Where Hath My Seasons Gone?

Last week, the nights were in the twenties. A few days later, eight inches of rain in forty eight hours. Massive flooding. Tomorrow, 85 degrees.

Where has my spring gone?

And, in another sign of the narrow-minded moronicism of the times, Mayor Bloomberg proposed an $8 congestion tax on city drivers entering Manhattan below 86th street between 6 am and 6 pm on weekdays (never mind that the worst cases of exhaust-related asthma are found in Harlem). This is perhaps the stupidest thing I have ever heard. Really, this will only serve to unnecessarily punish the low income drivers and small businesses who heavily utilize trucking and transport into and out of the city. It will force people who drive through the city to consume more gasoline when they have to drive around it. A better solution might be to convert the city’s 13,000 taxi cabs and 5000 buses to hybrid and/or electric motors. Hey, there’s a start. I don’t care what Tony Blair says. New Yorkers cannot afford this tax.

3 Replies to “Where Hath My Seasons Gone?”

  1. Really? I love the idea of the car tax. I think it would do wonders to finally force people to think of other ways to get into, out of, and around the city. It would be 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. so those trucks can come in outside of those hours, which is when they should be making deliveries anyway.

    I sit on a bus every morning in the traffic at the Lincoln Tunnel, and the vast majority of that traffic is made up of cars with only one person in them. Anyone that can afford to drive into the city on a daily basis can afford that tax, and if they can’t, then they should get on the bus or train with the rest of us.

    I agree that hybrid buses and cabs are a great idea, but it has to be paid for. This tax could pay for those upgrades.

  2. On first blush, it makes sense, but my cousin drives in every day to pick up his kids from school They’re 7 and 4 and cannot take the subway by themselves. The alternative is, what, to take three trains in (it’s no easy commute from Brooklyn) and walk a quarter mile to the school every day? (Both ways.)

    My problem is that I see government passing the burdens of global warming onto the consumer, but in many ways it’s the lax government standards (auto emissions, plant emissions, etc.) which brought us to this point.

    I would love fewer cars in Manhattan, but not if the tax burden is passed onto the classes which can least afford it. That’s an extra $2000 a year you are asking working families to pay.

  3. I agree that the large corporations and the government are to blame for most of what has transpired, but that does not absolve the rest of us who have let it happen and done nothing to curtail our own bad habits. I’d argue that your cousin does NOT have to drive in every day. Why can’t they leave earlier and do that train/bus/walking trip? Why not have the kids go to school closer to home? Inconvenience is why.

    EVERYONE has to make a sacrifice if anything is to be done. For us to say “let the corporations and the government do it” is no better than them saying “let the common man do it and leave us alone”. You can’t condemn Chevy for making SUV’s that get horrible mileage and then give a pass to the mom who “needs” to buy that SUV because it’s safer for her kids. It has to change across the board for everyone or we’ll get nowhere fast.

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