Thursday, October 16, 2008

Green's uncosted transport policy

Well so you may think, the Greens have launched a transport plan for Auckland without a single cost for construction, let alone any (undoubted) subsidies for ongoing operations. Like a bunch of 13 year olds doing a project.

So the tooth fairy might fund it, because the Greens don’t give a damn about costs. Benefits? No. The Greens haven’t evaluated the proposal, you don’t get to see how many minutes travel time you might save, how much emissions will reduce, even how much it would cost to ride this gold plated transport system. I don't mean exact economic appraisal, but some ballpark so that it can be rebutted.

No – the Greens just say that you’ll get less congestion, cleaner air, “healthier lifestyles” (you’ll walk more) and a rather sinister “more room on the roads for essential travel” (they know when your travel is essential and when it is trivial – the petty fascists that they are).

How can they possibly be taken seriously on this? Like I’ve said time and time again, it is religious worshipping of rail. However they’ve outdone themselves this time. Some blatant mistakes:
- Funding will shift from ratepayers to government, reducing the burden on ratepayers (but no mention of taxpayers);
- The Waterview connection of SH20 is mentioned for scrapping, except their own map indicates a motorway on that route – for buses. What’s that about?;
- “BRT (bus rapid transit) is much faster and cheaper to build than rail” they say, which begs the question, why are you obsessed with rail?
- Funding that goes to Transit New Zealand for motorways would go to ARTA they say, except Transit New Zealand was abolished by legislation the Greens supported. Are motorways to not be maintained??

Don’t forget, since 1999 the Greens have worked closely with Labour on transport policy. You might think that since transport matters to the Greens they may bother costing and evaluating their policies. No. Like I’ve said before, it’s the Green religion – railways good, cars and trucks bad, don’t ask any questions, just write out the cheque. I mean cheques, because by no stretch of the imagine will people riding this flash new public transport system be paying the full costs of operating it.

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