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With more fuel efficient vehicles, the road services nationwide anticipate that they will soon not be collecting enought taxes to cover construction and maintenance.  (Source: The New York Times)

The solution, according to some, is to replace at-the-pump gas taxes with a mileage road tax. A House-appointed panel of experts has unanimously suggested such a tax be installed in 11 years, in the year 2020.  (Source: ForeignPolicy)
Prospective taxation changes look to catch taxes up to fuel efficiency gains

Fuel efficiencies have been steadily on the rise and will soon be raised substantially by new CAFE rules, which mandate that certain vehicle classes meet certain fuel economy levels. However, consumers tend to travel further in fuel efficient cars than they do in less efficient models.  This means that the roads experience more wear and tear.  Furthermore, the extra travel increases road congestion and will like necessitate new road construction.

Currently consumers pay an at-the-pump tax on gasoline to cover such expenses.  However, as cars increasingly cover more mileage on less gas, these taxes likely won't be able to keep up with the expenses. 

One solution is to raise the gas taxes -- but this is something consumers don't like, and many argue it is unfair to certain vehicle classes like heavy trucks.  An alternative that is becoming increasingly popular is the idea of a per-mile road tax.  Such a scenario would see the government monitor drivers' every movement via GPS to check how many miles they were driving and tax them appropriately.

A House-appointed 15-member National Surface Transportation Infrastructure Financing Commission just reached a unanimous decision that a mileage tax was the "best path forward".  States Robert Atkinson, Ph.D., the chairperson of the Commission, "If you’re committed to the system being improved then it was a no-brainer."

The Commission suggested 2020 as the date to phase out gas taxes and install a mileage tax.  Their current plan is to replace an 18.5 cents a gallon pump tax with a 1 to 2 cents per mile tax for cars and light trucks.  For fuel efficient cars like the Toyota Prius or the Ford Fusion Hybrid, this has the potential to at least triple taxes.

Oregon has already been field testing such a road tax since 2007.  And groundwork laid out by the University of Iowa’s Public Policy Center a decade ago provides a solid basis for how such a tax scheme can be ideally carried out.  The University of Iowa just received a $16M USD government grant to carry out road tests with 2,700 vehicles in six states.  The GPS-equipped vehicles will send data to the University "billing center" which will generate simulated "bills".

The tax would likely please owners of less fuel efficient vehicles like older cars or trucks.  However, it would likely especially irritate owners of the upcoming generation of electric vehicles, which currently will pay no fuel tax if they operate only on plug power.  Pete Rahn, director of the Missouri Department of Transportation complains, "The Chevrolet Volt won’t pay a penny of fuel tax."

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GPS tracking my car
By TheSpaniard on 7/2/2009 11:44:50 AM , Rating: 5
you know what... like hell they are going to have a GPS unit on my car.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By elessar1 on 7/2/2009 12:01:24 PM , Rating: 5
Actually a GPS is not needed, they only have to certify your car mileage once a year and make sure your mileage count is not altered (a sealed hack-proof mileage counter) and voila: tax per mile.

There are countrys where is mandatory to take an annual tech inspection (certified by the government) in order to have the rigth to circulate in you vehicle. That tech inspection is the perfect time to apply a "mileage tax".


RE: GPS tracking my car
By chmilz on 7/2/2009 12:07:09 PM , Rating: 5
If you think for a second that the government *only* wants to track your mileage for tax purposes with this proposition, you sir, are naive and/or completely out to friggin lunch.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By FITCamaro on 7/2/2009 12:18:30 PM , Rating: 5
Exactly. While I agree a per mile tax could be done without GPS, if it was done with one you can be damn sure they would use for far more than that.

All I know is there's no way in hell I'm letting the government put a GPS system on my car that they control. While its true that any car with a GPS system already on it can be located already, currently they have to have a reason to find it, meaning a court order.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By michael67 on 7/2/2009 1:38:52 PM , Rating: 4
Imho, its a really stupid idea to have tax per mile.

For me its just stupid not to push consumers in to high efficient cars, if you don't do it for the environment, then at least we don't use up all the oil we have now, and my grand kids will also have some!

If there is less incentive to use efficient cars, then it will stagger development of these type of cars.

And saying i don't wane drive a small car is also a non argument, neader do i, i drive a Lexus GS460h hybrid (360hp) that is mouths more fuel efficient then a Toyota Corolla 2L petrol, now i am smiling every time i filing up my car compared to my old GS300, and the damn car is even a lot quicker :D
And the misses has a real small Opel Corsa D 1.3 CDTI ECOTEC that drives more the 45 miles to the gallon

Here in Holland we have to types of diesel, there's properly the something similar in the US,
One normal one for road cars, (high tax +/- 1 euro L)
And red low tax diesel for (generators, industrial equipment, boats etc.), (low tax +/- 0.60 euro L)
So if they wane save the transport industry they can make a blue diesel ore so for trucks whit lower tax.

Imho, you only get people in efficient cars if they feel it in there wallet and it makes economic sens, it got me in to a hybrid at least to bad it dint run on diesel do.
BMW are making diesels that out preform most gasoline cars, and you wouldn't notice that your driving a diesel, except when your filling it up.

PS. GPS system wouldn't work anyway unless you readout the data, because some allu foil over the antenna would block the system and you would be driving for free.
So you need to check it whit camera's next to the road, car spotted by camera but onboard system says you ware not driving is very suspicious :D

RE: GPS tracking my car
By grandpope on 7/2/2009 2:51:34 PM , Rating: 3
ome allu foil over the antenna would block the system and you would be driving for free.

So it's kinda like a tinfoil hat for your car?

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Samus on 7/2/2009 4:59:22 PM , Rating: 5
What kind of free country do we live in where we can't even drive around to relax and blow off some steam without funding a war somewhere with tax dollars?

What's next, tax bicycles too when everyone turns to those?

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Hiawa23 on 7/2/2009 6:40:15 PM , Rating: 2
What kind of free country do we live in where we can't even drive around to relax and blow off some steam without funding a war somewhere with tax dollars?

What's next, tax bicycles too when everyone turns to those?

I agree, this is stupid. So the people who has run our country for decades, now has borrowed too much money, more than anyone can pay back, so now it's tax everything time instead of fixing the problems.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Chocobollz on 7/4/09, Rating: -1
RE: GPS tracking my car
By michael67 on 7/4/2009 9:27:48 PM , Rating: 1
There is no problem whit putting in a GPS, I in Holland ore ware i now live in Norway would have no problem whit it, But if i would live in the US i would properly have a problem whit it.

I just don't trust governments the is run by people like bush and tricky dick.
I am not a lefty but i just don't believe it when people like that say "we wont use your data for anything else then taxing your road usages"
And even if the current government is more trust wordy how is saying that the next one will be.
They just don't have a good track record when it comes to spying on there citizens, and in the mean time getting them self rich of big fat oil contracts.

Maybe i am wrong i hope so, but i don't think it.

By mmcdonalataocdotgov on 7/6/2009 7:42:13 AM , Rating: 2
This is a road tax, not a fund everything tax. The roads and bridges are falling apart in this country and we need to fix them. How is paying a per mile tax on usage to repair roads and bridges funding a war or servicing debt?

I guess all our bridges should collapse, then.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By TSS on 7/5/2009 8:37:43 AM , Rating: 2
just a disclaimer as another dutch person, where not better off either.

we already have tax per mile comming, called "Kilometerrijden" or kilometerdriving. instead of our current taxes for owning the vehicle (and paying for roads that way), we now only have to pay for each kilometer. they say current taxes will slowly be decreased untill their gone, but really, who buys that?

the problem is they want to make this variable, in other words, busy streets at busy times can cost you more money. we don't even know what the tariffs are going to be, because they haven't set them yet. system is to go live in 2011 for trucks and 2012 for cars (this is already been delayed a year).

on paper it looks good, so does communism. only there's just too many ways to abuse the system.

besides that in the nation with the highest gas prices in the world because of gas-taxes, i don't belive for 1 single nanosecond that this will make driving or owning a car "cheaper".

considering the problems the government here has already had with this tax per mile system, i'd say don't ever get started on it.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By rcc on 7/2/2009 3:35:52 PM , Rating: 2
While its true that any car with a GPS system already on it can be located already, currently they have to have a reason to find it, meaning a court order.

Only if it's attached to a cell phone with a tracking feature. GPS itself is receive only.

Now, if you give them phyical access to your GPS unit, all bets are off.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By bighairycamel on 7/2/2009 4:54:33 PM , Rating: 2
Makes me wonder who they expect to pay for the GPS and to have it installed. Maybe they'll leave it up to auto makers to "phase-in" in which case car prices will slightly increase therefor passing the costs onto the consumer.

Or maybe they'll subsidize part of it like they did with the digital TV transition and give us "coupons". Oh joy!

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Mint on 7/2/2009 1:46:12 PM , Rating: 2
I'm not worried about the gov't tracking me, but I understand why others are. That's why it'll never happen with GPS. There will only be some speed/distance monitoring and the information will be wirelessly communicated.

There is another very important use for this technology: Pay as you drive insurance. Because odometer reporting is unreliable and prone to fraud, all trial attempts at this require some sort of device to be installed.

Why is this important? Without the devices, insurance rates for low mileage drivers are barely any lower, i.e. 20% discount for 1/5th the driving. That means low mileage drivers are subsidizing high mileage ones, which is BS because auto insurance is a huge expense - up to 100x that of gas tax.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By tastyratz on 7/2/2009 2:15:54 PM , Rating: 2
no insurance rates aren't slightly lower for low mileage driven cars because of odometer fraud, that's a minute factor. Insurance companies wont lower their rates because of something like this when their profits are through the roof. Insurance rates are BS as it is, imagine if there wasn't competition to keep it less through the roof?

These devices would have to operate in a similar method of an odometer as well so they would be susceptible to fraud just as well.

Wirelessly communicating would be just as bad as gps... Putting some sort of system that transmits when within range of say, a toll booth, etc. will mark that vehicle being at that location. If they put "listening devices" populated along the highways you would know when a car goes by x spot.

A speedpass is elective, a system like this wont be. That's when it becomes an invasion of privacy.

And P.S. "that's why it'll never happen" has been said for alooooot of things before... Don't fool yourself into thinking its not possible.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By omnicronx on 7/2/2009 3:32:18 PM , Rating: 2
You do realize many insurance companies already offer such mileage trackers in exchange for a slightly lower rate?

RE: GPS tracking my car
By tastyratz on 7/2/2009 11:57:32 PM , Rating: 2
nope I didn't (although it probably doesn't really matter for rates much), but if they do that's fine with me... Elective privacy violation isn't a privacy violation... its volunteered information - and that's the difference. People are free to share what they want if they want and that's fine, my issue is mandatory sharing if you want it or not which is when its an invasions.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Mint on 7/3/2009 3:04:11 PM , Rating: 2
Not many, just a few, and just in a few states. There are plans to make it more widespread, so hopefully it will happen. The savings are substantial - 50% or more sometimes.

The incentive is definately there. If you can draw low risk customers away from other insurance companies, you've got a huge leg up on the competition. However, you don't want to draw high risk customers that know some garages able to tamper with the odometer and/or report false mileage numbers.

tastyratz, fraud is low right now because there isn't much incentive to tamper. Insurance companies are afraid of what might happen.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By lewisc on 7/6/2009 2:15:35 AM , Rating: 2
I actually had one of these 'tracked' policies in the UK. The insurance company installed a GPS unit in my car, leaving my insurance premium £800 lower than the next alternative. The premium was purely to do with the car's value and my age, rather than any previous bad behaviour on my part.

The basis was to see how regularly, as a young driver, I was using my car late at night, when I was statistically more likely to have an accident. Living in London, I had no need really to use my car at night, using it instead mostly for work, shopping and at the weekend.

So, both parties won. I had much, much lower premiums because of the tracker and the insurance company had reassurance that I wasn't going for midnight drunken rampages through the streets.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By SuperFly03 on 7/2/2009 6:33:22 PM , Rating: 1
I agree the government can go fuck themselves. I'm not letting them track me jut so they can tax me (yeah like that is all they will do).

Plus, is this now added to your tax bill at the end of the year so that people have to save to pay it or are you going to bill me monthly?

So we are going from a pay as you go tax where there is no fore thought to a system that requires additional tax planning. Fucking brilliant.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By MrPeabody on 7/2/2009 1:06:27 PM , Rating: 5
I've got a better idea: How about we don't tax by the mile? Eh? Eh?

RE: GPS tracking my car
By phantom505 on 7/2/2009 4:07:00 PM , Rating: 2
That's easily said but we have this strange notion in this country that if you use it you have to pay for it. So, if you don't want to pay for roads and bridges, then don't use them, and therefore you don't pay the tax.

The whole idea here is to come up with a taxation system so people with extremely efficient cars are still paying tax on the road work.

Believe it or not, but the taxes you pay on fuel is for road repair/building not to scare you into being efficient... in the US at least.

GPS is a horrible idea though. Odometer records are sufficient. I think they will have to regionally adjust though. The Southwest averages higher mileage than the Northeast by far.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Spuke on 7/2/2009 5:13:23 PM , Rating: 2
I think they will have to regionally adjust though. The Southwest averages higher mileage than the Northeast by far.
Nope. We'll just get charged the same as everyone else and since we drive more, we pay more. So California, once again, will be the center of the governments anal probes. What's spanish for hubajube?

RE: GPS tracking my car
By MonkeyPaw on 7/2/2009 5:23:02 PM , Rating: 3
I always thought the fuel tax was the best solution. If your vehicle uses more gas, then chances are your vehicle is heavier (or you're towing something). Heavier vehicles put more wear on roads, and consequently should pay more to maintain them through gas taxes. Taxing miles is a terrible way, as 50,000 miles on a Yaris would cost just as much as 50,000 miles on a Suburban that towed a boat around half the time.

Lastly, my bet is they'll try to tax both. The government never seems to get rid of taxes, but they always find ways to come up with new ones. Never vote for new taxes--they'll be here forever, no matter how temporary they are promised to be.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Souka on 7/2/2009 7:55:02 PM , Rating: 2
well, your argument is valid...and what I was thinking...but cost between yaris and surban isnt' the same.
Surban uses more fuel..and hence, pays more tax...perhaps to equate to added wear/tear on roads and environmental dammage costs...

But I firmly belive keeping the taxes in the fuel cost, not the mileage, will help push for more fuel-efficient vehicles. Buy introducing a mileage tax, this keeps gas-tax down, and as a result will reduce the need to become more efficient with our MPG.

I'm willing to bet the Republicans is pushing for such ideas...makes sense...afterall, putting more air in our tires won't solve the fuel crisis...

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Salviati on 7/3/2009 1:29:15 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, the surburban is going to pay more tax than the yaris, but not NEARLY enough to cover the additional wear on the roads it causes... I've got another post that goes into more detail, but when you do the math, it's the heavy SUV's that aren't pulling their weight so to speak, to a much greater extent than any hybriid...

RE: GPS tracking my car
By taisingera on 7/2/2009 2:08:10 PM , Rating: 1
If they enforce this, and the road conditions improve, then road construction workers will be out of work. That's right cut some more jobs. I am so pissed off with the incompetence and greed of this government.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By omnicronx on 7/2/2009 3:48:29 PM , Rating: 2
Did you even read the article? Or did you just read the word 'TAX' and formed an opinion?

If people are not buying as much gas, states/cities/municipalities (not sure who actually gets the money) lose a source of income, meaning road conditions will get worse as they will not be able to pay for repairs. Thus construction workers won't have jobs as there is no money to fix the problems. Nobody ever said it would improve road conditions, it likely won't, but they surely will get worse if less money is being put into them. (which should be common sense)

I don't agree with a per/mile tax but I do think something has to be done. Your statement is completely off base though, doing nothing will cost more jobs.(if that is really what you are worried about here)

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Jeffk464 on 7/2/2009 8:30:25 PM , Rating: 2
"Did you even read the article? Or did you just read the word 'TAX' and formed an opinion?"

Lol this is how I vote, if I see the word tax then I vote no. Unfortunately now they are wording propositions so they sound like they are for a tax cut when its actually a hike.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Chocobollz on 7/4/2009 1:37:02 PM , Rating: 1
Then go make your own country so you don't have to be taxed, it's that simple.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By menace on 7/2/2009 5:35:34 PM , Rating: 2
Actually a GPS is not needed, they only have to certify your car mileage once a year and make sure your mileage count is not altered (a sealed hack-proof mileage counter) and voila: tax per mile.

Whatever kind of device, there really is no practical way to phase it in. In one day they are gonna declare by fiat that every vehicle shall have this device and there are gonna be 500 million of them made available or shipped to your home at that time? How do you phase it in without double taxing some folks? Maybe you can have some system whereby if you get a device before it has been fully incorporated in every vehicle that you get a card you can scan to get credits back for the fuel tax you've paid or somehow the gas pump recognizes the card (hack-proof?) and doesn't add in the tax.

Their current plan is to replace an 18.5 cents a gallon pump tax with a 1 to 2 cents per mile tax for cars and light trucks.

Don't you just love it, average car now gets 25 mpg so effectively the 18.5 cent tax gets replaced by a 25 to 50 cent tax. A "progressive" tax (hitting the gas guzzlers hardest) getting replaced by a flat tax? Or is it a flat tax getting replace by a regressive tax? Depends on how you look at it I guess. If I drive a 10,000 lb F-250 that doesn't do more road wear than a 2,000 lb Aveo?

RE: GPS tracking my car
By ggordonliddy on 7/5/2009 1:28:04 PM , Rating: 2
There are countrys

What are "countrys"?

RE: GPS tracking my car
By RandallMoore on 7/2/2009 12:09:10 PM , Rating: 5
Since you don't agree with big brother, they have also enacted a new "don't question the government tax". Every time you wonder if they are gaining too much power, you are to give the IRS all of your money plus 1 dollar.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By UprightGuy on 7/2/2009 12:13:42 PM , Rating: 3
Just like the Sin taxes. Politicians see it as new revenue but when it gets high enough people kick the habit and then there revenue drops and they begin looking for new revenue. The government seems to want more and more of my money.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By MrPeabody on 7/2/2009 1:46:00 PM , Rating: 5
Money? Pfft. Money is just a tasty icing on the Cake of Power.

A gas tax is relatively indiscriminate. Therefore, it's relatively fair. But think of the games a politician can play with this new GPS-centric tax!

Maybe, as a politician, I need to pander to teachers. Maybe I introduce a bill that allows certain public sector workers to disable the GPS on cars they use for work-related transportation. Or maybe I need more votes from the aged demographic. Over 65? No more active GPS tracking for you, and I'm running commercials that say I'm responsible for your windfall.

You cannot play those games with a fuel tax. You can play those games with a per-mile tax. Play the game, win the power.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By bjacobson on 7/2/2009 2:18:07 PM , Rating: 2
Why so surprised?

RE: GPS tracking my car
By walk2k on 7/2/2009 12:38:02 PM , Rating: 2
Tinfoil hat conspiracy aside, I don't see this as economically feasible. How much is it going to cost to install GPS devices in every vehicle, record all that data, and inspect them to make sure they aren't tampered with (ie how easy will it be to remove my GPS and leave it in the garage...)

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Oregonian2 on 7/2/2009 1:21:58 PM , Rating: 3
Seeing as how we currently have roughly a per-mile gas tax now ("error" being inequitable gas mileage in cars) with basically zero per-user overhead, having people buy a GPS for their car, the infrastructure to have one's car database downloaded into a central database (copy to the Feds for homeland security), etc all can be done in the name of jobs creation!

P.S. - I think it's a pet-project of my state's idiot governor (costs be damned on most anything). Sigh....

P.P.S. - They could double the gas taxes now such that if it were phased in over a year's time in monthly increments, it'd not be noticed (for what it is).

RE: GPS tracking my car
By stilltrying on 7/2/2009 5:24:09 PM , Rating: 2
Tin foil hat conspiracy or coincidence theory. Which one do you believe. The bankers run the world. After they were assigned the powers to prevent the current economic conditions (fedral reserve) and the one in the great depression, the stuff still happens and now they are wanting more power to basically dictate everything you do financially and getting the govt to go along with a gps based mileage tax. Coincidence eh. Reread the declaration of independence. Pretty soon everyone will wake up to the fact that they are already a slave.
tell me you are free. start up your buisness without any licenses, permits, building codes, property tax, etc...

RE: GPS tracking my car
By stilltrying on 7/2/2009 5:27:09 PM , Rating: 2
also get ready for the push to have rfid chips put into you. i assure you it is coming and even joe biden said so as well. conspiracy theory eh.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By randomposter on 7/2/2009 12:39:17 PM , Rating: 1
Seems to me the government is amply able to force you to affix a license plate to your car, so I'm going to go ahead and assume that if they decide to force you to affix a GPS unit you'll really have no choice but to play ball.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By strikeback03 on 7/2/2009 1:41:57 PM , Rating: 2
Unless the GPS device is something similarly large and obvious on the exterior, then it will be far easier to tamper with than a license plate.

They don't consider the factor that the more fuel-efficient cars are generally lighter weight than less fuel-efficient ones, and therefore cause less stress to the roads?

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Jimbo1234 on 7/2/2009 2:07:25 PM , Rating: 2
Politicians never never been accused of being smart, and they've never been guilty of it. They want us driving less, driving more fuel efficient cars, and then penalizing us for it at the same time.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By omnicronx on 7/2/2009 4:25:47 PM , Rating: 2
Boo hoo! While the GPS portion is complete BS, the main idea is not. Roads and infrastructure need to be built/fixed, and by using less gas you are no longer paying your fair share of taxes to use said roads. If you don't want to be taxed, don't drive, otherwise you are just paying your fair share.

I don't really agree with the current plan, and I don't see why they just don't add on a fixed cost to all drivers when they renew their license, but the fact remains that roads need to be maintained.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By SuperFly03 on 7/2/2009 6:42:20 PM , Rating: 2
Good... add more taxes to aid our fiscally irresponsible government.

So banks got smaller and shed jobs... why doesn't the government? Oh right... they can just bend us over with new taxes to cover their asses.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By TheSpaniard on 7/2/2009 4:12:49 PM , Rating: 2
someone mentioned tin foil hat theorys....

mine is a tin foil hat for the GPS unit :)

RE: GPS tracking my car
By knutjb on 7/2/2009 7:23:19 PM , Rating: 2
You're missing the governments bait and switch. The method of how they track it is a separate subject of ulterior motives. IT'S TAXES, they have done the math and that's where the quickest path to your wallet is. 1-2 cents per mile sounds benign to the 18.4 cents per gallon. At a penny per mile if you get an average greater than 18.4 MPG you are paying more in taxes. Then they will compensate for cutting per gallon Fed tax with a per gallon carbon tax. So much for no new taxes on those making under $250K.

If the Fed kills gas taxes in-lieu of taxing by the mile the states will jump on it too. Why do you think Oregon is looking to do it, they also tried to increase tax on beer by 2000%, yes 2000%.

Gas tax was originally meant to fund building and upkeep of roads, a fair use. Once someone figured out that if you add a penny per gallon and send it to another fund you soon have a massive cash pile. Then they moved all the funds to the general fund and the gas tax has been funding everything BUT roads ever since.


RE: GPS tracking my car
By someguy743 on 7/2/2009 7:35:32 PM , Rating: 2
This is a stupid idea. It's the main idea of ELECTRIFYING the auto fleet in America to GET US OFF OF GASOLINE ? ... for all the usual reasons like energy independence, less overall energy waste, more efficient transportation technology, not sending $700 billion overseas to foreign petrodictators, cutting down on CO2 and other pollution, less "noise pollution", etc.

Gasoline should continue to be taxed. Maybe they should raise the "gas guzzler tax" to help raise more money for roads and bridges. The government shouldn't be doing ANYTHING to slow down the electrification of the auto fleet ... anywhere in the world.

If anything, the government should get rid of ALL federal, state, and local taxes for people that are going to pay a good bit of money to buy cars like the Chevy Volt in 2011. The more incentives the better. The more Chevy Volt that get built, the more battery factories get built, more battery R&D, etc. This will make cars like the Volt cheaper every year ... a lot like how HDTV prices started high and got cheaper every year.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By Flunk on 7/4/2009 4:00:23 PM , Rating: 2
If you drive a recent GM product or BMW you already have a GPS transponder. All of them have one, some other brands as well but those 2 came to mind.

Have you ever heard of OnStar? Yeah, a GPS transponder is part of that.

RE: GPS tracking my car
By someguy743 on 7/5/2009 10:46:18 AM , Rating: 2
There should be HUGE incentives to get people OUT of their gas guzzler cars and into the latest and greatest "electrified vehicles" like the Prius and the Chevy Volt. Tax the CO2 polluting gas guzzlers that enrich the fatcat sheik petrodictators!

Make the "gas guzzler owners" feel the pain at the pump of high gas prices and high gasoline taxes while people with the latest electrified cars laugh as they drive PAST the gas stations. :)

Cars like the Chevy Volt should be EXEMPT from ALL federal, state, and local taxes ... except for the gasoline taxes I guess. We want to make sure Volt owners are plugging in their Volt as much as possible.

The Volt is going to be a revolutionary car. It will change the whole transportation world. It'll be a good performing car too. 0-60 mph in under 8 seconds maybe ... if you have it in "sport mode" or whatever. Some Volt owners who only drive under 40 miles per day will use ZERO gasoline. Others will probably only have to fill up the Volt gasoline tank every 2 MONTHS or so ... unless they are going on a long trip.

Oh for f***'s sake...
By therealnickdanger on 7/2/2009 11:46:39 AM , Rating: 3
Stop this sh*t. So many factors go into the wear and tear of a road, it's hardly justification to tax based upon distance traveled.

It was a good day, but now I'm pissed.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By icrf on 7/2/2009 12:11:52 PM , Rating: 5
One solution is to raise the gas taxes -- but this is something consumers don't like, and many argue it is unfair to certain vehicle classes like heavy trucks.

Heavy trucks do substantially more damage to roads than light cars. Metric shit tons more damage. The fuel tax is really pretty damn good. Heavy vehicles do more damage and consume more fuel and pay more taxes. So what if my 1985 Celica uses more fuel than a 2005 Prius, but has comparable road impact. Quit bloody whining.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By FITCamaro on 7/2/2009 12:23:35 PM , Rating: 2
How about you get your head out of your ass and read. Your post in no way addresses what he said. He was arguing against a per mile tax which would favor heavy trucks since it wouldn't take weight into account if they only had one rate.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By Keeir on 7/2/2009 7:34:11 PM , Rating: 2
He was arguing against a per mile tax which would favor heavy trucks since it wouldn't take weight into account if they only had one rate.

Come now, this is the US government we are talking about. I am sure there would be a 50 page set of rules governing the per mileage rate charged to a person with income exceptions, etc.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By Spuke on 7/2/2009 2:29:47 PM , Rating: 2
The fuel tax is really pretty damn good. Heavy vehicles do more damage and consume more fuel and pay more taxes.
Which the trucking companies will promptly charge more for deliveries, in turn making the companies receiving supplies increase their costs, and we get to pay twice for this new tax by way of increased cost of goods.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By martinw on 7/2/2009 2:57:54 PM , Rating: 2
Which the trucking companies will promptly charge more for deliveries, in turn making the companies receiving supplies increase their costs, and we get to pay twice for this new tax by way of increased cost of goods.

That's not really a good argument. You may be paying towards the same tax twice, but it is for different things, once for your own driving, once for having something you purchased transported to you. If trucks are not paying their fair share given the road damage they cause, it is more fair to increase their charge and have it trickle through the system based on usage rather than having everyone else effectively subsidize the trucking industry.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By Spuke on 7/2/2009 5:23:58 PM , Rating: 2
have it trickle through the system based on usage rather than having everyone else effectively subsidize the trucking industry.
Wasn't making an argument, I was telling you what's going to happen. trucking companies already pay their fair share simply because they drive more and spend more for gas. And since that extra gas is taxed, they are taxed more. There are no subsidies for them.

What the government is proposing is charging them even MORE on top of what they are already paying. Yeah, yeah the intent is to charge more to fuel efficient cars but it's the trucking industry that will be the one's paying more. And those costs WILL be transferred over to the consumer. If you don't mind paying extra for your stuff, that's cool with me. I can afford it regardless but not everyone will be able to do that.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By Jeffk464 on 7/2/2009 8:41:24 PM , Rating: 2
The government taxes the hell out of truck and every road toll is roughly tripled.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By sinful on 7/2/2009 6:08:37 PM , Rating: 2
Which the trucking companies will promptly charge more for deliveries, in turn making the companies receiving supplies increase their costs, and we get to pay twice for this new tax by way of increased cost of goods.

Of course, the other effect of that is that locally made products will become more attractive as they will have lower shipping costs.

i.e. if a Chinese made good costs $200 and $50 to ship, but an American made good costs $220 and $20 to ship then the American made products come out ahead ($240 vs. $250) despite paying higher wages for the American worker.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By Spuke on 7/2/2009 6:23:35 PM , Rating: 2
if a Chinese made good costs $200 and $50 to ship
Last time I checked, Chinese goods weren't delivered by truck.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By zxern on 7/2/2009 6:43:28 PM , Rating: 2
So how do they get to the stores from the dock?

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By Spuke on 7/2/2009 6:59:22 PM , Rating: 2
So how do they get to the stores from the dock?
How are they necessarily going to pay more in taxes than any other product getting shipped from a dock? Do you realize that US goods are shipped into varies ports around the country too? This policy doesn't just add taxes to foreign countries, it also adds more taxes to US made goods made in other parts of the country too. Duh!

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By Keeir on 7/2/2009 7:37:13 PM , Rating: 2
I think by "locally" made, The poster was implying that your own region of American would be able to better supply itself. However, since a large percentage of Americans live very near a port, I think it would have the opposite effect.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By elgueroloco on 7/6/2009 8:46:25 AM , Rating: 2
Which the trucking companies will promptly charge more for deliveries... and we get to pay twice for this new tax by way of increased cost of goods.

You would actually pay less for transportation of goods under this new tax.

A tractor-trailer gets about 4 miles/gallon. At 18.5 cents/gal of fuel tax, that is about 4.63 cents/mile. This new tax is supposed to be 1 or 2 cents/mile. Less than half what trucks are paying now. This would actually be a boon to trucking. Truckers would also not care about the trackers since they've all got big brother boxes in their tractors anyway.

I honestly can't see this being implemented without a different, higher rate for heavy trucks.

I don't have such a problem with the mileage tax, but I'll be damned if I'm ever gonna let the gov't put a tracker in my car. I say just leave the gas tax as it is.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By rcc on 7/2/2009 3:43:53 PM , Rating: 2
Unfortunately, the Prius probably does more road damage because of higher ground loading. Unless you have bicycle tires on your Celica.

: )

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By wempa on 7/2/2009 12:17:19 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed. Also, do they plan on taking the vehicle weight, tires and other such factors into consideration ? It doesn't make sense for a car to pay the same rate per mile as an 18 wheeler truck.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By Fritzr on 7/2/2009 1:04:15 PM , Rating: 2
It would make perfect sense to have tiered rates for GVW.

The tricky points are going to be interstate travel. For example a person who travels 30 miles to work ... 15 miles the other side of the state line. 15 miles of the drive in State A & 15 miles in State B. How is his mileage tax computed? Especially if he lives in State A which still uses a gas tax and "visits" State B which uses the new GPS based mileage tax :)

Interstate trucking is easier. Large trucks are required to stop at the scales when entering a state. All that is necessary is to record their odometer mileage on entry and at exit and pay mileage tax on the difference. One scale at each stateline would be sufficient. Just keep seperate tax accounts for the two states on either side of the line the scale is serving.

This would have the added advantage for the government of allowing enforcement of the weighin rules for trucks. If a trucker evades the scales then he has no entry stamp for the state, Random checks of paperwork with severe penalties for illegal entry will keep most drivers honest.

For vehicles that are not required to cross the scales, you could have electronic odometer readers at the stateline. These would record the license plate number and odometer mileage. If your vehicle is not equipped with the transponder then you go through the manual check line.

Each state would then send the bill for out of state registrations to the DMV of the vehicles homestate who will then send a consolidated bill to the registered owner. International registrations would go through the manual line and pay the mileage tax when leaving the state.

As soon as this is implememnted you will see farm lanes and a lot of other forgotten roads that cross state lines becoming very popular :P

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By Solandri on 7/2/2009 1:39:07 PM , Rating: 2
The problem is, virtually all the damage to roads comes from heavy trucks. If you've ever been on a 3, 4, or 5-lane highway, the right 2 lanes are always crap compared to the others. That's because trucks are only allowed in those lanes. Their greater weight loading per area stresses and flexes the road causing it to crack and break, and creates fissures where water can create potholes when it freezes. You can design a road so it doesn't crack like this under the weight of cars. But trucks weigh so much more that it's impractical to do the same for them.

The trucking industry is essentially subsidized by the gas taxes paid by cars. It's what's caused the rail industry in this country to shrivel and almost die (rail is the most energy efficient method of travel man has invented). Cars help pay for part of the operating costs of trucks (highway maintenance), so the cost of trucking is artificially lowered compared to rail, making it tough for rail to compete.

Raising gas taxes actually would be completely neutral in this regard since it wouldn't change the ratio of road maintenance paid by trucks vs. cars. A fairer solution would actually be for trucks to have higher gas taxes than cars, higher enough to compensate for the additional damage they do to roads. Switching to a system which favors trucks even more is just plain stupid. We need trucking to become less attractive so market forces will favor more efficient transport like rail on the long-haul routes.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By rcc on 7/2/2009 3:53:27 PM , Rating: 2
In the US trucks are supposedly restricted to the right 2 lanes. When I was a kid the road surface was 50% thicker in those lanes to handle the load.

No idea what they are doing today, since they are letting the contractors run wild.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By Keeir on 7/2/2009 7:41:53 PM , Rating: 2
In the US trucks are supposedly restricted to the right 2 lanes. When I was a kid the road surface was 50% thicker in those lanes to handle the load.

The problem has to do with Thermal Expansion. In most parts of the US, making a road thicker does not increase its lifespan dramatically since a thicker the road the more thermal expansion damage can occur. So they try to make roads more resistant to damage from trucks, but its a tall order of balancing different requirements, materials, and costs.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By lagomorpha on 7/3/2009 5:54:18 PM , Rating: 2
(rail is the most energy efficient method of travel man has invented)

From a class on transportation a few years back I seem to recall pipeline being the cheapest per ton/mile though there are limits on what you can ship by pipeline (it wasn't that long ago they figured how how to ship coal by pipeline).

Trains are many times cheaper per ton/mile when compared to trucks though. And that's just the maintenance/drivers/fuel that companies actually have to pay. If truckers actually had to pay for damage to the roads then rail would REALLY start to shine (not to mention how many road deaths trucks cause). Unfortunately the truckers union is has an absurd amount of power in the government.

Taxing my 370 lbs motorcycle the same rate for road use as an 80,000 lbs truck is retarded. There is a reason truckers have to stop at weigh stations, many will overload trucks knowingly causing massive road damage in order to make a little more money themselves.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By PlasmaBomb on 7/2/2009 12:20:26 PM , Rating: 2
It's just an excuse to tax you more. Trust me I know all about it.

In the UK if it exists you must tax it!

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By walk2k on 7/2/2009 12:35:07 PM , Rating: 5
If you drive he'll tax the street.
If you walk he'll tax your feet.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By captainpierce on 7/2/2009 4:25:50 PM , Rating: 2
If you drive he'll tax the street.
If you walk he'll tax your feet.

A road tax, King Einon. A road tax.

Ingenious Felton. Only you could keep such a good idea under such a bad hat.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By FITCamaro on 7/2/2009 12:28:07 PM , Rating: 3
Have you done the math on this? (I'm agreeing with you btw)

At a 1 cent per mile tax, for 12,000 miles it would come out to $120 a year at 20 mpg as opposed to $111 in current gas taxes. So not to big a difference. But at 2 cents per mile that doubles it so you're paying more than twice as much as you used to.

Now I'll agree that roads are a vital part of our countries infrastructure and need to be maintained. However if our politicians would stop wasting so much money on BS entitlement programs and other spending, they'd have the money to maintain and improve them. If they'd left the highway trust fund alone, instead of borrowing against it like they've done with Social Security and Medicare trust funds (which have nothing but a bunch of IOUs in them), they'd have the money to maintain and improve them.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By ClownPuncher on 7/2/2009 12:40:20 PM , Rating: 2
With enough taxes, I will have to eat grass and bark like some North Koreans do. More fiber in my diet couldn't hurt...could it?

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By shazbotron on 7/2/2009 1:10:28 PM , Rating: 5
Quote from Orange County Shopper:

... These recent changes in the attitude toward usage base taxation give credence to rumors of a newly proposed Biological Waste Processing Tax by Representative Henry Waxman which requires a permanent inventory of bowel movement length.

"In order to determine the level of our nation's solar energy that has been used to generate your orally consumed biofuel, citizens will keep a log [sic] of their excretions by length in order to determine the taxable rate for citizens. The defecation process will be taxed at a per meter rate, in an effort to begin the transition for the United States to the metric system."
- [Bill 5301 Section 7 Paragraph 9]

In addition, the bill contains a provision whereby stool samples must be sent in to a newly proposed $5 billion Waste Analysis Center in Waxman's state of California for processing in order to determine the composition of your comestibles.

Representative Waxman justifies this as vegetable sources require less energy than fleshly sources and so should be taxed at a different rate.

In an exclusive interview with the Herald Tribune Waxman hinted at a number of other taxation methods that had come up in committee.

"In discussing this and other alternative taxation methods we considered the possibility of taxation by weight but we determined that this would place an onerous burden on our citizens to handle their own [expletive deleted]."

Questions still remain regarding the bill as citizens question methods for circumvention or how the bill addresses those with special needs. Thomas Arco, a medical professional at the prestigious Bowel Disease Clinic, wondered how the bill would address those who suffer from loose stool, constipation or fecophobia.

"Though Representative Waxman clearly has no dearth of feces, and is readily available and willing to measure, handle and distribute his own waste, there are those who suffer from specialized gastro-intestinal disorders that would have difficulty complying with this bill.

Each year in the United States over 5000 people die from diarrhea and as anyone who has food poisoning can attest, length does not apply. In addition, falsified records, constipation, or a number of eating disorders, such as bulimia, can greatly affect where and when waste is excreted."

In a prepared statement the Obama administration said that they "supported Rep. Waxman's attempt to ensure an equitable distribution of the cost's of waste management. Too long have the the American people been forced to foot the bill for those who consume valuable sewage resources. This bill will secure hope for generations to come that everyone pays for their own [expletive deleted.]"

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was unavailable for comment, though clearly well qualified to discuss the topic.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By ClownPuncher on 7/2/2009 2:28:01 PM , Rating: 2
Well played.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By maverick85wd on 7/3/2009 6:15:06 AM , Rating: 2
thanks, that's one of the funniest things I've read in days!

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By jconan on 7/2/2009 9:33:48 PM , Rating: 2
to cut down on obesity why doesn't the government tax the sewage coming out from each household, more tax on those that dump more sewage???

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By omnicronx on 7/2/2009 5:15:59 PM , Rating: 2
While all of what you said is true, I don't see how this has any baring on the matter. You already get taxed based on fuel consumption, not how much damage you actually do to the road, so the system is already flawed in that respect. So while this may have been a valid argument when the law was originally passed, the time to complain about it has long passed.

Furthermore, moving the costs onto large trucks is not going to help you in the long run either, as the raising gas prices showed us earlier this year. If it costs more to ship, then the goods being shipped will also raise in price. You would probably lose more money in food than you would save by them shifting the taxes to larger vehicles.

RE: Oh for f***'s sake...
By lagomorpha on 7/3/2009 6:01:13 PM , Rating: 2
"You would probably lose more money in food than you would save by them shifting the taxes to larger vehicles."

The point is that you'd be paying closer to the real cost for what you do/consume. If it's cheaper to drive and more expensive to eat thing that have to be shipped long distances by truck then you will be able to drive more and eat fewer things that have to be shipped long distance by truck. It's similar to the basis for capitalism. Taxing things in a way that upsets this system can potentially make the economy less efficient.

It will only get worse
By KeithP on 7/2/2009 12:12:00 PM , Rating: 5
So if I am driving a 3000 lb. car I pay the same tax per mile as someone driving a 4500 lb. truck? I guess that makes sense. Weight has no effect on the wear and tear on the road right?

And of course, lets not forget the reason we have a gas tax in the first place. Because the taxes going into the general fund, which should be plenty to cover this sort of thing, are going to a bunch of crap programs that we shouldn't have and don't need.

More and more people in this country think the government has the answer to all our problems. This is only going to get worse. Idiots elect idiots.


RE: It will only get worse
By Laereom on 7/2/2009 12:45:05 PM , Rating: 3
I find it ironic that more fuel efficient vehicles are considered a problem. -Generally-, the more fuel efficient it is, the less it's going to weigh, and thus the less damage it's going to do to the road. Until that relationship starts to phase out in a real way, I think that it's a no-brainer that we -are- getting a pretty decent estimate of wear and tear through the pump.

And yeah, I agree on the increasingly statist views of the general populace. It's really ironic...Government, by its very nature, -cannot- solve problems -- it can only shift the burden of who has to solve problems via taxation and regulation.

RE: It will only get worse
By Yawgm0th on 7/2/2009 1:45:57 PM , Rating: 3
The problem is that fuel efficiency and weight/road damaging are starting to phase out. Hybrid SUVs are getting to be as efficient as non-hybrid sedans at half the weight. Nevermind sports cars.

That said, the correlation between road damage and gas usage is still probably (I sure as hell am not doing the research on this) higher than the correlation between miles driven and road damage. Coming up with a miles driven per pound system would be the only "fair" system, but that involves some arbitrary math and (like this) intrusive mileage tracking.

Frankly I am satisfied with the current model. It does put a heavier burden on less efficient vehicles, but that's how it has to work. Taxes are inherently going to put a heavier burden on one group no matter what. In this case, it puts the burden on people to drive more fuel efficient cars. The societal benefits to this are obvious (regardless of AGW and carbon emissions).

There will always be the argument that it's not government's place to do this to the economy, but I'd rather see economic disincentives for inefficient vehicles than an intrusive mileage tracking system.

RE: It will only get worse
By Bateluer on 7/2/2009 1:00:15 PM , Rating: 5
Give me 5 years of full political power to anything and everything I want and I'll have the total federal government expenditures under 1 trillion dollars, strip them of their power to micromanage citizens, and restore the government to the framer's original intent.

Vote Bateluer in 2012!

RE: It will only get worse
By PhoenixKnight on 7/2/2009 2:57:28 PM , Rating: 2
I, for one, welcome our new Bateluer overlord.

RE: It will only get worse
By martinw on 7/2/2009 1:05:46 PM , Rating: 2
To be precise, the relationship between weight and road damage is a cubic one, ie doubling the vehicle weight increases road damage 8 times. So the wear and tear argument really doesn't hold up - switching to a more efficient (usually lighter) vehicle is likely to reduce overall wear and tear far more than the greater distance driven will increase it. So any per-mile charge will reduce incentives to move to more efficient lighter vehicles, leading to greater road damange overall.

RE: It will only get worse
By rcc on 7/2/2009 3:51:07 PM , Rating: 2
You also have to consider ground loading, or weight per square inch/meter, etc.

Hybrids like the Prius are actually heavy for their size (batteries), and have narrow tires for less drag (mileage). So it's actually going to do more phyical road damage than a heavier/larger car with wide performance tires. Depending on driving habits of course. : )

RE: It will only get worse
By martinw on 7/2/2009 5:36:24 PM , Rating: 2
Hybrids like the Prius are actually heavy for their size (batteries)

The Prius batteries weigh around 100 pounds, the car itself weights 3000 pounds, so the battery weight is an insignificant factor. Maybe you are thinking of all-electic cars that must have much larger (heavier) batteries.

RE: It will only get worse
By rcc on 7/2/2009 5:52:31 PM , Rating: 2
Still applies. At 3000# the Prius is as heavy as my T-bird, a larger car. And the t-bird has close to double the tire road contact.

I double checked on the battery, it's somewhat more than 100#, but not enough to make the difference; must be the total hybrid drive package. Thanks for the correction.

RE: It will only get worse
By zxern on 7/2/2009 6:42:38 PM , Rating: 2
Meh it doesn't really matter. The damage either does is insignificant next to the damage an 80,000# truck does.

RE: It will only get worse
By HotFoot on 7/2/2009 5:02:19 PM , Rating: 2
I couldn't vote you up any more than you already were, so I'm just posting my agreement with you.

Mileage Tax
By To much Common Sense on 7/2/2009 12:02:58 PM , Rating: 3
What would be the reason to by fuel efficient cars if your charged on mileage?

RE: Mileage Tax
By bigjaicher on 7/2/2009 12:24:58 PM , Rating: 2
You don't understand. Even if there is no reason, in the next few years, you will have to buy a fuel efficient car because of miles per gallon standards.

And for most adults as of now, there is no reason to buy a new car if they already own one. Cars can last upwards of fifteen years in great shape if you consistently change their oil. Reasons (that are not necessarily reasonable) that I can think of are:
-it's trendy
-I'm saving the planet!
-I want a sleek new car to replace my three year old BMW
-I need a new car to replace my totaled/dead/without air-conditioning and CD player car (the only sane reason)

Charging on mileage using a GPS is an invasion of my privacy. It seems to me as if the Republicans and Democrats are the same thing when it comes to my privacy - just that the first ignores it for the benefit of country, while the second ignores it for the benefit of the people.

RE: Mileage Tax
By Laereom on 7/2/2009 12:31:21 PM , Rating: 2
Or they both ignore it for the benefit of stroking their own egos. Politicians in this country are more or less all the same; they want more control over people's lives. Sure, some want more power to throw around the military and control people's personal lives (no dudes humping dudes, now!), and some just want to control the crap out of every economic interaction that ever occurs, but the motivation, in the end, seems to be the same to me: They have a massive streak of hubris that makes them think they know what is best for people.

RE: Mileage Tax
By DigitalFreak on 7/2/2009 12:53:43 PM , Rating: 4
Kill 'em all and let god sort them out.

RE: Mileage Tax
By Keeir on 7/2/2009 7:46:24 PM , Rating: 2
You don't understand. Even if there is no reason, in the next few years, you will have to buy a fuel efficient car because of miles per gallon standards.

Unfortunely no... in the next few years, Automakers will make it prohibitively expensive to buy anything but fuel efficient Autos. You will blame the Automaker, who is really just trying to avoid the fines the government would place on them if you the consumer purchased what you actually wanted (and they could produce).

RE: Mileage Tax
By SuperFly03 on 7/2/2009 6:45:23 PM , Rating: 1
If this bullshit passes and new cars are equipped... then I will be keeping my car until the day I die or I can't find parts anywhere for it.

milage tax
By klw1865 on 7/2/2009 11:50:19 AM , Rating: 2
I would have to wonder if this happens that the actual fuel tax would be repealed. What amount of fuel taxes would be lost (if the fuel tax is replaced with a per mileage tax) due to boats, lawn mowers, ATVs, off road vehiles, that all pay a fuel tax now but would not under a per mileage tax plan. I agree with the other posters, I DO NOT want the US govt. knowing where my car is 24/7, talk about invasion of privacy!

RE: milage tax
By siliconvideo on 7/2/2009 12:16:03 PM , Rating: 3
When was any tax repealed? The only way taxes go are up. Even toll roads keep their toll booths after the original bonds are paid off with the excuse that the toll money's go to upkeep. This is just another way for the government to tax the people.

RE: milage tax
By FITCamaro on 7/2/2009 12:34:45 PM , Rating: 1
Well personally I don't have a problem with toll roads as many can be privately owned. And I don't believe toll roads are maintained using federal funds.

RE: milage tax
By Jimbo1234 on 7/2/2009 2:18:18 PM , Rating: 2
So here's a question for the damn politicians:

Why I do I still have to pay a gas tax if I am driving on a toll road? And if they are privately owned, the speed limit should be nonexistent.

RE: milage tax
By FITCamaro on 7/2/2009 5:59:30 PM , Rating: 2
Good point...

RE: milage tax
By SublimeSimplicity on 7/2/2009 12:23:48 PM , Rating: 2
I would have to wonder if this happens, [would] the actual fuel tax would be repealed.

It is about as likely as me getting around the tax by using a flying carpet instead of a car.

By kattanna on 7/2/2009 12:21:21 PM , Rating: 2
doing some basic math here

$16,000,000 spent to study and equip 2700 cars.

thats $5,925.93 per each car

times the roughly 250 million cars on the road in the US

$1,486,529,380,740 dollars to equip all vehicles

so.. tell me again how this is going to increase tax revenues?

By Fritzr on 7/2/2009 12:41:43 PM , Rating: 2
Easy as pie.

Tax tracking equipment is required just like emissions equipment on newer cars.

You want to register your car, then you WILL make sure that all equipment required by law is installed and in good working order. For government there is no expense since you will be buying, installing & maintaining the equipment as well as paying an inspection fee to certify that it has been done. Future cars sold in US will have the equipment pre-installed as mandatory equipment. OnStar could be used for the GPS function. Already standard equipment in new GM cars.

GPS tracking & in car surveillance is already standard equipment in GM cars. All it takes to activate the equipment is a cooperative tech at an OnStar base station. Legally a court order is required for anything other than what the contract specifies. However the surveillance & location technology will work just as well without the court order. All that protects a GM owner is the honesty of the OnStar employees. Yes this is tinfoil hat territory, but OnStar is already used by police as a preinstalled audio bug. The OnStar system can be activated remotely with nothing to tell the driver that it is active.

By Jimbo1234 on 7/2/2009 2:22:43 PM , Rating: 3
The OnStar system can be activated remotely with nothing to tell the driver that it is active.

And that needs to change. There better be a light that turns on or some other indicator the second the comminication channel opens or else I'm never buying a car with it. Actually, since OnStar is only on GM products, I guess I never will have it.

By Spuke on 7/2/2009 3:06:28 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, since OnStar is only on GM products, I guess I never will have it.
When I bought my car, it was still an option which I did not purchase. It seems like everyday I have a new reason not to ever buy another new car again.

By Jimbo1234 on 7/2/2009 3:32:31 PM , Rating: 2
I agree. New cars are not getting any better from my viewpoint. I was not really impressed by anything at this years Chicago auto show. I went to a local dealer's show too and sat in a bunch of cars... didn't care for too many of them. 1/2 of them look like a spaceship with no consideration for asthetics or ergonomics.

On top of that, I was considering replacing my B5 S4 Avant, with something newer, and the new A6 Avant has only 2 cubic feet more cargo space than the old S4. The new A4/S4 has 1/2 of the old one. Go figure. Why would I be shopping for a wagon with less cargo space than the previous model? So there are a few more inches of legroom in the rear... woo-f*cking-hoo. I think I'm going to run my cars into the ground before replacing them.

Now that you got me going on that... I'm going to rant some more. The S4's 250hp, 256lb-ft Bi-Turbo V6 is supposedly ancient by now. The new 2.0T has similar figures, but in 6th gear at 2000 RPM, the S4 actually accelerates, and with some authority. The 2.0T... pfffft yawn. Hardly anything there. Sure I'm comparing top of the line to entry, but 8 years apart. Enough, I'm going out for a drive.

Origin of this report
By martinw on 7/2/2009 1:36:38 PM , Rating: 4
A few here seem to think this proposal is coming from the current administration. So just for clarification, the report was commissioned by a bipartisan congress committee in early 2007, the panel is made up of non-politicians, and today is the final publication of that report. There has been no government response yet as far as I can tell.

A summary of the report itself is here:

On reading through this, there is more than in the article posted here on dailytech. It appears there *is* a gas tax increase proposed - 10c, to bump it back up to the level it would have been if it had been indexed to inflation. The proposal also includes indexing this tax to adjust upwards with inflation. That is proposed to be introduced in the short term to bridge the gap until the per-mile charge can be introduced. The per-mile charge is on top of this and a longer term proposal.

Their argument against gas taxes is that the price signal is too weak since the tax amount is not explicit, and can be swamped by variation in total gas prices, so they claim it has little impact.

I'm not supporting the above, merely reporting it based on a quick reading of the above document.

RE: Origin of this report
By HotFoot on 7/2/2009 5:07:20 PM , Rating: 2
Their argument against gas taxes is that the price signal is too weak since the tax amount is not explicit, and can be swamped by variation in total gas prices, so they claim it has little impact.

This doesn't make sense. Do they mean they aim to reduce consumption by having gas tax? Because that's a new idea that wasn't around back when gas tax was introduced. Gas tax is to pay the bill for maintaining roads - that's it, and as it's a fixed amount per litre/gallon, what does the government care about the volatile price of gasoline? They get a revenue stream - close to - proportional to the usage rate of the roads.

RE: Origin of this report
By TheSpaniard on 7/2/2009 5:38:31 PM , Rating: 2
you didnt know they were trying to get you to drive less? really?

In other news...
By KIAman on 7/2/2009 1:11:48 PM , Rating: 3
Government announces to tax every breath of air we take. Because of the dwindling numbers of smokers due to advertisements and anti-smoking campaigns, there is not enough money coming in based on tobacco tax.

Instead, cigarette taxes will be dropped in favor of taxing 1-2 cents every 10 breaths we take. In order to track the breathing, everyone is required to implant a monitoring device under their skin which sends data to the government.

This is most likely going to please smokers but will anger non smokers...

RE: In other news...
By UprightGuy on 7/3/2009 12:23:54 PM , Rating: 2
Incorrect. The government will not tax the air we breath but rather tax the air we exhale as a carbon tax.

RE: In other news...
By lagomorpha on 7/3/2009 6:31:11 PM , Rating: 2
Don't give them ideas!

Road wear is extremely sensitie to axle weight
By Salviati on 7/3/2009 1:25:50 PM , Rating: 2
Studies have shown that the amount of road wear is proportional to the fourth power of axle weight, so (assumiing equal load distribution) a car that weights 2x as much causes 16x as much wear. By necessity all of these ultra fuel efficient vehicles are very lightweight, so dinging them for their "fair share" of road maintenance fees is a bit tricky. To compare the Prius with the Excursion, for example:

Excursion - 7200 lbs 10 mpg
Prius (3rd gen) - 3000 lbs 50 mpg
Malibu (2009) - 3400 lbs 26 mpg

Since the Excursions weights 2.4 times as much as the Prius, it causes (2.4)^4 as much wear, just over 33x as much wear on the road as the Prius. But with a simple gas tax, it only pays 5x as much for upkeep for each mile it has driven. The Prius owner is essentially subsidizing the owner of the Excursion by paying over 6.5 times as much tax relative to the amount of wear that it causes. The owner of the Prius is already paying well more than their fair share, as least as compared to SUVs.

Even compared to regular cars, relative to which the Prius is underpaying, they're not underpaying by nearly that amount. E.g. looking at the Malibu, it weighs 1.14 times as much as the Prius, and thus causes (1.14)^4 = 1.68 times as much wear, and in a simple gas tax scenario, it pays 1.92 times as much per mile as the Prius. So the Prius underpays compared to a normal car, but not by nearly as much as heavier cars underpay for the wear that they cause.

If everyone were to switch to high mileage, low weight vehicles, the costs for road maintenance would plummet.

Just for a simple comparison, handy facts to know when discussing who's _really_ underpaying for road maintinance

(Normalized to a Malibu)

A Prius should be paying .61x as much, but is only paying .52x so compared to a Malibu they are underpaying by 15%
An Excursion should be paying 20x as much but is only paying 2.6 times as much, so they are underpaying by 87%

So if someone gripes about how "those hybrids aren't paying their fair share", now you have some facts to fight back with.

It would be nice if the people writing such articles could be bothered to do a few simple calculations like this.

By lagomorpha on 7/3/2009 6:19:02 PM , Rating: 2
"Just for a simple comparison, handy facts to know when discussing who's _really_ underpaying for road maintinance"

For something even more dramatic...

Lightweight motorcycle with rider 500 lbs, 2 axles = 250 lbs/axle = 7,812,500,000 units of damage

Excursion 7200 lbs, 2 axles = 3,600lbs/axle = 335,923,200,000,000 units of damage

80,000 lbs 18 wheeler, 5 axles = 16,000 lbs/axle = 327,680,000,000,000,000 units of damage

One fully loaded 18 wheeler is the equivalent of 975.5 Excursions in road damage (or 41,943,040 motorcycles). Now who do you think is overpaying?

By lagomorpha on 7/3/2009 6:25:29 PM , Rating: 2
"Just for a simple comparison, handy facts to know when discussing who's _really_ underpaying for road maintinance"

For something even more dramatic...

Lightweight motorcycle with rider 500 lbs, 2 axles = 250 lbs/axle

Excursion 7200 lbs, 2 axles = 3,600lbs/axle

80,000 lbs 18 wheeler, 5 axles = 16,000 lbs/axle = 4.44 times, 390 times the damage per axle, 2.5x the number of axles = 975 times the damage total. For the motorcycle its 64x the weight/axle, 2.5x the number of axles.

One fully loaded 18 wheeler is the equivalent of 975.5 Excursions in road damage (or 41,943,040 motorcycles). Now who do you think is overpaying?

What about other vehicles?
By CZroe on 7/2/2009 12:30:52 PM , Rating: 2
I have a motorcycle that puts less wear and occupies less room on the roads in general and gets excellent fuel economy. Many people with the same bike as I have take their every-day "street bike" to the track for so-called "track days" where they can rack up hundreds of miles on a private race track. Some peopole do this with their cars too, but it is much more common to use your street vehicle on the track with motorcycles.

RE: What about other vehicles?
By FITCamaro on 7/2/2009 12:33:20 PM , Rating: 2
It also doesn't take into account offroading or people with large quantities of private land.

So who is it that takes care of the roads again?!?
By Targon on 7/2/2009 1:14:03 PM , Rating: 2
Why is the federal government involved in this in the first place when they are not maintaining any of the roads I am using? Over 99 percent of the travel that people do is on local, county, and state roads, so if that is the case, the federal government should only be getting ONE percent of the money that comes from gas or "travel" taxes. How about the whole tax system change so that our tax money goes to what we use instead of going to the federal government that is GIVING money away to other governments, or helping other countries recover from natural disasters when the government is broke.

If the US government is running at a deficit, then the government should not be spending ANY money to help others. When a person is wealthy, then helping others makes sense, but when someone is in debt, that person should NOT be making donations until he/she is out of debt. If the idiots in politics would finally wake up, maybe they would realize just how much money is being wasted on nothing.

By Lexda on 7/2/2009 4:50:49 PM , Rating: 2
Question: Ever hear of this wonderful system called "the interstate?" It's slightly expensive to create and maintain. And hey, that's all federal gov't. Say what you will about it, but I for one am glad I don't have to take a two lane everywhere I go.

Article is weirdly worded...
By Wierdo on 7/2/2009 1:48:58 PM , Rating: 2
The article makes this sound like a tax on hybrids, the rationale being that cheaper fuel means more travel apparently. I think that's a fallacious assertion: Sure hybird cars could let people travel more for less, but this is a tax on travel - not on the type of car used for that transportation.

There's no reason why a person with a gas guzzler can't travel a gazillion miles and end up paying more compared to someone with a hybrid that has travel patterns similar to those of a typical city dweller.

I don't like the part about tracking driving habits though, why doesn't this just get implemented on a federal level, then they can just track yearly odometer readings and tax based on that, then just generally split the tax revenue among individual states based on the roads they maintain?

RE: Article is weirdly worded...
By Wierdo on 7/2/2009 1:53:50 PM , Rating: 2
Also I should add that I agree with the previous poster about different cars - sixteen-wheeler vs mini-cooper - causing different kinds of load on the road, perhaps they would have to favor type/weight of vehicle into it if they're gonna replace the tax at the pump system with this one.

By The Gonz on 7/2/2009 4:13:24 PM , Rating: 2
I hate to try and bring logic to something the government is involved in but why not spend all those millions on creating stronger roads?

Seems like your bringing the water to the horse by creating some convoluted system here.

Make stronger, longer lasting roads. Problem Solved.

RE: Backwards
By lagomorpha on 7/3/2009 6:03:50 PM , Rating: 2
The road workers union won't like that. They won't even let us complete normal roads. They'd throw a massive fit if we actually tried to build lasting roads that would put many of them out of jobs.

Milage Tax
By To much Common Sense on 7/2/2009 4:51:30 PM , Rating: 2
I suspect the main reason politicians are looking for alternate means of getting gas tax revenue is that once electric cars start showing up in large numbers those vehicles will not be generating gas tax revenue. That would be one of the reasons I would consider buying one and to tell the Middle East Oil Cartell to enjoy their oil on their salads. Leave it to politicians to eliminate one way to justify the extra cost for an electric car.

RE: Milage Tax
By menace on 7/2/2009 5:41:18 PM , Rating: 2
If this were the case then why not just apply the new tax method ONLY to the electric vehicles. Then you would only have to install monitoring on those vehicles and save a ton of money trying to retrofit every vehicle with devices.

But why rush in to eliminate one advantage that may help give electric cars a boost. At least wait until they get at least a 10% market share established before you worry about it.

You know they wont get rid of the gas tax
By michal1980 on 7/2/2009 11:50:16 AM , Rating: 2
this will just be an add on.

I wonder if the aclu has problems with this, or becaue the lefty demo's, are behind it, its a-ok.

By FITCamaro on 7/2/2009 12:32:11 PM , Rating: 1
You already nailed it. The ACLU is a corrupt organization that protects illegals and takes away citizens rights.

I want to see proof!!!
By Emryse on 7/2/2009 7:21:44 PM , Rating: 1
Show me the cited references of studies proving that people who have more fuel efficient vehicles drive more miles than those who do not!

Could not agree less - people continue to drive about the same as they always do, but rather probably just pay more or less at the pump. In fact, gas prices are something people mostly bitch about, but mostly do nothing about.

Next I suppose you'll write an article on the amazing link between those who eat ice cream and increase chance of being struck by lightning and winning the lottery.


Oh - and this tax would be BULLS@*T and everyone knows it.

RE: I want to see proof!!!
By Emryse on 7/2/09, Rating: 0
RE: I want to see proof!!!
By Jeffk464 on 7/2/2009 7:57:41 PM , Rating: 2
I agree, plus the states gas tax fund is usually used to pay for everything under the sun except for road work. If the government would actually use the gas tax for what it was intended there would be no reason for this.

By AEvangel on 7/2/2009 11:59:16 AM , Rating: 2
I agree...this would be hard pressed to convince me to add a GPS to my car and if I did what would stop me from putting it on my 12 yr old dog in the back yard.

Well, sir it seems you only drove 3.4 miles this month but all of the mileage seem to have occurred around a tree in your back yard.

A better idea would be to just have to report your mileage when you registered the car and then you pay a tax bill based off that.

By chick0n on 7/2/2009 12:04:53 PM , Rating: 2
Like NYC, all the roads, yep, ALL OF THE FUXKING ROADS are fuxking god damn piece of $hit. Almost nONE of the roads in NYC are smooth/even. ALL of them have potholes here and there.

Paying taxes is fine, but I am not going to pay 1 penny if its like this. Whenever I pay for something, I expect some return. Not the way NYC/Bloomberg treat the roads.

So if they're going to apply this stupid ass tax to NYC. Im sure I will either move out or protest it all I can.

By Marlonsm on 7/2/2009 12:06:31 PM , Rating: 2 they can't be sure they won't be.

Big Brother
By shabodah on 7/2/2009 12:21:36 PM , Rating: 2
Seems like they don't have a clue, and yet, they run the country. Drives me nuts.

Anyway, I'm totally against being forced a GPS, and if wear and tear is their concern, they need to look at the fact that commercial trucking is causing all the wear, not consumer vehicles. However, as consumers, we are the cause of these vehicles being on the road in the first place. Seems to me approaching this with a sales tax would be far more logical. Furthermore, their are still too many loopholes people use to dodge sales tax in the first place.

By Tacoloft on 7/2/2009 12:48:05 PM , Rating: 1
If you only voters realized that "Hope and Change" was really oly intended for the Federal Government. Taxing at will on every little issue that they can dream up. Socialism using earth religion is on the rise. I am not a believer.

By FITCamaro on 7/2/2009 1:03:27 PM , Rating: 1
Sad part is neither are most Americans. They just bought into the hype thanks to our completely biased media. Even Fox News goes to the left at times. Like their story on the Honduran situation. They called it a military coup like everyone else did when in reality it was not a coup. It was the legally elected senate banishing a president that went beyond his constitutional authority in an attempt to try and become an effective dictator like Hugo Chavez has.

By callmeroy on 7/2/2009 2:26:08 PM , Rating: 2
Is my logic flawed here or wouldn't this tax-per-mileage thing be a contradiction to the current "fad" of going green and alternative fuel, higher fuel efficiency, etc. What I mean is -- isn't the primary reason the majority of us would like more fuel efficiency in our vehicles is to save us money? If you tax per the mile, while more fuel efficiency will always save you more money since you burn less fuel per mile, you would save more money WITHOUT a tax-per-mile system based on current gas taxes.

The other issue I have is how would per-mileage-tax be paid --- I'm assuming one lump sum per year right? I hate lump sum payments if there are alternatives to them...I rather pay $150 a year in gas taxes paid out over the course of each time I'm at the pump (like now) than have to pay $120 all at once.

As much as I hate spending money, like most folks do, I am for fairness when it comes to driving however - so I'm a fan of tolls on state roads because hate tolls as much as you want that's truly fair --- if you use the road you pay for it, if you don't use the road you don't pay for it.

That said no one will drive a road if the tolls are insanely expensive. So if tolls would start popping up all over the place first make a unified easy pass system that works on any toll in the country so there's no stopping or milling for your wallet/purse each time you pull up to a toll and second have frequent useage programs where if you use a toll plaza more than x times in a given time period the next x times through are free, and then that resets every month or whatever. This way if some guy who is forced to take a heavily tolled route to work every day and is shelling out $5-10 a day to do so he's not paying hundreds of dollars a month just to get to work.

I'm not buying the logic here
By 91TTZ on 7/2/2009 3:34:35 PM , Rating: 2
However, consumers tend to travel further in fuel efficient cars than they do in less efficient models. This means that the roads experience more wear and tear.

I'm not convinced that consumers travel further in hybrids than they do in their previous vehicles. I think their travel is more a function of where they work, where their friends and family lives, where they normally go, etc.

One solution is to raise the gas taxes -- but this is something consumers don't like, and many argue it is unfair to certain vehicle classes like heavy trucks.

Wait a second, just a moment ago the issue was about road wear, but now you're saying that we shouldn't tax heavy trucks more, even though they wear the road a disproportionately high amount?

An alternative that is becoming increasingly popular is the idea of a per-mile road tax. Such a scenario would see the government monitor drivers' every movement via GPS to check how many miles they were driving and tax them appropriately.

No thanks. I don't want the government installing a GPS unit in my vehicles so they can track my every movement. Citizens do have a right to privacy, even if that pesky little civil right does interfere with their ability to control and tax you.

Of course, if they do install GPS units in our cars the next logical progression is to fine you every time you exceed the speed limit. This will obviously be marketed as a "safety" issue. Of course they wouldn't install governors on cars based on the local speed limits since that would prevent you from speeding. While that would seem to be the next progression in safety, it would dry up a huge revenue source, and let's be realistic here, this isn't really about safety, it's about taxation.

Oh heck no
By Jeffk464 on 7/2/2009 7:54:15 PM , Rating: 2
This is the worst idea ever. Isn't the government trying to encourage people to drive fuel efficient vehicles? Add to that the invasion of privacy of having the government track our cars through GPS. We all need to start writing our representatives on this one.

Simple Explanation
By diggernash on 7/2/2009 8:41:38 PM , Rating: 2
Prime Directive: Maintain or increase total taxation of individual citizens.

Applied to this situation:
Increased fuel mileage standards will lead to a decrease in "per user" gasoline tax revenues. Thus the need to tax by mile driven.

Bail out money?
By ayat101 on 7/3/2009 12:10:39 AM , Rating: 2
Guys where do you think all this economic bail-out money is going to come from?! Now you know one source :)

Ok. The other option is to introduce additional taxes on electric power in place or in addition to per mile taxes.

as everyone has said
By alpensiedler on 7/3/2009 11:07:48 AM , Rating: 2
it would be impossible for the govt to track us using gps. there would be lots of ways to hack it so that it doesn't work. we can just remove the gps device. if that stops the car from starting, then we can build a faraday cage around it so it just doesn't get a signal. There is no way for them to implement this, other than looking at the milage you report on your inspection or to your car insurance company.

I just don't get governments...
By Helbore on 7/3/2009 2:26:45 PM , Rating: 2
They spend all that money subsidising and pushing cleaner and more efficient cars. They set guidelines forcing manufacturers to increase fuel-efficiency or else. They enoucrage the public to buy such cars.

Then they decide to stick a triple-cost tax-by-the-mile cost on these vehicles before they've even gained momentum in the marketplace. Because that's not going to hamper peoples' interest in buying such cars.

It's time the government introduced their left arm to their right arm. Things might run better if they knew what each other were doing.

hells no
By Randomblame on 7/3/2009 5:58:57 PM , Rating: 2
I pay taxes on my car when I buy it, I pay taxes on my fuel, I buy liscense plates which I doubt really cost 65 dollars to make, I register the car, I buy tabs for the car, I am NOT paying an additional road tax. I am NOT going to have a gps unit in my car for big brother to tax me. Isn't it the state governments responsibility to tax for roads? The federal government wouldn't be so go'ramed broke if obama would put that check book away and just go chill in the whitehouse sauna...

Another truly dumb idea....
By kilkennycat on 7/4/2009 12:15:01 AM , Rating: 2
Oregon has already been field testing such a road tax since 2007.

Yes, we have this kook governor grasping for a legacy as the "great social innovator" with huge tax credits for biodiesel, windmills and hybrid/electric vehicles AND the tax per mile nonsense. Btw, the current Oregon State budget-balancing session has severly trimmed his sails in terms of the tax credits......

The European countries have NO compunction about manipulating gas taxes higher in hard economic times like the present. Their high gas taxes have had the beneficial effect of the mass development and usage of gas-economic vehicles ( diesel or normal-gasoline ) for many, many years. The rabid worshipping of hybrids and electric vehicles is far less evident in the European countries --- plus electric rates in Europe are generally much higher than in the US anyway. The all-electric car is a likely dead-duck in Europe, except in its current form as a tiny easy-to-park commuter vehicle. Forget the Chevy Volt over there... especially at its ridiculous propsed price...

The obvious advantage of taxing per gallon as opposed to taxing per mile is that it puts the pain EXACTLY where IT SHOULD APPROPRIATELY HURT, especially in the US where the fuel taxation receipts are typically devoted exclusively to highway maintenance and improvement and not as in Europe where like most other taxes they normally go into the general funds pool. Gas (or diesel) guzzling vehicles -- trucks, SUVs etc are heavier, and this will still be true even after their hybrid conversions. These will still guzzle more gas than their car-hybrid brothers. And the heavier the vehicle, the more wear there is on the roads.. Four wheel drive vehicles wear the road more than 2-wheel drive wehicles of the same weight --- and get poorer miles per gallon. So, as long as the preponderance of motor vehicles use either gasoline or diesel as their primary energy source, taxation of fuel per gallon consumed is still the ONLY **logically fair** way to finance road repairs and improvements in the US. Taxing per mile throws a major wrench (er, spanner) in the US efforts to promote the sale and use of fuel-economic vehicles. It is a truly, truly, nutty, intrusive (and horrendously expensive-to-implement) idea, unfortunately still supported by the new US Transportation Secretary Ray the Hood and our way-out legacy-hunting Oregon governor.

Tax stupidity
By ICE1966 on 7/5/2009 11:44:03 PM , Rating: 2
its nothing more than taxation without representation. this what all of you Obama supporters get for putting him in office and now its going to affect everyone who drives a car. What we should do is vote people into office that truly represent america and its citzens. All I can say is that you folks who voted this joke into office, not me. I hope your happy because America as we once knew it is gone. For those of you who did vote for Obama, you are now part of the distinguished list of people who can kiss me ass.

proposed 2020 mileage tax
By Donzo on 7/8/2009 1:17:23 PM , Rating: 2
I would propose the "best step forward" would be reduce government size, spending, and influence over our daily lives.

Same Song and Dance
By FUpoliticalAMERICA on 7/6/2009 11:56:55 AM , Rating: 1
With the beginig Electric and Hybrid cars felt like the average consumer who can afford such a vehicle was one step closer to ending an era. Oil has done just as much good as bad, this ONCE GREAT COUNTRY is the leader in oil consumption.
The Politicians have shown they will do whatever is necessary to protect there Money Tree even at the extent of it's own Citizens. Forcing wars and agreements with not so nice Countrys. Instead of reassuring its future with cleaner alternate energy, creating jobs to help a faltering economy, and now the Lower and Middle Classes are feeling it's wrath.
When your CEO's and other higher ups take too much leaving peanuts for the worker bee while not developing new technologies, but refreshing the exsisting ones hit the wall. Blame the banks or the ending of a ripple effect..
Uncle Sam always looks out for # 1 and I say fuck Uncle Sam they take to much and do to little..Bad Schools, Bad roads and Bridges a worthless stockmarket, shitty intrest rates and 9.2 MILLION LAID OFF over 300 million people in the US lets say 15 million have tax paying jobs multiply that by a hundred for taxes out of your pay each WEEK Multiply by 48 weeks in a year with no paid Vacation and whatever... = 72 BILLION Dollars WTF..
The Goverment tracks people on foot by Cell Phone..NOW in the Vehicle too and will get taxed for our travels which already contributing to the economy as a whole. Fuck that Fuck the Law Makers Home of the (free) or TAXES that soon Citizens will be taxed for taking a shit.
Citizens are not free but controlled bye Taxes, Debt and, Technology. While the Rich get Wealthy and the poor stay poor. Where is the opportunity to better your Person, Surroundings, Cities , Country...I am a US Citizen who doesn't see equal opportunity in this Country, but GREED and Disception. This Country was founded on new ideas as a Citizen I say Political America gets a falling grade as far as taking care of its own. Citizens of U.S.A Deserve a new path more equal for all in it's Nation

The best soluiton is...
By Beenthere on 7/2/09, Rating: -1
By To much Common Sense on 7/2/2009 4:57:13 PM , Rating: 1
Do you think its possible to get them to pass a law that would make it legal to run them (politicians - I call them LCB's "Lying-Cheating-Bastards)down in your car if they step into the street.

"I mean, if you wanna break down someone's door, why don't you start with AT&T, for God sakes? They make your amazing phone unusable as a phone!" -- Jon Stewart on Apple and the iPhone

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