If you were thinking that career politicians are stupid and disconnected from reality, today’s news will add to your confirmation bias, as we just got word that Oregon’s state legislature approved the first-ever bicycle tax in the United States, leaving aficionados flabbergasted to say the least.
Popular wisdom says that bicycles are the vehicle of choice for environmentalists and health-conscious Americans, as they consume very little energy if any and they’re completely safe, as in they emit zero pollutants. However, in her infinite wisdom, Democratic (imagine my shock) Governor Kate Brown decided to sign a bill, a $15.3 billion transportation package respectively, which among other progressive things will put a $15 excise tax on bike sales which have a price tag larger than $200 and a wheel diameter of at least twenty six inches.
The new tax was sold to the general public using the classical mantra “it’s for your own good, peon”, i.e. the money raised from the new tax will be used for improving the life of cyclists. However, environmentalists and anti-tax folk alike were very disturbed hearing the news. A journalist writing for BikePortland, Jonathan Maus respectively, described the new bill as, let me quote: “an unprecedented step in the wrong direction”:
“We are taxing the healthiest, most inexpensive, most environmentally friendly, most efficient, and most economically sustainable form of transportation ever devised by the human species,”
Kate Brown’s decision was also blasted by Bill Currier, Oregon’s Republican Party chairman who was quoted as saying:
[her]“endless obsession with finding new and innovative ways to take money out of the pockets of Oregon taxpayers.”
“She just continues to view the people of her state as nothing more than a piggy bank to fund her efforts to impose job-killing policies .Now add anti-healthy, environmentally-unfriendly policies to that list.”
The new tax is expected to collect an additional 1.2 million dollars annually, money which are to be used for expanding/improving paths/trails for both pedestrians and cyclists. Bicycles are a big deal in Portland Oregon, with more than seven percent of the city dwellers using bicycles when commuting.
And the Left continues to eat its own. Once a tax like that is instituted, it is looked upon as a cash cow and will do nothing but go higher. Liberal Progressives have no clue about what people want. The thing is, Oregon is so overtaxed, they’ve taken in record revenue over the last few years. Evidently, it’s never enough for left’ self-interests.