Knowing one’s audience may be one of the most important lessons taught in school. To have watched the second installment of the five-part San Diego Green New Deal speaker series, you would need to venture deep into low-income El Cajon. A place where Hasan Ikhrata is not the most ridiculous person in the room, but admittedly, the bar was low.
Hasan knew his audience that day, as most of the audience was his staff and other prominent politicos on the left pushing enthusiastically for his agenda. This included Climate Action Campaign Director of Programs Sophie Wolfram, Port Commissioner Rafael Castellanos, Kelly Heinz, a representative for County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher, and a representative for San Diego City Councilman Chris Ward. Had Hasan’s audience not been people whom he provides paychecks, then the response would’ve been outrage rather than applause.
His ideas include appropriating $600 million or more of your tax dollars to cement the start of his project. While Hasan is open about SANDAG having nowhere near the funds necessary to accomplish such a massive project, he hopes to generate revenue by artificially creating more traffic and then charging people who drive alone. Not to mention his vision for the future where everyone starts their day by opening a government-run app to plan out there transit. If this is an Orwellian induced nightmare, then please wake me up.
The above graphic displays Hasan’s “ideal” future: a large rail running up the center of the freeway to provide walking space. Despite the tragic failure of his tunnel train projects in Los Angeles, Hasan assured us that it would be easier to build tunnels here in San Diego. His plan includes a lane just for self-driving vehicles, and boy do we need that right now. The revolutionary plan also has an HOV lane and a bike lane included for the highway.
If you look closely, you can spot what’s missing—lanes for everybody else. Hasan’s plan reduces the number of lanes, because if he doesn’t create more traffic, how will his toll collect enough money to pay for his applause?
Hasan’s grand idea is to do exactly what he admitted didn’t work in Los Angeles. He explained, “I did something stupid in LA, converted a vehicle lane into a bike lane” and admitted it’s “going to be difficult and expensive.”
At this point, you may be wondering why would anyone want this costly, overplanned “solution” to transit. “If you want this, [we] need to make it safe, take back public space, I didn’t feel safe on [a] scooter,” Hasan explained.
Maybe all of this exorbitant planning and cost is necessary so that Hasan can feel safe on his scooter. If our local Soviet Planner doesn’t feel safe, then there must be a problem.