Public transportation is for plebes!

The Post reports today that the majority of Metro board members rarely, if ever, use Metro. Wow, you don't say. We all just died from shock.

I think that, most people, if given a important policy-making position on a major city's public transportation board, would probably make a point of using the system to see how well it gets them around town. Or, at least, take it upon themselves to do a little field research, and ride a train or a bus once in a while to get a feel for things like timeliness of service, how customers are treated, etc. etc.

Ahhh, but... this is Washington. Where "public service" and "civic responsibility" are eschewed, in favor of the philosophy, "How much money can I make without actually doing any real work?" Thus, the Metro board members don't actually ride Metro. Because that would be, you know, so inconvenient.

[D.C. Metro board representative Gladys] Mack said her schedule is too busy to rely on public transportation. "My travel, my destinations and my time frames make it very difficult for me to use the system," said Mack, who lives near the Friendship Heights Metro station and works near Howard University [which also has its own station! -JF]. "I would have to take two trains and two buses. . . . It just makes it very inconvenient for me to depend on the system on a regular basis."
OH, YOU DON'T FUCKING SAY! It's too inconvenient and time-consuming to use Metro for your daily commute. Gee, Gladys, if only someone in a position to do something about that would step up and... oh, wait a minute... you're in a position to do something about that, bitch!

Un-fucking-real. Gladys also refused to share her SmarTrip card data with the Post, because:

"I am just very sensitive with what happens with private information that is collected electronically. It's just kind of a fetish I have. I am just really concerned about my information being shared."
Eww. Well, only in Washington would someone get turned on by freedom of information privacy issues, I guess. (And, furthermore, her SmarTrip card is comped by Metro, and is thus paid for by the public... don't we have a right to see how she's using it?)

Here are some more fun quotes that make me want to kill:

Several board members said their transit use has nothing to do with their job performance. "We're a policy board. I'm not called upon to know whether or not something is working at the Gallery Place Station," said D.C. Council member Jim Graham, who represents the city on the Metro board and drives most places. "I'm appropriately involved with the problems of the system."
That's not really the point, fuckhead! You can't adequately set the policy for Metro if you don't even know what its like to fucking use the system. If Metro is something good for the community that we should all use, why are you driving your car all around town? Doesn't that signal to you a fundamental problem that needs addressing? Or are you just completely fucking retarded?!

Metro Chief Executive Richard A. White recently resumed riding the subway each day after four years of driving to work from Fairfax County in a Metro-issued sport-utility vehicle. He has said that daily riding has opened his eyes to problems and weaknesses that need attention.
Read that again. The CEO of Metro has been driving an SUV to work for the past FOUR FUCKING YEARS. WOW. At least now he's riding every day, and surprise surprise, he says it's beneficial to help him see problems and weaknesses.

I will give props to one of the 12 board members, Charles Deegan, who actually has his head screwed on correctly. He's the newest member, which apparently means he just hasn't been corrupted yet:

"I really enjoy riding the train and the buses, and that's how I learn," said Deegan, who lives in Beltsville and has spent free time exploring the subway lines and buses since joining the Metro board. "The big thing is to experience what the public experiences. That's the way to have any credibility as a board member, I believe."
Oh my God... that all makes sense! When the other board members see that he's actually taking pride in serving the community... oh dear Lord, they'll kill him! Run away, little Charles Deegan! RUNNNNN!

Deegan said the public has a right to know whether he uses the system, especially since the public pays for his SmarTrip card. "It's just the right thing to do," he said.

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