Another Point 2.0

Ok. I’m back to mass transit. Couldn’t resist.

From Ezra Klein comes this passage: Incidentally, I keep forgetting to point out that though millions of Americans have switched to public transit in response to rising fuel costs, the number who have is almost certainly a very small fraction of the number who would like to. If all you’ve got in the pantry is a cookie, you’re not going to an apple. There’s a tendency to look at the relatively small proportion of the country that uses public transit and assume that those numbers accurately express consumer preferences. But consumer preferences are governed by viable options, and in most areas of the country, public transit isn’t a very viable option. Indeed, it doesn’t even exist. But as you see from Portland, DC, New York, Boston, and others, when folks can take the train, they often do. And given that we all agree that taking the trains is environmentally and economically preferable, we should give them that option.

Read the rest here.


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