Archive for May 2nd, 2011

what i hate…..


Besides the start of Bike Walk Bus Week – with community wide incentives and events for those that choose to move around by any mode other than by car – here in Missoula, there are a few other updates that might be of interest to you, the good readers of 4&20.

Update 1:

As indicated by the graphic above, Missoula’s Transportation Planning office is hosting an Open House for citizens to learn about and comment on the 2011 Active Transportation Plan (MATP). The open house will be held on Wednesday, May 4th from 5-7pm in the Missoula Public Library’s large meeting room in the lower floor.

The 2011 Active Transportation Plan takes a comprehensive look at Missoula’s active transportation system: sidewalks, bike lanes, trails, what works, what doesn’t, what needs to be improved and what can help make Missoula an even more livable community. Over the course of a year the plan has been developed with the help of substantial community input and is currently being reviewed by the Planning Board for approval.

Update 2:

Volunteers needed! As part of the MATP planning process a continuing set of bike and pedestrian counts will occur twice each year. The counts are conducted with the help of volunteers… that means you. On Tuesday, May 10th from 4-6pm and again on Saturday, May 14th from 11:30am – 2:30pm counts will be conducted throughout Missoula. The data will be used as a performance measure to analyze how bike/ped improvements affect things like overall safety and the number of people using active transportation as well as identifying where future improvements should potentially be located.

If you would like to volunteer, please contact Mirtha Becerra with the Transportation Planning office @ or 406-258-4989.


Chris Hedges weighed in today with some sobering commentary about bin Laden’s death:

“We responded exactly as these terrorist organizations wanted us to respond. They wanted us to speak the language of violence. What were the explosions that hit the World Trade Center, huge explosions and death above a city skyline? It was straight out of Hollywood. When Robert McNamara in 1965 began the massive bombing campaign of North Vietnam, he did it because he said he wanted to “send a message” to the North Vietnamese—a message that left hundreds of thousands of civilians dead.

These groups learned to speak the language we taught them. And our response was to speak in kind. The language of violence, the language of occupation—the occupation of the Middle East, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan—has been the best recruiting tool al-Qaida has been handed. If it is correct that Osama bin Laden is dead, then it will spiral upwards with acts of suicidal vengeance. And I expect most probably on American soil. The tragedy of the Middle East is one where we proved incapable of communicating in any other language than the brute and brutal force of empire.

And empire finally, as Thucydides understood, is a disease. As Thucydides wrote, the tyranny that the Athenian empire imposed on others it finally imposed on itself. The disease of empire, according to Thucydides, would finally kill Athenian democracy. And the disease of empire, the disease of nationalism … these of course are mirrored in the anarchic violence of these groups, but one that locks us in a kind of frightening death spiral. So while I certainly fear al-Qaida, I know it’s intentions. I know how it works. I spent months of my life reconstructing every step Mohamed Atta took. While I don’t in any way minimize their danger, I despair. I despair that we as a country, as Nietzsche understood, have become a monster that we are attempting to fight.”

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