Of course, we have accidents on our roads and highways all the time, but lawmakers like Mr. Baddour never suggest ending our massive annual investments in road and highway expansion. The truth is, expanding our public transportation system and reducing reliance on cars is the only way we can reduce global warming, reduce our dependence on foreign oil (and stop sending our money to the Saudi monarchy, and from them to Osama), and create walkable, liveable communities. The resulting cleaner air will mean longer life spans, fewer heart attacks, fewer asthma attacks, and fewer missed worked days. Even drivers benefit, as better public transportation reduces traffic.
It is true that the MBTA is saddled with a larger debt than other transit agencies. Unrealistically large pension and benefits are a small but egregious part of the problem, and should be reduced. But the main culprits, ironically, are Beacon Hill leaders like Baddour himself, who put the Big Dig’s transit commitment costs on the T in a fiscal shell game to avoid responsibility, and who force the transportation agencies to waste money year after year using expensive police details instead of flagmen.
Personally, I do not think that the T’s debt contributed significantlyto the crash. But if Baddour believes that the T’s debt contributed to this terrible accident, he needs to get himself to confession, and quick, since he is as responsible for the T’s debt as any person in Massachusetts.
Senate President Murray should react swiftly to Senator Baddour’s callow politicization of a young woman’s tragic death. The Transportation Committee is important. To chair it, Senator Murray should install someone with more vision — and more decency.
Senator Baddour, you can read the definition of pwn here.