Many liberty losing policies originate in California. The Texas Department of Transportation (state highway system.) California-ised state roads this week by restricting use of highway lanes by barring 92 – 97% of drivers from restricted lanes labeled as HOV-BUS lanes, on I-10 and US 281N in San Antonio.

This is a monumental change for San Antonio, the home of the cradle of Texas liberty, for I-10 and US 281N are the first highways to be California-ised.

If that is not bad enough. These HOV-BUS lanes will be restricted under the control of VIA, the bus company, not TXDOT.

[side_text]Don Dixon, of San Antonio, TX, submitted this commentary for and Texas Scorecard.[/side_text]

VIA’s stated goal is to use I-10 and US 281N as a starter and expand an entire system of HOV-BUS lanes on State Highways. VIA will control who will be restricted, who can use, and how many people per car for HOV-BUS lane use, The HOV-BUS consultant said in order to force people out of cars and onto a bus or carpool, congestion is needed on free lanes and the bus bureaucracy has policing and monetary fine powers and a court system to collect the fine. Even more troubling, most all of the 120,000cars per day both directions on this 2.7 miles of I-10 section will be restricted from 2 of the main interstate lane capacity, which will cause congestion on the unrestricted lanes while the restricted lanes have unused capacity. Your tax money built those lanes. TXDOT just converted a HOV lane in Dallas to a toll lane to “sell” unused capacity. Efficiency and pollution studies by professional civil engineers proves that all unrestricted lanes have less congestion and less pollution.

So everyone loses except liberal planners and the bus bureaucracy. They get control of the restricted lanes, build and grow their bureaucracy and power and they try to social engineer by pushing drivers out of cars into a bus. They do not recognize the freedom and efficiency that the auto offers and want people and their cars off interstate freeways and state highways and want those people to catch a bus to make their trips instead. Now the Great State of Texas has joined the liberals and Californians in their war against the personal car and truck, which is very un-Texan. Texans just like their freedom. The day that TXDOT passed this anti-liberty action, it was not a good day for San Antonio or the state of Texas.

Power politics wins, common sense and liberty loses to the California-isation of Texas. The taxpayers dislike the special interest politics that short changes their maximum benefit to be able to use all of the lanes. The public expectation is that public money is used to build roads without big government restrictions.

Scrap the HOV-BUS lanes and make all new lanes open to all cars as general purpose lanes.