Sebastian Mallaby offered a suggestion on Monday:
But there’s one antidote to loneliness that is at least intriguing. In an experiment in Austin, Princeton’s Daniel Kahneman found that commuting — generally alone, and generally by car — is rated the least enjoyable daily activity, but commuting by car pool is reasonably pleasant. Measures that promote car pooling could make Americans less isolated and healthier.
I take mass transit to work. Not because I like people; I don’t. Most days I talk to no one on the train. Not even my brother. My perfect commute would be me, in my car, alone. I only trade that away for the cost and sanity savings. Government promoting what it thinks should be my personal happiness is not a public good. Any public policy promoting car pooling to make me “less isolated and healthier” is a failure upon implementation. Liberals and conservatives need to accept this.