That'll teach ya to buy a car that uses so few resources a bunch of drunk guys can flip it.
Despite the fact that Google has usurped the city's bus system and tech billionaires want to turn the Bay Area into a lawless city-state where they can be free of oversight on human/technology experimentation, someone in San Francisco has decided that the people to be angry at are smart car owners (the brand is spelled with lowercase letters). Yes, smart car owners. The people who already get silently laughed at everywhere they go, even though they ease congestion and consume less gas in their whimsical little Playskool vehicles. They, for some reason, are the targets of a recent spate of late-night incidents where smart cars were tipped onto their sides, hoods, roofs and rears.
According to an eyewitness, at least one of the incidents (and probably all of them) were the work of five or six guys in hoodies, which is the most generic description of a crime anywhere in America.
If flipping automobiles was intended as an anti-tech statement, I hope no one ever tells
these people about cell phones, computers, fax machines, or televisions.
Yes, the cars are fun to ridicule, but at $13,000 they're both too cheap to be driven by a worthy vandalism target (not that I'm saying the tech overlords of Silicon Valley deserve to have their cars flipped) and way too expensive to be considered a harmless prank. That didn't stop Total Frat Move from applauding this as a terrific idea (ostensibly because smart cars are unsafe; we all know about TFM's fierce advocacy for consumer safety). Even worse for San Franciscans, this is not on the cutting edge at all: Toronto has had smart car flipping problems since at least 2009.
So, what deep social lesson can we glean from this unsettling new trend? People are bored, and any car that can be flipped by a handful of drunk guys will be, especially if that car is taunting them by calling itself smart.
(by Johnny McNulty)