Thursday, January 08, 2015

Governor on high-speed rail: "Don't worry about it."

Governor Brown and stooges

Kathy Hamilton on

...Gov. Jerry Brown spoke last and dug into his dictionary to call project opponents “pusillanimous,” which Merriam-Webster defines as, “weak and afraid of danger; lacking courage and resolution; marked by contemptible timidity.”

But he did concede a question, “Where the hell are we going to get the rest of the money?” To which he quickly replied, “Don’t worry about it, we’re going to get it.” More detailed answers may come Friday when he releases his state budget proposal for fiscal year 2015-16, which begins on July 1.

The shovel-less groundbreaking was for the initial segment, 29 miles between Madera and Fresno. But even for this initial segment, many obstacles remain across the tracks.

As reported two weeks ago, although Bakersfield dropped its lawsuit against the project, six other lawsuits remain.

The CHSRA has not finished an environmental analysis on all the required segments to build the initial operating segment.

And the CHSRA has obtained only about 20 percent of the properties needed for the first segment. It still needs to get 80 percent of the properties, then demolish any structures on them.

Several attorneys talked to said the groundbreaking ceremony was more appearance than reality.

Stuart Flashman is an attorney for Kings County and two local citizens opposing the high-speed rail project. He said:

“My clients understand that the Authority, having promised the Federal Railroad Administration that construction would start in 2012, are feeling that they need to put a spade in the ground, at least for show. That is all this groundbreaking is. It is certainly not earth shattering, or even ‘groundbreaking’ in terms of actual progress of the Authority’s plans.”

Said his colleague, Mike Brady:

“Instead of a groundbreaking, this should be called a ‘breaking of faith’ with Central Valley residents, who are being treated very shoddily. Only a fraction of the land value is being offered to landowners, despite past promises; their rights are being stepped on. Overall, the Authority is two years behind in its critical schedule. Very little ‘contiguous’ land has been acquired. That has not allowed the Authority to make real progress in laying track. The groundbreaking is a charade...”

Rob's comment:
The more Governor Brown talks the dumber he seems. He decided to support the ruinously expensive high-speed rail project because of his wife?

“I wasn’t quite sure where the hell we were going to get the rest of the money,” he said, recalling how his wife, Anne Gust Brown, a Republican at the time, had urged him to push forward when he returned to office in 2011, shortly after they married. “But don’t worry about it. We are going to get it. We’ve overcome a lot of obstacles.”

We elected this guy to worry about this stuff. If he---and the state's Democrats---aren't worried, we're fucked. There's no way the state can get the money to build this project, but Governor Brown and the Democratic Party can bleed the cap-and-trade account dry for years to keep the project on life support, though that's of doubtful legality and is being litigated. Just the annual interest---which will come out of the general fund---on the $9.95 billion in bonds authorized by state voters in 2008 will be $647 million a year!

We also learned recently that Governor Brown is still working on his Daddy Issues:

Jerry Brown disclosed he has always had the fantasy about having a high-speed train in California ever since his father took him on train ride when he was a little boy. Brown actually referred to the train as his choo-choo train several times during the visit.

This guy may be dotty.

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