A Week of Qoutes some on urbanism

June 30, 2006 at 6:18 pm

“Since 2000, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has reported a general decrease in the number of new molecular entities-drugs with new chemical structures- submitted for apporval each year… Thirty-six years ago, pharameutical professionals also worried about drug discovery and lamented a decline in the rate at which new drugs were reaching the U.S. market.” Page 89 MIT Technology Review June 06.

All sciences are finite in theory, is it possible to reach the ends of chemistry or is the cost of research combined with a small gap in the paradigms driving companies to more conservative research?

“The big question now is wether Americans are willing to keep spending more than $80 billion a year of their tax money to maintain and upgrade the [interstate highway] system. Clifford Winston, at the Brookings Institution, has tried to measure the benefits reaped from improved logistics. Although this is clearly an imprecise exercise, he reckons that government-financed highway investments have run into steeply diminhsing returns since the 1980s.” Economist June 24th 2006 PG. 42

Will privatized highways in the U.S. lead to an increase in localism and urban centered living? So far only one toll road in Chicago is privately owned (Many Spanish companies run private roads all over the world)

“The Palestinian roads are often old and full of potholes, and there are checkpoints every twenty or thirty kilometers.” New York Review of Books June 22 PG 56

Maybe they should sell them to spain?  =)

“As the housing market has slowed, fewer people are buying property, choosing to rent instead. That has pushed up rents. In turn, owner’s equivalent rent has risen too, even though homeowners have seen no change in the actual costs of owning their house. Becuase owner’s equivalent rent is estimated net of utility prices, recent falls in gas and electricty bills have paradoxically made matters worse.”

Basically, rent a room in your house and make some money now.

“they were heavily subsidized and built on expropiated private and public land, housing prices there have traditionally been as much as a third cheaper than in the former Israeli-held West Jerusalem.”
New York Review of Books June 22 PG 56

Here is a good chance for Israel to reverse course and also engage in an experiment much needed, what are the benefits of heavily subsidizing urban living? How much would the Israelis need to spend to make moving out of the west bank a reasonable proposition for settlers there? How could they benefit from providing people with cheap inner-city housing? Most of the settlers already commute to Jerusalem for work anyway.

“The active sapienses consumed life, and the passive ones were consumed by it, and it was no easier to change your existential orientation than your sexual one…” Headcrusher Page 13

It’s so Russian yet so existential it’s almost hard to beleive. Next to this I scrawled, Why is this judemental bias so common? Part of what makes Headcrusher so interesting is this exact distyopian look on capitalism. The protoganist works for an investment bank that’s trying to “maximize his creative capital” etc. While as an American I would like to work for a business that seemed to be aware of the existence of such new agey management techniques, Headcrusher sees them as just another facade perhaps like Fight Club’s Ikea house.

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