Readers write 8/12

Policy promoted sprawl for too many years

I think Kyle Wingfield is on the right track (“‘Metro,’ more than ‘Atlanta’,” Opinion, Aug. 5).

The real problem as I see it is that our transportation policy for, lo, these many years has been to promote sprawl, and now we have to figure out how to correct that.

Wingfield laments that the city of Atlanta has shrunk in population — when he should be lamenting transportation policy which encouraged this.

We have spent a boatload of money on transportation. Unfortunately, we spent it doing and redoing things like Spaghetti Junction and Ga. 316, and trying to get them right.

I think that if anyone deserves the blame for this, it is Georgia’s Legislature. When it allowed MARTA to be limited to a few counties, it forced the remaining counties to depend on roads and promoted sprawl.

Considering the amount of traffic between here and Lake Lanier and between here and Athens, why weren’t Clarke, Forsyth and Hall counties included in the Atlanta region?

Just think: If the original MARTA had covered the current multicounty region to begin with, what kind of transportation system could we have now, and how much less sprawl?

ROBERT W. PEPPEL, TUCKER

Sales taxes hurt those who have low incomes

Everyone knows metro Atlanta has transportation problems that must be addressed. Perhaps T-SPLOST was defeated because it was a sales tax.

Sales taxes are regressive. That is, they inevitably have a proportionately greater impact on people with low incomes.

Perhaps we need funding from a source that does not hit hardest those who can least afford to pay.

DENISE NOE, ATLANTA

Accountability in spending is needed

Voting down T-SPLOST was the best thing that could have happened.

The voters are finally getting smarter and are not buying the rhetoric that politicians dish out when they want more money.

I’ve been a voter in Georgia for many, many years. I admit (in my younger years of voting) that I was duped by politicians’ claims that raising taxes or voting for a new one was for the good of the people.

Now their cry is, “It will create jobs.” Everyone who believes that, stand up and say, “I love taxation.”

Where are all of the improvements for schools and education, for new roads etc., that you voted for in the past? Had we voted for the sales tax, the money would never have gone to improving roads or bridges, or creating jobs.

We need to vote for spending accountability, to demand to know where the money is spent, and to stop blindly voting based on politicians’ promises.

JIMMY CARTER, SNELLVILLE

GOP has adopted a brilliant strategy

If the Republican party wins the White House, it will be because of a brilliant strategy.

To wit: State your opposition and your desire to make President Barack Obama a one-term president, and then become the party of no cooperation at all for more than three years — then blame everything that hasn’t worked on Obama.

Folks, that is a brilliant strategy.

PHIL DAVIS, POWDER SPRINGS

London games

Thank you for the splendid and thorough 2012 Summer Olympics coverage published recently in the AJC. I also appreciate the newspaper’s excellent coverage of the T-SPLOST issue.

DON RUSHING, ATLANTA