Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Global warning

You might as well know, if you don't already, that the American SUV craze has hit Europe.

In London, SUVs are known as "Chelsea tractors." (Chelsea is a posh inner city neighborhood.) Some London city councilors are calling for a double congestion charge on every SUV entering the city.

In Paris, the city council has passed a resolution that would have 4x4s banned from the city during peak pollution periods and their owners denied parking permits.

The majority of the big gas guzzlers are bought for city driving. "You get a bit of respect when you drive one," one SUV owner is quoted in the Irish Times. "People get out of your way just that little bit quicker," says another.

Europeans may not approve of American muscle flexing in Iraq, but they seem eager to follow our Texas swagger on the roadway.