But did God design a special place in hell for plagiarists?

(Cross-posted at Hominid Views.)

In talking about congestion pricing on my show Saturday night, I couldn’t contain a brief outburst over how our local media and political elite continue to take seriously the Discovery Institute’s transportation proposals in light of its embarrassing role in promoting Creationism Intelligent Design. My frustration stems not simply from the fact that Intelligent Design is ridiculous anti-science, or that it is part of a well planned and executed multi-year campaign to undermine science education in the US at a time we face growing global economic competition… but that it has been promoted in such a shamelessly dishonest manner.

The Discovery Institute has proven again and again that it makes no distinction between scholarship and propaganda, and that there is no ethical boundary it will not cross in the interest of foisting its Christianist agenda on the American people. This blatant disregard for the most basic rigors of academia — or even fair play — was highlighted recently by a virologist/blogger who discovered that DI fellows had stolen and manipulated a Harvard University/XVIVO video for use in their own presentations, without attribution, permission or license.

Here is the original Harvard/XVIVO video, “The inner life of a cell”, with its scientifically accurate narration intact:

And here is a clip from a Discovery Institute presentation that features an excerpt of the video, now redubbed and retitled “The Cell as an Automated City.” Notice how the presenter describes the video as “state of the art computer animation,” implying that it is somehow the work of the institute:

As ERV points out in his her post, this isn’t just a naive case of copyright infringement. The Discovery Institute has plenty of lawyers on staff and on retainer, so they sure as hell know that scrubbing the Harvard/XVIVO copyright and credits off the video is not only dishonest, but illegal.

Maybe they think it is ‘okay’ because they gave the animation a new title (’Inner life of a cell’ became ‘The cell as an automated city’) and an extraordinarily unprofessional new narration (alternate alternate title– ‘ Big Gay Al takes a tour of a cell!’). Harvard/XVIVOs narration, all of the science, is whisked away and replaced with a ’surrealistic lilliputian realm’– ‘robots’, ‘manufacturing’, ‘circuitry’, ‘nano moters’, ‘UPS labels’. Maybe they think it is ‘okay’ because they turned all of Harvards science into ‘MAGIC!’

Hmm. From my point of view, as a virologist and former teaching assistant, this isn’t just copyright infringement. This is theft and plagiarism. Taking someone else’s work without their consent, manipulating it without their consent, pretending it supports ID Creationists distorted views of reality, and presenting it as DI’s work.

ERV further points out that if the DI fellows responsible for this were at his her university, they would be expelled for their plagiarism.

But this is just business as usual at the Discovery Institute, and it raises a question: if the Discovery Institute can’t be trusted to produce independent academic scholarship on its signature issue, Intelligent Design, how can its Cascadia Center be trusted to produce independent academic scholarship on regional transportation planning? Of course, it can’t, and the media, business and political elites who ignore the institute’s established track record of distorting scholarship and science in the single-minded pursuit of its own private agenda, are little more than willful dupes.

Our region’s transportation planning is too important to be trusted to a faux “think tank” with such a shameful and embarrassing record, and every time one of our local media outlets unskeptically cites one of its reports or recommendations, it grants the Discovery Institute credibility it simply does not deserve. Unlike a real think tank, the Discovery Institute produces “scholarship” to support its existing agenda, not the other way around, and thus it cannot and should not be considered a trusted partner in planning our region’s transportation future.


  1. 4

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Am I imagining things, or is this thread a duplicate of “Discovery Institute: liars and thieves”?

  2. 5

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    I’ll Bet This Guy Is A Republican

    “Red Cross president forced out over ‘personal relationship’

    “(CNN) — Red Cross President and CEO Mark W. Everson has stepped down after revelations he was ‘engaged in a personal relationship with a subordinate employee,’ the organization announced Tuesday.”

    Quoted under fair use; for complete story and/or copyright info see http://www.cnn.com/2007/US/11/.....cnn_latest

  3. 7

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Here’s a delightful essay called “If Conservatism Is The Ideology Of Freedom I’m The Queen Of England”


    “I wish I had a nickel for every time a conservative told a lie in order to sell an ideology that would otherwise be hopelessly unappealing. But, then, … I wouldn’t know how to spend that much loot.

    “These lies are legend, and they’re endlessly retold. Everything from the one about the liberal bias in the media, or the one about Ronald Reagan ending the Cold War, to the one about how the private sector is so much more efficient than the government. …

    “I’m only just getting started here, but you get the point. If you’re a conservative you basically have two choices – lie or lose. ‘Cause if you tell the truth, no one in his or her right mind would buy the garbage you’re peddling.

    “The list of lies is endless, but my personal favorite is the one about how conservatism is the ideology of freedom, and specifically freedom from an overweening, intrusive, liberty-stealing, nanny-state government.

    “Sometimes when I hear that howler, I have to pinch myself …. But I’ll tell you what, if conservatism is the ideology of freedom – then I’m the Queen of England. …

    “Meanwhile, here’s what I’d like to know:

    “If conservatism is the ideology of freedom, how come they’re the ones who fought against the American Revolution?

    “If conservatism is the ideology of freedom, how come they’re the ones who are always trying to take that freedom away from us … ? Why did they fight against the effort to end slavery, or to give women and minorities the vote, or to protect them from discrimination? Why are they … supporting efforts to disenfranchise minorities? …

    “If conservatism is the ideology of freedom, how come they’re the ones who are always propping up foreign dictators, like Saddam, Musharraf, Mubarak, Marcos, Pinochet, the Shah, Batista, the House of Saud and apartheid South Africa? Why did they … secretly topple democratically elected governments to install repressive regimes, which they … assisted in the torturing of their own citizens? …

    “If conservatism is the ideology of freedom, how come they’re the ones who are always trying to control other people’s sexuality? Why are conservatives always telling us whom we can sleep with and what we can do in bed …?

    ” … If conservatism is the ideology of freedom, how come they’re the ones who are so anxious to take away our civil liberties … ?

    ” … If conservatism is the ideology of freedom, how come they’re the ones who are always trying to have the government jam their religion down our throats …?

    ” … If conservatism is the ideology of freedom, how come they’re the ones who are always telling me I should leave the country if I don’t approve the latest war … they’ve cooked up? How exactly does ‘shut-up or leave’ qualify as freedom of speech?

    “If conservatism is the ideology of freedom, how come they’re the ones who are constantly attempting to turn the executive branch of the federal government into a monarchy? …

    “Conservatism is, and has almost always been, the ideology of oppression ….

    “If you think these monsters who are depriving you of your liberties at every opportunity represent freedom, then you need to bow, scrape and walk backwards in my presence, as a sign of respect for the British crown. I’ll take a bunch of your money, too. Palaces aren’t cheap to maintain ….

    “Don’t you feel better now that you’re free after decades of Reagan, Gingrich, Bush, Cheney, DeLay and Scalia? You’re free to shut up with your unpopular ideas. … You’re also free to fall through the tattered safety net of government programs during a recession or a depression …. So whattaya think? Ain’t conservative freedom great?

    “Next time you hear a conservative ranting about the wonder and joys of freedom, tell them: ‘Yeah, no kidding, freedom is a really good thing. You’d like it even better if you actually tried it out some time’.”

    Quoted under fair use; for complete essay and/or copyright info see http://www.regressiveantidote......eedom.html

    It’s a regressive world out there. Sign-up here for your Weekly Antidote.Keep your eyes on the lies.

  4. 8


    Does your logic apply to everyone? If this person did this, can they be trusted to do that? Like with Martin Luther King Jr. He was a plagiarist. If you’re to be consistant, you would question his ability to lead the civil rights movement, right? And Bill Clinton lied under oath. I guess you would be asking if he can’t be trusted to tell the truth under oath, can he be trusted to run our nation. Just as long as you’re consistant in your logic, I can respect that. If you’re not consistant, and you stick your head in the sand when people who you agree with lie or cheat, that I have no respect for you.

  5. 9

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @8 It’s a good thing for Bush that presidents aren’t under oath when they make speeches to Congress asking for authorization to use military force.

  6. 10

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Hey! I Have An Idea! Why Didn’t Someone Think Of This Sooner?

    Before a president is allowed to address Congress, the Speaker holds a Bible, and the president puts one hand on the Bible and raises his other hand and says, “I swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, under penalties of perjury provided by law.”

  7. 11

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @8 Right now, this country needs consistent truth more than it needs consistent logic from its leader. You can’t expect a chimp to be logical.

  8. 14


    Of God and Plagiarism

    First, ltes deal with the assumption that there is A God, a one and only God, all other Gods being fictional.

    That being the case, and God being the creator of all, nothing God createth can be plagiarized.

    Of course, since Man (and WO man) have free will, we could plagiarize each other and God could impose penalties for this behavior. Here too, unfortunately there is a contradiction. No where in God assorted writings has she or he mentioned plagiarism … presumably because, as as singularity, the concept of other, as in an other person who copies my work, would make no sense to our God. To mkae matters worse we are created in God’s image. so we should not be capable of plagiarism either.

    Well, some might argue, God .. as a singular deity ,,,also can not steal either since he owns all. Yet God says we, his imperfect creations can steal and one might say that plagiarism is a type of stealing. So if God can condemn me to hell for stealing n apple, he can do so for plagiarism as well.

    While thios makes some sense, there is a special probhlme with pagiarism as a sort of theft, God never defines intellectual property. CLEARLY God understands that one’s wife is property, and steeling WO men is a big no no. But I do not remember any lace where God instructs us that content can be property. Indeed ..to the best of mu knoeldge, neither the Quran or the Torah mention intellectual property.

  9. 15

    Tlazolteotl spews:

    Man… I wish I had posted that.

    Well, at least Will got the gender of scientist ERV correct! ;-)

  10. 17

    FreewayLoversLoveSeattle spews:

    Roger Rabbit won’t have to spend much time looking into the Discovery Institute’s ridiculous transportation ideas before he figures out they mirror his own views.

  11. 18

    FreewayLoversLoveSeattle spews:

    One does not have to look very far to find our clueless roads+monorail+technogadget – centered transportation reporters, lapping up the Discovery Institute goo like it was liquid gold.

    KUOW is notorious for it’s anti-light rail bias – so they will take ANYTHING the Intelligent Design crowd feeds them.


    Here, we have fresh-out-of-j-school PI writer Lisa Stiffler claiming a Discovery Institute affiliated anti-transit group run by Discovery hack John Niles is “an environmental group.”


    If you’re a right wing think tank hack trying to get respect in a progressive pro-transit city, it’s this brand of lazy journalism which makes you smile. I’m sure John Niles’ sugardaddy Kemper Freeman gave him a nice pat on the back after that PI article went to print.

    But the seasoned PI reporter, Larry Lange, always manages to botch even the most simple story: can’t get the toll figures right on the front page, can’t figure out how to qualify big (complex!) projects requiring decades of financing. Lange can wrap his mind around shitty bus service and more pavement, so we don’t see any critical analysis of either Ron Sims’ budget-busting operations costs, or WSDOT’s massive cost over-runs.

  12. 19

    Bill spews:

    This posting, while pointing to the dishonesty and plagarism of whomever produced the video, really has nothing constructive to say about transportation policy.

    I am a progressive, a climate change activist, and involved in working to find sustainable solutions at work and my community.

    Yes, the Discovery Institute is very involved pushing Intelligent Design. As a former Biology Teacher I have many problems with this “theory”. Primarily, it is not really science, as it cannot be tested in any real fashon. Keep in mind however that Intelligent Design is at least an attempt to reconcile aspects of religion and science in a way that does not deny the existence of a fossil record. It’s a big step up from creationism. But still wrong.

    I forget the name, but the Discovery Istitute has even hosted a climate change denier for a seminar, which I view as an even greater travesty.

    However, in it’s tone, this posting runs counter to the purposes of NW Citizens coming together on good transit policy. For the most part, the merits of proposals of the Discovery Institute should be judged on their merits alone. We are tring to build coalitions on good policy, not divide! Their proposal to convert unused rail on the East Side to passenger/commuter use deserves close attention.

    A look at the Cascadia Transportation page includes proposals and promotion of: Plug-in Vehicles, Rail expansion, Renewable Energy, improvements to the Electical grid, and Bus Rapid Transit. All of these are suppported by a progressive approach to Energy.

    I feel that climate change is THE issue of the 21st century. If the religious and evangelicals want to get green, more power to them. Welcome to the tent.


  13. 20

    FreewayLoversLoveSeattle spews:

    Think tanks wouldn’t exist without willing media tools.

    The Discovery Institute’s biggest fan in the Seattle media has got to be Seattle Times reporter Mike Lindblom.

    Famous for his front page Blethen-approved hit pieces on light rail, Lindblom goes out of his way to report on the Discovery Institute’s idiotic non-solutions without even QUESTIONING the faulty logic behind their Reagan-inspired theories and claims – or even delving into whether these pin heads’ ideas would be the slightest bit effective.

    Here’s Lindblom doling out the Intelligently Designed cars slop:


    “The cars, for example, could be equipped with metered smart chips that could allow the batteries to sell back small amounts of electricity to the grid. Motorists might be able to earn several thousand dollars a year and also help stabilize the regional power system.”

    Yeah. Sure thing, Mike.

    Same conference, a year earlier – Lindblom writes the exact same puff piece for the anti-transit goons at Discovery:


    There wasn’t a single bit of discussion at Discovery’s “clean and green” conferences promoting mass transit – it was all about how solo drivers were going to save the planet (this is achieved by paving it first)

    Mike Lindblom also loved the Discovery Insitute’s third world country Bus Rapid Transit model (no mention, of course, that it could never be replicated here – and no mention 90% of the populations in these countries are 100% transit-dependent)


    “Seattle might think it’s green, but the pro-transit, pro-bicycling projects here look timid compared to Bogotá, Colombia.

    That city has built more than 200 miles of bicycle paths and a bus-rapid-transit system, the TransMilenio, that provides 1.3 million rides a day.

    Former Bogotá mayor Enrique Peñalosa explained how he did it Wednesday at a Seattle forum sponsored by the Discovery Institute think tank.

    His speech came a week after new cost estimates for a Seattle waterfront tunnel and a new Highway 520 floating bridge spiked to top-end figures of more than $5 billion each.

    And by choosing bus lanes instead of subways, the city could afford a much longer network.”

    No critical analysis whatsoever from Lindblom. Discovery goons wouldn’t want it any other way….

    Why, even the BRT ideologues have gone out of their way to avoid coming up with their own BRT plan. Weird, huh?

  14. 21

    FreewayLoversLoveSeattle spews:

    “However, in it’s tone, this posting runs counter to the purposes of NW Citizens coming together on good transit policy. For the most part, the merits of proposals of the Discovery Institute should be judged on their merits alone. We are tring to build coalitions on good policy, not divide!”

    Yeah, sure thing, Bill. That’s why the Discovery clowns who tell us the dinner train can be converted into the commuter train (all we need to do is shut that light rail project down) are the same ideologues who told us a couple years ago the light rail money should be diverted to FREEWAY MONORAIL, one of the most idiotic transportation ideas that ever came across the radar here in already flaky Seattle.

    You going to defend their I-5 lids and Lake Washington tubes next?

    “Coming together” is about proposing REAL solutions, not pointless concepts designed to create a wedge against viable solutions like light rail.

    You’re in La-La land if you think Discovery’s motives are pure.

  15. 22

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @17 “Roger Rabbit won’t have to spend much time looking into the Discovery Institute’s ridiculous transportation ideas before he figures out they mirror his own views.”

    Not so. I would support light rail that was done properly. On the other hand, I’m against Mrs. Rabbit buying a car — if what she wants is a Ferrarri costing $350,000 that gets 7 mpg. The devil is in the details. Phase 2 was ridiculously expensive, poorly designed, and — financed with other people’s money. (And in a way that would have hit the poor, senior citizens, and low income workers exceptionally hard.)

  16. 23

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    For example, it’s hard to defend making people in Everett start paying higher sales taxes today for light rail they won’t see for 20 years — because it’s indefensible. The fact I can’t justify that doesn’t make me a fellow traveler with the loons at Discovery Institute.

  17. 24

    Bill spews:


    Sheesh. Sorry to try to find some common ground on transporation.

    I didn’t know that solving the climate crisis and addressing peak oil was about “purity” of motives. I guess we can chuck Al Gore out the window too. I’ll take allies on the issue warts and all.

    So you are against Bus Rapid Transit – Bogata Style, against Plug-In Hybrids… just because of the Discovery Institute promoting them?

    Light Rail as proposed has big issues too. As in decades to complete, billions to complete, and number of people served per dollar of investment.

    Given the magnitude of the issues, I think it might be productive to lay aside the invective and talk policy nuts and bolts.

    For example, what are the impossible obstacles to a Bogata style system? Many greens find such ideas appealing:


    Are you a closet bus hater? Is light rail the only solution to all of your woes? Do tell.


  18. 25

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Some of my pro-Prop. 1 friends whine almost as much as Dinosourpuss! This is a good thing, not a bad thing. Liberals need to learn how to be bad sports. We’ve been good sports for far too long and the pushy right took that as license to walk all over us. This would be a far better country today if we had taken the lessons taught to us by our opponents to heart and:

    Kept Republicans from voting
    Sued if our candidates lost
    Rigged the voting machines in GOP counties
    Staged riots to intimidate canvassing boards
    Had our friends on the courts decide elections
    Appointed hack prosecutors to railroad our foes
    And, above all, whine, whine, whine

    We’ve been way too nice! No more Mr. Nice Guy! We need to take the gloves off and behave like Republicans! The time to be reasonable is after they’re all in concentration camps,* not when they’re stealing elections from us!

    * Just kidding! Ann Coulter originated this joke, and it has been a huge seller! I’m trying to make some money in the comedy business, too.

  19. 26

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @19 Intelligent Design is nothing more than a legal strategy dreamed up by lawyers in an effort to get around separation of church and state.

  20. 27

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @20 In case you haven’t noticed, I’ve criticized both the SR 99 tunnel and the 520 proposal for being grandiose, gold plated, and fantastically expensive. FCOL some folks even want to dig a tunnel under Lake Washington for the 520 approaches so they won’t have to look at or hear traffic — at other people’s expense, of course.

  21. 28

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @20 Would you kindly explain to me how it’s possible to pay for $11 billion of light rail* by taxing 1 million households $150 a year for 20 years?

    * I’m using the low-ball non-inflation-adjusted figure here; the actual estimate was $27 billion

    Hell, I’ll be you can’t even make it balance by taxing 1.5 million households $150 a year for 40 years.

  22. 29

    Bill spews:

    Roger Rabbit:

    I am familiar with the history of Intelligent Design. Methinks you are grossly oversimplifing it!


  23. 30

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @29 What, on this or any other blog, is not reduced to an “executive summary” in order to keep posts to a manageable length?

  24. 31

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Intelligent design, like the abiotic theory of oil, was invented because someone needed a theory to fit their preconceived ideas.

    “‘Intelligent design’ originated in response to the 1987 United States Supreme Court Edwards v. Aguilard ruling involving separation of church and state. …

    “Intelligent design deliberately does not try to identify or name the specific agent of creation …. Whether this lack of specificity about the designer’s identity in public discussions is a genuine feature of the concept, or just a posture taken to avoid alienating those who would separate religion from the teaching of science, has been a matter of great debate between supporters and critics of intelligent design. The Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District court ruling held the latter to be the case.”


    There seems to be a non-random coincidence of (a) Discovery Institute being the primary promoter of ID, and (b) DI being top-heavy with lawyers.

  25. 32

    FreewayLoversLoveSeattle spews:

    But wait, there’s more! Lindblom pitching the Discovery Institute’s ridiculous freeway monorail idea, and the DOA suburban monorail concept. With Lindblom, all you need is “a half dozen” dreamers, and VOILA! they get his kid gloves treatment, and a full length story:


    Another ’60s revival: running a monorail along Interstate 5

    During the 1962 World’s Fair, while tourists were boarding a new conveyance called a monorail, Gov. Albert Rosellini had a bigger dream: that elevated trains, running alongside yet-to-be-built Interstate 5, would reach the airport.

    He and fair chairman Eddie Carlson talked on several occasions about the virtues of extending the 1-mile tourist monorail south beyond downtown Seattle. But they were busy overseeing the fair, and two years later Rosellini lost his re-election bid to Dan Evans, who focused on finishing the freeway.

    In the past few months, however, the idea of a freeway monorail system has been resurrected by a half-dozen advocates who are running a Web site, meeting in cafes and lobbying political and business officials about the reasons to construct a regional monorail along I-5, from Everett to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

    “Our system is a trunk-line system,” says Jake Solomon, outreach coordinator for the Freeway Monorail group. “We want it to be a high-speed — I’m talking 60, 70 miles per hour — mass rapid-transit system connecting the cities of Puget Sound.”

    Freeway-monorail advocates seek to answer a question on the minds of many taxpayers these days: What would happen if the $2.1 billion required to build a downtown-to-Tukwila light-rail line and the $1.7 billion for a Ballard-to-West Seattle monorail were combined to assemble a really, really long transit line?

    However, there is not much political clout, and no funding source, for freeway monorail.

    Advocates are banking on a collapse of Sound Transit’s light-rail plan, and after the apocalypse, freeway monorail would fill the void.

    “We have to kill Sound Transit,” says Solomon. Well, not actually kill it, but pack the Sound Transit board with monorail sympathizers, or force the agency to study the freeway monorail plan in depth, he explains.


    Group pushes suburban monorail

    A new political-action committee is being formed to promote a $5 billion, 59-mile network of suburban monorails as an alternative to freeway expansions.

    The group hopes to build a suburban monorail movement resembling the recent campaign for city monorail in Seattle, activist Cleve Stockmeyer said yesterday. Stockmeyer envisions several months of community forums, followed by a $20 million planning effort to pin down the route and station details.

    In November, Seattle voters approved car-tab taxes to construct the $1.75 billion Green Line serving the western half of the city.

    But considering that the plan passed by only 877 votes, a suburban monorail effort would sound like a longshot given the reluctance of Eastside and South King County voters to raise taxes.

    Advocates reply that monorail compares favorably to highway-laden plans such as the failed Referendum 51 or an $11 billion widening of Interstate 405.

    “For half that cost, you could get regional monorail linking all the suburbs to Seattle,” Stockmeyer said. He said another selling point is a guaranteed 23-minute travel time from Redmond to Seattle, or 28 minutes from Federal Way to Renton.

    Freeway Monorail proponents hope to stop the $2.5 billion Sound Transit light-rail project and put that money into freeway monorail. Bruce Agnew, of the Discovery Institute, has endorsed a similar switch in technologies, though state Secretary of Transportation Doug MacDonald considers it virtually impossible to engineer a line along a freeway corridor.

    There is also support for other types of elevated transit, including:

    • Maglev. Patrick Johnston, of Ballard, has been encouraging politicians to consider a magnetic-levitation train that can exceed 200 mph in a north-south corridor. A maglev monorail in Shanghai, China, will open this year.

    • Personal Rapid Transit (PRT). Small, four- to six-person vehicles would be suspended from lightweight guideways, traveling at high speed. Passengers would select their stops by computer. PRT cars could operate as shuttles between regional transit stations and crowded destinations such as the University District, or citywide above arterial streets, supporters say.

  26. 33

    OneMan spews:

    There is no defense for ID. It isn’t science and has no place in the classroom (or anywhere else, with the possible exception of a comedy club).

    ID is thinly disguised creationism; in fact the book “Of Pandas and People”, the ID proponents’ preferred textbook, started out as a creationist tome and was only changed to attempt to put a veneer of science over the god-bothering in order to get by the Edwards v. Aguillard decision.

    That, friends, was proven in court (the ACLU got access to early drafts of the book where literally the words “design proponents” were substituted for “creationists”, often badly, resulting in the famed “cdesign proponentsists” gaffe.

    Wingers need better editors! Not to mention better thinkers.

  27. 35

    FreewayLoversLoveSeattle spews:

    “Sheesh. Sorry to try to find some common ground on transporation. ”

    Yeah, right, Bill. It would be common ground if the BRT activists and Woodinville subdivision activists were really supporting multi-modal solutions (ie, like every other major metro region in the country). Instead, your ilk is promoting mode wars – pitting one technology against another. Not to mention half the BRT crowd doesn’t even like BRT (see: NoToProp1 campaign). They just pretend, and use buses as a wedge against light rail every time light rail is on the ballot, or some stupid frivlous lawsuit is being litigated.

    “I didn’t know that solving the climate crisis and addressing peak oil was about “purity” of motives. I guess we can chuck Al Gore out the window too. I’ll take allies on the issue warts and all.”

    Not sure what you’re driving at, Bill. But I can tell you you’re not going to reduce GHG per passenger with enormously heavy and fuel-inefficient diesel buses. Why you you think Ron Sims and his gaggle of climate consultants refuses to do any analysis whatsoever on his own fleet and routes? Running large, empty buses around the ‘burbs for political reasons isn’t about purity. It’s about politics and ego.

    “So you are against Bus Rapid Transit – Bogata Style, against Plug-In Hybrids… just because of the Discovery Institute promoting them?”

    I’m not against either. I’m against clowns like you defying the data, and trying to pretend you can mimic a transit-dependent developing country’s bus system in Seattle, where cars outnumber people. Plug in hybrids are fine, too, but cleaner/greener cars which are cheaper to operate will only increase congestion, not reduce it.

    “Light Rail as proposed has big issues too. As in decades to complete, billions to complete, and number of people served per dollar of investment.”

    A whole decade? Gee, sounds like a lifetime. Can you sound any more self-centered?

    “For example, what are the impossible obstacles to a Bogata style system? Many greens find such ideas appealing:”

    Well, for one thing, Seattle lacks something called “right of way.” It also lacks large boulevards which can be swept of cars through top-down hardline politics. And, as I mentioned earlier, when 7-9 out of ten residents does not own a car, it’s real easy to jam bus riders into cattle cars. Hint for Bill: we’re not in Bogota.

    “Are you a closet bus hater? Is light rail the only solution to all of your woes? Do tell.”

    No and no. As stated earlier, my major complaint with your ilk is the false information and false promises you spread. No other major North American city has relied on an all-bus system, or tried to even pretend high capacity grade-separated rail isn’t going to be part of the mix.

    Bus “rapid” transit is nothing more than snake oil when you get right down to it: if the anti-transit activists who push this garbage decided they wanted to be honest for a day, and compare apples to apples, they would be forced to acknowledge true grade-separated BRT costs just as much as light rail would, if you want to achieve the same level of speed and reliability.

    If all you’re pushing is the same-old buses stuck in traffic, be honest with the voters. And they will respond by roundly rejecting your ideas. My advice to you: stay conceptual, stay third world, and stay pie-in-the-sky. The second BRT ideologues come back down to earth, they lose the argument. Why do you think nobody has ever proposed a BRT plan for the region? The boys over at Kemper Development Co. have spent a couple million so far opposing light rail. One would think that if they REALLY believed BRT could serve as an effective alternative to light rail, somebody would propose something someday….

    How’s about you, Bill? Got an idea for BRT on a major congested corridor?

  28. 36

    Puddybud spews:

    Pelletizer(TM)@25: This worthless pile of pellets given from the same “rabid rabbit” whom called Cuyahoga County a Republican county until I proved that from dog catcher to county mgr, the county is led by the DONK!

    Good try Pelletizer(TM). You can fool the simple minded all of the time but some of us think it through!

  29. 37


    If it weren’t for Kemper Freeman (sp?) and some fundamentalist software developers there wouldn’t be a Discovery Institute in Seattle. The real estate mogul is all about sprawl and the money that that brings for him. The thinly disguised creationism they flog to the unaware and uneducated is the worst sort of science fraud. All agenda and no science.

    PZ Myers blog Pharyngula ( http://www.scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/ ) follows this outfit closely, and is always entertaining.