Tea Party demands repeal of transit-funding law

Debbie Dooley, national coordinator of the Tea Party Patriots, stood in the rotunda at the state Capitol last week and brandished a piece of paper for the TV cameras.

The paper contained a pledge, signed by Gov. Nathan Deal back when he was campaigning for office, in which Deal promised the taxpayers of Georgia that he “will oppose and veto any and all efforts to increase taxes.”

So Dooley had a question: How can the governor square a pledge to oppose “any and all efforts to increase taxes” with his statements urging voters to approve a regional one-penny sales tax to raise money for transportation? Isn’t it pretty obvious that by offering such support, Deal violates his public commitment?

As she noted, other Republican leaders — Senate Majority Leader Chip Rogers, Senate President Tommie Williams, House Speaker David Ralston — have signed a similar no-tax pledge sponsored by Americans for Tax Reform, a Washington-based pressure group.

If they intend to honor that pledge, Dooley argued, Deal and his colleagues not only must speak out against voter approval of the sales-tax referendums scheduled for this summer. They must cancel the referendums altogether by repealing the law that put them on the calendar. And if they don’t, the Tea Party movement will throw its energy and organization skills into defeating those measures at the ballot box.

David Pennington, the mayor of Dalton, followed Dooley to the podium. Standing before a portrait of James Oglethorpe, the founder of Georgia, Pennington argued strongly that the regional approach to transportation funding should be abandoned as unnecessary.

“We already have one of the best ports in the country, the best system of interstates, the best airport and a great system of universities,” Pennington said, ticking off a list of Georgia’s strengths. Given those advantages, all we need to launch another economic boom is comprehensive tax reform and a continued commitment to avoid any tax increases.

However, while listening to Pennington rattle off his list of all the things right with Georgia, I had some questions of my own:

How did the Port of Savannah — a subsidiary of the Georgia Ports Authority — happen to develop into one of the busiest, most efficient ports in the country? The short answer is, through the investment of hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer money. In fact, the governor has proposed selling $46.7 million in state bonds this year to further deepen and expand the port. He is also seeking hundreds of millions of dollars in federal aid for the project.

How did the interstate highway system lauded by Pennington happen to get built, if not by taxpayers? And what would Dalton’s renowned carpet industry be without the access to world markets offered by I-75, which runs right through the mayor’s town?

Yes, Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is the world’s busiest airport and also one of its most efficient, generating an annual economic impact of roughly $20 billion. But it too was built by public investment, and this spring, a new $1.4 billion international terminal is scheduled to open at the airport, increasing the metro region’s access to global markets.

Finally, who built and continues to fund the university system lauded by Pennington as another of the pillars of the Georgia economy? Again, it has been taxpayers.

Without those investments, many of them by prior generations of Georgians, where would this state be today? And without additional investments in the future, where will we be tomorrow?

It’s telling that in his State of the State address last week, Deal proposed to address serious traffic congestion on Ga. 400 by converting existing emergency lanes to travel lanes. It probably won’t help a lot — it may even make congestion much worse at times, by making it difficult if not impossible for emergency responders to clear away accidents. But unless we take action, such jury-rigged, small-time fixes are all we have available to us.

– Jay Bookman

210 comments Add your comment

Bosch

January 18th, 2012
7:25 am

And GA is about to lose out to Charleston for port improvements because of our incompetent legislators.

Granny Godzilla

January 18th, 2012
7:28 am

Aquagirl

January 18th, 2012
7:42 am

Teanuts are content running the resources built by previous generations into the dirt without replacing them. What a bunch of freeloading welfare queens.

Why, I see them in the grocery store every day, buying filet mignon and beer with their subsidies. What nerve!

Normal

January 18th, 2012
7:42 am

“A Tea Party is for little girls with imaginary friends”. I’d tell them to stick it in their ear.

ByteMe

January 18th, 2012
7:46 am

Dooley — who I’m sure will be out here defending her position once she notices you wrote about her — is tone-deaf on this one. It’s one thing for legislators to vote to increase our taxes, quite another for voters to choose to tax themselves. She’s picking the wrong battle, likely because no one cares about the Tea Party much these days, so she’s trying to stay relevant.

Karl Marx

January 18th, 2012
7:48 am

Nice try however the transportation penny tax has nothing to do with the Port of Savannah, it will not provide anything to Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, and it will do almost nothing to elevate traffic congestion. The tax will build a recreational trail known as The Beltline and make people who will never benefit from it pay for it. It will pour more money into a transit system already getting a penny sale tax and do nothing to increase access more than what it currently has. The transit tax is a good idea if all you want is to fund pet non transportation projects for the City of Atlanta and make someone else pay for it but it will not do anything to help the surrounding counties.

Granny Godzilla

January 18th, 2012
7:53 am

Karl Marx

you silly socialist!

without a thriving Atlanta metroplex Georgia is a just the meth lab capitol of the nation that grows some peaches and peanuts.

TaxPayer

January 18th, 2012
7:54 am

Another tea party tool doing the bidding of people like the Koch crooks. She should sue the GOP for breach of contract. :lol:

stands for decibels

January 18th, 2012
7:59 am

This morning, I heard a story about how Occupy Atlanta worked to save a 100+ year old church from losing ownership of its building.

Then I read this, from Jay.

Starker differences between America’s true patriots, and Tea Party “patriots”, are hard to imagine.

Georgia Politicians are Delusional

January 18th, 2012
8:04 am

We get what we vote for! Will this state ever realize it? We are progressing backwards!!

stands for decibels

January 18th, 2012
8:05 am

The tax will build a recreational trail known as The Beltline and make people who will never benefit from it pay for it.

So, Karl, I should oppose the ship channel deepening because I am unlikely to be able to personally scuba-dive to check it out myself?

Gotta say–I liked you better when you were still dead.

Just Imagine

January 18th, 2012
8:08 am

….a man can be elected governor of Georgia even if he IS ethically challenged! Got to love Georgia voters!

Normal

January 18th, 2012
8:09 am

“Gotta say–I liked you better when you were still dead.”

OUCH! Ha, ha :lol:

Out By The Pond

January 18th, 2012
8:09 am

The Transportation Penny Sales Tax is wrong. It is only offered because the elected (bought and paid for) representatives are to timid to enact fair and equitable tax policies. I will never again vote for a regressive tax such as the one currently proposed.

Adam

January 18th, 2012
8:10 am

Those darn pledges’ll getcha ever’y time!

TaxPayer

January 18th, 2012
8:10 am

Did not poor Miss Dooley get the message regarding the Republican agenda when they tried to give the wealthiest Georgians a tax cut while hiking taxes on the rest in order to yield no net tax increase, as they pledged. She must surely be distraught.

AmVet - “A lot of so-called conservatives don’t know what the word means." ~Barry Goldwater

January 18th, 2012
8:11 am

And without additional investments in the future, where will we be tomorrow?

And there is the rub.

The fraud conservatives in the GOP have consistently demonstrated very little concern about the quality of life for their own families future. At least in tangible terms. And to say that these men have no vision is to state the obvious.

I saw a great program on that vile liberal PBS recently about the national park system, and one of the points made by an early advocate (john Muir?) was who would have the courage not just to look forward one generation, but forward seven generations?

Hell, these narcissists won’t look past this quarter’s P&L statements.

Their anti-environmentalism simply illustrates this lack of vision, which comes into play across the entire spectrum of human endeavors and challenges.

What a bunch of freeloading welfare queens.

Nope they are totally self made men. Just ask them.

JohnnyReb

January 18th, 2012
8:11 am

Karl Marx is on the money with his 7:48 and it echoes similar past posts from yours truly. And, I will state it again – I hope it fails at the ballot.

While I agree on no more taxes, my bigger concern is the project list.

Until the metro fathers start acting responsibily, for example killing the MLK center trolley, they should not be given a dime more to squander.

TaxPayer

January 18th, 2012
8:15 am

This is just a rumor but I also heard that the ethically challenged don’t concern themselves much with such things as pledges once they have served their purpose. Have they served their purpose, Miss Dooley.

Misunderstood

January 18th, 2012
8:16 am

Until the metro fathers start acting responsibily, for example killing the MLK center trolley, they should not be given a dime more to squander.

What about every legislative Georgia office being “Republican”? How does the MLK Center fit into that puzzle?

Gale

January 18th, 2012
8:24 am

When will people like Dooley realize that politicians will sign anything and promise anything to get elected. It means NOTHING!

Bag this...

January 18th, 2012
8:26 am

Meanwhile, the Atlanta economy is collapsing. But don’t worry! The Tea Party will make sure that collapse happens more quickly and is more devastating…

Normal

January 18th, 2012
8:26 am

Thomas

January 18th, 2012
8:27 am

Granny/Jay- How is Cynthia doing?

Not Scott the d***

January 18th, 2012
8:30 am

If only we could get the rural Georgians to pay their own way instead of living off the taxes generated by the Atlanta metro area.

What a bunch of welfare queens in overalls…

JohnnyReb

January 18th, 2012
8:30 am

“What about every legislative Georgia office being “Republican?”

That’s your sign – that with the exception of minority controlled voting areas, there is a clear divide on idiology, priorities, et al. The famous two Georgias.

The trolley is a waste of money that will likely create more traffic problems than it will help.

Jm

January 18th, 2012
8:31 am

TP has their heart in the right place, their brain in the wrong one

TP should argue and lobby for a reduction in either the state sales or income tax as an offset, but shouldn’t oppose the transportation referendum

retired early

January 18th, 2012
8:31 am

Maybe it would be better if the South had won the Civil War. Together with Texas they probably would become a “Mexico” like, poor sister nation.
Thanks to the “Northern Imperialist” for fighting the nonsense of “Slavery” and keeping the southern morons from tearing this country apart.
Things haven’t changed much though…just look at the modern GOP, Tea Party, i.e “conservatives” living mostly in the South’s plan for America…”starve the beast”.
Just look at the conversations on this blog…Conservatives want no investments in our country, as Jay pointed out, while “Liberals” or “Progressives” want what is best for this country, not just what’s best for Grover Norquist.

Granny Godzilla

January 18th, 2012
8:33 am

Thomas

How’s Glenn Beck doing?

Jm

January 18th, 2012
8:34 am

Dernit

Foiled by the wiki blackout already. Was looking something up and… BAM!

scrappy

January 18th, 2012
8:35 am

“Pennington argued strongly that the regional approach to transportation funding should be abandoned as unnecessary”

Considering our “leaders” refuse to do anything meaningful to help traffic congestion in and around Atlanta – I would say that the regional approach is not only the only thing we have at the moment, it is the only thing we will ever have.
Also, we the public will be voting on this sales tax, vote how you please. Groups like the Tea Party have no right to demand that our vote be quashed. Isn’t don’t tread on me thier motto? Apparently just like the GOP, they are a bunch of hypocrites. (Your not allowed to do that, unless I tell you to & benefit from it on my end, then its ok)

Bill Orvis White

January 18th, 2012
8:36 am

Socialist-Democrat dictionary:

“Investments,” “Revenue enhancements,” “Regional one-penny,” “Increase funds”

-ALL WORDS TO HIDE THE FACT THAT THESE “PROGRESSIVES” ARE RAISING ALL OF OUR TAXE$!

Public transportation is socialism, pure and simple. There once was a guy named Adolph who enjoyed rounding up masses of folks and put them on trains-that’s similar to public transportation. This country DOES NOT NEED IT! Bill White likes to tell it like it is and I’m here to say that public buses, trains, streetcars, water taxis and vans are all a waste of taxpayer dollars and a huge boondoggle. The highway system is a common sense solution to moving people with the mode of transporation that the individuals wish to use. No, I’m not crazy that the highways are publicly-funded. We should have moved to a privatized system probably going back to Communist John F. Kennedy’s tim. With those facts clearly laid out here on this lefty blog, if the honorable governor kept His word to not raise taxe$, then he ought to remain in office. If he did not keep His word, then…FIRE HIM! This is all very simple.

Amen,
Bill

ByteMe

January 18th, 2012
8:37 am

Didn’t take long for Godwin’s Law to rear up and bite Bill Orvis White in the butt.

AmVet - “A lot of so-called conservatives don’t know what the word means." ~Barry Goldwater

January 18th, 2012
8:38 am

Purity pledges.

No tax pledges.

The unmitigated gall to try and pass legislation of the forever variety.

These backroom, closed door good old boys and ethics-free pigs at the trough like our governor??? These are the men to make the tough choices and to secure our way in this brave new world???

That 8:04 says it perfectly – We are progressing backwards…

ByteMe

January 18th, 2012
8:38 am

But he is entirely un-self-aware when he says No, I’m not crazy ….

RB from Gwinnett

January 18th, 2012
8:39 am

Gee, here’s a shocker… Another post by Jay expressing his liberal support for giving more and more and more and more and more money to the government. What’s that now, 756 in the last year? Geeez… Is there no end to it?

finn mccool

January 18th, 2012
8:39 am

Excellent points

Jm

January 18th, 2012
8:40 am

TP is not powerless

But this stupid move may make them weaker both superficially and in reality

Aquagirl

January 18th, 2012
8:40 am

Bill Orvis is freaking out over water taxis? That’s one creative mind.

stands for decibels

January 18th, 2012
8:42 am

So, is the “MLK trolley” the new “midnight basketball?

Bill Orvis White

January 18th, 2012
8:42 am

@Aquagirl
I know about those public water taxis over there in Secular Europe and they’re a waste of money.
@Jm
The tea party is just getting started. WE will be stronger as the years go on. I’m warmed that all GOP candidates are hearing us.
Amen,
Bill

Serious Inquiry

January 18th, 2012
8:43 am

Can Governor Nathan Deal be recalled?

AmVet - “A lot of so-called conservatives don’t know what the word means." ~Barry Goldwater

January 18th, 2012
8:44 am

Byteme, I find it difficult to believe that people read his sixth grade level efforts.

I am surprised that our faketriot union busters in the dysfunctional GOP actually support the Tea Party.

Don’t they know that these people are inherently dangerous?

That any time ordinary, working class people organize to protect their own interests and empower themselves, this is an affront to America?

We cannot tolerate this type of engaged citizenry. Next they will be demanding participation in power.

Long live the plutocracy.

Fly-on-the-Wall

January 18th, 2012
8:45 am

I don’t understand how someone from the Tea Party can argue with the people having the right to vote a tax on themselves? That just flies in the face of all logic about their platform since this is true democracy at work.

I would like for the Tea Party here in Georgia tell us how our roads can be improved without raising more money? It’s not like the state has extra money in the budget they could just shift over if it cut taxes more in some other area.

I’m tired of single issue politics driving the discussion around the problems we have. It will take more than one solution to solve our problems and the sooner we get started the better.

(ir)Rational

January 18th, 2012
8:46 am

sfd – The MLK Trolley, while not a horrible idea, isn’t a great one either. If I remember correctly, at one point, MARTA had a dedicated bus that went along the same route the proposed trolley will follow. They closed it for lack of ridership. If MARTA closes something because it isn’t getting used – even you should recognize that means there isn’t enough demand to support it.

pcBobby

January 18th, 2012
8:48 am

@Fly-on-the-Wall
“I don’t understand how someone from the Tea Party can argue with the people having the right to vote a tax on themselves?”

You hit the head on the nail. The tea party is not qualified to be involved in the issue of public transportation. They are a collection of misinformed Medicare recipients.

(ir)Rational

January 18th, 2012
8:50 am

sfd – After looking at the link you provided for the Midnight Basketball program, yeah, don’t see them as being similar at all. Unless you’re trying to say it is such a small amount of money that it shouldn’t really matter. I’m thinking in a state and city that are as broke as Georgia and Atlanta are, any amount of wasted money should matter.

carlosgvv

January 18th, 2012
8:50 am

I havea question too. Why would any group, even a Tea Party Washington-based pressure group, believe politicians will actually honor any pledge they might sign? Don’t they know that politics and money will always find a way around any promises or pledges?

Fly-on-the-Wall

January 18th, 2012
8:55 am

Isn’t it interesting that conservatives will say ‘to make some money you’ve got to spend some money’. Most of us have heard that since childhood but somehow that has been put aside. People believe that you can just make money without having to spend any money and they want their governments to be run that way. We won’t come up with one big plan that will solve our transportation problems but we can START with some smaller plans that will build on each other to eventually solve our problems. Will it be perfect? Heck no because people planned it and there are some that only want what they can ‘take’ out of it but will it help most people? Yes and that is what we should reach for.

Our children will shake their heads when they get older because they will ask the question – How come you didn’t solve this back then when I was young and it was easier/cheaper/faster to do? Low taxes, oh thanks Dad but I can’t drive across town to spend any money you saved me. Thanks for nothing, which is exactly what we’re giving future generations – NOTHING.

Aquagirl

January 18th, 2012
8:55 am

Another post by Jay expressing his liberal support for giving more and more and more and more and more money to the government.

Maybe Jay thinks we should pay for services we use. It’s wonderful to see Teanuts opposing such dangerous thinking, isn’t it?

Unless Ms. Dooley left the press conference via teleportation, she’s just another pig at the gub’mint teat. Cuddle up to her, RB, Gwinnett has a long, proud history of leeching off Atlanta so you’re upholding a fine tradition.

St Simons - we're on Island time

January 18th, 2012
8:56 am

I feel so sorry for the people that are not going to be a
part of the progressive future in the New Age. I really do.

Jerome Horwitz

January 18th, 2012
8:58 am

BOW should quit smelling his pipe dope. It will make him looney. Ooops, too late

ByteMe

January 18th, 2012
8:58 am

Whining about the tax because of one or two stupid projects is just sour grapes. It took nearly a year to come up with the list, each municipality involved had numerous opportunities to hear from citizens. If your voice wasn’t heard, you either weren’t paying attention or you don’t live in the place where the project is taking place, so you’re just whining about how other people spend the revenue they’re getting from the tax.

You want a valid complaint about the tax, focus on the myriad overlapping (and often competing) transit agencies supposedly managing a “regional” solution. Complain about how MARTA is supposed to be a key part of a regional solution, but only Dekalb/Fulton pay extra for it instead of the entire region.

But to focus on one or two projects that the local government deems necessary? Each government was promised a specific share of the revenues to spend as they thought best, so your complaints about specific projects are too little (in blog comments? seriously??) and too late.

Normal

January 18th, 2012
8:59 am

“the progressive future in the New Age”…

and every Conservative Christian just fainted… :)

(ir)Rational

January 18th, 2012
9:00 am

As for the broad issue, well, yeah, why should anyone believe a politician would keep their promise? History and common sense say they won’t. To the people saying that we don’t need to do anything, or don’t need to address issues with transit in the Atlanta Metro area, I would say you’re delusional and deceiving yourself. But that is the problem, and it has already been pointed out. The list of transit projects that are proposed in this bill don’t do enough to solve Metro Atlanta’s transit problems. Many of them are focused on the City of Atlanta itself, while, last I checked roughly 90% of the population lived outside the city limits. They’re proposing spending millions of dollars to connect MARTA rail with Cumberland Mall. It has been shown, and studied that there is a rail line that connects Downtown with Acworth that the state could use for the cost of a few trains and stations. Already runs through downtown Vinings, Smyrna, Marietta, Kennesaw and Acworth. I actually think it goes even farther north, I’m assuming to Cartersville and beyond, but I don’t know for sure. This would allow mass transit to start running from the busy suburbs in Cobb County in a year or two, instead of maybe in 10, and would probably relieve a lot of the commuter traffic from I-75. Why couldn’t that be one of the projects? I think the issue that many people have with the projects and tax is that it doesn’t necessarily look at the smartest ideas, and it doesn’t do enough for the areas outside the city.

mm

January 18th, 2012
9:00 am

Repugs only refuse to raise the obvious taxes, such as property and income. All other tax increases are fair game. And when caught, they call them fees.

ByteMe

January 18th, 2012
9:03 am

It has been shown, and studied that there is a rail line that connects Downtown with Acworth that the state could use for the cost of a few trains and stations

Pretty sure the cost is more than that. The negotiations with the rail owners (NSX?) goes like this: you want to use the rail line we constructed? Ok, that’s fine. You can do that, but we get immunity from ALL liability related to that rail line — even if we use it or fail to maintain it — and you pay us this money and you get to use it. The liability waiver is key. We’ve seen this movie before… they get that and they stop doing basic maintenance on the rail line and wait for it to fail and it leaves the taxpayers on the hook for the liability.

(ir)Rational

January 18th, 2012
9:03 am

ByteMe – Okay, so the rest of Metro Atlanta should pay for MARTA too. Exactly where else, besides Fulton and Dekalb does it currently go? Nowhere you say? So why should the people outside Fulton and Dekalb pay for it? I would love to hear an answer for this other than “because that would be fair” or some other drivel like that.

(ir)Rational

January 18th, 2012
9:04 am

ByteMe – There are two lines. The articles I’ve read about it said the state owned one of those two.

gadem

January 18th, 2012
9:06 am

It is sad that some don’t understand that taxes are needed. I would argue with the mayor of Dalton that the interstates are the best. The morning commutes are horrendous because the interstates can not handle the volume (also people can’t drive). All taxes are not bad taxes. Some people have been brainwashed into thinking that all taxes are Evil…poor lost souls

(ir)Rational

January 18th, 2012
9:06 am

Oh, and just for informational purposes, hoping it doesn’t come off sounding to douchey, CSX runs trains into Cobb County up that line and NSF runs them on the same line that Amtrak uses, which goes to DC, so I’m assuming it follows 85.

Jm

January 18th, 2012
9:07 am

If it Atlanta doesn’t unjam itself, it won’t rake 189th among cities(from ajc article), it will rank last. (pretty much already does)

(ir)Rational

January 18th, 2012
9:08 am

NFS – cause NSF translates into Norfolk Southern, stupid me. :(

Jm

January 18th, 2012
9:09 am

Rake = rank

Phooey

pcBobby

January 18th, 2012
9:09 am

@BOW
Dude, I know you’re more pro-Israel than most Jewish folks, but really, public transporation brings up Holocaust images in your head? That’s a stretch, dude. Well, you at least bring something fresh to the tea party, because their act is quite stale. Indeed, Ms. Dooley is making herself completely irrelevant on this issue. How about Ms. Dooley and company expand beyond taxes and fight for the little guys, like all of us GA Power customers who are pre-paying for nuke plants?

larry

January 18th, 2012
9:09 am

So why should the people outside Fulton and Dekalb pay for it?

Because people outside of Fulton and Dekalb use it too. , including myself.

(ir)Rational

January 18th, 2012
9:12 am

larry – And, I’m assuming you buy a ticket when you hop on (giving you the benefit of the doubt that you’re not a gate crasher), therefore you pay for it when you use it. In Cobb County, they have to pay for CCT, but you’re saying they should have to pay for MARTA too? If the two merged, then fine, everyone pays for MARTA. But when it doesn’t leave Fulton or Dekalb and I have to get on a different bus to go to Kennesaw or Lawrenceville (can I even take a bus to Lawrenceville?), I shouldn’t have to pay for the system, through taxes, that doesn’t provide me with anything resembling a service.

ken

January 18th, 2012
9:14 am

Once I am taxed 100% the government will have complete control. How much is enough ? When will it stop ?

Midori

January 18th, 2012
9:14 am

Why, I see them in the grocery store every day, buying filet mignon and beer with their subsidies. What nerve!

there goes AG setting that tone again :lol:

Wonder – was it Bill Orvis or Johnny Reb? I’ll bet they were buying IMPORTED beer to boot!! :lol:

ByteMe

January 18th, 2012
9:14 am

Okay, so the rest of Metro Atlanta should pay for MARTA too. Exactly where else, besides Fulton and Dekalb does it currently go? Nowhere you say? So why should the people outside Fulton and Dekalb pay for it?

Fulton and Dekalb — ancient history lesson — paid the tax for YEARS before the line was completed to take them anywhere. It also pays for bus service… the kind already Balkanized by counties.

The 1% sales tax in those two counties provide a lot of the operating budget for MARTA. And they’re always tight of money, because no one else pays much of anything to keep it running.

If you widen the number of people who pay for it, then spend that extra money on running lines from Doraville and the East Line into Gwinnett, run a line from Arts Center north to Acworth, run a line south from the airport to Griffin and Peachtree City… suddenly you have the backbone for the region everyone claims it is. Going to take more than 10 years, but that’s why it’s called an “investment” and why I also think the sales tax should be permanent until we repeal it instead of 10 years.

What I object to is the additional 1% tax on Fulton/Dekalb for the “backbone” instead of truly making it the backbone and funding it like it should be.

As for the lines, a quick bit of research returned this GDOT link:

http://www.dot.state.ga.us/maps/Documents/railroad/Metro_Atlanta_Rail_Map.pdf

The line you’re thinking of is owned by CSX, not GDOT, which owns 540 miles of rail lines in Georgia, but mostly in the south part of the state (didn’t know that!).

Karl Marx

January 18th, 2012
9:15 am

Amen Granny and pass the Crack Pipe.

Don’t forget it is now legal to pick up road kill in Georgia for your own consumption courtesy of the Jawja legislature just last year.

Midori

January 18th, 2012
9:16 am

Jerome Horwitz,

is that your real name or has Curly been reincarnated? :)

ByteMe

January 18th, 2012
9:16 am

Once I am taxed 100% the government will have complete control. How much is enough ? When will it stop ?

We’re not taxing you enough Ken. Hide. It’s your only chance!

bman

January 18th, 2012
9:19 am

those of us in the middle hate all of you far left/right wingers. We really, really do.

Tealiban Party

January 18th, 2012
9:19 am

All you need to do is look at truly modern cities such as Chicago, New York, even London, or Hong Kong and Shanghai to see how trains enhance the urban core and surrounding areas. In parts of the world where the backwards Teahadists don’t shove their misguided beliefs down everyone’s throats, transportation supports development. Think of downtown Acworth, or Marietta with a train station that supports growth and development around it. Think of getting from Norcross to midtown or downtown in 15 minutes consistently while sipping your coffee, and reading your paper. My problem is the transportation plan doesn’t go far enough. And Debbie Dooley certainly DOES NOT speak for all Georgians.

AmVet - “A lot of so-called conservatives don’t know what the word means." ~Barry Goldwater

January 18th, 2012
9:20 am

So why should the people outside Fulton and Dekalb pay for it?

Fine, here’s my solution.

To get into any MARTA station, you show your ID. If you don’t live in either of those two counties, take your sorry ass right back to that gas guzzling SUV pig of yours and get back in that parking lot called the highway/Interstate system and allow yet another hour to get to work.

Nose, meet face…

Joe Hussein Mama

January 18th, 2012
9:20 am

B. O. White — “Public transportation is socialism, pure and simple. There once was a guy named Adolph who enjoyed rounding up masses of folks and put them on trains-that’s similar to public transportation. . . (t)he highway system is a common sense solution to moving people with the mode of transporation that the individuals wish to use.”

I know Mr. White’s just an elaborate troll, but this is too good not to point out.

Our Interstate Highway system was based on the prewar German Autobahn system. In other words, the interstates that Mr. White loves so much are just the American version of Hitler’s highways.

Well done, Mr. White. You’re as well-crafted as troll as I’ve seen in many moons. :D

ByteMe

January 18th, 2012
9:22 am

those of us in the middle hate all of you far left/right wingers. We really, really do.

Those of us truly in the middle don’t “hate”. That’s too much effort and takes us out of the middle.

Talking Head

January 18th, 2012
9:23 am

Jay,

Why no column on the anti-piracy bills currently being debated in Congress when multiple global sites are down today? BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU!

bman

January 18th, 2012
9:23 am

“Think of downtown Acworth, or Marietta with a train station that supports growth and development around it.”

I suggested this to council members just the other day. I would love to see passenger trains run from Cartersville -Acworth- Kennesaw – Marietta- Smyrna. It runs straight through the historic downtown cities.

larry

January 18th, 2012
9:24 am

(ir)Rational

January 18th, 2012
9:24 am

ByteMe – Just goes to show I can’t believe everything I read. Still, I think it is a viable option. At least more viable than trying to buy the property and build the rail lines up that far at however much a mile. Even if the state had to take over part of the maintenance on the lines they used, it would end up cheaper.

As for Fulton and Dekalb paying for years before MARTA was completed, well duh. Of course, they didn’t enact the tax and then it magically appeared. I’m not talking about ancient history or anything else besides the fact that as of today, MARTA does not go anywhere outside of Fulton and Dekalb Counties. You’re saying the rest of Metro Atlanta should pay for it. I’m saying the get no discernible benefit from it and aren’t likely to in the foreseeable future. From what I remember of the proposal, it only has the MARTA lines extending a couple of miles (maybe not even that far depending on the route) into Cobb County, and I’m not sure about Gwinnett. There is a separate tax for that, but it still doesn’t justify expanding the tax base now to include places that are unable to benefit from the system.

MiltonMan

January 18th, 2012
9:25 am

Jay you only point out taxpayer monies used to build effective systems. You failed to mention the poorly managed MARTA which is heavily subsidized by an existing penny tax of Fulton & DeKalb residents. How about your crony buddies running the contract awarding at the airport? A judge just ruled that the city has to release selection documentation. Do you truly trust a political hack regardless of party affiliation of hoarding the monies created by this tax???

I will not be voting for any TSPLOST – tea party or not

AmVet - “A lot of so-called conservatives don’t know what the word means." ~Barry Goldwater

January 18th, 2012
9:27 am

“Think of downtown Acworth, or Marietta with a train station that supports growth and development around it.”

Would that be the mobile version of the bridge to nowhere? (smiley face emoticon here)

nelson

January 18th, 2012
9:28 am

Hey what is a penny sales tax, it is not a real tax. a real tax is a tax on income. Let us get on to another topic. How Barack is torpedoing the GOP contender before he even gets a nomination. Sink the ship before it leaves the dock.

Jay's Gerbil

January 18th, 2012
9:28 am

Hmmm, 6 to 7 percent sales tax, punishing ad-valorum tax on autos plus emission fees, and a state income tax. Virtually no street lights outside of the major city limits, pay for your own trash services in most cases. Hmm, this state is alot more expensive to live in than Florida for the non home owners. And these D-bags want more?

Julia

January 18th, 2012
9:28 am

would somebody please shut up these Teatards once and for all!!!

Jerome Horwitz

January 18th, 2012
9:28 am

@Midori – My blog name is indeed a tribute to my favorite stooge. Curly was the Master!

(ir)Rational

January 18th, 2012
9:29 am

AmVet – But that would stop so many legal citizens from using it. You know, the poor, elderly and minorities.

ByteMe

January 18th, 2012
9:30 am

You’re saying the rest of Metro Atlanta should pay for it. I’m saying the get no discernible benefit from it and aren’t likely to in the foreseeable future.

You haven’t seen how full the Doraville lot is on weekdays have you? Gwinnett riders get LOTS of use out of it.

And as I said: if the tax were semi-permanent instead of 10 years — like the MARTA tax is now — then they would be able to put together the funds (and bonds) to buy the land/tracks and start construction. But without a long-term revenue stream, they can’t issue bonds, so they can’t do more than “planning” on the projects.

Either it’s the backbone — which is what all the politicians claim it is — for the regional solution or it’s not. If it’s not, then fine, explain what IS going to be the backbone. If it is, fund it like it is instead of expecting just two counties in the region to fund it.

And until that question and the competing regional transit agencies is resolved, I’m against T-SPLOST. They can fix this in one legislative session if they cared as much about that as they do abortion.

MiltonMan

January 18th, 2012
9:31 am

larry, bad news??? Here let me clue you in pal with current news, Bush is no longer running for office. It will Obama & his record (Gas will probably spike to $4 by spring/summer) that the voters will decide not that it is “Bush’s fault”.

RL

January 18th, 2012
9:31 am

The transportation bill has way too much fat in it. It is not the taxpayers responsibility to fund commuter trains. If there is a market, let the railroad companies provide the access and transportation.
Look who is supporting the is bill – the inside the perimeter crowd that wants the entire state to pay for their transportation upgrades. Hey Jay – make your profession proud and do some investigating into who owns the property adjacent to proposed commuter rail stations and beltline stops. Report back to us.

GT

January 18th, 2012
9:31 am

Crooked politicians have got to have tax money to steal or why would they offer themselves for office. True 20 billion goes through Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, but how much is stolen for kickbacks from vendors to politicians. It is apparent looking at the roster of vendors that something is going on. You have merchants never before in the retail business winning bids to be in the airport mall.

Same goes in the port authority where relatives serve as directors, and the highway building where real estate sold is sold by cronies of the governor. The Tea Party is almost humorous. They are being used by their own party to look like the Republicans care, “its those sorry Democrats”, when we are not going to rid ourselves of any taxes, it would be like draining the Mississippi River, it just ain’t going to happen. What the Republicans will do is cut back on feeding the poor to build up a defense where their cronies make the money as contractors for the government. When someone suggest we cut everything on both side of the aisle watch them scream. Also it is interesting how much money is made by congressman on Wall Street. These guys should be hedge fund investors instead of legal crooks, but how else can they inside trade and receive inside information for legislated favors.

Paul

January 18th, 2012
9:32 am

Ahhh, the amazing Tea Party mind. How did those marvelous projects spring into existence? No one used any tax money. How did it happen? Tea Partiers know!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H5TQ4GF8rNI#t=00m35s

ByteMe

January 18th, 2012
9:32 am

Oh, and as for the CSX line, CSX and NS have both said they would be happy to grant right-of-way usage IF the liability is owned by the state taxpayers for all tracks. That’s their demands, take it or leave it. I say leave it for now and imminent domain it later :)

Jay's Gerbil

January 18th, 2012
9:32 am

off topic , but some more bad news for Republicans……………..

In case you missed it, Bush isn’t running. Obama is. In an instant gratification society, 3 years is like a generation. Obama has had plenty of time to do things, but his non negotiable dictatorship has crippled his effectiveness.

ByteMe

January 18th, 2012
9:33 am

It is not the taxpayers responsibility to fund commuter trains.

It’s not the taxpayers responsibility to fund roads, airports, sea ports….

Oh, wait, yes it is.

Paul

January 18th, 2012
9:33 am

Jay

I take it they limit opportunities for questions at these events?

josef

January 18th, 2012
9:35 am

Okay, got the miseries so bad I’ve had to drug myself to the degree I can’t function in the real world and have taken to my bed after cinsulting with the tea party, Confederates, Carpetbag-Scalawags International Zionist Hoodlums, ugly white women, welfare mothers, and Mustafa the al Qaaeda Terrorist Cat skulking under it…I guess I may fit right in here today…can’t feel any worse, that’s for sure…

Brother Bill…

Was checking around your neck of the woods the other day, a bit of trivia you may or may not know. Huey P’s pappy was from Sullivan’s Hollow, too…that explains a lot! :-)

The Thread…
Given some of the attitudes of the Atlantan’s about the folks “out there,” is it really any wonder so many of them would be against anything they see as benefitting Atlanta?

ITS ALL BUSHS FAULT

January 18th, 2012
9:35 am

The tea party had its 15mins , now please take your pledges and stoopid ideas somewhere like Alaska.