Have you noticed how many ads there are on the TV showing cars driving through empty urban streets? From my daily experience in the urban environment, most people in cars spend most of their time moving from one slow queue of traffic to the next, cut off from the world around them. While I as a cyclist go sailing past, fully aware of my surroundings and able to engage with those who are not trapped in their own personal hell. People will insist on buying into this illusion of freedom – why else are people getting so upset about congestion charging?

As Lincoln put it, you can fool most of the people some of the time, some of the people most of the time, but not all of the people all of the time. So wake up people, cars do not offer you freedom, it is just vested interests selling you the illusion of freedom.

We need to invest in a range of transport solutions if we are to have true freedom, not just the tyranny of the car. Why is it that Britain has the worst traffic congestion in Europe? Why is it that Britain is the worst place in the developed world to be a child? It is because we buy the illusion of Freedom, rather than looking for the real thing. Switch off the TV, leave the car behind, get out under your own steam, see the world around you and find your freedom!

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