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  • #31
    Re: Top This PR!

    >Isn't this too much socialism for the anti-commie-pinko US?

    Speaking of socialist commie pinkos, the recent Ontario budget has actually brought wage and price controls back into
    the news. I remember it had some kind of personal marginal impact when I was a co-op student.

    ""I remember that great line from a now-deceased prime minister, `Zap, you're frozen,'" Sorbara said, referring to
    Pierre Trudeau's 1974 sneer when asked about a Tory plan to implement wage and price controls."

    http://tinyurl.com/76qte

    Trudeau then instituted them. The ridiculous thing about all the heat that the liberals are taking for pretty well
    now breaking all 231 promises that they made during the election is that all they had to do was show up to win.
    Although there are consequences. From the article:

    "Cabinet members will each take a $9,000 pay cut this year as a penalty for breaking the Balanced Budget
    Act that the Liberals voted for while in opposition."

    tinyurl edit

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    • #32
      Re: Top This PR!

      >The only viable long term solution is to let the market run its course. If the cost of something goes higher than people are willing to pay... people will just be driving less or taking public transit.<

      The problem with free market, let the market dictate idealism is that there is no viable non-government mode to provide transportation options. Roads and freeways exist only because of huge investment of taxpayer funds over decades of time. In the USA, except for specific urban areas on the eastern seaboard, there is no other practicial means of daily transport for millions of workers except to buy gasoline and drive a private car. Is it possible that the dreaded European system of high gas prices pushed even higher by heavy taxation is superior to ours? It forces folks to drive less (and in more reasonably sized cars) and subsidizes accessible mass transportation with the tax revenues. But mostly, free market advocates also hate taxation (Asterix?) So what's the solution? We need one soon.

      Comment


      • #33
        Re: Top This PR!

        >In the USA, except for specific urban areas on the eastern seaboard, there is no other practicial means of daily transport for millions of workers except to buy gasoline and drive a private car.

        BART, AC Transit, SMT and SCCT provide more than 1,000,000 daily northbay, southbay and eastbay riders transit in to - and out of - San Francisco and its surrounding area.

        More interesting, however, is this 2004-03-15 editorial in the SF Examiner:

        IIS ABSOLUTELY ABSURD to watch two transportation agencies in the Bay Area battle each other. A lawsuit that could be filed by BART against SamTrans, San Mateo County's transit agency, should make taxpayers cringe.

        At a time when transportation funds are in dire straits, enriching lawyers at taxpayers' expense makes absolutely no sense at all. What it proves is that the authorities that run both agencies are insensitive to the needs of their constituents.>>

        http://www.sfexaminer.com/article/index ... _editorial

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        • #34
          Re: Top This PR!

          The problem with free
          >market, let the market dictate idealism is that there is no viable
          >non-government mode to provide transportation options. Roads and freeways exist
          >only because of huge investment of taxpayer funds over decades of time. In the
          >USA, except for specific urban areas on the eastern seaboard, there is no other
          >practicial means of daily transport for millions of workers except to buy
          >gasoline and drive a private car. Is it possible that the dreaded European
          >system of high gas prices pushed even higher by heavy taxation is superior to
          >ours? It forces folks to drive less (and in more reasonably sized cars) and
          >subsidizes accessible mass transportation with the tax revenues. But mostly,
          >free market advocates also hate taxation (Asterix?) So what's the solution? We
          >need one soon.

          Actually, I'm not quite the free market advocate you think and I'm not against taxation, provided it goes towards I think are of best use (which is a very subjective opinion).

          What it can come down to, I believe, is that you can make a choice: pay more for gas; pay more in taxes so that they can subsidize gas; or pay more taxes so that a better public mass transportation system can be implemented (which will also require lobbying your elected representatives).

          Now, the latter is giving up a bit of the freedom to do what you want, when you want (and burn fossil fuels while you do it), but there are the ancillary benefits of less environmental impact and a population that will, on average be more healthy. That last item will mean greater productivity (and more cash to pay those taxes) as well as decreased health care costs (which you pay for one way or the other, either directly, or through a government or private insurance scheme).

          The decentralized urban sprawl of the generic US city didn't happen overnight, neither can this concept to fundamentally switch society's dependance on fossil fuels, but at least it is something to aim for, to say nothing of actually being productive instead of bitching about to the news media.

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          • #35
            Re: Top This PR!

            I agree, BART and the other Bay Area public transportation systems are wonderful. But, while all those hundreds of thousands ride every day, have you tried to drive the freeways at the same time? Is it possible for all those other hundreds of thousands in cars to all utilize BART? Anyway, BART and the freeways both were created by billions in tax generated money.

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            • #36
              Re: Top This PR!

              I have driven between the East Bay and Santa Clara, and it is a pain every single time. I abhor driving the 880/237 stretch leading toward Moffet Field. At one time, in 1990, that stretch was voted the 2nd-worst bottleneck in the USA. Mass transit is not THE end-all answer.

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              • #37
                Re: Top This PR!

                >Take BART.

                And here I thought that was a Simpsons' reference.

                Comment


                • #38
                  Re: Top This PR!

                  Last time I bought gas was 3 weeks ago and I still have 1/2 a tank left. Bicycles are great.

                  Comment


                  • #39
                    Re: Top This PR!

                    Is there anything on this thread that remotely has anything to do with track and field? (Heck, I'd settle for track OR field.)

                    Comment


                    • #40
                      Re: Top This PR!

                      Yes: Run to work. Work to pay taxes. Tax money to transit that none of us uses. Debates surround this fact. Energy level increases. Muscles get tense. At some point in the day work ends. We run back home.

                      Comment


                      • #41
                        Re: Top This PR!

                        No Name says he ws jesting in calling for price controls but then says the Carter price controls were a disaster. My question: What price controls? I have no recollection of any under Carter. Am I a victim of incipient alzheimers?

                        I haven't really thought about price controls one way or the other, but it is arguable that they did work during WWII. Severe shortqages of consumer goods during the war yet very little inflation. Of course after the War, when controls were lifted, there was considerable short-term inflation - followed by very low inflation in the '50s.

                        What does irk me about the "magic of the market" is how the oil companies boost their profit margins at the expense of everyone else. I don't begrudge them a profit, but why kick us when we're down. Besides, they don't believe in the free market except as it allows them to price-gouge - but give them a shot at gov't subsidies of any kind and they are the first pigs at the trough.

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                        • #42
                          Re: Top This PR!

                          >No Name says he ws jesting in calling for price controls but then says the
                          >Carter price controls were a disaster. My question: What price controls? I
                          >have no recollection of any under Carter. Am I a victim of incipient
                          >alzheimers?

                          I guess. Nixon(where do you think we got the idea up here) brought them in and so did Carter. Carter's were a reporting and paperwork nightmare basically.

                          Comment


                          • #43
                            Re: Top This PR!

                            What does irk me about the
                            >"magic of the market" is how the oil companies boost their profit margins at
                            >the expense of everyone else. I don't begrudge them a profit, but why kick us
                            >when we're down. Besides, they don't believe in the free market except as it
                            >allows them to price-gouge - but give them a shot at gov't subsidies of any
                            >kind and they are the first pigs at the trough.

                            What are you talking about here? When referring to the "oil industry", you are referring to both upstream and downstream companies both of which have very significant boom and bust cycles which(less so now) are dependent on something over which they have no control(OPEC). If you don't like the fact that your elected representatives are offering the industries subsidies to meet whatever industry goals that they have decided are important, vote them out. A corporation would be negligent vis-a-vis the shareholders not to take advantage of them. And you certainly can't blame them for charging whatever the market will bear. That's their function.

                            Comment


                            • #44
                              Re: Top This PR!

                              You're both part right. If I remember correctly, crude oil price controls were introduced by Nixon and retained by Ford and Carter. There's no indication No Name intended to spin his comment to avoid attaching blame equally to Republicans and Democrats, although that's a tactic that's been tried--especially laughable since Nixon's total package of wage/price controls was far more comprehensive than what the Carter administration left in place.

                              >No Name says he was jesting in calling for price controls but then says the
                              >Carter price controls were a disaster. My question: What price controls? I
                              >have no recollection of any under Carter. Am I a victim of incipient
                              >alzheimers?



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                              • #45
                                Re: Top This PR!

                                > Tax money to transit that none of us uses.

                                Don't be so sure. I take transit to and from work everyday (adds all of 15 or so minutes each way to a pretty consistent 50 - 55 minute commute) during which I can read, nap or stare at the backup of cars inching along the highway (to say nothing of trying to get off the highway). Get a 10 minute shake out walk to wake up in the morning and another 10 minutes in the afternoon to warmup before heading out for a run (just to get in the track content).

                                While I do have a car, I am pretty comparable to Ben in terms of when I last filled up and how much is left in the tank.

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