According to a recent study by the city of Copenhagen, Denmark, if you ride your bike for a mile you contribute about 42 cents to the overall economy. By contrast, each mile you drive your car costs society about 20 cents. Combine the two, and driving has a net social cost of about 62 cents per mile compared to bicycling.
Of course, Copenhagen is one of the most bike-friendly cities in the world. And Denmark has been focusing for many years on becoming more pedestrian-friendly which, compared to Backboro and a whole lot of other places, means more bike-friendly as well. But if that's what it takes to have a socially and economically sustainable (even profitable) transportation system, maybe we'll just have to bite the bullet, step away from the gasoline pump, and move a bit closer to environmental sustainability as well.
In fact, that might not be too unpleasant. After all, Danes are also rated the happiest people in the world. Consistently.