Friday, November 14, 2008

At Least Buy Me Dinner First...

So it's happened: The Turnpike Authority has recommended increasing tolls on the bridge and tunnels by $3.50, and the Weston and Allston toll plazas by $0.75. I head to the office twice a week: They want to pull $626 a year more out of my pocket. That would be $1,690 a year for a full week's commute. Seriously, guys, what the hell?

Everyone understands that the Big Dig has royally screwed the state's finances. We get that, and we understand we have to pay off the debt. What we don't understand is why half of us are being asked to take this one for the team. Spread the pain a little, for God's sake.

Why not add open road tolling to 93 and create some equity in the tolling scheme? The open system would allow everyone to maintain highway speed, so there's no additional traffic. Last time the Globe asked, Turnpike Chair Andy LeBovidge said they didn't want to incur the expense of putting them up. I imagine he had a good laugh after hanging up with the reporter. He won't do it because he, Transportation Secretary Bernard Cohen and Governor Patrick are scared shitless of a real fight with the legislature. A fight they'd win.

Look, I've outlined  how I feel about this before: Either remove the tolls and get the money through the tax base (likely a gas tax), or toll everyone, which means hitting up the South Shore and 93N corridor. As it is right now, half the state is paying for a project that more directly benefits the other half:

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Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Flirting With the Oldies

I voted this morning. I was the 151st vote cast in my precinct. There wasn't a line checking in, but I had to wait behind two people to check out. The guy in front of me, clearly an octogenarian, gave the septuagenarian poll worker his address.

Man: 10 Thorndike Street

Woman: Did you say 10, honey?

Man: Honey?! I am on the market.

Woman: (giggles like a school girl)

Man: I need someone to cook for me.

Woman: (stops giggling) I don't cook!

Me, to the old man: I think you blew it.

Man: I think so, too. (Leaves)

Me, to the Woman: I thought he had a chance.

Woman: He thought so, too, but I don't cook and I don't clean windows!

Vote for Barack Obama!

On my way to the polls now. Go Barack!