A lot has been made of the Tea Party movement lately. Supposedly a wave of conservative resistance is about to sweep into Washington and stand up to disastrous ideas like making sure more Americans have health care coverage, and asking the rich to chip in with more taxes during tough budgetary times.
Well, if you all are so conservative, you'll love the idea of getting cars off of welfare. There are at least three major ways that cars are on welfare and it's about time we put a stop to it.
1) Cars are on welfare because they almost never pay for their own parking
That's right, parking costs something, and you almost never pay for it directly as a driver. When you go to the store, for example, the business gives it up for free and everybody pays for it in more expensive goods whether they drive to the store or not. Talk about socialism. Read The High Cost of Free Parking.
2) Cars are on welfare because gasoline taxes don't pay the full cost of road maintenance.
Don't take my word for it. USA Today covered it recently. The federal gas tax hasn't been raised since the early 1990s, even to adjust for inflation. That means general tax revenue has to pay for road repairs, or even more likely, they just don't get done.
3) Cars are on welfare because they shift costs to the environment and society.
I know you're not a big fan of the environment if you have to pay anything or use the government to protect it in any way, but hear me out. Environment also means the places where we live work and play, and you're probably inhaling car fumes right now. Are those cars compensating you for the added medical bills you will face as a result of dirty air? Are they paying to clean up the beaches that are soiled by oily runoff? Are they paying real compensation for the tens of thousands of people who die in collisions every year, who after all are both Republicans, Libertarians, Democrats, Greens, Unaffiliated, etc.?
Why no. They aren't. That means SOMEBODY ELSE is paying.
It's time to get cars off of welfare.