FHWA: Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) "marriage between commerce & public need"

Benito Mussolini once said that fascism is the marriage of the corporation with the State. Well, Jim Rey of the Federal Highway Administration essentially admitted this is the Bush Administration’s transportation policy in a nutshell. He said these PPPs to fund widespread toll roads is the “marriage between commerce (private entity) and a public need.”

See this article that compares “state capitalism” with socialism. Rey addressed the Trans Texas Corridor Advisory Committee today, and shared a boatload of other policy initiatives cloaked in a cheerleading session about aggressively pursuing the private sector to “solve” our transportation & congestion “crisis” by taking over our infrastructure.

He also stated “every time America has needed a solution, the private sector delivered.” Sounds an awful lot like “state capitalism” doesn’t it? Rey claimed “the days are numbered for the gas tax” claiming it will become obsolete, while also contradicting himself saying they’re using a hybrid model of gas taxes and tolls to fund infrastructure. First of all, even if every car in America switched to a new alternative fuel, guess what? Congress would be certain to tax it! Remember Reagan’s famous quote: “[G]overnment’s view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.” See article on the taxing of alt fuels here.


Rey also said the problem with the gas tax is that it “allows” people to access their roads (these are the taxpayers roads, remember) freely, without concern for congestion or peak travel models. He opined that 40% of those on the road in peak hours are making discretionary trips, not going to work. While all of this may be true and can be a cause of congestion, we don’t need BIG Daddy government coming in and charging us all a “congestion tax” to control when and how we access our PUBLIC highways! Congestion is a deterrent in and of itself. Most people can change the the time they travel or take a different route if they don’t want to sit in traffic. We should be encouraging employers to allow such flexibility and even telecommuting rather than hold commuters hostage to a foreign company or impose prohibitive taxes to go to work.

He overlooked (two advisory board members brought these issues up as causes of congestion) then minimized two things that EVERY department of transportation can do right now TODAY with little or no cost to vastly improve congestion without selling off our infrastructure to private companies: implement an “incident management” program (to clear traffic accidents quickly) and mitigate the effects of highway construction (TxDOT projects can take years; they don’t maximize traffic flow during construction, etc.). In fact, the FHWA’s own stats show that the TOP 3 reaons for congestion have NOTHING to do with the amount of cars on the road. They are weather, accidents, and ROAD CONSTRUCTION.

We’ve pointed this out for several years now, but TxDOT hasn’t done a thing to improve either. In fact, if all this private money allows them to start a glut of highway projects all at once as they say is their goal, our whole STATE will be one big ORANGE CONE!

He shared a host of such goodies…our Federal Highway Administration is aggressively pursuing a marriage between the corporation and the State. They’re taking away our freedom of movement, and this ought to wake-up EVERY American to stand up to such oppressive usurpation and STOP it! How ‘but the most simple solution of all: have government, especially TxDOT, learn to live within its means, cut the tremendous waste (Mr. Rey oversees 50 attorneys at the FHWA alone, what do we need 50 attorneys in the highway administration for? CUT THE WASTE!) and misuse of the tax dollars we already give them (like diverting it to non-transportation uses), and if anything, increase the gas tax rather than sell our infrastructure to foreign companies like third world countries do.

Please refrain from drinking such short-sighted and foolish Kool-Aid! It is hazardous to your FREEDOM!