Transportation Improvements: Convincing Conservatives

I saw this mentioned on Fresh Loaf yesterday, but Brian reminded me of it this morning.

The SaportaReport relays a talk given by William Lind, director of the American Conservative Center for Public Transportation in Arlington VA, to the Sustainable Atlanta Roundtable back on June 3rd, which points out that while liberals are most well-known for their near-sexual attraction to public transportation, it’s actually an issue that transcends party affiliation.  Some really juicy quotes in this one…

“You can’t get conservative votes with liberal arguments,” Lind said. For example, they should not utter the word — environment. Instead, they should talk about conservation and stewardship. “Vocabulary is important.”

Lind is a big proponent of rail transit rather than traditional city buses. “Very few conservatives will ride buses,” Lind said. “Rail can provide a quality of service to compete with cars.”

Also…

Lind said conservatives also will embrace the national security argument for transit.

“One third of our defense budget can be traced back to our dependence on foreign oil,” Lind said. But that dependence can be reduced by bringing back rail transit. “Let’s rebuild the network we had back in the 1950s. All we want to do is get back to what we had.”

Now since this was a political tactics talk, it sorta comes off as putting one over on conservatives wary of public transit.  But looking beneath the “here’s how we get it passed!” rhetoric, there are quite a few facts that are often overlooked in conversations about transit in favor of clinging to old misconceptions.  Examples?  There just happens to be a concise list in the article!

Continue reading “Transportation Improvements: Convincing Conservatives”

Bring Your Own Wine? Mayor Thinks It’s Fine!

Is there anything worse than a rhyming post title?  I don’t think so.

Anyway, the Mayor ended last night’s Decatur City Commission meeting with a few thoughts that he had noted on his smartphone.  One was the current law which makes it illegal to bring your own bottle of wine to a restaurant and pay a “corking fee” to drink it at the table.  (There was originally some confusion as to whether this was indeed illegal, but the City Manager verified it with a head-nod.)

You may remember that this very topic was brought up in a FFAF conversation back in January.  The owner of Cafe Alsace explained to an unhappy resident that bringing your own wine to a restaurant was currently illegal in Decatur and that while some other restaurants might allow it, she followed the law.

Well, it sounds like she brought the issue up with Mayor Floyd, who mentioned he had a conversation with the owner of Cafe Alsace about the law and stated his desire to change it, due in part because it was difficult to enforce.  Mayor Pro-Tem Baskett also stated his preference for changing the law.

In an alcohol-based economy like this one, I’m surprised such a law has lasted this long.