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Re: Governor Christie halts new train tunnel into Manhattan due to cost overun
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Well said.

Our highways are top-notch and our mass transit blows.

Posted on: 2012/4/12 13:38
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Re: Governor Christie halts new train tunnel into Manhattan due to cost overun
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I'm sure if this were a highway project there would have been no "cost overrun." :/

Posted on: 2012/4/10 10:52
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Re: Governor Christie halts new train tunnel into Manhattan due to cost overun
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NYTIMES:
Report Disputes Christie’s Basis for Halting Tunnel

"Before Mr. Christie declared the tunnel dead, his transportation advisers told state legislators that they had discussed taking money from the project to fill the transportation trust fund, which was almost empty."

Enjoy those roads.

Posted on: 2012/4/10 9:28
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While not great for the rest of the state, its probably beneficial to Jersey City's office market. The 7 would have brought direct access to Long Island City from Secaucus and one transfer rides for most of the state, meaning Long Island City would suddenly have a huge leg up in accessibility over Jersey City. The markets are similar and have been going after similar tenants over the last fear years and have attempted to position themselves as the cheaper alternative to midtown and lower Manhattan.

But that said, there is a lot of lost property value in Hoboken and Weehawken without that subway extension. And the Amtrak tunnel still on the table would only add 13 new trains at peak, vs. the 25 or so through ARC.

Posted on: 2012/4/4 10:31
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not surprising, MTA says #7 train won't be extended to NJ anytime soon.

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2012 ... of_subway_line_to_nj.html

Posted on: 2012/4/4 9:34
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Re: Governor Christie halts new train tunnel into Manhattan due to cost overun
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Dahood wrote:
A job is a job. Every year a lot of students come out of high school. Not everyone of them will go on to join college for various reasons. They need jobs too. A large number of students coming out of JC school system probably belong to this category. Mayor Bloomberg does not think the same way as you do because he is smart. Calling some lower paying job, which needs as much hard work as yours, as bullshit shows what kind of person you are. It is pointless to discuss with people like you.


Not every job is created equal, just as every tax receipt is not created equal.

If you are arguing: "I want a job at Hunts Point Market and New Jersey should spend money to bring it here," you make an excellent example of how self interest never serves good public good.

Moving the market isn't creating jobs. Its not even moving jobs from one of the country to this area. New Jersey tax incentives aren't keeping jobs here. The jobs aren't moving the jobs to Detroit or Kansas or Mexico or Thailand. You don't need a work visa to get a job in New York state.

If you are arguing: "Creating tax incentives for blue collar jobs has a better rate of return than providing access to high paying white collar jobs in Manhattan," you are either making incorrect assumptions, working with faulty data or simply don't know what you are talking about.

Maybe the market would bring jobs to New Jersey, maybe about 3,000 blue collar union jobs. Given that you believe these jobs to be so excellent, why would the existing employees give them up just because they moved 15 miles west? This isn't job creation.

And not only will New Jersey end up giving away millions in tax incentives, but we'll also gain higher costs in maintaining the roadways servicing the facility, increased congestion, and higher pollution.

And for what? $1,500 a year in income tax? $2,000? Compare that to the tax bills of the white collar workers in Manhattan. Shorter commutes to the high paying white collar jobs brings in more in state income tax because salaries are higher and will taxed at a higher rate. Those people will also spend more money generating more sales tax. They will have larger, more expensive houses, meaning they will pay more in property taxes. They will have fewer children and rely on fewer services for the tax dollars they generate.

Take for example, the Regional Plan Association report that analyzed property value and transit access:

"A statistical analysis of the effect of three recent improvements to NJ TRANSIT’s rail system on home values predicts that ARC – a new commuter rail tunnel to Midtown Manhattan – could add a cumulative $18 billion to home values within two miles of NJ TRANSIT and Metro-North Port Jervis and Pascack Valley train stations"

http://www.rpa.org/pdf/RPA-The-ARC-Effect.pdf

Posted on: 2012/3/27 0:05
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Re: Governor Christie halts new train tunnel into Manhattan due to cost overun
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Dahood, no need to call people names.

If you look at the big (global) picture, all those kids coming out of JC high schools will need to compete for jobs with Asian kids.

Who are killing the best of America in Harvard admissions.

If you are not the brightest AND the hardest working, you can wash dishes.

Which is what JC education is all about.

Posted on: 2012/3/26 17:34
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A job is a job. Every year a lot of students come out of high school. Not everyone of them will go on to join college for various reasons. They need jobs too. A large number of students coming out of JC school system probably belong to this category. Mayor Bloomberg does not think the same way as you do because he is smart. Calling some lower paying job, which needs as much hard work as yours, as bullshit shows what kind of person you are. It is pointless to discuss with people like you.

Posted on: 2012/3/26 17:10
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Re: Governor Christie halts new train tunnel into Manhattan due to cost overun
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ianmac47 wrote:


The hunts point market? Really? That's the kind of low rent bullshit jobs you want? How about the legal or the finance jobs that start in the six figures? How about the executives, ad men, publishers, and media jobs? You know, the jobs that pay enough to actually maintain an upper middle class lifestyle while supporting the rest of the state? Yeah, those people want to be in Manhattan.


The Hunts Point Market jobs are good union pay scale jobs for working and lower middle class workers.

Most people who post on this board don't want those jobs. Others would.

Posted on: 2012/3/26 16:11
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Dahood wrote:
JC office market is a bargain compared to NYC. NBC sports made a move to CT for the same reason. The Hunts Point market would have moved to NJ, if NYC had not taken any action. NJ just needs to reduce the property tax burden on its residents to become more attractive. And we should stop acting second fiddle to NYC in this competitive world.


The hunts point market? Really? That's the kind of low rent bullshit jobs you want? How about the legal or the finance jobs that start in the six figures? How about the executives, ad men, publishers, and media jobs? You know, the jobs that pay enough to actually maintain an upper middle class lifestyle while supporting the rest of the state? Yeah, those people want to be in Manhattan.

Posted on: 2012/3/26 15:58
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JC office market is a bargain compared to NYC. NBC sports made a move to CT for the same reason. The Hunts Point market would have moved to NJ, if NYC had not taken any action. NJ just needs to reduce the property tax burden on its residents to become more attractive. And we should stop acting second fiddle to NYC in this competitive world.

Posted on: 2012/3/26 12:20
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Re: Governor Christie halts new train tunnel into Manhattan due to cost overun
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Dahood wrote:
You are talking about a temporary solution. Having all the jobs in one place and asking people to commute 2-3 hours a day is a bad idea. NJ can use the money to aggressively woo jobs from NYC and other places in the country to places like JC, Newark and some other suburban places. It's a real shame we do not have a decent big city that can compete with NYC and Philly.


You are tragically misguided. Jersey City still has empty office space and much of the planned office space has since been shifted to residential development (see also 77 Hudson Street). The market simply doesn't agree with the claim that "having all the jobs in one place" is a bad idea.

I would agree with you that 2 hour commutes are unsustainable, which actually is another good argument in support of expanding rail services. New Jersey isn't a very large state. Travel times are long not because of the distance traveled but because of highway congestion that can be relieved by adding more commuters to trains and getting people out of cars. New rail services can be even faster by using modern technologies. But none of those options are realistic possibilities without expanding access across the Hudson River.

Posted on: 2012/3/26 9:05
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Re: Governor Christie halts new train tunnel into Manhattan due to cost overun
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You are talking about a temporary solution. Having all the jobs in one place and asking people to commute 2-3 hours a day is a bad idea. NJ can use the money to aggressively woo jobs from NYC and other places in the country to places like JC, Newark and some other suburban places. It's a real shame we do not have a decent big city that can compete with NYC and Philly.

Posted on: 2012/3/26 6:58
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Re: Governor Christie halts new train tunnel into Manhattan due to cost overun
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The bottom line is that there are more people living in the north Jersey suburbs commuting to Manhattan. There are also increasing delays on NJ Transit ( http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2012 ... pment_increases_nj_t.html ).

Without the ARC tunnel, more of those suburban commuters are going to be crowding in on the PATH. More of those suburban commuters are going to be jamming through the Holland tunnel and cutting through the downtown to get there.

So its all well and good for the anti-government people that the tunnel was cancelled, but for everyone living in the real world, the very problems that are so often criticized could have been assuaged by the completion of the tunnel.

Christie doesn't give a shit about New Jersey's future. All he's concerned with is the White House, and to hell with who he burns on the way there.

Posted on: 2012/3/26 1:37
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I am always happy to see this thread pop up. Great job Gov Christie in stopping the projected bleeding of tax payer money. Below was just the start. Any one remember the joke of where all the state money went for the big School Building Projects? It was gone in 60 seconds into the pockets of friends and family of politicians. They would snatch up land and buildings right before decisions on which school was going to be built next. They would then charge the state an arm and a leg to buy the property for the school.

Tunnel Decision Has Ripple Effects
By ANNE MILLER

A McDonald's restaurant used to stand on Tonnelle Avenue in North Bergen, but New Jersey Transit tore down the golden arches to help prepare the New Jersey side for the $8.7 billion rail tunnel to Midtown Manhattan.

When Gov. Chris Christie canceled the planned tunnel under the Hudson River last month, he effectively nixed the need for the McDonald's lot, for which the state paid $3.5 million. Now the property is sitting vacant—and off the local tax rolls—upsetting North Bergen Mayor Nicholas Sacco.

"Having a tunnel, at least there's a benefit to the town," Mr. Sacco said. "Now there's no benefit at all."

Indeed, the decision to halt work on the rail tunnel has had a ripple effect in northern New Jersey, halting or at least slowing other projects tied to the tunnel. Gov. Christie said he had to pull the plug on the tunnel to avoid projected cost overruns.

The state had spent around $29 million on property for the tunnel, most of it in North Bergen.

In addition to the McDonald's land, NJ Transit paid $7 million for a storage facility and $15.75 million for a warehouse property, according to records provided by North Bergen administrator Chris Pianese.

Full WSJ piece….

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001 ... 04575618571271498934.html

*** ***

$3.5 million for a Mickey D’s that was always empty because it was so dangerous to get in and out of the parking lot off of Tonnelle Avenue.

$7 million for a piece of land with about 8 steel “The General” type storage sheds on it.


HC strikes again!!!

Posted on: 2012/3/26 0:56
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Re: Governor Christie halts new train tunnel into Manhattan due to cost overun
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Of course you should, if you're of the opinion you can never actually have a good government. Looking at the places in the world with little government and the places in the world with more government, but a government that functions better than ours, my preference is for a better run government. I tend to believe our government is poorly run because lots of people want it to be poorly run. I'd rather fix that.

Of course opinions vary, lots of people want less government no matter what and that's a fair enough position, just not one I happen to agree with.

Posted on: 2012/3/25 17:02
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Those who advocate for big government on this forum are foolish. Look at NJ, Hudson county and Jersey City and then argue for big government. As far as taxes ae concerned, the rich aren't leaving NYS and NJ without any reason. If a small businessman or a doctor should pay his fair share of taxes, so should a drug dealer. Why shouldn't the being it's of public sector employees be in line with the private sector employees?

Posted on: 2012/3/25 12:35
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moobycow wrote:
The Federal Gov't as a percentage of GDP was actually trending down for a good long while right up until it all went to hell and the recent uptick in government size as a % of GDP is all due to receivables.

http://www.supportingevidence.com/Gov ... ercent_GDP_over_time.html

Lots and lots has gone wrong in this country in recent times, but little is due to the government just getting bigger. Bad government is a big problem but lots and lots of places get by just fine with larger governments that are better run than ours.

IMO our problems have more to due with bad government that anything else. Unfortunately, whether due to bad design or corruption or whatever just about all government in the US is bad government in recent times. It's not like that everywhere.


If our gov't is bad, shouldn't we want less, not more?

Posted on: 2012/3/25 12:20
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The Federal Gov't as a percentage of GDP was actually trending down for a good long while right up until it all went to hell and the recent uptick in government size as a % of GDP is all due to receivables.

http://www.supportingevidence.com/Gov ... ercent_GDP_over_time.html

Lots and lots has gone wrong in this country in recent times, but little is due to the government just getting bigger. Bad government is a big problem but lots and lots of places get by just fine with larger governments that are better run than ours.

IMO our problems have more to due with bad government that anything else. Unfortunately, whether due to bad design or corruption or whatever just about all government in the US is bad government in recent times. It's not like that everywhere.

Posted on: 2012/3/25 10:17
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Funny, isn't it - how the Swiss can have a very strong economy, and a history of surviving in the middle of the cesspool that is Europe - through TWO world wars, - while having the government based on a VERY strong federative principles.


You mention things things like "federative principles" and "strong economy" that have nothing to do with "surviving TWO world wars".

The main reason they survived two world wars is the terrain. They're almost completely mountainous and incredibly hard to invade. Their politics had somewhere between very little and nothing at all to do with it.


It's ironic - the US also has a terrain that makes it extremely easy to defend itself. And yet, we find ourselves attacking more countries than any other in this generation. Things that make you go hmmm... -_-

As for the economy, borisp does have a point in that America's economy grew while the Fed was much smaller than it was now. It's hard to argue that a centralized economy is good for business. The Fed is stronger than it's even been now and our economy is also declining..

Posted on: 2012/3/25 9:35
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The main reason they survived two world wars is the terrain.


The original plans of the German army in WWI called for forces to move through the lowlands of Switzerland. The plans were changed because the Swiss were (and still are) so well armed. At the time, the Swiss could muster over a million well trained, well armed citizen soldiers almost overnight.

When I visit Switzerland (1980's) as a kid, I watch in awe as jets staged dogfight between the peaks and tanks rolled up to the ski resorts. The Swiss army was having some sort of exercise. It was kind of surreal seeing a machine gun nest being dug next to a ski lift. The Swiss are at peace because they are always ready for war.

Mountains didn't stop the Wehrmacht from subduing the Balkans in WWII.

Posted on: 2012/3/25 9:27
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Funny, isn't it - how the Swiss can have a very strong economy, and a history of surviving in the middle of the cesspool that is Europe - through TWO world wars, - while having the government based on a VERY strong federative principles.


You mention things things like "federative principles" and "strong economy" that have nothing to do with "surviving TWO world wars".

The main reason they survived two world wars is the terrain. They're almost completely mountainous and incredibly hard to invade. Their politics had somewhere between very little and nothing at all to do with it.

Posted on: 2012/3/24 22:53
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CatDog wrote:
I really find the idea that we'd be better off with a tiny federal government laughable. It’s not always great, but if we were basically 50 different countries competing with each other, with a mishmash of totally different laws in each one, we’d not be the rich superpower we are now.


Yeah, I know, diversity - who wants that? (shudder)



BTW, I wonder how we managed to BECOME a superpower, while having that "mishmash". By your reasoning, Brasil, Argentina, Australia - all should have surpassed us.

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Probably would have been overrun by the French or Spanish or even the Brits.


Are those the same Brits that live in a small country the size of Michigan?

Funny, isn't it - how the Swiss can have a very strong economy, and a history of surviving in the middle of the cesspool that is Europe - through TWO world wars, - while having the government based on a VERY strong federative principles.

If that works for THEIR size - how can you possibly claim that it can't work for us?


Me thinks that the REAL problem is - competition.

You want to implement your ideas - but you do not want us to be able to compare it to the state next door that didn't implement them.

This is what motivates you to demand that everyone should march in formation.

Posted on: 2012/3/24 20:12
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wNYC has some interesting information on residential commuter patterns to New York City. Unsurprisingly, North Jersey is adding more Manhattan bound commuters.

http://www.wnyc.org/articles/new-jers ... rowing-commuter-counties/

Posted on: 2012/3/24 13:31
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I really find the idea that we'd be better off with a tiny federal government laughable. It’s not always great, but if we were basically 50 different countries competing with each other, with a mishmash of totally different laws in each one, we’d not be the rich superpower we are now. Probably would have been overrun by the French or Spanish or even the Brits.

JohnR, I guarantee you benefit a lot by having a strong federal government, and you take advantage of everything it has to offer, at the same time you write dumbass rants comparing Rome to the US.

Gibbons wrote about the fall of the Roman empire 230 years ago, with only a fraction of the texts or historical evidence we have now. He blamed it on Romans becoming pansies, on Christianity making them weak. He simultaneously blamed it on pacifism and on military rule.

Even the real causes of the fall of the Roman Empire don’t even relate to the US right now. Stop being a dickhead.

Posted on: 2011/3/7 14:02
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The idea of "state's rights" is as antiquated as slavery, black powder rifles, and the quills used to sign the Constitution.

Posted on: 2011/3/7 13:33
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JohnR,

The problem with "states rights" is it's often a race to bottom whether it's racial discrimination or the way deregulating interstate interest rates led to the ubiquitous but usurious credit card industry we have now.

As you say you are a student of history, surely you know that the stamp act was to pay down the massive debt Britain took on in the 7 Years or French & Indian War, of which we were great beneficiaries, no longer having the French hemming in our expansion on our northern & western frontiers. The resentment was only partly justified. But it had hardly been 100 years since the northern colonist's Puritan forebears had lopped off the head of a unresponsive king, and they hadn't forgotten. Had Britain allowed the colonies the representation they had culturally learned to expect in England, history would be different. There still might be a British empire had there been American, Indian, & Australian MP's.

Posted on: 2011/3/7 13:25
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Bring military spending back in line with the proportions the rest of the world spends and a lot of these fiscal "crises" would disappear. It's time to explode the defense/security myth. You could make a strong case that at least half of the U.S.'s "defense" spending is really "offense."

Posted on: 2011/3/7 13:25
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The federal income tax was supposed to be a temporary condition to pay Civil War expenses. Since the whole point of the Boston Tea Party was an objection not only to representation issues, but taxation solely for revenue raising without a specific purpose (ie the Stamp Act), this was never intended to be a core part of our central government. Which is why we survived for over a century without it. It's a travesty. The Constitution explicitly confers the privilege to manage education, for example, to the states. So the federal government creates a massive Dept of Education to violate this, using the loophole of dangling the "optional" carrot of additional funding over each state's head to comply with the mandates that it recognizes the constitution does not grant authority for. And what has this egregious breach of our constitution done for us? We have the highest per capita education spending in the world and are ranked near the bottom of the developed nations totem pole in education results.

We have a two party system which treats voters like sheep, is devoid of any real discussion on political philosophy, and perpetuates using mass-marketed sound bytes. Who's the great defender of our classical liberalism? Ron Paul, the idiot. Great. The whole thing is just depressing. The greatest and most successful political experiment in the history of mankind since ancient Greece and we're going to throw it away because we only elect show ponies, our success is so prolific there's no motivation to strive for more. Reading Edward Gibbon's description of how Rome collapsed and knowing anything about the modern US is downright scary.

NJ gets raped in Congress because its senate votes toe the party line, just as the massive liberal population in the state wants it. You get pork as bribes when your senate votes are iffy.

Posted on: 2011/3/7 13:05
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CatDog wrote:
yeah that's the problem here. The top donor states are all "blue" states that don't complain about federal taxes. The top welfare states are all "red" states that constantly complain about being overtaxed.


Yes, that's sort of my biggest gripe too. At least when top tier taxpayers complain about taxes, it is usually, although not always because they are paying for all sorts of government services they don't feel they ever use (although they overlook a great deal of services like stockholder bailouts). But in the case of federal tax dollars, its the poors in the red states suckling federal milk and honey while deriding paying federal taxes.

Posted on: 2011/3/7 12:09
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