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Concealed Carry Now


Criticizing the OCTA for doing more promoting than studying, the Jurys analysis suggests that Orange County would experience, negligible impact on traffic congestion, less effectiveness than predicted, more expense than predicted, an inflexible system, and no improvement in commuter travel times, energy conservation, or safety.

The Jury went on to instruct OCTA to amend outreach programs to include data on the national experience, to establish and publish measurable goals, and that disinterested experts should provide historical perspectives. The Jury suggested that the public deserves full disclosure of all perceived benefits, drawbacks, costs and impacts that this project would have before it is approved or disapproved.

In short, the Orange County Grand Jury ordered its government transit agency to stop lying.

Perhaps a Grand Jury is needed to look into the Regional Transportation District. RTDs recent cancellation of its public forum on LRT is merely the most recent example in a long history of questionable actions.

The decision to have the Great Debate was approved early in 1999 by the new RTD Board. With a budget of $30,000, six nationally recognized experts were invited to debate both sides of the issue on September 13.The Urban Land Institute, a pro-LRT group, was allowed to become a co-sponsor by contributing an additional $10,000.

Because the question about LRT effectiveness is nationwide, interest was national. C-SPAN and CNN considered coverage. Advocates on both sides looked forward to offering their best arguments.

The debate controversy started when RTD decided to charge a higher admission fee to the general public than to elected officials and bureaucrats. With some free admissions, the anticipated 200 attendees would have produced about $5,000.RTDs decision to cancel the debate will cost RTD more money than to have waived the registration fee altogether. Is it possible that another agenda is at play Is it possible that RTD feared that the debate would put too much information in front of the public immediately prior to its November tax election

RTD deceit has a long history. The 1973 special election that gave RTD its current sales tax base experienced several election irregularities. Voters have yet to be offered the opportunity to re-authorize the 10 year plan approved in 1973.That election authorized 20% to increased bus service. The remainder was for rapid transit construction (not LRT). Having spent the money on bus service, RTD asked for another tax increase in 1980 for LRT.

Undeterred by the 1980 defeat, RTD continued to spend millions without authorization on planning and right-of-way. Finally in 1990 RTD spent $116,000,000 to construct the LRT demonstration line. But before demonstration line performance data was available, RTD proceeded to extend LRT south on Santa Fe Drive. The extension was to cost taxpayers $177,000,000.At RTD the $20,000,000 spent on Santa Fe right-of-way is not a cost because it is hidden. In total, RTD has subversively spent over $300,000,000 on LRT without authorization.

Much of what RTD tells the public is less than true. RTD frequently claims increasing ridership without mentioning that they count boardings, not people. Even those increases are smaller than population growth or RTDs increasing tax take. This means, of course, that unit costs are increasing and market share is decreasing.

The LRT ridership numbers estimated for the I-25 Corridor are 30,000 versus 300,000 for the highway. But the counting methods differ. Similar counting yields that LRTs 3% market share would serve about 10% to 15% as many people as a single highway lane.

RTD has spent millions to propagate the false perception that LRT will relieve traffic congestion and air pollution. It is time that the truth be told. Because RTD cannot be trusted, Colorado should convene a Grand Jury to expose the truth.

Dennis Polhill is a Senior Fellow in Transportation Policy at the Independence Institute, a free-market think tank in Golden, https://i2i.org.


If these people would stop emoting and actually look at the data, they would find that the level of violence in America has little to do with guns. In fact, banning the baby boomers would probably have done more to reduce violence in America than all the gun laws presently in force.

The boomers began maturing in the late 1960s when homicide rates, and the number of gun control laws, began a rapid rise that lasted through 1993.There were 5.1 homicides per 100,000 Americans in 1964.The rate rose to 10.1 in 1974, and fluctuated throughout the 1970s and 80s with peaks at 10.7 in 1980 and 10.5 in 1991.In the last few years for which data are available (and the first few years in which the boomers have become eligible for AARP) the homicide rate has dropped. It was 7.4 per 100,000 in 1997.

Two generations ago, crime rates surged as they did in the in 1960s.nbsp; In 1920, the homicide rate was 5.5. By 1933, it had peaked at 9.6. The problem wasn#39;t baby boomers or the influence of television or the Internet. Rather, national alcohol prohibition had empowered organized crime, and turned some cities into war zones. Prohibition was repealed on December 5, 1933, and the crime rate began to decline immediately.

nbsp;In 1931, before gun control, 67% of homicides were attributed to firearms or explosives. In 1997, after gun control, 67.5% of homicides were firearms-related.nbsp;

Like the crime rate, the suicide rate also appears unrelated to gun availability. Suicides crept upward during World War I. They lifted off from a base of 9.0 per 100,000 residents at the beginning of the 1920s, and rocketed to 16.5 by 1932. They stayed high until World War II, receded to a low of 9.7 in 1957, and peaked at 12.7 in 1987. Rates fell slightly afterwards, to 11.9 in 1995.

The violence crisis-mongers love to talk about the fact that firearms are used 450,00 violent crimes each year. They studiously ignore the fact that guns are used defensively to protect innocent people from violent crime an estimated 2.5 million times each year.

People sincerely concerned about minimizing violence will find the state of affairs in Britain instructive. Like much of the American elite, British officialdom does not consider self-defense a valid reason for owning a gun. After 80 years of progressively stricter gun control laws, Britain passed laws in 1988 and 1997 that banned handguns and required registered owners to surrender their weapons.nbsp;

Unlike those who advocate gun control, British criminals understand that banning firearms helps criminals. Smugglers and clandestine machine shops supply the English underworld with eve
rything from handguns to fully automatic weapons. As a study of British firearms control methods by Colin Greenwood, the Chief Inspector of the West Yorkshire Constabulary, concluded, there is no casein which controls can be shown to have restricted the flow of weapons to criminals, or in any way reduced crime.

Under gun control, English rates of violent crime, gun robbery, and murder have skyrocketed. U.S. murder rates were 17 time those of England and Wales in 1981. By 1996, they were only three times the English rate. In the early 1980s, residents of England and Wales were less likely to be victims of crimes than residents of the U.S. By 1995, English assault and burglary rates were more than 2 times that of the U.S., and overall English crime victimization rates had surpassed those in the U.S.

Because no known form of gun control can keep guns out of criminal hands, gun control laws leave the weak and unprotected at the mercy of armed criminals eager to take advantage of their plight. This means that elected officials in favor of gun control support a public policy that favors criminals and penalizes the law-abiding. Their law-abiding constituents should be asking why in heavens name anyone would want to do that.

Linda Gorman is a Senior Fellow at the Independence Institute, a free-market think tank in Golden, Colorado.

This article, from the Independence Institute staff, fellows and research network, is offered for your use at no charge. Independence Feature Syndicate articles are published for educational purposes only, and the authors speak for themselves. Nothing written here is to be construed as necessarily representing the views of the Independence Institute or as an attempt to influence any election or legislative action.
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