Thursday, July 28, 2011

roads, money and a study

I've had some ongoing conversations with friends about America's transportation system, funding and public transportation. The conversations usually revolve around how much money the US should put toward public transportation and how much toward roads. (This is where I'd add in something about how the more "libertarian" of my friends tend to support publicly subsidized roads, lots of them, and as far and wide as possible whereas my argument for more public mass transportation is assailed as hippie and/or communist).

Then I stumbled upon this report, "Where We Need To Go: A Civil Rights Road Map to Transportation Equality". There are a lot of staggering statistics in it, which I won't re-print here because you can just click the link and read it yourself, but it does frame the debate in a way that I have not been able to previously.

If there is a tie between transportation, access to jobs and poverty, then the Country needs to consider this when allocating funds. Public goods are only "public" if they are equally accessible to all people. If, however, public funds are spent on "goods" that are monopolized by a small percentage of the population, then they are no longer public.

In any's an interesting read, and if you have the time, take a gander.


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