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The joys of riding on Korean subways

I guess I kind of expect it on subway line #1 or #2 but on subway line #9 – that’s the gold line. Gold not only because of its color but because of the affluent sections of Seoul that it serves. Apparently this young lady is special and feels that the seats reserved for the elderly are hers as well. She obviously believes she is sophisticated (pink boots and sunglasses in December – where is Metropolitan when we need him? – just joking Mike) and apparently has a commanding grasp of English swear words. 

Apologies – Korean text but there is a nice little video of her. Why do they pixilate her face in the picture but not in the video?)

  • hardyandtiny

    Ooof!

  • hamel

    Apparently this young lady is special and feels that the seats reserved for the elderly are hers as well.

    The Youtube video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iTzvsM_32so) says that the woman is pregnant, Robert, in which case she was within her rights to sit where she did, but not to react in such a boorish way.

  • Seth Gecko

    She should have said, “see these rocks?!”

  • http://internationalcatladyofmystery.blogspot.com InternationalCatLady

    Oh line 9 – where the wealthier subway riders go to behave badly. Some creep felt me up during rush hour last week between National Assembly and Dangsan :/

  • robert neff

    I missed that. But I still think she is a class act.

  • jd

    Every time I see a video of someone losing it on the subway I always tell myself, “There but for the grace of god, go I.”

  • hamel

    Robert Neff: clearly. This year, I have seen a few of these types of videos, and one part of me wants to bring the worst offenders together in one, no-holds-barred carriage match (instead of a cage match).

    On the other hand, there may be more here than meets the eye. My wife and I watched it again tonight, and my wife’s reaction was in line with my own earlier today – the woman is mentally unbalanced. Look at the amount of bags she has, the fact that she is taking up 2 seats on the subway, her sunglasses on a subway and the way she shouted and screeched her hateful epithets (괴물 같은 년). Of course, it is not a watertight, psychiatrist approved diagnosis, but it Occam’s razor would suggest that this woman is not of sound mind. Now if that is true, then the pregnancy thing may not be real either. She might be suffering a “phantom pregnancy” or she might have made the whole thing up.

    Either way, I hope she gets the help she needs.

  • http://adamsawry.wordpress.com Adams-awry

    Hamel, you’re dead right when you say there may be more here than meets the eye. I just have a problem with your conjecture thereafter.

    I once lost the plot in a big way on a bus in Seoul. I am of sound mind, but three torrid days of personal problems had driven my stress levels to the point where I found it much easier to unload on some rude bastard (with hateful epithets, no less!) whose incivility I would normally have brushed off as just one of those things you come across in a big city.

    I don’t believe I was caught on film, and I certainly didn’t make the national press. Had I become a national hate figure, however, I’m sure the denizens of this hole (pun intended) wouldn’t have thought twice before declaring me absolute scum, deportation material, and/or mentally unbalanced.

    What’s more, I was wearing a winter coat and a pair of shorts. I had good reason for that, too. But you armchair psychiatrists would likelyhave pointed to such images as indubitable evidence of my madness.

    In short, you know very little of that woman’s circumstances and would do much better not to cast baseless aspersions on her state of mind.

    [Public enough for you?]

  • hamel

    Adams-awry, yeah that’s a pretty good attempt.

    And it is possibly that she wore the shades because she had a case of pinkeye, and she had so many bags because she was taking a lot of clothes to an orphanage, and she needed that seat next to her for her bags because she was suffering from a calcified shoulder joint and didn’t want anybody sitting close enough to touch that side of her, and her dad really is a prosecutor, and she blew up at the guy and the woman because the hormones of her pregnancy pushed her to a level she wouldn’t normally get to.

    All this is possible.

    It is also possible that she was suffering some form of disorder. If she is, I hope that she gets help, because Korea is a tough place to be mentally ill in, for a number of reasons. And maybe somehow this video will lead to some good coming out of it. Let’s hope so. Alternatively, it could lead to much worse. Let’s hope not.

  • Mrs. Choi

    The granny seems pretty awesome. I love how she doesn’t get flustered and just chuckles after crazy chick screams.

  • http://f5waeg.blogspot.com/ F5Waeg

    so many kinds of wrong

  • http://adamsawry.wordpress.com Adams-awry

    hamel, come to think of it, you’re probably right.

  • YangachiBastardo

    Honestly i thought the video was kinda hilarious yeah the ajumma was great, i love older Korean ladies, they have a heart of platinum under their rough skin

  • CactusMcHarris

    #8,

    Winter coats and shorts are part of a diagnosis for psychosis – everyone knows that. Seriously, I’m glad that you are well enough to write here of your experience – that’s some evidence of a personal nature which we don’t see here every day.

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    Winter coats and shorts are part of a diagnosis for psychosis – everyone knows that.

    Especially when you combine them with slippers and helicopter rotors on your hat.

  • http://dok.do/4lur41 Apodyopsis Gymnophoria

    These things never happened in Korea 8~10 years ago.

    Young people were actually polite and respectful to parents, teachers and older people back then.

    Korea is truly becoming worse and worse – I don’t want to be here in a few years time.

  • red sparrow

    Bullsh*t. It is a simple fact that not everyone had bitchin’ cell phones with high-res video eight-10 years ago.

    And I hope the diagnosis that wearing sunglasses on a subway as a sign mental illness is inaccurate because if not, I am stark raving mad.

  • http://dok.do/4lur41 Apodyopsis Gymnophoria

    It is accurate.

  • hamel

    Hi. Perhaps I should have been more explicit:

    any one of these indications taken alone means very little. It is the conglomeration of several of these together with the extreme behavior/speech exhibited (this woman didn’t simply unload and then retreat – she engaged vociferously for several minutes) that to me are a sign that at least she might be temporarily unbalanced, perhaps due to a period of high-stress or some pre-existing disorder.

    This is not to say that everyone who wears sunglasses indoors is psycho, nor that a person with a lot of bags is to be suspected. But I think a savvy subway commuter knows how to recognize people who may be ill at ease with the world. It is all the signs taken together.

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    I don’t know if there there are more of those subway and bus altercations compared to a decade ago, but one thing I have not seen in public this time around is Korean guys pushing or abusing women.

  • 깊은 구멍 속에

    She claims in the video several times that she is pregnant. And based on her pronunciation I would say that she is of the Kyopo variety. Not that any of this excuses of justifies her behavior, but it’s worth taking into consideration when analyzing whether or not she had the right to actually sit in the seat and whether or not she grew up in a cultural context that would fully allow her to grasp the weight of speaking to an elderly person like that.

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    Obviously, pregnant women should be required to carry around a Pregnancy form signed by their main doctors. It could be a “P-2″ or “P-6″ or whatever, based on the number of months. In the case of too many pregnant women need seats then priority would be given based on seniority (number of months pregnant).

    A backup plan would be to reserve a separate subway car for pregnant women, conveniently located near elevators.

  • wiessej

    Anyone ever just think this young woman is a rude, disrespectful bitch? That’s where my vote goes.

  • robert neff

    I tend to agree with wiessej on this one.

    I think the use of the term mentally ill has become too casual – a lame attempt to explain away bad behavior. It is the equivalent of “I was drunk so I should not be held accountable”.

    깊은 – obviously I am not Korean and so the excuse that she might be a kyopo and does not understand the gravity of her language to the elderly people really does not fly with me. If my father heard me speak like that to an elderly person – or to anyone else – he would have cleaned that subway with my limp body. The only area of doubt is what happened prior to the filming of this video. My knee-jerk reaction is this woman believes that she is better than her peers and does not feel they warrant her respect. Unfortunately this is not an isolated incident nor is it unique only to Korea.

  • http://rjkoehler.com Robert Koehler

    She claims in the video several times that she is pregnant. And based on her pronunciation I would say that she is of the Kyopo variety.

    That would also explain why she called granddad a “fucking asshole” (or so says a netizen):

    http://news.sportsseoul.com/read/life/990885.htm

    Just lovely…

  • cm

    Korean on Korean conflict in subway, only 25 comments.

    Korean on Black conflict in subway, 200+ comments.

  • Pingback: Speaking of people behaving badly on the subway

  • http://rjkoehler.com Robert Koehler

    cm: Depends on how we define this — it appears to be a 검은 머리 외국인 on Korean conflict in subway in this case.

  • hamel

    Neff: are you calling me lame?

    NayaCasey: good to see you embodying Poe’s Law again. To anyone not in the know, Casey is a Libertarian ideolog, so he is clearly NOT in favor of government intervention of who gets to sit where on public transport. If a privately owned railway company were to establish such rules, however, he would be fine with it.

    cm: what exactly is your point?

  • http://dok.do/4lur41 Apodyopsis Gymnophoria

    The fact that 50% of subway passengers are the elderly – riding for free – is annoying, especially during “rush hour” when the carriages are so crowded.

    I agree the elderly are entitles to their own little seats and leg room, but since they are travelling for free everyday, I think they should only be allowed to travel OFF-peak hours, the Korean lady (claiming to be pregnant) although she seems like a bitch, probably agrees – as she paid for her ticket.

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    apparently the woman’s language would qualify her to comment here in some of the smackdowns…

    I only wish the woman would have added, “Yeah, you suckers, you’re all gonna be paying for childcare and lunch for this kid in a few years! How you like me now?”

  • http://rjkoehler.com Robert Koehler

    I only wish the woman would have added, “Yeah, you suckers, you’re all gonna be paying for childcare and lunch for this kid in a few years! How you like me now?”

    Well, as that woman with 15 kids in Florida said, somebody needs to be held accountable. Somebody needs to pay.

  • hamel

    [trembling with anticipation] And who do you think that ought to be, Mr. Koehler, given that she seems incapable and/or unwilling to do it?

  • http://rjkoehler.com Robert Koehler

    Well, Hamel, I don’t know. But since you ask, what would YOU do?

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    AG #29–
    50%? Wow. But is it true?

    Definitely the free rides for seasoned Seoulites is costly. According to a recent Korea Times article, the nation’s subway operators are 1.6 trillion won ($1.45 billion) in the hole last the few years due to the free rides.

    According to the same article, in Seoul, about 13 percent of subway riders are senior citizens (31 percent in Gwangju). When the program was first introduced in the early 1980s, people over 65 took up only 3.9 percent of the population, but they accounted for 10.7 percent in 2010. Numbers are forecast to reach 15.1 percent in 2020.

    But it was such a good idea! I am confused how it could get to the point of costing so much money. I suppose in 30 years that some people will be saying similar things about the universal free lunch and childcare programs.
    http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/include/print.asp?newsIdx=99421

  • cm

    I’ve watched the video once. Maybe she is, or maybe she isn’t but I don’t see any evidence that inconclusively proves she’s a Gyopo. Maybe her shrill screaming is masking the accent which I’m not hearing, but she sounds pretty fluent to me. Any Korean can swear in English – that doesn’t mean anything. Lots of young Koreans who pick them up overseas while studying or through the media.

  • http://dok.do/4lur41 Apodyopsis Gymnophoria

    NC #34

    I wrote 50% because I don’t have time to do the research.
    Thanks for doing the research (13%) for me!

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    According to a recent Korea Times article, the nation’s subway operators are 1.6 trillion won ($1.45 billion) in the hole last the few years due to the free rides.

    They’re in the hole because they’re letting old people on for free? How does that work?

    I am confused how it could get to the point of costing so much money.

    So am I. Please explain it.

    I’ve got a solution, nayCasey. Let’s make all these old coots who lived through the Korean war and spent most of their lives in horrible penury pay for their own bus and train rides, or walk. I don’t care how frail they are, or whether they have arthritis, cancer, poor eyesight etc. I’m not interested in the fact that they receive the lowest pension in the OECD. I don’t give a hoot whether they have to sell cardboard from dumps so they can buy a bowl of watery soup for dinner. I couldn’t care less whether the free rides give them a modicum of comfort in their old age.

    The most important thing is that young libertarian expats don’t have to fess up a few extra bucks from their paychecks each month.

  • 깊은 구멍 속에

    cm – She’s good at Korean, no doubt, but she’s there’s definitely something not quite Korean about her pronunciation. Agree to disagree if you’d like, but I’d wager money she’s spent more than 10 years overseas.

    neff – Just because your father would do that doesn’t mean this isn’t common place in America. You should google videos of the DC Metro or Oakland buses to see how friendly people are with each other in America when they feel they’ve been slighted. My grandmother taught me that all human beings deserve respect, regardless of age, until they’ve proven otherwise. If some gentleman in his late 50s came and started harassing my pregnant wife for sitting, I can tell you how accommodating I would be to him and his advanced age.

    Speaking of advanced age, I provide a classic from American public transit:

    http://vimeo.com/9609349

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    A.G. #36, certainly!

    hoju #37,

    1) I’m in favor of these giveaways, I’m even trying to be helpful these days in encouraging our political powers-that-be to propose even more universal “freesomethings.” I will be a senior citizen soon, so I’ll be taking advantage of as many freebies as possible. I’d even like to have my own assigned free subway seat so no pregnant chicks will try to take my seat or they will have to get up whenever I show up.

    2) Thanks for the question and commentary about the cost, according to the article I linked:

    According to the Ministry of Public Administration and Security, Wednesday, the amount of fares exempted for senior citizens at seven subway operators in Seoul and other metropolitan cities reached 343 billion won in 2010, compared with 337.3 billion won in 2009.

    The lost revenue at Seoul Metro, the operator of the subway line Nos. 1-4, reached 139 billion won, while Seat’oul Metropolitan Rapid Transit, which manages the subway line Nos. 5-8, suffered an 84 billion won loss.

    In 2010, Seoul Metro recorded 257 billion won in the red, followed by 222 billion won at Seoul Metropolitan Rapid Transit.

    As is often quoted on Capitol Hill, “A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you’re talking real money.”

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    Ah, it’s “lost” revenue. But this assumes all these old folk would use the subways with the same frequency if they had to pay. Which, of course, is absurd.

    My guess is that a good number of them would be too poor, or would budget to buy food or other necessities instead. At a conservative estimate, I’d say half that figure would be a better indicator.

    As is often quoted on Capitol Hill, “A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you’re talking real money.”

    Capitol Hill isn’t in Korea, and really ought not to be dispersing economic wisdom anyway. Besides, they were probably talking about bank bailouts.

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    *dispensing* economic wisdom

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    hoju #40, the Congressman who is credited with the “billion here, billion there” quotation died in 1969, I guess that was a few weeks before Bush, Obama and the spendaholics in Congress went on their spending spree, so I can see how you might have thought they were talking about bank bailouts.

    Capitol Hill isn’t in Korea, and really ought not to be dispersing economic wisdom anyway. Besides, they were probably talking about bank bailouts.

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    Fair enough, but I still think that free train rides for the old and infirm is a good idea, particularly considering that half of Korea’s elderly live in poverty. Not to mention the astonishing levels of abuse they suffer, and their suicide rate, which is 160.4 people per 100,000, or eight times higher than the OECD average.

    You really think these people should walk?

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    Hoju #43, sure, free rides for the old and infirm sounds great, kind of like arguing for means-testing the free lunch program. Make the argument for a small or favored population, then as people who have experience with slippery slopes might say, “hahaha! oops!” We both know that those free rides aren’t just for the old and infirm. I guess that in a few years that it will make more sense to mention who will not be eligible for free rides, that list will probably be shorter.

    Anyway, my main point here: As long as you don’t mind the lost revenue because it is still a good idea to have free rides for the old and infirm, please join me in arguing for my seat on the subway to be a reclining chair with a comfy head pillow.

  • wiessej

    To hoju @#40 –

    Great point. “Lost revenue” is a deceptive term. It often elicits the impression that there is a deficit – in this case a deficit of “x” billion won as a result of the free rides given to the elderly. There is an incredible trickle down here that is probably being overlooked. We have all been on the subways, and we have all seen the vendors, shops, restaurants, etc. located in many of the subway stops – especially the transfer stations. I wonder how much money these elderly people pump into those places that wouldn’t be pumped into them if, as you probably correctly suggested, the free rides to the elderly didn’t exist.

    I agree – without the free rides, the elderly would more likely stay at home or venture only into the marketplaces within close proximity to their residences. As they are an ever-growing percentage of Korean society, they probably represent a very significant percentage of the consumer spending that the subway system allows by virtue of its transport functionality.

    Let’s also all admit that the subway is CHEAP. You can get Uijongbu to Incheon for what? 3,000 won? Less? Slightly more? If the system really needed the money, fares could be raised a small percentage – and it would still be pretty darn cheap.

    Lost revenue? Perhaps, if the guy doing the figuring has only a high school level of economic expertise. But there are far more factors to consider than the raw numbers of elderly subway patrons multiplied by the cost of the fare.

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    wiessej #45, that’s a great point about the elderly spending their money on those various vendors rather than on the subway!

    What I don’t understand is why the subway system charges users at all. People could come and go throughout the city, moving from one point to the other without concerns about costs, and then use their money to support local businesses.

  • wiessej

    To naya –

    It’s possible that one reason the subway system is not entirely a social welfare program of free transportation might be:

    A significant number of fares are merely for transportation to and from work by salaried individuals, or by younger individuals more financially capable of paying the fare (not so likely for the elderly), thus enabling the free pass for the elderly in the first place.

    My post above was not entirely to justify free transportation for the elderly. It was more to suggest that there may be many factors involved, and that simply tallying up what a high school economist might term as lost revenue probably falls far short of the many factors involved and the farther-reaching implications.

    In a nutshell, it’s a geometry problem, and some of the suggested answers don’t venture beyond simple “long division”.

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    We both know that those free rides aren’t just for the old and infirm.

    They’re not? Who are they for? Actually, I just checked, and you’re right: they’re for senior citizens and the disabled. Or did I miss something? Terrible isn’t it, not only do we have old people getting transit passes, we have cripples too! The shadow of Marxism is casting its long shadow across the land!

    As long as you don’t mind the lost revenue because it is still a good idea to have free rides for the old and infirm, please join me in arguing for my seat on the subway to be a reclining chair with a comfy head pillow.

    We’re not talking about you and me, or reclining chairs with comfy pillows, or slippery slopes, we’re talking about basic transit passes for the elderly and the disabled. period. Argue the point.

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    wiessej #47, good point. Too bad I’m not in the National Assembly, I would proposing making the subway free during off-peak hours as a way to stimulate the economy. More subway conductors, subway cars, technicians, etc., would be needed, so that would boost employment. More people riding during off-peak hours would mean that they could use the money they would have spent on the subway on local businesses. Anyway, you are one of the toughest guys on this list so I’m not about to disagree with you.

    Hoju #48, I don’t appreciate your stinginess when it comes to me having a nice comfy seat on the subway. I will be a senior citizen soon so I need to start planning for my leisurely days.

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    nayaCasey,

    Let me ask you an honest question. Try to give me an honest answer.

    If there was no danger of any sort of socialist policy creep, would you support transit passes for the elderly and the disabled?

    Yes or no?

  • hamel

    Hoju: wow. Gutsy call. I think sometime in the last two months, nayaCasey has decided to change tack and advocate nothing but the opposite of what he actually believes in.

  • hamel

    Well, Hamel, I don’t know. But since you ask, what would YOU do?

    Take the children from her and sell them into sla put them into foster care. Tell the mother she is work shy and can have them back when she produces enough to deserve them. Also, offer her a cash incentive to be sterilized.

  • fanwarrior

    “pink boots and sunglasses in December”
    since no one pointed this out, the pink boots are clearly ugg boots, rather appropriate for december.

  • taekwonV

    As a 1.5er (emigrated from Korea to US at 9), I too think the girl’s probably a gyopo, but adamantly disagree that is the sole reason for her outlandish behavior. My mostly 2.0 Korean friends and I would NEVER act that way to anyone, especially elders, whether it be in the US, Korea, or Zimbabwe.

    I believe emigrated adults are stuck in the mindset of the times from when they had left Korea (i.e., my parents are stuck in the 80′s Korea). Therefore, for the past ~30 years, they’ve been stuck in the 80′s discipline mentality (extreme filial piety), as opposed to parents who’ve always been in Korea (they got with the times).

    So, if anything, I believe most gyopos raised by these emigrated parents are more “old school” in terms of respectful behavior. This girl’s probably just a rich privileged b***h whose parents also think they’re above everyone else.

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    Hoju: wow. Gutsy call. I think sometime in the last two months, nayaCasey has decided to change tack and advocate nothing but the opposite of what he actually believes in.

    What does he believe in? I thought he was just another libertarian clone.

    Anyway, I just find it annoying that people would begrudge Korea’s elderly from a free transit ticket, considering that half of them live in abject poverty.

    As for the slippery slope argument, it’s a cynical little ploy that means they don’t have to defend their real position (which in this case is demanding an end to free transit tickets for old people and cripples). I wouldn’t want to argue the position either.

    What’s really telling is when you pose a question that isn’t easily deflected and you get no response.

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    Hoju #50, you must have missed post #44 where I supported these free rides and post #49 where I clearly called for the subway to be free during off-peak hours because of the “multipliers” that would result. Using government money and force to feed babies for free or give free subway bus rides to seasoned citizens is too popular to oppose, people tend to get annoyed by people who even mention the cost. So, olé!

    Hoju #55, I don’t worry about slippery slopes either, I have been convinced by people who prefer to consider each program in isolation, especially those for favored or sympathetic groups. That’s why I am in favor of a “Good Government Day” in which everyone gets to recommend one thing they’d like the government to do. I suggest another day, “How to Pay for It Day,” to be held approximately 48 years later.

    I would start the Good Government list with inspiration from Bastiat, who noted the many calls for government action (1848).
    http://www.econlib.org/library/Bastiat/basEss5.html

    “Organize labor and the workers.”
    “Root out selfishness.”
    “Repress the insolence and tyranny of capital.”
    “Make experiments with manure and with eggs.”
    “Furrow the countryside with railroads.”
    “Irrigate the plains.”
    “Plant forests on the mountains.”
    “Establish model farms.”
    “Establish harmonious workshops.”
    “Colonize Algeria.”
    “Feed the babies.”
    “Instruct the young.”
    “Relieve the aged.”
    “Send the city folk into the country.”
    “Equalize the profits of all industries.”
    “Lend money, without interest, to those who desire it.”
    “Liberate Italy, Poland, and Hungary.”
    “Improve the breed of saddle horses.”
    “Encourage art; train musicians and dancers.”
    “Restrict trade, and at the same time create a merchant marine.”
    “Discover truth and knock a bit of sense into our heads.”
    “The function of the state is to enlighten, to develop, to increase, to fortify, to spiritualize, and to sanctify the soul of a nation.”

    I guess we can add farm subsidies, free subway rides, regulating the temperature of air conditioners in department stores, redistribute wealth, reduce inequality, promote industrial policy, bailout banks, impose minimum wage and living wage laws, etc., etc., etc.

    Olé!!!

  • wiessej

    to nayaCasey –

    You know, you are starting to sound silly. It’s about the elderly, infirm etc., getting a free ride on a subway. Period. End of story. Sure, there are likely other things in Korean society that allow seniors or some other designated group of people some sort of advantage – but it’s all in the pursuit of good public policy. It’s a simple gesture. Could be politically motivated, or maybe it’s just the right thing to do.

    Unlike your list of altruistic, utopian pursuits, free rides for seniors, etc. is just a single practical, tangible measure.

    There is no slippery slope here, your intellectual bulldozing efforts notwithstanding.

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    nayaCasey:

    Hoju #50, you must have missed post #44 where I supported these free rides and post #49 where I clearly called for the subway to be free during off-peak hours because of the “multipliers” that would result.

    You’ll have to forgive me, but I can’t distinguishes between your serious comments and your sarcastic ones – does anyone else have this difficulty?

    Maybe it’s because some of your sarcastic suggestions are actually very sensible, while some of your sensible comments are borderline retarded.

    Either way, the smarmy and flippant attitude is really fucking annoying. Just saying.

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    wiessej #57, it seems that the Korea Herald was even connecting the elderly, disabled and “men of national merit” getting free rides to officials raising the subway fare. And apparently some officials want to end the free rides for people less than 70 years old.
    http://www.koreaherald.com/national/Detail.jsp?newsMLId=20110519000618

    If I am reading the articles correctly then they are using the free rides as a scapegoat. The most recent deficit was 574 billion won–the free rides account for less than 40 percent of that.

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    I have been convinced by people who prefer to consider each program in isolation

    I don’t think you have, but you ought to be. Not wanting to point out the bleeding obvious for a third time, but as wiessej just said, this is about the elderly and the infirm getting transit passes. Nothing else.

    Trying to bundle it up with the ruminations of an 18th century French classical liberal theorist just makes you sound silly.

    Next time someone defends their right to bear arms, shall I argue against their position on a account of the slippery gun-ownership slope that will inevitably lead to the right to murder people in the street?

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    Hoju #58, nothing to forgive. Just a few days ago you were saying I was “outraged” and “hysterical.” Now, it is smarmy and flippant. In a few days or hours it could be something completely different–I’ll care then just as much as I do now!

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    Hoju #58, nothing to forgive. Just a few days ago you were saying I was “outraged” and “hysterical.” Now, it is smarmy and flippant. In a few days or hours it could be something completely different–I’ll care then just as much as I do now!

    You’re getting hysterical again. Calm down!

    Anyway, #59 illustrates my point about how confusing your comments are.

    Are you for or against elderly and disabled free transit? I really don’t know.

  • wiessej

    The Korea Herald???? That bastion of journalistic integrity? Sorry…I think I just threw up a little in my mouth.

    However, since you brought it up, if you re-read the article, you may notice that “[t]he city originally planned to raise the fare by 100 won every two years, but withheld the decision to raise prices in 2009 and 2010 after considering the economic downturn.”

    One could easily argue that the failure to raise the fares since 2007 was the more significant factor in the loss of revenue. Free rides for seniors was built into the 2007 pricing.

    Still, I bet ya they won’t raise the senior age requirement.

  • wiessej

    Ditto to #62. I can’t tell either.

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    wiessej #63, right, it was probably just a trial balloon to see if seniors would protest a raise in the age requirement. Those seasoned citizens should not be underestimated when it comes to raising hell to protect their benefits or to get people out of their seats on the subway.

  • wiessej

    nayaCasey @#65

    Can you blame senior citizens for pushing their agenda? Everyone does. Nothing wrong with it.

  • http://www.caseyradio.org nayaCasey

    wiessej #66, of course I would not blame the seasoned citizens for pushing their agenda, that’s exactly my thinking behind Good Government Day. Hey, if there is a big Piñata with a bunch of goodies hanging, why not jump in and take your swat at it, too? At least, that’s something that a 19th century French liberal theorist might have said about that…

  • wiessej

    To nayaCasey – Are you trying to make an actual point? I mean is there some position you are actually trying to support? I can’t figure it out here.

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    NayaCasey – demonstrating the importance of being earnest. Props.

  • hamel