Nobody is going from New York to Los Angeles by "high speed rail."
That doesn't mean that high speed rail won't be practical between cities with much much intercity traffic.
It's not an enemy of highways or airlines, but something to help cope with and reduce congestion.
“This map is just some freelance kook’s imagining.”
Not that I support the idea, but from the article comes this statement:
>>Twu’s not just guessing where those routes should be, either. “The routes are based on various studies by government agencies and advocacy groups,” he explains. <<
That means that someone has spent taxpayer money on these various proposals and this map is just a summary of all of those proposals in one, single graphic.