More proof that socialism does not work

velorution20-20parisian20guy20w20white20glasses20on20velibAnd that the NY Times and the WaPo were too stupid to see this coming.  The Socialist mayor of Paris, Bertrand Delano, was going to save the planet with his brilliant scheme to have 10,000 bicycles all over Paris for anyone to rent any time.  The plan was to cut down on automobile usage, congestion, encourage exercise, etc. yada yada yada. 

Before the plan was rolled out, the WaPo wrote glowingly about how wonderful the project was going to be:  

….”On July 15, the day after Bastille Day, Parisians will wake up to discover thousands of low-cost rental bikes at hundreds of high-tech bicycle stations scattered throughout the city, an ambitious program to cut traffic, reduce pollution, improve parking and enhance the city’s image as a greener, quieter, more relaxed place.”

“By the end of the year, organizers and city officials say, there should be 20,600 bikes at 1,450 stations — or about one station every 250 yards across the entire city. Based on experience elsewhere — particularly in Lyon, France’s third-largest city, which launched a similar system two years ago — regular users of the bikes will ride them almost for free.”

A  year after the introduction of the plan the NY Times wrote a glowing article about how wonderful the little socialist plan was succeeding. But already the wheels were beginning to fall off (pun intended):

[After glowing reports of how successful the little socialist scheme was doing:] ….”Still, there have been significant problems with traffic congestion and safety, vandalism and theft. At least 3,000 of the bikes have been stolen — nearly 15 percent of the total, and twice original estimates. Some have been seen in Romania or found in shipping containers on their way to Morocco.” [ Whoops. Who could have seen that coming? Bikes all over the city with nobody looking after them getting stolen? I’m shocked, SHOCKED I tell you!] 

And now the truth has become apparent to even the socialist cheerleaders at the Times online.  From a 2/10/09 article:

“It was introduced to roaring success — hailed by environmentalists and cycling enthusiasts as the ideal solution to congestion on the streets. But life is now proving brutish and short for the Vélib, the self-service bicycle that the city of Paris introduced 18 months ago.”

“So far, 7,800 of the “damage-resistant” grey bicyclettes — which can be hired for up to €1 (87 pence) per half-hour — have simply vanished, while 11,600 have been vandalised, their operating company said yesterday.”   

“Hung from trees, thrown in the river or shipped to foreign parts, the Vélib bikes have met much more aggressive treatment than expected when the first of the 20,000 of them were docked at their 1,250 stations in July 2007. The damage has forced JCDecaux, the advertising company that supplies them to the city, to replace most of the original bicycles at a cost of more than €400 each. ”

“We underestimated the degree of damage that they would suffer,” said Albert Asseraf, the marketing director of JCDecaux. The scale of the Paris scheme had consequences that his firm had not encountered with its operation in Lyons, the second-biggest in the world but with still only one fifth of the Paris bikes, he said. Many were being stolen because tourists and first-time users were not docking them carefully when they returned them to their computerised stations, Mr Asseraf said. Some have turned up in Eastern Europe and Africa, according to the media….”

What’s next? The little socialists are gonna try to tell us that people treat public restrooms and porta-potties the same as they do the bathrooms in their own houses? That the DMV and the post office are run as efficiently as privately owned corporations? That people treat public property as well as they do their own privately owned property? Makes perfect sense to, well an idiot who hasn’t been around and who believes all that socialist bullshit that they teach in universities…

So, have the little commies in Paris learnt their lesson? Hell no! From the Times online article:

“Last week the city council approved the outline of Mr Delanoë’s latest self-service transport scheme: Autolibs — 2,000 clean-energy cars that will be stationed at bays around the city from autumn next year.”

But hey, with liberals/progressives/socialists, it’s the thought that counts. They meant well, therefore, it is a huge success.

[h/t The Glen Beck show]

15 responses to “More proof that socialism does not work

  1. Yep, they’re smart over there all right. I wonder if I could give 5 people I know a ticket to France?

  2. wow you’re a dumb ass. I love putting hate mongers like yourself down when I see them mindlessly fooled by the media they claim to despise. Even if the wildly sensationalistic claims of the Velib’s demise were true, it would be the fault of a multi-national corporate advertiser’s ineptitude, not that of any “little socialists.” But anyone who’s ever been to Paris (or for that matter anyone who bothers to do any actual research that doesn’t involve their cum covered keyboard) would know that the bikes are a complete success, that they transport millions of people every month, and that these inflated claims are simply a ploy by JC Decaux to get the Parisian city government TO GIVE THEM MORE PUBLIC FUNDS THAN THEIR ORIGINAL CONTRACT CALLS FOR. Now who’s the commie, you fucking moron.

  3. Just got back from Paris and this privately operated system (paid for by the company JC Decaux) works like a charm. I paid 1 euro (1, 43 USD) a day to have 20.000 bicycles on hand at 1450 automated stations. It got me through the city very quick and very cheaply. One bike had a soft tire, but that’s about my only complaint. Big thumbs up for Vélib and JC Decaux who made this system possible. This system just works, although it’s sad that some people find it funny to throw these bikes in the river, or even steal them. Socialism? What does socialism have to do with Vélib? Imagine 20.000 extra cars. You would have one big traffic jam and nobody would go anywhere.

  4. LOL… OMFG
    We got the Glen Beck, right wingnut set quoting the NEW YORK TIMES!
    You guys are such fucking hypocrites.
    Soccialism ROCKS, even though it has nothing to do with the bikes as they are privately owned.
    Of course we wouldn’t expect the Glen Beck crowd to even know the definition of socialism.

  5. It is funny how an old post will find a second life. Nonetheless, it is still current. India is going to try out the bike scheme ( and Paris has set out to socialize the ownership of autos(

    What is sad and curious is that people don’t recognize socialism when they see it. Perhaps they did not note the following excerpt from the Times online article you quoted (

    Under pressure from JCDecaux, the city has recently agreed to pay for a proportion of the destroyed and stolen machines. JCDecaux had complained that the city was making all the money from the rentals — €20 million in the first year — while the operating firm was bearing all the costs.

    When Paris contracted with a private company to put bikes all over the place, the city government certified a monopoly for a private contractor. Now, to make this monopoly work, the city is underwriting their contractor. That is how the private market works? No way!

  6. Mike! You like public toilets don’t you buddy! Oh, I’ll grant you that they beat leaves in the great National Forest, buttt…

  7. My point really was that socialism doesn’t work because if people have no private ownership in things, they don’t care about them, they don’t take care of them, they leave them laying around, or they steal them so that they can have ownership in them. Socialism. Doesn’t. Work.

  8. I am a half French half American living in Paris.

    The parisians are DELIGHTED with the Velibs. It’s a huge success all around.

    The degradation of the bikes was certainly foreseeable and they are very swift at repairing them.

    There is a cost, but there is also a benifit, everyone here sees it. I have not heard ONE person complain about them. This project is not a socialist project, even though Delanoe is left wing. It’s a smart project. You can’t dismiss it as a failure JUST because its a left wing politician who thought of it.

    And by the way, I know a LOT of people who voted Sarkozy (the right wing French president) who use Velibs every day 🙂 Food for thought…

  9. PAY ATTENTION TO WHAT I AM SAYING: I’m NOT saying that the bicycle system in Paris does not work, I’m saying that it illustrates the reason socialism does NOT work. People don’t care about stuff that does not belong to them. They don’t take care of it. They leave it where ever, they even steal it. Sure, Parisians love the system, they get cheap bikes. But then the bikes are left whereever they get stolen, damaged etc. I’d like rental cars that I could leave where ever too, and not have to worry about them, so long as the government pays for them with SOMEBODY ELSE’S MONEY.

  10. You are saying a successful transportation system illustrates why an ideology doesn’t work? How odd.

    A detail or 2: to be able to get the bike, you pay 1 euro, but you leave a 150 euro deposit. So if people dont care about the bike, they do however care about their 150 euros. Its not “somebody else’s money”. The thefts are mostly due to people not docking the bikes correctly as mentionned in the article you quoted. Hardly a socialist problem 🙂 The degradation of the bikes is mostly done by “gangs” of frustrated people (maybe because they dont have the credit card to have access to the bike?). In any case, theft and looting happens anywhere, and the availability of these bikes just don’t change much. There are hundreds of burnt cars throughout France every night. Thats private property. Anyway you are right that people steal and loot what’s not theirs. It just DOES NOT add up to socialism not working, I am sorry.

    I am a left winger as you will have guessed. But I do accept criticism of what the socialists do here, and agree, without a problem, that there can be huge flaws in socialist or left wing run countries/governments. The velib system hardly illustrates those flaws. On the contrary.

  11. Thanks for you input, and sorry that you are a left winger. 😉

  12. The writer of this blog is a moron. I have nothing more to say. “More proof that socialism does not work” because the bikes were stolen…..? Eeeeeeeehh??? You’ve got an IQ of -5 or what?

  13. People take care of their own property, and treat public property like shit. It’s human nature. Just as calling people names is embedded in the genetic make up of liberals.

  14. How about someone who comes on a blog and leaves a turd like ol’ Jerry there. Makes one wonder if he has any class.


  15. Socialism will always work until the rich no longer are rich and then of course it will fail.All systems run on cash.That is why thesocialist system is in decline world wide;the poor are poor so can’t be milked.But what happens when the money leaves then who is next for these people to victimize by saying they are rich.No;socialism is for loosers and lazy bastards that spunge off the people who create wealth.Socialism creates welfare mothers and lazy laggards.

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