Saturday, December 27, 2008

Ending traffic congestion with GPS tracking and confiscation of wealth

"New global positioning system technology and congestion pricing can reduce traffic jams. In mid-January, 10,000 transportation professionals, including people from the incoming Obama administration, will convene in Washington D.C. at meetings of the Transportation Research Board, part of the National Science Foundation, to discuss solutions ...

"London’s system of road pricing, with cars charged $16 to enter the center, is held up as a model for other cities. But its main flaw is that drivers pay flat fees, and are not charged by miles driven or by routes taken.

"A better scheme would be to have drivers pay per mile, with higher charges on more heavily-used streets and in periods of heaviest congestion ...

"Here’s how this could work. GPS devices could be given to drivers who choose to participate—one per car—and drivers pay as easily as they are now paying for cell phones or E-ZPass tolls. Participating motorists could be exempt from license-renewal fees, but would pay road charges instead, charges that could vary by type of road used and time of day. Driving in rush hour along a busy road would cost more than driving on a little-used road late at night."
I could not make this up. Once again the increased surveillance and higher taxes are sugar-coated as solutions to a common problem: Few people enjoy sitting in traffic jams. And oh, yes, it's a "voluntary" system for "drivers who choose to participate," but there will be a costly penalty for "choosing" not to participate.

Will most folks trade in their freedom and their cash for the promise of less-congested roads and highways? Maybe. Freedom is so inconvenient.

Read Big Brother's argument.



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