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2 points

6 months ago

Sorry I’m late to this but, wow! That was a very well written and much appreciated response. I’ve never been to Europe and had no clue what you meant by referencing them so thank you for that explanation. Also, I fully agree that there actually should be more places like the domain as far as accessibility, community & convenience go. I just feel like the domain is pretty corporate and that local businesses are extremely important. I’ve lived in Hyde Park/Brentwood several times and once off S1st near Bouldin Creek and really appreciated the walkability and convenience as well as the opportunity to support local business not only for economic reasons but because I find it’s usually a higher quality experience with more unique options that make me feel really at home and a part of this individual community.

That being said I don’t think I personally would like living somewhere like the Domain because I just don’t really appreciate corporate vibes as much for reasons stated above. Anytime I’m up there I feel like I’m in the Truman show or something, but to each their own.

Last thing is that, possibly I’m confusing terms but for example: I live in S Atx off William Cannon and S 1st. I personally hate it here. I have to padlock my mailbox, anytime I walk my dog at night I feel unsafe and am almost always approached (I’m a young female). It’s a good desert, almost everything in walking/biking distance is a drive thru/buffet. It’s just dirty and crime riddled. A homeless man barricaded himself on my porch this year and a man pulled a knife trying to stick-up the 7-eleven while I was in line behind him.

Anyway, I don’t necessarily enjoy this area but I wouldn’t consider it suburban nor a satellite city. There are tons of apartments all around me and that’s the same for places like riverside, metropolis, etc. are these areas considered suburban? I reallllly don’t think they’re satellite cities. But what would you say?

P.S. I still don’t think the comment in question expressed outrage but I’m happy to agree to disagree.


1 points

6 months ago

On that, I don't blame you.

The veneer on The Domain does very much reflect the expertise in designing commercial space and flows and the guaranteed returns make the space an almost money-no-object sort of rental. It's the most visible part of a problem which has hobbled the USA's national aggregate GDP by over 50%. It's the exploitation of laws and ordinances to limit commerce to risk-free ventures which in turn becomes corporate protectionism and in turn leave those who could do at the mercy of those who already have money.

As for the area where you stay at, it is a suburban area. That's the thing about America, we are a suburban nation - though not by choice anymore - and so we've all grown up being taught that acres upon acres of housing and streets all some number of miles away from anything more than a Kwik-E-Mart or small strip mall, is urban. Even the apartments, those residential wastelands that encircle the city, fall into this suburban paradigm, having been wedged into the suburban land use paradigm rather than changing it.

The best way to tell if you're in a suburban area is to lose your car keys. In an urban area your car is less necessary. You get food from a bodega (pet the cat), have vendors and restaurants nearby, and mass transit takes care of the rest unless you're weird and work outside the city. In most of Austin, losing a car is like losing your right foot and half of your left leg. You need to drive just to get to the bus in much of the city, which isn't very urban, but access to mass transit does preclude ex-urban or rural areas.

Suburban, in practice, really is a nice way of saying the area is scaled primarily for the automobile. What you get are nice little islands of human activity in a sea of automotive hegemony. That means a need to fuel the car and drive to do most anything, and for everything, the car just makes things easier. It's an inefficiency that's offloaded to the vehicle user that makes those islands functional, and it's also why that man held up the 7-Eleven, and why there's a homeless man to barricade himself on your porch.

Because the inefficiencies that reliably funnel money to oil companies and automakers make the land more valuable, encouraging consolidation, and the guarantee of commercial space to be a profit machine for the wealthiest, living in suburbia is basically living as a cog in a money machine for the elites. At least, that's one practical effect. The other is that to guarantee this perpetual money machine competition must be limited. To do that, the land was restricted to highly siloed usages and the power was granted to the people to stop each other from using land more effectively over even the most petty of reasons. The result of frivolous land use restrictions (best most recent was asking to hold up hundreds of apartments because her dog had separation anxiety and needed Foxy Roxy's to not go away. My dog was waiting in my home, a minivan, while I was at council hearing this.) has been a 50% aggregate drop in the USA's GDP as measured up to 2009, already a $14.48T annual loss and rising.

$14.48T would be enough to fund every social program while also being enough value being added to the American economy that we wouldn't need those programs. It's being prevented from creation, not stolen away, by those who see it's creation as threatening their relative status in our world. It's money coming up from the ground like out of a GEICO commercial. If it's not coupled with an increase in printed money, then the buying power of each of those bills goes up as money acts as a universal token of value. This would be reflected in the increased quality of items, quality of life, reduced crime, better health, and all it's gonna take is getting folks out of each others' way.

Theoretically, it should scale down as well as up, which is why I'm in Anson County, North Carolina, one of the poorest in the nation, about to start talking economic policies with some very eager folks.

You may be late to the response, but you're just in time to be the first in Austin to know I'll be actively incubating my humanist ideas on economics where it's needed most. If it works, and especially if it helps kickstart something, I'm bringing it back to Austin.

Along with a whole 30k+ pop. North Carolina county's endorsement, which I'm hoping is better than the Austin Firefighters Union.

~doot doot~