I often feel like Mongo in Blazing Saddles, hence my appropriation of his timeless comment. That is also a reason I enjoy blogs, as one can put out their thoughts and share ideas…and while I am offered reminded how slow I really can be, I never fail to learn something or find a sharper slant on what I am thinking.
Of late I have posted frequently about the RPV/General Assembly GOP need to create not only a vision of what they want to accomplish but also do so in very clear language. This is especially true in the realm of transportation. Unfortunately, both the GOP and the Democrats seem to think the only thing to focus on is how much money to spend on roads.
I do not believe this is where the focus needs to be…but how best to describe the situational needs?
Enter Jim Bacon and a recent piece on transportation where he observes:
The crisis is an “access and mobility crisis,” not a “roads crisis.” While the “leadership” dithers, the “access and mobility crisis” is morphing into “an economic prosperity / social stability / environmental sustainability crisis.”
The matter is not just about transportation, per se. It is more than a matter of how long it takes to get to and from work, which is what most folks talk about. It is also a matter of ease of living…how tough is it to even get out to the main roads? Is travel so tight that you know that if you don’t do certain things at certain times then you will have to spend more time on the activity that it is worth? Do you have to use counter-intuition to choose where you shop simply because of traffic?
It is a matter of access and mobility.
Our transportation problems are not solely a roads matter…it is a matter of roads AND maintenance AND land use AND zoning AND a whole range of matters that require a comprehensive plan to map a new direction.
It has been written that insanity is doing the same thing and expecting a different result. If true, then both the Democrats and Republicans are insane. Why? Because neither one seems to be seriously considering anything beyond spending as a way to combat transportation issues. They are not considering partnership with local governments, they are just pointing (or should I say “giving a”) finger to local governments.
Of course, the problem here is that neither side seems to really want to solve the problem. The real desire here is to office and wield power. An unsolved problem can be turned into a campaign issue to beat the other guys about the head and shoulders. Any doubts about that? Check today’s WaPo article on Tim Kaine.
And until the General Assembly becomes more about solving problems than assigning blame, then the problems will continue…and I will continue seeking better ways to phrase my ideas!