Wednesday, March 26, 2014


At the Increased Fare "Hearing" (they don't listen, so I don't know why they call it that) I learned about the group that is true enemy of the public transit rider.

The East West Gateway Council of Governments.

Go have a look at this page:

That's the Board of Directors.  24 people, most of whom are white men that have never ridden a bus in their life, unless it was some marketing and publicity stunt.  (There are only 6 African-Americans, and only one woman on the whole board.)

Until yesterday, I thought Bi-State and Metro were all about public transportation.  I thought it was a little strange that Metro also owns St. Louis Downtown airport in Cahokia, and the Arch Riverboats and Trams.

Turns out that back in 1950, one of the first things Bi-State did was form the Metropolitan Sewer District.  Why? Because Metro's true function is to "develop" the region to create more openings for business development (no, that does not necessarily mean more jobs, better wages, and a better quality of life).  Metro is just a funnel for government funds.

I haven't had a chance to read through the whole website yet, but there are some really obvious conclusions to be made, simply by looking at who is in charge.

It is difficult to look at the picture of say, Chairman Steve Ehlman, a St. Charles businessman, and wonder if he isn't the reason there is no train to St. Charles and surrounding counties. (See this post on the "heroes" of St. Charles.)

That might seem kind of racist, huh? Judging him because he is an upper-middle class, suburban, white, businessman?   Kind of like judging a black man because he has saggy trousers and grills?

Except a guy like the Chairman is basically wearing his gang colors.  This is Gang "Ole-Boy Network".  And you, public transit rider, are NOT invited to the country club, unless you are bussing the tables and mopping the floors.

See, if you have a permanent population that lives at poverty level, doesn't have access to decent jobs, healthcare, housing, and who rely on crappy public transportation, employers have a nice pool of people that will work for any wage, in any conditions.

"Don't send your jobs to China! We got a bunch of people that work for next to nothing!  And don't worry that they will be hanging out in your neighborhood after work, they have a two hour bus ride to work each way.  We'll keep the trains out of your neighborhood and out of their neighborhood."  (See image, below)

Incarceration by lack of decent public transit.

You don't even have to put up barbed wire fences.

Keep checking back.  I am going to be looking into these people more closely in the future.  And how they operate.

East-West Gateway Council of Governments
One Memorial Dr., Ste 1600
St. Louis, MO  63102
phone:  (314) 421-4220 or (618) 274-2750
    fax: (314) 231-6120

No comments:

Post a Comment