Linda Watson | Indy Week

Linda Watson 
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Re: “Your Party’s Dead, Man: Data Shows New N.C. Voters Abandoning Dems, GOP

182% of the new 26-40 voters registered as unaffiliated? That's 182 out of every 100? And 106% of the new Republican voters are 66+?

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Linda Watson on 05/27/2017 at 7:08 PM

Re: “Local Film Under Contract Highlights the Human Story Behind the Chicken in Your Biscuit

Thank you for covering how the brutality of industrial farming affects human farmers and their neighbors in this story and in "PIgs in Slop" (also in this issue). I'm sorry neither article mentioned the suffering of the animals in these hell holes, although the photo above of chickens stacked layer upon layer in tiny cages hints at the situation. Indy readers can stop supporting these and similar abuses to humans and animals by not buying meat, eggs, or dairy. I agree with grower Craig Watts, quoted above, that this affects all of us, but not because the beings he raises are food. The United Nations's report Livestock's Long Shadow found that more climate-change gases come from the livestock sector than from the transportation sector.…

4 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Linda Watson on 04/11/2017 at 3:04 PM

Re: “Wake County’s Mass Transit System Is a Mess. Can a $2.3 Billion Referendum Save It?

Alex, thanks for your thoughtful comments. It's a complicated topic. My thoughts on your points:

1) You have a good point about the total cost. When both types of rides, we should consider the cost for roads, stop lights, parking lots and garages, parking meters, vehicles, insurance, etc.

2) You're right that empty buses Manufacturing a car uses about 17 tonnes or 18 tons of carbon. Building the infrastructure mentioned above takes more. Maintaining a car takes even more (new tires, driving around just to find parking, get gas, get inspections, etc.). And finally there's the gas used in each trip.…

The more convenient and affordable the buses are, the more they will be fuller. In the article's example, a relatively empty bus that helped Crabtree workers get home after the mall closed would also mean fuller mid-day buses.

3) Our best experience was in Brno in the Czech Republic, which is comparable in size and density to Raleigh (populations 400K and 450K respectively). It's so much like Raleigh that it has a big Red Hat building! In the Triangle, we have the advantage of being able to connect to Chapel Hill and Durham.

It's a huge quality of life advantage to be able to travel without relying on a car, for residents and for visitors.

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Linda Watson on 10/06/2016 at 10:15 AM

Re: “Wake County’s Mass Transit System Is a Mess. Can a $2.3 Billion Referendum Save It?

I'm in another demographic group the transit planners hope to attract: families trying to get by with one car no matter what their income level. My truck was totaled in an accident 18 months ago. For almost a year I couldn't drive. The silver lining was lower costs and a smaller carbon footprint, so for now we are sticking with one car. Everyone is just an accident away from having to rely on others for transportation. The "accident" that is climate change should also encourage folks to have fewer vehicles and drive fewer miles.

I used to ride the bus from Five Points to downtown to work every day, but hadn't ridden it in years until this month. We'd spent nearly a month in Europe relying on public transportation which was clean, timely, and frequent. The experience inspired me to take the bus from west Raleigh to NCSU and downtown. Both rides were clean, timely, and air conditioned. Raleigh's recommended TransLoc Rider app let me see where the buses were on the line, so I didn't worry that I'd missed the bus. Maybe one car is all we need!

On the other hand, the buses come only every half hour and most of my drives take 20 minutes or less. If the buses came every 10 or 15 minutes, taking them would be come the first choice for anyone who wants to avoid traffic and parking hassles. We also need routes that don't rely on the hub system. I shouldn't have to go from west Raleigh to downtown before going to North Hills. It's a 10 minute drive and an hour bus trip each way. Let's at least have a Beltline loop.

The information crawler inside the bus mostly displayed the date and the route name. Sometimes it displayed key stops, but sometimes *after* the bus passed the stop being displayed. (This happened for route 4 at Ridgewood.) Most European buses and trams helpfully display the name or number of the next stop. This is especially useful for visitors and new riders.

The TransLoc Rider app is useful but intrusive. To make it work, you must turn on your phone's location services and allow the app to track your location *even when you are not using it.* TransLoc says that this will help with route planning, but that should be an option not a requirement. Most apps have the option to access your location only when you are using the app. To prevent constant tracking, I switch my phone settings before and after using the app.

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Linda Watson on 10/05/2016 at 6:32 PM

Re: “Your Participation is Mandatory: The INDY’s 2016 Primary Endorsements

Poll after poll shows that Bernie Sanders can win over any Republican candidate, while Clinton has a much less safe margin or loses outright. I'm so disappointed that your editor-in-chief "put his thumb on the scale" for your endorsement and more so that you perpetuate the myth of Clinton's electability. I'm a woman and a feminist who wants the candidate who will do the most good for everyone. That's Bernie Sanders by a landslide. See a collection of polls here:…

58 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Linda Watson on 03/04/2016 at 6:34 AM

Re: “Do You Miss the Public Option Yet?

Agreed. Single payer health insurance would not only dramatically cut administrative costs, it would save countless hours spent selecting a plan and then fighting to get claims paid. This time is a hidden tax on individuals and medical professionals. We should also reduce health care costs by promoting healthy living.

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Linda Watson on 02/20/2016 at 11:19 AM

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