Buzzfeed's Autonomous Auto Enthusiast: "So Go F*ck a Tailpipe If You Love Cars So Much", Vox Echoes: "Ban Human Drivers ASAP"

Ronnie Schreiber
by Ronnie Schreiber

There’s a post over at Buzzfeed in which Matt Honan tells us that the future of automobiles is autonomous and how it’s going to be awesome. His conclusion makes me think that he’s not part of the car enthusiast tribe:

Cars are giant, inefficient, planet-and-people-killing death machines.

Self-driving cars — especially if they are operated as fleets and you only use one when you need it, summoning it Uber-style — would mean we could have fewer vehicles per person, less traffic congestion, less pollution, far fewer vehicles produced per year (thus lowering the environmental impact of production), and, best of all, safer streets. The blind, people with epilepsy, quadriplegics, and all manner of others who today have difficulty ferrying themselves around as they go through the mundanities of an average day will be liberated. Eliminating the automobile’s need for a human pilot will be a positive thing for society.

So go f*** a tailpipe if you love cars so much. Your love for cars doesn’t supersede the lives of 1.2 million people who die in automobile accidents every year. It’s not more important than the energy savings we’ll get from not manufacturing 60 million or so vehicles every year that spend most of their time idle. Turned off. Parked.

Perhaps we should use communal ovens and showers too. After all, those appliances in our homes spend most of their time idle. Come to think of it, maybe using words like showers and ovens might give Honan ideas — bad ideas.

Honan apparently has a fan in Vox’s Dylan Matthews (the irony of Matthews using an avatar taken from one of the most car-loving shows on TV, Archer, is surely lost upon him).

While composing the headline above, I almost typed “autonomy enthusiast”, but what Honan and Matthews are advocating is the opposite of autonomy. My guess is that their definition of need in “you only use one when you need it,” is different than yours or mine. I understand that TTAC friend Alex Roy tore Honan a new one at Alex’s TED talk, but it will be a while before video of the lecture is online.

Discuss authoritarian autonomous advocacy amongst yourselves.

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can get a parallax view at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS

Ronnie Schreiber
Ronnie Schreiber

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, the original 3D car site.

More by Ronnie Schreiber

Join the conversation
3 of 273 comments
  • Chan Chan on Oct 09, 2015

    If I were to take this joker seriously, I would raise him the following dilemma: The convenience of autonomous private cars would make people want to take MORE car trips and vastly increase the actual usage of our crumbling roads. The suggestion that increasing capacity has a direct impact on reducing congestion is very weak.

    • Dal20402 Dal20402 on Oct 09, 2015

      That is why even in a world of 100% autonomous cars there will still be mass transit in areas where there is not enough space to have cars for everyone.

  • Matador Matador on Oct 10, 2015

    I'll just leave this here: "In the year 5555 / Your arms hangin' limp at your sides / Your legs got nothin' to do / Some machine's doin' that for you"

  • M B When the NorthStar happened, it was a part of GM's "rebuilding" of the Cadillac brand. Money to finance it was shuffled from Oldsmobile, which resulted in Olds having to only facelift its products, which BEGAN its slide down the mountain. Olds stagnated in product and appearances.First time I looked at the GM Parts illustration of a NorthStar V-8, I was impressed AND immediately saw the many things that were expensive, costly to produce, and could have been done less expensively. I saw it as an expensive disaster getting ready to happen. Way too much over-kill for the typical Cadillac owner of the time.Even so, there were a few areas where cost-cutting seemed to exist. The production gasket/seal between the main bearing plate and the block was not substantial enough to prevent seeps. At the time, about $1500.00 to fix.In many ways, the NS engine was designed to make far more power than it did. I ran across an article on a man who was building kits to put the NS in Chevy S-10 pickups. With his home-built 4bbl intake and a 600cfm Holley 4bbl, suddenly . . . 400 horsepower resulted. Seems the low hood line resulted in manifolding compromises which decreased the production power levels.GM was seeking to out-do its foreign competitors with the NS design and execution. In many ways they did, just that FEW people noticed.
  • Redapple2 Do Hybrids and be done with it.
  • Redapple2 Panamera = road porn.
  • Akear What an absurd strategy. They are basically giving up after all these years. When a company drinks the EV hemlock failure is just around the corner.
  • Graham The answer to a question that shouldn't have been asked LOL