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How's Charlie on the MBTA? Not so good, poll finds
By adamg on Thu, 06/27/2019 - 9:39am
WBUR reports a poll of Boston-area T riders finds most don't think much of Charlie Baker's attempts to fix the transit system since the 2015 collapse in the snow.
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So next WBUR will tell us Baked Alaska can be made locally or that MARS bars are made right here on Earth. Right?
Not so obvious
Based on the WBUR survey, way too many people still think he's blameless.
The first thing he did was reorganize the management of the T with the stated goal of cutting costs which he promised would be followed by investment of the savings toward improving the system.
Much like his predecessors, was successful on Part I and promptly abandoned Part II.
I'd like to see the next Governor promise to increase spending first and then worry about cost cutting once things have improved. The "cut costs first" method sure isn't working.
The last thing
The last thing the T needs is more money. They have squandered billions and the service just keeps getting worse. Trusting them with more money is not the way to go.
Didn't they just ask for an additional 50 million? Clearly they don't have all the money they need.
So what, more cost cutting?
So what, more cost cutting? That’s gonna right the ship?
We’ve done it your way for the last 5 years and it’s getting worse.
Replace Pollack with Gonneville. Admit Mistakes. Press Reset
That's the only way I see Baker making a recovery. The consistent pounding by Boston media is getting results. Step by step
Charlie Baker and the T
The business of throwing good money after bad,
The business of throwing good money after bad, ostensibly in order to fix the problems with the MBTA, is clearly not the way to go. Decades of sheer neglect and lack of proper maintenance on the MBTA have finally come home to roost, and we're now seeing the net results. It's pathetic and disgusting.
Connecticut's DOT is laying bare the Baker Admin's Incompetence
It turns out Connecticut's DOT did everything by the book in the Zhukovskyy trucker case. MassDOT tried to smear ConnDOT and it backfired. ConnDOT has the files and every Boston reporter should have a direct line with Connecticut. CT is becoming Sweden during Chernobyl.
Boston 2024 would have been good for the MBTA
The T is not improving under our current broken system of governance. Increased fares, increased gas taxes, increased income taxes, reduced T pensions and benefits - none of these things can be drastically altered. You would have to run politicians and appoint bureaucrats promising to do the opposite of those things and then have them in concert abandon their promises to the voters and implement their MBTA-friendly agenda. Even then, it probably wouldn’t happen.
The best these daily T riders (haha, “daily T riders”) can hope for is some large infrastructure project which will throw a little cash their way. At least Boston 2024 might have done that. It may not have amounted to much but if you are that guy who posted in the thread a few days ago who has been riding the T for 40 years (haha, good grief), Boston 2024 probably would have been the single best incremental improvement to the T you would have seen in a long distinguished career riding back and forth each day aboard the T to do paper work in an office. If you’re this guy, you probably care less about coupons on government debt or unused, crumbling velodromes.
With the condition that that MBTA is presently in (total messed up due to years of neglect and lack of proper maintenance), having the Olympics here in Boston for 2024 would put even more strain an on already strained MBTA system and make an already dreadful situation way worse.
This is one of the worst uhub
This is one of the worst uhub comments in awhile. First, drivers aren't paying more in gas tax. They are paying less and making non drivers cover their greedy asses.
And how does blowing billions on Olympic stadiums improve the T? The olympics are nothing but a scam to funnel taxpayer money to the 1%. The lower and middle class end up worse off. One minute of research would have told you this.
Looks like you've joined the ranks with the likes of me as one of the "bad posters" (haha, oh, golly).
Capitalize “Bad Posters” next time
Kinopio is a Liberal Politics Poster, so he will disagree with anything counter revolutionary to him. That’s not a good posting benchmark.
My lists of Good and Bad Posters, on the other hand, contain posters of various political affiliations and world views. Adam and I are liberals but we do not discriminate based on viewpoint.
A Bad Poster is boring, lacks cognition, has a poor sense of humor, and posts things that are no one cares to read. I did put you in that category, boo_urns, but honestly, you have shown me something since then so I am starting to regret that classification. I’ll try to pay attention and look out for some Good Posts from you.
I counter that
the reason the T is not improving is because no one gives a damn in our state's leadership. What has been truly tried, Kapil, to raise revenue to fix the problem? Why does not anyone take Charlie (We just need better T management and all will be well) to task for transferring the Big Dig Debt to the T's books way back when he worked for the Weld administration. https://www.wbur.org/news/2015/02/20/payne-baker-snow-mbta which did not help the current problems?
Perhaps we need a large infrastructure project like, oh, I don't know, GE, huh? At least they gave back their tax cuts to the city to the tune of about $87 million.
In regards to your love affair with Boston 2024, you just might want to revisit the reasons why the city gained its senses and said thanks, but no thanks. Prof. Wiki can help, just peruse the section entitled "funding."
Look, the only fix is a serious fix and that has to come from the state's leadership getting serious. And, that, unfortunately has yet to happen.
Transferring the debt did help. Check out the income statement and it's pretty obvious. They got lots more income initially and when that didn't grow as expected they threw hundreds of millions more at the T.
The big problem is funding. This will take billions and we are already one of the most indebted states per capita. If the economy tanks or interest rates rise we are extremely exposed. This will require new revenue streams, and there are few to be had. And even there, just a year or two ago the T said they didn't have the heads to manage more projects.
Just tax the rich? Go ask CT and NJ what happens when you try that.
We've tried nothing and we're all out of ideas!
Color me shocked that people feel entitled to the subsidies that make driving cheaper.
And don't forget, those fees currently don't even meet half of road funding.
Electric monorail above existing roadways
Bring back the El!
Honestly though, the T is unfixable without massive amounts of money, planning, foresight, and cooperation between hundreds of agencies. Not to mention paralyzing the city traffic for years.
And thanks to the Big Dig corruption you can plan on the Federal Govt handing Boston another check for a ginormous infrastructure project by the second week of never.
Charlie Baker's attempted to fix the MBTA?
Uh, how? And when?
I liken his $50mm in additional funds to Lucille Bluth asking...
"I mean, it's one banana, Michael. How much could it cost? Ten dollars?"
Do you think he
Easily gets re-elected in 2022 or runs for POTUS? Highest approved MA politician and highest approved US Gov.
someday, before I'm dead
I want one of these polls to ask for one specific thing that he has done that makes him so popular. One question to ask what the actual tangible difference has been between him and a friendly Golden Retriever.
Easily elected and but runs for Senate
He can't get elected by this GOP political environment - it's gone to far to the right and good governance* isn't a winning message any more for Fish and his kind. They only want dead toddlers in the river now and mass shootings. I bet Fish had to call his doctor four hours after he saw that photo yesterday.
* This isn't to say I think Baker is providing good governance but that's certainly what he would run on given the overall success of the state during his term(s).
We need to think completely
We need to think completely differently about the T and its governance structure. We have a problem where many legislators represent communities without T access and their voters don't care, hence the legislators don't care. And we get stuck in this perpetual cycle of underfunding and unaccountability. I'd like to see the T governance structure completely reorganized into something like the MWRA. Let it be run by and accountable to the communities it serves. Do something different, whatever the exact details look like. The governor doesn't care and his voters clearly don't care enough to hold him accountable. Let the communities who rely on the T run it and let Charlie keep being a tall guy who doesn't offend anyone.
Right and wrong
Right - I like the idea of MWRA stakeholder lead management.
Wrong- a quick read through this comment thread would seem to counter your theory about Charlie Baker not offending people.
For Baker, 80 percent of success is showing up
With too few Republicans in the legislature to sustain a veto, Baker is merely a figurehead happy to just show up and play along with the House Speaker and Senate President who are running the show. Likewise, the Speaker and President are happy to have Baker to push out front to
terminateencourage the resignation of any department head whose agency errs enough to attract what's left of the State House media. Baker and Polito are quite content with their main role of filling hundreds of plum positions appointed by the Executive Branch. Baker has no chance at the presidency due to his left-wing politics and his showy lack of support for President Trump. The base is tired of Baker. Sad that the Dems can't nominate a credible moderate who would walk away with most of Trump's one million+ MA votes.
Meanwhile, if the Legislature wanted to fix the T (or anything else), they could change the entire place today by passing new laws and appropriations that Baker can't block. Then again, why rock the boat when it's smooth sailing?
Of the consequences of re-electing Baker
this was one of the easiest to foresee. I'm grateful for the social safety net in this state, and I'm grateful to have access to public transit at all, but austerity in regard to the T is bad for essentially everyone.
Know what this town needs?
Why settle for that?
Two rails! Or maybe even three!!
what about us brain-dead slobs
If we elect officials who dont ride/care about the public transit (and believe the promises) then we end up here.
The T is 10 billion in the hole just to bring it up to speed.
Whatever happened in the past is in the past. The fact now is that if Boston wants a public transit system that transits the public, someone in leadership (looking at you Charlie) has to put step aside from his kinder, gentler Republican do nothing of substance but I can talk real soft persona and do some serious revenue raising.
He has to go here:
"Voters do clearly support one measure — 69% to 28%: a tax on income over $1 million. Previous polls have also shown strong support for the so-called "millionaire's tax." (The state's Supreme Judicial Court struck down an effort to put the measure on the ballot back in 2018. Lawmakers are currently considering the measure again.)
"I believe that people should be taxed more if they have more income, not less, and it makes sense to me that a portion of that would go towards public transportation," said poll respondent Aren Stone of Cambridge."
Or, just scrap the entire system and have everyone (80+ thousand folks per day, 2014 figures) drive in. Maybe then you would see some real moving and shaking from the State's leadership.