Republican Reps line up against high speed rail.

157 posts / 0 new

Comments

Choco, I do understand economics so that is why I made that statement. There are cases where demand is greatly reduced, so that price will fall, that is the point of technological innovation. You don't see a lot of demand for typewriters these days do you? I don't have an issue with windmills, nuclear, natural gas, solar, hydro, or whatever form of energy you wish to use to replace oil, as long as you are willing to support it and don't ask me to do so against my will. If battery technology improves then we will have more electric cars like those being produced by Tesla, or we could have vehicles run off of natural gas, which is a concept used in some cities for fleet vehicles. I am sure that with an increase in hybrid technology similar to the Prius, we will have vehicles that routinely get 100 mpg. I often thought as a younger person that commercial trucks with solar panels on the roof of the trailer and a large battery underneath might someday be a possibility.

I am not in the business of arbitrarily picking winners and losers and I think the government would be best following a similar path. Taking the chicken little "the sky is falling" approach to oil (or any commodity) isn't going to change my mind in regards to bad government spending. BTW whatever happened to the progressive wonder called ethanol? How did that boondoggle turn out?

tmoney13's picture
tmoney13
Joined:
May. 1, 2010 2:20 pm

Hope this ain't a repeat but Chicago to New York has a bid for High speed rail... THANK YOU liberals for bringing us into the 21st century. Hopefully, they can be solar powered and over time pay for themselves. Once the line is completed, we should all road trip from Chicago to New York and ask the train to slow down going thru Ohio and give the speaker and Gov a shout out... But then again they might be in office :) Today, I'm one step closer to joining the Democratic party.

And for a bonus point, rail project from Dwight, IL to St. Louis, MO starts this summer... Why Dwight??? It is a perfect position to link St.louis to Indianapolis and Chicago. I feel about this new technology like our elders felt when the TV was invented :)

junkmail5000@sbcglobal.net's picture
junkmail5000@sb...
Joined:
Sep. 14, 2010 5:39 pm

Think about 21st Century rail in Oregon. We have one AMTRAK corridor and lots of old, 19th Century rail, much rusting. Bus service stinks. Literally and figuratively. Eugene airport has few flights and costs more. PDX almost 2 hours away.

Imagine a good coastal tourism and commuter line. It made Cinquaterre in Italy into a tourist mecca instead of isolated fishing villages. Our highways are ok, but they get crowded and are not freeways, so getting to the coast and getting around there is not that easy. Good train service would make the tourist industry expand. It would also help get our fish to the artisanal markets our sustainable fishery needs.

I think of the Medford Station with trains departing for Crater Lake, Klamath Falls (and Amtrak), Eureka and the Redwoods or Coos Bay and the Umpqua. Then there is the spur to Ashland and the theater. Not only would building all this be jobs that cannot be outsourced, it would create the economic infrastructure that has been absent in the past. Getting their stuff to market is more than having some corporate agent buy at the lowest possible price to mass market. Controlling their system, something rail would help a lot, is the way to get our high value added products to the proper markets. It is how we ought to be doing wood as well.

We do not need to stop spending, but we do need to stop wasting. Every good investment that pays off should be sought, and when we really want something other than war, bombs and petro-entropy, we will stop shooting ourselves in the foot.

DRC's picture
DRC
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

High speed rail is nothing more than the Globalists wanting to put in a series of trains to make it easier for them to bring Americans to the FEMA Camps. Hitler used trains to carry the Jews to the Concentration Camps same NWO standard operating procedure..

Volitzer's picture
Volitzer
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm
Quote tmoney13:

Choco, I do understand economics so that is why I made that statement. There are cases where demand is greatly reduced, so that price will fall, that is the point of technological innovation. You don't see a lot of demand for typewriters these days do you? I don't have an issue with windmills, nuclear, natural gas, solar, hydro, or whatever form of energy you wish to use to replace oil, as long as you are willing to support it and don't ask me to do so against my will. If battery technology improves then we will have more electric cars like those being produced by Tesla, or we could have vehicles run off of natural gas, which is a concept used in some cities for fleet vehicles. I am sure that with an increase in hybrid technology similar to the Prius, we will have vehicles that routinely get 100 mpg. I often thought as a younger person that commercial trucks with solar panels on the roof of the trailer and a large battery underneath might someday be a possibility.

I am not in the business of arbitrarily picking winners and losers and I think the government would be best following a similar path. Taking the chicken little "the sky is falling" approach to oil (or any commodity) isn't going to change my mind in regards to bad government spending. BTW whatever happened to the progressive wonder called ethanol? How did that boondoggle turn out?

You may understand economics but it is clear that you don't really understand policy creation and how the government manages projects and populations. Setting aside dogmatic Libertarian arguments about "governments shouldn't manage the public because I said they don't have a right to", it is sort of ridiculous what you are asking for in this particular instance. Let me give some bullet point about random things you have said here and I would like to hear your response.

1. First, you call the Chicago area transit system "a money pit" yet you proclaim just as readily that you used it for 2 years and loved it. So, what is a "money pit" to you? If the rail was effective, the public uses it frequently, and reduces what is already horrible traffic congestion in the city is the money not well spent? You are a satisfied customer of the public good that is being provided! If this is the case for all Chicago-ians is this not a wise investment and NOT a "money pit". I swear half the arguments poeple make against public projects is a tacit assumption that somehow the government will waste money regardless of whether they have proof of it or not. Even when the government does provide a good service, people expect it to cost nothing to them as a tax payer and they just grab for more tax breaks and program defunding. Baffles the mind...

2. That aside, you are conflating to very different things - urban lightrail vs. high speed interstate rail are NO WHERE EVEN CLOSE to the same thing. In fact, the very nature of the high speed rail being inter-state immediately justifies this as a project with federal interests. Without coordination at the federal level, you are going to get some major hodge podge - which admittedly we are getting anyway because of some moron Republican Governors (SCOTT WALKER) that refuse the money.

3. EVEN IF the light rail could be 100% paid for by the users of the service there will always be some cost of investment to simply build the rail. You can't start collecting fares before the rail is built. If you really wanted the service to pay for itself, you would have to tax the revenue to build it first and THEN create a fee structure to pay the original cost back to the tax payer and cover the maintenance. You can't just materialize the entire infrastructure out of thin air. This also assumes that the only people who benefit from the rail are the people that get on the train. Does not the car driver benefit from reduced traffic as a result of people using the light rail? Do you not benefit as a tax payer in Chicago from reduced carbon emissions because your city has mass transit?

4. Despite what most conservatives think, the government does not "arbitrarily" pick winners or losers. While the current government seems particularly vulnerable to being coopted by special interests, when the system "works" the politicians would be providing inducements or subsidies for the types of behaviors that bring forth the greatest social benefit. All of the projects you mention in that last post have in some way been governmentally subsidized. Electronic and hybrid cars were not a spontaneous market driven development. The ONLY reason that they have developed so quickly in the last decade is because:

a) the government has put regulations in place that require car manufacturers to increase fuel economy and they have specific benchmarks to meet every few years.

b) The government has subsidized research by the manufacturers of cars and battery makers to bring about new technology faster.

c) Consumers purchasing of hybrid vehicles have been majorly subsidized by massive tax rebates which has bolstered demand significantly.

d) As result of these governmental initiatives, some of the car manufacturers have been selling their hybrid vehicles at a loss to grab market share (Ford definitely, maybe GM, too) because they know they will eventually have to leave the non-hybrid lines behind. A typical market would not support this type of behavior as long as it has currently been happening.

Now all that said, I will openly acknowledge that the "winners and losers" currently picked by the government more closely track lobbying and campaign donations rather than public benefit but that doesn't mean from a structural standpoint that government does not have a role in projects like high speed rail. The real problem there is one of representation, not policy mechanism.

What happened to Ethanol is a very complex set of issues. Some had to do what has happened in the agribusiness. Some of it has to do with oil prices changing. Some of it has to do with the fact that you lose fuel efficiency with it. Some of it has to do with the fact hybrids have become so popular and don't require as drastic an infrastructure alteration which is expensive. And some of it is the fact that many of the ethanol refineries were bought out by oil companies. Simply put, it was a much more complex thing to engineer from a policy standpoint than inducing hybrid engine production (with a large part of this being that hybrids still use the product the oil companies want to sell and Ethanol doesn't so much).

ah2
Joined:
Dec. 13, 2010 10:00 pm

High Speed Rail is code for FEMA CAMP TRAIN !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It is there to make the Globalists job easier to bring Americans to the FEMA Camps when the dollar collapses.

www.endofamerica60.com

Volitzer's picture
Volitzer
Joined:
Jul. 31, 2007 4:01 pm

Currently Chatting

Powered by Pressflow, an open source content management system