Historically, the financing of public transportation in Europe and the United States vary dramatically. This chapter provides a comparison of auto ownership levels in Eastern and Western Europe and North America, per thousand populations. It demonstrates a leveling off in the growth in auto ownership everywhere except the former Soviet bloc countries. Perhaps the most visible explanation of the relative size and dominance of the public/private sector influence on public policy are the differences in fuel costs and subsidies across these nations. The United States consumption of transportation fuel is 200% to 250% in excess of its major European and Asian competitors. Massive public subsidies to the automobile and highway construction mode have visibly slanted public transportation policy in the United States away from large scale public transit encouragement. On average, annual federal, state and local highway subsidies exceeded $14.2 billion with decade total subsidies in excess of $142 billion.