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Saturday, February 23, 2008

Making good sense

Earl the Pearl tells it like it is.

Comments (9)

I would vote for a candidate that proposed raising that gas tax to pay for this infrastructure repair. I certainly hope the next president and Congress have enough guts to do it.

That said, I always wonder about spending projections. Is that $225 million a gross underestimate, like the tram? Or somewhat padded, like the Portland school district's proposed repairs of its buildings?

That means states and cities have to pick up more of the burden, and more expensive projects go unfunded.

Except in Portland, where the "burden" is ignored, and the most expensive projects, like light rail, get all the funding.

And Gil....it was $225 billion.

As Rep. Jeff Flake and SecTrans Mary Peters pointed out in their dissents to the National Surface Transportation Finance Commission report, we don't need to raise gas taxes to fund infrastructure. We just need to use the money we have more wisely and not blow it on things like light rail.

Earl the Pearl wants to raise gas taxes because he knows that Congress will dedicate 40 percent of any increase to transit -- meaning billions of dollars more money available for commuter rail, light rail, streetcars, and subsidies for transit-oriented developments. If Blumenauer cared about infrastructure, he would say, "Why build an expensive light rail bridge across the Willamette when the Sellwood is falling down?" But he doesn't -- he only cares about his utopian fantasies.

For a sobering view of this issue from 1979, see http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/197910/197910

Earl's actions speak louder than his words. He has appropriated billions for light rail while neglecting his district's need for improved roads, bridges, and water/sewer needs.

He's a hypocrite if he thinks that we can afford to spend billions on light rail, but can't afford to fix the existing infrastructure without new taxes.

One would think that after 27 years of saying the same thing. "No need for new taxes. We have plenty of money to do what we need to do if we will only change our spending priorities." And then watching for 27 years and seeing NO CHANGE in our spending priorities. That these libertarian intellectuals would find a new stick. Like maybe one that really works in the real world.

Greg C

Canals? Oh, no, Earl; no!

"And then watching for 27 years and seeing NO CHANGE in our spending priorities."

So then after god knows hwo many worthless wars have been waged, you are ready to stop protesting and accept whatever the govt does? I mean, it works in the real world.

Earl already built a canal - affectionately known as the "big pipe". But there's no higher use of a couple billion dollars, is there Earl??


Please note that Rep. Jeff Flake and SecTrans Mary Peters are in the minority on this one. But thanks for spreading nearly 30 year old nonsense.

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