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Educate Singaporeans on downsides of owning a car

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  • Queen of sgForums
    驚世駭俗醜不啦嘰 moderatress
    FireIce's Avatar
    261,591 posts since Dec '99
    • Consumer culture has made us believe that we "need" cars ("Can S'pore go car-lite?"; April 18).

      Owning a car is frequently perceived to be a symbol of position, wealth and achievement. It is also a representation of freedom and a carefree life.

      Therefore, making it harder, more expensive and more inconvenient to own a car may have an unintended consequence of making it a more sought-after status symbol.

      A car-lite culture will work only if we treat the root of the demand for cars, and not just the symptoms.

      Our people must be properly educated about the upsides of not owning a car and the downsides of owning one.

      Rather than offering freedom, owning a car can increase financial expenses and debts, limit our life choices, affect our health and reduce our connection to the people around us.

      Owning and maintaining a car have become increasingly more expensive, and the trend will most likely continue in the future. The savings from not owning a car can be used to improve our quality of life and overall well-being.

      Car owners are more likely to drive to their destinations, even if they are nearby, instead of walking or cycling to these places.

      It is no wonder that we have experienced an increase in obesity, diabetes, hypertension and other health risks that are related to living a more sedentary lifestyle.

      Driving a car and living a hurried life may also contribute to a lack of rootedness and less connection with people, including neighbours and the community.

      In the bigger picture, a car-lite culture will reduce the loss of lives from automobile accidents.

      It will free up spaces to build a more beautiful, people-friendly and lovable country that will cater to and enhance different livelihoods and lifestyles.

      It will also reduce air and noise pollution and contribute to a greener and more sustainable environment.

      The quest to build a car-lite culture can happen only when owning a car becomes an un-Singaporean dream.

      Such a culture can only be as strong as the people's desire for the values, benefits and outcomes of not owning a car.

      Patrick Liew Siow Gian (Dr)

      A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 23, 2016, with the headline 'Educate S'poreans on downsides of owning a car'
  • vicamour's Avatar
    1,425 posts since Jan '09
    • I feel very sad for this guy.

      Probably being brainwashed to the extend that he can't even think for himself. And now he wants to brainwash more people with the wrong mindset that being independent, having more flexibility and privacy and having aspirations in life is wrong. He wants everyone to be confine in crowded small spaces where quality of life decreases and tendacy of frustrations and crimes increases with more people in a smaller and yet decreasing place.

      Perhaps he should educate himself that cars are not expensive at all if he look at the true cost price of just the car itself. It becomes very expensive and stressful to own one because it is the govt that inflates the prices to be so high for their sake of their 6.9 and 10 million population plan. He should also think deeply that if the govt wants Singaporeans to be more family oriented, have more babies, cars are one of the tools to foster relationships with the family, bring convinence to the new borns and elderly people. And last but not least bring 3 generations of the family together in an undisturbed second home when travelling with all the laughter and privacy. 

      Perhaps he should look around and observe more people before his biased opinions that people who drive are unhealthy. There are people who drive to gym to workout and parks to cycle or run with their dogs. There are people who don't own a car but can go everywhere and eat till obesity. It's all about your choice and decision to be healthy or not. Driving is a hurried life? I feel more relaxed driving casually than rushing towards the time tables of bus and MRT arrivals and yet can reach the destination on time. There is less panics in life when you do not have to suffer the anxiety and crowdedness of a massive train breakdown.

      If he wants a more green Singapore, advocate more green cars and electric cars and not lame excuses from the LTA about the imported Tesla Model S. If he wants more spaces in Singapore, then do the more practical approach, vote against the 6.9 and even 10 million population drive in the next decades. Not only he will do us a favour, the future generations will benefit with lesser people in this small country. 

      The working class has aspirations because they put in hard work everyday. The working class has families and they have aspirations to give their families a better and happier life. If this author has no aspirations and family, then don't stop others from having so. 
      It is just too bad for him that he want to waste his only life with no aspirations and forever squeeze his soul out of the never ending crowdedness in his daily subway commutes.

      Edited by vicamour 30 May `16, 10:38PM
  • carbikebus's Avatar
    18,495 posts since Nov '03
    • Originally posted by vicamour:

      I feel very sad for this guy.

      Probably being brainwashed to the extend that he can't even think for himself. And now he wants to brainwash more people with the wrong mindset that being independent, having more flexibility and privacy and having aspirations in life is wrong. He wants everyone to be confine in crowded small spaces where quality of life decreases and tendacy of frustrations and crimes increases with more people in a smaller and yet decreasing place.

      Perhaps he should educate himself that cars are not expensive at all if he look at the true cost price of just the car itself. It becomes very expensive and stressful to own one because it is the govt that inflates the prices to be so high for their sake of their 6.9 and 10 million population plan. He should also think deeply that if the govt wants Singaporeans to be more family oriented, have more babies, cars are one of the tools to foster relationships with the family, bring convinence to the new borns and elderly people. And last but not least bring 3 generations of the family together in an undisturbed second home when travelling with all the laughter and privacy. 

      Perhaps he should look around and observe more people before his biased opinions that people who drive are unhealthy. There are people who drive to gym to workout and parks to cycle or run with their dogs. There are people who don't own a car but can go everywhere and eat till obesity. It's all about your choice and decision to be healthy or not. Driving is a hurried life? I feel more relaxed driving casually than rushing towards the time tables of bus and MRT arrivals and yet can reach the destination on time. There is less panics in life when you do not have to suffer the anxiety and crowdedness of a massive train breakdown.

      If he wants a more green Singapore, advocate more green cars and electric cars and not lame excuses from the LTA about the imported Tesla Model S. If he wants more spaces in Singapore, then do the more practical approach, vote against the 6.9 and even 10 million population drive in the next decades. Not only he will do us a favour, the future generations will benefit with lesser people in this small country. 

      The working class has aspirations because they put in hard work everyday. The working class has families and they have aspirations to give their families a better and happier life. If this author has no aspirations and family, then don't stop others from having so. 
      It is just too bad for him that he want to waste his only life with no aspirations and forever squeeze his soul out of the never ending crowdedness in his daily subway commutes.

      I feel and agreed with you bro..LTA should consider reduce the COE price for green or smaller capacity cars(1300cc below).For cars above that i got no comments..Even though I ride my trusty 600cc bike to work,I've used to owned several cars ranging from 2400cc-1500cc,But again i find it quite impractical in SG roads..

  • kooldog59's Avatar
    46 posts since Apr '13
    • Due to our roads being narrow, bikes are not safe, especially when lane splitting on the our expressways. I also support our "walk, cycle, ride" but in heavy rain, it is not easy. We need more covered walkways.  

  • Queen of sgForums
    驚世駭俗醜不啦嘰 moderatress
    FireIce's Avatar
    261,591 posts since Dec '99
  • The Code's Avatar
    452 posts since Jul '14
    • Problem is cars are only economy usefully if your job e.g sales or taxi driver required it. Also if you are living an big countries like Australia, Malaysia, you definitely need vehicle to travel, unlike Singapore of course.

  • vicamour's Avatar
    1,425 posts since Jan '09
    • Originally posted by The Code:

      Problem is cars are only economy usefully if your job e.g sales or taxi driver required it. Also if you are living an big countries like Australia, Malaysia, you definitely need vehicle to travel, unlike Singapore of course.

      Not entirely true. They can be a socializing and family oriented tool as well. 

      On the contrary, it will be more desirable to drive in a small country than a vast country of destinations hours apart. Driving from Changi to Tues takes less than an hour while driving between states in big countries may take days.

      These places need railway more than small places. Why need such luxuries in this small country? I'll rather that money used to provide free education for our young and free medical care for our elderly, or use it to invest in making our water resources even cost effective and fully self reliant from the water around us 

  • Pehon's Avatar
    3 posts since Aug '16
  • SMB145B's Avatar
    2,054 posts since Dec '12
    • you make me laugh.

      some goodus in the parliment wants zero cars, then make buses unaffordable and infrequent. MRT breakdown every now and then. chut so many pattern just make people to give up their cars, in the end backfired.

      BCM to improve quality? svcs spamming more rigids. when the peak hours comes, all the DDs and bendies all MIA. what's more the buses comes every 15-20 mins and that bus is a rigid. the thing is the PTO do even bother about that last bus. night buses also have buses not operating.

      MRT is also another problem. now on the CCL, trains bound for DBG and MRB do not run alternatingly currently due to signalling issues. city bound trains on the NSL are packed even for a 0920 or 0944 train from SBW once it reaches BSH or BDL. 

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