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Re: [carfree_cities] Talking Points: The huge subsidy for driving

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  • mtneuman@juno.com
    Hi Jerome. It s great to hear from an honest to good lurker, even if it might just be every now and then. I myself find it practically impossible to lurk on
    Message 1 of 8 , Sep 3, 2003
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      Hi Jerome. It's great to hear from an honest to good lurker, even if it
      might just be every now and then. I myself find it practically
      impossible to lurk on list, although I don't really mind if others do..
      I just must be impatient, I guess.

      FYI, I posted a reference on the subsidies given to automobile drivers a
      month or two ago after I had just join the carfree_cities listserv group.
      I'm posting the same information below, but in a slightly different
      format to make it more readable.

      There is no question about the fact that car drivers don't pay but a tiny
      fraction of the their total economic, public health, social and
      environmental costs they inflict. Federal taxes collected now run less
      than 30 cents per gallon of gasoline burned in an auto. The ICTA
      estimates the gross total cost to be over $15.00 per gallon of gas burned
      up in auto driving. Your initial suspicions were correct. I can see why
      you let the matter go that night, however. But with this information,
      you will have no reason not to respond with both barrels the next time.
      =========

      From: The Real Price of Gasoline, ICTA, 1998

      AUTO DRIVING SUBSIDIES

      Federal tax subsidy: $8.9 billion; total state tax subsidies: $123 -
      $323 million

      Subsidies for oil extraction & production subsidies, research &
      development, export financing: $115 billion.
      Subsidies for federal oversight, pollution cleanup and liability costs:
      $1.6 billion.
      U.S. military spending to guard world's petroleum resources $55 - $96
      billion**
      Un-reimbursed social costs, including pollutions and congestion: $558
      billion***

      Grand Subsidy Total: $1.69 trillion/year, or $15.14 per gallon

      * All amounts are in terms of annual subsidies.
      ** Exclude cost of going to war. Much higher now.
      *** Excludes loss of life costs and cost associated with global warming.

      http://www.icta.org/ctanews/realpr.htm

      Earlier post: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/carfree_cities/message/6077

      Mike Neuman
      http://www.geocities.com/mtneuman/tribute_flag.html
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ClimateArchive/message/229



      "If you live within walking or bicycling distance of work, you can reduce
      the global warming impact of your commute to zero."
      Denis Hayes, http://www.rambles.net/hayes_earthday.html


      On Wed, 03 Sep 2003 19:45:38 +0000 "Coast 2 Coast"
      <coast2coast2@...> writes:
      > Hi All from Jerome in Tucson, Arizona, USA.
      >
      > I'm mostly a lurker on this an other car-free bulletin boards. I've
      > been
      > car-free and ped-centric for about 8 years.
      >
      > Recently turpin had a provocative post regarding "the huge subsudy
      > for
      > driving."
      > Is anyone aware of a site where this idea is fleshed out a bit more,
      > perhaps
      > in the form of talking points, or a strategy to engage other
      > citizens?
      >
      > My reason for this is quite practical:
      >
      > Recently I met a husband/wife couple of what appeared to be mellow,
      > utilitarian cyclists pedaling cross town in my direction. We started
      >
      > chatting about our various cycling habits, shared a few favorite
      > scenic
      > routes, short-cuts etc. I was feeling like I had made two new
      > friends.
      >
      > Then out of nowhere came the following comment from one of my
      > interlocuters:
      >
      > "I think we cyclists need to move over and give priority to the
      > motorists,
      > since they're the ones who are paying for the roads with their fuel
      > taxes,
      > unlike us, who are riding for free..."
      >
      > Needless to say, I was dumbfounded by this remark, such that I
      > didn't even
      > know what to say. I thought for a moment that this was an attempt at
      > irony.
      > I've heard comments like this from angry cagers, but never from what
      >
      > appreared to be evolved, reflective folks.
      >
      > Alas, it was near the end of our conversation, and both of us had to
      > get on
      > our ways, so I didn't say anything to the cyclists. Instead I rolled
      > my
      > tongue back into my mouth, picked my chin up from the kerb, and
      > wished them
      > good cycling.
      >
      > But if I ever happen upon either of them again, I would like to be
      > ready and
      > have an enlightened conversation. Any suggestions for how I might
      > respectfully revisit this comment?
      >
      > Regards,
      >
      > Jerome
      >
      > _________________________________________________________________
      > Help protect your PC: Get a free online virus scan at McAfee.com.
      > http://clinic.mcafee.com/clinic/ibuy/campaign.asp?cid=3963
      >
      >
      > To Post a message, send it to: carfree_cities@...
      > To Unsubscribe, send a blank message to:
      > carfree_cities-unsubscribe@...
      > Group address: http://www.egroups.com/group/carfree_cities/
      >
      > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
      > http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
      >
      >
      >


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    • dubluth
      An error we should avoid is the counting congestion costs as a subsidy to driving. If I am correct, the congestion cost estimate used to arrive at a figure
      Message 2 of 8 , Sep 5, 2003
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        An error we should avoid is the counting congestion costs as a subsidy
        to driving. If I am correct, the congestion cost estimate used to
        arrive at a figure cited below is based on the time that drivers are
        delayed by congested roads. Because the negative effect of congestion
        is spread across drivers, there is more driving than there would be if
        each driver felt the full cost to _other drivers_ of their decision.
        On this list, we would generally agree that more driving means more
        harm. When there is more driving than is efficient from the
        motorist's point of view, there is more harm. Still, costs to
        motorists aren't a motoring subsidy.

        Bill Carr

        --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, mtneuman@j... wrote:
        > Hi Jerome. It's great to hear from an honest to good lurker, even
        if it
        > might just be every now and then. I myself find it practically
        > impossible to lurk on list, although I don't really mind if others
        do..
        > I just must be impatient, I guess.
        >
        > FYI, I posted a reference on the subsidies given to automobile
        drivers a
        > month or two ago after I had just join the carfree_cities listserv
        group.
        > I'm posting the same information below, but in a slightly different
        > format to make it more readable.
        >
        > There is no question about the fact that car drivers don't pay but a
        tiny
        > fraction of the their total economic, public health, social and
        > environmental costs they inflict. Federal taxes collected now run
        less
        > than 30 cents per gallon of gasoline burned in an auto. The ICTA
        > estimates the gross total cost to be over $15.00 per gallon of gas
        burned
        > up in auto driving. Your initial suspicions were correct. I can
        see why
        > you let the matter go that night, however. But with this
        information,
        > you will have no reason not to respond with both barrels the next
        time.
        > =========
        >
        > From: The Real Price of Gasoline, ICTA, 1998
        >
        > AUTO DRIVING SUBSIDIES
        >
        > Federal tax subsidy: $8.9 billion; total state tax subsidies: $123
        -
        > $323 million
        >
        > Subsidies for oil extraction & production subsidies, research &
        > development, export financing: $115 billion.
        > Subsidies for federal oversight, pollution cleanup and liability
        costs:
        > $1.6 billion.
        > U.S. military spending to guard world's petroleum resources $55 -
        $96
        > billion**
        > Un-reimbursed social costs, including pollutions and congestion:
        $558
        > billion***
        >
        > Grand Subsidy Total: $1.69 trillion/year, or $15.14 per gallon
        >
        > * All amounts are in terms of annual subsidies.
        > ** Exclude cost of going to war. Much higher now.
        > *** Excludes loss of life costs and cost associated with global
        warming.
        >
        > http://www.icta.org/ctanews/realpr.htm
        >
        > Earlier post: http://groups.yahoo
        com/group/carfree_cities/message/6077
        >
        > Mike Neuman
        > http://www.geocities.com/mtneuman/tribute_flag.html
        > http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ClimateArchive/message/229
        >
        >
        >
      • J.H. Crawford
        There is one subtle way in which congestion is a cost to society. Trucks making deliveries that are stuck in traffic cause the cost of goods (for everyone) to
        Message 3 of 8 , Sep 6, 2003
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          There is one subtle way in which congestion is a cost to society.
          Trucks making deliveries that are stuck in traffic cause the cost
          of goods (for everyone) to rise. Otherwise, I agree with the
          statement below.

          >An error we should avoid is the counting congestion costs as a subsidy
          >to driving. If I am correct, the congestion cost estimate used to
          >arrive at a figure cited below is based on the time that drivers are
          >delayed by congested roads. Because the negative effect of congestion
          >is spread across drivers, there is more driving than there would be if
          >each driver felt the full cost to _other drivers_ of their decision.
          >On this list, we would generally agree that more driving means more
          >harm. When there is more driving than is efficient from the
          >motorist's point of view, there is more harm. Still, costs to
          >motorists aren't a motoring subsidy.
          >
          >Bill Carr
          >
          >--- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, mtneuman@j... wrote:
          >> Hi Jerome. It's great to hear from an honest to good lurker, even
          >if it
          >> might just be every now and then. I myself find it practically
          >> impossible to lurk on list, although I don't really mind if others
          >do..
          >> I just must be impatient, I guess.
          >>
          >> FYI, I posted a reference on the subsidies given to automobile
          >drivers a
          >> month or two ago after I had just join the carfree_cities listserv
          >group.
          >> I'm posting the same information below, but in a slightly different
          >> format to make it more readable.
          >>
          >> There is no question about the fact that car drivers don't pay but a
          >tiny
          >> fraction of the their total economic, public health, social and
          >> environmental costs they inflict. Federal taxes collected now run
          >less
          >> than 30 cents per gallon of gasoline burned in an auto. The ICTA
          >> estimates the gross total cost to be over $15.00 per gallon of gas
          >burned
          >> up in auto driving. Your initial suspicions were correct. I can
          >see why
          >> you let the matter go that night, however. But with this
          >information,
          >> you will have no reason not to respond with both barrels the next
          >time.
          >> =========
          >>
          >> From: The Real Price of Gasoline, ICTA, 1998
          >>
          >> AUTO DRIVING SUBSIDIES
          >>
          >> Federal tax subsidy: $8.9 billion; total state tax subsidies: $123
          >-
          >> $323 million
          >>
          >> Subsidies for oil extraction & production subsidies, research &
          >> development, export financing: $115 billion.
          >> Subsidies for federal oversight, pollution cleanup and liability
          >costs:
          >> $1.6 billion.
          >> U.S. military spending to guard world's petroleum resources $55 -
          >$96
          >> billion**
          >> Un-reimbursed social costs, including pollutions and congestion:
          >$558
          >> billion***
          >>
          >> Grand Subsidy Total: $1.69 trillion/year, or $15.14 per gallon
          >>
          >> * All amounts are in terms of annual subsidies.
          >> ** Exclude cost of going to war. Much higher now.
          >> *** Excludes loss of life costs and cost associated with global
          >warming.
          >>
          >> http://www.icta.org/ctanews/realpr.htm
          >>
          >> Earlier post: http://groups.yahoo
          >com/group/carfree_cities/message/6077
          >>
          >> Mike Neuman
          >> http://www.geocities.com/mtneuman/tribute_flag.html
          >> http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ClimateArchive/message/229
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >
          >
          >
          >To Post a message, send it to: carfree_cities@...
          >To Unsubscribe, send a blank message to: carfree_cities-unsubscribe@...
          >Group address: http://www.egroups.com/group/carfree_cities/
          >
          >Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
          >
          >
          >

          -- ### --

          J.H. Crawford Carfree Cities
          mailbox@... http://www.carfree.com
        • mtneuman@juno.com
          Aren t the drivers who are stuck in traffic part of society? Assuming so, then their costs associated with waiting in traffic should be included as a cost to
          Message 4 of 8 , Sep 6, 2003
          • 0 Attachment
            Aren't the drivers who are stuck in traffic part of society? Assuming
            so, then their costs associated with waiting in traffic should be
            included as a cost to society of driving, shouldn't they?

            On Sat, 06 Sep 2003 07:05:14 +0000 "J.H. Crawford" <mailbox@...>
            writes:
            >
            > There is one subtle way in which congestion is a cost to society.
            > Trucks making deliveries that are stuck in traffic cause the cost
            > of goods (for everyone) to rise. Otherwise, I agree with the
            > statement below.
            >
            > >An error we should avoid is the counting congestion costs as a
            > subsidy
            > >to driving. If I am correct, the congestion cost estimate used to
            > >arrive at a figure cited below is based on the time that drivers
            > are
            > >delayed by congested roads. Because the negative effect of
            > congestion
            > >is spread across drivers, there is more driving than there would be
            > if
            > >each driver felt the full cost to _other drivers_ of their
            > decision.
            > >On this list, we would generally agree that more driving means more
            >
            > >harm. When there is more driving than is efficient from the
            > >motorist's point of view, there is more harm. Still, costs to
            > >motorists aren't a motoring subsidy.
            > >
            > >Bill Carr
            > >
            > >--- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, mtneuman@j... wrote:
            > >> Hi Jerome. It's great to hear from an honest to good lurker,
            > even
            > >if it
            > >> might just be every now and then. I myself find it practically
            > >> impossible to lurk on list, although I don't really mind if
            > others
            > >do..
            > >> I just must be impatient, I guess.
            > >>
            > >> FYI, I posted a reference on the subsidies given to automobile
            > >drivers a
            > >> month or two ago after I had just join the carfree_cities
            > listserv
            > >group.
            > >> I'm posting the same information below, but in a slightly
            > different
            > >> format to make it more readable.
            > >>
            > >> There is no question about the fact that car drivers don't pay
            > but a
            > >tiny
            > >> fraction of the their total economic, public health, social and
            > >> environmental costs they inflict. Federal taxes collected now
            > run
            > >less
            > >> than 30 cents per gallon of gasoline burned in an auto. The ICTA
            > >> estimates the gross total cost to be over $15.00 per gallon of
            > gas
            > >burned
            > >> up in auto driving. Your initial suspicions were correct. I can
            >
            > >see why
            > >> you let the matter go that night, however. But with this
            > >information,
            > >> you will have no reason not to respond with both barrels the next
            >
            > >time.
            > >> =========
            > >>
            > >> From: The Real Price of Gasoline, ICTA, 1998
            > >>
            > >> AUTO DRIVING SUBSIDIES
            > >>
            > >> Federal tax subsidy: $8.9 billion; total state tax subsidies:
            > $123
            > >-
            > >> $323 million
            > >>
            > >> Subsidies for oil extraction & production subsidies, research &
            > >> development, export financing: $115 billion.
            > >> Subsidies for federal oversight, pollution cleanup and liability
            > >costs:
            > >> $1.6 billion.
            > >> U.S. military spending to guard world's petroleum resources $55 -
            >
            > >$96
            > >> billion**
            > >> Un-reimbursed social costs, including pollutions and congestion:
            > >$558
            > >> billion***
            > >>
            > >> Grand Subsidy Total: $1.69 trillion/year, or $15.14 per gallon
            > >>
            > >> * All amounts are in terms of annual subsidies.
            > >> ** Exclude cost of going to war. Much higher now.
            > >> *** Excludes loss of life costs and cost associated with global
            > >warming.
            > >>
            > >> http://www.icta.org/ctanews/realpr.htm
            > >>
            > >> Earlier post: http://groups.yahoo
            > >com/group/carfree_cities/message/6077
            > >>
            > >> Mike Neuman
            > >> http://www.geocities.com/mtneuman/tribute_flag.html
            > >> http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ClimateArchive/message/229
            > >>
            > >>
            > >>
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > >To Post a message, send it to: carfree_cities@...
            > >To Unsubscribe, send a blank message to:
            > carfree_cities-unsubscribe@...
            > >Group address: http://www.egroups.com/group/carfree_cities/
            > >
            > >Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
            > http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
            > >
            > >
            > >
            >
            > -- ###
            > --
            >
            > J.H. Crawford Carfree
            > Cities
            > mailbox@...
            > http://www.carfree.com
            >
            >
            > To Post a message, send it to: carfree_cities@...
            > To Unsubscribe, send a blank message to:
            > carfree_cities-unsubscribe@...
            > Group address: http://www.egroups.com/group/carfree_cities/
            >
            > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
            > http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
            >
            >
            >


            ________________________________________________________________
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          • Richard Risemberg
            Yes, but the drivers themselves are apying a price in that same incovenience, so it s a wash. If you try to back up your arguments with that particular
            Message 5 of 8 , Sep 6, 2003
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              Yes, but the drivers themselves are "apying" a price in that same
              incovenience, so it's a wash.

              If you try to back up your arguments with that particular point, you'll
              lose people and they won't listen to the much bigger points.
              Specifically, I'd suggest sticking to the cost in public--ie,
              tax--money, since car drivers are the biggest welfare queens around, and
              since the right is always trying to defund alternatives such as
              bicycling, walking, rail, etc, in favor of cars and commercial air.

              Show how the suburbs require huge infusions of cash from city dwellers
              to live their chosen pseudo-independent lifestyle. It's not just roads
              and maintenance but cops, emergency services, pollution cleanup, lost
              tax base to roads and parking lots and street parking, services
              extensions to spread-out areas that have to make room for driving (a
              hundred feet of sewer pipe in my neighborhood services about 80 people
              who live on property that is highly-valued and pays a lot of taxes; a
              hundred feet of sewer pipe in the suburbs services six people who live
              on property that is assessed at a low value and pays little taxes, but
              the pipe costs the same to build, maintain, and run--and then there's
              the long long pipe reaching out to it from the city...etc.).

              Richard

              mtneuman@... wrote:

              > Aren't the drivers who are stuck in traffic part of society? Assuming
              > so, then their costs associated with waiting in traffic should be
              > included as a cost to society of driving, shouldn't they?
              >
              > On Sat, 06 Sep 2003 07:05:14 +0000 "J.H. Crawford" <mailbox@...>
              > writes:
              >
              >>There is one subtle way in which congestion is a cost to society.
              >>Trucks making deliveries that are stuck in traffic cause the cost
              >>of goods (for everyone) to rise. Otherwise, I agree with the
              >>statement below.
              >>
              >>
              >>>An error we should avoid is the counting congestion costs as a
              >>
              >>subsidy
              >>
              >>>to driving. If I am correct, the congestion cost estimate used to
              >>>arrive at a figure cited below is based on the time that drivers
              >>
              >>are
              >>
              >>>delayed by congested roads. Because the negative effect of
              >>
              >>congestion
              >>
              >>>is spread across drivers, there is more driving than there would be
              >>
              >>if
              >>
              >>>each driver felt the full cost to _other drivers_ of their
              >>
              >>decision.
              >>
              >>>On this list, we would generally agree that more driving means more
              >>
              >>>harm. When there is more driving than is efficient from the
              >>>motorist's point of view, there is more harm. Still, costs to
              >>>motorists aren't a motoring subsidy.
              >>>
              >>>Bill Carr
              >>>
              >>>--- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, mtneuman@j... wrote:
              >>>
              >>>>Hi Jerome. It's great to hear from an honest to good lurker,
              >>
              >>even
              >>
              >>>if it
              >>>
              >>>>might just be every now and then. I myself find it practically
              >>>>impossible to lurk on list, although I don't really mind if
              >>
              >>others
              >>
              >>>do..
              >>>
              >>>>I just must be impatient, I guess.
              >>>>
              >>>>FYI, I posted a reference on the subsidies given to automobile
              >>>
              >>>drivers a
              >>>
              >>>>month or two ago after I had just join the carfree_cities
              >>
              >>listserv
              >>
              >>>group.
              >>>
              >>>> I'm posting the same information below, but in a slightly
              >>
              >>different
              >>
              >>>>format to make it more readable.
              >>>>
              >>>>There is no question about the fact that car drivers don't pay
              >>
              >>but a
              >>
              >>>tiny
              >>>
              >>>>fraction of the their total economic, public health, social and
              >>>>environmental costs they inflict. Federal taxes collected now
              >>
              >>run
              >>
              >>>less
              >>>
              >>>>than 30 cents per gallon of gasoline burned in an auto. The ICTA
              >>>>estimates the gross total cost to be over $15.00 per gallon of
              >>
              >>gas
              >>
              >>>burned
              >>>
              >>>>up in auto driving. Your initial suspicions were correct. I can
              >>
              >>>see why
              >>>
              >>>>you let the matter go that night, however. But with this
              >>>
              >>>information,
              >>>
              >>>>you will have no reason not to respond with both barrels the next
              >>
              >>>time.
              >>>
              >>>>=========
              >>>>
              >>>>From: The Real Price of Gasoline, ICTA, 1998
              >>>>
              >>>>AUTO DRIVING SUBSIDIES
              >>>>
              >>>>Federal tax subsidy: $8.9 billion; total state tax subsidies:
              >>
              >>$123
              >>
              >>>-
              >>>
              >>>>$323 million
              >>>>
              >>>>Subsidies for oil extraction & production subsidies, research &
              >>>>development, export financing: $115 billion.
              >>>>Subsidies for federal oversight, pollution cleanup and liability
              >>>
              >>>costs:
              >>>
              >>>>$1.6 billion.
              >>>>U.S. military spending to guard world's petroleum resources $55 -
              >>
              >>>$96
              >>>
              >>>>billion**
              >>>>Un-reimbursed social costs, including pollutions and congestion:
              >>>
              >>>$558
              >>>
              >>>>billion***
              >>>>
              >>>>Grand Subsidy Total: $1.69 trillion/year, or $15.14 per gallon
              >>>>
              >>>>* All amounts are in terms of annual subsidies.
              >>>>** Exclude cost of going to war. Much higher now.
              >>>>*** Excludes loss of life costs and cost associated with global
              >>>
              >>>warming.
              >>>
              >>>>http://www.icta.org/ctanews/realpr.htm
              >>>>
              >>>>Earlier post: http://groups.yahoo
              >>>
              >>>com/group/carfree_cities/message/6077
              >>>
              >>>>Mike Neuman
              >>>>http://www.geocities.com/mtneuman/tribute_flag.html
              >>>>http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ClimateArchive/message/229
              >>>>
              >>>>
              >>>>
              >>>
              >>>
              >>>
              >>>To Post a message, send it to: carfree_cities@...
              >>>To Unsubscribe, send a blank message to:
              >>
              >>carfree_cities-unsubscribe@...
              >>
              >>>Group address: http://www.egroups.com/group/carfree_cities/
              >>>
              >>>Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
              >>
              >>http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
              >>
              >>>
              >>>
              >>-- ###
              >>--
              >>
              >>J.H. Crawford Carfree
              >>Cities
              >>mailbox@...
              >>http://www.carfree.com
              >>
              >>
              >>To Post a message, send it to: carfree_cities@...
              >>To Unsubscribe, send a blank message to:
              >>carfree_cities-unsubscribe@...
              >>Group address: http://www.egroups.com/group/carfree_cities/
              >>
              >>Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
              >>http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
              >>
              >>
              >>
              >
              >
              >
              > ________________________________________________________________
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              > Surf the web up to FIVE TIMES FASTER!
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              >
              > To Post a message, send it to: carfree_cities@...
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              >
              >

              --
              Richard Risemberg
              http://www.living-room.org
              http://www.newcolonist.com

              "I believe that every right implies a responsibility; every opportunity,
              an obligation; every possession, a duty."
              John D. Rockefeller, Jr.
            • mtneuman@juno.com
              Okay. The drivers know that with the driving comes the risk that they will have to waste time (and money perhaps) in a traffic jam. I can buy that that is
              Message 6 of 8 , Sep 6, 2003
              • 0 Attachment
                Okay. The drivers know that with the driving comes the risk that they
                will have to waste time (and money perhaps) in a traffic jam. I can buy
                that that is not therefore a cost of driving.

                When you list the real costs of driving, be sure to mention the costs of
                air pollution from motor vehicles, loss of wildlife habitat, agricultural
                land and other uses of land that are laid over by highways, excavation of
                sand and gravel (for building and resurfacing highways), noise, global
                warming, oil spill in the oceans (from ships carrying the oil to market
                for making gasoline), petroleum refining "costs", losses of the land and
                nonrenewable resources (oil) associated with oil drilling, losses of
                resources (mining) in auto production, losses in safety for pedestrians
                and bicyclists. I think those are the big ones, but there could be more
                of them listed, to be sure.

                On Sat, 06 Sep 2003 08:29:52 -0700 Richard Risemberg
                <rickrise@...> writes:
                > Yes, but the drivers themselves are "apying" a price in that same
                > incovenience, so it's a wash.

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              • Jym Dyer
                ... =v= As suburbs age and these water and sewage lines come up for overhaul, this is starting to become a *huge* issue. Those with the economic means are
                Message 7 of 8 , Sep 6, 2003
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                  > ... a hundred feet of sewer pipe in the suburbs services six
                  > people who live on property that is assessed at a low value
                  > and pays little taxes, but the pipe costs the same to build,
                  > maintain, and run--and then there's the long long pipe
                  > reaching out to it from the city...etc.).

                  =v= As suburbs age and these water and sewage lines come up
                  for overhaul, this is starting to become a *huge* issue. Those
                  with the economic means are taking "white flight" to another
                  level, either picking up and moving to newer suburbs, or back
                  into the city, regentrifying it. Both directions enjoy some
                  subsidies, in the name of "economic incentive."

                  =v= The folks squeezed out of the cities are now in the older
                  suburbs. When the results of the Year 2000 U.S. Census were
                  compiled and made public, newspapers heralded this demographic
                  shift as minorities finally getting their share of the American
                  Dream. In reality, they're facing higher costs for overhauling
                  suburban infrastructure *and* higher car costs.

                  =v= This is just one aspect of the overall staggering subsidy
                  for cars, but it illustrates the nature of this subsidy: so
                  often hidden, and a real mess once you take a good look at it.
                  In this case it's also worsening income and racial divisions
                  in the U.S. -- the very effect Ivan Illich honed in on back
                  in the early 1970s.
                  <_Jym_>
                • dubluth
                  The time and any extra money spent either in traffic or on open roads are costs of driving, presuming these things have value to the drivers. Some confusion
                  Message 8 of 8 , Sep 6, 2003
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                    The time and any extra money spent either in traffic or on open roads
                    are costs of driving, presuming these things have value to the
                    drivers. Some confusion has resulted because of our varied
                    understanding of concepts and terminology.

                    Refering to my dictionary a subsidy is "a direct financial aid,
                    especially by a government". I think that to many people it may also
                    have the more general meaning of a one sided transfer from one group,
                    such as taxpayers, to another, such as a farmers (a subset of
                    taxpayers).

                    I was thinking of subsidy in this more generic sense since it puts
                    into laymans' terms the notion of people absorbing (often unwillingly)
                    the costs of an activity undertaken by some others. Such generic
                    subsidies make the activity relatively encouraged just as would direct
                    financial aid. Externalities like pollution's effects fall into that
                    broader conceptualization.

                    The congestion costs were both generated and absorbed by drivers,
                    therefore it isn't a subsidy _to driving_. It is one of the costs of
                    driving, but one paid by drivers as they sit behind the wheel.

                    All costs picked up by non-motoring public are important. We might
                    not choose to call them subsidies, but they are costs, whose
                    importance we wish to communicate.

                    BTW, thanks taking the trouble to compile some numbers for that
                    effort.

                    Bill Carr

                    --- In carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, mtneuman@j... wrote:
                    > Okay. The drivers know that with the driving comes the risk that
                    they
                    > will have to waste time (and money perhaps) in a traffic jam. I can
                    buy
                    > that that is not therefore a cost of driving.
                    >
                    > When you list the real costs of driving, be sure to mention the
                    costs of
                    > air pollution from motor vehicles, loss of wildlife habitat,
                    agricultural
                    > land and other uses of land that are laid over by highways,
                    excavation of
                    > sand and gravel (for building and resurfacing highways), noise,
                    global
                    > warming, oil spill in the oceans (from ships carrying the oil to
                    market
                    > for making gasoline), petroleum refining "costs", losses of the land
                    and
                    > nonrenewable resources (oil) associated with oil drilling, losses of
                    > resources (mining) in auto production, losses in safety for
                    pedestrians
                    > and bicyclists. I think those are the big ones, but there could be
                    more
                    > of them listed, to be sure.
                    >
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