Skip to comments.High-speed rail absurdities just keep rolling along
Posted on 04/03/2012 3:41:28 PM PDT by landsbaum
There is so much wrong with the California High-Speed Rail project, its getting difficult to stay up to date as new absurdities are revealed almost daily. . . . But Katy Grimes raises an aspect pretty much overlooked, although we and others have mentioned aspects of this aspect previously. . .
(Excerpt) Read more at orangepunch.ocregister.com ...
The high speed trains are required so we can be corralled into the cities and become totally dependent on government for everything.
Brown has a new scheme how to fund this rail: cap-and-trade, in other words, this pile of dicktator, with the help of that sickening specimen -—Arnold the RINO-of-a- Kennedy’s muscle bonk Austrian-—has been capable of snookering big-business into this scam, and now they are going to reap what they helped sow. If the idiots who voted for this clown think the unemployment rate is too high now, wait until employers see it more important for self-preservation than helping out the state in continual disrepair.
To go GALT and move jobs overseas and lay off, has been occuring continually for sometime now and there should be no allusions. Producers will be funding a union run rail line-—for a minute-—and there is no way around it, Brown will steal anything not nailed down, and as usual, but not unlike any good communist, he will circumvent the California legislature to promote the union, OWSer, progressive agenda.
I wish California had chose to become it’s own country long ago; too many electoral votes. To even imagine that these fools running Ca. cannot even begin to have the capacity to understand that 250K does not a millionaire make-—must be the new math that makes it so difficult for today’s students to fathom real figures-—is beyond me.
A Willie Green Memorial Choo-choo Ping.
don’t forget the 5 billions from Obama for Desert Xpress which has no track record at all. The route makes no sense, it’ll never make a profit and the “loans” will never be repaid.
So, it is just like all of Obummer’s other “investments.”
Except they pretend that Desert Xpress is a “private company”... right sure. Owned, likely, by the unions, politicians, city of las vegas and Harry Ried and Casino owners I bet.
But its not like the MSM is at all interested in finding out who or what owns a company slated to get a $5 billion loan from the Obama government.
“A train, unless it has frequent stops, is of NO ECONOMIC USE TO ANYONE except those at either end.”
That’s profoundly narrow minded. In the case of the LA-Las Vegas HSR if you live in Barstow the economic impact of the train is found in reduced traffic and reduced costs associated with emergency services required for all of that traffic. Of course, there’s also a negative impact if HSR is successful and then businesses that depend on traffic jams and collisions and etc. along that corridor see their incomes impacted by the reduction in carnage along the LA-LV corridor.
Also, anything that ships by rail to a distribution point results in lower costs when it is eventually trucked to its final destination. You inevitably have things in your home that were shipped to you by intermodal shipping.
One of the reasons trains went out of service as a way of moving people is they just can't compete with automobiles and planes.
Trains did fine up against planes and cars until government subsidized roads and airports came along.
I’d be right with you on denounicing public funds for HSR if public funds were eliminated for roads and airports and then billions in bail-outs for the airlines.
It’s not like private firms are not willing to build HSR (as in Texas). But when Southwest Airlines pours millions into lawsuits to stop a competititve HSR plan (again, see Texas) then the only way to get the thing built is with the power of government.
So like I’m saying, if you want to level the playing field you’ll find that private investors are willing to build HSR because the numbers for it make sense. But if you’re going to get all upset about public funds going to HSR while being silent about highways and airlines/airports that would go bankrupt if required to run on their own then I guess you see where I stand.
We have a couple of subsidized roads here in Fairfax County. Used to be called Rolling Road #1 and Rolling Road #2
Those roads were in business BEFORE the French and Indian War.
Now, regarding taxes that pay for roads and airports (and air traffic control), they exist. You pay gasoline taxes ~ and in the USA they go to roads (in Europe they give all that money to Iranian doctors and Bengladeshy nurses and they end up with inadequate medicine and worse highways).
Runways are paid for out of the fees charged air passengers, and a part of those fees go for TSA.
I think you are trying to confound USER FEES with TAXES.
Concerning railroad subsidies, we subsidize the Metro Rail system in the Washington DC area out of PROPERTY TAXES!
Article I Section 8 Clause 7:
To establish Post Offices and Post Roads;
If the train doesn’t stop there then you also have the reduced revenue of people stopping for gas or food. So very minor reduced costs (most of which is actually federal highway money anyway) and reduced area revenues as the train flies by. Except of course people won’t actually be riding the train because it will be too expensive and on an inconvenient schedule. So basically you get what you have now and a train that flies by empty a few times a day.
Railroads are also a form of "road" ~ neatly divided into "bed", "rails", "rolling stock".
I guess so. Trains weren’t invented until the early 1800’s, although I did read that horse-drawn wagons on rails existed a lot earlier.
“Let me point out that federal funding of roads is in the Constitution, but trains are not.”
Neither are airports yet that hasn’t stopped Jack Murtha from building a monument to himself at taxpayer expense.
“If the train doesnt stop there then you also have the reduced revenue of people stopping for gas or food. So very minor reduced costs (most of which is actually federal highway money anyway) and reduced area revenues as the train flies by.”
That’s a bad argument to use because someone like myself will turn it against you and ask if you oppose Interstate Highways that pass by the downtowns and etc. and that have beggared small businesses that were not wise enough to relocate near to offramps.
I’m not opposing HSR because it will pass towns. I’m opposing HSR because it’s incredibly expensive and nobody is going to ride the damn thing. I was simply pointing out that your Barstow argument lacked real world contact. Towns that get passed DO lose money, that’s a simple reality. Whether or not that’s a reason for or against a particular mode of transit all depends on if you care about that town. With or without money going to Barstow though HSR is still a pointless boondoggle costing dramatically more per track mile AND traveler mile than anything else.
The funny thing here is that you’re using conflicting arguments to push your point of view:
1. Towns that are passed by will lose revenue from all the cars that used to pass through their town.
2. HSR is a ‘boondoggle’ because ‘no one will use it’.
I’m sorry but pick one or the other. It cannot be both.
Also, I’m starting to wear out on the use of ‘boondoggle’ in the discussion about HSR. Not by yourself but in general. Partly it sounds like something my grandfather would say and partly because it seems when conservatives can’t compose a cogent argument on a spending subject they trot out the word ‘boondoggle’ as if that will end the argument.
I did a little Google research and some of the ‘boondoggles’ of the past include:
The transcontinental railroad.
The first steam engine.
The first steamboat.
The Wright Brothers airplane.
The moon landings.
The Grand Coulee Dam.
The Golden Gate Bridge.
The New York subway system.
The US route system.
‘Macadam’ (paved) roads.
The Empire State Building.
Firearms that use cartridges instead of muzzle loading.
Iron clad warships.
Container cargo ships.
Just saying. (-:
The funny thing here is that you clearly didn’t bother to read to the end of my first post:
Except of course people wont actually be riding the train because it will be too expensive and on an inconvenient schedule. So basically you get what you have now and a train that flies by empty a few times a day.
As for your list “boondoggles”, notice how those were all advances in technology that nobody was sure there was a need for or how society would need or use them. HSR is a train, only “new” thing about it is speed. We already know how trains are used in society: freight. Passenger trains are the past in America. Cars are more convenient for anything you can drive in a day because you get to use your own schedule, bring more luggage, and have your car at your destination; and planes are more convenient for anything you can’t drive in a day because they’re faster, faster even that HSR.
Trains are the past, you can’t put the genie back in the bottle. People that want HSR want us to spend BILLIONS of dollars on something we already know people won’t use because they already aren’t. Amtrak was supposed to be a temporary solution while somebody figured out how to make trains profitable for a private company again. 40+ years later it’s still here and it’s still not profitable, and the Atlanta airport has more passengers in a year than the entirety of Amtrak. And changing the speed of the trains isn’t going to dramatically increase ridership, you’ll just have the same not enough people riding more expensive trains.
Can we do less? (/s)
Trains are catching on these days if you haven’t noticed. The Metrolink in Los Angeles is quite popular and the Capitol trains in Northern California have been an amazing success story. Both operate in short haul corridors where cars previously predominated.
Which brings me to this part of your comment:
“Cars are more convenient for anything you can drive in a day because you get to use your own schedule, bring more luggage, and have your car at your destination; and planes are more convenient for anything you cant drive in a day because theyre faster, faster even that HSR.”
Cars are more convenient for travel in uncongested areas and, as you said, they’re fine for up to a day’s drive but that’s for the odd trip, not for a commute.
Planes are also wonderful but given the hassles of travel to the airport, parking, and then getting to your flight and then vice-versa at your desitination planes are not as handy as they were prior to 9/11.
In corridors of 400 to 600 miles HSR is competitive with both cars and planes in terms of time savings. A 200mph train reduces those trips to three to four hours from downtown-to-downtown. That easily beats driving.
It also becomes competitive with planes when you look at portal-to-portal trips. Flying Sacramento to downtown LA via Burbank (which is faster than Sacto to LAX) is typically a four hour to five hour trip depending on traffic. HSR will do that same trip, reliably, in about four hours including stops from downtown Sacto to Union Station. And you don’t need to deal with the TSA or rental cars.
More important for towns like Bakersfield and maybe even Fresno is that HSR makes it possible for people living in those cities to commute to San Francisco or LA to work and that will help those local economies. No working person in their right mind would do that commute by car or air right now.
For us in Wyoming a HSR corridor is being talked about from Cheyenne through Denver to as far as maybe Pueblo. We do go to Denver often and being able to just drive to Cheyenne and then hop a train into Denver would be awesome. Again, such a train opens up possibilities for workers that don’t exist right now.
But I know you are against rail and nothing I say will sway you.
Except maybe this: All the billions to be poured into HSR will be billions that the Democrats can’t give to illegal aliens and etc.
Average weekday ridership is 41,000 people, and the population of the region it services is 25,000,000. That’s .164% of the population using it. That’s not quite popular, that’s basically nobody, cars are STILL predominant.
Cars are still better for a commute too. For many of the same reasons I outlined, you get to leave on your schedule, and you have your car at your destination.
For train travel of distance you still have the problems you outlined for planes. You still have to get to the train depot, park, get to your train. And one of these days we’ll remember that terrorists have targeted passenger rail successfully in other countries and the post 9/11 hassles will land at the train depot too.
In the 400 to 600 mile range HSR can’t compete with cars. You get all the plain hassles that you outlined, and the luggage limit, and it’s probably not going to be nonstop so it won’t be much faster than the car if it’s faster at all.
It’s not competitive with planes because even if it runs nonstop it won’t be as fast as planes, and it won’t run nonstop. And you’ll still have to deal with rental cars.
If the train makes things “better” for the people in cities in the middle it’s because it stopped there. Which slows the train down, which makes it worse for people trying to get through that city to someplace else.
It doesn’t open up any possibilities. It won’t be much faster than the car, and it will be significantly more expensive, and you won’t arrive in Denver with your car.
I’m not against trains, I’m against wasting MY money on lies. The simple truth is America has moved beyond trains, they offer nothing for us anymore, and spending BILLIONS to make them a little faster won’t make them any better. The way America west of the Mississippi is laid out is just not conducive for them. You can drive to your destination cheaper or fly there fast. Period. It’s why we don’t ride trains in this country, and that’s not going to change.
And who says they can’t give the money to illegal aliens? Who do you think gets big government construction jobs? The construction company building the border fence in San Diego hired illegals. This about the hilarity of that.
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