Despite the fact that the vast majority of Austinites (not Austonians) are opposed to the change, six members of our city council decided to go ahead and start running meters in the evening and on Saturdays.
Of course, this issue has been kicked around for a while, mostly as an anecdote at cocktail parties because no one thought council was dumb to take the idea seriously, except maybe Chris Riley but his time was being consumed with promoting bicycling and trying to get his hands on He-Man’s sword, if you know what I mean (and I think you do). And then the unthinkable happened, the fucking mooks voted for it, led by Lee ‘He Wasn’t Brewster’ Leffingwell and our Mayor Pro Temper. Obviously, yesterday when I first heard about the passage of this execrable idea, I was a little upset. Calvin puts it pretty well…
Now, I’m wondering about motivations. Specifically, I’d like to know what the hell kind of piss poor logic was employed to justify this given the TINY (compared to the overall city budget) incremental increase in revenue versus angering so many people.
RILEY – He was probably focused on shifting people from cars to bikes and saw this as yet another way to encourage behaviors he sees as healthy and nice, thus inflicting on all of us his lame ideas regarding sustainability and new urbanism. No one has explained to him that many go out downtown to get laid and that the goal is kind of hard to achieve when you smell like a wet dog who’s been sleeping in garbage. He also may have been distracted while thinking about all the changes he’d make with regard to decor if he could take Castle Grayskull.
SHADE – Yeah, I think it’s finally dawned on Randi that this is, you know, REAL FUCKING WORK and that maybe it’s time to turn back to the warm embrace of a .com where you don’t have to answer to people, there’s no real accountability and no one really cares until the VC’s have been bled completely dry and are refusing to cough up another round. I also think there is a possibility she may have been daydreaming about staring into her own navel. I’m glad that Randi thinks it’s fantastic to help the private garages with public funds. What I’d really like to know is why the hell the folks who assrape the citizens of Austin who venture downtown on a nightly basis need taxpayer funds and why Randi is so hellbent on helping said assrapists.
SPELLMAN – Who knows. I can see this as possibly some kind of intricate plot to draw Mike out on something, then cut his throat but I kinda doubt that since Spellman’s about as Machiavellian as Pipi Longstocking and as clever as the shoe hanging from that power line running across Langston near it’s intersection with Loyola.
LEFFINGWELL – Seriously, I can put up with some of the dipshit ideas and votes but this is just REALLY dumb. Not that you’ll run again so any threats are largely irrelevant. I can honestly say I knew what we were getting into when we voted for you so most of your decisions have been unremarkable and unsurprising. However, this shows a level of ineptitude that even Release The McCracken didn’t posses. Stupid, stupid move.
COLE – Sheryl? Baby, you just voted not to be Mayor. Do you understand that? Here, let me put it into some boilerplate that’s probably more familiar to you
The Author represents and warrants to the Member, including any and all of her agents, employees, servants, assignees, and heirs, that Author has reviewed the vote committed by Member and has reckoned, determined and assessed that said vote will irrevocably and irreparably damage, harm and diminish Member’s political future and proximately cause deleterious consequences which may include but are not limited to public shame, humiliation, infamy, ridicule, loss of re-election bid, future losses in bids for election to higher office, blistering criticism by bloggers, resentment by the public at large, scapegoating, and major inconvenience while attempting to park downtown during prime evening and weekend hours. This proviso shall become effective immediately upon Member’s failure to publicly display repentance, which shall include tearing clothes asunder, wailing in regret, donning sackcloth and ashes, and donating one weekend’s free labor as a Sixth Street rickshaw operator.
Does that make more sense?
MARTINEZ – In the past, I’d say Mike is one of the more astute politicians in Austin. Recently, though, he seems to be going out of his way to piss up the leg of just about every single person and constituency in a position to fuck him like a cheap sex toy. This doesn’t at all help. If anything, it makes people like me more sympathetic to people like Jeff Jack. Which causes a self reinforcing loop of anger.
If you want some real fun, go read the comments over at the AAS on the post about the change. They’re massively opposed to this but there are a smattering of people who support this, probably because it doesn’t effect them or they’re just stupid. Like this person who felt compelled to prove the old adage about opening one’s mouth. Twice.
March 3, 2011 12:31 PM | Link to this
I’m amazed at the number of whiners on this post. Instead of keeping Austin weird, you’re making Austin GRIM! We are in a budget CRISIS, people. Revenue needs to come from somewhere. So get over the pay-for-parking issue already. And for those who threaten to move, DO IT NOW! Austin will be a better place without you.
March 3, 2011 11:55 AM | Link to this
Paying for parking downtown is a great idea. It makes money for the city, decreases traffic, saves fuel, reduces pollution, and encourages people to use public transportation to go downtown. With gas prices pushing $3.50/gallon and expected to continue rising, people need to stop whining about paying for parking and, instead, just take the bus downtown.
The City is in a budget crisis? Really? Do tell us more, HooHah, and make sure to detail to what use this money will be put. I’d really like to know how you think the ‘budget crisis’ will be alleviated with fewer taxpayers paying for the same services. Also, buses are pretty impractical for people who actually like to drink late and Cap Metro doesn’t usually run that late. If you can get them to put that service together, I’ll be thrilled to buy a pass. Until then, shut up when you don’t know what you’re talking about.
What’s lost in all this is that LAURA MORRISON voted against this. The one person on Council who apparently doesn’t have a tin ear. She’s being opposed by Toby from 101X who is, of course, taking credit for her vote. According to Toby, he’s responsible for Laura’s change of heart which is surprising since she’s had the same opinion on this since 2009, according to Bobby Levinski, Morrison’s Policy Adviser.
Laura has been against parking meter extended hours since 2009 when it was first suggested. She effectively sees it as a regressive tax on people who work, play and volunteer downtown.
Toby also took credit for the Baby Jesus and Ice Cream.
As a side note, Toby also supports deregulating the Austin energy market which is a super idea when you consider that electricity deregulation has been such a complete, miserable failure all over the rest of the goddamn state . I guess he figures it’s only fair to use you and I as guinea pigs for industry to try again to ‘get it right’. It’s also worth noting that residents of Austin pay one of the cheapest rates for electricity in the state.
Yeah, Toby has some great ideas that should really be tested first in Dallas or some other shithole. You know, if he were to be elected, I see Austin rapidly turning into Dallas. Or Houston. Especially when you put him on a Council with people who are all about doing things that the vast majority of their constituents hate.
Wouldn’t that be nice?