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Reblogged:Stoll: We Don't Need a DoT

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In a humorous column, Ira Stoll comments on an aspect of our nation's widespread shortages I had not known about.

Recall that, amidst what the news media have been calling "supply chain issues," some conservatives had been calling Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg an "amateur," as if central planning could work with the right people in place.

Even if you buy that snake oil, it is arguably ridiculous to blame Buttigieg, who has been in office a scant nine months. Besides, he's been home raising children since August.

I can almost hear late night legend Johnny Carson saying I did not know that. But Stoll does, and makes the point that maybe he can stay there:
Booklyn_Bridge.jpg
Page Robert Ripley: The structure in the background mysteriously arose earlier in America's history despite the lack of a federal transportation bureaucracy at the time. (Image by Josh Miller, via Unsplash, license.)
America somehow managed to survive from independence in 1776 all the way to the passage of the Department of Transportation Act in 1966 without a secretary of transportation or a department of transportation. Americans in the cities and states had managed to transport themselves places even in the absence a federal department devoted to the task.

The New York City subway had been built. The San Francisco cable cars were running. The Brooklyn Bridge, the Golden Gate Bridge, the transcontinental railroad, the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel, the Sumner and Callahan Tunnels beneath Boston Harbor, the George Washington Bridge, the St. Lawrence Seaway -- all were completed without the existence of a federal department of transportation.
Yeah, and all such projects take forever now, too! you might also think.

And, yes, Stoll does go there.

Stoll hasn't written another Atlas Shrugged by a long shot, but he does humorously provoke some much-needed thinking with his piece, and I'd pass the word.

Just the fact that our country got along fine for nearly two centuries without Buttigieg's entire department is worth reminding people about, if for no other reason than that it can fend off people taking our status quo for granted or worse.

-- CAV

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