|Ok, maybe this is too light (rail).|
Some days you just have to shake your head.
So Iowahawk had a tweet that I and some others latched on to. Started out like so:
Now what this is in reference to is the myriad of city governments that desperately want to shove light rail down our throats. I can attest to that here in Kansas City, a town that straddles a state line and has tons of arteries going to downtown and around the city. I435 is a loop that runs no less than 80 miles around the entire city.
There is a bus system in place and it works but here, most people have cars. Yes, even poor people. Transportation is not a pressing issue. As for light rail, it's anything but when it comes to cost. Amtrak is bleeding money. Most light rail systems need tons of subsidies to keep afloat. Not to mention the accidents that happen.
Liberals seem to think that every city should emulate New York for some reason, a city with minimal land area and built from the ground up on an intricate subway system. Message to liberals: Other cities have different geographical challenges.
Of course the cost is a drain on the taxpayers, who liberals seem to think are the golden goose they can kill and get the eggs out of all at once. 10 trillion and counting in debt would argue against that kind of sustainability. Eventually you run out of other people's money. Spending several billion on a system that then requires more billions to keep going year after year for a subset of the population that could never afford to pay the ticket daily without the subsidies is inefficient in the extreme.
Of course these simpletons never believe that there is any other way, the poor need light rail and you hate the poor. As shown in these tweets:
I had to have fun of course.
But like most libs, they have no sense of humor.
I tried talking slower.
Oh wait, I thought we were talking about light rail?
So I did a little research and math. Watch the liberal scurry away.
I posit that the left don't give a rat's posterior about the poor. Let me ask you what's more useful, a car or a light rail car? You don't have to work around your car's schedule. You don't have to worry about getting accosted in a car. You don't have to have to get a ride to get to where you can get into your car. You don't have to walk another two miles from where you need to go because your car won't go the last mile (or two.) I bet it would be better for the poor to have a car than to have a bus or light rail. Especially in a city that is spread out over a state line where I would have to change cars when I got there.
So let's forget the absolute drain on taxpayers (who pay money to businesses and get paid so they can actually power the economy) light rail is. Let's just see how much money would have to be spent.
So let's look at what the Government considers poor:
2014 POVERTY GUIDELINES FOR THE 48 CONTIGUOUS STATES
AND THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA
|Persons in family/household||Poverty guideline|
|For families/households with more than 8 persons, add $4,060 for each additional person.|
So for simplification purposes, let take all people making 19,790 or less and consider them "poor." According to the stats
, there are approximately 15% of people that are considered "poor." That's about 46.5 million. (A number that has gone up significantly since the great spending spree has begun with Barack Obama by the way but I digress.)
Now if you remove those under 18, that leaves about 30 million in "poverty" according to the census. Given that many are married, indigent, already have a car, etc, my numbers came up to about 10 million that really could use a car. I also am not certain how many they consider poor that might be illegal immigrants.
A decent car, not a Lexus but dependable, should cost around 10k. In bulk, the government could work with used lots and manufacturers to make that happen.
10,000,000 * 10k = 100 billion. That's a lot.
Now a take a look at this:
The cost of recent surface light rail lines has ranged from a low of $43 million per mile in Norfolk, VA to a high of $204 million per mile for the new Milwaukie line in Portland. Los Angeles's Crenshaw Line , which includes short subway sections, clocks in at $165 million per mile. In Toronto, the Eglinton LRT line, which consists of almost a 50/50 split between surface and subway operation, is estimated to cost C$403 million per mile, which as of May 2012 was about equal to US$400 million per mile. In contrast, the Canada Line in Vancouver, which is about 70% underground with most of the rest being elevated, only cost C$177 million per mile - a low amount attributed to its cut-and-cover construction and very short station platforms (at 50m they can only accommodate two car train sets).
So how many miles of light rail are wanted/in place? In 2014 they want to put in 743 miles across various urban areas.
They project a total cost of outlays for the new projects at 81.4 billion. This does not include the various operating costs for existing operations that are running. These run into the billions a year across the US. None of this has increased ridership and poor planning and the inability to cheaply make changes to these lines have made them unwieldy in the face of changing demographics in commuters:
Based on the decisions to build these projects, which were made by hundreds of local officials and often endorsed by residents through referenda, you might think that the experience building light rail in the 1980s had been unambiguously successful. Yet it doesn't take much digging to find that over the past thirty years, these initial five systems in themselves neither rescued the center cities of their respective regions nor resulted in higher transit use — the dual goals of those first-generation lines.
According to an analysis of Census data, in four of the five cities with new light rail lines, the share of regional workers choosing to ride transit to work declined, and the center city's share of the urbanized area population declined, too. San Jose was the only exception, seeing a quarter of a percentage increase in the percentage of workers using transit and a 6 percentage point increase in its center city's share of the urbanized area.
So wouldn't just giving people a car have better results? They would have better access to jobs. We could save the light costs and put it into roads which cost anywhere from 1.8 to 4 million a mile to maintain/expand, significantly cheaper. We can get tax revenue from the extra gas that gets sold. We've handed them a freedom they don't have with light rail. We give them housing, why not cars?
Of course I'm not advocating either. Giving away things always results in abuse. But my point is that Mr. Lefty up there doesn't have any answers or even thinks about doing this. He only wants to point out how much he hates the other side. He also wants to boil down the argument to "lol u GOP hate poor lolz!!!11eleven!!1!!!"
The less cities, states, and feds are pulling money out of our pockets, the more we have to spend and make ourselves NOT poor. That breeds innovation and maybe we can build our own better and cheaper rail systems. Or something no one has thought of yet. Point is, we can more efficiently help the poor by helping the economy and I'm hard pressed to see how this is it. But if I don't want to just mindless spend tax dollars on stuff that liberals like, I hate poor people. No more to see here, no more argument necessary.
I'm not certain liberals really care about poor people. Giving a car away would be a lot better for them than light rail. It never crosses their mind. Why? Cause agenda! That's why!