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Old 08-18-2014, 09:23 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 19 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,002 posts, read 102,592,596 times
Reputation: 33059

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Opin_Yunated View Post
What does that have to do with this conversation? Save your liberal-bashing politics for another thread.



..........the car subsidies are not minimal. Cars are funding only 50% of their infrastructure. They are also a huge long term burden to our country's health, physically and fiscally.

I actually perfer the gas tax as well. It should be higher and the additional funding should go towards all forms of infrastructure. Cars are not an economic asset; they are a liability.



Transit should be subsidized. Transit reduces congestion. Transit gets people off the roads, frees up parking, and is more efficient in MPPGe (miles per-passenger gallon) than personal vehicles. The transit zealots get a pass. The modes are not equal.
Oh, no it's not more efficient! We've discussed this many times. Do a SEARCH!

 
Old 08-18-2014, 09:37 AM
 
2,824 posts, read 3,350,485 times
Reputation: 3030
Quote:
Originally Posted by Opin_Yunated View Post
What does that have to do with this conversation? Save your liberal-bashing politics for another thread.
Because the whiner was asking to impose even more taxes - and it was clear that the taxes were already high - some of the highest in the nation. It was also apparent that more taxes were not going to solve the problem in his area.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Opin_Yunated View Post
..........the car subsidies are not minimal. Cars are funding only 50% of their infrastructure. They are also a huge long term burden to our country's health, physically and fiscally.
Says who? The infrastructure is also used for far more than cars. What percentage of the "infrastructure" should be borne by all non-car uses? Where do you think the other 50% is coming from? Car drivers.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Opin_Yunated View Post
I actually perfer the gas tax as well. It should be higher and the additional funding should go towards all forms of infrastructure. Cars are not an economic asset; they are a liability.
You can make the claim that everything is a liability but just because you make the statement doesn't make it so. Housing is a liability. After all the owner has a liability for property taxes, right?

You have made no logical case nor provided any facts for your claim that cars are a liability nor indicated to whom they are a liability. For most folks cars are an economic asset or an enabler for economic improvement for the owner or user.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Opin_Yunated View Post
Transit should be subsidized. Transit reduces congestion. Transit gets people off the roads, frees up parking, and is more efficient in MPPGe (miles per-passenger gallon) than personal vehicles. The transit zealots get a pass. The modes are not equal.
Based on your "logic" higher unemployment is desirable because it results in reduced congestion, gets people off the roads, and frees up parking. Without employment you don't need mass transit. Shipping people around in high volume along government-mandated paths and destinations is hardly a reason in and of itself to promote free rides for transit zealots. Transit serves a fraction of the populace expected to pay for it.
 
Old 08-18-2014, 02:58 PM
 
Location: Chicago
1,312 posts, read 1,582,448 times
Reputation: 1487
Here's some figures (from not a math whiz) that John Q. Public would love:

If 300,000,000 John Q. Publics drove 100 miles a day for 60 years, 365 days a year, with a lifetime tax burden of $79,059 based on the highest rate in the country (2014 dollars, numbers/MPG taken from the OP), then the gas tax would account for...

23.7177 TRILLION DOLLARS.

In 2014 money, the total amount of interstate miles (42,795) multiplied by the lowest cost per mile to build in 2014 ($1,600,000, from OP) equals...

68.472 BILLION DOLLARS.

That means 346 US INTERSTATE SYSTEMS could be built for what those John Q. Publics pay into gas taxes. Just driving a car for one trip helps fund 346 subsidized people taking public transit.



That means that one day of driving would alllmmmooosstt pay for a full interstate system; 94.79% of a US interstate system, to be exact.

Anyone can feel free to critique my numbers. But, really… gas tax pays for the roads.

 
Old 08-18-2014, 04:12 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,062 posts, read 16,081,530 times
Reputation: 12641
Quote:
Originally Posted by Opin_Yunated View Post
..........the car subsidies are not minimal. Cars are funding only 50% of their infrastructure. They are also a huge long term burden to our country's health, physically and fiscally.

I actually perfer the gas tax as well. It should be higher and the additional funding should go towards all forms of infrastructure. Cars are not an economic asset; they are a liability.
Actually, they are pretty minimal. I mean, since so many people drive the total number comes out looking pretty big, but the subsidy for me based on numbers from my MTP (metropolitan transportation planning organization), it's about $300/yr. That's really pretty minimal. I drove more than most although I also drive a more fuel efficient vehicle than most. $250-$500 is probably a typical subsidy for the average driver in my area. Perversely, driving a fuel efficient car means you get more subsidy than someone driving a gas guzzler. It really should switch to vehicle weight and miles per year driven, but that's much more complicated.

Cars are absolutely an economic asset. Just today I had an intown job (rare). It takes about 45 minutes on public transit to get there and 15 minutes to drive. The car saves me an hour. Again, that's a rarity. At least 50% of my jobs I couldn't get to at all via transit. So figure the car for me generates about $30-40k in economic output at least.

Quote:
Transit should be subsidized. Transit reduces congestion. Transit gets people off the roads, frees up parking, and is more efficient in MPPGe (miles per-passenger gallon) than personal vehicles. The transit zealots get a pass. The modes are not equal.
[/quote]
Why?

There's not really any traffic congestion here. It's not a big city with big city traffic. I've never once had any problem finding parking here. Those are just pretty much non-issues. They are issues in some places, however, and maybe transit should be subsidized in those places and parking/driving penalized. They usually are. San Francisco has something like 25% tax on off-street parking. Seattle has parking maximums in the downtown area which artificially raise the price (and it also has a tax on parking).

As far as MPGE, that's actually incorrect. Buses use 4,000 BTU/passenger mile. Personal truck use 3,600. Personal cars use 3,200. That's 2012 numbers so pretty recent. Rail is slightly better than cars but not significantly. Transit rail uses 2,400 BTU/passenger mile and commuter rail uses 2,800. My Prius (solo) gets about 2,300 BTU/mile. The Nissan Leaf uses about 1,100 BTU/mile. If you want to subsidize something, electric cars are what to subsidize. I'm really NOT for it in principal, but it is a much sounder policy than subsidizing transit. The subsidies aren't even really that outlandish either at $10k here in California. It's for sure a lot of money, but so are transit subsidies. $10k might take 3-6 years to offset compared to the subsidy a transit user gets.

http://cta.ornl.gov/data/tedb33/Edition33_Chapter02.pdf

Table 2.12 is what you want to look at.
 
Old 08-18-2014, 04:21 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,062 posts, read 16,081,530 times
Reputation: 12641
Quote:
Originally Posted by A2DAC1985 View Post
Here's some figures (from not a math whiz) that John Q. Public would love:

If 300,000,000 John Q. Publics drove 100 miles a day for 60 years, 365 days a year, with a lifetime tax burden of $79,059 based on the highest rate in the country (2014 dollars, numbers/MPG taken from the OP), then the gas tax would account for...

23.7177 TRILLION DOLLARS.

In 2014 money, the total amount of interstate miles (42,795) multiplied by the lowest cost per mile to build in 2014 ($1,600,000, from OP) equals...

68.472 BILLION DOLLARS.

That means 346 US INTERSTATE SYSTEMS could be built for what those John Q. Publics pay into gas taxes. Just driving a car for one trip helps fund 346 subsidized people taking public transit.



That means that one day of driving would alllmmmooosstt pay for a full interstate system; 94.79% of a US interstate system, to be exact.

Anyone can feel free to critique my numbers. But, really… gas tax pays for the roads.

Sure. They're baloney like most your numbers. Completely fabricated with no basis in reality.
 
Old 08-18-2014, 05:05 PM
 
2,553 posts, read 2,005,048 times
Reputation: 1348
Quote:
Originally Posted by jade408 View Post
Bike lanes on the shoulder of a high speed road to not attract bicyclists to use it. Nicer bike lane, more people take up biking it is really simple. If it isn't comfortable, your don't want to do it.
I was talking about the economic justification of road diets w/ bike lanes. I'm assuming that's what you were responding to. I say they are hard-er to justify because they involve more costs to consider.

I've spent the last few pages trying to lay out how bike lanes are so cheap--as low as $5k per mile if we only lay a stripe and do nothing more--that there's little argument against them. But, the costs quickly jump once we start to consider protected lanes, bike boxes at intersections, signal buttons for cyclists, etc.

As you can see, I made no argument against more extensive projects, except to note that, obviously, they are more complicated and thus need to be justified.

Last edited by darkeconomist; 08-18-2014 at 05:15 PM..
 
Old 08-18-2014, 05:06 PM
 
2,493 posts, read 2,194,455 times
Reputation: 3351
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
Why?

There's not really any traffic congestion here. It's not a big city with big city traffic. I've never once had any problem finding parking here. Those are just pretty much non-issues. They are issues in some places, however, and maybe transit should be subsidized in those places and parking/driving penalized.

Even places with no congestion need transit for those without cars.
Too young, too old, too poor, disabled, poor eyesight, legal issues etc etc.

As we have moved from a manufacturing economy to a service economy ("you want fries with that?)
subsidized transit has become a subsidy for employers that can't or won't pay a living wage.
 
Old 08-18-2014, 06:27 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,062 posts, read 16,081,530 times
Reputation: 12641
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddyline View Post
Even places with no congestion need transit for those without cars.
Too young, too old, too poor, disabled, poor eyesight, legal issues etc etc.
Again, I'm not a big proponent of that line of thinking. Many people believe that and I can understand, to a degree, the arguments for that line of thinking. I'm a small "L" libertarian. As such, I mostly disagree that it is the governments job to provide for the general welfare of people. It is, however, the governments job to PROMOTE the general welfare. Transit has a place in promoting the general welfare.

The problem is in the implementation. The problem with what I call welfare transit is that it's counter productive. Minimum level of service transit creates a lot of problems. Namely it sucks and makes TOD impossible. Recently we've switched from providing mostly minimum level of service welfare transit to providing transit corridors. Transit has gotten even worse in most places but is actually very good along six basic corridor routes. Again, it will take many, many, many years until TOD along those corridors is realized, but it's something that now can possibly occur. Hopefully it will and we'll see a shift away from more or less exclusively auto-dependent landuse. That was, in my opinion, very bad policy overall. It was bad policy to promote auto-only development, and it was bad policy to provide minimum level of (crappy) service welfare transit to all areas at the expense of having an actual functional transportation system.

Now, don't misconstrue that as my having any problem with auto-dependent development. I don't. I just think it's bad policy to have that be the only development, which is really the only development that occurred here for the last 60 or so years. Now, if somebody who can't drive for some reason or another chooses to live in a more auto-dependent area where the transit is awful or just doesn't exist (or an employer chooses to locate their business there)... well, so what. They chose to live there or operate there. I strongly disagree that transit from everywhere to everywhere is a basic right the government has to provide. That doesn't mean I don't think no transit at all is the answer. I'm just against stupid transit. We have lots and lots of stupid transit in this country.
 
Old 08-18-2014, 07:07 PM
 
Location: Youngstown, Oh.
4,896 posts, read 7,657,858 times
Reputation: 4508
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
Again, I'm not a big proponent of that line of thinking. Many people believe that and I can understand, to a degree, the arguments for that line of thinking. I'm a small "L" libertarian. As such, I mostly disagree that it is the governments job to provide for the general welfare of people. It is, however, the governments job to PROMOTE the general welfare. Transit has a place in promoting the general welfare.

The problem is in the implementation. The problem with what I call welfare transit is that it's counter productive. Minimum level of service transit creates a lot of problems. Namely it sucks and makes TOD impossible. Recently we've switched from providing mostly minimum level of service welfare transit to providing transit corridors. Transit has gotten even worse in most places but is actually very good along six basic corridor routes. Again, it will take many, many, many years until TOD along those corridors is realized, but it's something that now can possibly occur. Hopefully it will and we'll see a shift away from more or less exclusively auto-dependent landuse. That was, in my opinion, very bad policy overall. It was bad policy to promote auto-only development, and it was bad policy to provide minimum level of (crappy) service welfare transit to all areas at the expense of having an actual functional transportation system.

Now, don't misconstrue that as my having any problem with auto-dependent development. I don't. I just think it's bad policy to have that be the only development, which is really the only development that occurred here for the last 60 or so years. Now, if somebody who can't drive for some reason or another chooses to live in a more auto-dependent area where the transit is awful or just doesn't exist (or an employer chooses to locate their business there)... well, so what. They chose to live there or operate there. I strongly disagree that transit from everywhere to everywhere is a basic right the government has to provide. That doesn't mean I don't think no transit at all is the answer. I'm just against stupid transit. We have lots and lots of stupid transit in this country.
I can't speak for anyone else, but we're generally on the same page, here.

But, I do take issue with the sentences I bolded. Because of the focus on auto-dependent development over the last 60 years, there are, IMO, far too few options for non-drivers like me. So, I'll continue to advocate for bringing the scales back into balance, as much as possible.
 
Old 08-18-2014, 07:52 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 19 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
87,002 posts, read 102,592,596 times
Reputation: 33059
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
Again, I'm not a big proponent of that line of thinking. Many people believe that and I can understand, to a degree, the arguments for that line of thinking. I'm a small "L" libertarian. As such, I mostly disagree that it is the governments job to provide for the general welfare of people. It is, however, the governments job to PROMOTE the general welfare. Transit has a place in promoting the general welfare.

The problem is in the implementation. The problem with what I call welfare transit is that it's counter productive. Minimum level of service transit creates a lot of problems. Namely it sucks and makes TOD impossible. Recently we've switched from providing mostly minimum level of service welfare transit to providing transit corridors. Transit has gotten even worse in most places but is actually very good along six basic corridor routes. Again, it will take many, many, many years until TOD along those corridors is realized, but it's something that now can possibly occur. Hopefully it will and we'll see a shift away from more or less exclusively auto-dependent landuse. That was, in my opinion, very bad policy overall. It was bad policy to promote auto-only development, and it was bad policy to provide minimum level of (crappy) service welfare transit to all areas at the expense of having an actual functional transportation system.

Now, don't misconstrue that as my having any problem with auto-dependent development. I don't. I just think it's bad policy to have that be the only development, which is really the only development that occurred here for the last 60 or so years. Now, if somebody who can't drive for some reason or another chooses to live in a more auto-dependent area where the transit is awful or just doesn't exist (or an employer chooses to locate their business there)... well, so what. They chose to live there or operate there. I strongly disagree that transit from everywhere to everywhere is a basic right the government has to provide. That doesn't mean I don't think no transit at all is the answer. I'm just against stupid transit. We have lots and lots of stupid transit in this country.
Yes indeed. I mean, my Goodness, people don't even want to subsidize health care for the poor. The argument always comes up, "where in the constitution, yada, yada"? Well, where in the constitution does it say people have a right to subsidized transportation? And really, these light rail systems are much wanted and used by yuppies and hipsters who can more than afford to pay the full cost of the ride, including a portion of the billions being spent to build these things.

Now, because this is CD, I always have to explain myself. I personally am not opposed to public transit, and I think one good reason for having a good PT system is that some people can't afford private autos. But I do not believe there is a right to subsidized transit. When transit systems were first built, they were run by for-profit companies. As fewer people used them,they started losing money and even failing, so the govt. stepped in. My "inner Libertarian" sneaking out to say hello!
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