The lessons to be learned when considering the idea of a taco truck on every corner include definitions of components of the built environment like corners, intersections, and taco trucks, as well as examples of concepts like supply and demand.

1 minute read

September 5, 2016, 5:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


Taco Truck

Joe Seer / Shutterstock

"A supporter of Donald Trump appeared on MSNBC’s 'All In' on Thursday night to offer a vision of a bleak, delicious future," according to an tongue-in-cheek article by Philip Bump. The kind of tension that can describe something as simultaneously bleak and delicious is apparent throughout the article.

So Bump asks us to consider "seriously" this "serious charge":

Although easy access to inexpensive Mexican food would be a boon for hungry Americans, what would the inevitable presence of those trucks do to the American economy? How could our country accommodate an explosion of trucks at that scale?

To begin to answer the question, Bump defines a street corner (i.e., "A corner is dependent on an intersection of street, a place where two roads meet or where one road turns…"). Unfortunately, laments Bump, "there doesn’t appear to be an official tally of the number of intersections in the United States."

In the process of trying to make the calculations necessary to consider the idea of a taco truck on every corner, Bump produces a lot of information about what we don't know and what we assume when talking about the country as a whole—and the preposterousness of making blanket statements.

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