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Red Necks and Green Cycle Lanes – Alistair Coe Sets Out to Incite Hatred Against Cyclists

By Horrid 28 June 2009 34

Liberal TAMS spokesman Alistair Coe clearly believes that inciting hatred against cyclists by complaining about the cost of green paint on cycle lanes (Canberra Sunday Times 28 June p,11- sorry not on-line) is smart politics. After all, given that the average cost per annum is about 36 cents per Canberran, and the massive benefits cycle lanes bring to our city in improving road safety and reducing traffic congestion, pollution and parking shortages, it can’t seriously be about financial management- this is just a pretext.  

Coe has clearly learnt nothing from his predecessor Steve Pratt, who adopted similar tactics in attacking cycle lanes and calling for their removal, for purely political reasons based on presumed electoral appeal to the motoring majority.

The tactic was fundamentally flawed;  firstly, many drivers appreciate the benefits of cycle lanes even if they still choose to drive; and secondly, the lanes have not created anywhere near the level of inconvenience to drivers that anyone other than hardened bigots would have changed their vote on the issue.

Conversely, many bicycle riders, and their families, voted on this single issue – their lives literally depended on it. The Liberals produced an excellent cycling policy on the eve of the 2008 election, but it was too late- years of attacking cycle lanes had already cost them thousands of cycling votes, and Pratt himself lost his seat by several hundred votes, with Liberal voting cyclists playing a crucial role in his ejection.  

Coe should take note of this recent history, set aside the politics of hatred, and concentrate on good sustainable transport policy if he really wants to improve the Liberals chances at the next election- and keep his own seat.

[ED – once more with feeling]

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34 Responses to
Red Necks and Green Cycle Lanes – Alistair Coe Sets Out to Incite Hatred Against Cyclists
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astrojax 3:26 pm 29 Jun 09

i’m with you, jakez, let’s make ’em read some aristotle. it’ll do ’em good. and mebbe some russell or quine just for good measure.

i did like the ducks bit of this thread, though…

monomania 2:08 pm 29 Jun 09

Anna Key garbled:

Personally, i’m getting sick of footpaths too. The way pedestrians think they have some kind of right to use them, not to mention their overwhelming smugness because they walk. All that money wasted on concrete and then the maintenance. Can’t they be removed and replaced with a road-widening scheme.

Like cyclists, pedestrians who walk rather than drive also benefit from their type of locomotion but I have not heard them raving on about how wonderful they are and how much they benefit the rest of us. And since most of us are pedestrians most of us are not smug about walking.

Nowhere in my comment did I suggest that the cycle paths should be removed, just that they should be constructed properly and used if present. A pedestrian could be charged with jay walking if they were to walk in the road blocking other traffic particularly if there was a place provided for them to walk such as a footpath or pedestrian crossing. Cycle lanes are now provided for cyclists.

jakez 9:38 am 29 Jun 09

I’m so embarassed to be a cyclist right now.

Rednecks? Give me a break. I mean I’m not expecting you all to read Aristotle’s The Art of Rhetoric, but there has to be some minimum standard to debate.

Anna Key 8:49 am 29 Jun 09

monomania said :

Other than road safety any significant benefit is to the health and wallets of cyclists. The claim that society as a whole benefits to any significant degree is spurious and only in the minds of cyclists, a justification for their feelings of superiority. If properly constructed and cyclists made by law to ride within them if they are present, I support these cycle lanes.

Whether expensive green paint is necessary on parts of the cycle paths is debatable and I guess that is all Coe wants to do.

Personally, i’m getting sick of footpaths too. The way pedestrians think they have some kind of right to use them, not to mention their overwhelming smugness because they walk. All that money wasted on concrete and then the maintenance. Can’t they be removed and replaced with a road-widening scheme.

monomania 8:27 pm 28 Jun 09

Horrid said:

After all, given that the average cost per annum is about 36 cents per Canberran, and the massive benefits cycle lanes bring to our city in improving road safety and reducing traffic congestion, pollution and parking shortages, it can’t seriously be about financial management- this is just a pretext.

Other than road safety any significant benefit is to the health and wallets of cyclists. The claim that society as a whole benefits to any significant degree is spurious and only in the minds of cyclists, a justification for their feelings of superiority. If properly constructed and cyclists made by law to ride within them if they are present, I support these cycle lanes. Whether expensive green paint is necessary on parts of the cycle paths is debatable and I guess that is all Coe wants to do.

harley 8:20 pm 28 Jun 09

haha, how’d I do that??

harley 8:19 pm 28 Jun 09

[ED – once more with feeling]

ED says it all, really…

No point me adding my opinion on cyclists, I’ll just add one on ranters…

they suck. Unless I agree with them, then they rock.

bigred 7:55 pm 28 Jun 09

To Northbourne Ultimatum, the intent of the Streeton changes is recognised. Unfortunately the law of unintended consequences is alive and well. It is now dangerous for everyone (including those crossing it from Namatjira). I have given up on it and now go via Hindmarsh at busy times.

Pandy 7:33 pm 28 Jun 09

Fanatical cyclist, just do not realize that they stink of sweat. I have had to tell blokes at work or ride to work, get a shower.

bd84 7:20 pm 28 Jun 09

Painting the cycle lanes green is a waste of money, it doesn’t improve the cycle lane in any way nor does it help in getting drivers to give way to cyclists dawdling along in them. I have no problems with them creating on road cycle lanes to assist those with a death wish, however making the existing car lanes thinner to a point where a truck cannot safely occupy the lane or removing lanes like on Stretton drive is rediculous and is mostly sheer stupidity.

Clown Killer 7:17 pm 28 Jun 09

Though if you wanted to attract ducks, a trench filled with water might be better than a strip of green paint.

Don’t even go there. We get enough greif from the cyclists – if you put a trench filled with water in you’ll only encourage kayakers and god knows we don’t want that!

Fisho 6:56 pm 28 Jun 09

Full Tilt said :

But they are painting them GREEN! Which ducks mistake for GRASS!

Won’t anyone think of the ducks?!?

Relax, ducks are adaptable. Recently I witnessed a duck fight off some seagulls and munch on some fish guts from a fish I had just cleaned.

If a few ducks get squished in a green lane the other ducks will soon clear up the mess, resulting in smarter, stronger ducks.

Though if you wanted to attract ducks, a trench filled with water might be better than a strip of green paint.

Deckard 6:21 pm 28 Jun 09

Maybe the libs are getting their policies from scrolling through the archives on RiotAct.

Next we’ll see laws cracking down on burnouts, kids starting stupid Facebook sites, rude cafe staff and shops overcharging for pizza.

Oh, and hopefully one outlawing all those ducks!!

Wraith 6:10 pm 28 Jun 09

Bunnings has the paint on special at the moment, is this going to affect the Lib’s study??

Why don’t we all go paint cycle lanes in the car park outside the assembly building, so they can’t park their cars, that would be just golden to see the looks on their faces.

Admit it, its tempting………

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