To the Editors:

The problem is not just a fare (tax) increase of 5%, 5%, 5%, and 1 % and now 6%, for 2012/13/14/15/16, respectively, it is that taxes go up everywhere and make no mistake, fares are a form of tax since the MTA is run as a government agency.

Taxes are the fastest-growing line item on any household budget and are the biggest slice of a household income “pie.” Picture that, a pizza pie for dinner, eight slices typically for a typical family of four. But Family has to give two of them (25%, add ‘em up in your own home) to the tax collector. The remaining six slices go to Family. So, Family takes two slices and cuts them in half so each get a slice and a half while Family's tax collector eats two whole slices. He didn't do a thing to earn the income to buy that pie, nor does he have anything to do with your family. Sure, he'll tell you he paves roads, provides teachers, fire and police protection, and at a federal level defends our country; all good things. And in the case of fares, runs your commuter train.

You start to think he's all right but before he leaves you ask him, “But can't you do the same on less? Just the way my family has learned to do with less?” The glutton looks at you, smiles and says, “No.” Next time he'll ask for more of that pie and there's not a darn thing you can do about. Except cut other expenditures out of your budget so Family can no longer afford to order a pie with toppings.
Chris von Hoffmann
Wilton, Sept. 18