Per-mile road tax
Re “California looks at dumping gas tax for per-mile fee as cars use less fuel” (sacbee.com, Dec. 8): Well, here comes the Legislature with another lame idea. Now all those people who purchased hybrid or electric cars will get punished along with the rest of us. It won’t matter whether you get 5 miles to the gallon or 50 miles to the gallon, you’ll pay the same tax. Right now, if you drive more miles, you buy more gas and pay more tax.
Maybe they should drop the subsidies on hybrids and electrics, and then they would have more money left to spend on roads. Also, if they eliminated commuter lanes, the other lanes wouldn’t get beat up so fast. If they had spent the money raised on gas taxes over the years toward keeping the roads repaired rather than on some other pet project, maybe we wouldn’t have this problem of roads in such disrepair.
Re “Why young people hate capitalism“ (sacbee.com, Dec. 5): Perhaps so many young people hate capitalism because the older generation of teachers and journalists who should have taught it to them do not themselves know what it is. Michelle Goldberg is a case in point. Her calling our current economic system “capitalism” is farcical. We live under a sprawling regulatory state where vast sectors, such as health care and finance, are heavily controlled by government. Goldberg should also know that our enormous, byzantine tax code is not a feature of a capitalistic economy but of a mixed economy.
But she has a point: Congress is making much ado tinkering with the tax code when the real problems hampering our economy, particularly for young people, stem from an out-of-control regulatory state that Congress legislated into being. If Congress actually attempted to release the shackles on our economy and allowed capitalism to exist, many people – young and old – might come to know it for the very first time. For now, their hatred is born of ignorance.