Fact-Checking the "PRT Boondoggle" Blog
A project of the PRT NewsCenter

Friday, October 26, 2007

There's something about Bigpedia

Over at SenseUp (which has declared Get On Board!PRT to be "brilliant"), the Minnesota anti-PRT propagandist trotted out this new little trial balloon (crossposted at Dump Mark Olson). We might call it Help, I'm Being Suppressed, Poor Me:

There's something called Bigpedia that uses a lot of the material from the Wikipedia PRT page… [ellipses in original] but also includes facts that PRTistas like ATren have kept out of the Wikipedia page including links to skeptical sites like mine and Light Rail Now... Source (what SoundPRT thinks about Light Rail Now)

Bigpedia? 'About 3 pages of hits on Google' Bigpedia? Notice that he actually posts three variations on the same theme between 5:39 and 5:44pm (1, 2, 3) -- two beginning identically with "There's something called Bigpedia." At this rate he'll soon drive Bigpedia's hits through the roof!

Bigpedia's one of those sites that copies Wikipedia content, presumably in order to attract hits. In this case, two year old content about PRT, as A Transportation Enthusiast so ably points out in this response:

What [MN anti-PRT propagandist] doesn’t tell you is that this is a verbatim copy of a 2 year old version of the Wikipedia page! See the corresponding Wikipedia version - it’s from April 2005!

Why are those links gone from Wikipedia now? Because they were found to be unreliable! In fact, many of the "disadvantages" you cite were removed by the consensus of multiple editors, when it became clear that there were no reliable sources to support them.

Here's another interesting tidbit: also in April 2005, [MN anti-PRT propagandist]basically junked that version of the Wikipedia article for his own propaganda-laced version, which was promptly reverted by another editor. So, [MN anti-PRT propagandist], two years ago you saw the need to replace this entire text with your own version, yet now you are promoting it? Why did you change your mind?

And here's the kicker: do you want to know where the link to [MN anti-PRT propagandist]'s website came from? He added it himself! Check out this edit from 2004, where IP address adds the link to [MN anti-PRT propagandist]'s PRT pages. Now, browse to the contribution history for that IP address, and you will find this other edit in which [MN anti-PRT propagandist] identifies himself with a byline!

So, let’s review: (1) the Bigpedia article is a verbatim copy of the Wikipedia article from 2 years ago, (2) an article with which [MN anti-PRT propagandist] himself was so unhappy that he replaced completely, and which (3) contained links back to [MN anti-PRT propagandist]'s anti-PRT site that were added by [MN anti-PRT propagandist] himself, and which (4) also contained skeptical claims that at least half a dozen other Wikipedia editors agreed to remove because they were unsupportable.

Thanks for that link, [MN anti-PRT propagandist], and for once again proving my point that almost all anti-PRT sentiment on the net can be traced back to you.


, as the kids say, yo' face!

She says, hey babe, take a walk on the Ken Avidor

Thursday, October 25, 2007

See his Right Wing connection, Part III

Kiln Ovendoor the Minnesota anti-PRT propagandist is up to his usual amusing antics.

His favorite smear of late seems to be 'only right wingers support PRT' (Case Closed, 10/18). Recall that he thinks real liberals have to support light rail. Now he's spewing it forth on the website of the Cornell Sun. He writes --

Mountains? More like Moehills [sic!] of Nonsense...

...Let's start with the one mentioned in this opinion piece - JPods:

Even 19-year-old Christopher (ATE) thinks it is a "very immature concept".

...of course, that fact doesn't stop the PRT promoters at Wikipedia from listing it on the Wikipedia PRT page.

Here's a picture of the JPod prototype from the JPod website... note the black duct tape on the windows and the "Support the Troops" sticker.

Will every JPod have a "Support the Troops" sticker?

(ellipses in original)

Mr. Avidor clearly means the Support the Troops sticker means JPods people are right wing; PRT is right wing. Because of a sticker? But don't we all support the troops? It's the Bush policy three-quarters of us oppose. (Furthermore, why would JPods use a sticker to win right wing support, if right wingers are supposed to already support PRT?)

Why is Avidor, someone who says he's a Democrat, sniding support for the men and women in uniform? The Resmuglicans want Americans to think Democrats don't support the troops. Therefore, isn't the Minnesota anti-PRT propagandist in fact supporting the right wing, Resmuglican position?

Nice going, Kenwood.

Ana Ken Avidor vita baby

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Case Closed, or: I win the chess match

The Propagandist smears two liberal politicians

This is good! It's from the Seattle P-I Local Transit Forum. Long, but it's so worth it reading all the way to the Big Finish! (Skip to Big Finish)

Seattle PRT Proponents Excited by Daventry "PRT" Demo


Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/10/07 7:49 p.m.
Last edited at 10/10/07 7:50 p.m.

CETA member Prof. Schneider links to a BBC demo Video:


The Seattle PRT forum is excited about Daventry too:


But, not the ordinary folks in Daventry:


...and the mayor of Daventry quit:


Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/11/07 6:10 a.m. in reply to: #1496672

The Guardian goes Gadgetbahn:

"The Morgantown Personal Rapid Transit project is completed in West Virginia, connecting the city's five university campuses. Purists argue that it is light rail, not PRT"


Seattle's David Gow (Mr Grant) is upset:


...and in Daventry:

"Be positive about Pods":


Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/11/07 8:44 a.m. in reply to: #1496845


'Get off our backs and give us a chance'

By Alice Dyer

DAVENTRY Town Council has hit back at claims it is 'dysfunctional'.
The comments were made in last week’s Daventry Express by Chris Millar, leader of Daventry District Council, following the shock resignation of town mayor Alan Gauton.

He also said there must be something ‘rotten at the core’ of the body, and called for council members to stop squabbling and start serving the public.

Lynne Taylor, town council leader said Cllr’s Millar’s comments were ‘totally unfounded’ and ‘inappropriate’

“To seek to denigrate a public authority and its members without any direct knowledge of the manner in which it conducts its business is improper,” she said.

Mr Gauton quit his role as mayor and chairman of the council because he was unhappy with how the authority was being run.

His departure followed a string of councillors and staff members quitting the authority.

Cllr Taylor admitted the town council had suffered problems recently, but added Daventry was being served by a ‘dynamic’ mix of people dedicated to serving the public.

“So Daventry District Council get off our backs. Give us a chance to show what we can do for the people of Daventry,” she said.

The town council, which currently has five empty seats, was set up four years ago to look after services like hanging baskets, Christmas lights, the war memorial and allotments. It receives more than £300,000 a year of taxpayers’ money.

....how much of that money was spent hosting the PRT pod people?

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/11/07 9:14 a.m. in reply to: #1496874


Decay of 'forgotten' estate

By Alice Dyer

WHILE the rest of the town seems to be heading for prosperity, residents living on a Daventry estate feel they have been forgotten.

As Daventry District Council continues to reveal ambitious plans for the future, including state-of-the-art transport systems, new homes, shops and 21st century facilities, residents say The Grange has been left to fall apart.

Ann Smith, chairman of the Grange Residents’ Association, said: “The estates have been left to go into disrepair. Some parts of The Grange look like a slum.

“The council wants the people of Daventry to be proud of the town they live in, but how can they when it’s like this? It’s like a dumping area now and it’s a mess.”

The Daventry Express visited the estate this week with Mrs Smith and Daventry district councillor Colin Poole to see the worst affected areas.

The whole estate is showing signs of serious neglect with broken paving slabs, vast amounts of weeds, broken benches, damage to the children’s play area, inadequate lighting, bushes growing over walkways and litter.

Walls have been smashed, tiles are falling off walkways and garage doors are hanging off. There is graffiti, boarded up windows and doors, broken fences and glass and children’s toys, furniture and other household items which have been dumped in the street.

Mrs Smith said: “I’m angry – we should not have to live in this squalor.

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/15/07 11:26 a.m. in reply to: #1496881

Why don't you quote the rest of the "Mrs Smith" article, instead of cherrypicking?

"I've lived on The Grange for 30 years and at one time I was so proud to have a house here, but over the past 10 to 15 years, I've watched it go down hill.["]

10 to 15 years! PRT planning in Daventry is 2-3 years old at most. You can't blame PRT for inattentive local government. Read more

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/15/07 3:16 p.m. in reply to: #1500204

Here's some more letters from Daventry...

Pod scheme is up in the air

It will be interesting to see how close the test track along Eastern Way for the proposed new transport system comes to reality.

A brief investigation will show that from a safety standpoint any new PRT system will have to be completely separate from existing pedestrian and vehicle routes.

The potential supplier's own web site states that where the track passes over roads there has to be 5.7 metres of headroom and for pedestrian transit 2.5 metres of headroom.

They also estimate that in an urban environment, such as Daventry, over 90 per cent of the system will have to be elevated. So if the system gets approval, much of it including the stations, will be almost 20 feet up in the air!

How much of the test track will be at this level?

Allan Simmonds

Living in Disneyland?

I wonder if the people of Daventry share the enthusiasm of the council for the proposed PRT system reported last week.
At an estimated cost of £80 million, which will be inevitably optimistic, the comment "the officers in Daventry have the will and motivation to try something that has never been tried before" raises questions about the council's expertise and judgement.

Coming on top of the proposed marina and canal link, would we be wrong in asking whether the councillors are spending too much time on 'Disneyland' dreams instead of concentrating on the town and county management?

It would also be interesting to hear from them where the funds are coming from for the project; the recent conference and the consultancy firm instructed. Personally, I have considerable doubts about the practicalities of the scheme anyway.

G. Pearse
Highlands Drive,

Town is world leader already

Daventry needn't worry about this new pod travel system – as it is already a leader! Leader of the highest petrol prices that is!
For the last four or five months the petrol prices at all garages in Daventry have stayed the same – they do not compete.

The petrol price has gone down everywhere else but Daventry! In the last month I have found petrol in Devon, Somerset, Essex and central London considerably cheaper (up to 5p a litre less) – surprising as the latter two are supposed to be more expensive to live in! Even petrol on the motorway services is the same as Daventry's or cheaper.

Why are we allowing ourselves to be ripped off?
Lets see some competition between the local garages!
G Bottomley
Elder Drive

Tackle the real issues

Well done Daventry District Council, yet another brilliant idea...not!
Pods – well at least the kids will have something to do surfing, shooting, burning and wrecking the pods as they go round.

If there's £80 million on offer why not develop something for them to do, bin these crazy ideas and stop this town going completely down the toilet.

There is too much housing, too many people and so very little to do. I've lived in this town for 39 years and watched it slowly be destroyed by the local council who don't have the town's real population at heart. No police, broken roads, run-down estates, feral kids – these are the issues that need addressing not some hare-brained scheme like pods.
Wake up and smell the coffee DDC.

Name and address

Nice idea but wrong scheme

I have no wish to run down everything Daventry District Council comes up with and indeed it should be applauded for its forward thinking because, like it or not, oil will run out eventually and we must look for alternative soloutions to the car as we know it.
But I have to say I can not really see the pod as a realistic answer because if you think about it a horse and cart, although a lot slower, would be a better form of transport taking you closer to your home and using or causing very little carbon emission.

The pod system is bound to fail while there are still cars giving the public door-to-door conection and if you try to stop the entrance of cars to our shopping centre, people will simply go else where thus killing the town centre.

Leslie Weatherley
Via email

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/15/07 4:49 p.m. in reply to: #1500354

Of course there are skeptical letterwriters. It's a British national pastime.

I think you forgot this story though: "Pods prove a huge hit"

Oh wait, you didn't forget -- you ignored it, you naughty cherrypicker you.

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/15/07 8:25 p.m. in reply to: #1500482


That's what PRT guru J. Edward Anderson said would be the SOP for getting passengers off disabled PRT pods:

Mr. Springer: Is there an evacuation plan

Mr. Ed Anderson: Yes. With cherrypickers, ropes, etc.


BTW... Does anyone know if David Gow is paid to promote PRT?

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/15/07 8:54 p.m. in reply to: #1500653

So? That kind of cherrypicker is a very safe basket on an arm mounted to a big truck. People use them every day. There are also scissors lifts you can put on trucks too.

But everyone who knows PRT (and isn't a PRTphobe) knows Anderson's preferred evacuation plan is for another vehicle to push the breakdown to the next station.

Why so concerned about my compensation, [K#n]? Just puttin' out a general call for snitches now, eh? Would it help if I bought a copy of your book?

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/15/07 9:20 p.m. in reply to: #1500669

Another great answer from J. Edward Anderson:

Question: How do we deal with squirrels, birds, raccoons, etc.?

Answer: Small creatures could nest in the bottom corners of my covered guideway without bothering anything. But, the plan is to build a maintenance vehicle equipped with a light, a television camera, and a high-pressure hose. It will be operated from time to time late at night to inspect the guideway interior to remove debris.

Right, lots of cities are going to want a transportation system that rains soggy critters etc. on pedestrians, buildings and vehicles.

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/15/07 9:35 p.m. in reply to: #1500688

[K#n], you've just given an argument that can also be used to argue that (in your language) "Telephone Poles Are a Joke" and "Power Lines Are a Joke." No one's going to want electricity infrastructure that birds can sit on and poop on your head, or that rain can drip off of!

In fact, why don't you go all the way and call your new blog "Any Tall Thing, That Something Can Fall From Onto Another Thing, is a Joke"?

Prediction: your next talking point in this thread will be PRT can't run in the snow.

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/16/07 6:19 a.m. in reply to: #1500696

Not my "talking point". I read about it it from the Taxi 2000 Corporation prospectus (Risk Factors):

"This technology [Ultra] is different in many respects from the Taxi 2000 technology and has some distinct disadvantages. It uses a larger and heavier guideway that we believe will be more obtrusive and more expensive. It uses larger cars that we believe will be more expensive. Because it uses rotary propulsion and braking, it cannot operate in ice and snow conditions and cannot run at the close headways planned for the Taxi 2000 system. Because it uses battery power, it is speed limited. At this point it lacks a complete control system, as well as other vital features of a commercial product."

BTW... is Morrie Anderson still CEO of Taxi 2000?

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/16/07 6:58 a.m. in reply to: #1500696
Last edited at 10/16/07 7:00 a.m.

... of course, the Taxi 2000 vehicle is unsuited for snow too. The way the sloping roof opens with the door would dump snow (and water if raining) onto the passengers... see photo:


Clearly, the Taxi 2000 pod was designed more to look "futuristic" than practical. Knowing that, the question is why are PRT promoters working so hard to promote it and who is paying them and why?

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/16/07 9:23 a.m. in reply to: #1500852

You mean the Risk Factors document you claimed revealed safety concerns that make PRT unworkable? And then had to backpedal when it turned out to be a standard investor safe harbor statement? Two years ago? Ahhahahahaha!

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/16/07 9:36 a.m. in reply to: #1500877

the Taxi 2000 vehicle is unsuited for snow too. The way the sloping roof opens with the door would dump snow (and water if raining) onto the passengers

Do you know the difference between a prototype and a production model? How WOULD one deal with such a problem? Hmmm... I don't know... how about a gutter, like on the edge of a car roof?

Prediction: your next Talking Point will be PRT doesn't have air conditioning. Instead, why not surf over to Vectus.se, where the new video includes a nice shot of the cabin's HVAC panel.

I must say, [K#n], you are up to your usual quality standards. Recently I corresponded with someone who wrote that he did not respond to your disinformation 2 years ago, because he thought it would help you sharpen your arguments. He is so pleased to have been proven wrong.

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/16/07 11:01 a.m. in reply to: #1500921
Last edited at 10/16/07 11:04 a.m.

That Vectus "HVAC panel" is in a dangerous position for heating a small pod. The lack of headroom means somebody could get a nasty burn on their head if they bumped into it or comes close to it... which is exactly what happens in this video:


The HVAC on the top also means cold feet... maybe not a problem in Seattle, but it would be in Minnesota where it can get pretty darn cold.

Also, it seems PRT is losing support even among the far right-wing of the MN Republican Party:


DFL candidate Elwyn Tinklenberg's campaign told me they will challenge Congresswoman Michele Bachmann on her support for PRT.

So, who are the public officials in Minnesota who support PRT these days, Mr. Gow?

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/16/07 11:17 a.m. in reply to: #1500970

[K#n], you are really making it up now! The HVAC panel will put out enough heat for the small space -- they won't be using it to make stir-fry.

What's more, Vectus is being designed to satisfy SWEDISH weather conditions.

As for Tinklenberg, I wish him luck.

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/16/07 1:39 p.m. in reply to: #1500984

I'm sure you do...

Elwyn Tinklenberg was Transportation Commissioner under Jesse Ventura. Tinklenberg had to put up with anti-LRT, pro-PRT arguments from PRTpromoters like David Morris:


Is David Morris still a supporter of PRT now that LRT is a huge success in Minnesota?

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/16/07 2:01 p.m. in reply to: #1501105
Last edited at 10/16/07 2:03 p.m.

Morris? Why don't call him up and ask him? Or have you given him the Larry Fabian treatment?

Are we really going to keep doing this thing we do? You resurrect some old talking point, I knock it down again, you drop it and raise another one, I debunk that one too? I have nothing but time.

But if it would be more convenient, I have an offer for you. I could design for you a web page that lists all your propaganda in numerical order. Then when you want to troll at, for example, Daily Kos, you can just type "Number 4!" and link to it. Or when you want to ask how I make a living, "Does anyone know if David Gow is Number 17?"

Anyway, it's just an idea. Let me know.

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/16/07 2:16 p.m. in reply to: #1501119

Why can't you view the Daily Kos story on Podcars anymore?

Was the guy who posted that Daily Kos Podcar story the Mayor of Fountain Valley, CA?

Y'know... this guy?:


Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/16/07 2:26 p.m. in reply to: #1500970
Last edited at 10/16/07 2:31 p.m.

[K#n], I knew you'd want to have this information about your "no headroom" talking point (prt.blip.tv) ASAP.

Why should this reporter have trouble when others didn't?

Putting on my old TV Production hat, it is obvious what happened. The cameraman was standing outside and had her framed too high. Being a good TV reporter, she did her best to stay in frame and stood upright too soon.

Should you be able to stand up straight inside? Why? All rides on PRT are intended to be seated.

This was my official debunking of the "no headroom" Talking Point; please make a note of it.

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/16/07 2:29 p.m. in reply to: #1501131
Last edited at 10/16/07 2:33 p.m.

Why can't you view the Daily Kos story on Podcars anymore?

The post-conference article has been reposted on Google Groups in Transport-Innovators, and in SeattlePRT on Yahoo Groups. Sorry, your trolling seems to have been omitted.

But, I saved a copy of the whole page; I can send it to you if you want.

Hope this helps!

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/17/07 4:53 a.m. in reply to: #1501138



Why is he so upset?

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/17/07 9:18 a.m. in reply to: #1501449
Last edited at 10/17/07 9:22 a.m.

Not "upset"; try "outraged." He explains why right there in the Wiki Diff.

Sorry, but what does this have to do with any of the things you have brought up in this thread? Try picking one, and stick to discussing it with others until you understand what you've gotten wrong.

Unless your purpose is not to discuss or understand, but rather just to simply regurgitate Talking Points?

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/17/07 10:00 a.m. in reply to: #1501514

You agree then with this blogger?:


Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/17/07 10:46 a.m. in reply to: #1501536

Agree with what? That you do a fair bit of wiki-editing? I wasn't aware there was any doubt about that. Need me to stipulate to that? OK; or as you would say -- "Whatever."

Again, pick a subject and stick to it. Add to that: be clear.

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/17/07 12:27 p.m. in reply to: #1501558

Wasn't Cincinnati supposed to get a PRT system? What happened with that?

Oh, never mind:


Cincinnati will unveil plans Tuesday on how to pay for a four-mile, $100 million downtown streetcar line that advocates believe will contribute $2 billion to the city’s economy and transform Over-the-Rhine.

The plan’s cheerleaders include politicians, transit activists and urban developers.

Guess all that "debunking" didn't convince anyone.

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/17/07 2:53 p.m. in reply to: #1501625

Kenwood, stop pretending you don't know what happened with Cincinnati.

Coy is not clever.

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/17/07 6:31 p.m. in reply to: #1501727

I thought you would know. The Skyloop website is still up, but it hasn't been updated for a while:


Is Forward Quest going to try to bring up PRT again?

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/17/07 7:39 p.m. in reply to: #1501851

Stop pretending you haven't known the answer to that question since on or before Sept. 26, 2006.

That's two Skyloop questions in a row though. Way to stay focused.

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/17/07 8:32 p.m. in reply to: #1501875

Thank you for reminding me to stay on topic... back to PRT in Daventry:


Straight out of Springfield

This whole 'pod' scheme rings a bell to me. I think DDC has been watching too many episodes of the Simpsons. Episode 71 to be exact, entitled 'Marge Vs. the Monorail'.

The plot focuses around the town of Springfield buying a monorail from a conman, which ends in disaster! By the looks of the size of these pods, you won't fit in them with any shopping and if you have a buggy you can forget it! Does this also mean that the Daventry Dart drivers will be out of a job?

I agree with the recent letters in the Gusher – the pods will just get wrecked by the rogue kids of Daventry.

It's about time they stopped skipping with the pixies and thought about a bowling complex, cinema or something similar for families and teenagers alike to do in their spare time. Let's face it, there's nothing else to do in this town!

The pods are just another thing to add onto the 'list of stupidity' by the council alongside a marina with no canal. If it has the money for the pods why doesn't it have the money to build the canal? It's about time it started asking the residents what they would like, instead of trying to get on the 'global map'. We may be on the map as Cllr Millar states, but it will be as a laughing stock, not for anything great.

T Nairn
Braunston Road
Last Updated: 17 October 2007 3:55 PM

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/17/07 8:46 p.m. in reply to: #1501908

Ohhhh! 'PRT is like the Simpsons monorail episode' -- how original!

Your point is that this is the level of debate that should decide public policy questions? I shall make a note of it.

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/18/07 9:03 a.m. in reply to: #1501921

Please do... and please also make a note of this item from today's SC Times:


"Severson and Rep. Mark Olson, R-Big Lake, called for new approaches to funding and for studying transportation alternatives, such as a system of elevated rails on which small pods travel a fixed route, known as Personal Rapid Transit.

Is Rep. Dan Severson, R-Sauk Rapids a liberal, Mr. Gow?

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/18/07 9:50 a.m. in reply to: #1502066
Last edited at 10/18/07 9:52 a.m.

Hmmm, that rings a bell; why does this sound so familiar -- oh yeah, more Talking Points.

Your conspiracy theory doesn't work -- PRT-endorser EU is not right-wing. [PRT]-developing Sweden is not right-wing. Peter Calthorpe of the Congress for New Urbanism is not right-wing. The Short Elliott firm you hate so much gives more to Democrats. PRT has appeared in a state Democratic platform, but no state GOP platforms that I can find. Where was the federal PRT legislation during the 13 years the Resmuglicans controlled Congress?

Want to dump Smoochy Bachmann and Slappy Olson? I hope you do. But PRT is still just a technology. And you are, like today's weather, all wet.

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/18/07 1:58 p.m. in reply to: #1502066
Last edited at 10/18/07 2:00 p.m.

Hey Nedken,

I knows you loves your Flash videos, so you and your fan club should watch this one of Gus Ayer (you know, the guy you spammed at Daily Kos) at the Uppsala conference. He talks about using PRT to do sustainable smart development and reduce automobile use. In the Q&A he also decries the right-wing news media.

Then watch this video of the other politician who spoke in favor of PRT -- an Uppsala official from the Social Democrats. That's the democratic socialists, Kenworth.

Are THEY liberals, Mr. [Av!d@r]?

Lots of other videos from the conference too.

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/18/07 3:01 p.m. in reply to: #1502186

There will always be a few left-wingers like Zimmermann... but I think we all know what motivated him now.

PRT has no support among the DFL leadership in the MN Legislature.

Thanks for that Podcar page, Mr. Gow. I especially liked the presentation by Chris Perkins of Unimodal/Skytran... funny when his computer crashed.

He mentioned grants from the USDOT and NASA for Unimodal... is that true? I can't find anything about it on the web.

Thanks again.

Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/18/07 3:27 p.m. in reply to: #1502204
Last edited at 10/18/07 3:36 p.m.

"left-wingers like Zimmermann"

So liberals who support PRT, from anywhere in the world, are corrupt?

That is a smear of breathtaking proportions, and a conspiracy of impossible complexity.

My post specifically asked you about Ayer, and Pelling of Uppsala. Do you have any proof they are corrupt?

Posted by PRTskeptic at 10/18/07 9:08 p.m. in reply to: #1502215

I was only talking about Zimmermann.


Posted by Mr_Grant at 10/18/07 10:41 p.m. in reply to: #1502353
Last edited at 10/18/07 10:44 p.m.

No, I'm afraid you can't get out of it that easily. Rewind:

1. You wrote @1502066 "Is Rep. Dan Severson, R-Sauk Rapids a liberal, Mr. Gow?" Which is part of your Talking Point that only right-wingers support PRT.

2. @1502186 I wrote about Gus Ayer and the "Uppsala official" Pelling, and asked you "Are THEY liberals, Mr. [Labridor]?"

3. Your answer immediately following @1502204: "There will always be a few left-wingers like Zimmermann... but I think we all know what motivated him now." Anyone who knows your 'work' knows this means Zimmermann was convicted for taking bribes.

Your meaning clearly was Ayer and Pelling are like Zimmermann, corrupt.

4. After I called you on this smear, your excuse @1502353: "I was only talking about Zimmermann." REALLY? You were answering a question about Ayer and Pelling! Why then bring up the corrupt Zimmermann at all?

The fact, Kenthorpe, is that you have no evidence that PRT is a right wing anti-transit conspiracy, you never have, and you never will. When shown liberals who support PRT you smear them. Your 'strategy' is nothing more than smearing any PRT supporter and adding them to your list of conspirators.

You are just like the right wingers you claim to oppose: when challenged with truth and facts you attack the messenger.

Ladies and gentlemen, I rest my case.


Hope you enjoyed it!

The thread in the P-I Forum (while it lasts, they clear old threads)

Oct. 19 -- The last entry has been deleted! Who ran crying to mommy this time??? (I have reposted an edited version, we'll see what happens)

Here is the repost:


No, I'm afraid you can't get out of it that easily. Rewind:

1. You wrote @1502066 "Is Rep. Dan Severson, R-Sauk Rapids a liberal, Mr. Gow?" Which is part of your Talking Point that only right-wingers support PRT.

2. @1502186 I wrote about Gus Ayer and the "Uppsala official" Pelling, and asked you "Are THEY liberals, Mr. [MN anti-PRT propagandist]?"

3. Your answer immediately following @1502204: "There will always be a few left-wingers like Zimmermann... but I think we all know what motivated him now." Anyone who knows your 'work' knows this means Zimmermann was convicted for taking bribes.

4. After I called you on this, your excuse @1502353: "I was only talking about Zimmermann." REALLY? You were answering a question about Ayer and Pelling! Why then bring up the corrupt Zimmermann at all?

The fact is that you have no evidence that PRT is a right wing anti-transit conspiracy, do you?

It doesn't exist, even though you've had this and other opportunities to present it.

Ladies and gentlemen, I rest my case.

Oct. 21-- He can't wait to tar Ithaca liberal with the Zimmermann brush; maybe it's artistic envy?

Ken Avidor keeps his face in a jar by the door

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Kenwood Milhous Nixidor

Now that I have the honor of being #1 on the Minnesota anti-PRT propagandist's new enemies list, I am starting to notice all sorts of amazing similarities and differences between him and #37.

Not trusted by Eisenhower Born during Eisenhower Administration
Claimed to find microfilm inside pumpkin Head shaped like pumpkin
Saw Commies around every corner Sees PRTistas behind every Republican, vice versa
Gave Checkers speech about receiving gift of a cocker spaniel Once lost game of checkers to cocker spaniel
A leader of the Red Scare
Claims PRT is anti-transit
Said "Sock it to me" on Laugh-In Uses sock-puppetry on the internets
Closest advisors: Ehrlichman, Haldeman Ned Luddington
Agnew Joe Sixpack/Twelvepack
Secretly bombed Cambodia Publicly bombed in Wikipedia conflict-of-interest accusations
Broke into the Watergate looking for dirt on Lawrence O'Brien
Said F-word to Lawrence Fabian on the phone
Broke into office of Daniel Ellsberg's psychiatrist
Implies smart people are crazy, have meltdowns
Talked to Kissinger in darkest hours
Talked to Ned Luddington
"Let me make this perfectly clear"Muddies and confuses the issues
Agnew evaded income taxes
Reported CPRT to IRS
Negotiated with Chinese
Once wrote he wouldn't talk to me anymore
Dirty tricks made Ed Muskie cryLame tricks make PRT supporters laugh
Resigned in disgraceI am resigned to fact that he'll always act disgracefully

Does Ken Avidor lose his flavor on the bedpost overnight?

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Dump Mark Olson Blog - Now Bogus on Two Continents®

Heya PRTistas, here's what's in the non-news today: the Minnesota anti-PRT propagandist is now trying to blame neighborhood problems in central England on PRT! He quotes the Daventry Express:

Daventry District Council Promoted PRT While Neglecting Neighborhoods

WHILE the rest of the town seems to be heading for prosperity, residents living on a Daventry estate feel they have been forgotten.

As Daventry District Council continues to reveal ambitious plans for the future, including state-of-the-art transport systems, new homes, shops and 21st century facilities, residents say The Grange has been left to fall apart.
Mrs Smith said: "I’m angry – we should not have to live in this squalor.["]

Don't worry, Mrs. Smith you're going to have your pod in the sky by and by.

Unless Mark "Slappy" Olson is planning to run for Mayor of Daventry, this is just another irrelevant front in Ken Avidor's propaganda war against a technology.

Kenny-Boy's linkage -- PRT is planned, therefore neighborhood policy is impacted -- shows a willful, pretend-ignorance of the complexities of community affairs.

As you probably already expect, PRT has zero to do with the issue. First:

Daventry's PRT planning is not stand-alone, but rather only one part in an overall growth-planning process. Daventry is anticipating an influx of 40,000 new residents by the year 2021. This requires plans for jobs, services and utilities, housing, transportation, etc. In other words, Daventry would be doing this planning whether PRT is on the table or not.

Second: Daventry is working under sustainability mandates for development, and needs to meet emissions goals. Transport and reducing aggregate emissions -- including car exhaust -- is part of that. In other words, Daventry would be planning some kind of new transit system whether PRT is on the table or not. 
Finally, let's return to the Mrs. Smith interviewed in the Express story:
"I've lived on The Grange for 30 years and at one time I was so proud to have a house here, but over the past 10 to 15 years, I've watched it go down hill.["]

Huh. "10 to 15 years." PRT planning in Daventry is 2-3 years old at most. 
If there has been a failure in policy regarding The Grange in Daventry, it has been a long time coming and, like in any town, will be addressed as part of a local process. In fact, it appears as though the town has taken some steps toward improving the district (1, 2). Whether it is sufficient, whether it's happening fast enough, what other steps can be taken, and its ranking among all issues are, again, a local political matter.

And irrelevant to the development of Personal Rapid Transit. Avidor could have just as easily blamed The Grange's 'neglect' on the new homes and shops also being planned!

Mr. Avidor of Minneapolis needs to spend less time worrying about planning in England, and more time trying to Dump Mark Olson (please!).

Also Oct. 11 -- Same paper, same reporter: Pods Prove a Huge Hit.
Oct. 12 -- Daventry Express isn't with him, so he's against them
Oct. 13 -- I make Nixidor's Enemies List

Ken Avidor is bogus - dump Roadkill Bill

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Hello Minnesota 6th Congressional District!

Nedken Luddidor the Minnesota anti-PRT propagandist is posting at Dump Bachmann again. You'll never guess on what subject -- oh, who am I kidding. It's PRT again.

Michele Bachmann voiced her support for Rep. Mark Olson's and Gary Dean Zimmermann's Personal Rapid Transit scheme... Bachmann also sponsored legislation for PRT when she was a state senator.

The next paragraph is a litany of distorted or already-disproven talking points about a technology, not Bachmann, so I'll spare you from mentioning them here.

I'm a recovering politician, though, so one observation does leap to mind:

PRT is not an issue in Congress.

Don't want to spend money to develop PRT? I think the majority of Minnesotans have already spoken on that through their legislators. Taxi 2000 has received no tax incentives or exemptions from the state, and likely never will. You have been protected from PRT. Move on!

Might PRT receive Federal money someday? Maybe. But it would have to pass the rigorous criteria of either the USDOT's Large or Small Starts programs. In other words, such funds for PRT would be extensively reviewed by a Kucinich Administration (okay, more likely a Clinton Administration, but you know what I mean). Move on!

Maybe I'm spoiled. I've got Jim McDermott; maybe I don't fully appreciate what it's like to have a loony right-wingnut like Bachmann representing me. I would share Sunny Jim with you if I could, honest. But all I can do is urge you to Dump Bachmann! Please!

But how is the Dump Bachmann Blog going to do that effectively, how are you going to convince the all-important swing voters, if one of your Dump Bachmann Team is wasting his time obsessing about non-issue PRT?

Move on! Health insurance, Iraq, the economy, the deficit, civil liberties, and a host of other issues need solutions from a progressive majority. Labridor's PRT obsession is a distraction from that.

Remember 2006? Didn't the Propagandist write then,
When is MPR going to ask Bachmann about her promoting and writing legislation for PRT? MPR did a couple of stories on PRT and even quoted Bachmann a few years ago....


Why Has Bachmann's promotion of PRT gone down the memory hole? Source

Of course, Bachmann was then elected. And didn't Lloydletta's Eric Zaetsch then write that PRT "probably was a non-issue"? So why would it be an issue this time?

But something tells me that a certain Minneapolis cartoonist is going to persist in making PRT the centerpiece of his Dump Bachmann efforts in 2008. It worked so well last time, didn't it?

Ken Avidor is the +/- 3% margin of error

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Where does the Propagandist keep his money...

... if he's against savings accounts???

..."right-wing libertarians who think everything should be privatized and "personal"; personal saivngs [sic] accounts, personal rapid transit... you get the picture." Source

Under a mattress buried in Ken Avidor's back yard?

Reminder - Vectus PRT is not Raytheon PRT...

... even though the Minnesota anti-PRT propagandist keeps claiming otherwise.

There is merely a superficial resemblance.

Also today: See the first official Vectus video (Quicktime format)

Ken Avidor needs his eyes checked

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Propagandist-TC Daily Planet love affair kaput

Remember when Ken Avidor the Minnesota anti-PRT propagandist was wearing the vaunted mantle of Transportation Editor of the Twin Cities Daily Planet? Yes, he got a lot of mileage out of it for a while, using the title to gain credibility in pushing his disinformation -- such as here, here and here.

Then in June we noticed it had been quite some time since he had written anything for TCDP. His name disappeared from the masthead.* A series of articles on light rail appeared on TCDP -- not written by him, but by one Jane McClure. (At that time a Minneapolis source said of McClure, "If TC Daily Planet has Jane McClure, they are starting to gain a lot of credibility in my book. She is great... really informative without being biased.")

After some period of silence, the gloves came off and, suddenly, Avidor attacked his old mates -- in a long post at Lloydletta's Nooz (sic) he implies that TCDP editor Mary Turck pulled and changed an article about a proposed biomass plant due to a complaint from the office of Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak.

The background on the biomass plant is pretty irrelevant to our present purpose -- he obfuscates with a lot of smoke about the project's history, with zero linkage to the revision issue. What is notable is that Avidor manages to knit himself the start of a conspiracy theory: it seems a law firm involved in the project was also involved in the Avidor-hated 35W access project. Yes, believe it or not, a law firm has more than one client.

For her part, Turck responded that she was exercising this thing known as editorial judgment, and actually made the contested article longer -- and also corrected basic factual errors. Which is funny, because it means Avidor is on Turck's case partly because she fixed mistakes, something he has never done (for instance).

Phew! I hate it when mommy and daddy fight.

What caused the relationship to sour? Avidor's own account of the breakup makes it clear that original TCDP editor Craig Cox made two fatal mistakes: he asked Avidor to write for free but paid others and, in an article for Harvard's Nieman Foundation for Journalism, Cox failed to mention Avidor by name. The ever-prickly Ken also took exception with Cox's opinion that amateur journalists may not have the time or training to always provide quality and reliable reporting.
Cox and Turck had better be careful; Avidor might give them the Zoe Naylor treatment (see Nov. 5).

I got me a Chrysler as big as a Ken Avidor, it's about to set sail
* Though at this time Avidor's commercial Roadkill Bill website is still listed in the Transportation section under "Helpful Links."