Anyhow

  1. August 2, 2012 at 2:21 pm

    another great article. In an anarcho-capitalist ideal world cars that drove themselves would be available and a person would likely be able to switch modes back and forth. I commute about 15 miles each way and on occasion I wouldn’t mind leaning back and reading an article like this instead of

    but alas, we don’t have freedom so the decisions for hundreds of millions will be made by a scant few “geniuses” (douche-bags).

    red barchetta popped in my mind as well, it seems current events keep making me think of that song and witch hunt(what a great album).

    • August 2, 2012 at 2:46 pm

      instead of “mindlessly manning the steering wheel amongst clovers.” was how I intended to finish that sentence but must have accidently deleted just before posting.

      • Hot Rod
        August 2, 2012 at 8:45 pm

        There could be some advantages. The police officer would also have his steering wheel removed and accelerator removed?

        • BigDP
          August 3, 2012 at 3:04 pm

          Are you kidding me?

          The only people that will have be made to use this “technology” (control) are us mundanes. The authorities (our rulers) will still have the freedom to run you down and beat your ass as they wish.

          Oh, and they will. Just now it will be “software malfunctions” that get you a beating, not out of control cops.

          • Hot Rod
            August 3, 2012 at 4:39 pm

            Yeah I was just kidding. But your sentiments are correct. Hee hee…I think the software malfunctioning getting a beating is a pretty interesting idea. I was just thinking that if I had to live in such a Woody Allen film of the future of driverless cars I’d probably change the software so it went 90mph instead of 55mph. And it would be guaranteed that the highway speed would be lowered under one of these mandatory thoughtless systems, because there could be no revolts from idiots.

          • Hot Rod
            August 3, 2012 at 5:14 pm

            I’m thinking that the real possiblity of this technology will not be to remove the driver from the driver’s seat. But rather to give the police autonomous control over all vehicles on the road. In other words, we want you to be held responsible for all that goes wrong. But we also want the kill switch to your car. So when we your rulers decide its time for you to pull over, your car is our car and obey’s are smard grid instructions. When us rulers set the national highway speed to 45, your car obey’s us master’s over your foots instructions. However, since the shitty system can never be reliable (political boondogle) then you will be held responsible if such vehicle goes crazy and starts running over people, because you still have control over the brakes. They will never make life easier like allowing you to sleep while the car drives itself. That is not what the government ever wants, is to make your life easier. Hence why this will be automation and not robotic replacement of the human. So you’re statement of being beat for the software glitches is basically right on. Along with the fact that the highway system is nonlinear and like the Osphrey could never be fully automated, this just another case of allowing the overlords to limit our activities why holding us more accountable for their mistakes.

    • Hot Rod
      August 2, 2012 at 8:36 pm

      Great thanks for the tip that the trial runs will be held in Ann Arbor, MI. Time to get the EMP generator out that I was thinking of using just on those electronic cameras. 90 think for yourself cars end up smacking a brick wall, that would be a riot. I personally don’t like things that think for themselves. Horses are a fine example, they are fine animals to look at, but they sometimes think just a little too much when riding. I’d ride a motorcycle anyday versus get on a horses back, and a horse at least has some commonsense in self preservation something I cannot say of a computer.

      • Hot Rod
        August 2, 2012 at 8:41 pm

        Whatever happened to the Osphrey? Some fancy plane/helicopter that was so complicated it need supercomputers to tilt its motors. Last time I saw anyone talking about them about 40 marines had perished in so called landings. I have zero faith in complex solutions, seen too much to know how this will turn out. I’m going to be laughing my ass off when these cars decide to launch themselves off a cliff, the lawsuits, the politicians making excuses. Kind of like those regenerative brakes (thinking too much) that supposedly didn’t brake when you’re foot hits the pedal. Its another fukushima ready to happen mark my engineering words. This experiment will crash and burn, I’m speculating sometime in October when the first snow hits the roads.

        • Brad Smith
          August 2, 2012 at 9:35 pm

          The Marines are using it and plan on buying more. It’s an incredibly expensive toy. Of course whenever they crash now they always claim it is pilot error. They not only went far over budget, but had to lower the bar as for what it could be used for. As usual the MIC low balled the price and over rated it’s function. Not that the pentagram boys care, they love their toys.

          • August 3, 2012 at 6:32 am

            The Marines, former and current, with whom I’ve talked who’ve had any experience with the Osprey say that NO ONE they know of has ever had any use for the thing; in fact, every one of them calls it a useless death trap. It was one of those boondoggles that Congress foisted upon the Marine Corps in order to enrich some of the Head Thieves’ congressional districts. The USMC not only didn’t want the Osprey, but fought like hell to keep the thing from getting anywhere near an operational unit, knowing that it would mean the deaths of untold scores, if not hundreds of Marines. Of course the gang of kleptoplutocrats on Crapitol Hill overruled the generals and forced the Osprey down the Marine Corps’ throat. The rest, as they say, is history.

          • Hot Rod
            August 3, 2012 at 4:48 pm

            Brad and liberanter…thanks for the update. Pretty much what I suspect of a complicated solution. The problem with all this technology is that we are talking nonlinear engineering.
            Even with control feedback (engineering science) that makes the Harrier Jumper Jet work. There are some birds that just can’t fly, because the nonlinear real world results in chaotic systems. Humans (birds and animals) seem to still seem to have an edge of computers on seeing patterns and even intuition of nonlinear chaos probably because our brains are wired nonlinearly because the world is mostly nonlinear. Rothbard was right that economics cannot be a quantitative exact science because of the nonlinear aspect humans. For these same reasons when a system gets too complicated even with control feedback theory I can predict failure…failure…failure. I think there will be some progress of assisting the driver like cruise control but I’m not thinking it possible to remove the pilot. Even trains which run on tracks have operators who can through the brakes for good reason. Of course I don’t doubt that politicians in there technical stupidity won’t mandate the impossible, in which case we will get a tall order of chaos like the Osphrey.

          • Hot Rod
            August 3, 2012 at 4:52 pm

            My apologies for the bad grammar and misspelling.

        • Scott
          August 2, 2012 at 9:43 pm

          Hot Rod asks: “Whatever happened to the Osphrey?

          The Pentagon has discovered that Marines can’t fly them. So they’re buying more and looking for better Marines. No problem.

          • Scott
            August 3, 2012 at 12:01 am

            Cry little sister.
            Thou shalt not kill.

            — Gerard McMann, Michael Mainieri, 1987. “The Lost Boys”

          • Hot Rod
            August 3, 2012 at 4:57 pm

            Too funny.

          • Hot Rod
            August 3, 2012 at 4:58 pm

            I like the statement of finding better marines…No better to serve than the loud mouths in the legislative and executive who sponsor such death traps.

        • August 2, 2012 at 11:50 pm

          Re: Osprey

          I’ve been a frequent reader of this guy, Carlton Meyer, a former Marine officer.

          The masthead at his website, G2mil, is a quote:

          What someone doesn’t want you to publish is journalism, all else is publicity.
          — Paul Fussell

          He has blasted the Osprey for years.

          http://www.g2mil.com/scandal.htm

          • August 3, 2012 at 10:05 am

            Every couple of weeks, an Osprey will buzz our house. We get a fair amount of military traffic; I think the mountain ridge is a sort of practice bomb run area or some such. F/A 18s, A4s (I think they are) and those Ospreys. Once I was out cutting the grass when I heard – and felt – a thumpathumpathumpa coming fast. Looked up just in time to see an Osprey about 300 feet above the house. I could see the pilot. I’m glad he cleared the ridgeline!

          • August 3, 2012 at 10:34 am

            Dear Eric,

            Right over your house, at 300 feet?

            I feel for you.

            I hope they don’t settle on that flight path long term.

            One might say the Osprey is “Unsafe at Any Speed.” Which reminds me, where was Safety Nazi Ralph Nader when the Osprey fiasco was unfolding?

            As Carleton Meyer writes:

            “A common excuse for V-22 failures is that all new aircraft have problems. Yet the V-22 is not a new aircraft, it first flew in 1989 and the Marine Corps began receiving production aircraft in 1998. It is older than the C-17 program and plans for the final production run are in place. These new V-22s are often compared to 40-year old helicopters that should have been retired several years ago because of metal fatigue. If you owned a fleet of trucks, would you expect your newly purchased trucks to have fewer problems than your 40-year olds? Yet the V-22 has a lower readiness rate and a higher accident rate than old helicopters. This is why the Marines never deployed more than 10 V-22s to Afghanistan, favoring 40 year old CH-53D helicopters.”

          • August 3, 2012 at 11:06 am

            Yeah!

            It’s not an every day (or week or even month) thing. It’ll be quiet for weeks… even months. Then one day, you’ll hear the ozone-tearing sound of a GE turbojet – and a quick second later – whhooooooosh! – the F/18 is rocketing overhead, then gone.

            The Ospreys seem to “migrate” our way once or twice a year. They make a very distinctive noise, too. Not like an F/18 at all (of course). A heavy whumpawhumpawhumpa sound, of blades chopping the air. I have to admit – being a lover of aircraft – that I enjoy seeing the big bird fly so close overhead.

            Still, on my Rich List is a refurbished Me262 (see here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BaUZBqwRnYw )

            Or an He-162 Volksjager:

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V5R0W5c3uHQ

            I admit to an affection for Nazi airplanes!

          • August 3, 2012 at 11:44 am

            Done my share of blasting of the Osprey too, some here; http://www.libertyguys.org/2010/07/marine-killing-v-22-osprey-aircraft-sent-to-iraq-2007/
            The CH-53D is a modernized, composite-airframe rebuild of the 40-year-old Chinook. It may have the silhouette of a 40-year-old helicopter, and yes, it is slightly slower than the Osprey in airplane mode, but it has moden avionics, crew safety, and, most important – actually carries heavy weapons, a feature still not yet available on the far-pricier Osprey.

          • August 3, 2012 at 11:58 am

            Dear Liberty Vini,

            “Except this transformer also turns into, with alarming frequency, a flaming pile of twisted metal splintered carbon fiber and dead Marines.”

            Yup.

            Probably two groups of people love the Osprey to death and want the program to continue into the future, ad infinitum.

            One. Beneficiaries of Osprey earmarked Pentagon pork.

            Two. The US Imperium’s military rivals.

          • Hot Rod
            August 3, 2012 at 5:35 pm

            Hi Eric,

            I had no idea that they even had that kind of success, thanks for the info about seeing them personally. Beings you see them fly means that some progress was made from where I turned off my radar.

            My guess is they are unreliable at best and deadly at worst. I realize that the helicopter though is really not much better. Every month I read about some flight for life helicopter with a 30+ year veteran pilot dropping out of the sky. During the Iraq war I tallied up the soldier fatalaties from helicopter crashes, I think nearly 40% of them were helicopter related. I’d never take a ride in a helicopter unless it was a flight for life and then why not I guess try for a risky solution if the costs are high for any other alternative. Helicopters are very complex and very faulty mechanically. But even the helicopter can fly without unnecessary control feedback loops, humans did so in the beginning although with more errors. Now add the Osphrey and we get the same complicated mechanics as a helicopter along with feedback loops that can error with strange gusts of winds as pertubations, engineers just cannot predict all the strange nonlinear behaviors of air and keep the strange bird stable at all times. There is just no way that these things can be stable under all conditions except the most pristine conditions.

            Still not to dilute the smartness of the engineers who can make a washing machine fly. So sad such good talent goes to such waste.

            BTW love the article Eric.

          • August 3, 2012 at 5:41 pm

            Thanks, HR!

          • Hot Rod
            August 3, 2012 at 6:16 pm

            Eric,

            I’m amazed with how much new material you come up with. You’re quite the enigma and surprise, makes visiting your site a lot of fun.

            Also wanted to say there is nonlinear control feedback theory, through estimation, state control feedback and linearizing error over small nonlinear signals it’s theoretical possible to make nonlinear systems stable. Although I personally would never want to soar 100 feet off the ground in such a system much less sleep in a car going 55mph guided by such a system. I guess my problem is not what is expected that they can control and stabilize, but rather what variables they don’t expect. Men are essentially software builders, they throw a complicated POS together and then have to debug the hell out of it to get it even partly reliable. The oops factor of I didn’t think of that variable (initially) is too large in complicated systems. Then you got the blame game, whenever an Osphrey goes down for example the company finds it easier to blame the pilot than figure out that one last bug that keeps killing people. I hate complex systems that have irreversible liability. Fukushima is an example, Diesel generators that got flooded and no one thought of a tsunami doing such a thing, yet it did. The best engineering designs are ones that start simple, and then you add engineering sciences to clean them up.

            The more linear to start the better, than you are talking 6 sigma design after the sciences and engineering are used to clean it up. My argument against all VTOL, is they suck. Yeah the helicopter is needed, its a passing phase. So is rockets. There is a much simpler form of propulsion for lift and we all know it exists through symmetry of electromagnetics and then seeing the missing symmetry of equations that would explain gravity as a field. All these air propulsion technologies (except the plane) will be dead when that arrives (if whoever understands it even feels compelled to tell anyone). Personally, I don’t think governments deserve it as for most humans. But for now we can use helicopters which although still a nightmare serve VTOL. Why add another level of complexity like the Osprey? Same with the road system, people are much more rational than a computer will be in our lifetime. Thats a scary statement in itself but still the truth.

            My humble opinions of course.

        • August 3, 2012 at 6:20 am

          We’re forgetting, the political-economic purpose of war is to soak up surplus production, to keep alive the conditions under which local artisanal manufacturing is “impractical”.

          • August 3, 2012 at 11:45 am

            The biggest problem, and what will ultimately doom V2V is our crumbling infrastructure.

          • August 3, 2012 at 11:50 am

            Vini, we’re dealing with Keynesians here. All they need is a politically correct pretext for massive public investment.

          • August 3, 2012 at 12:18 pm

            Dear Liberty Vini, Ned,

            “The biggest problem, and what will ultimately doom V2V is our crumbling infrastructure.”

            The US infrastructure is of course crumbling as a result of our Keynesian “free lunch” economics.

            It is going to go the way of those dreary old government housing blocks in Siberia.

            Many of us have already cited Detroit.

            Without more money coming in than going out, that is the eminently predictable fate of the USSA. It’s not rocket science.

        • Brad Smith
          August 3, 2012 at 5:11 pm

          Dear, Hot Rod. You’re Welcome. You can also find some interesting reading material regarding Chaos Theory on Mises. I think that was what you were referring to.

          It would also be interesting to see what Chaos Theorists would think of letting cars drive themselves. I’m guessing that they would predict that it would eventually fall apart, much like attempting to manage the economy, that is after all full of individual minds.

          The center cannot hold.

      • harry p.
        August 3, 2012 at 6:32 pm

        Your horse example is spot-on. I have ridden dirtbikes and sport bikes for a while but when we were on our honeymoon in St Lucia a few years back we went horseback riding. Right away, he took off from the back to the front so he could be next to his brother, from that point on we hated each other. Found out later the guide assumed I had more riding experience than the rest of the group just by looking at me (I had none) and gave me the most “independent” of the horses.
        Ever since that day I have a deep seeded hate for horses. They have a mind of their own and can contradict you when they choose, not fun at all.

        That must be why our overlords hate us too…

        • Dan
          August 3, 2012 at 8:38 pm

          Yes…Some of the more delusional elitist maggots actually entertain the idea that conscious freewill does not really exist. I had a conversation with a liberal parasite (GWOoUuD it is PAINFUL!) and she thought that freewill was the worst trait of humans…meaning…People can choose NOT TO LIVE FOR HER! She basically said “Live for me, or die”.

          I *hate* humanoid parasites…Filthy fucking collectivist tribal chimps who claim to own me.

          • methylamine
            August 3, 2012 at 11:09 pm

            YES this recent pseudo-scientific argument that we don’t have free will drives me up a wall!

            And it’s idiotic. Anyone with a modicum of understanding of how neurons work, and how the brain stitches them together, can see that its function is about as deterministic as a herd of cats in a field of catnip. It’s about the most chaotic, random thing in the universe–and yet, order (from time to time) proceeds from it.

            It’s just about miraculous. But deterministic? A linear computer? Not even CLOSE.

            In fact there’s good evidence that it operates on a quantum level–which, to the best of our current knowledge, gives rise to the most random of all outcomes.

            I smell an Elite meme percolating with the whole “no free will” argument. It’s another attempt to reduce us to animals to be bred, raised, sheered, and slaughtered at will.

          • Alex ++
            August 4, 2012 at 11:21 am

            The worst control freaks are the feminists. At first they were on the whole “Women need men like a fish needs a bicycle” kick, now they’re pissed off and raising hell that men are not marrying women, when the women hear their bio clock ticking and want to settle down.

            Marriage is a horrible deal for men due to current laws that will send a man into poverty and take his kids from him, yet every week you see some article trying to shame men into doing what women want, and turning over their wallets. Modern day slavery.

            I’ll even go further – men want freedom and excitement, women safety and government support. Schemes like this V2V, and the manginas pushing for it are just another bullet to the testicles. What’s the use of driving if you have no control? Might as well take a bus.

          • August 4, 2012 at 11:48 am

            Alex,

            I definitely agree that US society has been feminized – or rather, de-masculinized. From doping little boys for behaving like little boys – to the emasculation that occurs in the workplace and almost everywhere else. It’s not easy to be a man in this society, that’s for sure!

          • JdL
            August 7, 2012 at 3:23 pm

            Marriage is a horrible deal for men due to current laws that will send a man into poverty and take his kids from him.

            Yep! Been there, done that myself. I recommend to young men: DON’T have kids. Get married if you want; without kids it’s easy enough to split up with a woman who has transformed into a bitch. And luckily alimony is getting less common.

          • Dan
            August 7, 2012 at 7:37 pm

            Marriage is a relic of the Dark Ages where men claimed Property Title on women…What goes around, comes around. Marriage is a primitive concept for the weak and lifeless dullards to feel good about themselves. Like Religion.

    • August 3, 2012 at 6:40 am

      In a Mutualist ideal world a handful of geeks would build cars that drove themselves purely for the fun of getting it to work, and possibly for practical jokes. A much larger number of enthusiast motorists would drive cars that do virtually nothing automatically, because the joy of direct mechanical control is the reason they were built. There would be a few service vehicles, i.e. a lot of villagers might chip in and have a first-strike pump appliance built. And most people wouldn’t drive anything at all, because they wouldn’t need to and don’t care one way or the other.

      They wouldn’t have to be all over the roads to ensure artificial demand for vehicles, fuel, and road construction.

      • August 3, 2012 at 11:24 am

        Dear Ned,

        Maybe, just maybe, if the clovers wind up sitting passively in robocars in the slow lane, it would finally get them out of our hair and open up the passing lane for real drivers?

        (long beat)

        Naaaaa!

        • August 3, 2012 at 11:30 am

          I can see this doubling traffic or more, as cars become capable of driving themselves back to where they came from, or of endlessly circling while parking is unavailable; and as this capability makes trips viable that would otherwise just have been too much of a ball-ache. It gets rid of traffic as a traffic-deterrent.

          This is brilliant, really, in a twisted, rool-ze-vurld sort of way.

          • August 3, 2012 at 11:49 am

            Dear Ned,

            The old argument for “robocars” has always been reduced following distances and increased traffic density.

            Technologically it wouldn’t necessarily preclude self driven vehicles.

            I would guess that the real deciding factor would be politics. Would the world then be a market oriented world, or statist oriented world?

            That depends on mankind’s political evolution. I think the technology is more the effect than the cause.

        • August 3, 2012 at 11:40 am

          Hell no – because the Clovers would never allow it!

          That’s the key thing: Clovers can’t stand it that others act in any way (or be allowed to act in any way) that isn’t scripted, controlled and dictated by Clovers, according to the Clovers’ notion of what’s best.

          We are content to do our thing – and leave others free to do theirs.

          Clover can’t abide such a conception. Everyone else must do as Clover says – or else.

          • August 3, 2012 at 12:54 pm

            Dear Eric,

            More and more I have become convinced that “clover psycho-pathology” is not merely literary license, but a clinical diagnosis.

            The only reason mainstream society fails to recognize this, is that mainstream society consists largely of clovers who vet each others’ psycho-pathology.

            Clover A looks at Clover B and says, “Nothing wrong with you. You’re normal.” Clover B looks at Clover A and says the same thing.

            Clovers are nothing if not believers in democracy and majority rule. The result of their democratically arrived at majority decision?

            Why, it’s that clovers are normal, but libertarians who demand human rights and individual liberty are tinfoil hat nutjobs
            who need to “Go get some mental help!”

            So, Eric, “have you went for mental help yet?”

          • methylamine
            August 3, 2012 at 11:11 pm

            @Bevin–I think you’re right on target. In fact Political Ponerology describes the phenomenon of normal-but-weak-minded people being recruited to evil by the 2-4% who are true sociopaths.

            They’re content to go with the wind; but as the sociopaths gain power, the weak fall in behind them.

          • August 4, 2012 at 1:20 am

            Dear Methylamine,

            I had to Google “ponerology.” The study of evil.

            But am I glad I did. I had no idea anyone had already made a detailed study of this. Thanks for calling my attention to it.

            Look at this passage. It just about says it all!

            “Łobaczewski defines many specific characteropathies, which Western psychology would likely refer to as character disorders, as paving the way for the ultimate rule of “essential psychopaths” in full-fledged pathocracy. This allegedly takes place when society is insufficiently guarded against the minority of such abnormal pathology ever-present in its midst. He believes that they infiltrate an institution or state, prevailing moral values are perverted into their opposite, and a coded language not unlike Orwell’s doublethink circulates into the mainstream, using paralogic and paramoralism in place of genuine logic and morality.”

            That is so dead on I’m laughing out loud. And don’t you just love the term “pathocracy?” I’m going to start using it.

            I was just winging it based on what Eric and others were saying about Clovers being psychopaths.

            As a thought experiment I started taking it as a literal statement and not mere metaphor. To my surprise it actually stuck.

            Goes to show that human intuition is often more highly attuned to what’s going on than the human intellect.

          • August 4, 2012 at 3:54 am

            Dear Methylamine,

            You really put me on to something with the subject of “ponerology.”

            Here’s a quote from Laura Knight-Jadczyk,
            one of the two editors of Lobaczewski’s book, speaking on the author’s behalf, because he was deathly ill.

            Laura Knight-Jadczyk:

            As Łobaczewski points out, if a psychopath considers himself normal, which is of course significantly easier if he possesses authority, then he would consider a normal person different and therefore abnormal. A normal person’s actions and reactions, his ideas and moral criteria, strike psychopaths as abnormal. A normal person strikes a psychopath as a naive, smart-alecky believer in barely comprehensible theories about love and honor and conscience; calling him “crazy” is not all that far away.That explains why pathological governments always have considered dissidents as “mentally abnormal”.

            The legal system is not set up to deal with this because, of course, the legal system is often a creation of pathological individuals, or at least administered by them. Well – thought out legislation should require scientific testing of individuals whose claims that someone else is psychologically abnormal are too insistent or too doubtfully founded.

            Bevin: Recall Clover ranting that Brent needs to seek “mental help?” Is that dead on or is that dead on?

            http://www.sott.net/articles/show/148141-The-Trick-%20of-the-Psychopath-s-Trade-Make-Us-Believe-that-Evil-Comes-from-Others

          • August 4, 2012 at 10:17 am

            Dead on.

            Consider: People who merely wish to be left alone (the colloquial way of elaborating the Libertarian/anarchist ideal) are regarded as “selfish” and “mean-spirited” – and much worse besides – by people who cannot stop thinking of new ways to control others by force; who are constitutionally incapable of leaving their fellow men alone.

            Clover is the archetype – hence my use of the term.

            The entire system is predicated on Cloverite abnormal psychology. On violence, oppression, coercion and threats. Forced association; collective guilt. Prior restraint. The “safety” and “security” shibboleths … throughout history, the siren song of Clovers.

            Someone like Clover not only cannot conceive of a society in which “no harm, no foul” – he violently loathes the very idea of it.

  2. August 2, 2012 at 3:24 pm

    I’m pretty sure it’s well weathered leather…hot metal and oil…the scent of country air

  3. August 2, 2012 at 3:57 pm

    “Every recent-model car has a computer. Almost all new cars have the ability to receive communication over a wireless network. The next step will be to link these cars to a grid – and to control them remotely and automatically.”

    But not even the newest 2012 cars have the hardware to respond to that wireless communication, so that they can be completely operated by some external system. And adding that hardware would be a difficult, costly, near impossible retrofit.

    So before this tyrant’s dream can be realized, virtually every car on the road will have to be replaced. Perhaps you haven’t noticed, but the world, including America, is heading an economic crash/mega depression. The financial capacity to replace every current car with a brand new one simply Does Not Exist……not any time in the next 20 years.

    Doubtlessly, the statists would love to impose such control “tomorrow.”

    But to say the “time is at hand” for this particular nightmare is simply Not True….for reasons beyond the dictators’ control.

    • Ed
      August 3, 2012 at 3:53 pm

      “So before this tyrant’s dream can be realized, virtually every car on the road will have to be replaced. Perhaps you haven’t noticed, but the world, including America, is heading an economic crash/mega depression. The financial capacity to replace every current car with a brand new one simply Does Not Exist……not any time in the next 20 years.”

      Ahhh, but….maybe the whole idea is to get 99% of cars off the roads. Envision this scenario: V2V equipped cars become mandated, first for interstates, with the mandate for secondary roads scheduled a few years in the future. Only new, V2V controlled cars are allowed on the interstates and local beltways.

      Individual commuters will have to take secondary roads to work, with all the traffic slowdowns and gridlock that would cause. This would force many to buy the new super expensive cars and take out 30 year loans to pay for them.

      The rollout of the secondary road mandate would sweep older, driver controlled cars off the secondaries, allowing only rural road travel for human drivers.

      In just a few years, the hive mind’s goal of mandatory public transportation travel could be instituted. After all, very few people could afford a 30 year mortgage on a house and a car at the same time.

      Never mind that there won’t be a public transportation system in place to handle suburb/rural-to-urban commuting. The pretext for building total public transportation will be solidly in place and the building could begin.

      Naturally, the economic collapse would be accelerated to the point that omniscient government would “have to” take over everything.

      Could that be the plan?

  4. mikehell
    August 2, 2012 at 4:18 pm

    The scary thing is that V2V may actually be a smarter or a better driver that lots of the fools on the road.

  5. Scott
    August 2, 2012 at 4:56 pm

    I’ve got to agree with Mike; no matter how badly they want it, it ain’t happening in my lifetime.

    The way I see this gaining traction is on freeways in densely populated areas, it’ll replace carpool lanes. A properly equipped car will be allowed on specially designated lanes. How they’ll keep regular cars out of them is beyond me but I could come up with a few ideas.

    This technology won’t ever work on the roads I enjoy driving. Frankly, if I could turn on an autopilot as soon as I hit the nearest 8 lane freeway I’d do it. I’ve made way too many trips from CA to WY and back on US 80 to be able to say it’s a unique and memorable experience. I actually *enjoy* sleeping through Battle Mountain Nevada when I can get my wife to drive. But I have no fear at all this technology will be coming to Highway 1 anytime soon.

  6. BrentP
    August 2, 2012 at 5:42 pm

    Will this level of control really come in slowly and peacefully… I go back and forth on it.

    Right now, in this moment, I see automated cars being part of the order that comes after chaos. That is after the existing system is destroyed (intentionally) by war, disease, and poverty. Our existing cars, shells pulled by horses if that. When the new order rises from the ashes we won’t even be riding in the automated cars. Serfs aren’t allowed to travel.

    We will be lucky if we are allowed to live in the underground cities… or live at all.

    http://farm3.staticflickr.com/2722/4083172813_d27a24b3ab.jpg

    (Image from “Things to Come”)

    • mikehell
      August 2, 2012 at 5:53 pm

      Brent, I take it you haven’t yet read “The Rational Optimist”? :-)

    • Scott
      August 2, 2012 at 8:22 pm

      But Brent? It’s so pretty…

    • August 3, 2012 at 4:46 am

      Dear Brent,

      Ah! “Things to Come.” At one time, I thought that movie was so great.

      This was before I understood the politics behind it. HG Wells was a great SF writer. But he was a “scientific socialist” who erroneously believed the alternative to the monopolistic state would be primitive warlordism.

      In this respect, he was remarkably like Ayn Rand and the Orthodox Objectivists.

      I was impressed by the futuristic architecture and urban landscapes. I have always been fascinated with visions of a sleek high tech future.

      Of course there is nothing wrong with a sleek high tech future that is not centrally planned by Big Brother. I’m pretty sure that a market anarchist future would include cityscapes that look pretty similar to those in “Things to Come.”

      • BrentP
        August 3, 2012 at 5:05 am

        I took a science fiction class taught by Leon Stover, a well known HG Wells scholar. He wrote the book on this movie. I should have kept that book. Anyway my view of what I learned in that class has changed as world events show me it was telling us the plan. War and disease followed by the new order. They are a little late. But that’s what they keep pushing. Keep using on us. War and disease.

        • August 3, 2012 at 11:15 am

          Dear Brent,

          It would be one thing if “scientific socialism” actually panned out. If socialism actually promoted science.

          But as we now know only too well, socialism has produced only anti-scientific quackery.

          Boondoggles include:

          Unproven claims of man-made global warming. Green technology that pollutes worse than older, more “primitive” technology. Health information that has made people obese and diabetic. Space shuttles that blow up with such frequency they have to be scrapped.

          No. Wells to the contrary notwithstanding, socialism turned out to be anything but “scientific.”

          • BrentP
            August 3, 2012 at 3:19 pm

            The difference is interpretation. Was it promotion or warning?

            I think the latter, as most stories did not end with a happy utopia.

  7. Tim
    August 2, 2012 at 5:43 pm

    The Antiplanner, http://ti.org/antiplanner/, has been singing the praises of driver-less cars for years. He is a great source for information on government spending. But I too don’t wish to see my position as driver eliminated. I like to drive, when there are few other cars and the speed limits are more like…suggestions.

  8. August 2, 2012 at 6:02 pm

    As an information systems security engineer, I can see this “communication over a wireless network … to control the[ cars] remotely and automatically…” being a black hat hacker’s wettest wet dream come true. Given the ABOMINABLE (read: non-existent) quality of software integrity and security in today’s computerized car systems, a quality that will NOT go away any time soon (if you have no processes, tools, or standards in place for locking down your source code, you cannot develop and implement robust programs until you’ve vetted the effectiveness of any processes and tools that you adopt, a lengthy and time-consuming process), this is just asking for catastrophe.

    My experience of nearly 20 years has been that even the best of information grids (a.k.a. “systems of systems”) is usually carelessly architectured, with “bolted-on” security features being the rule rather than their being built-in to the overall system architecture from day one; bug-laden, ill-administered, and erratically maintained.

    n addition to above concerns, the following crucial questions come to mind.

    – Who will have ultimate ownership of the “grid” that will control these clovermobiles?

    – Who will have responsibility for maintaining its security posture? Using what tools and standards? As anyone with a graduate degree in information technology security will tell you, there is no such thing as a “hack-proof” system, even one with the best, most state-of-the-art security features in place.

    – Has anyone thought of contingency plan for if (no, WHEN) this “grid” gets hijacked and compromised?

    Again, using the past as reference, I say that anyone who answers the last question with “yes, of course” is sufficiently full of shit to earn the nickname “Cesspool.” Bottom line: security is an afterthought, at best, in 99 percent of all system design programs.

    Stand by for some horrendous traffic carnage as this “smart” (HAH!) system is quickly owned by the next generation of black hats, organizations like Anonymous, people who LIVE to make fools out of arrogant bureau-rats like David Strickland and Scott Belcher and the organizations they front for.

    • Scott
      August 2, 2012 at 8:11 pm

      @Liberranter:

      “sufficiently full of shit to earn the nickname “Cesspool.””

      Brilliant. Just fucking brilliant :)

      • August 3, 2012 at 4:20 pm

        You can also substitute “Septic Tank” here, depending on the recipient. :)~

        • August 3, 2012 at 4:22 pm

          … or “Outhouse,” if you’re rural.

          • August 4, 2012 at 3:11 am

            Outhouse is already in use in Lookout Mountain Judicial Circuit in Georgia…

    • Libertymike
      August 3, 2012 at 12:11 pm

      @ Liberranter

      In addition to the well deserved kudos for your brilliant “sufficiently full of shit to earn the nickname ‘Cesspool'” coinage, I must salute you for providing us with “clovermobiles”. I shall be adding this to my growing, everyday usage of words paronymous with clover.

      • August 3, 2012 at 4:27 pm

        Credit for this one really should go to Eric. After all, it was he who formally defined the “Clover” concept for us. Without his brilliant coinage of that phrase, the paronyms wouldn’t exist.

        On a related note, what does everyone think of the term “clovertard?” While I’ve found the suffix “tard” to be extremely versatile and useful, I really think it’s redundant in this one case.

        • methylamine
          August 3, 2012 at 4:45 pm

          I find it useful to append strengthening suffixes in the never-ending race to chasing clover stupidity to the bottom.

          So “clovertard” is just a natural evolution, until clovers invent the next more stupid clover.

          • August 3, 2012 at 5:08 pm

            My favorite so far is Cloverstan – as in: We live in a Cloverstan; the place is full of Clovers!

    • Brad Smith
      August 3, 2012 at 4:48 pm

      Dear liberranter, I hadn’t even thought of that. Great point. The average Warez click and hacker could probably break into the system.

  9. Jim
    August 2, 2012 at 7:08 pm

    Who?? c’mon, we ALL know the answer to that one!!

  10. Brad Smith
    August 2, 2012 at 9:26 pm

    I can’t see how this could possibly work in snow and ice. Have you ever hit a patch of black ice with your cruise control still on? I can tell you for a fact I would not want a computer in control of my vehicle anytime, let alone when the roads get bad.

    • mithrandir
      August 2, 2012 at 9:45 pm

      Do not worry Brad. Our beneficent leaders have a solution. When the weather is bad (in their opinion), then the cars will be programmed to shut down and park in the nearest parking space or side of the road.

      Instead of demanding more (attention, skill) from drivers it seems that someone wants to lower the bar.

      • Brad Smith
        August 2, 2012 at 10:40 pm

        Yah that’s probably about right.

  11. methylamine
    August 3, 2012 at 1:27 am

    My rage prevents any eloquence so:

    FUCK THIS.

    I will not comply!

    Moreover, this will give me the chance to try something I’ve always wanted to build: a portable EMP device. Not so hard; a decent power supply, some capacitors, a coil, a microwave magnetron, and a horn antenna.

    See how well your F***ing self-driving car drives with an earful of microwave static!

    This really is the bitter end. I’m almost more passionate about keeping my car in my hands than my guns; it certainly brings me more pleasure.

    Eric I couldn’t agree more; driving is a pleasure, even in traffic. I take pride in watching many cars ahead, slipping smoothly into gaps causing no consternation to others while briskly proceeding forward. Every drive has its own little moments; I have a few spots in each commute where I can open it up a little, a corner I try harder on each time, bumps I know to avoid…

    On my last job, the commute took me against traffic on a lightly-used toll road. I routinely hit 150 on the way to work–THAT, friends, is better than any cup of java…the sound of a BMW V-8 at peak horsepower, 6600 rpm…delicious!

    • August 3, 2012 at 6:39 am

      See how well your F***ing self-driving car drives with an earful of microwave static!

      You hit the nail on the head right there. The wireless spectrum is limited and relatively narrow, so the introduction of spectral interference, especially the undoubtedly narrow band that will be used to control this notional grid, wouldn’t be difficult at all. Even the most secure of wireless transmissions can still be disrupted in this way.

      • phil
        August 3, 2012 at 2:39 pm

        Central remote control would not be required. Stand alone cars, with updates at every state inspection, would limit the reach of any hacker. Even further, driving on our current roads requires a great deal of immediate information as to where you and nearby possibly untagged non-automobile objects and roads are. None of that would be practical to remote dictate.

        All of this, until the police demand a kill switch for any car and open up the pandora’s box for remote reprogramming.

        • BrentP
          August 3, 2012 at 3:30 pm

          Phil, there is almost always a way to have a technology independent and distributed, but that is never the way government chooses, and rarely the way a corporation chooses.

          People are conditioned into authoritarian pyramid organization schemes so they choose them even if they aren’t seeking power. To achieve more profit such things are the first thing that comes to mind even when the counter-intuitive distributed model would be more profitable in the long run.

          Centralized systems have failed over and over and over again both in government and market but still it is what people by and large choose.

          So yes, self driving cars can exist independently and with people driven cars, it just isn’t very likely to happen that way.

      • Al Sledge
        August 4, 2012 at 1:28 am

        As the frequency spectrum is now gunverment allocated, it is somewhat limited. It can be changed, and has changed over the years. The frequency spectrum itself however is actually unlimited, made of of real numbers, not integers. The whole thing hinges on bandwidth and range. Sort of like thinking we can max out the number of cell phones or IP addresses on the internet.

        These neo-cars could easily be worked into a mixed system with palo-cars, and I think this is more likely to come about. At least I hope so. In the aircraft biz, many planes are auto takeoff/cruise/landing and work well with piloted small planes. Of course they way things are looking, we will be lucky to eat, let alone have a car if the political Clovers have their way.

    • August 3, 2012 at 10:01 am

      Ditto.

      I was reduced to bubbling fury when I got the backgrounder (they actually send me material!)

      The thing that bothers me most – as mentioned in the article – is that the technology is at least plausibly within reach. See, for example, the Google car. The majors (GM, etc.) are working assiduously on similar machines.

      I may be paranoid, but it strikes me as convenient that elements of the necessary software and hardware are already being incorporated into cars; that people are being conditioned (as with sail fawns) to desire the “latest technology” and to believe they can’t exist without it. How long, for instance, before a feature such as the currently available Lexus self-park system becomes a de facto standard in all new cars – just like push-button/keyless ignition? How long before it is mandated – for “safety” – just like back-up cameras?

      Am I paranoid?

      Or do I see too clearly – based on bitter past experiences?

      • August 3, 2012 at 11:03 am

        Dear Eric,

        I only wish you were being paranoid.

        Unfortunately you are not. If anything, such measures to control motor vehicles is small potatoes.

        Microchips for pets are becoming mandatory under certain regimes.

        How long do you think it will be before the Clovers demand mandatory “lojack” style microchip implants for people?

        How much of a logical leap is it from mandatory IDs, police checkpoints, nationwide video surveillance with facial recognition software?

        Ideas have consequences.

        The consequence of a failure to assert the sovereignty of the individual, is to imply the sovereignty of the State. It is to affirm that the State trumps the individual, that the State owns the individual, and that the State may do as it sees fit to the individual.

        The rest is merely a matter of time.

        Sheeple dismiss such cause and effect relationships between ideas and consequences as “paranoia,” because they are already hooked into The Matrix.

      • Dan M.
        August 3, 2012 at 11:31 am

        Nope, Eric, you’re not being paranoid by a long shot. I fear that the ultimate goal with all of this is to gradually phase out the skill of operating a motor vehicle. I can envision a day when only “authorities” will have vehicles that can be driven manually.

        Tyrants don’t like mobility and they sure as hell don’t like independence. Why do you think the do gooders are always shoving ever more elaborate means of mass transit down our throats? Somehow I don’t buy that it’s just about air pollution.

        The very idea that the “transportation grid” could be shut down with all automated vehicles being suddenly brought to a screeching halt for “security” or “safety” reasons must be the wet dream of some useless bureaucrat somewhere.

        • August 3, 2012 at 11:37 am

          Agreed… unfortunately.

          My fantasy is stumbling upon an alien spacecraft with faster-than-light drive stored away in a cave on our land. A current era Mayflower, if you like. An escape pod to somewhere better; another Earth, far away. As Jimi put it: There must be some kind of way outta here….

          • August 3, 2012 at 12:08 pm

            Dear Eric,

            I’ve been on Taiwan since the early 90s, so I’ve fallen way behind on tracking popular culture in the US.

            Recently I’ve been catching up by watching old TV series on video, including episodes of Stargate SG-1.

            What I wouldn’t give to dig up a Stargate on my land (if I had any) and teleport to another G Type planet.

            No more IRS. No more TSA. No more costumed thugs with guns to kidnap you and lock you in a cage for any excuse they care to cite.

        • August 3, 2012 at 11:41 am

          Dan, tyrants do like mobility as long as we need more of it than we’ve got. They want to keep us on a treadmill. It helps to keep the treadmill bearing factories going …

    • August 3, 2012 at 10:47 am

      Beautiful, Meth!

      Just this morning I posted a comment on C4SS to the effect that hot-rodding is a bona-fide agorist counter-economic activity. All kinds of possibilities open up for black-market stealth motoring. How about an electronic phantom vehicle generator that has nothing to do with the physical car one is driving?

      • methylamine
        August 3, 2012 at 2:31 pm

        OOH I like that–projecting cars at will, teleporting yours where it’s not.

        The hacker possibilities are endless…seems I switched to the right profession after all!

        Fortunately I think this one will take decades of hammering away at the sheeple before it’s adopted…and by then, I firmly believe the NWO will have failed and America will either have a Republic again, or states/groups of states will have theirs–and have told Mordor on the Potomac to go screw themselves.

        • Curtis
          August 4, 2012 at 12:45 am

          All you have to do is build a cheap radio frequency generator that operates in the range of the TPMS and that will slow everything to a crawl. Everytime my we drive my wife’s car past a truckstop, the TPMS indicator comes and you then have to shutdown to get it to reset. The dealer tested it and hi-power cb amps will get the indicator all worked up!

  12. Tinsley Grey Sammons
    August 3, 2012 at 1:47 am

    If “they” want to do something worthwhile why not build the monorails and high speed trains they should have started building fifty years ago?

    The skies are so crowded now, the next disaster involving passenger aircraft is something just waiting to happen.

    Malthus was right and so was Asimov.

    tgsam

    • August 3, 2012 at 10:53 am

      The problem is not modal choice but cheap transcontinental distribution as such – made possible by State programmes to create the conditions for business structures to gravitate towards the oligopolistic.

      • August 3, 2012 at 10:55 am

        It is that which has inverted the economic meaning of “all the way from China” from rare and precious to common and cheap.

        • Libertymike
          August 3, 2012 at 12:17 pm

          @ Tinsley –

          Malthus was right?

          If he was right, who needs wrong?

          • Libertymike
            August 3, 2012 at 12:18 pm

            The problem with any kind of mass transit is the word modifying transit.

  13. Buddy
    August 3, 2012 at 3:04 am

    I like this idea as long it’s a black Trans Am and answers to kitt. I love my tech but I like to be the one in control of it.

    • August 3, 2012 at 10:57 am

      Not to mention serious suspension hydraulics with a pump driven by an exhaust turbine …

      • methylamine
        August 3, 2012 at 2:33 pm

        Don’t forget gun pods and radar-seeking missile-launcher fog lamps.

        And lasers.

        Can’t a nice car have lasers too?

        • August 3, 2012 at 5:19 pm

          For decades I’ve fantasized about having a car equipped with 30mm machine guns and short-range surface-to-surface missiles, both aiming fore and aft, to take care of roadclovers.

          Oh, and don’t forget the radar/radio jammer pods and license plate shields to throw nosy pork off your trail…

  14. Brad Smith
    August 3, 2012 at 4:06 am

    Just another off the wall point that I would like to make. I still prefer a manual transmission, especially if I get stuck. Rocking a car or truck with a clutch is much more functional. Also, back to adverse driving conditions, a manual is better. I prefer to be able to use the clutch. In an auto you have the choice of hitting the breaks, (not generally a good idea) or shifting into neutral, not much better. Simply pushing in the clutch and drifting until you need to give it gas can save your life, or at least keep you out of the ditch. Downshifting is also more effective with a clutch because you can feel it and make any adjustment needed.

    Automatic transmissions seem to be a better fit for people who don’t care to actually learn how to drive, or for the convenience in stop and go traffic.

    I guess this only applies to this topic if you consider that a computer would be set up with an automatic, which in my opinion is inferior in regards to skilled drivers in adverse conditions.

    • Libertymike
      August 3, 2012 at 12:35 pm

      Not off the wall, at all.

      No question, for moi, driving with a stick is usually more enjoyable, with the operative word being usually.

      An automatic, however, is far more practical for long distance motoring. From time to time, business takes me to Pennsylvania, Virginia and Florida (I’m a Masshole) and not being a fan of the airport Cloverpoolooza, I choose to drive.

      In August of 2001, I drove home my wife’s VW Passat from Atlantic City in 100 degree heat – leaving Atlantic City at about 12 noon. Do ya think I sat through some traffic? What a chore to drive a stick under those conditions!

      • mithrandir
        August 3, 2012 at 3:16 pm

        Regarding manual on long trips.

        If I will be on the highways, then a manual is identical to an automatic when I get to cruising speed.

        Although no help now, I sometimes try to get some alternate routes just in case. A road map is useful for me as well. GPS is not bad, but for me it is only good for seeing roads in my immediate area.

        From AC to northern NJ:
        an alternate to GSP:
        exit 58 to 539 North to I-195 West to NJTP north to exit 11 (GSP north) to NY state line.

      • Ed
        August 3, 2012 at 4:07 pm

        “What a chore to drive a stick under those conditions!”

        True, that indeed. Reading that line I immediately got a mental image of being in the stretch of I95 between Woodbridge and Fredericksburg between 3pm and 7pm on any weekday. A clutch assembly would wear out in a week of commuting.

      • Brad Smith
        August 3, 2012 at 4:39 pm

        I hear you. I rarely drive on the expressway or in the city. However, when I do I actually prefer an auto. For instance driving down to Detroit. There is so much road work going on that it’s often stop and go. Then once in the city it’s just as bad or worse. However, for in the country I much prefer a manual.

        I will say that front wheel drive on a car is nice in the snow. I have had a few rear wheel drive pickups that were a menace if you didn’t add about five hundred pounds of something in the back. (like a snowmobile or sand bags)

    • August 3, 2012 at 12:58 pm

      Dear Brad, Liberty Mike,

      Actually when the clovers forcibly hook us up to The Matrix, we won’t have to drive anywhere in physical space.

      We can drive anywhere we want in virtual reality, in cyberspace, like in the two Matrix sequels.

      Won’t that be nice?

      • Brad Smith
        August 3, 2012 at 1:40 pm

        Dear, Bevin. How do we know that we aren’t already hooked up?

        • August 3, 2012 at 2:03 pm

          Dear Brad,

          Because if I was hooked up to The Matrix, I would

          1. Not be paying income taxes every April Fool’s Day, and

          2. The Woman in Red would be my girlfriend

          LOL.

  15. Michael T Doyle
    August 3, 2012 at 5:15 am

    Think about this freinds. You get in your car and ask it to take you to work. In it’s power up proceedure it automatically checks you for outstanding warrants. Looooky heeere, an unpaid parking ticket. It graciously calls your boss for you and tells him you won’t be coming to work today, cause it’s hauling your ass to jail! Talk about a control freak’s wet dream, every car in amerika is now a police car!

  16. Douglas
    August 3, 2012 at 9:49 am

    It’s not the self-driving car that I fear so much as the “Gubmint”-sponsored boondoggle that will come about due to the cause celebre of “safety”, especially “for the children”. More of Hillary’s (the top village idiot) maxim about “it takes a village…” and every liberal wet dream that proceedeth forth. Something market-driven could be employed where it’s actually USEFUL. I’ve done the I-80 betwixt Sacto and Salt Lake enough that, yes, if the car drives itself, I could “surrender” control and just kick back. But that should be a CHOICE.
    As others have pointed out, the technical challenges alone are formidable, and it’d take a few generations for even a system limited to the major interstates to become de rigeur. Since I’m 53 now, if by that time I can still drive for extended periods, it’ll be a problem to have…
    As a practical matter, though, we’ve already surrendered control over our cars to computers and to a great extent government-mandated systems that contribute little, if anything, to performance and/or longevity. And who can say that the technology doesn’t already exist to have your late model ride “tattle” your comings and goings? Rather than actual guidance, I can see where this will likely lead NLT 2025:

    1) Your vehicle will have a full-time GPS link and will be required to send telemetry as to destination and, of course, speed. Won’t even need to have “Smokey” sneak up behind you, turn on the bubblegum machine, and pull you over and go through the dance in order for you to feed the beast with fines and penalty assessments. Any “variance” will be fed in, and citations levied as “errant” driving is noted.
    2) Come to think of it, why even ALLOW “errant” driving at all? My leased 2011 Ford Fusion already limits the vehicles top speed to 80 mph…this with a 3.5L 24-valve V6 cranking out 247 ponies. What a waste. I can forsee similar limitations, and the technology to impose a speed governor depending on the local speed limit is no stretch.
    3) In the interests of theft deterrence, I’ve little doubt that biometrics will soon be incorporated. Of course, this will give Homeland Security the ability to monitor the travel habits of everyone to the detail that would have been an erstwhile Stasi agent’s wet dream.
    4) Expect that soon the “coppers”, if engaged in a pursuit, would simply be able to punch in the car’s identity, and viola, the vehicle’s computer cuts off the engine. After a few ‘heroics’ on “Cops”, the control freaks will shut down the rides of “gun nuts”, “conspiracy theorists”, “Anti-Government agitators”, and so on…”No Fly?”. Try NO DRIVE.
    5) And lest you say, ok, I’ve kept my 1966 Beetle with an ample supply of parts and a spare engine going, so screw all this electronic and wi-fi “Nannyism”? Wrong…your “outdated” ride would be deemed either “unsafe” or a “gross polluter”. Oh, you can collect all the vintage iron you want…but DRIVE IT? Perish the thought…along with your Civil rights.

    It’s not technology that’s the problem. It’s like the idiots that blame the Internet for moral decay because one-third of all the bandwidth is being used for porn. It’s never the technology, it’s the application. Innovations that the consumer WANTS will stick due to market forces. Those of dubious merit will fall by the wayside. It’s the same reason that we should want to keep the Government the hell out of healthcare, it’s already, thanks to Champus, Tri-Care, and, of course, Medicare, way more involved to the detriment of patients and doctors alike. It’s gotten to the point that my stash of 60mg Sudafed could be construed as conspiracy to manufacture meth, rather than Doug’s effort to ensure a lifetime of the ability to unplug stuffy noses for he and his clan. I suppose that once I ‘retire’ and pursue being a distributor of vintage Mopar parts (as well as being a dealer in vintage Mopars themselves), I’ll be on some bureau-rats “hit list” for “enabling” the “recalcitrant” to continue with their vintage rides, rather than “comply”.

    • mithrandir
      August 3, 2012 at 3:20 pm

      Well spoken.

      It’s not technology that’s the problem. It’s like the idiots that blame the Internet for moral decay because one-third of all the bandwidth is being used for porn. It’s never the technology, it’s the application.

    • David Ward
      August 3, 2012 at 6:48 pm

      I have to agree with Doug, there will never be a driver less car. Why? Because the hamlets, towns and cities will never stand for it. They love to soak drivers of all types for more revenue. I have reached the point where I call any person associated with the goonberment, Revenuers like the old bootleggers use to do.

      What will happen will be just like Doug said, the computer will connect to the local thug scrum aka goonberment network report all infractions and your home address so a citation can be issued. All the while removing the need for the revenuer to physically address you. The former revenuer will then become the roving jailer if you have more than the allotted violations at one time. The GPS in the car will rat you out as well so you can be headed off at the pass, as they say.

      My two cents.

      David Ward

      • BrentP
        August 4, 2012 at 4:20 am

        Automated enforcement will never go to that level. It will break the system. The system functions by never/rarely ticketing clovers even though most clovers will do +X on the interstates.

        Toll transponders allow for time-distance ticketing. Not even gangster Illinois has done it yet. It will break the system. They know that too much enforcement will result in the clovers waking up to the scam. All laws have to be selectively enforced. That’s the entire basis of the system.

        • David Ward
          August 4, 2012 at 5:20 am

          BrentP,

          I beg to differ. The hamlets, towns and cities will love automated enforcement. Of course, those entities will do automated what they have been doing manually for decades, target out of town/county/state drivers for bleeding. This way the people living in x area aren’t being directly targeted unless the infraction is so blatantly onerous say 90 in a 45 zone, etc. A prime example of this is how the Shelby County, Tennessee Narc Squad sits on I-40 waiting for cars from the western states to search for drugs. The better the car the more likely you are to get searched and if the thug scrum wants your car, even if they do not find drugs, they will seize it. At that time, the owner is pretty much screwed.

          I live in Memphis, Tennessee and it is surrounded by little burbs who do nothing but target out of towners or kids. The crime in those burbs is mostly non-existant so the revenuers have nothing to do all day but issue traffic citations. All of them now have traffic cameras to increase revenue. The addition of the traitor box to your car is what they want. So the traitor box can rat you out to them so they can increase revenue to support the thug scrum in their area. This is evident in places like North Las Vegas where the thug scrum union is now suing the city because the city recently suspended their contracts because it is bankrupt. You can bet if NLV could get the traitor box made manditory for entering their city they would just to increase revenue.

          My two cents

          David Ward
          Memphis, Tennessee

        • August 4, 2012 at 10:07 am

          Unless, of course, it can be made profitable for them to do so – and also, effectively inescapable.

          Consider the push (successful) to make insurance mandatory. It is now vastly more profitable.

          Automated enforcement could easily work the same way. Perhaps not via the issuing of speeding tickets (since it would no longer be possible to speed) but how about by mere use? Each time you decide to use the vehicle, the proverbial meter starts running. This is the logical end point of congestion pricing – and I would bet you a six pack it is coming.

          • BrentP
            August 4, 2012 at 10:46 pm

            tax by the mile is already in testing.
            Because fuel taxes just don’t work anymore because of hybrids and more fuel efficient cars… or so they say. Of course it is just an excuse to track us, to have more power.

            Weight and usage is proportional to fuel use. If the fleet average has changed so much just change the fuel taxes to match. Of course there has been no significant change overall for the fleet of vehicles on the road and since passenger cars subsidize heavy trucks all that would be needed is to track and tax by mile the heavy commercial trucks.

          • August 5, 2012 at 9:50 am

            Yup –

            Progressive is the camel’s nose under the tent. The voluntary (for now) black boxes that send data about your driving habits directly to the Man. I have no doubt – none – that there will be an attempt to impose this across the board within ten years at the outside. It will be precipitated by a PR campaign about (of course) “safety” – and how we’ll save so much money. That it’s just not right some drivers get away with “dangerous” acts, since the cops can’t be everywhere all the time. And how it’s wrong that “we” have to pay for the consequences of the “dangerous driving” of others. There will also be a lot of talk about “paying as you go” for infrastructure, “conserving resources” – and so on.

            Anyone out there doubt it?

        • methylamine
          August 4, 2012 at 4:14 pm

          God help me if they start doing time-distance ticketing on Houston toll roads! I’ll have to park in front of the toll booth for two to five minutes at every junction!

          But those runs at 120+ will be worth it.

          • David Ward
            August 5, 2012 at 2:39 am

            That will never happen, think about it if tax per mile ever happened then those same hamlets, towns and cities would also suffer. It is infractions they favor, a fine is better than a tax.

          • David Ward
            August 5, 2012 at 2:40 am

            automated enforcement by car is coming.
            mark my word.

  17. August 3, 2012 at 12:15 pm

    It’s so obvious I’m surprised nobody has mentioned it yet: in Soviet Russia, cars drive you.

    Also, readers might be interested in Ron Goulart’s short story Into the Shop for where this could lead (the other comments are relevant, too).

  18. Kenn Williamson
    August 3, 2012 at 2:18 pm

    This is my first time posting after reading for a long time. I just wanted to say that the technology itself isn’t evil. I personally don’t like driving in town because of all the traffic and idiots. I would like to ride in a car that drives itself. However I think you’re right that eventually it will be mandatory for your car to drive itself. This is what is wrong. If someone like me has the option to let the car do the driving and someone else who enjoys it can drive their self then I don’t see what the problem is. But unfortunately the world we live in is moving toward forced standardization. One size fits all in everything. That is what we need to fight against. Not technology but the idea that everyone should be doing, saying, or thinking the same thing. I just wanted to make this point because sometimes it seems like we are attacking anything with the potential for abuse rather than the abuses. This has to stop otherwise people will dismiss our views as “Luddite” or “technophobe” even if we make valid points.

  19. Saner
    August 3, 2012 at 2:28 pm

    Can’t really see much possibility of a robo-cycle so I guess two wheelers will be banned.

    Douglas re:#4. Already here… OnStar. Cops call GM and car shuts down.

    Excuse me, I have to go feed the horse and livestock, weed my garden and clean my guns. I wonder how long until I have to install OnStar on my four-legged ride?

    —Head for the hills, it’s gonna get ugly in Cloverburb—

  20. August 3, 2012 at 5:36 pm

    Eric said:

    My favorite [paronym] so far is Cloverstan – as in: We live in a Cloverstan; the place is full of Clovers!

    The UFSA really should be renamed The People’s Fascialist Demoncracy of Cloverstan. The national flag would be patterned after the current U.S. flag, except that the red stripes would be replaced by grey steel prison bars and the fifty white stars on a blue field would be replaced by fifty green clovers on a piss-yellow field (a shit-brown field would be more appropriate, but that color combination just doesn’t work in this case). The Amerikan bald eagle would be replaced by the Cloverstan vulture (the slug, the sloth, the remora, and the common tape worm would also be suitable candidate animals for the national symbol).

    I’d give anything to see somebody with artistic talent run with this!

    • August 3, 2012 at 5:37 pm

      Damn, I just looked at my post and realized that my fat fingers created a new word: “Demoncracy.”

      I didn’t mean it, guys – honest!

    • methylamine
      August 3, 2012 at 6:18 pm

      I’m still partial to renaming the USSA “dumbfuckistan”. Just rolls right off the tongue.

      • August 3, 2012 at 8:37 pm

        It is indeed the perfect name; unfortunately, it has too many syllables for the dumbfuck clovers to pronounce.

  21. Mark
    August 3, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    To paraphrase Bastiat, If people are so stupid and evil as to not be permitted Liberty; why is it the proposals of politicians, bureaucrats and social activists are always considered good? Are they not also members of the human race?

    • mithrandir
      August 3, 2012 at 6:42 pm

      That logic is spot on topic!

    • August 3, 2012 at 8:39 pm

      Are they not also members of the human race?

      That really depends on how one defines the term “human race.” By my personal definition of the term, politicians, social activists, and bureau-rats would be categorically excluded.

  22. David Webb
    August 3, 2012 at 6:34 pm

    Computers are simply automatic processors of data. Garbage in — Processed garbage out.
    While in a big, big city like New York City or Chicago, I can see where a cab service might be automated to take you from point A to point B less expensively than a car. Parking is always a problem in a big city. No parking, less of a problem with the computerized vehicle.
    For the rest of us, the problem might just be as simple as weather. About 4 or more times a year in the midwest, the weather gets really, really hazardous. Snow, covering up the ice on the road, and idiots driving way too close on bad roads, is our version of a darwin award. These idiots tend to take careful drivers with them. So if possible those of us who can, stay off the roads during those times. This icy condition takes a lot of people off the roads permanently. Computerized versions of cars, cannot possibly think fast enough to avoid disaster in these situations.Processors have come a long way since the 80s. Since about 1994, most cars have on board computers according to my mechanic.
    These computers also have a tendency to go wrong at the very worst possible moments.
    It will be interesting to see how murphy’s law on steroids will deal with these computers. Because this year has been one of those years where murphy’s law seems to work overtime on all of us.
    After all these computers are perfect, right? Nothing could possibly go wrong, go wrong, go wrong, go wrong . . .

  23. Bogart
    August 3, 2012 at 7:19 pm

    I love the technology. Blind people can not have their own cars and do not have to depend on taxi or bus monopolies. Cars will be able to drive faster and closer to one another. The high speed rail foolishness will be once and for all dismantled. And best yet, most air travel and their crazy security crap will go the way of the dodo.

  24. mike
    August 3, 2012 at 8:09 pm

    Where does this leave motorcyclist?
    im not giving up my bike.. so the government can screw !

  25. Brad Smith
    August 4, 2012 at 5:18 am

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8zWBZ2JZNXM&list=PL101336834998F6AF&index=1&feature=plpp_video

    Just another silly episode of the Red Green show. One of the best parts is when he talks about government.

  26. Brad Smith
    August 4, 2012 at 5:43 am
  27. Hook
    August 4, 2012 at 6:45 am

    Never gonna happen, because it would completely remove a major source of income (tickets) for the state. Everyone’s car will be following the law to a ‘t’, and no one will get tickets.

    • Tinsley Grey Sammons
      August 4, 2012 at 3:32 pm

      BINGO!!!

    • jason
      August 4, 2012 at 4:29 pm

      Ye of little faith. You will be required to use this new form of public transportation, since walking will be deemed to risky. They can then tax it to death.

  28. GM Forsythe
    August 4, 2012 at 12:03 pm

    Throw in the fact that the TSA is now exploring the possibility of expanding its intrusive inspections to public ground transportation and it doesn’t take too much imagination to see them running “spot checks” of cars (and motorcycles too) to their area of “responsibility.” This will, of course, be aided by those computers on your car that will report to government agencies exactly where you are going. George Orwell had no idea of how we would expand on his book 1984.

    • Tinsley Grey Sammons
      August 4, 2012 at 1:17 pm

      “George Orwell had no idea of how we would expand on his book 1984.”

      The classic warning that apparently has failed to have any effect whatsoever on the collective consciousness* of civilized mankind. Unpardonably sad.

      Homo “sapiens” is surely a misnomer. Homo “dickhead” would be more descriptive.

      tgsam

      *Coined by C.G. Jung. Although humans exist as Individuals the existence of a collective consciousness is empirically evident.

      • Dan
        August 4, 2012 at 10:48 pm

        Homo Sap-ien

  29. jason
    August 4, 2012 at 4:26 pm

    I still repeat… The problem is with public roads. I am sure some roads will ban humans from driving maybe even requiring mass transit, while some roads will have only human drivers. It is too bad that human driving will be outlawed and deemed to risky. Cops will send robots to your house to arrest you, throw you in the back seat, having the car drop you off downtown. Cars will become a kind of prison, then again so will our homes.

  30. Brad Smith
    August 5, 2012 at 2:47 am

    “We’re gathering information from families’ vehicles throughout this community to find out the direct impact the Volt has on the grid and how to get drivers the lowest possible charging rates,” said Pudar. “This project will also help us develop future capabilities of the Volt and other plug-in electric vehicles.”

    Pecan Street is funded by a $10.4 million grant from the Energy Department and more than $14 million in matching funds from project partners. Although Pecan Street oversees the consortia, it also includes researchers from the University of Texas, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the Environmental Defense Fund. It’s housed in the University of Texas at Austin.

    Besides the Volt, residents will use smart appliances in conjunction with home-management systems and smart electric meters, energy storage that optimizes the use of solar power, clean energy distribution and green building construction.”

    http://www.insideline.com/chevrolet/volt/2012/2012-chevrolet-volt-becomes-centerpiece-of-smart-community.html

    The thing I find Ironic is that it’s now green to be completely hooked up to the grid. I thought one of the reasons for being green was to get away from this kind of thing?

    • August 5, 2012 at 3:57 am

      The thing I find Ironic is that it’s now green to be completely hooked up to the grid. I thought one of the reasons for being green was to get away from this kind of thing?

      “Green” means whatever TPTB want it to mean, which means that “green” is nothing but pure, unadulterated PC bullshit.

      – “Green” is the reason I have not, do not, and never will recycle household trash, especially when the enviro-corporatocracy that collects my refuse wants to CHARGE me for the “privilege” ([SARCASM]I thought recyclables were turning a PROFIT for these outfits[/SARCASM]). All of my trash goes into the big 100-gallon can, whether it consists of food scraps, paper, plastic, scrap metal, or flammable HAZMAT (okay, I’m exaggerating on that last one, but you get my point).

      – “Green” is the reason I continue to drive, as one of my four vehicles, a ten-year-old Dodge Ram V8 2500 diesel pickup, one that, as has been the case with all of the vehicles I have ever owned, I intend to drive until it literally falls apart.

      – “Green” is the reason I burn cardboard and plastic (yes, PLASTIC), along with scrap wood, yard trimmings, and whatever the hell else is combustible six or seven times a year in my outdoor fire pit (it’s great to live out in the sticks!).

      – “Green” is the reason I burn incandescent light bulbs and will continue to do so for as long as I can get them – FUCK THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT AND ITS CFL MANDATE.

      – “Green” is the reason I DEMAND plastic bags at the grocery store – lots of them, insisting that anything that gets bagged gets double-bagged. Even at their thinnest, plastic bags are more useful than paper bags and LAST LONGER, allowing me to use them for other things around the house.

      – “Green” is the reason I’ve stocked up on the tubular florescent bulbs that USG hates and is trying to outlaw.

      – “Green” is the reason I refuse to put a usage meter on my electricity meter. The amount of electricity that I burn, electricity that I pay [too much] for is nobody’s fucking business but mine.

      – “Green” is the reason I still indulge in SMOKEY tobacco.

      – “Green” is the reason I say FUCK GREEN!

      • BrentP
        August 5, 2012 at 5:29 am

        The thing about having a decent memory for events and trends shows the absurdities of the agendas and narratives. I remember when plastic bags were “green” because the paper bags were made from trees. Now the paper bags are “green” because plastic bags are made from plastic which often comes from oil and paper bags come from trees and are “renewable”.

        As to reusing the bags, each has their purpose. Some stores I go to have paper. Some have plastic. I have uses for both.

        • August 5, 2012 at 9:42 am

          The thing about having a decent memory for events and trends shows the absurdities of the agendas and narratives. I remember when plastic bags were “green” because the paper bags were made from trees. Now the paper bags are “green” because plastic bags are made from plastic which often comes from oil and paper bags come from trees and are “renewable”.

          And that perfectly illustrates the utter, juvenile imbecility of the whole idea. It’s also really, truly terrifying to dwell on the fact that a nation that considers itself to be “the world’s only superpower” is populated in the main by acerebral sheeple who swallow and cling to this bullshit as gospel.

      • clark
        August 5, 2012 at 5:31 am

        liberranter, I liked your “Green” rant, except the paper bag part. As I recall, the plastic bags were the “Green” product used to replace the so-called “earth-unfriendly” paper sack back in the day.

        I reuse paper sacks about as much as plastic, and paper bags hold more,… I mean, watch a grocery store clerk put items in a paper sack vs. plastic, that is – if – you can find one that knows how to sack.

        I like dealing with one paper bag vs. fifty plastic sacks with one item in each sack.

        The cloth bags are the worst though, imho.

        Also, this was a great thread, I’m glad I stayed up and read the whole thing.

        … And no one brought up the use of Drones by police to go after drivers? That-a-ways the police can be in these automated cars too.

        Some say it will never happen. Who knows.
        The unitedstate might not crash if they rearrange things via war and nuke their lenders,… what then? Clovertopia?

        • Douglas
          August 5, 2012 at 6:33 am

          “Green-ness”, often concurrent but at times confused with energy efficiency, is usually reflected in the life-cycle COST. IMO, what the “Eye-Talians” called a “buste” works out to be “greener” for the average consumer. They ARE cheaper, but they usually get re-used as garbage bags or lunch bags (I reuse mine with an old soda carton until they get filthy).
          I have a keen interest in conservation and waste management, but groan at many of the Government “solutions”, often designed to placate the intellectually-challenged who buy into the “Save the Planet” nonsense.
          So why entrust the guidance and velocity of your ride to the same outfit that can’t even shovel shit right?

          • August 5, 2012 at 9:38 am

            So why entrust the guidance and velocity of your ride to the same outfit that can’t even shovel shit right?

            A question that the typical clovermoricon (damn, another clover paronym; this is getting ridiculous!) can’t even conceive of asking him/herself, let alone demand an answer to.

      • Brad Smith
        August 5, 2012 at 7:28 am

        Right on and I haven’t had garbage collection for years.

        My wife takes the plastic bags cuts them up and weaves them into rugs.

        As for Tobacco I gave it up, for the most part, (a cigar once and a while) only because it was killing me in the mornings. I now build my own e-cigs. The government hates them and is tying to ban them (another good reason). I build big battery mods and great tasting juice that is crazy high in nic.

        One of the nice things about the e-cigs is that I play in bands and cigs are illegal at the bars. I can puff my e-cig all night long and blow it in their face.

        If you are interested I will send you a box mod with juice and charger for free. I don’t intend to spam Eric’s site though.

        I build them myself, lithium ion batteries, low resistance atomizers that vaporize the juice. The juice is nicotine, flavorings, and a base of VG or PG. PG (propylene glycol), VG (vegetable glycerin)

        • August 5, 2012 at 9:52 am

          As for Tobacco I gave it up, for the most part, (a cigar once and a while) only because it was killing me in the mornings.

          I’m probably one of only six men in North America under the age of 80 (and one of only a few hundred men altogether) who smokes a pipe and who buys the pipe tobacco and smokes it straight (i.e., not blended with cigarette tobacco and rolled by hand). The nice part about it is that, for now, the taxes on the stuff are very much lower than for cigarette tobacco. Average cost per ounce is about $2.60. My biggest worry is that now that PT is becoming a popular component of “homemade rolls,” which are themselves becoming increasingly popular as a way of getting around the ever-rising cigarette taxes (for which we can thank the cigarette-smoking Hypocrite-in-Chief), the cost of this stuff will skyrocket in the next couple of years, making me have to quit for good.

        • dom
          August 5, 2012 at 12:46 pm

          That is wild. Do the e-cigs impair your lung capacity? That was the reason I quit smoking many years ago. Sometimes I drop a couple hundred on a few boxes of cigars, but I burn through them so fast and then feel like shit (because the smoking and the amount I spent). Instead I just dip Skoal like a maniac. Even Skoal is super expensive.

          • clark
            August 5, 2012 at 2:58 pm

            Ya might wanna try rolling your own with tobacco that does not have additives, imho it’s additives that diminish lung capacity and cause all the associated problems.

            It’s been a huge difference for me anyway.
            Plus, they don’t stink like commercial cigarettes do.

            Next up, grow your own tobacco?

            Those e-cigs kind of creep me out for some reason.

          • methylamine
            August 5, 2012 at 7:17 pm

            @dom:

            e-cigs are awesome. I used to dip like a fiend, and smoke occasionally; hated smoking’s after-effects on my lungs/body.

            e-cigs give you all the nicotine and none of the toxins; the toxins arise from burning tobacco. Sure, the additives make it worse, but it’s the burning that creates toxins even from pure tobacco.

            Try them. You’ll like them.

            And it’s a big middle finger to Sister Sebelius, the bitch at the head of the FDA.

    • August 5, 2012 at 9:39 am

      “The thing I find Ironic is that it’s now green to be completely hooked up to the grid. I thought one of the reasons for being green was to get away from this kind of thing?”

      Of course not. If “green” was really the goal, they’d encourage (for example) home-brew fuel. It’s “clean” and “renewable.” It will also invite a thug scrum to your house – and end up with you in prison and reduced to penury.

      “green” is really red – or brown.

      And it’s all about control.

      • August 5, 2012 at 9:55 am

        “green” is really red – or brown.

        And it’s all about control.

        EXACTLY, Eric! This ought to be turned into bumper stickers, posters, t-shirts, and plaques and distributed far and wide.

  31. David Ward
    August 5, 2012 at 2:56 am

    As to the term Clover, I think it is a bit biased, I happen to be part Irish. Clover is what? A clover is a plant. I prefer Glover. G for government and lover for what it is? Do I need to progress? Clover? I mean I miss it. I’d rather slap a person with a glove than a plant.

    But that is just my opinion.

    David Ward,
    Memphis, Tennessee.

  32. Douglas
    August 5, 2012 at 4:29 am

    Typically there has always been a lag between the capability of hardware and the implementation of same due to human factors engineering. A bunch of fancy, schmancy verbiage, simply meaning that (1) it takes time to exploit the capabilities of new technology, and (2) in the words of Grand Master Yoda, “You must UNLEARN what you have ‘learned'”. Translation: New protocols and standards (ISO in many cases) have to be devised; this all requires time under the best of scenarios (and put “Gubmint” in charge, and it’ll certainly NOT best the “best”, the timeliest, or the most cost-effective). Ok, enuf ranting.
    Take in case the implementation of Jet Airliners. We saw the first jet flight in 1939, the first jet fighters in both the USA, UK, and Germany in 1942 (it would be 1944 before both the UK and Germany would actually deploy jet aircraft), the first jet bombers in late 1944..and the first jet airliner (De Havilland Comet) in 1952. NONE of this went w/o glitches, especially the Comet! There were several OTHER things that had to happen:
    (1) There needed to be a MARKET, which was opened up by many airlines either starting up or expanding thanking to a vertiable surfeit of surplus transport aircraft (C-47s being recylced into DC-3s in most cases). That and many localities were desperately trying to make viable airports out of WW2-era military airfields that had sprung thanks to “Dubya-Dubya Two, the Big One”, not unlike what’s happening to BRAC installations all over the country (with the same “Gubmint” incompetence attempting to make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear).
    2) There HAD been abortive attempts to field larger airliners (Boeing 377 and Convair C-37) based on recent bomber designs. Due to technical limits (big, fuel-thirsty, maintenance-intensive recip engines), it just wasn’t panning out versus train travel (another subsidized Federal boondoggle). Hey, the “Superchief” could make it from Chicago to Los Angeles in 36 hours, and that was good enough at the time! When reliable and reasonably fuel-efficient turbofans came out, it was a big leap in terms of not only fuel consumption (cost, passenger-miles per gallon or fuel weight) but even more important, mean time between overhaul (MTBO), as well as the jet engines, in comparsion to, say, a Wright R-3350 or a P&W 4360 (“Wasp Major”). Imagine swapping out 56 spark plugs and running a compression check on each engine every two months! It took time and LOTS of dinero to acquire a new fleet of 707s, 727s, DC-8s, and DC-9s, but once their advantages were obvious, it was the swan song of the piston-engined airliner. Many were, in fact, retired while perfectly airworthy (some found a second life on secondary routes or in the cargo role) due to economics.
    3) There was concurrent leaps in electronics which reduced weight and simplied aircraft communication and navigation. The original 707 had a crew cabin for FIVE (pilot, co-pilot, navigator, radio operator, and flight engineer). The flight engineer was a vestige from the piston engine days (the old recips took a lot of babying even in flight to keep going, my Dad told me of a tale of an old KB-50 bomber where they carried two 55-gal drums of engine oil, and the engineer would pump some into a receptacle to top off the engines which ran best when “loose”). After a few years the flight engineer was found to be redundant. Then as computers and better navigational aids took over (both in the aircraft and ground-based), at first the role of navigator and radioman was merged, then eliminated altogether). Since airlines have been fairly much “fly-by-wire” for about 30 years now, one would ask why even bother with TWO pilots, let alone one, since the plane can actually go gate-to-gate completely automated? Answer: It’s a big leap of faith, but as a practical matter the pilots have largely been reduced to a role of computer operator anyway; they depend entirely on computer-based systems to fly the plane at all. So at some point, we’ll see it go down to just one pilot on short flights at first; then, the airlines will sell the notion that the pilots have had nothing to do for years, and should be eliminated. We may see this in our lifetimes.

    I suspect that the transition to automation in the consumer automotive market will be gradual; again, as many of you have well pointed out, with more control slipping out of the motorists’ hands, it’ll be ripe for Governments big and small to find ways to exploit it for revenue, wit the anal-rententive freaks getting their jollies off that more of the “human factor” has been taken out.

    “AJ Foyt” (from the first Cannonball Run movie) will have his revenge yet. Shit.

    • Tinsley Grey Sammons
      August 5, 2012 at 1:39 pm

      I would never up to 1,000 miles were high-speed rail transportation available.

      Air transport will always have insurmountable limitations and gravity assisted risk.

    • Tinsley Grey Sammons
      August 5, 2012 at 1:51 pm

      Boeing 377

      In 1953 I flew E to W transatlantic as a passenger in a 377. I think it was occasionally called a Pregnant Guppy at the time. Boeing borrowed heavily from the B-29 for that one. It was slow and noisy. I recalled seeing icebergs and though it was summer, thinking how unpleasant ditching would be. New Year’s Day 1967 I made a crossing in a BOAC VC-10 and recall thinking the same unpleasant thought.

  33. Tinsley Grey Sammons
    August 5, 2012 at 11:42 am

    “The thing I find Ironic is that it’s now green to be completely hooked up to the grid. I thought one of the reasons for being green was to get away from this kind of thing?” –Brad Smith

    The thing that I find Ironic is that so little serious attention is paid to population growth. US population is now 310,000,000 and rapidly increasing.

    Freedom will wither in direct proportion to a growing population.

    “Someday people will hate one another simply because there are so many.” –Philip Wylie (Finley Wren (1936))

    Wylie was right and the proof is upon us. I was born in 1936 and the US population has much more than doubled in my lifetime.

  34. clark
    August 5, 2012 at 3:04 pm

    Suddenly I’m reminded of a “study” (?) out of Baylor University along the lines of: All the People of the world can fit in the state of Texas and still have about an acre or two a piece.

    The world does not seem so crowded when you look at it like that.

    It’s the controls in place that make things go wrong.

    • Tinsley Grey Sammons
      August 5, 2012 at 4:57 pm

      “The world does not seem so crowded when you look at it like that.”

      Apply knowledge and Critical Thinking and as an argument supporting careless procreation of naked apes it has more holes than a colander. The nasty little animal is clever but he is not wise.

      I wonder if Soylent Green tastes like chicken?

      • clark
        August 5, 2012 at 7:44 pm

        Population Growth as Propaganda: The Greens and the Reds – by Gary North

        “Beginning in the mid-1960s, a propaganda campaign has been waged against the West. Those favoring government control over the economy have used the fear of a population explosion to persuade voters to allow the governments of the world to interfere with their lives. …

        The Malthusians always talk about the burden of more mouths to feed. They never talk about the economic benefits of more hands to work and more minds to think creatively beginning two decades later. They ignore the long-term capital returns from a 15-year or 20-year capital investment in morality and education. That is, they are present-oriented and therefore lower-class social theorists. …

        The world is almost empty. Fly across any of it and look down. The population apocalyptics of today are like those late Renaissance-era Church scientists who refused to look into Galileo’s telescope. …

        Society today suffers not from overpopulation but from overregulation. We suffer not from a growing scarcity of resources but from a growing scarcity of freedom. …

        The world does not need fewer people; it needs fewer bureaucrats.”

        Read the whole she-bang here:

        http://www.garynorth.com/public/8071.cfm

        • Tinsley Grey Sammons
          August 5, 2012 at 8:13 pm

          Regulated or not, the fact that there are too many is simply too obvious for me to overlook or deny.

          • clark
            August 5, 2012 at 11:05 pm

            The facts in the link above say otherwise, but why let pesky facts get in the way of anything?

            Are you John Holdren or Paul Ehrlich?

            ‘Cause you sound just like them.

            Too Many (Other) People – by William Norman Grigg

            The “… ruling elites had to indoctrinate the public into accepting the idea that “parenthood [is] a privilege extended by society, rather than a right”…

            Every argument on behalf of state-imposed population control rejects the concept of individual self-ownership and assumes that human lives — individually and in the aggregate — are a resource to be managed by society’s supervisors on behalf of the “common good.” …”

            http://www.lewrockwell.com/grigg/grigg-w102.html

            Surprise, surprise, Just like the reasoning for V2V.

        • Tinsley Grey Sammons
          August 6, 2012 at 12:03 am

          State-imposed encouragement of irresponsible population increase is just plain stupid. Welfare ought never to have started and immigration ought to have been reduced to a trickle a century ago. Only Individuals that America actually needs should be naturalized. Von Braun, Lippish, and other Krauts come to mind.

          I can remember when I could easily shoot, piss, and shit outdoors without being observed. It’s difficult to find places close to home where one can do that any more. Crisscross America slowly at about 1500 feet and you will find that most old growth forests are gone and the naked apes seem to be everywhere. You will also discover that areas that you thought were sparsely populated, are full of houses, sheds and people when you look from a low flying aircraft. If you try to take a walk in the woods you will soon run into a fence or find yourself in someone’s yard.

          Even the big telescopes are often rendered ineffective by light pollution.

          Betcha ol’ Eric frequently pisses in his yard in broad daylight. I only piss in mine at night.

          As for blathering North, he wouldn’t make a pimple on Asimov’s dead ass.

          • clark
            August 6, 2012 at 4:43 am

            … “There are a surprising number of people out there that actually advocate for mass murder and mass enslavement for the good of the planet.”

            http://endoftheamericandream.com/archives/the-elite-believe-that-you-are-ruining-their-planet-and-they-want-you-to-stop-reproducing

          • August 6, 2012 at 9:10 am

            Absolutely agree on the removal of moral hazard when it comes to having kids. There are without question millions of people who should not be having kids who are – and not just one or two, but often four or five or more. I am speaking of the people who produce kids they cannot (ore will not) provide for. These kids then become an economic burden on others (at gunpoint, via the state) and as adults – to a great extent – repeat the cycle themselves. The system has permitted – has encouraged – the coming into existence of a huge underclass, much of it criminally inclined. It’s a disaster.

            I also agree that you cannot have both a welfare state and open borders – that is another recipe for economic suicide.

            PS: I can still pee in daylight out here – but you’re right, population grows noticeably with every passing year. We worry that the 100 acres behind us is going to be subdivided. If I could afford to, I’d buy the whole thing – and then at least I’d know no McMansions (or trailer parks) will be sprouting up anywhere near us….

          • BrentP
            August 6, 2012 at 3:32 pm

            The underclass is not disaster for those in power. It is exactly what they wanted. Poverty was in decline and if that trend had continued the powers that be would have competition or just be plain out.

            The underclass is a tool against the middle class and by making the middle class pay for it all it diminishes the ability of the middle class to fight politically.

            At least that’s how it looks to me…. just the power structure playing its usual games. They never cared for helping the poor, but they needed welfare to maintain their power.

          • methylamine
            August 7, 2012 at 1:45 am

            Yes we agree there–Obama is the master of the Cloward-Piven strategy, and among his moves is the move to legalize immigration under the table.

            Bring’em in, get’em on weffayr, get’em voting. And get’em breeding.

            See my comment below on FREEDOM, and its effects on prosperity and birthrate.

  35. Tinsley Grey Sammons
    August 6, 2012 at 12:39 pm

    OVERPOPULATION

    “Human dignity cannot survive it. Convenience and decency cannot survive it. As you put more and more people into the world, the value of life not only declines, it disappears. It doesn’t matter if someone dies.” – Isaac Asimov

    • BrentP
      August 6, 2012 at 7:10 pm
      • Tinsley Grey Sammons
        August 6, 2012 at 9:49 pm

        I’ve put much effort into making my backyard and patio a beautiful place. I can watch hummingbirds feed and see an occasional raccoon or possum at the dog’s food dish. At night I can even go out naked and piss in the yard with the dog. However, I am painfully aware that the land beyond my eight foot privacy fence is full of naked apes, their homes, and their machinery. I can often hear their voices and smell their outdoor fires when they illegally burn toxic materials . . . inconsiderate bastards!

        Re: Lennon. Any of the Beatles could afford a much larger spread to distance himself from others.

  36. methylamine
    August 6, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    I just finished re-reading Gary Allen’s None Dare Call It Conspiracy, and it’s fantastic.

    I highly recommend it to all of you.
    Here it is in full for free online:
    None Dare Call It Conspiracy

    It’s short, sweet, and hits all the high points; he describes the chief evil, central fiat-debt-money banking. He chronicles how the Thug-Elite bankrolled Communism and Socialism–which makes no sense unless you understand why the ultra-rich love socialism. And he explains how the conspiracy works through circles-within-circles through the CFR and other institutions.

    He also outlines WHY the Elite produce a huge underclass purposely–as BrentP points out, the underclass is used against the middle class in a pincer movement, so the middle class is simultaneously threatened physically by the underclass, forced to pay for them, and hammered on the top by the Thug-Elite.

    Look what happens in England; when there’s a riot–quite calculatedly caused by the Elites’ economic policies–the underclass riots. It frightens and threatens the middle class–who clamor for more Police State…and boy, do they get it!

    • BrentP
      August 6, 2012 at 7:08 pm

      I just tried reading it from at site… I didn’t get more than a couple screen scrolls in when the missing words, repeated lines, and other typos just made it too painful. The preview on amazon is intact without the errors.

      • methylamine
        August 7, 2012 at 1:46 am

        Yeah sorry it’s a crap copy. Best to just buy it or find a better source…sorry for the bad link!

  37. Tinsley Grey Sammons
    August 6, 2012 at 3:50 pm

    The underclass is a tool against the middle class and by making the middle class pay for it all it diminishes the ability of the middle class to fight politically.

    BINGO Brent! It dawned on me decades ago that the so-called Middle Class is being devoured by predators on one end and parasites on the other.

    America’s legislators continue to create laws that are intrinsically criminal. Their victims have the moral authority to do whatever is necessary to end it it.

  38. Tinsley Grey Sammons
    August 7, 2012 at 12:15 am

    There are without question millions of people who should not be having kids who are – and not just one or two, but often four or five or more. I am speaking of the people who produce kids they cannot (ore will not) provide for.

    Eric, Even if they can provide for more than two children there is still for each individual the 75 or more years of use and depletion of finite resources to consider*. There is also the geometric increase to expect. Two times two equals four while five times two equals ten.

    tgsam

    *As far as I know, this expressed thought is a tgsam original.

    • methylamine
      August 7, 2012 at 1:42 am

      You’re putting yourself in some questionable company with this overpopulation drumbeat, TGS.

      “Depleting finite resources”–ah, the old Malthusian/Ehrlichian saw.

      Except, they’re not finite. The Earth is constantly replenishing itself; we live on the crust and exploit at most two miles down for minerals, and four or five for petroleum.

      The latest news on petroleum and gas couldn’t be better; turns out, we have IMMENSE amounts we haven’t tapped. There’s strong evidence for the abiotic origin–that is, that it’s not a “fossil fuel” but arises abiotically. Makes sense, considering many meteorites/comets are “carbonaceous chondrites”–basically dirty balls of snow and coal. The primordial Earth was similar in composition–implying large, untapped reservoirs of carbon.

      Minerals, too; they’re only scarce if you’re trapped thinking in terms of existing technologies and the top two miles of crust. What about oceanic nodules? Turns out, there’s trillions of tons of high-quality metals lying around on the sea floor.

      And what about when we start mining asteroids? Essentially unlimited amounts.

      Energy scarcity? Hardly. The Earth is bathed in 1KW/m^2 of sunlight. The oceans are chock-full of enough deuterium that once we nail fusion, we’ll be stocked for millenia–and that’s assuming fusion remains so primitive we continue to depend on deuterium. Figure out direct hydrogen fusion, and energy stops being a question at all.

      Overpopulation? PFwaag. It feels overpopulated because
      a) we’re being purposely herded into closer association thanks to programs like UN Agenda 21–Maurice Strong’s little gift to the Club of Rome
      b) idiots like to associate with other idiots. Don’t like it? Move out.

      Want to slow population growth? Ensure prosperity; and to do that, start with FREEDOM. Free, prosperous people have fewer kids–if it weren’t for immigrants, the US population would be decreasing. Every other rich, industrialized nation is at break-even or declining. Prosperous, free people delay child-rearing until later, and concentrate more resources on fewer children.

      Pollution? Want to stop it? Make sure everyone’s prosperous. How to do that? Make sure everyone’s free. The quickest route to prosperity, as the jealous and psychopathic Elite know, is to grant individual freedom and property rights–just like America did until 100 years ago. Want to see clean industry and high environmental standards? Look at rich countries–Japan, Germany, America, et al–wealth and prosperity ensure there’s enough money to clean up industry.

      Want to see ecological disasters that will make your hair curl before it falls out? Look at socialist and communist states–Soviet Union, China, North Korea. They turn their countries into stinking cesspools of pollution and filth–because the State doesn’t give a shit, it just wants control. Prosperous people who really care about the environment, not the pseudo-environmentalist socialist watermelons, sue dirty plants for despoiling their air and water. Private property rights ensure that polluters get clean, or get poor, quickly.

      Malthus predicted doom and was proven wrong. Ehrlich–wrong. Every other doomsayer and overpopulation shill–wrong.

      What’s the REAL agenda behind today’s “overpopulation” movement? Same as it’s always been–Eugenics

      And guess who gets to live? That’s right, the same psychopathic Elite who’ve been shoving this crap down our throats for two hundred years. Hell, thousands of years–the Mayans sacrificed children to the gods to appeal to them for better crops. Of course it doesn’t work–but it works for the Elites, because they like killing people. They don’t care about overpopulation–they just want an excuse to kill people–because eventually, the Elite go crazy in every empire.

      • Tinsley Grey Sammons
        August 7, 2012 at 2:08 am

        Sorry you missed it meth, so here it is again:

        OVERPOPULATION

        “Human dignity cannot survive it. Convenience and decency cannot survive it. As you put more and more people into the world, the value of life not only declines, it disappears. It doesn’t matter if someone dies.” – Isaac Asimov

        • methylamine
          August 7, 2012 at 3:12 am

          I’m not on that boat, Tinsley.

          Just because Asimov says it doesn’t make it true; I prefer to think things through myself.

          Having done so–I’ve concluded the Earth is very, very far from overpopulated. It’s merely overconcentrated population, and those that are concentrated make themselves seem more numerous by their sheer idiocy.

          Perhaps you’ve made the mistake of confusing your revulsion for humanity with the more general phenomenon. It’s an easy mistake, confusing the specific and the general.

          • DD
            August 7, 2012 at 8:57 am

            You can actually place everyone in the world shoulder-to-shoulder on the Isle of Man. If you place everyone in the world in Texas, it would have the same density of Paris.

            The world is not over populated at all and can easily handle 160 billion people. The Terrorists want you to think very lowly of humanity and will try to get you to believe humanity is scum so that when they mass murder-the little people will cheer them on. Telling humans that there are too many of them get the little tax livestock hating on one another.

      • BrentP
        August 7, 2012 at 2:46 pm

        Resources… what happens to many of the “consumed” resources? They end up in landfills. If we need these resources, we know where they are. If we need them it will be economical to extract them from the landfills.

    • August 7, 2012 at 10:04 am

      This is anecdotal, but for what it’s worth:

      In my circle of friends and family, the kids being produced are fewer than the adults producing them. We have only one set of friends with more than two kids (that is, more than “replacement value”). Several – including us – have no kids. My wife has two sisters. None have had kids and it looks like only one of them will have kids. My sister has one kid and isn’t planning another.

      I’ve read that this dynamic is fairly typical among college-educated white people. We’re on the decline – both here and in Europe.

      Reason? Reverse moral hazard. We’re penalized for being responsible – by being forced to pay endless tribute to those who are not. Having kids – if you are responsible – is one of the surest paths to penury.

      Plus, having kids in this country invites yet more Cloverism into one’s life. Everything from saaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaafety seats to Ritalin. Who wants to sign up for that?

      • Tinsley Grey Sammons
        August 7, 2012 at 2:00 pm

        Not only is the White Race headed for extinction, it is paving the way and financing its own passing. In a sense the race is committing suicide.

        Worse than sad, it’s utterly insane. More than anything else, the absence of White Pride and Solidarity spells doom for the race.

      • BrentP
        August 7, 2012 at 5:07 pm

        It’s even worse. The culture, the advertising, and so on manipulating what people choose with regard to mates. Especially the choices women make.

        Rather than writing on it myself from my biased POV, I’ll just say look up Angela Fiori’s articles on LRC. She’s far more harsh than I would be, but makes the points I would and then some.

        • BrentP
          August 7, 2012 at 5:11 pm

          Found the key passage:
          http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig/fiori2.html

          “Today marriage is increasingly seen as a bad deal for responsible men like my brothers who spent their 20s earning degrees and building their careers as opposed to participating in Spring Break orgies. Sold on the lie that most women desired stable, faithful providers, they have no interest in trading away their standard of living for psychological baggage and numerous financial burdens not of their own making. “

  39. Datsun 2000 Mark
    August 7, 2012 at 12:39 am

    Just like in the Star Trek episode where the M5 Computer took over running the Enterprise and what did the other Captain call Kirk….? Captain Dunsel. We’ll all be driving Dunsel’s from now on and how fitting it being pioneered by a company that made the *Edsel*.

  40. Tinsley Grey Sammons
    August 7, 2012 at 11:54 pm

    There is much more to a quality existence for a human Individual than merely having room to stand.

    Attempting to stuff ten pounds of shit into a bag made for one inevitably yields unpleasant consequences.

  41. Tinsley Grey Sammons
    August 8, 2012 at 2:09 pm

    Telling humans that there are too many of them get the little tax livestock hating on one another.

    DD if there ever were 160 billion people they would not have to be told to hate one another.

    Hmm . . . I wonder if Soylent Green tastes like chicken?

    • BrentP
      August 8, 2012 at 2:30 pm

      overpopulation and thus the need to kill/sterilize those other people, over there has been in use for a very long time. Ask around, most people think it’s fine idea. Just like all the various controlling police state laws. They expect it all to be socially enforced on those other people, those bad people, over there, not themselves.

      I get a laugh at the news stories when someone like that gets enforced upon. They always mention how they are good people etc and so forth. How this isn’t supposed to happen to them… but they understand the need for the law in question… see for those other people, those bad people, over there.

      • Tinsley Grey Sammons
        August 8, 2012 at 5:23 pm

        All that I have suggested to be done is to refrain from encouraging irresponsible procreation and to reduce immigration to a trickle of scientists, engineers. technicians and others who can contribute something to America other than their appetites and excrement.

  42. Brad Smith
    August 10, 2012 at 4:11 am

    This is a video of an intersection with and without stoplights. The video on the left is without the lights, due to a power outage. The video on the right is a normal day with lights.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hFOo3e0nxSI&feature=player_embedded#!

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