did someone muck with the backend here

Re: Parking Trouble

1

The question reduces to "Are there more or fewer disabled parking spaces than is socially optimal?" I'd trust E. Messily to make the right call in this specific instance since she has the most experience with this specific parking lot and knows how often the disabled spot is in use.

In the general case, I'm torn; ex ante I'd guess we tend to overprovide disabled parking spaces for the same reason we overprovide corn subsidies. On the other hand, I paternalistically believe people don't walk enough and forcing people to park a little further away is probs a good thing for their health/happiness even if they complain about it a little.


Posted by: torque | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 10:17 AM
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2

Park in the normie spot. The small but more likely inconvenience to the normie is outweighed by the large but less likely inconvenience to the disabled parker, even if the disabled parker is Heebie.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 10:24 AM
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3

When my dad had a tag and I was driving him, I usually parked in the normie spot.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 10:27 AM
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4

But there are other spaces there too. They just have cars in them right now, and it's pretty likely that one or more will leave while E. is inside. How does that change the question?


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 10:35 AM
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5

I agree with 2 although I'm not sure how I'm involved.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 10:37 AM
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6

Oh, this post is by Ben. NEVERMIND.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 10:40 AM
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7

What's a pediatric boot, Ben?


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 10:43 AM
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8

The hollowed out corpse of a child that you put on your foot. Duh.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 10:45 AM
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9

I'm pretty sure 2 is what I did, although I don't remember for sure now. At the time, I really couldn't decide which was the most rightest thing to do. (I did, and do, realize that this is not an important question, and that I have already spent more time thinking about it than it deserved.)


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 10:48 AM
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10

7: A typo.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 11:21 AM
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11

9 last: Mouseover.


Posted by: Mossy Character | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 11:25 AM
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12

Park in the normie space.

This will force the non-disabled person to park far, far away. Then this person will have to walk blocks and blocks. That will be good for their heart.

Meanwhile, the disabled person will have a parking space.

Win, win.


Posted by: delagar | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 11:30 AM
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13

Extrapolating from 12, we should remove all non-disabled parking spaces.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 11:38 AM
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14

Exactly! Trains instead of automobiles, and install an obstacle course between the train station and whatever ultimate destination the train is connecting passengers with.

Let's get those heart rates UP.


Posted by: delagar | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 11:41 AM
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My instinct is that 12 is correct. The variable not given is how fast the turnover at the restaurant is and how full it is when EM arrives. Inconveniencing one able bodied person to leave the disabled space free for others may not be equivalent to inconveniencing 20 people who turn up while EM and the other people already in the car park are still eating. I have no idea how the moral calculus works in this case.

Also, several of those people may be able bodied but encumbered with toddlers. But we don't know which.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 11:50 AM
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16

My favorite disabilty-parking-spot scenario is the parking lot behind the Goodwill in Westminster, MD. There are several marked/reserved spots, including one with a van unloading area, all right by the giant, gently-sloped ramp up to the entrance.

But there are no curb cuts anywhere on the entire property.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 11:52 AM
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ALSO, I've had someone chanting "the common good" in the back of my head since I wrote this, and I just now figured out that it's the city council or whoever from Hot Fuzz.

THE GREATER GOOD


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 11:53 AM
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18

It wasn't a parking lot, it's all angled street parking. Metered during the day, but free at night. And downtown, so not just serving that particular restaurant.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 11:54 AM
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19

Park across both disabled and normie spots if you're driving a black BMW.


Posted by: Todd | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 12:09 PM
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20

My favorite disabilty-parking-spot scenario is the parking lot behind the Goodwill in Westminster, MD.

We used to live in Westminster and my wife and I used to joke that Carroll County had the most inane parking lot designs of any place in the world. It does not surprise me that the inanity extends to disabled parking. Republicans and urban design don't mix.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 12:11 PM
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21

Great movie.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 12:11 PM
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22

The best part about Westminster is how everyone on the main downtown street has "gardens" full of carefully arranged fake flowers and plants. SO CREEPY AND AMAZING.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 12:24 PM
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23

I only go for the kennel club.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 12:28 PM
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24

12 is probably right. No one should use a car for a local trip without a special need (i.e. a mobility issue).


Posted by: Charlie W | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 1:33 PM
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25

I mean, consider the immense range of externalities. Air quality, noise pollution, the risk of accidents, CO2 emissions, the sheer ugliness of roads designed for cars, the clutter of parking. All of these things have been normalised so that we don't notice them, but a much, much better kind of urban environment (without cars) is available.


Posted by: Charlie W | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 1:35 PM
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26

That may be true of some places, but it's not true where I am.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 1:45 PM
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27

Which, maybe I should clarify, is not an urban environment by most standards of "urban".


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 1:46 PM
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28

Global road traffic deaths: 1.25 million. The main cause of death in the 15-29 age group. If you could un-invent a technology, it'd be this one.


Posted by: Charlie W | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 1:51 PM
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29

Per annum.


Posted by: Charlie W | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 1:54 PM
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30

One technology per annum?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 1:58 PM
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31

Neat. Meanwhile, people who live here still need to transport themselves and their belongings from one place to another; neither the weather nor the (lack of) local options for public transportation make abandoning cars a realistic prospect.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:01 PM
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32

Park so your car is straddling both spaces. Problem solved.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:04 PM
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33

I want to use a golf cart for my commuting and errands.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:07 PM
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34

An enclosed one with a heater.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:09 PM
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35

31, horses, ox-carts and trains are all we really need.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:13 PM
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36

I was daydreaming about hitching posts and horses while watching Godless the other day.

The downside to that is how much horseshit there is everywhere all the time.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:21 PM
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37

*Can* we get rid of one piece of technology per annum?

We could hold a world-wide referendum. Simple majority rules. Take out car alarms this year. Maybe leaf-blowers the year after that. Or pop-up ads.

Whatever y'all like!


Posted by: delagar | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:30 PM
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38

This seems like a weird conflation of deontology and consequentialism. There are two separate issues:

Is E. Messily morally entitled to claim this space? Since E. Messily doesn't seem to have gamed the system in order to get a disability tag, the answer seems to be unambiguously yes.

Given that E. Messily is morally entitled to take the spot, should she forgo the disabled spot so that someone more deserving might take it? This doesn't seem all that different from the question of whether - in the absence of a "disabled" spot - E. Messily should deliberately forgo the nearest spot she can take.

The restricted definition of the handicapped spot does increase the expected use of the spot to someone else, conditional on them needing the spot while E. Messily is parked. But it also decreases the probability that any such person will show up! When such things are undecidable, do the thing where you can verify the benefits.

Better to offer assistance to people who seem to need help, than to put yourself out many times on the off chance that it will help someone else more.


Posted by: Benquo | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:34 PM
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39

"We could never do that in our city":

http://www.houstontomorrow.org/commentary/story/brent-toderian4/

A big problem, yes, but fixes are at hand.

Personal admission: having been injured in a hit and run car accident - an untraced, and possibly uninsured driver - I'm much less sanguine and forgiving about car travel than I used to be. I think they're a plague, and that it'd be better for everyone to be honest about the impacts.


Posted by: Charlie W | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:38 PM
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40

That sucks. Hope you heal.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:43 PM
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41

Maybe vandalizing parked cars would help you feel better.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:48 PM
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42

Thanks: I'm pretty much OK. Lost a front upper incisor. That was the worst part by far. But have been left with the indelible thought: why should anyone, ever, have to accept this crap?


Posted by: Charlie W | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:49 PM
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43

Definitely go with vandalism.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 2:55 PM
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44

I'm kinda with Charlie W. when it comes to cars. Mind you, I have a car, and I drive it almost everywhere. But that's because US cities (and especially mine) are designed to make any other sort of life nearly impossible.

Ditch cars, bring back trolleys, light rail, and delivery boys/people. More jobs, better US health in the long run.

Not to mention a probable benefit to the global climate. (We'd have to factor in the climatic cost of building all those railways and trains. But in the long run, maybe?)


Posted by: delagar | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 4:09 PM
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45

I expect our car culture will someday be seen the way we see the medieval throw-feces-in-the-street culture.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 5:22 PM
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46

38- I wouldn't be foregoing anything. The two spots are right next to each other. I'm going to park in a conveniently nearby place no matter what; the question is which one should I leave available: the one that anyone can park in, or the one that is reserved for people who need a close-in spot?


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 5:36 PM
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47

You should park in the handicapped spot, because if you leave the handicapped spot open you will be tempting an able-bodied person to park there.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 6:30 PM
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48

Don't eat at the sushi place. Go to the taco place on the main drag that doesn't have any parking and looks like it could really use some custom.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 6:54 PM
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49

My intuition is that you should leave the handicapped spot open if you don't need* to use it.

*For whatever the relevant meaning of "need" is, including presence of an equally convenient spot.


Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 6:59 PM
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50

I'm sorry, surf-themed taco bar.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 7:00 PM
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51

Charlie W, Courtney Barnett is playing your song:

More people die on the road than they do in the ocean
Maybe we should mull over culling cars instead of sharks
Or just lock them up in parks where we can go and view them


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 7:39 PM
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52

Charley have you eaten there? Would I fit in amongst "the community's river surfing/kayaking/snowboarding crowd"?


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 8:03 PM
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53

Can I try downhill kayaking? That sounds fun.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 8:11 PM
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54

I guess the real question is will they let me bring a kayak up the lift?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 8:12 PM
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55

I mean, they let people sit-ski. You might have to demonstrate an ability to stay in control of your kayak at all times, and have some sort of restraining device in case you fell out.


Posted by: E. Messily | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 8:22 PM
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56

Go get a taco and ask around.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 8:23 PM
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57

The current situation of a small number of handicapped spots that generally go unused and a relatively small number of people who can use them seems suboptimal. Better to have more spots and a wider range of people who can use them (e.g. expand to include all children under some age and all people older than some age). There would still be a dilemma about using the last spot, but that would happen rarely.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 8:38 PM
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58

I think downhill kayaking is a step in the direction you want.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 8:50 PM
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59

Downhill outrigger canoe is also a good option.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 8:51 PM
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60

If you assign spots for young children it's still suboptimal because they can't see over the dash and park all crooked.


Posted by: Mossy Character | Link to this comment | 12-29-17 9:41 PM
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61

51: great recommendation!


Posted by: Charlie W | Link to this comment | 12-30-17 4:26 AM
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52 I have eaten there, but it's not in my rotation during the Atkins season. When I was there in July, we were the only customers, so fitting in wasn't an issue.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-30-17 9:03 AM
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63

57: or simply render more people disabled through, say, a campaign to promote downhill kayaking.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-30-17 10:40 AM
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64

Or through efforts to apprehend me.


Posted by: Jason Bourne | Link to this comment | 12-30-17 10:42 AM
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65

Isn't downhill kayaking just sledding with the illusion of control?


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 12-30-17 10:52 AM
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66

Isn't all kayaking downhill?


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 12-30-17 3:21 PM
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67

What? No. Oceans aren't downhill.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-30-17 3:39 PM
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68

Aren't they though? The Earth is wider than it is tall, so any movement away from the Equator ought to be downhill, oughtn't?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 12-30-17 4:13 PM
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69

It's downhill all the way down.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 12-30-17 4:25 PM
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66: When I kayak alone I usually do half of it uphill.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 12-30-17 7:07 PM
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||
Oh my goodness. My sister went in to have some precancerous bits frozen off her face, and the doctor prescribed a topical chemo cream instead. (She also had a few spots on her leg and back excised.) Treatment looks rough: https://www.self.com/story/photos-skin-precancer-treatment/amp

Wear sunscreen, folks.
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Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 12-30-17 8:08 PM
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