Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Economy

The Fast Track to Government Waste

Robert Samuelson lays bare Obama's plan to "pay states $53 billion to build rail networks that would then lose money - lots - thereby aggravating the budget squeezes of the states or federal government, depending on which covered the deficits."

Is anyone unaware that high-speed rail would simply create another inefficient government program which fails to achieve any promised benefits and requires massive tax-payer subsidization to stay afloat? Under what system of reasoning is this a good idea?

Against history and logic is the imagery of high-speed rail as "green" and a cutting-edge technology.

It's a triumph of fancy over fact. Even if ridership increased fifteenfold over Amtrak levels, the effects on congestion, national fuel consumption and emissions would still be trivial. ...

Governing ought to be about making wise choices. What's disheartening about the Obama administration's embrace of high-speed rail is that it ignores history, evidence and logic. The case against it is overwhelming. The case in favor rests on fashionable platitudes. High-speed rail is not an "investment in the future"; it's mostly a waste of money. Good government can't solve all our problems, but it can at least not make them worse.

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