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Don't Let The Door Hit You...

CNN's Campbell Brown's words ring true in relation to this pantload, whom the media never bothered to fact-check on anything:

Brown spoke of the "false equivalency" that's often practiced in journalism. "Our view is that when Candidate A says it's raining outside, and Candidate B says it's sunny, a journalist should be able to look outside and say, 'Well it's sunny, so one of these guys is wrong,'" she told Stewart.

Guess what? Sal Costello was wrong on almost everything he ever said. But you wouldn't know that for reading the Statesman, or the Chronicle, or even Burnt Orange Report - and the transportation discourse has suffered drastically for it. Instead of flat-out telling their readers that Costello's position wasn't true, they, at best, alluded to it indirectly, assuming people would get it. They didn't. As a result, people now honestly believe his bullshit about being double-taxed and the money supposedly diverted to 'toll roads' from 'free'ways.

In this whole process, one might assume the losers are suburban motorists. Not so; the losers are central city Austin residents, both drivers and non-drivers, who have to continue the unfair process of paying for suburban commuters' highways through both the gas tax subsidy and the property tax and sales tax subsidy. With toll roads, at least suburban commuters would have paid something closer to the cost of their choice to live out there. Now? Back to business-as-usual, meaning people who ride the bus in East Austin get to subsidize people driving in from Circle C. My environmentalist friends who think this means "no roads" are deluded - the phase II toll roads weren't highways to nowhere like Southwest Parkway; there already exists sufficient commuting demand and more than enough political support to make these roads happen, whether 'free' or tolled.

Anyways, to our erstwhile Circle C Crackpot: don't let the door hit you. And shame on you, reporters. It was raining the whole time, and you let people think there was an honest disagreement on the weather.

(The worst part? As I mentioned to a facebook friend, he actually made me feel a little bit sorry at one point for this guy. UNCLEAN).

This entry was posted in the following categories: Austin , Don't Hurt Us Mr. Krusee, We'll Do Whatever You Want , Driving in Austin , Funding of Transportation , Republicans Hate Poor People , Republicans Hate Public Transportation , Republicans Hate The Environment , Subsidies to Suburban Sprawl , Transportation , Worst Person In Austin

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Comments

Great post as usual!

If you never leave Austin (like me), and shop and live in the central areas of our city, you never have to pay a toll. :)

On this you and I couldn't agree more. I'm still embarrassed that I believed anything he said for a while. Luckily I got better

Mike, a few facts:

1. There still has been no expansion of 290SW or 45SW. This is not all due to Sal's activism, but certainly the 2004 delay of what looked to be a fast-tracked process helped greatly.

2. The highways that are being built after several years of delay (183-A, 290E to come) are still toll roads, not "free" roads so I don't see what us center-city folk are losing out on.

3. The delay on the SW roads has bought us enough time so that: Gerald Daugherty was booted out of office, a financial collapse made it unlikely that the SW roads will be built in the next 5 years, and we bought/acquired development rights for nearly 5,000 acres of land near and around the area, including a parcel this week that fronts the proposed 45 SW.

I never agreed with Sal's reasoning, but sometimes the enemy of your enemy is your friend. Mike, sometimes you can be way too pure for your own good!

Facts don't support the theory.

1. 290SW is going to happen. It wasn't going to happen this quickly even as a toll road. 45SW was really a separate deal from "phase II".

2. 183-A wasn't part of Phase II. Neither was 290E.

3. It also 'bought' us the toll revenue from 183-A paying for 290E rather than being reserved for local improvements (possibly improving transit). It also 'bought' us the east-siders paying tolls while the west-siders don't.

Sal is a pantload; and if anybody's being too pure for their own good, it's the SOS folks who don't realize they don't have 95% of the population's support for never expanding 290 (and before you start: the 6-lane parkway would be worse for the environment, all things considered, than would the 12-lane tollway).

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