About “The Roads” . . .

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There is a problem with the roads – and it isn’t just the potholes. 

The fundamental problem is government.

Government roads are – like government schools – owned by the government, though both are financed by you and I, whether we like it or not. Even if we don’t use them, we are taxed to pay for them. But we enjoy no meaningful control over what we’re forced to finance.

Land is expropriated to accommodate the government’s schools and roads; the former owner “compensated” to whatever extent the government considers to be “fair” – irrespective of the cost to the former owner. The public is then permitted conditional use of the government’s property, which is very cleverly styled “public,” implying they are “owned” by everyone. Yet no one – except government – has any meaningful ownership claim over that which the government controls.  

In this way, the people are fooled into believing they have gained something at no cost as opposed to paying a very heavy price for it. Former rights – including to travel, freely – turned into conditional privileges given (and withheld) at the pleasure of government.

But without government, some cry, there would be no roads!

This is like saying that without government, we’d have no food.

Interestingly, there were roads – and food – long before government began asserting control over them.

Needful things create an incentive to provide them, which some people do and which other people are happy to pay them for.

The difference being – when they are provided by people without the force of government involved – that no one is forced to pay for them and when someone chooses to pay for them, they enjoy the right to use them. Just the same as you have the right to eat the food you just paid for. No one would insist you must have a license to buy food and that you may only buy certain foods and then eat them in the prescribed manner (and quantity).

Well, actually, some (naturally, in government) are beginning to insist upon some of those things and the “public” begins to accept the impositions,  having been habituated to the idea that “public” (i.e., government) is preferable to private – and that the “public” has an “interest” in laying down the various terms and conditions. The “public” being those in government who tell the “public” – that’s everyone else – what they’ll be allowed to do and punished for if they don’t do it.

Some say that if government didn’t own the roads there would be abusive roads controlled by “greedy” private interests. This is a hilarity on par with The Chimp’s talk the other day, about the ” . . .the decision of one man to launch a wholly unjustified and brutal invasion of Iraq – I mean Ukraine.”

Government roads are tax roads – in serially abusive ways. There are the taxes styled “vehicle registration” and  “licenses” – which one must buy in order to be allotted the conditional privilege to use the roads. Interestingly, the “licenses” are not indices of competence to drive. They are “papers” – the government’s way of ear-tagging everyone who drives, on and off the road. You need a driver’s license to buy alcohol – another conditional privilege – even if you walk to the store. And to be allowed to do myriad other things that used to be rights and which have nothing to do with driving. But government ownership of the roads makes having a “license” to use them a de facto necessity as well as a de jure method of identifying and tracking everyone, on and off the roads.

Without government roads, there wouldn’t be government IDs. Nor “checkpoints” at which you are forced to produce them.

Then there are the other taxes government applies to punish those who use the roads – including what are styled “tickets,” those demand-notes for money, issued at gunpoint (always implicit in these transactions, whether the gun is actually drawn or not) which, if not paid, results in the loss of one’s privilege to use the roads one paid to use. These ticket-taxes are different from whatever fees a privately owned road’s owner might charge in that they are both arbitrary and extortionate. A private road-owner could not get away with arbitrarily applying extortionate fees because people would be free to not use his roads, just as a privately owned restaurant cannot just charge customers whatever it likes, treat them abusively and then pad the check with various add-ons – because the restaurant’s owner cannot force customers to eat at his restaurant.

Nor can he seize anyone’s land, raze their home and build his restaurant upon it.

This is something only government can do. Or rather, do legally. When it is done privately, it is called theft. It is no different when government does the same. It is merely given a different name – “eminent domain” – and anointed with legality.

Privately owned roads would have to be built on land acquired by paying for it – from people willing to sell it. Is this such a terrible idea?

It’s true it might be harder to build – as James Brown put it – super highways, coast to coast – for the same reason it is harder for one man or a few men to kill millions of men. Government is very good at doing that, which it can do easily because it has a near-limitless supply of men it can use to do the killing. And make them pay for it, too. There is never a shortage of guns and uniforms – and prisons and even ditches, filled to overflowing with corpses – when government is involved in such things.

So, yes, there might not be superhighways, coast to coast. It might not be as easy to get anywhere. But it’d be freer to get everywhere, because you wouldn’t be forced to pay for it – and you wouldn’t require anyone’s permission to do it, either.    

. . .

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52 COMMENTS

  1. Not or less government controlled Bitcoin up 24% from it’s May low

    Fully government controlled/managed S&P 500 up 9% from it’s May low

  2. The evil railroaders just kept moving more rail everywhere. The Coolies built the railroads moving east to the Promontory Point, you gotta meet somewhere in the great wide open.

    Those trains had passenger cars filled with buffalo hunters using Sharps .50 caliber bullets. Buffalo bones were piled 30 feet high to grind into fertilizer for Iowa farmers to plant more corn to feed hogs. It was a commercial enterprise and an extirpation of indigenous peoples.

    There are photos of wagons filled with buffalo bones on the main street of my home town. Until the buffalo were gone, that is.

    June 25-26, 1876, Custer fought a losing battle at Little Big Horn. July 4th, 1876 was not all that much fun on America’s Centennial celebration. Crazy Horse made sure Custer was turned into a pin cushion. Arrows work wonders too, bullets begin with a B.

    It was a turkey shoot, kill all of the buffalo, the Native Americans will shuffle along to more happy hunting grounds and drive buffalo by the hundreds over cliffs out in Montana.

    Jim Hill is rolling in his grave with Burlington in the name of the old GNRR. It is an outrage, GN employees were not happy. The Q was not accepted by Great Northern dedicated employees.

    The Milwaukee Road had the coolest coaches.

    The distance between rails is the same as chariot wheels. The foreman has the rail gauge.

    The carrying capacity of the Great Plains is far greater than the non-farmed lands before settlers got there. Iowa was open prairie before farmers plowed furrows, buffalo and native flora flourished. Native Americans still used fire to manage grazing lands. New green growth would attract buffalo, another happy hunting ground.

    Mark Twain described the settling of the West as ‘intelligent barbarism.’

    • The Milwaukee Road still holds the record for sustained speed that is twice what Amtrak can manage on the same route. They got to over 120 mph with steam, and routinely did 100.

  3. #3 Good condition
    $132,000 ’74 Ducati SS They were 3600 ask at the dealer. and 2200 on the few used sellers. There has never been a better bike.

  4. Now this is priceless. You’re suggesting that a bunch of “anarchists” join together to finance and build “private roads??” I haven’t laughed this hard since 2019.

    (Or maybe Musk will do it. Why don’t you drop him a line, and see what he says?) 😉

  5. Another aspect of government roads that few realize is the HUGE subsidy the trucking industry gets at the expense of auto drivers. A fully loaded 18-wheeler does 10,000 times the damage to the roadways as does a passenger car, yet they do not pay 10,000 time the taxes, for if they did, they would be paying 10,000 x $0.678 (combined state and federal gasoline tax in Washington State, where I live) or $678/gallon gas tax or 10,000 x $0.738 = $738/gallon diesel fuel tax.
    If gov.org stopped subsidizing trucks at the expense of cars, then the freight companies could shift to rail which is about four times more fuel efficient than 18-wheelers. That means that if that subsidy vanished, carbon emissions due to freight, would diminish by about 75%. With the increase in business, the rail companies could invest in better and faster rail lines. Freight business was always the meat and potatoes of the rail business and for publicity etc., passenger business was a loss-leader. Perhaps once again the US rail system could compete on a level playing field and reduce car-truck fatalities on the freeways, decrease fuel consumption, reduce air pollution and also restore efficient passenger rail service in the USA. I do realize that 150 years ago some of the rail companies received huge subsidies from Uncle Sam in the form of receiving every other section of land across the country, however some rail lines, like the Great Northern bought the land.

    Thanks again for the wonderful essay. I enjoy your work.

    • Rail is just fine. In my sector we have coal fired electricity. They actually burn quite cleanly. Maybe the trains could be coal powered that bring the evil rocks from Wyoming. Before the ban on bituminous coal from southern Illinois there was a company that showed the advantage of steam powered traction. That coal isn’t so bad when scrubbed. Hey, it even might power your Tesla.

      • There is a modern steam engine to power vehicles that can burn various fuels, it is up to 60% efficient, that is better then any ice or EV vehicle, we have gone backwards from the old days with steam powered vehicles. See: Cyclonepower……

        An EV is steam powered (your tesla is steam powered), just in a far more complicated and centralized system where you have no control, that is ten times as expensive. This system is so complex and big it is fragile, subject to disruption and breakdown. It is easier to control you, they turn off your tesla or your electricity and you are screwed.

        How did they ever convince people to buy EV’s? Maybe billions of dollars spent on marketing and government (taxpayer) funded programs to pay for the EV’s, tax credits, EV manufacturers selling EV’s at a loss but making money selling carbon credits, ice car owner paid for roads, etc., taxpayer subsidized electricity at the power plant.

        They are centralizing all power sources (electricity) so they have control of people moving around, they say it is for zero emission, that is a lie, most electricity production is very dirty and wasteful, 33% efficiency, it is for complete control, centralize everything, If they don’t like you they turn off your electricity, you are immobilized and freeze in the winter.

        Power plants – coal, natural gas, petroleum or nuclear – work on the same general principle. Energy-dense stuff is burned to release heat, which boils water into steam, which spins a turbine, which generates electricity. The thermodynamic limits of this process (“Damn that rising entropy!”) mean only part of the energy in the raw materials actually make it onto the grid in the form of electricity.

        Generating electricity, we lost 22 quadrillion Btu from converting coal, natural gas, nuclear and petroleum into electricity in power plants in 2013 in the U.S. – that’s more than the energy in all the gasoline we use in a given year.

        Thermal efficiency of power plants using coal, petroleum, natural gas or nuclear fuel and converting it to electricity are around 33% efficiency, natural gas is around 40%.

        Gas engine are 35% efficient (an F1 Mercedes ice gas engine is 50% efficient), a diesel engine is 50% efficient, a new steam engine is up to 60% efficient, and these engines pollute far less then the power plant.

        Just convert the fuel to energy in your steam powered vehicle and get up to 60% efficiency and eliminate the cost of power plants (which costs billions of dollars) converting petroleum to electricity (creating pollution) , transmitting it over millions of miles of transmission and distribution lines (which costs billions of dollars), then spending many hours storing the electricity in your very expensive EV’s fire bomb lithium batteries and ending up with a net efficiency of 25% (12% if it is very cold). Or use a diesel engine that is 50% efficient.

        Thermal efficiency of power plants using coal, petroleum, natural gas or nuclear fuel and converting it to electricity are around 33% efficiency, (67% of the energy released is lost as heat), natural gas is around 40%. Then there is average 6% loss in transmission, then there is a 5% loss in the charger, another 5% loss in the inverter, the electric motor is 90% efficient so another 10% loss before turning the electricity into mechanical power at the wheels.

        33% – 6% – 5% – 5% – 10% = 25% efficiency for EV’s.
        NOTE: (under not ideal conditions, like when it is very cold out, it might be 12% efficient).

        Re: power plants: all they are doing is boiling water to make energy, you might as well just get a steam powered car, cut your own wood or use other fuels, to boil water, make your own energy in your steam powered car, you control the power source, steam power was best and we just went backwards since then.

        https://cyclonepower.com/#

    • The pipelines were shut down/not built to benefit Buffet’s railroads, moving crude oil, pipelines are safer, more efficient…..

  6. Ok Eric, but do we ACTUALLY want superhighways? Highways are curvy and meandering because they grew organically over time to meet the needs of the people. Superhighways are a top-down effort by centralized government that suddenly appear and cut through the land. Sure, they’re efficient, but small towns were decimated by bypasses (everyone go live in cities), and the feds now use maintenance money as an extortion measure to the states.

    I find it amazing, centralized government breeds centralization everywhere. I doubt the whole “move everyone into cities with EVs and public transportation” thing is even an organized plan. It’s probably just a natural side effect of big government that no one in particular holds the keys to.

  7. government/taxes/the fed/recession

    this is an excellent video, lots of interesting info……

    Here are just some of topics discussed.

    Possible end of the 40-year bull in debt, if so a “global depression” threat

    Emerging Market Blowups

    The Yen

    Equity Markey Complacence – Bond Market Reacting to Reality of Higher Interest Rates, Equity Markets Say Prove Hikes Are Coming

    Game of Chicken

    Average age of Senators – No one will stand up to the Fed except Pat Toomey

    Jay Powell knows the damage he did by saving BBB-rated bonds

    Yield Curve Inversions – How Much Time Is There?

    Watch currencies especially in countries importing energy

    Inventories

    De-globalization

    Not going to get fiscal stimulus in this mid-term election year.

    Housing wealth effect in reverse

    Violent unwind of the carry trade (Yen and Euro)

    Pension Plan Irony, Pension Plan Risk, Pension Plan Ponzi Schemes

    Fed Pushes Legal Limits

    Monetary policy favors the 1%

    Extends and Pretend on Commercial Real Estate Loans, Midsize Banks Hold this Debt

    Investment ideas: Look for Safe Municipals (not Illinois), Gold, Cash

    Avoid value traps like discretionary spending and healthcare, wary of energy because of huge valuation runups

    https://www.zerohedge.com/markets/end-40-year-bull-debt-global-depression-threat

  8. Great point! (and initially “licenses” were (or maybe still are in actuality) for COMMERCIAL vehicles anyway.

  9. I believe living without a government commanding your every breath and step is termed as living in an anarchy. I am finding this more attractive every day. Government, by its very nature, is prone to failure in most instances. It is mostly comprised of arrogant, power hungry miscreants and control freaks who pretend to serve the people. As we are witnessing now, this idea of building a harmonious world has gone completely off the rails.

    • Hi Tom,

      I feel – I think – the same way. And so do most of us – though very few think about it, much. What I mean is that in our own circles, among our friends and family, we practice anarchy. That is to say, no government. We abide by rules, enforced by the freedom to not associate. If a friend or family member comes to my home, they do so understanding it is my home – and abide by house rules. For example, no smoking. Or please take your shoes off. Etc. If these rules are insufferable, no one is obliged to abide by them. They are free to leave – or not come, in the first place. And just the same when I go to their homes. This is civil – the antecedent of civilization. Government is the antithesis of both.

      • Right you are eric. I don’t know who makes all that govt. money building roads but it’s certainly decreased when you do a job that’s tough and has to be done correctly.

        When I got out of school there was a new road being built between my hometown and I-20. I got a job instantly. They took one look and saw I had the muscle and didn’t care if I had a mind. I got my first paycheck and one day at supper my father asked me what I was making. He’d slaved away working up to the second high spot in his company and when I handed him my check I thought he’d pass out.

        I asked him what he made(enough to keep the family well-fed and living in a new home). He simply didn’t reply. He knew why I didn’t want to go to college and knew exactly why I would, college deferment. I hated college, mainly because most of my “teachers” couldn’t speak English well enough for me to understand. I didn’t finish because right about the time I was getting into the interesting stuff, they started sending the people back from Vietnam, warm bodies for the most part. That left me with only finding $.75/hr jobs and that’s no way to live in 1970. I moved with my girlfriend soon to be my wife to the high plains and ran a feedlot and did everything it takes to raise the feed and all the other things. Once I found out they were going to bust me for selling drugs even though I had almost none and knew no one to sell them too, I knew it was time ti leave that shithole. I drove home and stayed with my parents for a few days, then took my uncle’s new truck and put sideboards on the front half of a flatbed trailer. We went up late one night and started loading what few possessions we had, went to the RR yard and put our pickup on the back. I drove about 80 all the way back and went to work for my uncle driving his old truck that broke down soon enough, Around my 23rd birthday I bought my own truck and never looked back till they pulled the doubling the price of fuel on me. 75% of independent truckers went broke and out of bidness in 1975 and 75% of the ones left went broke in 76.

        Some friends from the hill country came and rescued us. I left all my trucking stuff with my uncle and sold my truck to a friend working a scrap yard. Living there was a wild ride and I was declared company mechanic. Once my back was bad enough I couldn’t do anything, I had surgery courtesy of the state of Texas and moved back close to where I’d left and got “A trucking Job”. And so it went and went and then the larger companies began to fail.

        My entire life had been controlled by govt of one sort or the other. It still is but I’m so fucked up I don’t care if I live or die now. Just got another MRI last Thursday. I’ll be surprised to see any good news. peace to evveryone but politicians and bureaucrats.

      • If, on the unlikelihood that I come to your house, I will not take off my shoes. One of your relatives might steal my Wisconsin made shoes. Besides, why would they steal my high top wingtips?
        The prettiest bike ever made:
        1974 marked the first year of mass production of Super Sport. The bike featured 10.5:1 compression ratio, a voluminous 6 gallon gas tank and a claimed weight of 333 lb (151 kg). A mere 401 1974 Super Sports were produced and the bike immediately set new standards for production motorcycles and had unique styling, but for all intents and purposes it was a pure production racer with the minimum of concessions to make it street legal. Unfortunately, the complicated bevel gear-driven camshaft made the bike uneconomical to produce, thus the 1974 model is the only round-case 90-degree v-twin with desmodromic valve gear. However the 1974 model bike is considered to be the most significant production bike in Ducati’s history, mostly because it offered the highest standards of handling and performance available at that time and essentially saved Ducati from extinction.

        • It wasn’t street legal as it shifted on the wrong side, had no turn signals, and the fuel tank was fiberglass. It was too loud for tender ears and a lot more that put it outre. Ducati thumbed their collective nose and got away with it. Bless them.

  10. Soon, to drive down the road you will be forced to buy an EV.

    EV issues….

    At the power plant water is boiled to create steam, this is fed through a steam turbine connected to a generator that generates electricity, that is sent out through transmission lines to distribution lines, which are connected to a charger, the charger is connected to the EV, the electricity goes through an inverter and batteries into an electric motor that pushes the EV down the road. This is a very complicated expensive way to power a car.

    Thermal efficiency of power plants using coal, petroleum, natural gas or nuclear fuel and converting it to electricity are around 33% efficiency, (67% of the energy released is lost as heat), natural gas is around 40%. Then there is average 6% loss in transmission, then there is a 5% loss in the charger, another 5% loss in the inverter, the electric motor is 90% efficient so another 10% loss before turning the electricity into mechanical power at the wheels.

    33% – 6% – 5% – 5% – 10% = 25% efficiency for EV’s.
    NOTE: (under not ideal conditions, like when it is very cold out, it might be 12% efficient).

    travelling 100 miles in an average EV uses 1.03 gallons equivalent of fuel = 34.7 kwh of electricity that is the net amount, but….at the power plant 4 gallons of fuel were burnt to get a net 1 gallon of fuel equivalent 34.7 kwh used by the EV.

    travelling 100 miles in an average EV uses 1.03 gallons equivalent of fuel = 34.7 kwh of electricity @ $0.40 per kwh = $13.88, back at the power plant 4 gallons were burnt to get the net 34.7 kwh of electricity. NOTE: 4 gallons were burnt to go 100 miles.

    EV owner uses 4 gallons to go 100 miles, that is 25 mpg, lots of ice cars get better fuel economy.

    ice gas vehicle economy example that gets far more then 25 mpg……
    Fiat 500 0.9 lt. gas 8V 51 mpg city, 69 mpg highway…
    The Fiat used 1.44 gallons of fuel on the highway to go 100 miles @ $4.00 per gallon = $5.79

    travelling 100 miles in a 50 mpg diesel uses 2 gallons of fuel @ $4.00 per gallon = $8.00 and it has a huge range……

    There is an additional cost for the EV owner: the tesla $22,000 battery is used up, worn out in 100,000 miles. this works out to $22.00 per 100 miles it is costing you for the battery. Total cost: $13.88 plus $22.00 = $35.88

    Each EV will use multiple batteries……

    Remember that to get the same level of longevity that petrol and diesel cars an EV will go through three battery packs which is hell of a large carbon footprint, and very expensive the tesla battery is $22,000, it costs you $22.00 per 100 miles just for the battery.
    3 batteries = $66,000, this makes ice cars look very, very cheap to own/run….haha
    now you know why very few of the taxis are EV’s, charging times, higher fuel costs and very expensive battery replacement, hybrids or diesels are far better.

    NOTE: tesla battery lasts 100,000 miles and costs $22,000 ( someone said there is also a $4500 recycling fee….haha) $4500 recycling fee…lots will probably get thrown in the bush…

    EV vans are worse as they will burn through five or six battery power packs to last as long as the existing ice vans. 5 times $22,000 = $110,000 very very expensive, makes zero sense….lol

    EV’s are a very complicated expensive way to push a car down a road, skip the very big and expensive power plant and power grid, the very heavy, expensive, dangerous lithium fire bomb battery, the charger, converter, electric motor.
    A better idea: just burn fuel in an ice engine inside the car to move the car down the road, a far, far more simple, cheaper, proven and cleaner solution.

    EV’s.are 25% efficient
    NOTE: (under not ideal conditions, like when it is very cold out, it might be 12% efficient).

    Gas engine are 35% efficient (an F1 Mercedes ice engine is 50% efficient), a diesel engine is 50% efficient, a new steam engine is over 50% efficient.

    NOTE: The power plant emits far more pollution then the exhaust on a new ice engine, an EV is not zero emission, that is a lie, it is remote emission, back at the power plant……

    The EV uses twice as much fuel, costs more and pollutes more then the ice engines.

    NOTE: A steam engine burning hydrogen is zero emission, an EV is not zero emission.

    Re: EV semi trucks
    There is zero EV heavy duty semi trucks. Why? ….charging times, these trucks quite often run 24/7, worse fuel economy, with batteries it would drop 50%, very high battery replacement costs, NOTE: these trucks easily go one million miles with ice diesel engines.

    NOTE: EV vans are worse as they will burn through five or six battery power packs to last as long as the existing ice vans.
    So in one million miles the semi truck would need 10 to 20 battery replacements, these trucks weigh 5 times as much as a tesla car much so if the battery cost 5 times as much it would = $110,000 per battery replacement.

    The only thing that works in these big heavy trucks is ice diesel engines, that will not change.

    There is zero EV heavy duty semi trucks, because these buyers aren’t stupid, they can do the math/research, they know about the EV bad fuel economy, very expensive cost to replace batteries, long charging times, fire risks, huge purchase prices, very short lifespan compared to a one million mile diesel…..only the general public is stupid enough to buy an EV.

    • No, but in every state you will have to go to the same DMV and get a state-issued “ID” card to show legal proof of age to buy alcohol or tobacco products. Pay a FEE for this “ID”. Never mind that, like myself, no one who isn’t legally blind could mistake the buyer for a minor.

      • I despise the liquor stores out in the east. They have all that shit that stands between you and the booze and you can’t look at it. In Texas, you just walk in and handle any and everything you want to see. It’s a private operation, no govt. involved for the most part. I felt like I was in WW11 Germany with Nazi’s on the other side of the counter, a counter with a fence between you and it. I was sorta stunned the first time I went in one. I’m thinking “What country is this?” And Texans are really friendly people but the southeasterners certainly aren’t. Eric, you need to come to Texas. It’s so much different from the southeast you wouldn’t believe it. You have whatever you want and don’t get shit from much of anyone unless you cause it. I couldn’t live in Virginia or any of the states east thereof. The first time I took a load to the east coast , it was nothing but dumbasses talking trash about my “fancy” rig. Nothing fancy about it, just met the specs of Texas vehicles and that was it. I did one major thing that was taken as a means of giving you shit, I kept my rig clean and ALL the lights worked. I had a bigass 1,000 watt bi-directional radio. When the shit got too thick I’d just hold the mic for a few minutes and when I let off there would be silence. Then somebody would say “what was that?” I’d wait and slowly some crap would start up again but it was like little kids testing the water before getting their asses whipped. I avoided the east coast as much as I could and that was a great deal. If you don’t have the balls to actually call a guy out for something only you thought was wrong, you could just kiss my ass. I admit, I had west coast mirrors that worked as intended on both sides and all the lights Texas required. I even had both doors on the cab, something you didn’t see much of in the early 70’s. It was like I was an alien pulling into a truck stop. If they’d only seen the big KW’s and Peterbilts my buddies had they would have shit their britches. Come to Texas and bring plenty guns and ammo or just get it all here. This shit between the queers and real men isn’t going to last much longer. If I offended anyone, I didn’t mean to but I’m just telling a historical story as it happened.

      • I have lived in Europe since 1991. Returned one summer, 1995, to a small Missouri town, 2,000 population where I had lived awhile . I was 40 years old, some gray hairs already. Bought a 6 pack of beer and the chick carded me. I laughed like hell. ¨No ID, no beer¨she told me.

        Flew out of Chicago O’hare airport in 2010. Stopped at an in airport bar to buy an overpriced beer. ¨Show me ID¨ the old lady told me. I asked, ¨Are you serious?¨ I had lots of gray hairs by then. ¨No ID, no beer¨she told me.

        Share this article with everyone. https://www.lewrockwell.com/2022/05/no_author/police-state-in-slo-mo/

        usa is a shithole now and gonna get much, MUCH WORSE. piglosi, chumer, fjb and hunter. are HAPPIER day by day.

        spagan ain’t much better.

        Klaws chaub.

        • Amen, Anon-

          I’ve had the same happen to me as well. It’s insufferable. More “it’s the rules” crap; one size fits all, obviating any common sense – such as the fact that no one over 40 can pass for under 18. But even 75 year olds get carded… by teenagers… because it’s the rules.

  11. why are roads always the go to? Like the concept of government was created for the sole purpose of roads

    There is one thing you won’t have without government (or at least very little of) and that is war.

    • I’ll play Devil’s Advocate here Dan, as I know how it would work…but the next question you’d get is ‘what would stop a country from invading if you don’t have a government to protect you?!’

      • If only we could ask Admiral Yamamoto what he meant by “An American, with a RIFLE, behind EVERY BLADE OF GRASS”, when explaining to his jingoistic colleagues in the Imperial Japanese military why an attempt to invade the United States was military folly. He lived for years in the USA, on the staff of the Japanese Naval Attache, and attended Harvard for post-graduate studies.

      • Andrew,
        Some counties don’t have a military. Most don’t have one large enough to do much, yet they aren’t invaded.
        For much of the history of the USA, military was small.

        What countries could even conceivably invade the US? only a handful.
        Would they bother? Probably no.
        Look at the problems we had invading other “lessor” countries.

        The #1 criteria for being invaded is if you have something the USA wants, so I think we’re safe from being invaded.

  12. When nobody is on the road, you own the road. The only bozo out there. lol

    Biden has managed to cut down on traffic that goes more than 25 miles by 50 percent it seems.

    I want the county to provide paved roads right to my concrete driveway in front of my garage. They refuse, I might have to take hostages.

    When the price of crude is above 100 USD, the oil lease royalties buy my gas. When the price of oil is below 50 USD, the oil companies pay for the gas I purchase at the pump.

    The gas is more or less free. I prefer the price of crude at the 44 USD mark set in August of 2004. The oil companies will still make out like bandits. They own private jets is enough proof in the pudding. The BNSF has a private jet. They’re not hurting.

    Everyone benefits at that price. A 55 gallon drum of butanol is 1,067 USD. You’ll make money manufacturing BIC lighters by many times. Refined petroleum products is where the money is. It used to be the money was in the banks, but it’s been gone since the day the music died.

    Premium gas is at 4.79 USD and more here, the price will go higher.

    Time to sell the 40 foot RV with a 150 gallons of tank capacity. 750 USD in the tank is a size-able investment with diesel at 5.00 USD per gallon.

    • Hello, two words for you. Plastic Pyrolisis. Diesel from plastic. You can then refine it into gasoline. The instructions are on youtube.

      • Hi SM777, out of curiosity I watched a couple of those videos. Looks like you invest a lot in equipment, drive around all day collecting scrap plastic, put in a hundred bucks worth of some other fuel, and it gives you a few ounces that you can put in your car. Next stop is your mechanic’s shop to fix the damage done.
        A lot like ethanol and biodiesel. I expect it will be mandated soon.

  13. Y’know, a movie from 1980, “Used Cars”, with Kurt Russel at his slimiest best (and Jack Warden in a dual role), as kitschy and moronic as it was (“$24K for a used Mercedes? Why, that’s just too fookin’ HIGH!” (Kaboom!)), came a good point…the two feuding car dealers, heading by each role that Jack Warden played, will benefit from an off-ramp that will come off the future planned freeway (the Superstition Freeway was under construction in the East Valley through Tempe and Mesa, AZ, when this movie was filmed) and dump customers onto one lot…or the OTHER. Kurt Russel’s slimy salesman is conning his way to raise sufficient seed money to bribe the appropriate party hacks that will, in turn, back his campaign for County Supervisor.

    We give way too much ability for the real-life slimeballs to direct the “pube-lick” roads and highways for THEIR benefit, not OURS. Another thing I notice is, after awhile, the condition of the “public” highways tends to DETERIORATE…so, then the call is to RAISE taxes, either the fuel taxes, or state income tax, or a tax on sunny days, but it’s sold to a gullible “pube-lick” as TEMPORARY…and, I suppose they’re being “Truthful”…in terms of GEOLOGIC or ASTRONOMICAL time. After all, the Earth is supposed to be 4.5 Billion years old, and in about 1 to 2 billion more, the Sun will go into its red giant phase and “swallow up” Mercury, Venus, and “da Oith” (and maybe Mars, too), so is our very planet not also “temporary”? Probably more so than taxes!

  14. Roads and other infrastructure also become political carrots for incumbent politicians and in-power political parties. If “your” representative is on the transporation committee you get nice roads. If not, you don’t. A great example of this is the old Pennsylvania congressional district 12 and district 9 (now 13/15). District 12 was represented by John P “Jack” Murtha, and district 9’s representative was Elmer Greinert “Bud” Shuster. Jack was on the defense approprations committee (and later became the chair). Bud was on the transporation committee. There was an obvious line in the roads where one district ended and the other began. Getting around Cambria County was all two lane twisty roads. The four lane roads that did exist were stubs, and in the case of rt 219, just ended with a construction barrier on each end. Blair and Bedford counties were all 4 lane highways, smooth and in great condition. When the money ran out for national routes, Bud pushed through the I99 project, which might have made sense for the growth in State College, but ended up being much more expensive due to intense public complaints about the route. Not to mention that I99 doesn’t follow the proper Interstate naming format, since the interstates were designed as a whole.

    Ol’ Bud wasn’t all that bad, as politicians go. He opposed mandates for airbags, and fought to keep fuel taxes going to road maintenance instead of “other.”
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bud_Shuster#Congressional_service

  15. It’s a simple task. Build roads, maintain them, resurface as required. The government is apparently incapable. At some soon to arrive point, one might have to have a 4WD truck to navigate them.
    Several years ago, the neighboring county was proposing to rebuild a bridge on a county road. i drove over to the sight in my 4WD truck, and a good thing I did. Otherwise the road was impassable. What the county was trying to do was rebuild a bridge on what was essentially private property. i took a look at the plat map, and discovered a number of corporate land holdings that would have been quite well served by the rebuilding of said bridge. Wrote a letter to the editor, and no such rebuilding occurred.

  16. The express lanes on 395, 495, and, coming soon, the “FredEx” on 95 down to Fredericksburg are privately owned, the land leased from the State of Virginia for a century by the Coonman and his predecessor in return for the state receiving “A Piece of the Action”.

    (Life imitates yet another “Star Trek” episode art)

    Australian and Canadian pensioners are the primary beneficiaries.

  17. Every single thing the government does is colored by the fact that it has assumed the authority to kill you if you don’t obey. Restraining itself only enough to avoid massive insurrection. Often approaching the edge. It is definitely walking the edge now. The question is, are there enough of us capable of critical thought to push it back? We shall see.

  18. If there is a need, the free market will fulfill it. I forget the name of it, but while the Union Pacific transcontinental railroad crossed the central US, killing any Indians that objected to having their land stolen, there was another transcontinental railroad crossing in the North which was negotiating with, and paying Indians for passage. Which failed to materialize because the FedGov wasn’t killing people that got in its way, as they did for Union Pacific. Speaking of which, the advent of FedGov “super highways” destroyed a thriving rail industry, that was far less energy consuming, and cheaper than tractor trailers on those “super highways”. Just slower. Of course we as a people are addicted to immediate gratification, and want our stuff NOW.
    There is nothing government forces us to pay for that the free market could not provide, better and cheaper. Without guns pointed at our heads.

    • Hello John,

      It was James J. Hill’s Great Northern Railroad. He paid, traded, and/or negotiated for property or easements for his rail to cross the country.

      Imagine that. He found a way to do something monumental without mass murder and threat of violence.

    • The Great Northern Railway. James Hill wasn’t really a libertarian though, he didn’t like the land grant deals offered and so had to aquire the land honestly. But it does show that private roads are not only possible, they were the default until the CA gold rush and Civil War. I think the real reason why the feds subsidized the transcontinental routes was for expediency in getting the gold back east to the treasury. There wasn’t any gold in the PNW, only raw materials, so Hill was the only one interested in the route. And thanks to lobbying efforts by Lincoln -who later called in all those favors to get the railroads quasi-nationalized to supply the Union Army, the frivoulous need became the most important.

      Which raises another idea. Transporation networks are public because they are necessary to transport war matériel. We all know that the Interstate Highway Act was part of the defense budget. But how many GA airfields get built (or stay in operation) because there’s an Air National Guard base attached? What about sleepy, backwater train depots that don’t have any activity other than a few times a year? I imagine a lot of the transportation infrastructure is there just in case the military desired it.

      The Roman road network was designed for chariots, not wagons.

      • And who do you suppose that military being transported will be attacking, Ready? Russians? Chinese? Americans? A lesson learned from the War of Northern Aggression? Where Northern state funded railroads were a critical factor?

        • Hey John. Armies fight ground wars. They strategize on the idea of a boots-on-the-ground war with an invading army. I guess that would be the Mexicans or Canadians, or maybe dropped in from low Earth orbit, because anyone crossing the oceans in troop transports would be spotted and eliminated almost immediately.

          You and I think logically, that no invading force would go anywhere near the North American continent until the major cities and infrastructure was destroyed by nuclear-tipped ICBMs. But the West Point grads who study such things are looking at the last big wars, not the next one. Unfortunately their planning leads to speculation that the army is an occupying force on American soil. That might be a possibility, but to me it’s a jobs program more than an effective deterrent.

          As for the railroads being a factor in the war’s outcome? Absolutely! Being able to shuttle supplies and men around quickly was key to winning the war. Most of the battles were fought inland, not on the coast, so supply ships weren’t a factor without the rail network for distribution.

          http://www.civilwar.com/history/weapons-44543/railroads-79476.html

    • the hell with the buffalo humping drunken indians. all land is gotten thru conquest. they took it from other tribes. US took it from them

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