Debateageddon occurred in Denver tonight. The debate was big news, but what those living somewhere other than the Mile High City may not have been aware of is that a significant portion of I-25 was closed from 5pm to 10pm.
I have two coworkers that live nowhere near I-25 that left work significantly early to beat the metro-area-wide traffic snarl that was assumed would occur as a result of a major interstate arterial being SHUT DOWN. I'm talking about apocalyptically empty pavement. No cars. No trucks. No bikes. No scooters. No buses. No hoverboards. RTD announced services would be significantly delayed; both bus and lightrail.
Many Denver-ites were up in arms because of the five hour disruption of their daily transportation flows. I'm thankful I live and work to the north and west of the hot mess that was the presidential debate. I'm also thankful I was able to stay off of the major roads by riding my bike along my back ways.Many people apparently felt they had no choice but the automobile, and no choice but their normal commuting routes.
What is disturbing about this is that those people who are so bent out of shape because of a relatively minor disruption are so dependent on their single occupancy vehicles that they can't function without the freedom to drive them wherever and whenever they want.
If people can't see past a mere traffic inconvenience to the bigger issues then we truly do have a social dysfunction.
I'm purposefully not going to chime in on the debate itself. I was somewhat disgusted by the continuing political culture of ignorance (willful or otherwise) toward energy. I know all the politicians and pundits make claims of being experts when it comes to energy. Let's face it, if a politician could get us off our oil addiction then we would have gained energy independence way back when Dick Nixon first waved that flag so many moons ago. And how much better off are we today?
And then there are those who would perpetuate the idea that we have a God-given right to all that oil...that our generation deserves the lion's share.
Until our leaders are ready to look honestly at that issue and address it with frankness and boldness we may as well just ignore everything else they have to say. They're just running us full throttle off the cliff.
An honest and serious look at our society would show us that we must reduce our dependence on oil, foreign or otherwise. We need to scale back, transition to a less fossil fuel dependent economy, and learn to live on a reduce ration of the black stuff. That, my friends, is reality.