Webinar on Conservatives and Public Transit set for December 7th

Reconnecting America and the Free Congress Foundation have co-published a collection of essays by the late Paul Weyrich and William S. Lind on public transit called Moving Minds: Conservatives and Public Transit. To promote the themes, Transportation for America is hosting a webinar on December 7th at 3:00 pm that will include me as a constructive critic of public transit.

From the press release:

“Moving Minds: Conservatives and Public Transportation”

Date: Monday, December 7, 2009

Time: 3:00PM

Duration: 1 hour and 30 minutes

Moving Minds: Conservatives and Public Transportation is the subject of Transportation for America’s next webinar on Monday, December 7, 2009. The book is a collection of writings by pro-public transit conservatives Paul Weyrich and William S. Lind and was published jointly by the Free Congress Foundation and Reconnecting America.

Weyrich and Lind embrace public transit as a catalyst for economic revitalization, mobility and lower dependence on foreign oil. They also reject the charge that subsidies distort demand for public transit, pointing out that roads and highways also receive substantial federal funding.

Sam Staley, a critic of mass transit who serves as director of urban and land use policy at the libertarian Reason Foundation, will provide an alternative perspective to Lind, who now directs the Free Congress Foundation’s Center for Public Transportation.

Other participants include John Robert Smith, president and CEO of Reconnecting America and former mayor of Meridian, Mississippi; and Bill Millar, president of the American Public Transportation Association (APTA). Ilana Preuss, outreach director at Transportation for America, will serve as moderator.

You can sign-up to participate in the webinar by clicking on this link,

Reason Foundation is known as a critic of public transit, but our arguments have relied largely on cost-effectiveness and efficiency grounds, not ideological ones. We have published innovative research on public transit, particularly rubber-tire options (e.g., bus rapid transit, or BRT) as an alternative to rail and using HOT Lanes as “virtual exclusive busways” to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of BRT. Notably, we have also highlighted continously the importance of using competitive and managed competition to improve efficiencies in transit operations, most recently spotlighting the successes of Cal Marsella at the Denver Regional Transportation District.

The webinar should be both provocative and interesting, so sign up!