You know, if the auto manufacturers would wise up, they could make vehicles that would not only be more economical, they could cost less to buy and be easier on the environment.
Suppose, just suppose, that it were to become illegal to have A/Cs, heaters, radios and in short, any type of comfort in a car. Like the 1936 Chevy, for example. No automatic transmission, no radio, I think it did have a heater, but no A/C. Didn't have turn signals, Hand signals worked just fine. No power windows or locks, no power steering or brakes. All that stuff wastes fuel and causes people to drive more, putting out more greenhouse gases.
Cars are made to get from point A to point B in a reasonable amount of time. Stick shift only, that would eliminate most of the teenaged girls driving around in daddy's car. 4 cylinders maximum. Allow only one vehicle per family unless they could show an actual need to have two. No one under age 21 would be allowed to drive. No motor vehicles on the streets between 11 PM and 6 AM except for long-haul trucks and emergency vehicles. Fix all the cars so they will not go over 50 MPH
Another thing that would help... Outlaw all types of auto racing. All it does is get people killed. What was his name, Dale Earnhardt, would still be alive today if not for that. Motor scooters would be OK, but not high-performance motorcycles. Then they could start looking at all the distractions.. Make it illegal to do anything else but drive. They say cell phones cause accidents, even if you have a hands free setup. Then make it illegal to be talking to your passengers while you drive. No eating, drinking, smoking, talking or anything else while you drive. The cars could be made with a separate compartment for the driver, so they couldn't be distracting him. Make the driver have to stop the car in order to open or close the windows, turn on the wipers or anything else. Do all these things, and the pollution will decrease, accidents will decrease, demand for fuel will come down and so will the prices. That's for gas and oil and for cars too. Go ahead and flame me, but if you think about it, that's the way.
I'm gonna say that the founding fathers would spin in their graves at the speed of light if this ever happened. In theory it's not a bad idea, but history has shown that anytime the gov tries to "fix" something, the result is usually the problem getting worse. Take a look at poverty rates over the past 60 years or so. . . sharp decline until welfare, then it stagnated and hasn't budged since.
When gas hits $15/gallon due to peak oil, your idea might come true all by itself anyways, without causing a civil war. Imagine telling all those Texans they where required by law to give up their pickups. . .yeah, not gonna happen.
However, I would like to see federal safety regs go away completely, and maybe maintain a federal safety rating department. I think a lot of people would drive a super lightweight 150 mpg car with no power locks/steering/windows etc, if one was available, but safety (and emissions) regs have precluded that from ever happening. I think if I want to drive an efficient car that won't protect me as well in an accident, the gov shouldn't tell the automakers they can't make one.
you bring up a few good points, but fail to consider some things:
economics, civil liberties, and gov't power are a few to be sure.
no worries however, there are MANY tree huggers here that have not the slightest clue about how delicate the world economy is. they go on pushing their green or liberal agenda w/out any concern for mankind.
lol! Old coot indeed. You really oughta run for political office. Would go over real well. I think the best one you suggested was stopping the car in order to turn on and off the wipers. That would make the roads a lot safer. Just imagine the pandemonium when a sudden thunderstorm blows up.....
Actually what they're trying to do is make it too expensive to drive. Then everyone will use public transportation. You get up at 5 AM, stand at the bus stop in the rain to catch the bus at 6, change buses and ride, stopping at every corner, so you can get to work at 8. At 5 PM, just reverse the process so you can make it home by 7.