It's a Sprawl World After All?

Russell Turpin deafbox at
Tue Oct 28 10:05:51 PST 2003

C. C. Kraemer:
>When Jefferson said it was sinful to compel a man to pay for something he 
>didn't support, he was speaking in the context of religious freedom. But 
>his conviction applies in the Ann Arbor case and all others like it. The 
>anti-sprawl movement is not a ecognized religion, but its zealous 
>who worship at a green altar, have made it into one.

I wonder if Kraemer equally condemns the use of city
and property taxes to pay for the roads that enable
sprawl? Road subsidies are a major part of state and
city budgets, in amounts that dwarf by orders of
magnitude what cities and states pay to purchase
green space.

That's not to defend Ann Arbor's expenditure. Buying
greenspace to limit sprawl is like buying orange
juice to prevent a hangover.

Liberals and conservatives today are equally impotent
to address sprawl and our transportation system.
Sprawl is a direct result of massively subsidized
roads. To speak the language of conservatives: we
have socialized the roads. The cure is to make
transporation systems pay for themselves, and to
remove the roads from city and state budgets.

The left is blind to this. They don't like sprawl,
but they are hard put to see its origin in government
subsidy. They lack the language to discuss the issue
intelligently. So they resort to stupid tactics such
as Mayor Hiefje's. But hangovers aren't the result
of too little orange juice.

Where the left is blind, the right is hypocritical.
The right won't acknowledge the massive subsidy
behind it, because the right loves sprawl. It's a sin
for the government to spend $50 million for a little
greenspace, but obligatory the government to spend
billions to give commuters open road for their SUVs.

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