We really are driving less! And so are the Amish!

amish buggy
amish buggy

You might think that by now, every angle of the gas price hike has been explored, but there are a couple of new nuggets out today. One, from Paul Kedrosky's "Infectious Greed," is a hard look at just how much driving has changed. He has numbers from the Union-Tribune on driving patterns in the San Diego area. It's just one small snapshot of the country, but it is probably being repeated in the same proportions everywhere.

Highway travel on major roads in that area is down across the board, with some down as far as 15 and 17%. The only region named that didn't have any major decrease was Los Angeles County during weekdays, which was unchanged.

The other group being hit by the gas price crisis? The Amish. Go figure. The headline, of course, is meant to stop people short, because we all know that the Amish don't drive in cars. But USA Today says that Amish craftsmen and farmers who use diesel fuel are feeling pinched. There's actually no restriction on using engines -- just not electricity -- explains an Amish expert.

I grew up in Amish country -- the heart of it in Lancaster, PA -- so this comes as no surprise to me. But what I'm waiting to see is how the Amish, who are masters of ingenuity, get around the fuel crisis. With all the corn that they grow, shouldn't we be seeing some innovations in ethanol?