Tuesday, July 26, 2016

The Repugs are right about high-speed rail

Former Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood

Libertarian Randal O'Toole on the Republican platform:

The current administration’s transportation department “subordinates civil engineering to social engineering as it pursues an exclusively urban vision of dense housing and government transit,” notes page 5 of the 2016 Republican Party Platform. For example, the administration’s “ill-named Livability Initiative is meant to ‘coerce people out of their cars.'”

...The [Republican]platform also calls for privatizing Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor (as if any private investor would want it), but says nothing about the rest of Amtrak other than it is “extremely expensive for the American taxpayers, who must subsidize every ticket.” 

It is more definitive with regard to high-speed rail, saying “we reaffirm our intention to end federal support for boondoggles like California’s high-speed train to nowhere.”

Rob's comment:
High-speed rail and the Obama administration's anti-carism may be the only thing the Repugs are right about, though Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger supported the project when he was Governor of California.

President Obama, who I happily voted for twice, has never shown that he knows anything about transportation, which his appointment of Ray LaHood as transportation secretary demonstrated. 

LaHood consistently showed how clueless he was with his anti-car, pro-train statements, like this bit of stupidity:

One of our signature transportation programs will be connecting America with high-speed intercity rail, so people can get out of their cars. They can take a train ride to see Grandma rather than doing it in a car.

They can do that only if grandma's house happens to be next to a train station.

The Obama administration gave California $3 billion for its dumb high-speed rail project, an enormous waste of taxpayers' money on a project that will never get built.

Streetsblog keeps hope alive for the boondoggle.

Note on usage: Sorry to see O'Toole using "with regard to" when "about" or "on" would have been a lot better.

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