Tuesday, November 16, 2004

California Drivers Punished Incentivized

Well, Arnie's finally done it. He's finally shown his true Kennedy family allegiance by appointing a tax and spend Democrat to the head of this state's worst bureaucratic nightmare. Joan Borucki, a longtime official with CalTrans ("Keeping Our Highways Unusable For Your Own Good") sees a way to pour more money into CalTrans' coffers and, at the same time, punish those idiots who clog her highways every day with their cars.

Borucki first makes the ludicrous claim that she wants to transform the Department of Motor Vehicles into a "customer-friendly, service-oriented unit of our government." Well, more power to her. It's already less popular than the Franchise Tax Board, so it can only get better from here, theoretically.

Making bad news worse is Borucki's innovative new idea: Instead of making Californians pay $.18 per gallon at the pump (which is supposed to encourage us to buy fuel-efficient hybrid vehicles), Borucki wants to put devices in our cars that tell Big Brother Ms. Borucki just how many miles we're driving on her precious highways. Better yet, those same devices will tell Big Brother Ms. Borucki which roads we're driving on at which times so she can levy higher taxes on those hard working individuals who just want to get home as quickly as possible to spend some (so far) non-taxable time with their families.

Hey, I think that's a terrific idea. All in favor?

[Unanimous support from state transportation experts and budget analysts]


[Every driver in the state of California]

Hmm. Perhaps we didn't explain the benefits of this tax-and-spend proposal. Did we mention that those of you idiots who insist on purchasing hybrid and fuel-efficient vehicles are taking money away from critical highway repairs? Well, here's how you can atone for your greed and avarice. You'll have the peace of mind that comes from knowing that Big Brother Ms. Borucki is watching your every move, and will tax you for it. Brother, you just can't buy that kind of security today.

Still not convinced? Neither am I.

Three years ago my company transferred me to another location. I moved from moderately expensive Ventura County to ultra-expensive Orange County. I insisted on moving to a home within a reasonable driving radius from my new work location. When we found one that was only five miles from the office, we were thrilled. I could drive to and from work in ten minutes or less, give or take traffic. One year later, the company transferred me to another location some twenty two miles away from home. So, under Borucki's plan, I would be punished twice: Once when the company increased my commute time, plus wear and tear on my vehicles. A second time because I would have to pay that much more in taxes because my commute miles effectively quadrupled. Plus I have to use freeways now unless I want to take forty-five minutes to travel the twenty-two miles from home to office, so that means a higher tax rate under this proposal.

And if that isn't incentive enough, don't forget the penalty you'll get to pay when you dare to take a vacation and have to use Big Brother Ms. Borucki's highways! Welcome to California! Pay up and leave!

What a benefit! I can't wait for this woman's confirmation hearings.

I plan to wear black.

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