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Congestion Pricing

Thank Goodness for Dear, Glorious Leader Sheldon Silver

Almost exactly one year ago, Harvard economist Edward Glaeser wrote a great little essay for the New York Sun's op/ed page that asked the question, Does New York Suffer From A Soviet Traffic System?:

The Soviet approach to marketsset prices at some controlled price, and then let shortages ensue.Under this system, millions wasted hours queuing and goods went toconsumers with the time to stand on line rather than to consumers whovalued the goods most. Today, you don't need to go through the messyprocess of getting a visa to Cuba or North Korea to see the socialcosts of under-pricing. Right here in New York, we don't chargeanything for using a particularly valuable resource: car access toManhattan streets.

Today, on the very same op/ed page, the Sun's Jacob Gershman praises the New York State Assembly's Soviet-style political apparatus for throwing a wrench into Mayor Bloomberg's congestion pricing plans:

Thank goodness for Sheldon Silver. Mr. Silver, the obstructionist, the political merchant, the dour face of Albany's status quo, is one of the few voices of caution in the intensifying battle over congestion pricing. Whatever the motive, Mr. Silver and one of his colleagues in the Assembly, Richard Brodsky, have been asking the right questions in a debate that could use a dose of reality.

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