This article by Tom Friedman in the NYT, made me realize that with all the moaning and groaning about high fuel prices, nobody is suggesting that we return to a lower speed limit. Last weekend I drove to visit a friend up north. It's about 200 miles from where I live and I've done the trip a number of times. I almost always get 38-9 mpg with my 98 Honda Civic. I'm no speed demon but no slow poke either. Anyway, this last trip, I decided I was going to keep it under 65 the entire way. Only about 50 miles is Interstate the rest a mix of twisty, hilly 2 and 4 lane roads. I was stunned to discover that I got 42 mpg. A ~10% increase in fuel economy! It did seem that there were fewer "racers" on the roads as well and I couldn't help but wonder if the Highway Patrol has been writing fewer tickets as a result. Why hasn't a lower speed limit been part of the discussion of high oil prices? Are we simply unwilling to sacrifice like we did in the 70s? Are we unwilling to accept that oil prices are probably never going to go down? Are we simply stupid? There's been lots of talk of how fuel prices are adversely affecting the poor. A lower speed limit would automatically reduce that impact. I also think that all the 6 and 8 cylinder vehicles on the road with their rapid acceleration and cruising power means that people go fast simply because they can. If oil prices continue to stay high, there's simply no way to continue to avoid addressing this issue.