Tag Archives: construction

Congestion: Hell On Wheels – Part II

Drew Carey has some ideas on how to improve transportation. One of them includes naming a freeway after himself. How? Just buy it.

Reason.tv host Drew Carey examines the costs and consequences of traffic jams and explores several solutions that can get our roads moving. How does a speedy trip on the “Drew Carey Freeway” sound? Plus, one lucky commuter gets a helicopter ride to work, courtesy of Drew.

So if we go. Click here to watch

Along a similar veign… 

While roads and the highway system will never be completely privatized, what will become of gas tax receipts? The taxes were levied to pay for road maintenance and construction. Today, they are increasingly used to supplement non-transportation projects such as health care, welfare, etc.

When the burden of road maintenance and construction on public entities are reduced, are drivers going to apathetically acquiesce to the diversion of transportation dollars to non-transportation causes simply because gas taxes have always been charged?

Of course, it could be a non-issue because we might all have electric vehicles by that time. Not likely though.

Southern California Wildfires

Stay up-to-date on the wildfires in Southern California here and here with interactive and constantly-updated maps.

**EDIT by Matthew**

I’m going to reset this to the top and ask this question:

We’re going to see calls for the government to pay for the reconstruction of these areas. Just as those who live in the southeast know they live in risk of damage from hurricanes those who live in these areas know that there is a significant risk of fire destroying their property.

What is the government’s responsibility, if any, to people displaced and financially damaged by these fires?

Green Gas

Tom McClintock, a great man from California, has spoken truth. Excerpts follow:

You have extended me a very dangerous invitation tonight – to speak to a gathering of political conservatives on the day that Al Gore has received the Nobel Peace Prize for discovering that the earth’s climate is changing.

(I)ndulgences will be used for such activities as planting more trees to absorb carbon dioxide. After all, young trees absorb an enormous amount of this “greenhouse gas” – far more than old trees. But isn’t replacing old-growth timber with young-growth timber what lumber companies used to do until the radical environmentalists shut them down?

(T)here are only two ways of generating vast amounts of clean electricity: hydroelectricity and nuclear power. But there’s no faster way to send one of these Luddites into hysterics than to mention that inconvenient truth.

(A)t Al Gore’s rally to save the planet in New York in July, no less an authority than Robert F. Kennedy Jr. said that those of us who still have some questions over their theories of man-made global warming are “liars,” “crooks,” “corporate toadies,” “flat-earthers” and then he made this remarkable statement: “This is treason and we need to start treating them now as traitors.”

Ah, the dispassionate language of science and reason.

I got to high school in the 1970’s and learned from the Al Gores of the time that we foolish mortals were plunging ourselves into another ice age. All the scientists agreed.

I believe it was Ogden Nash who wrote:

“The ass was born in March
“The rains came in November
“Such a flood as this, he said,
“I scarcely can remember.”

(W)hen the global warming alarmists predict worldwide starvation, they’re right. They’re creating it.

(R)adical laws now in place in California are having a dramatic impact on energy production, agriculture, manufacturing, wine-making and construction, just to name a few sectors of our economy.

In normal times, citizens don’t pay a lot of attention to public policy, and that’s why democracies occasionally drift off course. But when a crisis approaches, that’s when you see democracy engage. One by one, citizens sense the approach of a common danger and they rise to the occasion. They focus – they look beyond the symbols and rhetoric – and they begin to make very good decisions. Political majorities can shift very quickly in such times. Polls can reverse themselves almost overnight in such times. And I believe that day is now rapidly approaching.

People ask me all the time: “What can I do?” And the only answer I can offer is the answer the great abolition leader Frederick Douglass offered to a young protégé. He said, “Agitate. Agitate. Agitate.”

The Good, The Bad, The Ugly, And The Relative

The Good:

Justice Clarence Thomas has been in the news recently because of a book he has written, a memoir of his life heretofore. He’s making the rounds of radio and TV talk shows and Rush and Hannity, Miller and others are uniform in their approbation of his story. And it is not just conservatives enjoying the narrative of this amazing life. Deborah Douglas of the Chicago Sun-Times, a self-described liberal who believes Anita Hill’s story regarding sexual assault by Thomas, has a few wise words of support and agreement with the aims of Thomas’ life:

…my elders always said, “You may not respect the person, but you have to respect his position.”

Thomas strikes me as trying hard to envision the day when race doesn’t matter, and he offers a strict approach to the Constitution that backs that up. He’s a firm believer in a meritocracy, which becomes devalued when clout, patronage and nepotism persistently usurp it.

The problem is that so many people feel that day is so far away, they can’t take a chance on a guy whose misplaced colorblindness could undo years of racial progress. A man who has tried so hard to flee the burden of race has found, perhaps, that burden is inescapable.

Compare this with the New York Times’ printing of a article by Prof. Anita Hill, one-time subordinate of then Mr. Thomas, in which she continues to maintain the veracity of her story against the oft-reviled Justice. For further enjoyment read the Letters to the Editor regarding Hill’s editorial.

The Bad:

Close to home, in Oak Park, IL a school thinks it can prevent walkway roadblocks and last-minute dashes to class by outlawing “group hugs” at the school. Umm… does this even need commentary?

What about punishing lateness to class. Not allowing ‘lip’ to teachers. Teaching academics instead of the worthless garbage required by so much state and federal oversight and union hand-tying. Creating an environment where learning is the method and creating intelligent, functioning humans is the goal.

Good friends of mine teach at a private school where there are few, if any, field trips, and the students learn classical Greek and Latin as regular parts of their curriculum. When asked when they get to have fun the students themselves respond that learning IS the fun.

Reading the article it seems as though assault and molestation seem to be part of the problem. There is not a right to education, if the person decides they would rather be bringing bombs or molesting others or anything which prevents others from getting the education they are trying to get, kick them out, and send their parents to school instead where they might learn how they need to challenge, lead, and discipline their children before sending them to school.

There are plenty of remedial education options for those who find they really need to learn what they thought they didn’t need to know earlier.

The Ugly:

Dad’s abdicating their responsibility in the home. Living a life of half-way fatherhood, being “men” when others are around and being craven power-whores when they don’t think others see. Yelling at wives and children, psychologically abusing those they’ve sworn to honor, cherish, serve and protect. Psychological abuse is as harmful, if not more so, than physical abuse. Scars on the skin fade with time, scars in the heart only heal with mercy, grace, and forgiveness.

Yes, that’s all I have to say.

The Relative:

Dawn Eden, author of “The Thrill Of The Chaste”, a book on the better way of chastity in today’s unchaste world, debated Virginia Vitzthum, author of “I Love You, Lets Meet”, a book on hooking up through personals ads. In response to a question from the audience regarding why Dawn feels as though she needs to “evangelize” Dawn answers that she is speaking from the position of one hurt by the lifestyle and now speaking against it to protect others. Virginia begins her response calling Dawn “sincere” as though she were some little child, but worse than the haughty snub is the relativist thought that what is right for Dawn isn’t right for everybody else.

One of the most pernicious lies of out time is that of relativism. Humans are relative in that we perceive things relative to other things. Darkness is the absence of light, cold feels more pervasive and “cold” when we’ve just come out of a warm shower, listening to loud noises and we have trouble hearing a whisper we could’ve heard without problem prior. Standards are not relative. Humans invent some standards, such as for gaging temperature, noise, and light, in order to empirically relate different things. But just as the pot has no control over the wheel which spins it and has no say with the potter in its construction, there are standards which govern humans and which brook no relativist comparison. One is either right or wrong (we as humans, being inside the system, often do not have the faculty for judging right and wrong accurately, we cannot measure motive, and therefore must rightfully leave such judgment to the one who created both the human and the standard), good or evil, pure or impure.