Friday Biking Wrap Up


Detroit News

This is just a collection of small items…

Winter Cycling Photos

For three days in a row, either the Detroit News or the Detroit Free Press have run a photo of a cyclist riding in the cold and snowy environment.  The articles themselves were only about the cold weather and not about biking in it.

Cash for Clunkers

The Detroit News has reported that “Congress is mulling a proposal to pay people to get rid of those old gas guzzlers sitting in their driveways.”

Congress is talking about a $1 billion to $2 billion per program that would eventually reduce U.S. fuel usage by 40,000 and 80,000 barrels of fuel per day.

Under legislation introduced Wednesday in the House and Senate and called the “Cash for Clunkers” program, drivers could get vouchers of up to $4,500 when they turn in their old fuel-inefficient vehicles for scrapping and buy vehicles that get good gas mileage.

It seems the government could see much greater reduction in fuel usage by investing that money in bicycle facilities instead.

American Families and Bike Paths


Free Press

House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) was recently on Face the Nation and commented on Obama’s economic stimulus bill and what would be “responsible.”

I think there’s a place for infrastructure, but what kind of infrastructure? Infrastructure to widen highways, to ease congestion for American families? Is it to build some buildings that are necessary?…  But if we’re talking about beautification projects, or we’re talking about bike paths, Americans are not going to look very kindly on this.

Really?  American families are not going to appreciate government spending on biking facilities?  An America Bikes survey found 53% of Americans favor
increased federal spending on bike facilities.

Congressman Earl Blumenauer

The New York Times wrote an excellent article on Oregon’s congressman Earl Blumenauer.

“We have been flogging this bicycle thing for 20 years,” said Mr. Blumenauer, a Democrat. “All of a sudden it’s hot.”

But Mr. Blumenauer’s goals are larger than putting Americans on two wheels. He seeks to create what he calls a more sustainable society, including wiser use of energy, farming that improves the land rather than degrades it, an end to taxpayer subsidies for unwise development — and a transportation infrastructure that looks beyond the car.

Note that you don’t need to be from Oregon to donate money to his campaign.  We need to make sure he stays in Washington and continues to carry the torch for better bicycling.

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