Looks to me like a system ripe for hacking and fraud that will turn ordinary citizens into criminals.
The New York Times reports that the Netherlands is testing a new car use tax system that will tax drivers based upon how much they drive rather than just taxing the vehicle itself like we get now with license plate fees.
The test setup is an electronics package outfitted with GPS, wireless internet, and a rating system algorithm that tracks the following things:
- The car’s environmental impact
- The distances driven,
- The route,
- The time it is driven
Supposedly, calculating all this together for a tax is a “fairer” way to assess the impact of the vehicle. Of course the whole idea is to discourage people from driving.
According to the article, the proposal will be introduced slowly as a replacement for the current car and gas tax, however it is most certainly controversial and will be a real test of how far environmentally savvy Dutch citizens will be willing to go to reduce the impact of the car.
Personally, I think it has FAIL written all over it since people really don’t want their personal vehicles to be like taxicabs with meters tracking everywhere you’ve driven. I wonder how long it will be before some citizen takes a hammer to the meter. The more tech savvy will just figure out a way to hack it or fool it.