The Appeal Of “Progressive Libertarianism”

Edward Glaeser notes that “almost 59 percent of air travel is done by those in households earning more than $100,000 a year” and that “these wealthier Americans fly 10 times more than people in households earning about $50,000 annually.” He therefore sees no reason for taxpayer revenue to fund air-travel:

Sometimes we can make society fairer if the public sector spends less, a policy of progressive libertarianism. Making the FAA and TSA independent entities responsible for funding themselves by charging air passengers would reduce the overall deficit and economic inequality simultaneously. Moreover, as last week’s delays suggest, a shift to independent funding could help the passengers themselves, even if they pay higher costs. User fees could be used to reduce congestion in airport lines and to improve the overall flying experience.