Toronto columnist Terence Corcoran was almost Jonathan Swift with this obscene twist of logic:
When car drivers cruise....on Saturday night, their metabolisms are more or less flat-lined. They just sit there, burning up little energy personally but paying for the cost of their automobile's carbon footprint via taxes and fees. Bike riders grinding up the same route burn up a lot more carbohydrates, which their bodies convert into carbon dioxide and exhale, adding to their carbon footprint. The volumes are small, but it all adds up, and bicyclists don't pay.
But this is mixed in with some legitimate gripes about rude and thoughtless cyclists riding on the sidewalk and blowing stoplights and such, so even if it was satire, it's just not very good. I'd consider it a wasted opportunity, in fact, since that behavior is no worse than any driver with orders of magnitude less liability.
And does the world need another BikeSnob? A conservative, pudgy, non-cycling Canadian one with no sense of humor, at that?
So I will state this is probably real, and nothing if not trolling for a reaction. And he certainly got one from looking at the comments.
I'll say this: no matter how much C02 cyclists are emitting directly and indirectly - through increased calorie consumption - cars get taxed because they carry so much liability amid their surroundings and create so much wear on the surfaces intended to be driven on, not to mention real pollution. I'd bet this guy certainly wouldn't argue to have CO2 declared a pollutant in any other context besides heaping hostility on cyclists.
The amount of money saved on infrastructure maintenance by every "one-less-car" is certainly worth the cost of the so-called "free lunches" given to cyclists. Not too mention, we're the ones offsetting all the demand you sedentary fucks are putting on the healthcare system. You think your premiums are high? Thank us cyclists for keeping the risk down where it is!
Teammate and friend "Bryce" commented to me, "This is an odd and hostile twist on a common theme. There have been numerous op-eds in favor of taxing/licensing cyclists....that just because someone is on a bike that they must never use a car (or own property or pay sales tax) and are thus somehow freeloading."
And I don't own property or car. I guess that makes me some sort of communist. Bryce continues:
"Even if you pay rent in lieu of a mortgage (not a bad idea these days), you're subsidizing your landlord's property taxes and contributing to public infrastructure in a direct and measurable way. So no, you're definitely not a freeloader and yes, this guy can suck it. Anyway, it's never about who pays for what, with crap like this the subtext is always hostility towards cyclists."
There you have it. Terence Corcoran. What an asshole!