Self-funding toll projects as a work of the Enlightenment QUOTABLE QUOTE
"The Industrial Enlightenment developed a new set of criteria by which projects and devices were judged: efficiency and commercial viability. Markets, rather than government officials or aristocratic aesthetes, were to be the ultimate arbiters. In that regard, the British engineers differed from their continental colleagues, where elegance, sophistication, and usefulness to the state often came before usefulness in industry."
(from pages 55-56 of Joel Mokyr's 2009 volume, The Enlightened Economy: An Economic History of Britain 1700-1850 as cited by Donald Boudreaux, economics department George Mason University)
By this definition self-financing toll projects are a product of the Enlightenment, and tax-funded politically driven projects derive from a darker past - editor.