All errors should be reported to DonSurber@gmail.com

Friday, August 07, 2020

Journalists should read the comments



Ryan Cooper of The Week does not like pickup trucks because conservatives drive them. He aired them on Twitter. Conservatives straightened him out.

Cooper tweeted, "Sales of mega-pickups, which have basically been deliberately designed to intimidate and kill pedestrians, are booming. The trend of 6-foot grilles that create massive blind spots and pull people under to be crushed when they are hit is 100 percent a marketing gimmick. Hundreds of conservatives here doing their best to demonstrate that yes, huge trucks are about postmodern culture war signaling and unsubtle Freudian neurosis. A light truck can be a useful tool, and I have owned one myself. making the grille 6 feet high so you can't see if you are running over your kid does not make it more useful. it does the opposite."

Really?

They design pickup tricks to kill pedestrians?

Jeff Vader improved upon the design.
I won't go into the Freudian neurosis nonsense, except to note that he later complained about homophobic replies in another case of someone going elbows out and later complaining about being elbowed.

Ted Cruz noted, "Blue check-marks are afraid of pick-up trucks."

Well, not all of them. One.

Cooper decided to take his argument to This Week where he is safe from counter-arguments because like most media online these days, no comments are allowed. He called it, "The case against American truck bloat."

Which is a shame because the online comments at Twitter forced Cooper to up his game.

He began his column with how he grew up around a 1980 F-150. This gave him some credibility in commenting on trucks.

And he modified his comment about designing the vehicles to kill pedestrians.

He used numbers to try to make the case. But while pedestrian vehicle deaths are up, killer pickup trucks are not solely to blame. Smartphones and more driving have led to the increase

CNBC reported in February, "For starters, America’s growing love affair with pickups, SUVs and crossover utility vehicles means pedestrians are being hit by bigger, heavier, and more powerful vehicles. As a result, pedestrians who are hit are more likely to die or suffer life-threatening injuries, the association said. Pedestrian fatalities involving SUVs jumped by 50 percent between 2013 and 2017, it estimates.

"Another factor is the growing population in many states, which has lead to more deadly encounters between drivers and pedestrians. The report also blames people being distracted by their smartphones and not being focused on the road as contributing to pedestrian fatalities.

"Add in a strong economy with relatively cheap gas prompting more people to drive more miles and it’s a deadly recipe for people walking along roads or crossing streets."

And if Cooper did a little further research, he would find buses are far more deadly than F-150s and the like.

One researcher found, "Compared with cars, buses were 11.85 times (95% CI 6.07 to 23.12) and motorcycles were 3.77 times (95% CI 1.40 to 10.20) more likely per mile to kill children 0–14 years old. Buses were 16.70 times (95% CI 7.30 to 38.19) more likely to kill adults age 85 or older than were cars. The risk of killing a pedestrian per vehicle mile traveled in an urban area was 1.57 times (95% CI 1.47 to 1.67) the risk in a rural area."

I live in a place where there are no buses, but of course plenty of these Born To Kill Pickups. My risk of being run over is 40% lower, according to one research paper.

But my point is comments helped Cooper as much as he seemed ticked by it. Maybe that was his plan, beta test the argument on Twitter and refine it when he made the argument for money. If so, kudos.

I keep comments open and aside from way too much spam, I like them. Communication is a two-way street. I also state at the top of the blog, "All errors should be reported to DonSurber@gmail.com," and I mean it. This has reduced typos.

Jonah Goldberg once wrote, "Never read the comments."

Why?

Because you might learn something?

33 comments:

  1. Smartphones are deadly. I live 1.5 miles from a new development. It has nice winding streets and broad sidewalks. The residents like to go for walks. Most, it seems, make a bee line for the back entrance then walk up the road towards where I live. Every time I go to town they are out, ear buds in, listening to music or a podcast, strolling down the center of the lane oblivious to vehicles approaching. They tend to walk with traffic, not against it.
    There have been several times I approached one of them and at the same time met oncoming traffic. They would be paying attention to the car in front of them and ignore me coming from behind. One several occasions they moved to the side, but as soon as the other car passed would reclaim the middle. Right smack in front of my six foot tall grill. So far no deaths, but I knocked a walking stick out of one lady's hand with my mirror.
    My truck is a 2000 Chevy. Quiet? Not hardly. Plenty of stuff rolling around in the back.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Don, you've made the big time. You now have spammers in your comment section. Congrats.

      Delete
  2. On my 3rd Ford pickup, the first two were sold at 150k miles, this one I've kept for 20 years it's at 230k.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Joe and Hunter BidenAugust 7, 2020 at 10:57 AM

    Pick ups? Yeah, I remember how that's done. See, first I would start out by rubbing their shoulders, then slowly bend down to get a good hair sniff. Of course that led to a comment or two about how good they smelled. Usually one thing would naturally lead to another and if I were lucky, her parents wouldn't even notice...

    ReplyDelete
  4. You are a benevolent despot, Big D! Hahaha. Seriously, WAY too many people these days are WAY too serious about the weight of their online opinions, this writer included. You keep it DubVee real.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I have a red diesel dually with a big flatbed.
    So many kill flags on the driver's side door, I started a new set on the passenger side. Wheelchairs are my favorite.

    ReplyDelete
  6. the Green River Killer drove a pickup, which probably took control of him

    ReplyDelete
  7. I have an old Dakota 315 with headers and tuner exhaust. (done by previous owner.)so its a bit noisy. does not even budge Teens with phone fixation.
    I sit in crosswalks more than once waiting for kids and adults to walk across
    due to they stop and TEXT! in the middle ofo the crosswalk! "Homo Stultis" -stupid man. Screamed at earlier this spring by a Walker who walke out into traffic-texting in a blind spot for me-all it did was creep forward to see traffic.

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  8. How many points for earbud wearing youngsters? Should be less than 70 for oldsters, but more than 10 for a man...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You get extra points if you leave the hat upright on the road....

      Delete
  9. Many left and right sites have gotten rid of comments. The excuse I've heard is that comments slow down page loads. I don't buy it. If that's a problem, make users separately click on a "comments" dialog box. This is what Townhall does.

    The Federalist got rid of comments, but they failed to moderate them when they allowed them, and it turned into an open sewer overflowing with leftist hate and right-wing responses to it.

    A friend told me Yahoo News ditched comments about two weeks ago. That seems designed to prevent the fake-news outlets whose reports they carry from being called out in real time -- just in time for them to spew their pre-election lies.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Communist, socialist, and planned parenthood have killed a lot more people than trucks. Why doesn't he rail against them?

    ReplyDelete
  11. Personally, I do not understand the trend of pickup size. I guess there's a reason. Why did they move from the size of the 1970 Ford pick-um-up is beyond me. Same 8' bed, same load capacity. I could stand in the engine bay and work on the V8 in there. https://www.google.com/search?q=ford+1979+pickup&oq=ford+1979+pickup&aqs=chrome..69i57j0l7.13119j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

    As far as SUVs - a blight IMO. Useless, especially the smallest in the line. Barely get my shoulders in the rear hatch. Chevy Blazer was an early SUV - a direct opposite of the Tardis - it was HUGE on the outside and no usable cargo or people space on the inside, mostly because of the high floor for ground clearance one would seldom need.
    The original Suburban was a great tow vehicle and had space inside because they designed it with a low floor. Now it has turned into the Chevy Subdivision. One car mag rating the redesigned Honda Pilot a couple years ago likened the handling to that of an apartment building.
    Gawd. Give me a BMW 2002, and a Mercedes Metris.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Trucks are not subject to CAFE fuel consumption rules and in addition can be built at a big profit. Since massive luxury cars could literally no longer be built to pass gas consumption standards, and the smaller cars build to pass CAFE are loss leaders, Detroit turned trucks into luxury vehicles. Without SUVs, Ford, GM, and Chrysler might collapse.

      TarsTarkas

      Delete
    2. "Personally, I do not understand the trend of pickup size. I guess there's a reason."

      I'll give you at least two major reasons. Towing cpacity and emissions requirements forced down the manufacturers' (translation: consumers) throats. Half the space in the engine bay is emission reducing equipment.

      FLOlson

      Delete
    3. TarsTarkas
      Ford will no longer make passenger sedans (except Mustang) for sale in the US because they had to take a loss on so many small cars to sell bigger cars. SUV's are considered trucks for CAFE standards. I think Ford made a wise decision.

      Delete
  12. Andrew Breitbart said always read the comments and he was right. You learn a lot from all POVs.

    Also, the best lines. If i was a comedy writer for SNL, I wouldn’t have to work. I am nowhere near as witty as Don, but I would just pull my lines from the comments and submit. Ace in particular has some great commenters.

    Now i just need someone to read the comments for me and I will be set.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Illegal aliens drive big old out of tune pickups so leftists are being racist again. Illegal aliens probably do not take driver training courses and do not appropriate American drunk driving laws.

    ReplyDelete
  14. You can learn a lot about a person from their attitude towards pickup trucks, or from their truck if they have one. I've found that the owners of flashy trucks can seldom prove what they think their trucks are saying about them. The guy or gal with a beat-up 7 year old standard; hay bits, dog leash, and kids t-ball sweatshirt in the bed? You can bet you life on them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I call the flashy ones little toy trucks because they all look like Hot Wheels.

      Delete
    2. Mom, I drive a 20 year old Chevy truck, edutcher, I cam them pimp mobiles, all flash, no loads.

      Delete
  15. Wait until Mercedes makes them.

    You know that hood ornament is really a crosshairs.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Since the target OP mentioned an F150. Were he to look at the gross weight of an F150 from say 1985 and one today.

    1985 model -- 3200#
    1999 model -- 3923#
    2020 model -- 4069#

    A whopping gain of 869# total and only 146# in 21 years. Ford learn that weight affects mileage. It would be interesting to figure out how much of that gain was regulatory driven?

    Personally I think all the chrome on the front of most trucks are nothing but a maintenance headache. But the bulk is no kid killer.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Some regulatory and safety, some new devices and toys, some gilt and flash. It all adds up.

      TarsTarkas

      Delete
  17. One of the reasons vehicles are increasingly dangerous to pedestrians is that crash test safety standards encourage a "high belt line" design, compromising visibility, especially to the rear.

    In the good old days it was easy safely backing out a parking space, today not so easy.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Pick-em-up trucks are deadly and yet Antifas play in the street.

    If it bothers you that my truck's headlights are shining thru your back window, move your little Prius out of the fast lane and let me go on by.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's not a "fast lane" it is a passing lane, and quit exceeding the speed limit and breaking the law.

      I'd never drive anything as "girlie" as a Prius.

      Delete
    2. Since our interstates were built for autobahn speed, the only lawbreakers are politicians using the speed limit as a revenue source.

      Delete
  19. Got a 2020 Chevrolet Z71 Trail Boss 6.2. Excellent truck and when in the mountains going up inclines I can't see shit over the hood. In Florida it is fine. I would love to get an Antifa Blender!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Got a 2020 Chevrolet Z71 Trail Boss 6.2. Excellent truck and when in the mountains going up inclines I can't see shit over the hood. In Florida it is fine. I would love to get an Antifa Blender!

    ReplyDelete
  21. This is a very late comment to this post, but I saw this at CTH and couldn't resist posting it here on this thread:

    From the poster WillRoll:

    Where have all the journos gone? Long time passing.
    Where have all the journos gone? Long time ago.
    Where have all the journos gone? They’ve gone to fake news every one.
    When will they every learn?
    When will they ever learn?

    TarsTarkas

    ReplyDelete