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Cities Are Worried Self-Driving Cars Will Cost Them Revenue

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posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 12:29 AM
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If the car's computer is programmed to follow all traffic laws and cannot exceed or circumvent them in the slightest degree (except perhaps in emergency situations)...

...fewer and fewer traffic laws will be broken. Which means cops will write fewer and fewer tickets. Which means cities will have less and less revenue. Which means they will have to steal more from you some other way (taxation).

They don't care about your safety. They don't care about your "standard of living". All they want is your money.

Arizona Republic


PHOENIX — Self-driving cars and other emerging technologies are going to cut into municipal budgets nationwide, a panel of futurists says.

Imagine this brave new world:

• Autonomous cars that never speed, never run red lights — and owners who never get popped for drunken driving or pay a dime for traffic tickets.

• Robotic vehicles that deliver people and goods anywhere — and choke off income taxes from displaced taxi drivers and delivery-truck drivers.

The financial impact of driverless cars represents just one of many ways emerging technologies will disrupt local governments, according to the authors of a report published by the Brookings Institution, a non-profit public-policy organization based in Washington, D.C.

That's right, folks. They're worried they won't be able to make money off of busting you. Or taxing your local body shop. Our gouging you with legal fees.

Of course, some say the cities' concerns are unwarranted due to the small amount of revenue they actually take in from traffic violations.


Ken Strobeck, executive director of the League of Arizona Cities and Towns, believes the futurists' concerns are misplaced.

"I'm assuming that these statements are coming from people that don't have any idea how city budgets operate, because revenue from traffic tickets and DUIs is not a significant source of revenue," he said.

That's right. We're all just too stupid to understand it. It's beyond us.

Screw you, Ken.


Phoenix collected $9.6 million in fines from most moving violations in fiscal 2014. Fines from DUIs brought in an additional $1.2 million for a combined $10.8 million.

Traffic-ticket revenue represented approximately 1.1% of the city's entire general fund of $1.03 billion in 2014, a percentage that has remained fairly steady since at least 2011.

In Phoenix, a potential loss of $10 million to $12 million a year would be noticeable, Reber said.

"You're talking about millions of dollars, so yeah, that's paying for some police officers' salaries, a few of them, at least. It would be something that we would have to make up in some other way," she said.

Emphasis added. I'll now refer you back to my comment above about stealing the money from us one way or the other.

Thoughts, ATS? Do our cities need criminals (well, offenders) to remain fiscally solvent?

What does that say about our society? The prison-industrial complex (or maybe more accurately in this instance, the "litigation industry"? Et cetera, et cetera...




posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 12:37 AM
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a reply to: NthOther

This is what you end up with in a money first, money last, and money everything in between society.

We can't properly educate our children, take care of the environment, nor feed the poor. Why? Because none of those businesses make money.
edit on 3-7-2015 by Isurrender73 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 01:00 AM
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What's next ? Prison owners saying 'that is not right! we have less and less inmates because of that !", and the medical industry saying "if the level of injuries continues to fall, we will be out of jobs!", and the guys who repair the cars what will they say ?, etc..

I am in awe when I see how this system functions, its biggest enemy is true efficiency and true economy.
edit on 3-7-2015 by gosseyn because: sp



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 01:07 AM
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a reply to: NthOther

I'm having a little difficulty with the jump from self-driving cars = less revenue = "stealing" revenue from elsewhere.

Despite misuse and government corruption/greed, there are plenty of good arguments for the use of fees as incentives for particular behaviors. For example, increasing water rates should = decreased water use. There are reasons why that sometimes works, and sometimes doesn't work. In legitimate cases of instituting fees, such as water, many folks will cry foul that the government is stealing their money when really, if you think about it, there are true costs of providing water and true costs of overuse when water is next to free.

I bring up water because I couldn't think of another example. I don't think it's as simple as money grabbing. We haven't developed better ways for funding many needed public services. Do we have better mechanisms? Often we do not. Do we live in a society that is able to self-govern without incentives, regulation, and public services? We definitely do not.



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 01:16 AM
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originally posted by: gosseyn

What's next ? Prison owners saying 'that is not right! we have less and less inmates because of that !", and the medical industry saying "if the level of injuries continues to fall, we will be out of jobs!", and the guys who repair the cars what will they say ?, etc..

Exactly. There's no end to it. Our society needs death and destruction to keep it economically viable. To keep itself running.

I'd say that makes our whole society a big fat pile of steaming... something.

Death and destruction aside (which are more profitable on larger scales anyway), it just floors me that anyone can think their government cares about them at all when they read stuff like this.

They're admitting our society won't function properly without people breaking their laws. I wonder what the police unions think of all this.

Will they all get their holsters in a bunch when the traffic cop goes the way of the dodo?




posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 01:25 AM
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originally posted by: rationalconsumer

I'm having a little difficulty with the jump from self-driving cars = less revenue = "stealing" revenue from elsewhere.

It's pretty simple.

They'll tax you more. Taxation is stealing, and it takes various forms. It is an immoral social practice that needs to be eliminated in every way.

But that's for another thread.


Do we live in a society that is able to self-govern without incentives, regulation, and public services? We definitely do not.

Exactly. Something is seriously, fundamentally wrong with our society. We shouldn't have to be coerced into doing anything.

Do you think the government should make policy based on how much revenue they can generate from the citizenry disregarding said policy?

That's insane.



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 01:32 AM
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a reply to: NthOther

It all sounds just fine dandy and peach until some radical nut-job hacks into the guidance system mainframe and starts creating mass havoc with his new remote controlled toys.

In case these "techie idealists" haven't noticed, there are some real whack job sociopaths out there.

Terrible idea.


If they're so concerned about the public safety and the lives of civilians, these fruitcakes need to just hire professional drivers.



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 01:37 AM
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a reply to: NthOther

Technology is going to make a lot of industries obsolete very quickly. Oculus Rift could knock out the TV or Theatre industry by making it all virtual and private (does anyone go to a theatre for the people? having your seat kicked, babies crying, people eating for 2 hours, obstructed vision, bright smartphones, sticky floors, handjobs, etc)
edit on 3/7/15 by SpongeBeard because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 01:38 AM
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originally posted by: NthOther

originally posted by: gosseyn

What's next ? Prison owners saying 'that is not right! we have less and less inmates because of that !", and the medical industry saying "if the level of injuries continues to fall, we will be out of jobs!", and the guys who repair the cars what will they say ?, etc..

Exactly. There's no end to it. Our society needs death and destruction to keep it economically viable. To keep itself running.

I'd say that makes our whole society a big fat pile of steaming... something.

Death and destruction aside (which are more profitable on larger scales anyway), it just floors me that anyone can think their government cares about them at all when they read stuff like this.

They're admitting our society won't function properly without people breaking their laws. I wonder what the police unions think of all this.

Will they all get their holsters in a bunch when the traffic cop goes the way of the dodo?



And the biggest tool of destruction is WAR, that is why a war is created at some point, because it creates jobs. The other big problem is planned obsolescence, it creates so much waste but also it creates an insane culture of inefficiency.



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 01:45 AM
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originally posted by: SpongeBeard

Technology is going to make a lot of industries obsolete very quickly.

That's what they keep telling us, but then they just create new industries (or contemporary adaptations) to keep us all just as busy as we were before.

Anyway. I'm not one to celebrate new technology (or any technology, for that matter), but looking on the bright side, if this will take some of these maniacal cops off of our streets, I'm all for it.

We live in a society where I'd rather take the cops off the streets than the criminals--the cops are more dangerous.

So yeah, let's get automated cars. I never thought I'd say that.



ETA: Oh yeah, I forgot. They won't hire less cops or fire any they've already got. They'll just raise taxes. Or come up with an "autonomous transit fee" (still a tax).

So nevermind. Screw the cars.
edit on 7/3/15 by NthOther because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 01:46 AM
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a reply to: NthOther
They will go after the lowest hanging fruit next. People riding on bikes, skateboards, on foot. The culture of penalty is BIG business right now.
This is why we so many private prisons. Take a trip out to Florence, AZ. There is a literally a city east of the town that is made up of prison buildings.

Just ask Sherrif Joe. His wife had a stake in the prison phone system and was making money.



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 01:57 AM
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Great thread and look forward to comment more later; S&F for a nice non-politically charged threat about something relevant to all of society at large!



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 01:58 AM
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The authorities are not stealing money from you. You are choosing to give them money. Speeding, running a red light, and driving drunk are all voluntary actions. No-one need pay a penny for these things.

And that sentence in the article about "robotic vehicles ... chok[ing] off income taxes from displaced taxi drivers and delivery-truck drivers". Well boo, hoo. No doubt the author's great-grandfather was crying into his oatmeal when Henry Ford popularised the horse-less carriage. I mean, no more income tax from blacksmiths and saddle-makers, eh? It must have been the end of the world as they knew it.



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 02:05 AM
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a reply to: gosseyn

Did you seriously use the prison industry as an example? The laws bought buy lobbyists will always ensure a full prison. Bad example.



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 02:06 AM
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originally posted by: lacrimoniousfinale

And that sentence in the article about "robotic vehicles ... chok[ing] off income taxes from displaced taxi drivers and delivery-truck drivers". Well boo, hoo. No doubt the author's great-grandfather was crying into his oatmeal when Henry Ford popularised the horse-less carriage. I mean, no more income tax from blacksmiths and saddle-makers, eh? It must have been the end of the world as they knew it.

You're missing the point.

We're not talking about Model A's competing with Arabian mares.

Your government needs you to break it's laws so it can make money off of you. It won't say that explicitly, of course, but...

...read the article.

This isn't (necessarily) about the age-old debate of technology displacing the labor force. We're talking about a government (not the Ford Motor Company [although, these days there's little difference]) that is financially dependent on criminal behavior.

And how that doesn't make any sense, unless you're willing to admit that we live in a completely sick and twisted society.



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 02:12 AM
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This is why the public won't be able to buy self-driving cars for a long, long time.

Self-driving vehicles will be public transit and city-owned vehicles ONLY.

There is simply to much money to loose, to much of an industry in place. DUI's alone make a city/state a TON of money. It gets spread all over too ... jails, courts, and even private lawyers.

There are far to many people that stand to LOOSE something, so this will never be technology for the consumer. Your city bus or taxi might be automated, but your personal vehicle never will be. Not for a very, very long time.



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 02:13 AM
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originally posted by: Vector99
a reply to: gosseyn

Did you seriously use the prison industry as an example? The laws bought buy lobbyists will always ensure a full prison. Bad example.

Yes, you're right, they could criminalise farting in public or walking on two legs.



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 02:22 AM
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a reply to: gosseyn

would you be surprised if they did? How long would your outrage last until it subsided?



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 02:38 AM
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I recently read somewhere that the number of private vs. government-run prisons was really pretty low -- it's not nearly as high as we think.

Well, if you just look at the numbers according to Globalresearch.ca:



There are approximately 2 million inmates in state, federal and private prisons throughout the country.


Okay, so all in all we have 2 million inmates. How many of them are in private prisons though?



About 18 corporations guard 10,000 prisoners in 27 states.


Okay, but this is growing out of control, right? I mean ... this is kind of a new thing, right? Nope:



The prison privatization boom began in the 1980s, under the governments of Ronald Reagan and Bush Sr., but reached its height in 1990 under William Clinton, when Wall Street stocks were selling like hotcakes.


So, you're telling me that in over 30 years we still only have 10,000 inmates in private custody? Out of 2 million? That certainly doesn't seem like an exponentially growing industry to me.

The funny thing is, the article is an alarmist one -- scaring people over the private prison industry. But if you look at the numbers with a rational, logical perspective you see that the issue really has been blown completely out of proportion. It's really not this "huge conspiracy" -- it's a great scapegoat for conspiracies though.

Just some perspective for all of us here.



posted on Jul, 3 2015 @ 03:06 AM
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originally posted by: NthOther
Which means they will have to steal more from you some other way ...


Lol..




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