UnThreaded | Threaded | Whole Thread (4) | Ignore Thread Prev | Next
Author: Ziege19 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 271  
Subject: The Poor Tax Date: 5/14/2009 9:11 PM
Post New | Post Reply | Reply Later | Create Poll . Report this Post | Recommend it!
Recommendations: 2
We often overlook just how many ways there are in which the way our society is structured serves to keep the poor poor. Growing up very poor in Detroit, I'm closely acquainted with these. One in particular has bothered me since I was young, and that has been the car-centric design of our infrastructure. In Detroit, at least, it is nearly impossible to participate fully in the economy without access to a car.

This affects the poor in many ways, but I was reminded of one while surfing the net today:

http://www.infrastructurist.com/2009/05/14/car-damage-from-p...

In Los Angeles, poorly maintained roads cost the average driver $700 per year. In Detroit, it's $525. I'm sure there is some progressive effect caused by wealthier drivers having cars that are more expensive to repair, but I have little doubt that the net effect is regressive.

This is just one way our dependence on cars negatively impacts the poor. License fees are regressive. Insurance costs more if you live in a bad neighborhood, and can even cost more if your credit is bad. And someone finding themselves unable to pay this insurance but depending on a car to get them to work, experiences a pressure to drive without insurance that the non-poor do not experience. If they get caught driving without having paid all of these regressive fees, they are then incarcerated and enter the criminal justice system.

The end result is an institution (our transit system) that works against class mobility and against the poor.
Post New | Post Reply | Reply Later | Create Poll . Report this Post | Recommend it!
Print the post  
UnThreaded | Threaded | Whole Thread (4) | Ignore Thread Prev | Next

Announcements

Pencils of Promise - Back to School Drive
"Pencils of Promise works with communities across the globe to build schools and create programs that provide education opportunities for children."
Managing Your Wealth
Our own TMFHockeypop from Rule Your Retirement fame on the TV show Managing Your Wealth.
When Life Gives You Lemons
We all have had hardships and made poor decisions. The important thing is how we respond and grow. Read the story of a Fool who started from nothing, and looks to gain everything.
Post of the Day:
Macro Economics

Should You Be an Index Investor?
What was Your Dumbest Investment?
Share it with us -- and learn from others' stories of flubs.
Community Home
Speak Your Mind, Start Your Blog, Rate Your Stocks

Community Team Fools - who are those TMF's?
Contact Us
Contact Customer Service and other Fool departments here.
Work for Fools?
Winner of the Washingtonian great places to work, and "#1 Media Company to Work For" (BusinessInsider 2011)! Have access to all of TMF's online and email products for FREE, and be paid for your contributions to TMF! Click the link and start your Fool career.
Advertisement