GUEST COLUMN:
PPACG seen as ‘useless’
By Brad Collins

       The guest column supporting the long-range transportation plan of the Pikes Peak Area Council of Gov-ernments (PPACG) is void of reality, full of platitudes and does not deal with the realities of the issues at hand. [Westside Pioneer, Feb. 17].
       Let's start with urban infill (developing empty or blighted lots). The writer's arguments for using existing infrastructure have merit, but there is more to the story than that. You have to ask why these properties become abandoned in the first place. Higher taxes, crime, increased regulations and profitability issues are just a few reasons for abandonment. Just as an observation, it does not seem like the PPACG and its backers are in favor of lower taxes or decreasing regulations; they are promoting the opposite. That philosophy does not encourage redevelopment, so do not expect any.
       Another stated goal of the PPACG, with which the guest writer is enamored, is limiting our use of cars. The guest column attempts to justify this with warm and fuzzy rhetoric, wrapping it in the guise of infrastructure maintenance, reduction of noise and air pollution and even keeping our children from obesity. I will give you a little tip - whenever you have to exploit children in your argument, you have lost the argument.
       Do you think mismanagement and misappropriations of our tax dollars by our elected officials have something to do with our shortfalls? Our writer also does not understand the economics behind transportation. There are so many facets involved in the movement of goods and people that any infringement to it will have a cascading economic effect.
       The writer's argument for weaning us off foreign oil is not valid either; we have plenty of oil here in the United States, but we are not allowed to drill for it. This push to move us into alternative energy is not only suspect but economically unproven.
       What we're seeing is a well-organized lobby trying to use the coercive force of government to line its pockets at the expense of the taxpayers. What a deal - let's claim that something emitted naturally like carbon dioxide (CO2) is a hazard to the environment and get citizens to believe it, then we can implement more controls on them and take their money in the process.
       Did you hear about John Stossel's petition to ban “dihydrogen monoxide”? It sounds hazardous, doesn't it? That's right, people lined up to sign a petition to ban water.
       One of the final points in the guest column is to compliment PPACG's plan to funnel people out of the suburbs and back into the city. I am so glad there is a select class of people that know what is best for all of us and can determine where and how we should live.
       These goals of the PPACG have nothing to do with the betterment of our community; they are about controlling our community. If the PPACG was serious about bringing prosperity to Colorado Springs, it would ask legislators to remove all regulations that prohibit growth and stifle innovation. It would support policies that promote economic freedom and encourage entrepreneurship. Then it would disband its existence. In the meantime, the PPACG is just another useless government organization siphoning money out of the private sector and accomplishing nothing of value.