Seattle’s war on cars is also a war on families
Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan announced a congestion pricing plan that will affect every single person in this region; they now are moving forward with the plan to toll all of Seattle’s roads. Every inch of Seattle.
Today is my ultimate vindication of what I’ve been telling you for years. Eighteen years ago, I told my listeners I had a source who told me about the 20-year plan to toll every road in the region. They’re a tiny bit behind schedule, but with Durkan’s announcement Wednesday, we now have proof of their intent to implement that plan soon.
Durkan and other Seattle officials say they want to toll the downtown core with congestion pricing. That’s hardly the real plan, however. This is the real plan and it’s coming in the next few years: if you drive into Seattle — forget about parking — just to drive into the city, it would cost you somewhere between $15-20. That’s the number I’ve heard talked about.
What will this do to the city’s carpenters? Or the plumbers who have to drive their vehicles around Seattle? What about the low-income cleaning service people who clean offices. They’re independent contractors. They don’t have the option of mass transit.
What about the person who drives in from the suburbs and can’t take a maze of rail and buses and streetcars and whatever other nonsense they’ve been trying to shove down our throats. That person has to get to a basketball practice for their kid, or they’ve got to get to music lessons. What about those people? Screw them. The City of Seattle wants money. And they want lots of it.
New York City has been looking at congestion pricing for Midtown Manhattan for a decade now. But they decided — despite how wild-eyed liberal New York City politics is — it’s too radical for even New York City. No city in the country does it.
London does it, and it costs more than $20 to drive into that city. And so Seattle wants to be the first in the country to charge you to drive around the city.
I come into the city every single day from the suburbs. My schedule has been routine for most of the last 10 years. I just retired from coaching high school basketball. My girls got the gym at 3:15 p.m. So I do my show, then I bust out of here. I would go sprinting to my car; go as quickly as I could. That was my reality because I wanted to be part of these kids’ lives. I wanted to give back.
And that’s the reality for so many of the region’s residents. You live in the suburbs, and you work in the city. You want to see your kids’ tennis matches, so you get out of the office a little bit early. Think you’re gonna make that match if you’ve got to take a bike or a train or light rail? If your kid plays C Team basketball or JV basketball that starts earlier in the afternoon, can you do that via mass transit? Of course not.
Taxation without representation
But what we have are a bunch of childless urbanists running the City of Seattle. And what you and I are looking at, if you’re a suburbanite like me, is taxation without representation. We have to get into the city and we want to be part of our community, and be there for our kids, and be active in our family events.
We don’t have any say in the absolute extremist socialist wack-jobs that have taken over the City of Seattle government. How about the people who live out in Snohomish, down in Pierce County, and have to drive to or through the city? Same thing for you — you are going to be deeply affected by this. They want you out of your car.
We’re talking about a bunch of politicians, many of whom are childless. If your lifestyle is about family, then you know this doesn’t work for you.
I’ve told you about this plan over the last 18 years. I have been 100 percent accurate. They want to get it started in downtown Seattle, expand it city-wide, and then expand it region-wide throughout the Puget Sound area. That is the ultimate plan. I am vindicated — everything I’ve told you has been exactly accurate.