published Tuesday, July 17th, 2012

Bicycle boondoggles

Could someone pinpoint the precise moment when it became the responsibility of non-bicycle-riding Americans to foot the bill for others to ride?

Federal lawmakers and bureaucrats obviously believe that it's the proper and constitutional role of government to force taxpayers to underwrite the expense of buying and maintaining bicycles for public use.

As you may know, Bike Chattanooga snagged $2 million in taxpayers' money to pay startup costs and operations for the first year of a program to let people use a debit or credit card to check out bicycles at dozens of "bike share" locations around the city.

While the bike share scheme continues to burn through the government handout, it remains in a "testing phase" and has not been widely launched in Chattanooga. The program's supporters, however, believe that the program will be able to stand on its own two wheels eventually.

We can hope. It would be a shame to see good tax dollars thrown after bad to promote a program that the federal government has no business being involved with in the first place.

If the Chattanooga bike boondoggle weren't bad enough, now there appears to be at least some official interest in a similar effort in Ringgold, Ga.

City Councilman Nick Millwood arranged a recent presentation for the council there about the Chattanooga program.

"It would be nice to see a few less cars and more bikes," he said.

And in some ways, Millwood may have a point. Bicycling promotes good health and an appreciation for the outdoors. It also conserves fuel.

Nothing wrong with that.

But the number of cars and bicycles on the road should be determined by the free-market choices of consumers, as they weigh costs of gasoline and automobile maintenance against whether it is practical to try to meet a significant portion of their transportation needs with a bicycle.

They don't need a gentle shove from Washington in the form of subsidies for bicycles.

In fairness, Millwood's plans for a bike share program and the ways he would seek to fund it are not yet fully fleshed out. The Times Free Press reported that he intended to go door to door to generate support among residents. It would be perfectly appropriate if private citizens and businesses pooled their resources voluntarily to promote the greater use of bicycles, if they so wish.

But the same article noted that individuals involved in Chattanooga's federally funded program "will be willing to help area communities to find grants to help set up similar bike shares."

Please don't! Taxpayers can't afford anymore two-wheel welfare programs like the Chattanooga bike share project.

With the United States $16 trillion in debt, it's time to focus on fiscal survival, rather than ensuring that there's a federally subsidized bicycle on every corner.

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When we started having to pay the price for so many vehicles on the roads (themselves constructed with tax dollars), spewing pollutants into the air, warping the very structure of our cities, and drawing forth billions of dollars into foreign military operations that claim thousands of American lives.

See, there's no free market out there, the roads are built for automobiles, and we don't have a fair alternative.

And I doubt you can come up with a way to practically implement one.

Sorry, but America's Car Culture has been feeding at the government trough almost since it was born. Where's your recognition that your ability to drive so freely derives from massive government investment in a compatible transportation infrastructure?

Tell you what, you can object to the bicycling when you start refunding the car usage. And no, gas taxes don't cover 100% of the spending.

Sorry.

July 17, 2012 at 12:34 a.m.
Easy123 said...

Could you possibly whine any more?

You admitted that it biking was a good thing.

"Bicycling promotes good health and an appreciation for the outdoors. It also conserves fuel."

Then you try to convince us that it's a waste of tax payers dollars. So which one is it?

I guess giving people (in particular, UTC students) the option to bike instead of drive or walk is a bad thing. If they implement the bike share properly, which they likely will, it could be a solid money maker. Think of how many UTC students (out of state students even!) would swipe their cards to drive a bike across campus or to ride down to the Tennessee Riverfront with some friends.

Why do you pricks have to suck all the positive out of everything? You don't even give positive outcomes of this program a second thought. Why is that? I think it's because you have run out of things to bitch about, so you resort to whining about the government giving money to a program that would promote people being healthier and living more active lives. SCANDAL!

But I know you Free Press suckers won't stop whining. Keep it up! You just look even more desperate with every passing day and every new (lame) article.

July 17, 2012 at 12:54 a.m.
nucanuck said...

Did our new editor take this job to write about minor things like the evils of subsidizing a bicycle leasing start-up program? There is a lot of bad stuff happening in our world...the worst that I have ever seen, and yet, somehow, a government initiative to promote a healthy sustainable life style rises above the rest and merits an editorial?

Will goverment provided walking paths be the next attack? Come to think of it, the Riverwalk has government contributions. c-man would scream "socialism".

Come on Mr Editor, put some thought into some serious topics instead of the minutia that you have been persuing.

July 17, 2012 at 2:26 a.m.
EaTn said...

I'm not a fan of bicycles, especially when sharing roads with motor vehicles. However tax dollars have been wasted in many more ways than providing support for healthy habits like bicycling.

July 17, 2012 at 7:20 a.m.
conservative said...

It wouldn't be accurate to term bulbs, easy, and nucanuck as the usual Socialist suspects because there is no doubt! The three spew Godless Socialism at every opportunity and stay up to the wee hours of the morning waiting for the publication of the Free Press in order to be the first to denounce any writing they deem contrary to Socialism.

Nucanuck is in the Socialist utopia of Canada and seems to be of retirement age while it is obvious to everyone that bulbs and easy are young, childish and living off Socialist government programs. I have yet to see any of the three write anything contrary or unsupportive of government or wasteful government programs.

They don't pay federal income taxes, whine for more of other people's money and are never satisfied.

July 17, 2012 at 7:43 a.m.
conservative said...

It has been a month or more since I have tried to read bulbs. The reason why is simply that I find him almost incomprehensible.

July 17, 2012 at 8:07 a.m.
MasterChefLen said...

The public at large subsidizes the Trucking industry as it is generally the large trucks that ruin most of the roads in this country. These trucks do not pay anything close in taxes compared to the road damage they cause. The bicycle subsidy is a very small drop in the bucket in subsidy comparison.

July 17, 2012 at 9:20 a.m.
aae1049 said...

Chattanooga entered the biking business in mid 90's, when bike lanes were designated directly in traffic lanes. What a novel concept to invite such of mix of motorized and non motorized vehicles, no conflicting use there ;-)

This whole notion that local government is suppose to provide a network of bicycles to rent, is as obnoxious as the blue freaking rhino, part of Chattanooga's property taxes 4 public art program, or $32,000 in property taxes for a blue freaking Rhino. Oh, forget they are parking police cars, and buying blue rhinos. This leaves me asking, what are they smoking?

Our local government has no business in the bicycle business, when they have sewers overflowing into the streets and river every time it rains.

If Billy Bob needs to rent a bike, small business and entrepreneurship will naturally generate without government interference. In fact, if a small business wishes to rent bicycles they now have to compete with City of Chattanooga.

If public art is needed, patrons of art and nonprofits can fill that gap. I for one want the local government focused on their Chartered mission and function, emergency services, streets, sewers, garbage.

No where in the City of Chattanooga Charter does it state that the City shall be the public art patrons, or in the bicycle business.

Snap out of it People!

July 17, 2012 at 10:46 a.m.
nucanuck said...

c-man, what you call "Godless Socialists" are the majority of the people in the developed world. You have been unable to name a single country that wasn't socialist in the developed world. That may be because anyone you disagree with, you label as socialist, leaving only you and a few other non-thinking ranters in your narrow club. Working as a community to achieve common goals is the only way for a civil society to exist. Open your eyes.

The topic was whether stimulating bicycle use through government subsidy is good or bad. Why don't you share your "thoughts" on that with us?

July 17, 2012 at 10:48 a.m.

Poor conservative, he closes his eyes and sings a song so he can't think about anything.

But really, you haven't seen me complain about wasteful government programs? Huh, I guess you've missed where I've pointed out corporate welfare. I consider many of those programs to be quite wasteful and fruitless.

Maybe you should just wait for the next time this editorial page writes a bit about the outrage of some defense spending cuts which they consider a threat to the Republic, when it's really just another boondoggle to enrich the wealthy.

No wait, you can't admit the government gives more money to the rich than the poor. Heck, you probably don't realize Wal-Mart makes more money off Food Stamps than they pay in taxes for them.

aae1049, the City of Chattanooga is responsible for the local roads and transportation, in partnership with the county and state.

http://www.chattanooga.gov/city-council-files/CityCharter/16--Title_15_Public_Works_Streets_Sewers_and_Airports.pdf

It is in the Charter.

Said City of Chattanooga shall have full control, authority and power over all streets, alleys, sidewalks and sewers, and the building, altering, repairing, cleaning and improving the same, including the power to fix and change the grades of all streets, alleys, sidewalks and sewers, to determine their with width, size, location and grade, and to order and enforce by law the grading, laying down, repairing and cleaning of sidewalks by the owners of abutting property, and to procure for the benefit of said city, by condemnation in the name of the city council, as now provided by law for such condemnation proceedings by purchase or otherwise, as now provided by law, any and all necessary property for widening or extending streets, and for enlarging and extending sewers when necessary to do so.

Note how it doesn't say what the roads are to be used for, but let's face it, there's a lot of options and use by bicyclists is one of them.

This is whats us into the next section:

The said City of Chattanooga shall additionally have the power and authority to pay unto any existing private transportation system a reasonable subsidy for its operation, the amount thereof to be wholly in the discretion of the governing body of such municipality, to insure continued operation of a privately operated public transportation system in such municipality, county or intrastate or interstate metropolitan area. Any such subsidy payments heretofore made by the City of Chattanooga for such purposes are hereby confirmed, ratified and approved. (Priv. Acts 1970, Ch. 303, § 1; Priv. Acts 1970, Ch. 307, § 7)

http://www.chattanooga.gov/city-council-files/CityCharter/19--Title_18_Transportation.pdf

Yeah, maybe you should check the law. Don't like it? Have it more narrowly written.

July 17, 2012 at 11:07 a.m.
aae1049 said...

Nucanuck, Godless Socialist are NOT the majority of the developed world, and for sure not in these parts my friend. So, if anyone is ranting, it would most certainly be you.

Where are your Godless Socialist? They sure aren't voting, because the majority of elected leaders in the City and County are Republicans. Maybe if your socialists could come out and be counted. The two or three we saw on the courthouse lawn with Occupy Movement left town.:-)

Gov does not exist to drive business markets. Get a grip, our Country was founded on less is more in Gov.

July 17, 2012 at 11:07 a.m.

Oh come on, the government giving money to a private business for their own enrichment is perfectly legitimate!

It's the AMERICAN WAY. Corporate Socialism!

July 17, 2012 at 11:07 a.m.
aae1049 said...

happywithnewbulbs What a stretch of your "Gov please support me" imagination.

The City Charter does grant the City streets as a mission, undisputed, duh. However, to classify Billy Bob's bicycle from the back porch as "Transportation" similar to a bus or car, is just drinking more of that Blue Rhino koolaid. Pathetic reaching, the Charter never intended for Bubu bicycle funding, and your citations have no relationship to suggest Chattanooga should be in the biking business. BTW where are the helmets, wait for the lawsuits on that one.

Well, I am off to get work done. To the ONE Godless Socialist posting here, In God I Trust, so off to work I go.

July 17, 2012 at 11:20 a.m.
Easy123 said...

Aae1049,

Everyone that isn't a Republican is a "godless Socialist" in the mind of Conservative. You don't post here enough to know that. Nucanuck tried to explain that but it seems to have gone over your head.

Conservative,

They could build monuments to your ignorance. And pot meet kettle on the incomprehensible part. Your posts are psychotic. "Socialist" this, "Marxist" that, blah blah blah!

July 17, 2012 at 11:51 a.m.
conservative said...

Easy, you are Godless and you are a Socialist, so why do you get so angry about that truth?

July 17, 2012 at 12:26 p.m.
Easy123 said...

Conservative,

I am not, nor have I ever been, a Socialist. However, you seem to fit all the criteria for "dumbass".

In order for me or anyone to be "godless", a god would have to exist. And since there is absolutely zero proof of any such deity, the term "godless" cannot be used to describe anyone.

Would you like to try again?

July 17, 2012 at 1:51 p.m.
LibDem said...

I guess the "precise moment" would be when the government built highways for auto traffic. Or perhaps when we decided we'd like our grandchildren to be able to breathe.

(I like the ring of "Godless Socialist" but, as Easy123 points out, this might require that I care one way or the other about a god which I don't. I have trouble portraying myself in terms of a deity. I have higher standards.)

July 17, 2012 at 2:22 p.m.

aae1049, whether or not you believe it's the right thing, you're the one making false claims about the charter. It does have provisions that allow for this action. The section regarding funding of private transportation companies actually does say:

"and operate a system of street railroads and/or electric coaches and/or motor buses, or any other appropriate vehicles for the transportation for hire of passengers and their personal baggage upon any or all roads, streets or highways in said municipality, county, and the metropolitan area thereof,"

Sorry, but the charter is not limited to buses and cars, but can cover any other appropriate vehicle. I'm sure they took the time to declare that they feel bicycles are appropriate vehicles. And trying to argue a technicality that the person on the bicycle isn't strictly a passenger won't get you very far.

I also mentioned the streets because you complained about the bicycle lanes, but they do have the right to make those decisions.

As for the Helmets, Tennessee law only requires Helmets for those under the age of 16, who can't rent those bicycles anyway. If you want to mandate having a helmet for everybody on a bicycle, go right ahead.

And liability waivers are all over the place (go check the parking tickets for example!), so don't be surprised at them being part of the process for getting a bicycle either.

Anyway, you don't like socialism? Stop the biggest share of it, corporate socialism. But don't claim the laws don't say what they do.

July 17, 2012 at 2:26 p.m.
aae1049 said...

happywithnewblubs You and Gary Busey, Helment Limiters. Problem is, there are no helmets rented with the bicycles for the 16 and under.

People that think that gov should be in business, doesn't understand what a failure gov is at running operations.

The Charter NEVER anticipated the City would put bicycles in 45 mph traffic lanes. I can copy and paste law all day long, but you cannot produce one section the references bike programs.

July 17, 2012 at 3:02 p.m.
chatt_man said...

If the government doesn't start the bicycle business in our fair city, then who could?

Obama just said that "If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen". And, "look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own". And then he went on to say "I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart". What a demeaning statement from that arrogant a$$hole.

So, I ask again, if the government didn't start this bicycle business, then who could?

It would be interesting to see Obama and Biden stand before an audience of, say, plant workers who lost their jobs because of EPA regulations, and remind them “you didn’t get to the unemployment line on your own — somebody gave you some help!”

July 17, 2012 at 3:13 p.m.
Easy123 said...

Chattman,

The "you didn't build that" statement was referring to the roads and highways, not the businesses.

You're an idiot.

July 17, 2012 at 3:25 p.m.
conservative said...

easy...

There is a reason why "Godless" is capitalized. The reason is because Christians know there is only ONE true God, the God of the Bible, the creator of heaven and earth. He is the God who will judge all mankind through Jesus Christ.

The false gods are everyone and everything else that man worships and this includes government. You are evidently even younger than I imagined for this is common knowledge.

Even you, an avowed atheist have a god, probably yourself in addition to government.

You are a Socialist, simply because you want government to control or own almost everything and the economy and to provide you with your wants and needs in place of the true God.

July 17, 2012 at 3:39 p.m.
Rickaroo said...

A perfect example of aae1049's lack of basic reading comprehension and her inability to deal with facts: Bulbs said this - "As for the Helmets, Tennessee law only requires Helmets for those under the age of 16, who can't rent those bicycles anyway." What was aae's response? "Problem is, there are no helmets rented with the bicycles for the 16 and under." Read it one more time, aae: "those under the age of 16...CAN'T RENT THOSE BICYCLES ANYWAY." Has it sunk in yet?

People like you and the con-man have your minds so programmed to hate and speak against anything that flies in the face of your wing-nut beliefs that you feel no need whatsoever to deal with facts or with taking the time to absorb whether or not there is any truth to what someone has just said or written. You just like to spew your mindless babble for the sake of hearing yourselves babble it.

July 17, 2012 at 3:40 p.m.
Rickaroo said...

If there is any more convincing proof needed that age does not necessarily confer wisdom on anyone, look no further than...the con-man.

July 17, 2012 at 3:57 p.m.
chatt_man said...

You can't dismiss that arrogant, degrading speech with that one statement, Easy. What about the other statements?

And who built the roads and highways, Easy? You don't have to wiki that, Easy, I'll tell you, The taxpayers, with the machines that private business created, with the monies that working American taxpayers paid.

This guy is absolutely a damn disgrace to the working people of this country. And if he had his way, none of us would be working in private businesses, and we would all be dependent on the government.

Then, when there are no producers, and we are all consumers, we all have to work at the government factories for our room, food, healthcare, and what ever little extras the government sees fit to provide us with.

That's what you obviously fail to see coming. That's the reason you won't address, or refute the statement from Margaret Thatcher, that "The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money.

You think the rich will never run out of money, and that's not so. And maybe before they let that happen, they will move to another country. Either way, it is not a sustainable plan.

July 17, 2012 at 4:01 p.m.

aae1049, you seem confused. You were the one who brought up helmet laws. I'm merely pointing out that they don't require them in Tennessee for those over 16, and as the renting isn't to anybody under 16, it's not a problem. They aren't going to be getting a bicycle.

The charter is indeed not specific, but open-ended, that is why bicycles are covered under the law. If you have a specific problem with safety conditions, then it can be addressed, but don't falsely claim the charter doesn't allow the program. It does.

Rickaroo, I'm glad you noticed. It's a bit mind-boggling how some people can be so strong in their convictions they don't recognize what they just said.

chatt_man, yes, many private companies such as road construction ones do benefit from government spending. Sometimes this is legitimate, sometimes it is not. But still, you just pointed out how people get enriched from the government. Thanks!

Since society as a whole benefits from an effective transportation network, massively, the graft and corruption while a problem does not warrant completely avoiding it. Sure, there are Bridges to Nowhere, but there are plenty of bridges to nowhere that become somewhere thinks to them. And even the "wasted" money can be recovered with some effort. (You can contrast this to say executions, where the result is final and irrecoverable.)

But do keep quoting Margaret Thatcher, while completely ignoring how much government action IS benefiting the rich, and making them richer. Socialism, believe it or not, isn't about burning money, but about investing it in society as a whole.

And proper government is a lot better about serving the needs of society than a few individuals tend to be. You just don't see it. You can't even admit that current government we have isn't working for the poor, but for the wealthy. That's why they're not getting poorer, they're getting richer and richer.

So...who is suffering?

Of course, they'd benefit from others being richer too, but that kind of insight is lacking in a lot of people. Henry Ford got it though. Sure, he was wrong about a lot of things, but he knew rested employees who were paid well were better for his company.

But hey, go with your unsustainable plan of giving more and more to the rich, while cutting services to everybody else to pay for it. Heck, you probably think the bankers are producing something, as opposed to mostly becoming dangerous parasites on the flow of the economy.

July 17, 2012 at 4:32 p.m.
Rickaroo said...

"The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money."

Give it up already, chatt_man. That is one of the most trite, meaningless statements ever to come down the right wing expressway. That one wore out its originality a long time ago. That and Ronnie's "government is not the solution to our problems; government is the problem." Those expressions might have sounded clever at first, and they obviously still sound clever to you guys as they roll off your tongues over and over and over again, but they make no sense whatsoever. Yet you guys keep mindlessly repeating them. Try to be a little more original, at least. Oh wait...you're conservatives. Expecting a conservative to be original is like expecting a fish to stop swimming or the pope to stop wearing funny hats. Never mind, then. Your lack of originality is excused...or understood, at least. It's still annoying as hell...but understood.

July 17, 2012 at 4:41 p.m.

But it's so pithy, it must be true! Don't we govern in statements of 20 words or less?

July 17, 2012 at 4:51 p.m.
Rickaroo said...

Unfortunately that seems to be the rule of thumb for the rabid righties. It often takes a certain amount of digging and thinking to get at the truth. Dogma, lies, propaganda... they're more easily captured in a sound byte than truth is.

July 17, 2012 at 5:11 p.m.
Easy123 said...

Conservative,

Contrary to your false confidence in your "one true god", there is no evidence for any god. You haven't presented any. No one has. But please keep believing in something off zero evidence. It just adds to my claim of your dumbassery.

The phrase "false gods" is nothing more than Christian rhetoric. Spending your time doing something other than worshipping a deity is not "worshipping a false god". It's called living your life without believing in fairy tales. So much for "common knowledge", right? LOL!

And, once again, I'm not a Socialist. Your entire last paragraph is a straw man argument. I have never posted or referenced any of the claims you make against me.

July 17, 2012 at 5:14 p.m.
engineerguy said...

I am amazed at how quickly this topic degenerated into mindless rhetoric as to whether conservatives or liberals are the bigger a-holes. The simple fact is that if users of automobiles had to pay the true cost of driving on our nation's roads, most of us would be walking. The typical highway costs between 1 and 5 million per mile. One of the biggest government boondogles, the Big Dig in Boston, ended up costing somewhere in the neighborhood of 1 billion per mile. But heaven forbid we spend anything to promote any other form of transportation.

So this bike share project had a 2 million federal grant to cover startup and operational costs for a year and I guess somewhere a mile of highway won't get built as a result. What a damn shame.

Getting people using a bike or walking to run an errand reduces polution, may save a little gas, free up a parking space that might have otherwise been used, and might even provide some health benefit in the form of exercise.

What is also lost in this argument over who whould pay what are the intangible benefits. It makes it easier for people who work and live downtown to get around. It might promote tourists to explore businesses outside the couple of blocks near the riverfront. The city is actually getting some positive press about the program, other cities want to learn about our system and adopt it. Perhaps that press generates interest for people from other areas to visit Chattanooga. And we are joining the ranks of many cities who have already adopted similar bike share systems that are, in fact very popular.

Arguing whether Bike share is a socialist or conservative issue misses the point. The real discussion needs to be about the direction the citizens of this community want to take. Will it be one of ever increasing highways, gridlock, and parking lots until we turn into a miniature version of Atlanta, or will it be one that creates a liveable community with many transportation options? I consider myself a conservative but would prefer the latter choice.

July 17, 2012 at 5:30 p.m.
conservative said...

easy....

The point is you either don't know or pretend you don't know what "Godless" means. To communicate with others it is essential to know what each has in mind when words are used so as to communicate effectively and understand each other. You will no doubt see and hear this word "Godless" many times in the future, so now you know.

Your atheist arrogance insists that you decide the meaning of words or that others must bend to your ideas. You are so insufferable I can't help but wonder how you could get along with anyone.

Your denial of your Socialist beliefs is weak and what you write in support of government belies your denial.

What do you want from our federal government? What do you want our federal government to do?

July 17, 2012 at 5:56 p.m.
Easy123 said...

Conservative,

The word means nothing to me. Now you know.

Your Christian ignorance borders on psychosis. I wonder how you get through every day being so utterly ignorant of facts and reality.

You have presented no proof of any Socialistic claim I've made. And YOU are talking about weak? Put your money where your mouth is and present something other than your baseless opinion.

Keep reaching, sweetie.

July 17, 2012 at 6:06 p.m.

engineerguy, sadly we're not allowed to have a discussion about where we want to go, because we're bound by whatever was decided over 200 years ago by a bunch of people who aren't alive to say their views on current conditions. Combined with a fetish for discussing decades old views by yet another group of people who mostly aren't alive to say their views either.

There is no room for discussion.

A pity.

July 17, 2012 at 6:39 p.m.
conservative said...

Your contempt for me means nothing to me. I have heard it all before.

Again, What do you want from our federal government? What do you want our federal government to do?

July 17, 2012 at 6:45 p.m.
conservative said...

nucanuck....

Your "Working as a community to achieve common goals is the only way for a civil society to exist." statement sounds soo good. You must have had something in mind when you made that statement to me, what was it?

Platitudes easily mask hypocrisy.

Why don't you plainly state that you are a Socialist and defend it instead of venting your anger on me? You evidently don't have much confidence in your ability to convince others of the virtues of Socialism.

July 17, 2012 at 7:13 p.m.

"Platitudes easily mask hypocrisy."

Now say that three times while looking into a mirror.

July 17, 2012 at 7:21 p.m.
conservative said...

Bikes have been around for over a hundred years. We have gotten along just fine without Socialist government taking other people's money to buy a bike for someone who has a cell phone or I pad, or a pair of running shoes that cost more than a bike!

July 17, 2012 at 7:22 p.m.

Misrepresenting the situation again?

How predictable.

Or can you find anywhere that this program is about buying bicycles for people?

No?

But you know what we could do without? A government giving tax deductions to Mitt Romney for his Horse Dressage company.

Feel free to rant about that.

July 17, 2012 at 7:46 p.m.
Easy123 said...

Conservative,

I'm sure you have heard it all before. You will never be able to hide your ignorance and people will always call you out on it.

I don't want anything from the government and I don't want the federal government to do anything. I don't have any expectations, wants or needs from the government. But it's always good when the government does what it was put in place to do. I'm not sure why you hold so much disdain and hatred for our government but I'm sure it has something to do with you Christian psychosis.

July 17, 2012 at 8:35 p.m.
aae1049 said...

I see EasyMonthlyCheck, RickaGovfree, HappywithGovPaidBlubs are traveling to left field, as always.

The subject matter was about the City's bicycle program, and another example of Government exceeding their mission and functions. Ya missed it.

Why do all these liberals post on the right side, rather odd. You guys belong with the drone liberal cartoon followers, Clay Bennet, or on the left side paper writing "yes Harry Austin, yes Harry Austin," praising everything that is growth of gov.

Go to the left side and inundate Harry Austin with your predictable host of dog words. Although, I would miss counting the number of times RickaGovFree uses, Dogma, Blue Dog over and over, and structuring sentences to ensure another Dogma will fit.

Don't blame ya for staying on the right side of the print. Conservatives are more interesting, have more depth, are more dimensional, and always better educated, and pay back their student loans.

July 17, 2012 at 9:05 p.m.

I see the right-wing noise brigade is engaging in their childish name-calling and petulant whining again.

Maybe you want to only sycophants, but some of the rest of us respect honest criticism...and consider it very important to reply when somebody deceives and misleads.

Or just decides to be a petty jerk. A waste of time, perhaps, but better to waste time than be silent in the face of disreputable conduct.

But actually, do you know the largest source of student loan defaults? For-profit colleges. Why is that? Is it perhaps because those colleges are profiteering off the government?

July 17, 2012 at 9:47 p.m.
engineerguy said...

I want to make sure I understand this. Apparently it is within the constitution and acceptable for the federal government to subsidize highways, farmers, homeowners, and any number of other groups but it is somehow not acceptable to spend a tiny fraction of the overall transportation budget on infrastructure to support such things as riding a bike to work or school?

By the way, I don't recall that the purpose of the program is to "buy a bicycle for someone with a cell phone." The purpose is to provide a transportation system for anyone to use. It is designed to promote making short trips by bicycle rather than by car.

We currently fund mass transit systems (buses) how is a transit system designed around a bicycle all that different?

But again rather than discuss the issue it is so much simpler to vilify someone with a different opinion. Statements like "conservatives are better educated and pay back their student loans" or snarky comments about Christians do little to actually address the underlying issues. Like it or not the government does play a role in shaping the direction of our communities from local zoning laws to federal subsidies for parks, homeowners, business etc.

So again, I ask if the federal government has no business subsidizing a bicycle transportation system because it is "the government exceeding its mission and functions" then how is it acceptable for the government to subsidize highways? Seems to me it is all part of providing an infrastructure for people to get from place to place.

July 17, 2012 at 10:02 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

All you need to do to promote bicycling is provide roads that are not dangerous to share with motor vehicles. That might be a responsible role for government. This stupid, overpriced bicycle share program is not.

July 17, 2012 at 11:12 p.m.
Easy123 said...

BRP,

Whiner!

July 17, 2012 at 11:14 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Easy... Idiot.

July 17, 2012 at 11:20 p.m.
Easy123 said...

I struck a nerve! LOL!

July 17, 2012 at 11:26 p.m.

BRP, you're actually quite correct in the assessment that the city should provide an effective transportation network instead of the automobile-focused system we've been getting for the past few decades. However that would be far more expensive an investment, so we get a half-measure.

Engineerguy, you must be an engineer, you keep trying to solve problems.

Personally, I would prefer another option with more focus on buses and trunk-lines, but I don't object in principle to the bicycle plan.

July 17, 2012 at 11:34 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

happybulbs,

When I worked in Chattanooga I tried biking to work. It was not worth the risk. Forget throwing other people's money at a pipe dream. The city is more likely to get someone killed than to do anything useful.

July 17, 2012 at 11:45 p.m.
Easy123 said...

BRP,

Many people use bikes in Chattanooga, especially downtown. Just because you are a coward doesn't mean everyone else that rides a bike is.

This isn't a pipe dream. It's already being implemented. You might want to check the definition of "pipe dream" before you use it incorrectly again.

July 17, 2012 at 11:47 p.m.
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