Monday, 15 June 2009

Car Logic

This piece of film is possibly as good as it gets in being controversial, inspirational and compelling.

It's via
Faris and it's awesome. Will it do the trick? That's up to us not the corporations. It's about personal decisions to run, walk, cycle or take public transport if the car or more accurately the internal combustion engine is ever to be sidelined as the single most extravagant commitment to our own demise in the history of history and remainder of future.

What is Honda doing about this? They're making provocative film, which is to be applauded because it does at least encourage people to reframe their relationship with 20th century technology that is mostly stationery (parked) and then when being used is mostly empty.

So we're stealing from our children. But they may not have anything to look back at and moan about if that pricks your conscience.

I don't know if we have 80 years because the whole point of the Long now project is we stopped dreaming about the future as we may have tipped the carbon scales against us while snorting the fossil ones that are evidently so addictive.

But I tend towards optimism. 

In any case like I wrote back here, we built our cities around cars instead of around people and it seems like Honda have recognised that's a bad thing although they could start by mentioning the Toyota Winglet if they weren't so self obsessed. No doubt Toyota would be just as solipsistic. It's how greed works.

But I'm also somewhat pessimistic  when it comes to specifically car culture because even though there are clearly some awesome dudes in this piece of film (the Alpha male? - you rock) the best way Honda et al could change the world would be for the automobile manufacturers to collectively lobby government in a self imposed manner and clip their wings by imposing HUGE penalties unless they make standard, low emission, tax incentivised hybrid plus NPD mobility. 

But that's a bit like the collective self determination of many Japanese males (XX Generation) recognising that the future of the salary man was a bit of an intellectual con job that largely fostered a culture of bullying against women. XX Generation decided to disappoint their fathers and now still live with their longer living mums and wear lipstick for reasons that seem related to their rejection of getting laid. I've made that up of course. Or have I?

It's a collective decision for the better in that example, (and historically not exceptional). Yet any cretin can see that the corporation is all about those fathers, maximising the quarterly report for ever quicker and larger earnings velocity without really addressing the urgent and pressing issue that it only hastens us faster and faster and faster towards our own demise. (There is a role for socialised communications in all this by the way)

Top of mind as a throw away solution for a disposable society is slowing down the Corporations quarterly report to a bi-annual one. I'm sure you can think of better one's, but the greedy guys at the top aren't going to dig that are they? They're too busy digging our own graves.

So anyway, even though the environment singularity (where nature teaches us a big lesson) is tumbling ever closer and ever quicker than the insanely quick technological one, demanding we need tomorrows consumption today; we're still kind of relying on the stone age equivalent of fossil fuel combustion to be moved around, which I can't help but think is about rubbing two sticks together while surrounded by powerwindows, a sense of empowerment through acceleration and some decent subwoofers to drown out the drone of other cars ouside, because it isn't noisy kids that anymore and that's not because of the paedophiles but because of the car.

All that pace of change and we're stuck with corporate Cro-Magnon. You should watch this movie, but if you rely on Honda to get it right in 80 years time you might as well be honest and sphyxiate your children now.

You probably are if you're dropping them off at school.