Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

There’s No Such Thing As Congestion. There’s Just Government.

Posted by M. C. on June 30, 2022

More to the point, to borrow a leaf from Uber or Lyft, he would engage in peak load pricing: charge quite a bit for morning and evening rush hours, and very little or nothing at all at 3am. Then, traffic would move smoothly 24-7 and congestion would be a phenomenon of the past. Ditto for all other amenities, such as airport access, museums, now under government control.

By Walter E. Block

Real Clear Markets

I recently took a trip from Brooklyn to Vancouver, Canada via the Newark Airport. Everywhere I went, I was confronted with the Sovietization of our economy; that is, congestion, long waiting lines, interminable ones. We beat the USSR in the Cold War to be sure; however, their economic system has been quite a bit more than slightly taking over ours.

First of all, the Belt Parkway from Coney Island to the Verrazano Bridge was an adventure in bumper to bumper driving. Not only a bicyclist, nor even a moderately fast runner, but even a race walker could have beaten us. The going in Staten Island was much the same: wall to wall cars, trucks and buses, all sitting there, their occupants twiddling their thumbs in frustration.

Then the Newark Airport. You try to get through those massive TSA lines in less than 90-120 minutes; good luck to you. We are now advised to get to the airport not one hour before take-off, nor even two; three hours is now the eminently reasonable suggestion. I followed this sterling advice and was glad I did. I needed pretty much every minute of that time to get through to my plane.

Why all these massive tie-ups, Soviet style? In that country, during those times, there were massive queues for pretty much everything. We used to look down upon those poor sufferers. They faced serious waiting time for clothes, groceries, toys, you name it; there where interminable line ups. Everything was provided by government and everywhere there was congestion.

In the U.S. in contrast, this malady takes place, also, whenever the state rears its ugly head, but, happily, they are not as widespread as in that forlorn economy. During my trip to the Big Apple I also had occasion to visit two other entities organized, administered, managed, supported by, the all-loving government: the American Museum of Natural History and the Museum of Modern Art. You’ll never guess my experience there? Yes, perpetual queues. One minor detail: out of towners pay admission fees, hefty ones; locals? voluntary contributions only. I guess they don’t much want to encourage tourism.

See the rest here

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