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Comment Re:Good (Score 1) 257

Such a system only works if everyone is forced to only work 10 hours a week.

Perhaps altering the social norms so that this type of behavior (collecting) is unacceptable. We do the opposite now and that seems to be effective for producing a country of people who only want more.

Perhaps create an environment where mastery of an art or skill (something that takes time, not stuff) is highly desired and respected.

I'd live there ...

Comment Re:A good idea for a show... (Score 1) 109

In the case of vehicles, my craptacular 2002 Saturn s-series (and my wife's 1996 model) easily gets 36 mpg with an automatic transmission with reasonably proper maintenance. If I watch the lead foot carefully, I can squeeze out around 40-44, especially on extended trips. My friend with the new prius only gets 49-50 on the x-way, although they get in the mid-50's in city driving. My parents and sister with a new Corrolla and Fit get 38ish on the x-way and 30-32 max in the city.

My car has 75k miles on it and my wife's just rolled over 170k miles. They both run great and look good, too (thanks to the stupid plastic body panels). The only goofy thing is that you have to change the oil every 3000 miles. If you do that and basic maintenance, they will run for a solid 300k miles.

Taking into account total energy input, my cars beat a new one hands down. They aren't luxury cars by any means, and don't have all the new fangled gadgets, but they're cheap, won't have to have a new hybrid battery pack at 100k miles and get better fuel economy than most of what is put out nowadays.

I've seen several well done analysis on older cars (and one or two in Mother Earth News ... definitely anti-gas guzzler) and when taking into account all of the embodied energy that goes into manufacturing a car, even an old V-8 LTD does better than a new car.

In the summer, though, I try to ride my bike (with 2 kids and whatever else we decide to haul) wherever I can. You'd be surprised what you can do with a good bike trailer and an electric hub kit.

I'm just sayin' ...

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