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The Duke of Wellington on “Mobility Apartheid”

April 17th, 2011 · No Comments · Politics

wellington.pngMost of my friends have patiently endured through my ongoing diatribes where I express dissent with the local politicians and misc. authoritarians who cheerfully embrace fees, taxes, and polices that all conspire to force the less financially fortunate from their cars. “Mobility Apartheid” has been my catch-phrase in these dialogs.

I didn’t realize how the Duke of Wellington aligned with the thoughts of local politicos until today. This from Harvard Design Magazine here.:

“In Great Britain, for instance, no less a personage than the Duke of Wellington, the victor over Napoleon at Waterloo, thought it a mistake to build railroads because they would ‘only encourage the common people to move about needlessly.’

Sounds a lot to me like this from the Seattle Times:

“In a letter released this morning, the Federal Highway Administration told the state Department of Transportation that both bridges could be tolled…Tolls would rise and fall based on congestion or the time of day, with the goals of encouraging transit and reducing unnecessary trips.”


“The paradigm has to shift at some point,” said Bryan Stevens, spokesman for the Department of Planning and Development. ‘People will change their patterns as it becomes more difficult to drive and park. Then there’s a tipping point as transportation becomes easier to (access).'”

I find the following description of Wellington germane. This passage from the PBS special Napoleon at War describes him: “Tall, aristocratic, rather arrogant, disdainful, not an enormous amount of imagination, but totally unflinching…”


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