Sunday, September 25, 2011

Makes Me Want To Holler

Money. We make it
'Fore we see it, you take it
Oh, make you wanna holler
The way they do my life.

Friday, September 02, 2011

LTE: Food Trucks

Asheville Tribune Executive Editor David Morgan argues ("Downtown Asheville without restaurants?," 9/1/2011) against the operation of food trucks downtown because they might provide some competition to restaurants and this, in turn, he speculates, would lead to a ghost town.

He first states that it is the government's role to "make the rules for free market competition reasonably equal and fair." He is right. To wit: government should not interfere in economic activity and should allow the greatest possible economic freedom between entrepreneurs and consumers, trading value for value to mutual benefit. But then Mr. Morgan puzzles us when he states that in allowing food trucks to operate downtown, local government is, by doing so, "picking one kind of business that they like or favor;” namely, food trucks.

Yet, Mr. Morgan would have government actively shield restauranteurs from food truck competition. As if Mr. Morgan is advocating that government ought to pick one kind of business that they like or favor; namely, restaurants. This is a contradiction. Mr. Morgan establishes a sound principle and then proceeds to violate it.

It would appear that Mr. Morgan is confused about the proper role of government as well as the rights of business people and their customers. One, food truck operators have a right to conduct a business that does not violate the rights of others. Two, consumers have a right to select from an array of food offerings without the interference of government or newspaper editors. Also, it is not the government's proper role to protect businesses from competition. On the contrary, it is the government's proper role to allow for maximum competition in a free market.

In using the force of government to protect one business over another – restaurants -- it is Mr. Morgan who would use government to violate individual rights and, therefore, turn Asheville into a ghost town by dictating economic activity to free adults.


David Morgan's lame-ass response:
Asheville Tribune LTE

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Candidate Questionnaire: Step Right Up

1. Are you planning to attend “The Step Right Up” on Sept. 22nd?


2. Tell us something about your transportation habits. How do you get around Asheville?

I always drive an automobile wherever I go.

3. What recent advancement in Asheville’s transportation infrastructure do you think has had the greatest impact on our community? Why?

All of the parking decks going up downtown are a great improvement. They help automobile drivers. I'm also happy to hear that city council voted unamimously to approve the lease of 62 new parking spaces from AT&T near Grove Arcade.

4. Even if you haven’t held elected office, you’ve likely been an active member of Asheville’s community. Please describe one thing you’ve done to make our city friendlier to pedestrians, cyclists and/or bus riders.

I've done nothing to make our city friendlier to pedestrians, cyclists and/or bus riders.

5a) As a council member, would you advocate for the implementation of the city’s Bicycle Master Plan? If so, in what specific ways? If not, why not?

I would not advocate the implementation of the city's Bicycle Master Plan. It's not a priority and we can't afford it. People prefer cars. The city’s current resurfacing schedule is 81 years. The priority is paving streets.

5b) If you are a current council member, have you advocated for the implementation of the city’s Bicycle Master Plan? In what specific ways?


6a) As a council member, would you advocate for the implementation of theTransit Master Plan? If you’d advocate for the plan, how would you encourage increasing ridership? If you wouldn’t advocate for the plan, why not?

I do not support implementation of the Transit Master Plan. Transit services should support actual transportation needs and not the development schemes of central planners. The government should get out of the transit business and eliminate regulatory controls that hamper the development of private sector transportation services. The city should immediately develop and publish a Request for Proposals to private contractors to provide transit functions.

6b) If you are a current council member, in what specific ways have you advocated for the passage and/or implementation of the Transit Master Plan? What are some of the challenges with the implementation of the transit plan?


7. What role do you think greenways play in Asheville’s future?

Greenways play a valuable role in Asheville's future but we can't afford them.

8. Past City Councils invested in planning efforts. Our city has a Sustainability Management Plan, a Greenway Master Plan, a Bicycle Master Plan, a Transit Master Plan, and a Pedestrian Thoroughfare Plan. The next step is to fund the implementation of these plans. In these hard economic times, how would you propose to fund these plans? Or, do these plans need to be cut? If you think the plans need to be trimmed, what plans or pieces of plans should be cut?

The cost for implementing all current community plans is $200M. Revenue options are either maxed out, declining or no longer available. The only way to fund any of these programs is to cut spending. The only way to cut spending is to convert the City of Asheville to a contract city that outsources all basic services, other than police and fire, to private industry.

9. What is the most compelling reason to improve transportation options in Asheville?

Actual demonstrated need.