Thursday, July 17, 2014

The Collectivist Highway Trust Fund

William Thomas of the Atlas Society has an interesting article discussing the many problems with the federal government's Highway Trust Fund.  Thomas argues that there are, essentially, two main problems with the HTF, the first of which is its underlying collectivist philosophy:
It’s simple justice that the people who use the roads should pay for the roads. And it’s simple justice that they shouldn’t have to pay for bus riders and train passengers’ commutes: transit riders should pay for their own services.
Yet since 1982, the federal government has been sucking more and more funds out of the highway trust fund to pay for transit. Behind this pillaging are two immoral and pernicious ideas.
The first nasty idea is plain old collectivism: it holds that (somehow) the motorists and the transit riders are the same people in the same respect: all part of the collective. “People in both parties ride in cars or take trains and buses,” notes the Times: so it doesn’t matter that the motorists are being robbed. Since we are all part of the collective, anyone can be taxed to pay for anyone else’s benefits.
Click here to read the second problem as well as other insightful observations about this topic.  Thomas's article also has several embedded links to interesting, related areas that are definitely worth your time to explore as well.