Thursday, May 1, 2014

When You Have to Pay Tolls on the Freeway, Thank Repugs

Because their anti-tax hysteria has allowed the gas tax to fall so low - and federal revenues slashed so deeply - that the only way to maintain the highway system is to install tolls.

Kevin Drum:

Now, there's arguably a good reason to allow tolls. Basically, it makes driving on interstates more of a pain in the ass, which probably means marginally less driving on interstates. And less driving is good for the planet. So if you think that making it less convenient to drive is a good idea, tolls might help.

But you know what else would cut down on driving? Gas taxes restored to 1993 levels. So what's the point of dicking around instead with tolls and corporate tax reform and all that? The answer, of course, is Republicans, who have sworn a blood oath never to raise taxes, even if "raising" actually means "keeping them at the same level." So instead of just bumping up the gax tax by a dime or two and then indexing it to inflation—no muss, no fuss—we're going to play a bunch of idiotic and annoying games merely to keep our roads in decent repair.

Thanks, Republicans. I appreciate it.
There's already a mini-rebellion in Kentucky communities along the Ohio River against proposed tolls to pay for replacing for currently-free but crumbling-to-dust bridges many use for daily commutes. If we have to pay five bucks every time just to get on the I-64 Louisville-Frankfort-Lexington route or I-75 to Florida or I-65 to Nashville, it's gonna get ugly.

Anybody ask Mitch or Alison whether they prefer taxes or tolls? Only other choice is closed-down highways, motherfuckers.

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