If we just pass enough laws, we can make a perfect world

NYC Council orders dual flushing mechanisms for toilets, one for caca, the other for pee. You want to save water? Install water meters. This sort of insanity is going to kill New York – slowly but surely.

A study by the non-profit Urban Green Council estimates that simply by changing some of these commonly used fixtures could knock that down by 5-7 gallons per person, per day. More efficient cooling systems could potentially save between 150,000 and 200,000 gallons per year, it found. And changing water fountains would also encourage the use of reusable water containers, thus saving the city millions in the cost of recycling plastic bottles, the study said.

Council Minority Leader James Oddo (R-Mid-Island), who voted against the water fountain and “toilet” bill, along with colleague Vincent Ignizio (R-South Shore), said some of the measures reach too far.

“When does it stop? Does it stop when we micromanage every minute facet of our lives? I want people to drink water as much as the next guy, but to make it part of a law so that someone does not have to tilt a water container to fill it up?” Oddo said.


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10 responses to “If we just pass enough laws, we can make a perfect world

  1. fredo

    big corporations dont pay taxes in ny. only the little guy

  2. towny

    Fuckin govt! They are in our kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms, cars, where we walk, how we talk, thre is almost nothing the govt dosent have its fat fingers into.

  3. Peg

    I love these automatic toilets. Used a few on my most recent trip to FLA…. one of ’em flushed at least 4 times in 1 minute. Doncha love progress? And yes, government mandating how we pee and flush and drink and God knows what else?

  4. rom the Town Website http://www.GreenwichCt.org on Oct 14, 2010:

    Proposed Zoning Changes:

    Modify Sec. 6-5(a)(22.1) Floor Area, Gross Sub-Paragraph (B)2. Where the finished surface of the floor above the basement is less than three (3) feet above the grade plane and at all points the floor of the basement is more than four (4) feet below the [grade plane] finished grade, (defined as the point where the finished grade intersects the wall of the building.) the basement shall not be included within Gross Floor Area. See Diagram No. 3.

    Published Statement:

    Purpose: Because of shortcomings in the application of the present regulations as pertains to when a basement area qualifies for a complete exclusion from the calculation of gross floor area on properties subject to exceptional grade changes, the Zoning Enforcement Officer is recommending wording changes in the definition of “Floor Area Gross”
    The change in the above referenced section also requires revision to Diagram No. 3 [not provided.]

    Comment from one who observed the hearing on Oct 12, 2010:

    Greenwich has not had the services of a Zoning Enforcement Officer for about eight months. The prior “acting” ZEO was not offered the position, in part due to complaints. Therefore, it is unclear who is “recommending” the change.

    However, the explanations offered by the Commission in public hearing clarified that the intent is to add an additional test of when “FAR in the basement” counts for total allowed.

    Test #1 (existing) is the grade plane geometric average of adjacent land grades in relation to weighted floor elevation of the main level.

    Test #2 is whether in the case of Test #1 failing for inclusion of basement area, if any point along the perimeter of the basement floor has less than a 48 inch difference to the adjacent grade outside, then the full basement becomes included in the total floor area allowed on site. This would force exclusion of basement parking from the present scheme, and would penalize homes with outside access to the basement though garage doors or outside stairs.

    When questioned as to the reason for this, the commissioners made clear that they wanted to remove the “living space” potential from these areas. So they revealed that this is really a use issue. They dismissed the fire and safety aspect of egress to the exterior with, “Let them climb out a window.” They did not offer a means of access to replace large mechanical equipment like boilers.

    While the “police” powers of the state are partly vested in the zoning enforcement process, the power to disrupt legal “living” activities based on where they occur in the home seems bizarre.

    Once again, the “architects” of zoning have focus their attention inward on structures, rather than seeing the larger issues of neighborhood and public safety protection.

  5. Cobra

    The artwork accompanying this thread may suggest the anticipated condition of facilities at the DNC on Nov. 3.

  6. Daniel

    The United States needs a “Leave Me Alone” party. Government is out of control.

  7. Chuck D

    Having used these dual flushers in Europe for years, they don’t cost anything, don’t require a phd to use and are what we in the real business world call low hanging fruit. Just like escalators that go to sleep when no one is around and wake up on the first step. I like this blog and many of the comments are interesting for the alternative perspectives, but rather than constant ‘just say no’ knee jerk reactions to every suggestion that means doing something differently, try looking at the upside. Maybe we can even produce them in the USA.

    • Chuck, I’m still living with the “low flush” toilets. Don’t get me going (so to speak). : )
      Just for the record, I use one of those low-flow showerheads and have done so for years. Unlike some of the toilets, the showerheads work swell.

  8. Chuck D

    toilets work like a charm as long as you push the little button for little work, and big button for big work. But to give an example where we keep shortchanging ourselves here, the latest bathroom hand dryer innovation is some cheap knock off of the original and amazing Dyson hand dryer (same guy as the vacuum cleaners) installed in airports giving the impression that all such hand dryers suck (or blow?). we’ll shoot right past consigning our futures from second rate to 3rd rate if as a nation we don’t wake back up to accepting and driving innovation