The Auto Club's chutzpah is remarkable; it recognizes the failure of our costly freeway network, it implicitly admits that the system is an economic black hole sucking in tens of billions of resources annually--and, then, it recommends that we build 400 more miles at a cost (probably understated) of more than $20 billion.
The proposal would perpetuate our automobile-dependency and our daily nightmare of frustration and anger; it would harm the interest of every group in the community. Business and industry already contribute heavily to our subsidized motorists and truckers; its huge tax burden and real estate investment would become even greater. Our continuing economic malaise is due, in part, to diversions of 25% of the gross national product to the automotive sector. Evidently the Auto Club feels that that is not enough!
It is long past time we recognized the consequences of the subsidies so greatly distorting the American economy--and take the necessary steps to find happier solutions for our transportation problems. Perhaps the Auto Club proposal will have the unintended result of forcing us to confront reality!
Hart is chairman of the Transportation Committee of the Sierra Club--Angeles Chapter.