The Met Council has devolved from a regional infrastructure planning board, to a social engineering utopian’s dream where happy thoughts and totalitarian socialist theory thrives, and common sense, practical solutions, and fact based logic are deemed evil.
Every day, I like millions of other Minnesotans, sit in a see of tail lights from a transportation system that is decades behind, yet we see million dollar buses and billion dollar trains racing past us with more empty seats than occupied ones. Yet planners continue to divert money from roads and bridges to “transit”.
There have been 3 significant tax increases or adjustments that were dedicated to transportation in the last 10 years in Minnesota. But the impacts can only be seen, not felt.
In 2006, the MVST Amendment was passed thanks to Tim Pawlenty’s Vote Yes arm. This was the one that took an existing tax on vehicle sales and funneled “At least 60% to transit and no more than 40% to roads and bridges”. It was supposed to be all we needed to fix things.
In 2008, Tim Pawlenty’s veto of a gas tax hike was overridden with the help of 8 Republicans in the House and Senate. Democrats and their special interest groups who stood to benefit used the 35W bridge collapse to bully and intimidate Legislators and public opinion that this would also solve everything.
Also in 2008, the Legislature overrode the Constitution to allow Metro Counties to increase their local sales tax with out voter approval. Five of the 7 Counties did so, including my own Anoka County. (Which oddly has not repealed the tax increases despite having flipped the board’s political majority). This increased sales tax is used almost exclusively for mass transit.
During this same time, billions have gone in to commuter and light rail projects no one really needed, but a handful of social engineers really wanted. They aim to control people’s lives. They aim to remove choice from our daily lives. They hate the fact that 95% of Minnesotans don’t NEED them and their trains and their buses. They hate the fact that we can and will do what we want, go where we want, when we want and how we want to. Because, they know what is best for us. Its all about control.
Let me remind you again, our state highways and bridges are decades behind in design, capacity, and are in dangerously in neglect. A bridge I drive on or under every single day is being held up by wood.
Billions of money have been spent over the last decade on transit. Some through direct visible tax increases and the construction of choo choo trains, but the social engineers have also been spending at will behind the scenes discarding perfectly good conventional diesel buses for new hybrid or clean diesel buses. All those park and ride expansions across the metro, and planning for BRT Bus Rapid Transit have all siphoned off perfectly good money that could have been used to repair bridges and expand clogged up highways.
But nope, the social engineers have determined cars are ‘so 20th Century’ and the future runs right back through the 19th Century or something. Rail and hamster habitat buses. Yes, that is our future in the vast and expanding metro area. A centralized urban hub that rejects market forces, and removes choice.
The head of the Metropolitan Council supports a half-cent sales tax hike in the seven-county metro to help fund transportation needs.
Met Council Chair Susan Haigh says the increase would help fund much-needed transportation needs as the State struggles to keep up with transportation demands. Haigh, and other transportation officials, say the gas tax is not enough to keep transportation projects properly funded over the next several decades.
This all comes at a time when the Met Council is expanding bus rapid transit (BRT) across the Twin Cities.
It is maddening to have unelected bureaucrats with zero accountability propose tax increases for the sole purpose of pleasing their Orwellian dreams which are neither based in reality or the Constitution. Every damn day I am forced to drive through bottlenecks and on crumbling bridges, all the while dodging half empty buses racing up the shoulders like maniacs.
I frequently pass by boondoggles like the Hiawatha LRT & Northstar Commuter rail. Failed experiments only propped up by hundreds of millions in operating subsidies. Traffic is worse from these to projects, and the next version of rats in the maze MNDOT/Met Council is building – Central Corridor – has destroyed a historic artery that used to connect Minneapolis and St. Paul downtowns.
I am taxed, I am regulated, but I am not being served. Its infuriating. Its depressing. Its unAmerican.
I am being ruled over by my Government, whether elected or not. Its almost like the redcoats won and someone from a different society and country and continent is deciding what is best for me and all against my will.