Time for "congestion charges" in the US

When I see reactions like this to "Red Ken" Livingstone's "congestion charge" for driving in certain areas of London, my confidence in the wisdom of this policy only increases:

Michele Weininger, a businesswoman from west London, said: "Ken Livingstone has a built-in hatred for people on this side of London. He calls us toffs. What he doesn't realise is that this area is mixed. We voted against this. The riff-raff voted Ken Livingstone in. But we are not riff-raff here. We are decent people."

Yes, Michele, you toff - and now you're going to be a little poorer while you drive around doing your "decent" things.

It is past time for a similar policy in our larger urban centers in the US. I'm thinking particularly of New York (and specifically Manhattan) and San Francisco - both are relatively small in size, making it easy for riff-raff (and, surprisngly, decent people as well) to get around on foot, bike or public transport, as long as the streets are not clogged up with toffs driving their cars everywhere.

Oh, and we might think of taxing the rich while we we're at it.

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