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View Poll Results: Would you have supported a significant increase in the gas tax a decade ago?
Absolutely! We could've built some great public transit by now. 11 57.89%
No way! I've enjoyed and benefited from cheaper gas over the past ten years. 8 42.11%
Voters: 19. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 05-07-2008, 07:09 AM
 
Location: Oak Park, IL
5,525 posts, read 13,980,003 times
Reputation: 3908

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Here's a hypothetical question about tax policy.

Gas prices are now causing serious pain for many Americans. I've seen lots of people post that they can barely afford to fill up their gas tank, but they have no choice because they live 20 miles from work and there is no public transit available for them.

Given what we know now, would it have been better to increase the federal gas tax (currently 18 cents/gal, say triple or quadruple it) ten years ago (when it was still under $2/gal).

The benefits would have been:
1. Improved and expanded public transit (resulting from the extra federal funds.)
2. A push towards more fuel efficiency (maybe now we'd have 80 mile/gal cars today.)
3. Less auto-centric land-development policies (maybe now you'd live in a neighborhood where you could walk or take transit to work, shopping, etc.)
4. Decreased worldwide demand for oil resulting in lower (or at least the same) prices today (and at least the money would be going to the US government, rather than the Saudi government.)
5. Increased incentive to switch to alternative energy sources, possible reduction in pollution (solar, geothermal, wind, etc)

The drawbacks:
1. Obviously, more expensive fuel costs over the past decade and all the resulting consequences of higher fuel costs.
2. The real possibility that some/all of the fuel tax money would be wasted by the Feds rather than invested in transit.

Last edited by oakparkdude; 05-07-2008 at 07:18 AM..
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Old 05-07-2008, 07:18 AM
 
Location: North Cackelacky....in the hills.
19,567 posts, read 21,907,341 times
Reputation: 2519
As a LOT of the USA is an urban/suburban sprawl I cannot see how mass transit would work that well....

I personally would be a little offended that the gas tax which is supposed to be to maintain/improve the roads and highways was used on mass transit.


A better plan would have been a voluntary contribution by those wanting such things,this way it could be easily assessed how important it REALLY is to people....

Of course the $3 the gov. would have collected wouldn't have bought much, seeing as how most of those in favor of such things don't want to spend their OWN mponey but everyone elses...
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Old 05-07-2008, 08:40 AM
 
Location: Oak Park, IL
5,525 posts, read 13,980,003 times
Reputation: 3908
Quote:
Originally Posted by oz in SC View Post
As a LOT of the USA is an urban/suburban sprawl I cannot see how mass transit would work that well....
Most of America lives in suburbs. Suburban density can be amenable to public transit assuming (and this is a big assumption) that appropriate land-development policies are instituted. This is key, building mass transit routes is not sufficient, you also need to align development to feed into toward transit routes. This means high-density development around train stations, creating a desirable walkable/transit-friendly neighborhood which increases use and usefulness of transit.

I would argue that increasing the price of gas would have shifted construction over the past decade towards transit-oriented development. Instead, we got low-density sprawl and now we have $4/gal gas, we're stuck with this transit-unfriendly infrastructure. God help us if gas goes up to $7.50/gal as some experts predict.
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Old 05-07-2008, 08:46 AM
 
9,899 posts, read 10,848,778 times
Reputation: 3108
Uh, What? Hypothetical indeed and a flawed one at that! Raising the gas tax ten years ago would have only increased the governments addiction to oil revenue earlier and at a greater expense to all of us. We should have been drilling for oil ten years ago and building refineries, THAT, would have actually made a significant difference in our dependence on foriegn oil and the prices we are paying today!
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Old 05-07-2008, 09:01 AM
 
196 posts, read 209,059 times
Reputation: 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by sukwoo View Post
Here's a hypothetical question about tax policy.

Gas prices are now causing serious pain for many Americans. I've seen lots of people post that they can barely afford to fill up their gas tank, but they have no choice because they live 20 miles from work and there is no public transit available for them.

Given what we know now, would it have been better to increase the federal gas tax (currently 18 cents/gal, say triple or quadruple it) ten years ago (when it was still under $2/gal).

The benefits would have been:
1. Improved and expanded public transit (resulting from the extra federal funds.)
2. A push towards more fuel efficiency (maybe now we'd have 80 mile/gal cars today.)
3. Less auto-centric land-development policies (maybe now you'd live in a neighborhood where you could walk or take transit to work, shopping, etc.)
4. Decreased worldwide demand for oil resulting in lower (or at least the same) prices today (and at least the money would be going to the US government, rather than the Saudi government.)
5. Increased incentive to switch to alternative energy sources, possible reduction in pollution (solar, geothermal, wind, etc)

The drawbacks:
1. Obviously, more expensive fuel costs over the past decade and all the resulting consequences of higher fuel costs.
2. The real possibility that some/all of the fuel tax money would be wasted by the Feds rather than invested in transit.

judging from the poll results, theres some folks who got more gas in them than at the pump.....

p.s. did anyone ask the boys over at Exxon/Mobil to vote, lol....

hey, somebody in here really likes a rig'd game....when I looked at the poll results the first time, it was like 50/50...nolw its like 25/80 in favor of yes, lol....this is the feds or whaaaa???....Im takin my phone of the hook, you guys aint listenin to what Im sayin or typin, lmao.....

Last edited by Sparco; 05-07-2008 at 09:19 AM..
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Old 05-07-2008, 09:18 AM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
9,059 posts, read 12,992,707 times
Reputation: 1401
You can't drill your way out of this.

There should've been a third option: with exception. I only said absolutely assuming that the taxes would be redirected towards the maintenance of highways and not raided like the social security trust fund is.

Drivers supporting a tax cut astonish me. They want to socialize their highway costs to those who are prudent enough to find alternative ways to commute and travel.
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Old 05-07-2008, 09:23 AM
 
196 posts, read 209,059 times
Reputation: 34
Quote:
Originally Posted by ViewFromThePeak View Post
You can't drill your way out of this.

There should've been a third option: with exception. I only said absolutely assuming that the taxes would be redirected towards the maintenance of highways and not raided like the social security trust fund is.

Drivers supporting a tax cut astonish me. They want to socialize their highway costs to those who are prudent enough to find alternative ways to commute and travel.

man, for what the bastards are chargin us for gas, they coulda built a highway from here to Munich....they built hways years before gas got this steep, take a pretty stupid individual to believe anything else and vote yes on it....
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Old 05-07-2008, 09:49 AM
 
Location: California
11,466 posts, read 19,379,251 times
Reputation: 12713
I've never voted to raise any tax.
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Old 05-07-2008, 10:09 AM
 
9,899 posts, read 10,848,778 times
Reputation: 3108
Quote:
Originally Posted by ViewFromThePeak View Post
You can't drill your way out of this.

There should've been a third option: with exception. I only said absolutely assuming that the taxes would be redirected towards the maintenance of highways and not raided like the social security trust fund is.

Drivers supporting a tax cut astonish me. They want to socialize their highway costs to those who are prudent enough to find alternative ways to commute and travel.
No, quite the contrary , I just want them paid for by those that use them, and those that build and maintain them accountable to those who pay for them!!
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Old 05-07-2008, 10:26 AM
 
1,477 posts, read 4,410,517 times
Reputation: 522
America has really screwed this up. Years ago we could have listened to the experts and their calls for smarter growth, controlling sprawl, and better transportation options. Now, when we finally have to bite the bullet, the pain is going to that more extreme.

And yet, amazingly, we get some people who want to continue the same mistakes of the past! We never learn.
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