Friday, July 2, 2010

Should We Feel Bad For Long-Haul Commuters?

It seems like every week, there's a new article telling us we should feel bad for long-drive commuters. Take, for example, this new Reuters article is titled Hate your commute? Then pity workers in Beijing, Mexico City. It reports on the results of the IBM Commuter Pain Study, saying traffic's getting worse, people hate it, and it's affecting their professional performance & personal health.

However, it closes with this:
But despite the frustrations and the economic downturn, few commuters had changed the way they go to work with 84 percent saying the financial crisis had not stopped them driving to work.

"Even though commuters say the traffic is getting worse, for some reason people seem fond of their cars," said Lamba who hoped the information from the survey could be used by transport officials to better understand and manage traffic flow.
So basically, long-drive commuters hate their commute so much, they aren't changing a thing. And that would be fine, except we're constantly being told by elected officials how we have to spend more tax dollars to ease the commutes of people who are doing nothing to ease their own commuting pain.

Should we help people who won't help themselves? I know there are few transit options in the far-out suburbs, but if there was public outcry, the options would be there. This study seems to indicate people would rather sit in their cars & complain than carpool or lobby for new a bus route.


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