Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Tail Fattening in Practice

Some fun stuff:

A recent Strong Towns post tells us that (1) sales taxes are increasingly being used as DOT slush funds (due to excessive restrictions on local tax collection),
while (2) this table suggests there is a mighty overhang in retail in this country (made worse by the fact that such counts routinely undercount antifragile retail),

thereby (3) heading into the teeth of a likely large-scale retail downsizing,

which would (4) extirpate sales tax revenues in most locations--shrinking the size footprint of the transportation slush fund.

This is consistent with "tail fattening" (think Nassim Taleb)--especially the kind that, to reduce or mitigate risk now, kicks it down the road, compounding it when the interest's due.
The only real long-term solution is--as  I have said before and I will say again--conversion to a user fees-based system for access-managed roads, and massive reductions in maintained infrastructure for all general-access byways.

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