Detail, east Portland photo, courtesy Miles Hochstein / Portland Ground.

For old times' sake
The bojack bumper sticker -- only $1.50!

To order, click here.

Excellent tunes -- free! And on your browser right now. Just click on Radio Bojack!

E-mail us here.


This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on July 7, 2009 9:51 AM. The previous post in this blog was Don't stop 'til you get enough. The next post in this blog is God bless Dad. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.



Law and Taxation
How Appealing
TaxProf Blog
Mauled Again
Tax Appellate Blog
A Taxing Matter
Josh Marquis
Native America, Discovered and Conquered
The Yin Blog
Ernie the Attorney
Above the Law
The Volokh Conspiracy
Going Concern
Bag and Baggage
Wealth Strategies Journal
Jim Hamilton's World of Securities Regulation
World of Work
The Faculty Lounge
Lowering the Bar
OrCon Law

Hap'nin' Guys
Tony Pierce
Parkway Rest Stop
Along the Gradyent
Dwight Jaynes
Bob Borden
Dingleberry Gazette
The Red Electric
Iced Borscht
Jeremy Blachman
Dean's Rhetorical Flourish
Straight White Guy
As Time Goes By
Dave Wagner
Jeff Selis
Alas, a Blog
Scott Hendison
The View Through the Windshield
Appliance Blog
The Bleat

Hap'nin' Gals
My Whim is Law
Lelo in Nopo
Attorney at Large
Linda Kruschke
The Non-Consumer Advocate
10 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place
A Pig of Success
Attorney at Large
Margaret and Helen
Kimberlee Jaynes
Cornelia Seigneur
And Sew It Goes
Mile 73
Rainy Day Thoughts
That Black Girl
Posie Gets Cozy
Cat Eyes
Rhi in Pink
Ragwaters, Bitters, and Blue Ruin
Rose City Journal
Type Like the Wind

Portland and Oregon
Isaac Laquedem
Rantings of a [Censored] Bus Driver
Jeff Mapes
Vintage Portland
The Portlander
South Waterfront
Amanda Fritz
O City Hall Reporters
Guilty Carnivore
Old Town by Larry Norton
The Alaunt
Bend Blogs
Lost Oregon
Cafe Unknown
Tin Zeroes
David's Oregon Picayune
Mark Nelsen's Weather Blog
Travel Oregon Blog
Portland Daily Photo
Portland Building Ads
Portland Food and
Dave Knows Portland
Idaho's Portugal
Alameda Old House History
MLK in Motion

Retired from Blogging
Various Observations...
The Daily E-Mail
Saving James
Portland Freelancer
Furious Nads (b!X)
Izzle Pfaff
The Grich
Kevin Allman
AboutItAll - Oregon
Lost in the Details
Worldwide Pablo
Tales from the Stump
Whitman Boys
Two Pennies
This Stony Planet
1221 SW 4th
I am a Fish
Here Today
What If...?
Superinky Fixations
The Rural Bus Route
Another Blogger
Mikeyman's Computer Treehouse
Portland Housing Blog

Wonderfully Wacky
Dave Barry
Borowitz Report
Stuff White People Like
Worst of the Web

Valuable Time-Wasters
My Gallery of Jacks
Litterbox, On the Prowl
Litterbox, Bag of Bones
Litterbox, Scratch
Ride That Donkey
Singin' Horses
Rally Monkey
Simon Swears
Strong Bad's E-mail

Oregon News
The Oregonian
Portland Tribune
Willamette Week
The Sentinel
Southeast Examiner
Northwest Examiner
Sellwood Bee
Mid-County Memo
Vancouver Voice
Eugene Register-Guard
OPB - Portland
Salem Statesman-Journal
Oregon Capitol News
Portland Business Journal
Daily Journal of Commerce
Oregon Business
Portland Info Net
McMinnville News Register
Lake Oswego Review
The Daily Astorian
Bend Bulletin
Corvallis Gazette-Times
Roseburg News-Review
Medford Mail-Tribune
Ashland Daily Tidings
Newport News-Times
Albany Democrat-Herald
The Eugene Weekly
Portland IndyMedia
The Columbian

The Beatles
Bruce Springsteen
Joni Mitchell
Ella Fitzgerald
Steve Earle
Joe Ely
Stevie Wonder
Lou Rawls

E-mail, Feeds, 'n' Stuff

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

100 pages of poppycock

It took about a dozen planners and some "citizen advisor" face cards like Cora "Lents Stadium" Potter and Chris "Voter-Owned" Smith to churn out this monstrosity -- the Portland citywide streetcar manifesto. I love the part about how the greedy developers (the authors pretty much admit that's whom the streetcars are for) are going to "step down" their infill bunkers to the poor souls in their single-family houses. Yeah, right, that's gonna happen.

Oh yeah, and peak oil! They're great with the peak oil!

The total price tag for all the new streetcar lines? A mere $750 million. Plus many millions more every year to operate them, with laughable (if any) fare enforcement.

But cooler than buses. Way cooler.

Comments (28)

I rode the downtown streetcar out of sheer curiosity and I was not impressed. Its bumpy and slow and plodding, and it gave me motion sickness after a 10 minute ride. Plus when my stop came they wouldnt open some of the doors for some bizarre reason. No explanation of which doors would open or not open, and the manual open buttons didnt do anything.

60 plus years ago our leaders took out the streetcars. When I moved to Oregon in 1960 the empty streetcar barn was on Killingsworth near Albina. So are the leaders now on to something good or are streetcars best as a novelty for tourists?
(They have a really cute one on Istiklal Caddmus in Istanbul)

I am shocked, simply shocked that SW Portland outside of the core looks to be the most underserved area in this proposal. Afterall, it's aleady the most underserved area by Tri-Met currently. So it makes perfect sense overserve what already has much better public transportation and to continue to underserve the most underserved areas.

But hey .... taxation without equal service really isn't like taxation without equal representation, is it? Now where are those tea merchants and a harbor and my ancestors?

I cringe at even suggesting something so foolish, but it can't be any worse than the streetcar fiasco ... if Portlanders are against the bus because it just isn't cool or trendy enough, maybe they just need to get a different bus.

I'm thinking some double deckers like they had in London would fit the bill. Samadumbs and crew can even paint them silver to match the tram. Yes, I know it rains in Portland - so what?

Streetcars don't move many people for their cost. They're not as "green" as the new busses. They will cost us $billions to build. South waterfront is still half vancant after several years, so they don't even help sell condos very well. Why are we building them?

Peak oil is a reality! If it wasn't, the price wouldn't have continued to skyrocket since it hit $150 a barrel last summer... er... wait a minute...

I love the section with the rhetorical question: "Can I walk faster than a streetcar?" Answer: "It depends". Honest answer: "Yes".

Why are we building them?

We are building them for the following reasons:

1. They provide an excuse to give tax breaks to politician's friends.

2.They provide an excuse to give tax dollars to politician's friends.

3. The construction shovels money to politician's friends.

4. They provide ribbon cutting opportunities.

All of the above is especially true in the case of a politician who needs a lot of support (and cash) to fight off a recall.


"Why are we building them?"

One more reason to build the oh so needed CC Hotel.

In the long run, this is all about building monuments. Stuff in place now, like infrastructure, is nowheres near as exciting.

Here is another gem from the deluded planners. A definition of a “twenty minute” neighborhood:

Figure 6. The 20-minute neighborhood.
A 20-minute neighborhood is the area that can be
reached in 20 minutes (about a 1-mile walk). A
streetcar can extend the pedestrian environment up to
approximately 3 to 4 miles.

Holy Sh*t, Batman, your life is up to 4 miles away from home. WOW, a whole 4 miles, just like in the 1800's where most people seldom traveled far away from where they were born.

My “twenty minute neighborhood” is from twenty MILES in each direction not just along a slow crappy streetcar track. Reason: I have a Automobile!.

I suspect that most of the poeple who creat this crap also have cars, they just want others to give up their cars.

It is time to fire about 300 of the region’s 350 planners.

The really sick part is the idiots who wrote this report really believe in peak oil because they have no concept of basic economics.


JK: I certainly can't drive 20 miles in any direction in 20 minutes in my neighborhood. (Well at least I can't without breaking traffic laws and probably killing people.)

I can probably get about 10 miles if I hit the lights right.

I certainly can't drive 20 miles in any direction in 20 minutes
Ever hear of freeways?


I like the Streetcar, but I'm not sure why MLK is a priority. Don't we already have a mass transit line running right through North Portland, in the MAX Redline. Seems redundant.

Ever hear of freeways?

Yeah but it takes a little over 10 minutes to get to one, and then they may be jammed depending on the time of day. (Not to mention the wait on the metered on-ramps.)

And then you might not be able to get off anywhere near where you want to go.

I still hold that I doubt very few people, if any, can get 20 miles from their neighborhood in 20 minutes without breaking traffic laws.

I love streetcars, and not only because loonies like Karlock hate them (although that would be reason enough). That report was 80% tedious wank but the content was clearly well thought out.

What I don’t understand is why this is the 10,000th post that claims to have found out what streetcars are for: ”the authors pretty much admit that's whom the streetcars are for.” They are about development and that has always been front and center. Somebody will make money, but then again somebody will make money by scraping Helvetia and building snout houses.

The streetcar won't be anything more than a sucking redundancy until the city figures out how to get people to pay to ride it. And it doesn't help that most of its route is in fareless square which only confuses visitors who think (and are sometimes even told by other riders) that the entire streetcar route is free.

They are about development and that has always been front and center. Somebody will make money, but then again somebody will make money by scraping Helvetia and building snout houses.

Yeah but they practically stuff the streetcar full of $100 bills like a pinata before shipping it down to the condo developers, i.e. the city subsidizes the crap out of the developments (see the sidebar of this blog for the city's rapidly expanding credit limit). I'm pretty sure "snout" houses in Helvetia would sell without billions in subsidies (I could be wrong, maybe they're considering street money pinatas too).

I'm pretty sure this kind replacement of the housing market with central planning subsidization was the downfall of the great communist powers (or at least a contributing factor). Except those that had economic reforms in the 60s and 70s, I guess. Doesn't look to sustainable to me.

All elected officials should use public transit everyday for all their personal and family needs.

If Sam Adams has to get somewhere he should use the bus. No cars, pickup or any other form of private transit. Same goes for Gov. Ted and every damn one of them.

And next up for Portland, gas oil lamps, or maybe whale oil ones.

Libertarian Guy, you're onto something. It ought to be written into the contracts of, at least, the city council members AND those managing transportation, including the CEO of Tri-Met.

Sam wouldn't have a very difficult time. He could walk up to the MAX yellow line and ride it straight into town. But he doesn't. Because he doesn't have to.

As my old boss used to tell me, "Mass transit is for Democrats and poor people."

For what it's worth, this stepdown nonsense has been part of Portland's zoning ever since the big white tower now known as the Wells Fargo Center started blocking views of Mt. Hood from the west hills.

Never mind that people sell unused vertical space above existing buildings to new developments; or that zoning variations happen...

I love the section with the rhetorical question: "Can I walk faster than a streetcar?" Answer: "It depends". Honest answer: "Yes".

No way. Streetcar's faster. I'll happily take that bet. Say, $100?

If you start at Good Sam Hospital and travel to the PSU Urban Center, the streetcar will take roughly 23 minutes, while walking will take roughly 39 minutes -- nearly twice as long.

Er... that's thirty nine minutes for you, Kari.

Skinny walker,

You are incorrect.

When the streetcar opened I did just such an experiment. I walked from my house on NW 25th (3-4 blocks from the stop at the hospital) to an appointment I had in the Wells Fargo tower on SW 4th and Columbia. It took 20 minutes. On the way back I took the streetcar, it took 40 minutes!

*the timing was door-to-door so it includes walking to and from the stop and waiting for the next train. Comparisons like Skinny Walkers assume the pedestrian would wait for the streetcar before heading to their designation or walking in the opposite way from their destination before setting out.

The problem with those Google calculations is that they utilize different routes. The walking routes they chose are rather hilly and would likely be slow.

The average speed of the streetcar, assuming that stretch of streetcar line to be 2.4 miles, would be about 10mph. The minimum speed that the aforementioned PDF from the Streetcar folks is 7mph. Both Google and the Streetcar folks assume 3mph walking average speed.

I tend to walk about 4-5mph but can go faster when needed. I would definitely be able to beat it if there were some headway involved--an even race would be interesting, and I've been wanting to try it for awhile.

And regarding the plan in the PDF--I see they're extending a line into Washington County--gotta love Portland imperialism.

I concur with John. I use to walk to work from NW Marshall and 24th to the Standard Plaza Building across from the Portland Building in 20 minutes. It took me 35 minutes to go from Good Sam (even two blocks closer)to a point four blocks away from Standard Plaza (the closest point) by trolley. Six blocks total in less distance than the walking scenario. And I'm a little chubby.

The problem with those Google calculations is that they utilize different routes. The walking routes they chose are rather hilly and would likely be slow. ...

Choose any route you want.

I've got $100. And yes, it's going to be an even race -- you don't get to count the time waiting for the streetcar to arrive as part of the trip time.

Given enough of a headstart of "waiting time", I could walk across America faster than you could fly across it. Please.

Good Sam to the Urban Center. You walk. I'll ride. $100. Let's go.

If it's 4:30 on a rainy weekday afternoon in late November, you could lose.

Snethen and I tried this very thing once. It was mid-afternoon, summer, no traffic, four years ago. We only got as far as 11th and Glisan before the streetcar passed us.

But if it were rush hour and bad weather, we probably would have gotten further. A lot further. I'd guess at least Stark.


As a lawyer/blogger, I get
to be a member of:

In Vino Veritas

Lange, Pinot Gris 2015
Kiona, Lemberger 2014
Willamette Valley, Pinot Gris 2015
Aix, Rosé de Provence 2016
Marchigüe, Cabernet 2013
Inazío Irruzola, Getariako Txakolina Rosé 2015
Maso Canali, Pinot Grigio 2015
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Kirkland, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2016
Cantele, Salice Salentino Reserva 2013
Whispering Angel, Côtes de Provence Rosé 2013
Avissi, Prosecco
Cleto Charli, Lambrusco di Sorbara Secco, Vecchia Modena
Pique Poul, Rosé 2016
Edmunds St. John, Bone-Jolly Rosé 2016
Stoller, Pinot Noir Rosé 2016
Chehalem, Inox Chardonnay 2015
The Four Graces, Pinot Gris 2015
Gascón, Colosal Red 2013
Cardwell Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
L'Ecole No. 41, Merlot 2013
Della Terra, Anonymus
Willamette Valley, Dijon Clone Chardonnay 2013
Wraith, Cabernet, Eidolon Estate 2012
Januik, Red 2015
Tomassi, Valpolicella, Rafaél, 2014
Sharecropper's Pinot Noir 2013
Helix, Pomatia Red Blend 2013
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
Campo Viejo, Rioja Reserva 2011
Villa Antinori, Toscana 2013
Locations, Spanish Red Wine
Locations, Argentinian Red Wine
La Antigua Clásico, Rioja 2011
Shatter, Grenache, Maury 2012
Argyle, Vintage Brut 2011
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16 Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2014
Benton Hill, Pinot Gris 2015
Primarius, Pinot Gris 2015
Januik, Merlot 2013
Napa Cellars, Cabernet 2013
J. Bookwalter, Protagonist 2012
LAN, Rioja Edicion Limitada 2011
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Rutherford 2009
Denada Cellars, Cabernet, Maipo Valley 2014
Marchigüe, Cabernet, Colchagua Valley 2013
Oberon, Cabernet 2014
Hedges, Red Mountain 2012
Balboa, Rose of Grenache 2015
Ontañón, Rioja Reserva 2015
Three Horse Ranch, Pinot Gris 2014
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
Nelms Road, Merlot 2013
Chateau Ste. Michelle, Pinot Gris 2014
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2012
Conn Creek, Cabernet, Napa 2013
Villa Maria, Sauvignon Blanc 2015
G3, Cabernet 2013
Chateau Smith, Cabernet, Washington State 2014
Abacela, Vintner's Blend #16
Willamette Valley, Rose of Pinot Noir, Whole Clusters 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Ca' del Baio Barbaresco Valgrande 2012
Goodfellow, Reserve Pinot Gris, Clover 2014
Lugana, San Benedetto 2014
Wente, Cabernet, Charles Wetmore 2011
La Espera, Cabernet 2011
King Estate, Pinot Gris 2015
Adelsheim, Pinot Gris 2015
Trader Joe's, Pinot Gris, Willamette Valley 2015
La Vite Lucente, Toscana Red 2013
St. Francis, Cabernet, Sonoma 2013
Kendall-Jackson, Pinot Noir, California 2013
Beaulieu, Cabernet, Napa Valley 2013
Erath, Pinot Noir, Estate Selection 2012
Abbot's Table, Columbia Valley 2014
Intrinsic, Cabernet 2014
Oyster Bay, Pinot Noir 2010
Occhipinti, SP68 Bianco 2014
Layer Cake, Shiraz 2013
Desert Wind, Ruah 2011
WillaKenzie, Pinot Gris 2014
Abacela, Fiesta Tempranillo 2013
Des Amis, Rose 2014
Dunham, Trautina 2012
RoxyAnn, Claret 2012
Del Ri, Claret 2012
Stoppa, Emilia, Red 2004
Primarius, Pinot Noir 2013
Domaines Bunan, Bandol Rose 2015
Albero, Bobal Rose 2015
Deer Creek, Pinot Gris 2015
Beaulieu, Rutherford Cabernet 2013
Archery Summit, Vireton Pinot Gris 2014
King Estate, Pinot Gris, Backbone 2014
Oberon, Napa Cabernet 2013
Apaltagua, Envero Carmenere Gran Reserva 2013
Chateau des Arnauds, Cuvee des Capucins 2012
Nine Hats, Red 2013
Benziger, Cabernet, Sonoma 2012
Roxy Ann, Claret 2012
Januik, Merlot 2012
Conundrum, White 2013
St. Francis, Sonoma Cabernet 2012

The Occasional Book

Phil Stanford - Rose City Vice
Kenneth R. Feinberg - What is Life Worth?
Kent Haruf - Our Souls at Night
Peter Carey - True History of the Kelly Gang
Suzanne Collins - The Hunger Games
Amy Stewart - Girl Waits With Gun
Philip Roth - The Plot Against America
Norm Macdonald - Based on a True Story
Christopher Buckley - Boomsday
Ryan Holiday - The Obstacle is the Way
Ruth Sepetys - Between Shades of Gray
Richard Adams - Watership Down
Claire Vaye Watkins - Gold Fame Citrus
Markus Zusak - I am the Messenger
Anthony Doerr - All the Light We Cannot See
James Joyce - Dubliners
Cheryl Strayed - Torch
William Golding - Lord of the Flies
Saul Bellow - Mister Sammler's Planet
Phil Stanford - White House Call Girl
John Kaplan & Jon R. Waltz - The Trial of Jack Ruby
Kent Haruf - Eventide
David Halberstam - Summer of '49
Norman Mailer - The Naked and the Dead
Maria Dermoȗt - The Ten Thousand Things
William Faulkner - As I Lay Dying
Markus Zusak - The Book Thief
Christopher Buckley - Thank You for Smoking
William Shakespeare - Othello
Joseph Conrad - Heart of Darkness
Bill Bryson - A Short History of Nearly Everything
Cheryl Strayed - Tiny Beautiful Things
Sara Varon - Bake Sale
Stephen King - 11/22/63
Paul Goldstein - Errors and Omissions
Mark Twain - A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
Steve Martin - Born Standing Up: A Comic's Life
Beverly Cleary - A Girl from Yamhill, a Memoir
Kent Haruf - Plainsong
Hope Larson - A Wrinkle in Time, the Graphic Novel
Rudyard Kipling - Kim
Peter Ames Carlin - Bruce
Fran Cannon Slayton - When the Whistle Blows
Neil Young - Waging Heavy Peace
Mark Bego - Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul (2012 ed.)
Jenny Lawson - Let's Pretend This Never Happened
J.D. Salinger - Franny and Zooey
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
Timothy Egan - The Big Burn
Deborah Eisenberg - Transactions in a Foreign Currency
Kurt Vonnegut Jr. - Slaughterhouse Five
Kathryn Lance - Pandora's Genes
Cheryl Strayed - Wild
Fyodor Dostoyevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Jack London - The House of Pride, and Other Tales of Hawaii
Jack Walker - The Extraordinary Rendition of Vincent Dellamaria
Colum McCann - Let the Great World Spin
Niccolò Machiavelli - The Prince
Harper Lee - To Kill a Mockingbird
Emma McLaughlin & Nicola Kraus - The Nanny Diaries
Brian Selznick - The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Sharon Creech - Walk Two Moons
Keith Richards - Life
F. Sionil Jose - Dusk
Natalie Babbitt - Tuck Everlasting
Justin Halpern - S#*t My Dad Says
Mark Herrmann - The Curmudgeon's Guide to Practicing Law
Barry Glassner - The Gospel of Food
Phil Stanford - The Peyton-Allan Files
Jesse Katz - The Opposite Field
Evelyn Waugh - Brideshead Revisited
J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
David Sedaris - Holidays on Ice
Donald Miller - A Million Miles in a Thousand Years
Mitch Albom - Have a Little Faith
C.S. Lewis - The Magician's Nephew
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
William Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Ivan Doig - Bucking the Sun
Penda Diakité - I Lost My Tooth in Africa
Grace Lin - The Year of the Rat
Oscar Hijuelos - Mr. Ives' Christmas
Madeline L'Engle - A Wrinkle in Time
Steven Hart - The Last Three Miles
David Sedaris - Me Talk Pretty One Day
Karen Armstrong - The Spiral Staircase
Charles Larson - The Portland Murders
Adrian Wojnarowski - The Miracle of St. Anthony
William H. Colby - Long Goodbye
Steven D. Stark - Meet the Beatles
Phil Stanford - Portland Confidential
Rick Moody - Garden State
Jonathan Schwartz - All in Good Time
David Sedaris - Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Anthony Holden - Big Deal
Robert J. Spitzer - The Spirit of Leadership
James McManus - Positively Fifth Street
Jeff Noon - Vurt

Road Work

Miles run year to date: 113
At this date last year: 155
Total run in 2016: 155
In 2015: 271
In 2014: 401
In 2013: 257
In 2012: 129
In 2011: 113
In 2010: 125
In 2009: 67
In 2008: 28
In 2007: 113
In 2006: 100
In 2005: 149
In 2004: 204
In 2003: 269

Clicky Web Analytics