Sheep who drive cars, and those who support them

 
  DirtyBallast Chief Commissioner

Location: I was here first. You're only visiting.
[Rant]
I am sick to the gills of the smeg-tard, solo-travelling, car driving commuter set labelling Melbourne's road system as inadequate when incidents like the following occur, the sensationalist tabloid knee-jerk reactions or opinions put forward as 'solutions' and the opportunism of dumb politicians pandering to the gullible electorate.

This is the topical incident:  [color=#0000ff][size=3][font=Calibri]http://au.news.yahoo.com/vic/latest/a/-/newshome/17203468/truck-crash-on-melbourns-bolte-bridge/[/font][/size][/color]

Many have put placed their opinions on social or other media since then. The majority of them are misguided in MY opinion:


Banning trucks from the right lane is impossible for that section of road as it forms an exit ramp shortly thereafter;
If a car driver could not be bothered with head checks, he should not be licensed;
Just because a freeway/tollway exists, doesn’t mean you have to use it;
Any road is a truck driver’s workplace – any road is not a commuter’s workplace. Get out of his way;
Even if every 4th driver gave someone a lift to his similarly pristine office job in the city, traffic would flow as easily as it does on a Construction Sector RDO Monday – a real difference;
The proposed East/West link would not be used by any city bound driver in preference to the Bolte Bridge period and would not have provided any significant difference to this particular incident.

Of course, any adequate PT solution would minimise impact for those commuters in any case.
[/Rant]



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  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
Single-occupant vehicles are the problem but you'll never get action on it.

As soon as that truck accident happened I knew there would be a link drawn between that and the proposed East-West tunnel, even though with limited exits I'm not sure if it would have made a fig of difference.  It will be sold to the public as the solution to end all our problems and I think people will buy it even though there's been some spectacular and expensive Public-Private Partnership failures recently (Clem 7, Cross-City, Lane Cove). Then there was that ridiculous proposal a few years ago to put overpasses along Hoddle Street - don't they realise it will still be bottlenecked?  You can only cram so many cars into the city at peak hour.

Personally I'm really unhappy with the madness of our gridlocked streets and I can't see how it's going to get better.  You can't seem to convince people that an improved rail system will help alleviate the pressure on the roads, all they want is more and more roads.
  TheBlacksmith Chief Commissioner

Location: Ankh Morpork
[Rant]
If a car driver could not be bothered with head checks, he should not be licensed;
Just because a freeway/tollway exists, doesn’t mean you have to use it;
Any road is a truck driver’s workplace – any road is not a commuter’s workplace. Get out of his way;
Even if every 4th driver gave someone a lift to his similarly pristine office job in the city, traffic would flow as easily as it does on a Construction Sector RDO Monday – a real difference;
[/Rant]
DirtyBallast
Similarly, the truck and dog drivers who tailgate others should not be licensed either.

If you are driving any vehicle you have the absolute right to use any freeway or tollway. It is not owned by truck drivers.

How do you know that the driver of the other vehicle was not employed to be on the road every day as part of his job, in which case it is his workplace as well?

You are making a lot of un-informed assumptions about this incident, you do not know the other driver 'could not be bothered with head checks' and have this odd idea that anyone in a car is a sub-standard driver. A typical truck-driver's view of the world.

According to you, car drivers are sheep. According to all motorcycle riders/cyclists, all car drivers are idiots. According to all truck drivers, car drivers are idiots. According to any young car driver, all other car drivers are idiots. As a result, there is no respect on the road for any other driver, and that is a serious issue.
  Valvegear Dr Beeching

Location: Norda Fittazroy
A major problem we have on the roads is that a huge number of people drive as though nothing can possibly go wrong.
When something does . . . Crash !
  cootanee Chief Commissioner

Location: North of the border!
A major problem we have on the roads is that a huge number of people drive as though nothing can possibly go wrong.
When something does . . . Crash !
Valvegear

Our road network has millions of operators - one brain explosion and it's all over...

Mind you we have a tax system which encourages car centric travel with the salary packaged MVs the norm now (but GST on that public transport ticket Rolling Eyes )
  CraigW Assistant Commissioner

Our road network has millions of operators - one brain explosion and it's all over...

Mind you we have a tax system which encourages car centric travel with the salary packaged MVs the norm now (but GST on that public transport ticket Rolling Eyes )
cootanee

Cootanee,

I work approx 36 km from home. i start at 0700 hours and the drive typically takes me 35-40 minutes. To do the same trip by train I need to catch the 0500 train from home, change to another train - then a bus and would still not get to work by 0700.

That is why people drive - at least in Sydney.

Craig w
  littleal9 Train Controller

Location: bellambi
Similarly, the truck and dog drivers who tailgate others should not be licensed either.

If you are driving any vehicle you have the absolute right to use any freeway or tollway. It is not owned by truck drivers.

How do you know that the driver of the other vehicle was not employed to be on the road every day as part of his job, in which case it is his workplace as well?

You are making a lot of un-informed assumptions about this incident, you do not know the other driver 'could not be bothered with head checks' and have this odd idea that anyone in a car is a sub-standard driver. A typical truck-driver's view of the world.

According to you, car drivers are sheep. According to all motorcycle riders/cyclists, all car drivers are idiots. According to all truck drivers, car drivers are idiots. According to any young car driver, all other car drivers are idiots. As a result, there is no respect on the road for any other driver, and that is a serious issue.
TheBlacksmith
I ride a motorcycle and drive a car, the only other drivers I trust on the road are truck drivers, not small trucks(couriers etc) but large trucks, never had a problem when driving near them, just use common sense and give them room to stop, turn etc. Smaller trucks just seem to use their bulk to intimidate other people and change lanes when ever they feel like it.

Just my opinion, born from over 30 years of road use.
  TheBlacksmith Chief Commissioner

Location: Ankh Morpork
Just to add to that, I drive a car, and also hold a motorcycle and Heavy Combination licence. I don't ride the cycle too much these days, as I have no need to, nor do I drive a truck that often these days either. But I do not subscribe to the idea that other drivers are any less worthy of being on the road.

I also live in the country, where public transport is of no use to me at all, as it cannot take me where I need to go. Not that I dislike it, on the rare occasions I need to travel into Melbourne, I will use V/Line to get me there.
  cootanee Chief Commissioner

Location: North of the border!
Cootanee,

I work approx 36 km from home. i start at 0700 hours and the drive typically takes me 35-40 minutes. To do the same trip by train I need to catch the 0500 train from home, change to another train - then a bus and would still not get to work by 0700.

That is why people drive - at least in Sydney.

Craig w
CraigW

Not everyone otherwise those trains would be empty.

The point being how many extra cars are on the road because of the tax incentive to do so.

P.S. Try 60km, 3 or 4 changes, 2 hours each way and 30 years of war stories to go with it - but then I don't have a novated lease.
  Graham4405 Minister for Railways

Location: Dalby Qld
I also live in the country, where public transport is of no use to me at all, as it cannot take me where I need to go.
TheBlacksmith
This is one of my hobby horses. Just because we live in the Country we are denied useful public transport options. Just today I mentioned this to the CEO of our Council.
  Aaron Minister for Railways

Location: University of Adelaide SA
The point being how many extra cars are on the road because of the tax incentive to do so.
"cootanee"

What are these tax incentives you speak of? I am not aware of any tax incentive to travel by car, 99.999999% of road users would be on the road because of necessity (or practicality) and convenience, probably in that order.
  Carnot Chief Commissioner

The thing is our large cities are designed/sprawled out in such a way to make driving virtually a necessity.  This also extends to freight.  For example - name a supermarket or shopping centre which gets its products shipped directly to its door via rail?

PT works well if your wealthy enough to live in the inner city or you happen to work there.

What really needs to change is this idea that medium-long distance freight has to be trucked.  This only adds to clogging up our cities.
  DirtyBallast Chief Commissioner

Location: I was here first. You're only visiting.
Similarly, the truck and dog drivers who tailgate others should not be licensed either.

If you are driving any vehicle you have the absolute right to use any freeway or tollway. It is not owned by truck drivers.

How do you know that the driver of the other vehicle was not employed to be on the road every day as part of his job, in which case it is his workplace as well?

You are making a lot of un-informed assumptions about this incident, you do not know the other driver 'could not be bothered with head checks' and have this odd idea that anyone in a car is a sub-standard driver. A typical truck-driver's view of the world.

According to you, car drivers are sheep. According to all motorcycle riders/cyclists, all car drivers are idiots. According to all truck drivers, car drivers are idiots. According to any young car driver, all other car drivers are idiots. As a result, there is no respect on the road for any other driver, and that is a serious issue.
TheBlacksmith
Good, debatable points.

Tailgating, caused by impeding traffic, is a problem regardless of the vehicle driven. It is a cause-and-effect situation. it should NOT occur, but it does, and can be easily minimised.  

Car drivers indeed seem to think that if a freeway/tollway exists, they must use it.

I will concede that a tiny percentage of single-occupant cars may be in fact be instantaneously at work; a further percentage of car drivers are busily 'working' at eating their breakfast or applying their make-up!!! But 100% of truck drivers are at work, which is something that all but a tiny minority of car drivers recognise. The payback would be for a truckie to go to an office block somewhere and stand or walk in front of an office worker all day, perhaps tripping them over every now and then, basically just taking their space. Imagine the resulting tantrums from the Miss Prissy's!

It has been well documented that the car driver merged in to the truck driver's lane, clipping the truck and forcing the truck driver to take evasive action which almost ultimately resulted in his death.

Yes, I totally agree that the lack of respect for drivers of different vehicles is an issue - which is why I do the right thing by truck drivers.
  DirtyBallast Chief Commissioner

Location: I was here first. You're only visiting.
What really needs to change is this idea that medium-long distance freight has to be trucked.  This only adds to clogging up our cities.
Carnot
And that car-travelling commuters should car pool!
  David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: "With Hey Boy".
The unfortunate thing with any vehicle on the road is that they all have blind spots, it does not take much to get a vehicle into one of these blind spots though and that is sometimes when an accident happens like this. Also some drivers cannot comprehend that a rear view mirror distorts the image in it. It looks smaller so therefore you assume it is further back than it really is. The last part has to do with a lot of drivers though of any thing that is "Stuff you Jack, I am alright" or "Matter of fact I do own the road" these last two seem to be endemic at most times.
  Aaron Minister for Railways

Location: University of Adelaide SA
And that car-travelling commuters should car pool!
"DirtyBallast"

There's a problem with that, none of my neighbours work anywhere near where I do, and none of my colleagues live anywhere near me.
  Calgully Deputy Commissioner

Location:
What are these tax incentives you speak of? I am not aware of any tax incentive to travel by car, 99.999999% of road users would be on the road because of necessity (or practicality) and convenience, probably in that order.
Aaron

Novated Leases are a rort to increase car sales and petrol usage.

In essence, they allow high paid employees to use pre-tax income to get a car at very favourable prices.

And its worse than that because the way these schemes are structured they actually encourage you to travel further than you might want to by having stepped tax discount rates based on distance travelled in an FBT year.  So if you've travelled 14000 or 24000km in the 11 months to March each year - it's in your interest to go out and drive up your km to get past the hurdle - the last 2000km cost you drive each year costs you NEGATIVE

Secondly, they're structured to make it hard for you to get out of them by making it more expensive to give your car back at the end of a four year lease than it is to upgrade to a new car.  Yes, believe it or not that's true.  They do this by structuring a residual payment for the car - say $15,000 that you have to pay to buy out your 4yo car - whereas if you trade it in on a new car you dont need to pay the residual.  The kicker is that usually the residual is less than the sale value of the car at that age.  So what do you think most people chose?  Pay $15k to get a 4yo car, or pay nothing to get a new car.

These things are genuine masterpieces of political engineering.  Whomever designed them had more front than Myers, and what's more whoever agreed to them must have been truly thick.

The nett effect is that we all pay for this through our taxes
  Graham4405 Minister for Railways

Location: Dalby Qld
There's a problem with that, none of my neighbours work anywhere near where I do, and none of my colleagues live anywhere near me.
Aaron
A colleague of mine lives directly across the road from me. We sit less than 10m apart at our desks. But we rarely start or finish work at the same time...
  Aaron Minister for Railways

Location: University of Adelaide SA
A colleague of mine lives directly across the road from me. We sit less than 10m apart at our desks. But we rarely start or finish work at the same time...
"Graham4405"

That's something too, my girlfriend has a negotiated work day, 7 hours 21 minutes of work time, so long as she starts before 10am and finishes before 9pm she can do what she likes. Most of her colleagues have the same rules.
  cootanee Chief Commissioner

Location: North of the border!
Novated Leases are a rort to increase car sales and petrol usage.

In essence, they allow high paid employees to use pre-tax income to get a car at very favourable prices.

And its worse than that because the way these schemes are structured they actually encourage you to travel further than you might want to by having stepped tax discount rates based on distance travelled in an FBT year.  So if you've travelled 14000 or 24000km in the 11 months to March each year - it's in your interest to go out and drive up your km to get past the hurdle - the last 2000km cost you drive each year costs you NEGATIVE

Secondly, they're structured to make it hard for you to get out of them by making it more expensive to give your car back at the end of a four year lease than it is to upgrade to a new car.  Yes, believe it or not that's true.  They do this by structuring a residual payment for the car - say $15,000 that you have to pay to buy out your 4yo car - whereas if you trade it in on a new car you dont need to pay the residual.  The kicker is that usually the residual is less than the sale value of the car at that age.  So what do you think most people chose?  Pay $15k to get a 4yo car, or pay nothing to get a new car.

These things are genuine masterpieces of political engineering.  Whomever designed them had more front than Myers, and what's more whoever agreed to them must have been truly thick.

The nett effect is that we all pay for this through our taxes
Calgully
Definitely a political sacred cow now.

Many medium-large employers (both private and public) these days offer salary sacrifice which includes various 'tax effective' MV schemes notably novated leases. Of course contrast that with GST paid on public transport Rolling Eyes
  don_dunstan Minister for Railways

Location: Adelaide proud
To further add to what Calgully said about car leases - I used to work for a charity where it was basically compulsory to have a novated lease car because most jobs involved outreach.  The employer used to use the 'salary packaged car' option as an excuse for paying at the very lowest end of the pay-scale and if you didn't take the option of the car you were generally out of pocket by a few grand a year.  There's also that perverse incentive system where the more you drive the less FBT you have to pay, so you often had staff members driving their work car to Queensland or Perth on holidays to try and get their FBT down before the end of the financial year.

One of the scams that was common at that workplace was actually buying out the car at the end of the lease (say for $15,000) and then selling it on the private market for $20,000.  The lease company sold you the vehicle for whatever the list-price was given the age and kilometres but (as Calgully said) often your second-hand car was  worth more than that so as a private individual you had a chance to make money tax-free and off the books; you also get another brand-new car straight away as part of your package.  Either way the whole thing is geared towards consumption and rewarding over-use.

The tax advantages of leasing your car for work really makes you look like a total fool if you opt to take public transport.
  TheBlacksmith Chief Commissioner

Location: Ankh Morpork
Car drivers indeed seem to think that if a freeway/tollway exists, they must use it.
DirtyBallast
What is your point? You seem to be saying that car drivers should stay off freeways or tollways.
  cootanee Chief Commissioner

Location: North of the border!
To further add to what Calgully said about car leases - I used to work for a charity where it was basically compulsory to have a novated lease car because most jobs involved outreach.  The employer used to use the 'salary packaged car' option as an excuse for paying at the very lowest end of the pay-scale and if you didn't take the option of the car you were generally out of pocket by a few grand a year.  There's also that perverse incentive system where the more you drive the less FBT you have to pay, so you often had staff members driving their work car to Queensland or Perth on holidays to try and get their FBT down before the end of the financial year.

One of the scams that was common at that workplace was actually buying out the car at the end of the lease (say for $15,000) and then selling it on the private market for $20,000.  The lease company sold you the vehicle for whatever the list-price was given the age and kilometres but (as Calgully said) often your second-hand car was  worth more than that so as a private individual you had a chance to make money tax-free and off the books; you also get another brand-new car straight away as part of your package.  Either way the whole thing is geared towards consumption and rewarding over-use.

The tax advantages of leasing your car for work really makes you look like a total fool if you opt to take public transport.
don_dunstan

Exactly - it's a positive incentive for people to buy cars and use them as often as possible. More traffic, accelerating demand on infrastructure more guvmnt spending to catch up. One the one hand they lose revenue whilst having to spend more on the other - crazy Rolling Eyes

Meanwhile GST on public transport, but then again GST is a regressive tax so why is that any surprise, nor the fact that it isn't tax deductable.
  michaelgreenhill Administrator That's Numberwang!

Location: Melbourne
Single-occupant vehicles are the problem but you'll never get action on it.
don_dunstan
Twaddle. Bad drivers are the problem, and they'll exist no matter how many people you put in the car. Additionally, what about people who cannot carpool? I regularly drive solo from the eastern suburbs of Melbourne through to Geelong or Seymour - are you suggesting I should be removed from the toll roads, which I'm paying to use?
  michaelgreenhill Administrator That's Numberwang!

Location: Melbourne
What is your point? You seem to be saying that car drivers should stay off freeways or tollways.
TheBlacksmith
Agreed. People should be using freeways and tollways, otherwise they're a complete waste of money - and I know how much some people here like to whinge about wasting taxpayer's money....

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