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(Providence Journal)   Tea Party Patriots come out in force after one of their members attempts to burn down a bridge to protest a 10-cent toll. Sign goodness: "No tolls for trolls", "Obama lied, freedom died", "Hooked on phonics didn't work for me"   (providencejournal.com ) divider line
    More: Dumbass, Hooked on Phonics, Tea Party Patriots, Obama, Sakonnet, Obama lied  
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3370 clicks; posted to Politics » on 19 Aug 2013 at 7:04 AM (3 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



Voting Results (Smartest)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

2013-08-19 07:28:37 AM  
7 votes:
The Tea Party ideology boiled down:  "We don't want to pay for things!"
2013-08-19 07:35:44 AM  
5 votes:
A 10c toll?  That's what they are upset about?  It costs me about $75 round-trip in tolls to go to the Outer Banks from NYC.  It costs about $60 round-trip to go round-trip to Washington, DC.

Tolls are increasing because teabagger types refuse to accept any tax increases to maintain roads or other travel infrastructure.  Therefore, tolls have to be increased.  Chris Christie of NJ only maintained his pledge to not raise taxes because he allowed a doubling of highway tolls, while cancelling the project the increases were earmarked for.
2013-08-19 02:29:16 AM  
5 votes:
images.sodahead.com
2013-08-19 08:47:29 AM  
4 votes:
Okay, this is all actually hilarious the more I look into it.  Where to start!

The bridge to the south of the one in question is the Mount Hope Bridge.  It was constructed and maintained by the private Mount Hope Bridge Company.  However, "On October 24, 1929, about five months behind schedule, the $5,000,000 bridge was opened to traffic. It was owned by the Mount Hope Bridge Company as a privatetoll bridge, with the initial toll costing 60 cents one way, and $1 for a round-trip. By 1931, the Bridge company went bankrupt, and Rudolf F. Haffenreffer, a prominent local brewer, acquired the bridge in receivership. [...] In 1954, with the company in receivership, the Mount Hope Bridge was purchased by the State of Rhode Island. The bridge's toll was eventually reduced from 60 cents to 30 cents for a one-way trip. It was finally discontinued in 1998, after calculations indicated that the toll was not high enough to cover the cost of collecting it." -source wiki

So in 1954, the state owned it and there were no tolls.  To accomplish this, the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority was founded.  Fast forward and switch gears a bit.  In 1966, another bridge was constructed by the private Parsons Brinckerhoff construction firm.  Noteworthy because they also designed and built the Garden State Parkway in NJ.  Hurray for them, amirite?  Anyway, this construction was undertaken by the state, and they appear to have levied tolls, but I can't confirm that.  Only current tolls are available.  But it was also operated by the state through RITBA.

Around this time, 1966, RITBA began construction of the Claiborne Pell Bridge.  Another toll bridge going from island to island.  It was opened in 1969.  Tolls are 4 bucks each way.  Fast forward again!  It's 2009 and the old ass Sakkonet River Truss Bridge is falling the hell apart.  A new suspension bridge is commissioned.  Now it's 2012, the bridge is ready to open, but it was expensive.  The state was low on cash and apparently RITBA was partially privatized by allowing private investment firm VION to bail them out and and become partial owners.  Immediately thereafter, they voted internally to increase tolls on the Claiborne Pell Bridge, with subsequently scheduled hikes every three years afterwards.  They were forced to hold public hearings though, and they were pressured into coming up with a different solution to a nearly 220 million dollar budget shortfall.  They chose to levy this 10 cent toll on the new Sakonnet River Bridge.


TLDR Version:
So to break this down, a private company was contractually required to close a budget shortfall related to the construction of the brand spanking new bridge, and wanted to raise tolls on a completely unrelated bridge to do that.  When public backlash grew too fierce, they changed their mind and levied a TEN CENT toll on the bridge they ACTUALLY NEEDED TO PAY FOR.  And this is tyrannical or something.

Fark these idiots.  They clearly haven't done any of the above research.  They think it's a state decision.  They think this happened in a vacuum.  And they think they're entitled to a fancy new bridge that carries about twice as many people, at the expense of folks crossing a bridge halfway across the state.
2013-08-19 08:37:06 AM  
4 votes:
One of my co-workers is an anti-government type. He bought a house on cul-de-sac at the end of a private road out of principle. Now the road is falling apart but him and the other people along the road can't agree on financing the repairs. The people at the front of the street don't think they should pay for the entire length since they only use the short part to their homes and even for that short part they think others should pay more since most of the traffic is from those living further along the road. His neighbor down at the end of the road doesn't think it needs to be repaired at all because he drives a 4x4 and doesn't mind the ruts and potholes. They forgot their principles briefly and asked the county to repair it. The county agreed to take over control of the road but only if the property owners would grant the county a narrow right of way along the road for use by construction vehicles. Nope... no one was going to allow the gubermint to seize their land!  Never mind they all have acre lots and the right of way would have been around ten feet on each side.

So the road continues to decay and my co-worker's car gets a good workout dodging potholes and plenty of nicks from all the pieces of the road decaying into gravel that gets tossed about by every vehicle... especially the 4x4. It's a thing of beauty and I laugh every time he gets upset that the county won't pave it for them because they're too stubborn to grant a small right-of-way.
2013-08-19 07:20:57 AM  
4 votes:
Wait, aren't these the same people accusing liberals of wanting "free stuff?"  Their lack of self awareness is staggering.

That said, if these people live on an island that connects by a bridge to the mainland, perhaps closing the bridge and eliminating the cost altogether is the way to go.
2013-08-19 09:16:50 AM  
3 votes:

derpy: First: I used to live there. People who live on Aqidneck Island and/or Tiverton can damned well afford to pay for their bridge. Seriously. These people own boats and waterfront property.

Second: This is a user fee, not a tax.  It's the exact sort of regressive money scheme these guys usually support, on par with sales tax and flat income tax.


You'll find that the more people can afford to pay for things, the less they feel that they should.
2013-08-19 07:15:10 AM  
3 votes:
Every bridge should have a toll. Free bridges are socialism.
2013-08-19 04:56:12 AM  
3 votes:

propasaurus: "It's a working man's bridge," she said. "You stand out there in the morning during the week, as opposed to Saturday and Sunday, it's full of people going to work."

Yeah! And working men should get free bridges!


Now Tea Party "Patriots" want free stuff from Obama?
2013-08-19 02:37:09 AM  
3 votes:
Bridges don't spontaneously manifest out of the ether.  They have to be paid for via taxes or tolls.  Personally, I prefer the tax route as paying tolls creates traffic backups and is a general PITA, but somehow I doubt the teabaggers would support that either.
2013-08-19 09:49:24 AM  
2 votes:
Tolls are stupid and regressive.  But I realized something.  Republicans like regressive taxes because it fuels anti-tax sentiments, which in turns lets them run on cutting taxes for the rich.  People who vote republican do so because of the kinds of taxes republicans support.
2013-08-19 09:13:15 AM  
2 votes:
First: I used to live there. People who live on Aqidneck Island and/or Tiverton can damned well afford to pay for their bridge. Seriously. These people own boats and waterfront property.

Second: This is a user fee, not a tax.  It's the exact sort of regressive money scheme these guys usually support, on par with sales tax and flat income tax.
2013-08-19 08:58:57 AM  
2 votes:

Jackson Herring: BeesNuts: Okay, this is all actually hilarious the more I look into it.  Where to start!

Oh god damn it.


I know right?

Notabunny: Muta: I hate stopping for tolls.  They should just increase taxes to cover the cost of maintaining the bridge.


Interestingly enough, they can't finance this bridge with taxes because of the nature of the contract between the state and the RITBA.

"No tax dollars, state or local, are received by the Authority for debt service or expenses incurred in the operation and maintenance of the bridges and associated buildings and grounds. Rather, all obligations are satisfied with funds received in the form of toll revenue and investment income."

+

"A trust agreement between the Authority and bondholders requires the former to maintain and operate the bridges in an efficient and economical manner. The Authority is at all times to maintain the bridges in good repair and sound operational condition, and to make all necessary repairs, renewals, and replacements."


=


We have to pay for it, but we can't take any money from the state.  And if we leverage investments too much, we cede control over those bridges to private companies.
2013-08-19 08:46:51 AM  
2 votes:
There's really no hope for this country, is there?

Sometime during the 80s and 90s, the media and powers that be stopped publicly laughing at these people.  And now we've given them a voice and the idiot GOP gave them political power.

USA! USA! USA!
2013-08-19 08:06:04 AM  
2 votes:
FTA:  Even 10 cents is too much for Patty Kelly, of Tiverton, who painted the word "tolls" with an X through it in pink on a white T-shirt for the event. In tough economic times, she said, government should look for things to cut, not new ways to get money from residents.

Maybe the government should get rid of that bridge as a cost saving measure.

This nation is drowning in its own stupidity.
2013-08-19 07:41:18 AM  
2 votes:

cram_hole: So they are protesting a 10 cent toll...how much did those shirts and signs cost? Or is this one of those principal things, where you spend $500,000 in legal fees to not pay someone $50.


No one every said teabaggers were smart.
2013-08-19 07:40:02 AM  
2 votes:
So they are protesting a 10 cent toll...how much did those shirts and signs cost? Or is this one of those principal things, where you spend $500,000 in legal fees to not pay someone $50.
2013-08-19 07:38:48 AM  
2 votes:
Even 10 cents is too much for Patty Kelly, of Tiverton, who painted the word "tolls" with an X through it in pink on a white T-shirt for the event. In tough economic times, she said, government should look for things to cut

Such as bridge-building, bridge-maintenance etc.
2013-08-19 07:33:35 AM  
2 votes:

Muta: I hate stopping for tolls.  They should just increase taxes to cover the cost of maintaining the bridge.


This. I'm pretty sure the Tea Party wasn't the only group against the tolls. Bridges are ALREADY choke points. Adding a toll booth or three doesn't help anyone.
2013-08-19 07:22:25 AM  
2 votes:
I guess Tea Party Patriots are all about paying for things with usage fees when it they're not the ones using it.
2013-08-19 07:13:56 AM  
2 votes:
A lot cheaper than having to buy a boat to get across.
2013-08-19 07:00:38 AM  
2 votes:
Angie Isadore, of Portsmouth, as she sat in a folding chair alongside the highway, wearing a shirt that said "Obama lied, Freedom died"

Did Obama make a campaign promise not to allow tolls on some bridge in Bumfark, Nowhere?

Even 10 cents is too much for Patty Kelly, of Tiverton, who painted the word "tolls" with an X through it in pink on a white T-shirt for the event. In tough economic times, she said, government should look for things to cut, not new ways to get money from residents.
"I don't get a raise from my boss when I can't pay my bills," she said.


First - not asking for and getting raises could be part reason you can't pay your bills.
Secondly - instead of a toll, howsabout we start the 'things to cut' list off with bridges over the Sakonnet River?
2013-08-19 02:59:49 PM  
1 vote:
How do the economics of this work.  $0.10 is not much money and you'd need to collect about 150 tolls per hour just to pay minimum wage to each toll booth attendant.  That works out to 2.5 cars per minute per booth and if it takes 7.5 seconds per toll transaction (8 per minute) then 1/3 of the collected toll money goes simply to wages.  Add the cost of the toll equipment, upkeep, managing the change etc. and there can't be much if any money left over to actually maintain the bridge.

Not against tolls, but this seems economically non-viable.
2013-08-19 02:39:33 PM  
1 vote:

derpy: I know this is fark, and serious opinions are not welcome, but if you want to allow locals to cross the bridge for free and just charge tourists and out-of towners, just do this:


Why should the locals get a free ride? It's not the tourists' fault they decided to live on an island.
2013-08-19 11:06:41 AM  
1 vote:
My question is if the arsonist will be charged with terrorism charges. Trying to burn down a bridge because for a political purpose is text-book terrorism. Actual or threatened violence against people or property for the purpose of furthering a political goal or agenda.
2013-08-19 11:04:11 AM  
1 vote:
Maybe they should build their own bridge out of patriotic t-shirts and boot straps.
2013-08-19 09:22:08 AM  
1 vote:
Maybe the Tea Partiers would prefer a free market solution?   A for-profit company could put up a bridge and charge whatever the market will bear, which I'm guessing is going to be a hell-of-a-lot more expensive than 10 cents a trip.
2013-08-19 09:07:14 AM  
1 vote:
Looks more like a frat initiation.

There were no tolls in Texas before Fearless Leader, except in the godless big cities of Houston and Dallas.

No gun-toting, bible-thumping, sheep-loving normal Texans in normal Texas would ever have a Yankee-style toll, much less the Tea Sip Partiers. Now, it's tolls everywhere. You can't go to the corner store without paying tolls three times. Hell, you have to walk through a toll booth just to get to the living room in some spots.

Oh. There are so many tolls, so many campaign donors that EZPass doesn't work. In fact you need 3 or 4 different toll stickers to cover most of the toll roads. Who wants to roll down a window in 100° heat?

The bookies have Perry down as retiring in one of the countries that got the toll contracts, probably Spain..


upload.wikimedia.org
2013-08-19 09:02:09 AM  
1 vote:
Teabaggers are stupid, violent, dangerous people.
2013-08-19 08:47:38 AM  
1 vote:

EngineerAU: One of my co-workers is an anti-government type. He bought a house on cul-de-sac at the end of a private road out of principle. Now the road is falling apart but him and the other people along the road can't agree on financing the repairs. The people at the front of the street don't think they should pay for the entire length since they only use the short part to their homes and even for that short part they think others should pay more since most of the traffic is from those living further along the road. His neighbor down at the end of the road doesn't think it needs to be repaired at all because he drives a 4x4 and doesn't mind the ruts and potholes. They forgot their principles briefly and asked the county to repair it. The county agreed to take over control of the road but only if the property owners would grant the county a narrow right of way along the road for use by construction vehicles. Nope... no one was going to allow the gubermint to seize their land!  Never mind they all have acre lots and the right of way would have been around ten feet on each side.

So the road continues to decay and my co-worker's car gets a good workout dodging potholes and plenty of nicks from all the pieces of the road decaying into gravel that gets tossed about by every vehicle... especially the 4x4. It's a thing of beauty and I laugh every time he gets upset that the county won't pave it for them because they're too stubborn to grant a small right-of-way.


Your CSB is a near-perfect allegory for the Tea Party movement. I farking love it.
2013-08-19 08:40:21 AM  
1 vote:
Bridges increase the revenue generated from taxes.  People need to stop pretending they're an expense, when in reality they're an asset.
2013-08-19 08:08:44 AM  
1 vote:

Muta: I hate stopping for tolls.  They should just increase taxes to cover the cost of maintaining the bridge.


The Libertarian mantra is that there should be usage fees to cover services that you use, so paying for water, air (read Heinlein), police, fire....and roads and bridges.
2013-08-19 08:04:27 AM  
1 vote:
No tolls? No Problem! Who needs to pay for things like repairs and infrastructure upkeep.

i39.tinypic.com

WHY WON'T OBAMA GIVE US FEDERAL FUNDS TO FIX THIS!!!!
2013-08-19 07:59:25 AM  
1 vote:

Muta: I thought they were moving to Brooklyn.

[www.providencejournal.com image 620x413]


Anyone else have the urge to drive out there...just to give these morons the finger?
2013-08-19 07:57:39 AM  
1 vote:

Smidge204: I say we knock the bridge down in the middle of a Sunday night and never speak of these people again.


And when they whine about building the bridge, charge the people living on the island a $10,000 assess to rebuild their bridge and a $.20 toll to maintain it.
2013-08-19 07:55:21 AM  
1 vote:
I say we knock the bridge down in the middle of a Sunday night and never speak of these people again.

God help them if one of them finds a conch shell.
=Smidge=
2013-08-19 07:54:07 AM  
1 vote:
FTFA: John Vitkevich, a spokesman for the anti-toll group, said he knew nothing about the arson and hoped that no one who was working in the effort to overturn the toll had anything to do with it. He said political action, not vandalism, would be the way to roll the tolls back. He suggested that the police investigate whether the arson was done by toll supporters as a way of embarrassing toll opponents.

Oh, wow.  He immediately jumped right to the 'false flag' conspiracy derp when asked about the arson.
2013-08-19 07:53:22 AM  
1 vote:
If you cross it twice a day for work, that's $1/week.  Go to Starbucks one less time a month, fatties.
2013-08-19 07:37:36 AM  
1 vote:

doglover: Muta: I hate stopping for tolls.  They should just increase taxes to cover the cost of maintaining the bridge.

This. I'm pretty sure the Tea Party wasn't the only group against the tolls. Bridges are ALREADY choke points. Adding a toll booth or three doesn't help anyone.


Not necessarily.  Many new toll roads are all electronic.  No toll booths.  That being said, electronic tolls mask increases.  People don't get as upset if they don't have to pull the money out of their wallet each time.
2013-08-19 07:36:51 AM  
1 vote:
They don't want tolls or taxes or free bridges.

They want government out of everything and the Koch Bros to make the bridge. Then it should be free like the Internet.
2013-08-19 07:32:26 AM  
1 vote:

GoldSpider: The Tea Party ideology boiled down:  "We don't want to pay for things!"


That's tyranny!   If God had wanted us to pay for roads and bridges he wouldn't have put them there.
2013-08-19 07:27:53 AM  
1 vote:
So, were they supporting an increase in taxes to pay for the bridge?  Holy cognitive dissonance batman!
2013-08-19 07:24:16 AM  
1 vote:

OneTimed: You gotta pay the troll toll to get inside this boy's soul hole


FTFY
2013-08-19 07:12:19 AM  
1 vote:
You gotta pay the troll toll to get inside this boy's soul
2013-08-19 07:08:16 AM  
1 vote:
This isn't the burning of the Gaspee... and these aren't patriots.
2013-08-19 06:33:06 AM  
1 vote:

SurfaceTension: doglover: fark toll bridges. Pain in the ass to stop and pay tolls when you're driving.

EZPass FTW


That's also a pain in the ass. Much less, I'll grant you, but still slows things down.

What they should do is just not have toll bridges. Either make the whole road a turnpike or free.

Then again I grew up in Pittsburgh. If every bridge required a dime to cross I'd still be waiting in traffic from 10 years ago to get to the airport.
2013-08-19 06:23:17 AM  
1 vote:

doglover: fark toll bridges. Pain in the ass to stop and pay tolls when you're driving.


EZPass FTW
2013-08-19 03:11:00 AM  
1 vote:
Tolls aren't taxes. They're tolls. A tax is a tax.

Just clearing that up for article guy.
2013-08-19 03:03:59 AM  
1 vote:
I don't recall Obama promising there would be no tolls on this bridge.
2013-08-19 02:58:14 AM  
1 vote:
dillanweems.com
 
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