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Cap'n Transit

On a basic level, you can get a majority to back transit funding if they believe it's for "us" and not for "them." That's what happened in free-fare districts like Hasselt and Whidbey Island. Is there a particular marginal constituency that is willing to accept a transit funding package as being "for us" and get a party to back it?


"The parties, however, aren't focused on the whole of public opinion; they're focused quite narrowly on marginal seats, the relatively small number of voters whose judgments will turn the election, and this is a very different polity than the city as a whole."

The solution to this is well known in political theory: full-scale party-proportional representation. :-P

Good luck getting it. That kind of change rarely happens absent a revolution. (Scotland seems to have pulled it off, though.)


There's always a difference between what people say they want, what they actually want and what they actually do.


I find a conversation that contains the term "willingness to pay" without probing the ability to pay, to be a tad troubling, particularly for the Los Angeles survey example.


A willingness to pay surely indicates that there is an ability to pay; in the absence of ability to pay, you would not be willing to pay. However, there can be a disconnect between what people imagine they might pay vs what they will pay when it's a tangible cost.

I wonder with electronic ticketing and auto-top-ups and the like whether there would be a higher tolerance of additional cost, as the transaction becomes almost invisible. You're not having to physically take the banknote out of your wallet for each trip. In Melbourne they'e gone the opposite way and are charging less for the electronic fares, and are constantly obsessed with giving discounts. I would have thought once electronic, you could not just discount, but surcharge for 'premium' or just peak services, but with politicised transport systems with no 'independent' body to blame, it's currently a no-go area...

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