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

Saturday, December 31, 2011


What's that sound? No, not Baby New Year approaching -- it's the PRT Is a Joke IS A JOKE archives, ringing with the echoes of the past 12 months of Ken Avidor's hysterical, often paranoid crackpottery.

So take another look at his 2011 babblings as exposed herein, and have another chuckle.

Let's close the year, however, by putting Avidor's rantings in perspective. The zeitgeist was protest, in which The 99% of many nations began to push back against corporate and military thugs.

Not only does Avidor's laffable Luddite propaganda pale in comparison, his ongoing claim of a vast PRT-based anti-transit conspiracy is as Opposite as Wall Street's delusion that Poor People somehow tricked the banks and Alan Greenspan into giving them bad mortgages.

Ken is so extreme that he tried to interest the Occupy movement in joining his Luddite holy war.

With that said -- have a Happy and Propaganda-Free New Year!

and Wiseline Institute defray basic web expenses

Monday, December 19, 2011

It Takes A Luddite

The holiday season is such a hectic time, isn't it? Why, I'm so busy with various preparations that I have to save my blogging for late at night. This very post -- despite being published at 8 am Pacific time -- is being written a little after 1 am Pacific time.

Which is inconvenient, since for the past couple weeks I've also been working on a sorta-investigative piece over at This Week In Precipitation, the PRT NewsCenter blog. Go check it out, it also published at 8 am.

The research for the story required a little more time than I had. So last week I sent out an SOS on Twitter:

...and so on.

My intention was to get Ken Avidor to help me out by doing some research into @cymply -- the Twitter handle of Graham Cockroft of MaglevMovers.com -- for me.

I had to retweet the same group of tweets several times before Ken picked up on it, but eventually I was rewarded with this post at the PRT Moondoggie blog.

Thanks Ken! I just want to give you full credit in this space for ferreting out that salacious item. I knew it would be right up your alley.

Update 1: Ken Avidor is rapidly becoming the go-to guy on Portuguese RV campgrounds

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Another Luddite Veto

Today's Ken Avidor/Dump Bachmann coverage of Personal Rapid Transit in Amritsar, Punjab is pretty good -- if you like omission of balancing quotes, lack of cultural context, and no content about Krazy Eyes herself. It's a bait-and-switch.

That's right, the Laffable Luddite blogger who recently mocked an Indian newspaper's use of "operationalized" as though it were not a real word is now Extremely Concerned about shopkeepers in Amritsar who
apprehend that the system would adversely hit their business.

The foundation stone was laid outside the Hall Gate where shopkeepers raised anti-government slogans and staged dharnas. [emphasis not in original] 

Ken is Extremely Concerned because -- oh, did I mention the screaming headline on his post?
Shopkeepers in India Are Fasting in Protest Against the Personal Rapid Transit Boondoggle

A dharna is "a fast held at the door of an offender in India as an appeal for justice."

Not the first time, pRT [sic] has provoked a mass protest, read; "Pod Off! Residents oppose Daventry PRT scheme".

Here's the cultural context: dharnas actually are a prevalent form of protest in India, found in situations major and minor, in both the public and private spheres. Dharnas are not extreme last resorts like hunger strikes in the West because, Ken, India is a different culture. To see what I mean, just look up "dharna" in Google News.

And, true to form, Avidor also fails to look for articles explaining the Government's response to the merchant's concerns. Avidor doesn't do it, so I will:
[Dep. Chief Min.] Badal said that this new technology transport system not only facilitate [sic] the pilgrims coming to Golden Temple but also proved to be beneficial for the local business, as it would attract more tourists to the city. He said that as the main station of this PRT system would be in Hall Gate bazaar of the city, thus, it would multiply the business opportunities for local vendors. "Moreover, the POD would run at height more [sic] than the nearby shops, the system would provide traffic and hindrance free access to these shops", he added. Source

Avidor also pretends to weep over how advertising on PRT structures "Would be a hideous visual scar on the historic city"...

...as though Amritsar is not already a massive urban area that has -- yes -- buildings as tall or taller than PRT, and advertising:
How are each day's thousands of pilgrims supposed to get through congestion like this? Avidor doesn't want to let the local authorities decide. Flickr Photo: rwoan

And NO RELEVANCE TO BACHMANN, other than the usual 'she got her cooties on it when she was a state senator.'

Bottom line: the Laffable Luddite is once again trying to interfere in local decisionmaking, just as he has in England, Alameda and Richmond, California.  He claims PRT is a right wing conspiracy, yet the only reason he knows about any pod transit project in any country is because planning for them is occurring in public view. Whether they proceed is up to each locality. Ask
Ken Avidor why he cares so much, and make him be factual and consistent.


Ken, what did you mean by:

"Polish PRT?"

Ken Avidor (@Daily Kos)
read the PRTJJ coverage

UPDATE 1: The Amritsar pod public transit system would be used by the more than a million religious pilgrims a year who visit the Golden Temple. An Avidor fan equates them with rich people crossing cities in helicopters in order to avoid seeing slums:

UPDATE 2: (12/15/2011) Today a Ken tweet leads to one inescapable conclusion -- he believes transit competes for fares against taxis and rickshaws* ONLY IN INDIA:

Also that the planning/decisionmaking roles of the local Amritsar government and Punjab state government are not worth mentioning -- on Planet Avidorpia the "British Automated Pod Corporation" is doing it all!

"#occupy," Ken? Really?

UPDATE 3: (12/16/2011) Desperate to blunt today's NY Times coverage of Amritsar, Ken is now blogging and tweeting about comments by a grumpypants Heathrow traveler who thought 25 mph "felt" too slow, didn't like that the pods were busy, didn't like emergency exit hatches, and didn't like that the pod's windows didn't let him look directly forward or behind. Ken also issues a call for  an:
I don't know what experts would ever satisfy Avidor, since he doesn't want a state department of transportation involved.

Irony of The Year: Ken Avidor is putting stock in the opinion of someone who didn't like riding on his pod with strangers:

Ken has always tried to claim people who don't like riding with strangers love PRT.

UPDATE 4: By the way, this photo which Ken thought showed "a hideous visual scar" on historic Amritsar

It's not even Amritsar. It's Gurgaon.

Leave Laffy Alone!

* Taxis and autorickshaws burn petrol, Ken! 

Sunday, December 04, 2011

It's a two-fer

He couldn't get a quote right to save his life

It's hard to pick which category to file this one under -- Fact Check or Worst Expert In The World.

Remember when context-challenged Ken Avidor claimed snow shut down the Morgantown PRT, but it was really a power failure caused by an automobile crash? This is like that. But it's also like the time he claimed I thought my Twitter feed is 'private.'

A screengrab is worth a thousand words:

It's a two-fer! Not only is Ken Avidor caught in the act of taking someone out of context, it also reveals he doesn't know 'new Twitter' shows you the thread right there!

UPDATE 1: He removes the context AGAIN! (12/14/2011) Link

I tweeted:

...and Avidor quotes it as:

Is Avidor content to leave it here, and limit the damage to himself (@GottaLaff has over 18,000 Followers, versus Avidor's 501)? Of course not, he continues the kerfuffle -- finishing it off with an arrogant flourish:

(Firedoglake? Why doesn't Ken ever promote the time he got his clock cleaned at Democratic Underground?)
Thanks for this Christmas present Ken , it's exactly what I wanted!

Update 2: No Comprende Subset (3/22/2013) Link

Ken went after another humorist on Twitter last weekend, this time it was the actual Lizz Winstead (72,726 followers). Let the record show Avidor has trouble distinguishing between "ALL" Minnesotans and a subset thereof:

Oh, but it didn't end there.

By the way, "goo.gl/G65rl" links to Dump Bachmann blog ('Dumping Bachmann since 2005 or possibly 2004'), where Ken duplicates his error and amplifies it with a huffy 'buy my book' (as in "just follow the money"!) post.
He thinks he was being polite!

First Laffy, now Lizz. Ken, what's your problem with funny women?

Leave Laffy Alone!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Mr. Accuracy's Thanksgiving Weekend

Ken "Mr. Accuracy" Avidor (the guy who thought Google Maps predicts the future) has his panties in a twist over how the PRT industry uses the word innovative

Need I say more?

Thursday, November 03, 2011


Now, we know Ken shares our distaste for fundamentalist Christians, since it is a fixture of his work with Dump Bachmann (motto: "Dumping Bachmann since 2005 or possibly 2004").

But "Faith-Based Pie-in-the-Sky Boondoggle Cybertran Partner's Right-Wing, Anti-Abortion Tweets" takes him into smeary territory that is darker and intolerant. Because the Richmond Confidential article isn't about the right-wing partner (Allen Payton), the focus is on Eugene Nishinaga:
CyberTran: Small start-up has big dreams
By: Alexis Kenyon | October 31, 2011 – 4:05 pm

For Eugene Nishinaga, the chief technical officer at CyberTran International, ultralight rail is nothing short of a spiritual awakening.

"I was actually driving on the highway, right outside the [Richmond] field station," he said, "totally coincidence — and I felt the call of God."

The call was the impetus for a major shift in Nishinaga's life. At the time, he was a
respected research and development manager for BART with nearly 40 years experience in transit. But in 2008, Nishinaga, 58, quit his job to take a position at CyberTran International -- an ultralight rail start-up based out of UC Berkeley's Richmond Field Station.
Avidor needs to discredit Nishinaga because the man is an expert in conventional transit who is now trying to make innovative technology a reality. Therefore Avidor uses the old bait-and-switch -- in the headline promising Payton, but leading with Nishinaga. Equating them.

I don't know what Nishinaga's political views are, but the way his religious views are characterized in the story (he felt a 'calling', he wanted to become a pastor and join the ministry) is so neutral as to reveal nothing that is inherently fundamentalist OR liberal.

The point is that Avidor doesn't know what Nishinaga's ideology is either. But because of Cybertran, Avidor goes ahead and smears Nishinaga anyway, because he needs Nishinaga to be just like Payton.

Today we also see Ken attempt to practice the journalism basic known as 'establishing a pattern':
It is not surprising to find faith-based jargon among supporters of Personal Rapid Transit. PRT is essentially a faith-based concept - check out Higherway PRT brought to you by the inventor of the Savior Cycle.
But the pattern here is that the person is religious, not how they are religious. Avidor is just indiscriminately (or discriminately) putting all religious people in the same basket.

He doesn't know anything about Higherway inventor Tad Winiecki, he just sees another Christian like Nishinaga who, in his mind, must be just like Allen Payton. And, presumably by extension, just like Michele Bachmann.

Except I happen to know that Tad Winiecki is definitely not like Bachmann:
On March 21st, 2007, Tad Winiecki said:

I have noticed what I consider far too much name calling, attributed motives by association, and denigration of opponents in most public forums and especially blogs related to partisan politics. I was trained to be a scientist so this is against my usual way of thinking. It bothers me when Republicans refer to the "democrat party" rather than the "Democratic Party". It makes me want to call them the "publican party"...

On June 19th, 2007, Tad Winiecki said:

"He who oppresses the poor to increase his wealth and he who gives gifts to the rich – both come to poverty." Proverbs 22:16 (NIV)

Corporate welfare – gifts to the rich – bothers me. A bad example in Washington State (and many similar cases elsewhere) was tearing down the Kingdome in Seattle and building a new stadium. It cost us poor taxpayers and benefitted rich team owners and players. Uneconomic deals with extraction industries such as oil companies are also giving to the rich. The Republican Medicare prescription drug plan was a gift to rich drug companies. We could go on and on, couldn’t we?
Ken could have known this too. But he is not duly diligent.

Religious intolerance. Somewhat ironic for someone who is waging a holy war against new transit technology.

The Luddite Veto (September)


Monday, October 10, 2011


Anyone (such as, oh I don't know -- Current TV Urban Mobility and Dominic Blackwell Cooper?) who wants to see how Ken Avidor argues against personal rapid transit, check out his latest blog entry at the PRT Moondoggie:

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Humphrey School's Ferrol Robinson is calling it ART, but it's the same old PRT. You can download the silly report at the CTS website.

Bottom line:
The budget to complete a feasibility study and related outreach and education efforts is estimated at $1.4 million, and the anticipated study duration is two years.
This would be a total waste of money.

Other states have wasted money on feasibility studies for PRT. MnDOT can just look up these reports:

Here's the conclusion of the OKI report on PRT (PDF):
Personal Rapid Transit

Due to the uncertainty of the technology and costs, Personal Rapid Transit (Taxi 2000) is not recommended as preferred technology [sic, emphasis not in original] for the loop circulator. The Committee encourages Taxi 2000 to continue to develop the design and construct a full-scale test track to address critical questions regarding engineering design, operational feasibility and cost.
Of course, all the "critical questions" remain unanswered because they cannot be answered without a true PRT system in revenue service. But many of the critical questions could be answered by a peer-reviewed study - this study should not be done by MnDOT, but by experts in the urban studies, transportation and engineering fields.

Calling a report "silly" is pretty much the extent of Ken's analytical abilities. But why is he afraid to have the Minnesota Department of Transportation examine a transit technology? Because that agency already has a PRT program (started under GOP governor Pawlenty and continuing under DFL's Dayton) that is not biased against the technology, so that's no good to Ken .

No, Ken 's going to claim PRT feasibility studies are a waste of money. Why bother, he seems to say, lookit all these other feasibility studies.  One of the three he cites, the New York one, isn't even a feasibility study -- it's a paper by a Master of Social Work on the subject of how senior citizens might benefit from a personalized public transit system.

The OKI report is a typical Avidor talking point, he keeps citing it despite being conclusively refuted.

And the New Jersey feasibility study is typical of all studies of emerging technologies -- there is by definition insufficient performance data due to their emerging nature.

The New Jersey study notes where there is insufficient data and recommends further efforts to obtain it because it is practicing objective full disclosure. The exercise of full disclosure doesn't prove or disprove anything, and is certainly not a valid basis for arguing those further efforts "would be a total waste of money."

Saying something is insufficiently proven, then campaigning against getting proof so you can continue arguing it is unproven, is circular -- a Ken Avidor hallmark. It's one of two circular arguments today, the other being opposing a $1.4 million feasibility study as a waste of money, but then proposing another study that would -- presumably -- cost money as well.

Monday, October 03, 2011

Luddite fires his loose cannon

We can't think of any other reason Ken Avidor would need to smear Richmond City Council progressives such as Dr. Jeff Ritterman, so the only reason, the Single Issue, is Personal Rapid Transit.

Apparently realizing his attack on Richmond, California's support for CyberTran conflicts with his Only Right Wingers Support PRT talking point, Avidor has doubled down on the smear.

Now he's blogging that the liberals on the Richmond city council aren't real liberals. No, apparently they're:
Self-described "progressive" members of the Richmond, California City Council

And to deepen the smear, Ken uses the tried and true Sarah Palin tactic, Questionin' The Associations.  In Ken Avidor's universe, progressive Jeff Ritterman is a "progressive" (in airheadquotes) because of the involvement of one Allen Payton.

It's Ken's same old Cooties talking point -- he says if you're for PRT you're Just Like Bachmann, you're for Bachmann's Boondoggle, because she got her cooties on it in 2004. Never mind the DFL (Democratic)-dominated bipartisan agreement on PRT.

What Avidor means is: Councilman Ritterman's support for new transit technology means nothing because I say it has GOP cooties -- in fact it means Ritterman isn't a real progressive.

Yet inconsistent Ken (and his Twitter proxies who pretend to miss the point) remains in favor of light rail despite it being infested by Heritage Foundation founder Paul Weyrich's cooties. It's Ken's standard, not mine.

Not only does Ken Avidor want veto power over your local transit policies, he's also annointed himself the go-to litmus tester to vet your elected officials for you.

What a dick-tator.

But the blog post "http://t.co/eb5eAKiU" contains no mention of Greens (23:09 PDT).
I don't care for U.S. Greens -- not enough experience in governance -- but that doesn't mean they deserve to be lied about. 

Update 2 (10/7) - He continues to push the Conservative Cooties angle in attempt to shame California Democratic elected officials. Basically, whether you call it a hotel project, economic development, or whatever, Ken Avidor is opposing transit-oriented development in Richmond.
Archive: Against it before he was for it -- Avidor sides with opponents of Smart Growth in Alameda

He continues to try to suck up to Current TV (after attacking it) in the Comments:
  • Only Avidor would call realism "dampening expectations." The reality is that ULTra's India partner is proceeding with a system in dense Amritsar, in the state of Punjab.
  • Also, there is no nasty political battle in Richmond over Cybertran. The city is pursuing a lobbying effort, any controversy will be due to Avidor (or other out-of-town proxies) creating one. 


Thursday, September 29, 2011

On the occasion of the approval of an Amritsar PRT

Today we take note of the Punjab Infrastructure Development Board's approval of an urban PRT for the city of Amritsar, India.

Let's see what Ken Avidor the Minnesota anti-PRT propagandist has said about Amritsar. Please welcome back Mr. Side By Side Comparison:

Avidor sez:Meh:
With only "revenue service trials" at Heathrow completed, ULTra has teamed up with Fairwood India to propose building an ambitious PRT system in Amritsar, India.
"The Personal Rapid Transport (PRT) – developed by our ULTra PRT, UK – is a revolutionary new transportation system, which has been operationalized in London (Heathrow airport) after 20 years of development."
Yes, Ken, "operationalized." It's a word, the past participle of operationalize, meaning to make operational.

I know what this is! This is like that one time, when your only comment about the M.I.S.T.E.R. PRT was "Polish PRT?" -- isn't it, Ken?

They speak English in India, Ken, English is one of India's two official languages. You might have heard of a little thing called the Raj?
The map for the Amritsar PRT is here. There is no indication that the citizens of Amritsar had any input in creating the route and the proposed destinations on the map. There has already been criticism that the PRT project "would harm historic Walled City of Amritsar and would hamper tourism in the city. He's pulling it out of his butt. He has no idea what public input had occurred or was planned, or what Indian law requires. We can pretty much count on it being different from how we do it in America since, you know, it's a different country.

Actually, the whole purpose of the PRT project is to serve some of the 100,000 religious pilgrims a week who visit (some might say tour) the city's world-famous Golden Temple. How could a low-profile transit system possibly get in the way of that?
One reason that PRT never goes anywhere is the PRT guys never engage the public in any meaningful way.

Dec. 4, 2010
It's not the job of "the PRT guys" to engage the public, "the PRT guys" don't make the decisions. Officials of the various state and city jurisdictions are the ones who lead the process, they are answerable to their citizens.

I'm going to assume whatever public input regulations they have were followed, since India is the world's most biggest democracy.

We know what kind of public engagement Ken likes. He likes it when the citizens are angry about PRT, because that's the output of his international Luddite propaganda campaign, waged in website comment forums and in the op-ed pieces he has gotten published from time to time.

Ken loves when citizens get angry about PRT, and I'm sure he's helped stir it up. When the District government of Daventry, England was planning PRT, Ken gleefully posted and reposted the public's negative, "pod off" reaction to the project (See? Governments do engage the public about PRT). When I was doing background research on the Daventry planning process, I communicated with a District official who said they had received anti-PRT cartoons. Gee, I wonder who sent those.

An angry populace is also no doubt what Ken was hoping for when he was agitating against the PRT initiative by the municipal government of Winona, Minnesota. A centerpiece of his campaign involved drawing attention to local Teabagger opposition to PRT, in the form of Teabag city council candidate Joshua Chasco. Nobody disrupts a town hall meeting like Teabaggers.

Teabaggers disrupt town hall meeting on health care reform, 2009


Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Luddite Veto

Something I've had a chance to write a lot about lately is the subject of transit as a public good -- meaning it's a service delivered by the public, not private, sector of the economy.1 2

The public is highly familiar with the effects transit lines and stations have on land use and the community fabric. It is this public interest that has made transit a public good that is very much controlled at the local level.  Elected representatives and the agencies who work for them are responsible for planning, operating and maintaining our transit systems for all.

Transit is a highly visible and much discussed subject in our cities; transit attracts as much community attention as public safety, schools and property taxes.

Yet Ken Avidor does not respect the decisions that come out of these local processes. Correction -- he only respects local decisionmaking when it decides against personal rapid transit.

Such has been the central part of Ken Avidor's (possibly) decades-long anti-PRT strategy: meddle in other communities' affairs.3 This is the action of someone who doesn't respect or trust citizens' abilities to make their own decisions -- Ken Avidor, the world's worst 'expert' at anything, wants veto power over your transit decisions.

Tragic Waste of Taxpayers' Dollars on Gadgetbahn in Richmond, California

...The latest suckers to fall for the gadgetbahn flim-flam is Richmond, California:
The City Council will spend $20,000 to lobby for a federal transportation grant to help light-rail company CyberTran develop 13 ultralight rail stations throughout the city — a transit system, in the words of city leaders and CyberTran’s CEO, that would be clean, efficient, and create 20,000 jobs in the next decade.
And where is the $$$ going?
[City Councilman Dr. Jeff] Ritterman went to Washington D.C. with CyberTran’s team this July to lobby for the federal transportation funding. The $20,000 approved by the city Tuesday will go to the law firm Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, which will seek infrastructure funding from the Federal Transit Administration’s Surface Transportation Program.
See, when a city says Yes to PRT it's because their local planners and democratically elected leaders are suckers!

Three things here:

1. How does Ken think you get federal funds? I know, he doesn't know: he doesn't even know the difference between grants and earmarks. One of the ways you do it is you hire a firm with federal expertise; a partner in Manatt Phelps is Mickey Kantor (D) -- you know, Bill Clinton's (D) Commerce Secretary Mickey Kantor. This makes Richmond's proposal stronger, and Ken hates that.

2. In the cosmic scheme of things, nothing is further from "tragic" than a city investment of $20,000 in an attempt to get 20,000 jobs. A reason Richmond is working with CyberTran (a frequent target of Avidor wrath) is that it is a local Richmond business. Ken, on the other hand, is a couple thousand miles away in Minnesota.

3. And who are the people Ken is calling "suckers"? Well, the bio of Councilman Jeff Ritterman (D) says, among other things, that he's a cardiologist, was a VISTA volunteer, and has organized and delivered medical supplies to victims of apartheid in South Africa and to refugees in Central America and Iraq. Ritterman is the one who introduced Richmond's resolution of solidarity with Wisconsin public employees. Wow Ken, you found a real villain lurking behind PRT!

Another example of a civic-minded progressive -- and a Democrat4 -- working for PRT. Ken Avidor keeps linking Michele Bachmann to PRT as though she invented it; but she has done zero for PRT in Congress. The last Republican to do anything federal for PRT was that liberal Nixon.

3. The other part of his strategy is Shaming Liberal Opinionmakers Who Dare Support or Report Favorably On PRT, like Debbie Cook (D). Recent examples include Josh Marshall, Al Gore's Current TV, and 350.org

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Great Mileage

"See, in my line of work you got to keep repeating things over and over and over again for the truth to sink in, to kind of catapult the propaganda." - George W. Bush

Tell me, what does "No need to ride with strangers" mean to you?

In the context of Personal Rapid Transit, it is describing a fact of the service concept -- when transit service is on demand, a trip starts when you enter the station and select a destination, board a pod and go. People ahead of you are in their pods and don't have to wait for you, and your pod doesn't have to wait for others. Whether you know them or not is immaterial. If you're at your neighborhood station you might know the travelers in the other pods, but otherwise the odds are good that you won't. This is what it means.

To Ken Avidor it means something else: People don't like to ride with strangers.

Let's just tell it like it is. What Ken is doing here is trying to smear PRT with another Ick Factor (like PRT is dirty and PRT=Bachmann). He's implying PRT fans are people who don't care for other people, are trying to scare people away from transit, or trying to appeal to classists, ageists, racists, etc.

Ken 's little paraphrase would be fine if it just stopped there, but it wouldn't be our Ken if he stopped there. Ken takes People don't like to ride with strangers and attributes it to others.

It's gone from a paraphrase to a quote, those are quotation marks. The group Minnesota 350 is holding a sustainability event this Saturday, part of the worldwide Moving Planet day, and Citizens For PRT is participating.
Ken wants to try and shame MN 350 into disassociating itself from CPRT. Lookit what the bad PRT people say! says Ken. He even provides a photo, the Twitpic link. Only, that photo only proves he is the Great Misquoter:

What, he's hoping no one actually looks at it?

This would be a minor amusement, except for that Ken has been pulling this same trick for 8 years.
Apr. 23, 2003 in Pulse Of The Twin Cities:
[gives no reference.]

Jul. 13, 2004, at Car Free Cities: The biggest myth the PRT proponents spread around is that people don't like to ride with "strangers". [gives no reference. At this point he's just quoting one word though.]

Jan. 2005 at Light Rail Now: PRT proponents can say things that the highway boosters could never say, such as "people don't like to ride with strangers". [gives no reference. Now the quote is a whole phrase.]

Apr. 17, 2005 at Mobjectivist: When Councilman Dean Zimmermann testified for Mark Olson's PRT bill (HF1174) in the Minnesota House Local Government Committee March 9th 2005, he said "With PRT you don't have to ride with strangers." This is the audio link:
http://www.house.leg.state.mn.us/audio/ls84/locpol03092005.asx [This should be definitive, right? I mean, it's audio! Except Ken gets wrong both the quote and the context. At 3:15:20, what Zimmerman really says is:
"You have the same relationship with this sky cab that you would to an ordinary taxi cab, in that you get in it, you ride it with yourself or your family, you're not riding with strangers. And when you get to your destination you don't look back and say 'now what am I going to do with that big hunk of steel?' You just leave it there, and it's available, sitting in the station, ready for the next person to jump in and go."
He's only describing how PRT is like a taxi.]

Jun. 2, 2005 at Transportation Geek: What they will "market" will be more websites with flashy computer graphics and more brochures with anti-transit propaganda saying stuff like "People don''t [sic] like to ride with strangers". [link to image of flyer with quote that doesn't match]

Jun. 6, 2005 at MAP-NP Community Forum: Dean Zimmermann has testified at the Minnesota State Legislature in favor of Rep. Mark Olson''s anti-transit PRT bills saying that "people don''t [sic] like to ride with strangers". [gives no reference, note same typo as Jun. 2, 2005]

Jun. 14, 2005 at PRT Skeptic: Dean has even teamed up with right-wing Republican Mark Olson at the Capitol and Minneapolis City Hall to say wonderful things about the Taxi 2000 Corporation and spread nasty disinformation about buses and trains such as "People don't like to ride with strangers". [gives no reference]

Jul. 25, 2005 at PRT Skeptic: What do you expect from people who are fond of saying "People don't like to ride with strangers."? [gives no reference]

Aug. 22, 2005 at Seattle P-I (and republished elsewhere): PRT proponents can say things that the highway boosters could never say, such as "People don't like to ride with strangers." [gives no reference]

Jan. 25, 2006 at Detroit Metro Times: PRT proponents can say things that the highway boosters could never say, such as "People don't like to ride with strangers." [gives no reference]

Feb. 7, 2006 at Wikipedia: PRT proponents can say things that the highway boosters could never say, such as "People don't like to ride with strangers." [he was unable to document it, tried to use the Jun. 2, 2005 link]

Apr. 11, 2006 at PRT Skeptic: What do you expect from people who are fond of saying "People don't like to ride with strangers."? [gives no reference]

Jan. 12, 2010 at Democratic Underground: The pod people are always saying PRT is better that reality-based transit because "you don't have to ride with strangers". [includes image with non-matching quote]

And now it's back!
May 20, 2011 at PRT Moondoggie: the PRT hucksters aint [sic] going to give up the fear-mongering about "strangers" on buses and trains

Ken Avidor: the Great Catapulter. How many more miles can he get out of this sleight of hand?

Also: The reality is that PRT ride-sharing is happening

UPDATE: This Avidor  post shows how if someone thinks PRT is about not riding with strangers, it's because Ken gave them the idea.

Archives: Ken's opinions about teenagers and Poland


Super mileage: