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Debates Forum

Debates Forum

  1. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    19 Apr '09 02:56
    When I was about 19 I decided I didn't want to drive a car. And 25 years later I still don't. People were saying, at that time, that the world needed less people to be driving cars - and I suppose I took it to heart. I have a small motorbike (not a 2-stroke), I use a bicycle, I walk to places, and I use public transport. Even when it's raining hard, I always turn up, on time. When people ask me why I don't drive, I tell them how I came to the decision, and add that it is perhaps comparable to someone choosing to be a vegetarian. Almost without exception, people seem unable to understand what they see as a completely futile gesture. Clearly, me choosing not to use an automobile makes no discernible contribution whatsoever to a cleaner or sustainable environment. And yet my steadfastness affords me some tiny frisson of satisfaction.

    Does anyone else here have any seemingly futile political or philosophical principles that they adhere to?

    Is there a rightful place for futility in the public domain of discourse and competing principles?

    Might the future of mankind be brighter if only futilite principles were reassessed and perhaps fashioned into some kind of agenda?
  2. 19 Apr '09 03:15
    Originally posted by FMF
    When I was about 19 I decided I didn't want to drive a car. And 25 years later I still don't. People were saying, at that time, that the world needed less people to be driving cars - and I suppose I took it to heart. I have a small motorbike (not a 2-stroke), I use a bicycle, I walk to places, and I use public transport. Even when it's raining hard, I always tur ...[text shortened]... if only futilite principles were reassessed and perhaps fashioned into some kind of agenda?
    I envy you for not having the 'need' for a car. I wish I didn't have to have one. Living in the US, one MUST have a car unless they live in a city such as New York or another urban center that has all the amenities of life just around the corner. Americans are loath to take public transportation unless absolutely necessary, and I think that's too bad. I ride my bike 28 miles total to and fro work sometimes despite my physical debilitation. A car is just another item to pay for...
  3. Subscriber FMF
    a.k.a. John W Booth
    19 Apr '09 03:24
    Originally posted by dystoniac
    I envy you for not having the 'need' for a car.
    Well, my life has been affected by my decision. The need for a car can be sidestepped by making certain choices about where you are and what you do.

    Do you have any principle(s) in life that you adhere to - despite the fact that it/they are seemingly futile?
  4. 19 Apr '09 06:31
    Originally posted by FMF
    Well, my life has been affected by my decision. The need for a car can be sidestepped by making certain choices about where you are and what you do.

    Do you have any principle(s) in life that you adhere to - despite the fact that it/they are seemingly futile?
    Well, I seem to continue to have hope that mankind will somehow figure out that we are all on this floating ball of earth together and come together and fight poverty, hunger, discrimination, unfairness, diseases, and greed and strive for peace; however, I cannot but help to think that my hoping is futile.
  5. 19 Apr '09 07:50
    Yes, I suppose so. I refuse to buy any sort of jewellery, flowers, expensive cosmetics, perfume, etc. In general I live a somewhat Spartan lifestyle, it seems to me that all these resources could be used to actually improving the standard of living of people.
  6. Standard member Thequ1ck
    Fast above
    19 Apr '09 08:31
    Originally posted by FMF
    When I was about 19 I decided I didn't want to drive a car. And 25 years later I still don't. People were saying, at that time, that the world needed less people to be driving cars - and I suppose I took it to heart. I have a small motorbike (not a 2-stroke), I use a bicycle, I walk to places, and I use public transport. Even when it's raining hard, I always tur ...[text shortened]... if only futilite principles were reassessed and perhaps fashioned into some kind of agenda?
    I steadfastly refuse to visit or work in country's that are still in the
    process of killing hundreds of thousands of people...
  7. Subscriber kmax87
    You've got Kevin
    19 Apr '09 11:12 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by FMF
    Does anyone else here have any seemingly futile political or philosophical principles that they adhere to?
    Random acts of kindness! It confuses the crap out of a lot of people and provides a form of entertainment when complete strangers are blown away by being allowed to proceed without being cut in front of, or being courteous at doorways and allowing the other person right of way whether it was theirs or not. I am no saint, I can tail gate with the best of them and if someone decides to block a two lane highway I have seen myself on occasion almost insanely give them a dose of bright headlight treatment until they work out that the fast lane is not the new slow lane, but I usually get bored with being a tool on the roads and then apply RAK to allow the car stuck in the side street to get into the main road by slowing a little and giving them the nod, same goes for the vehicle turning across my lane, allowing them to do it especially if traffic is slowed down up ahead. Or my favorite is getting into the right staggered distance behind the car in the next lane when our two lanes are about to merge, so that we can scissor together smoothly. The usual driving technique in Sydney is for those in the closing lane to go hard and try and cut in at the last nano-second(the school of BLT we call it:- brake late and turn) which usually causes the mother of all traffic jams during peak. Random Acts of Kindness on the roads are probably futile, because driving courteously as a common behaviour on the roads doesn't seem to really catch on, but its my windmill.
  8. Subscriber kmax87
    You've got Kevin
    23 May '09 15:19
    Originally posted by FMF
    Is there a rightful place for futility in the public domain of discourse and competing principles?
    In terms of invigorating relationships the futility of an attempted honesty certainly has dubious value.