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Old Posted Sep 9, 2019, 6:01 AM
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Nouvellecosse Nouvellecosse is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Nova Scotia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SFBruin View Post
Because if we really needed good transit systems in the short term, we would vote for them.

There won't be political pressure for good mass transit systems in the US until gas costs $8/gallon.
Unfortunately that's not how these things work. Like, at all. People need health coverage, but there are millions of people who are uninsured in the US. People need safety but there's been little to no progress on gun regulation. Surely you must be familiar with the famous study showing Political decisions aren't based on need, they're based on the policy approach of particular parties and politicians. Sometimes because decisions involve pitting the will of one group of voters against another (for instance, suburban/rural vs urban, rich vs poor, etc.) or because of the influence of lobbyist and special interests (NRA, pharmaceutical industry, insurance providers, farmers, etc.) This article discusses the topic in more detail.

If gas prices were to rise, people may respond in a variety of ways depending on the conditions they're presented with. They may start buying electric or more fuels efficient cars, may use transit more often, or may live closer to work pushing up real estate prices in certain areas. The options they choose will be greatly influenced by government policies. Just like they are now. What, if any, influence their choices have on government policy is uncertain, but what is certain is that it has little relation to market dynamics. As you already pointed out, there is already significant demand for transit in NYC. It's probably already as impractical now for the majority of people to get around there by car as it would be in Dallas with $8 gas prices. Yet the lack of political pressure sufficient to secure new funding proves that political decisions don't work that way.
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