LaHood: Golly, I envy the Chinese government

posted at 3:46 pm on July 6, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

It’s bad enough to have a columnist at one of America’s most prominent newspapers regularly singing the praises of Chinese authoritarianism.  It’s worse when high-ranking members of the American government do it.  Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood griped at the Aspen Ideas Festival about having to deal with political opposition, and yearned for the ease in which Beijing could impose solutions without having to deal with dissent:

Echoing the laments of pundits like Thomas Friedman of the New York Times, U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood argued Saturday that China outpaces the United States in building major transportation infrastructure like high-speed rail because of its authoritarian system and because the Chinese don’t have the Republican Party holding up progress.

“The Chinese are more successful [in building infrastructure] because in their country, only three people make the decision. In our country, 3,000 people do, 3 million,” LaHood said in a short interview with The Cable on the sidelines of the 2012 Aspen Ideas Festival on June 30. “In a country where only three people make the decision, they can decide where to put their rail line, get the money, and do it. We don’t do it that way in America.” …

“Two years ago, between 50 to 60 Republicans were elected to the House of Representatives to come to Washington to do nothing, and that’s what they’ve done and they’ve stopped any progress. Those people don’t have any vision about what the government can do. That’s been a real inhibitor in our ability to think outside the box and think big,” he said.

Er, high-speed rail is outside the box?  Democrats have been pushing that idea for decades, even while our current passenger-rail monopoly eats government subsidies while delivering the kind of performance one would expect from an anachronistic transportation medium. Air travel surpassed fixed-rail transportation in the 1950s and 1960s, with its flexibility on routes and moderately free-market competition for passengers.

In California, for instance, the state and the federal government will spend $100 billion to build a route between San Francisco and Los Angeles that will consist of a government monopoly riding on tracks near one of the largest earthquake faults in the world for most of its length, all to deliver passengers slower and at greater overall cost between two fixed points.  Airlines give consumers a choice of carriers and airports on either end of that route, will deliver passengers more quickly, and probably with a much wider choice of departure and arrival times. That sounds a lot more “outside the box,” and since the infrastructure for that already exists, it won’t cost an additional $100 billion for a state chronically in ten-figure budget deficits year in and year out.

Furthermore, the people sent those “50 to 60 Republicans” not to do nothing, but specifically to block the Obama administration’s agenda on big-spending government.  That is how democracy works, and why we have midterm elections — so that voters can issue a corrective to Presidents and Congresses that defy public will.  LaHood tried to tell The Cable that “democracy is preferable” after his hosanna to China, but it’s not clear that LaHood even understands how democracy works.

David Harsanyi echoes that concern at Human Events:

In my career, I’ve been lucky enough to meet cabinet members, governors, senators and even a few presidential candidates, but, honestly, I’ve never met anyone less impressive at the higher levels of government than LaHood. When I listened to him claim that commercial flying was a perilous mode of transportation, heard him say that bullet trains would soon replace cars and claim that building more bike lanes would solve the congestion problems in major cities … well, how can I put this: giving someone this silly a cabinet position should be an impeachable offense. Remember this is the guy who recklessly, and without evidence, suggested Americans “stop driving” Toyota for safety reasons right in the middle of the debate over the General Motors rescue.

And how has China’s authoritarianism worked out for its high-speed rail infrastructure?  About as well as you’d expect:

The problem — beyond the idea of spending untold billions on the antiquated technology of static choo-choo trains — is that the three people making all these wonderful decisions in China now have a high-speed rail system plagued by failurecorruption, out-of-control costs and legitimate safety concerns.

Apparently, LaHood hasn’t heard about this, despite Charles Lane’s exposé at the Washington Post in April 2011.  It’s yet another measure of the cluelessness of the China-boosters, but then again, anyone demanding massive government expenditures on fixed-rail transportation can’t be all that terribly bright in the first place.


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Tyrant envy.

NotCoach on July 6, 2012 at 3:47 PM

Was wondering how long it’d take to post this.

Those people don’t have any vision about what the government can do.

*cringe*

lorien1973 on July 6, 2012 at 3:47 PM

There’s the door! I’m sure you’d fit right in under the Communist Chinese government system.

PS. Take your bosses with you!

Meople on July 6, 2012 at 3:49 PM

Can we call them communists now?

jawkneemusic on July 6, 2012 at 3:50 PM

Golly lahood, you have NO idea how much I wish your boss, bho/team/and you, would move to china and see how YOU like it there! None of this pesky constitution, laws, courts, congress, voters, to deal with in china or russia!

Gotta say this, just can not help myself, I ha!e the whole blooming bunch!
L

letget on July 6, 2012 at 3:50 PM

LaHood, what an appropriate name. He is a first class idiot with entirely too much power…. from chicago no less.

All the things he talks about have an enormous cost and little return. Think about how much bike lanes cost per ridden mile. It’s astronomical since they are a part of the road way that must be refurbed every few years. It probably adds 20% to the cost of any road and is used less than 0.1% as often.

aniptofar on July 6, 2012 at 3:51 PM

I believe Jonah Goldberg described the phenomenon well when he said that Obama administration officials and 5th column liberal media hacks (he was kinder in his description) praise Chinese authoritarian capitalism, what they actually envy is the authoritarianism.

BKennedy on July 6, 2012 at 3:52 PM

In California, for instance, the state and the federal government will spend $100 billion to build a route between San Francisco and Los Angeles that will consist of a government monopoly riding on tracks near one of the largest earthquake faults in the world for most of its length, all to deliver passengers slower and at greater overall cost between two fixed points.

HSR is needed to shuttle illegals and/or welfare moochers within CA, so that they can comfortably go to all the counties from where they get their benefits ,
and to distribute drugs from mexico

burrata on July 6, 2012 at 3:52 PM

And this clown was a Republican.

stldave on July 6, 2012 at 3:53 PM

Didn’t Clint Eastwood sort out some punk called LaHood in Pale Rider?

EnglishRogue on July 6, 2012 at 3:53 PM

3000? Try 1, just ask justice Roberts.

ReformedDeceptiCon on July 6, 2012 at 3:53 PM

LaHood: don’t let the doorknob hit ya where the Good Lord split ya. In other words: AMF. And take O’Bumbles with you.

Moose Drool on July 6, 2012 at 3:54 PM

Was wondering how long it’d take to post this.

Those people don’t have any vision about what the government can do.
*cringe*

lorien1973 on July 6, 2012 at 3:47 PM

That darn Constitution says what the governemnt can’t do to you – but it doesn’t say what they have to do on your behalf!

CycloneCDB on July 6, 2012 at 3:55 PM

LaHood: Golly, I envy the Chinese government

“In their country, only three people make the decision. In our country, 3,000 people do.”

…HEY MOTHERFUDGER! Here…millions make decisions whenever they vote!…That’s why some of the fudgelickers get voted out!

KOOLAID2 on July 6, 2012 at 3:55 PM

Marxist shows himself. In other news the sun still rises in the east.

bgibbs1000 on July 6, 2012 at 3:57 PM

“Two years ago, between 50 to 60 Republicans were elected to the House of Representatives to come to Washington to do nothing, and that’s what they’ve done and they’ve stopped any progress. Those people don’t have any vision about what the government can do. That’s been a real inhibitor in our ability to think outside the box and think big,” he said.

First encouraging thing I’ve read in a while. :)

Axe on July 6, 2012 at 3:58 PM

It’s bothersome when that whole “By the People” thingy gets in the way, isn’t it, Ray?

kingsjester on July 6, 2012 at 3:59 PM

It’s easier to be presidentin and transportationin’ in China…..

ted c on July 6, 2012 at 3:59 PM

LaHood is another Chicago Democrat Machine politico showing his true colors! In this case, Commie Red!

pilamaye on July 6, 2012 at 3:59 PM

Back in the USSR…..

portlandon on July 6, 2012 at 3:59 PM

Idiot

cmsinaz on July 6, 2012 at 4:00 PM

Those people don’t have any vision about what the government can do.

Echoing Lorien for emphasis. Says it all, really. Except for a small bit about frogs, but we can worry about that later.

Axe on July 6, 2012 at 4:00 PM

But thats how they make things happen in Chi Town

wheels on July 6, 2012 at 4:01 PM

And this clown was a Republican.

stldave on July 6, 2012 at 3:53 PM

Which is why I am not a Republican. The Republican Party is chockfull of nasty progressives.

I am a conservative. Period.

Norwegian on July 6, 2012 at 4:02 PM

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood argued Saturday that China outpaces the United States in building major transportation infrastructure like high-speed rail because of its authoritarian system and because the Chinese don’t have the Republican Party holding up progress.

It also has a Democratic Party that has driven the American Can-Do spirit into the ground and is replacing it with the Nanny-Nation, Rely On Government To Fulfill Your Every Need mentality!

THIS is why China outpaces the United States, because certified jerks like LaHood LET THEM!

pilamaye on July 6, 2012 at 4:02 PM

Those people don’t have any vision about what the government can do.

Wrong. I can see what the government can do. That’s why I despise these people so much.

trigon on July 6, 2012 at 4:03 PM

LaHood needs to be shipped off to China. Maybe the Chinese will give him a ghost city all to himself? He could do ANYTHING he wanted.

All I can say is that LaHood was aptly named.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on July 6, 2012 at 4:04 PM

Individual Freedom sure is a Bitch… Huh…

Since he is of no use anymore, there is no gain if he lives and no loss if he dies. POL POT

roflmmfao

donabernathy on July 6, 2012 at 4:04 PM

Emigration is a two-way street, bucko.

Shorter LaHood: “I want to be a very powerful communist”

BobMbx on July 6, 2012 at 4:04 PM

Can’t make this stuff up. Sheesh.

catwrangler on July 6, 2012 at 4:05 PM

You want to know what a nation under judgement looks like?

tom daschle concerned on July 6, 2012 at 4:06 PM

Bicycles and trains, yeah Forward they say. I laugh everytime I hear President Downgrade spout off about republicans wanting to take us back in time. Move to China and let me know how that works for you LaHood when you are not one of those three people you envy so much.

Ellis on July 6, 2012 at 4:06 PM

To add insult to injury, even Chinese dictators are smarter than Ogabe’s team…

Archivarix on July 6, 2012 at 4:06 PM

“Two years ago, between 50 to 60 Republicans were elected to the House of Representatives to come to Washington to do nothing, and that’s what they’ve done and they’ve stopped any progress.

Translation: “The damn people were allowed to vote for candidates with the express purpose of opposing our policies. It’s impossible to rule our subjects when ordinary Americans can thwart our infinitely superior wisdom and virtue at the ballot box.”

RadClown on July 6, 2012 at 4:07 PM

Move there then and shut your yap.

Mini-14 on July 6, 2012 at 4:07 PM

I hereby rule that Ray TheHood is an un-Constitutional tax on what’s left of America.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on July 6, 2012 at 4:07 PM

And those 3 have dissenters shot in the back of the head.

docflash on July 6, 2012 at 4:08 PM

They keep sending signals that they would have no problem with a dictator….as long as it is a Democrat Party dictator.

GardenGnome on July 6, 2012 at 4:08 PM

And there you have it – how liberals dream.

sdbatboy on July 6, 2012 at 4:08 PM

To add insult to injury, even Chinese dictators are smarter than Ogabe’s team…

Archivarix on July 6, 2012 at 4:06 PM

So was the student council at my junior high school.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on July 6, 2012 at 4:08 PM

Can we call them communists now?

jawkneemusic on July 6, 2012 at 3:50 PM

F’ing commies.

peski on July 6, 2012 at 4:09 PM

I’m noticing a distinct lack of trolldom on this thread. Are they all opposed to getting things done in an expeditious fashion?

a capella on July 6, 2012 at 4:09 PM

This tells you all you need to know about this administration and the mentality of the people who occupy it.

123 days left to save the Republic.

ICanSeeNovFromMyHouse on July 6, 2012 at 4:10 PM

I am a conservative. Period.

Norwegian on July 6, 2012 at 4:02 PM

You don’t vote in Primaries?

Buttercup on July 6, 2012 at 4:10 PM

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood argued Saturday that China outpaces the United States in building major transportation infrastructure like high-speed rail because of its authoritarian system and because the Chinese don’t have the Republican Party holding up progress.

Translation :
Obama wants to burn down America and those darn American people send in the Republicans who won’t let us light the match

burrata on July 6, 2012 at 4:10 PM

MSM plays his words 24/7… and they are JUST OUTRAGED!
.
.
.
…F R E E D O M …!!!

KOOLAID2 on July 6, 2012 at 4:11 PM

123 days left to save the Republic.

ICanSeeNovFromMyHouse on July 6, 2012 at 4:10 PM

To “possibly restore” it, you mean. The Republic is already toast. Benedict Roberts put the final nail in that coffin.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on July 6, 2012 at 4:11 PM

Can we call them communists now?

jawkneemusic on July 6, 2012 at 3:50 PM

I believe we can.

Falz on July 6, 2012 at 4:12 PM

I’m noticing a distinct lack of trolldom on this thread. Are they all opposed to getting things done in an expeditious fashion?

a capella on July 6, 2012 at 4:09 PM

I’m beginning to think our trolling army is just two or three people and a sock-puppet theatre. They come in together, blast through together, leave together … you’d think several groups just happened to be on the same schedule.

Axe on July 6, 2012 at 4:12 PM

Oh I’m sorry LaHood. Let me apologize on behalf of Franklin, Washington, Adams, and the rest of our Founding Fathers for crafting a political system where the people have a say in what its government does and looks like, as opposed to what you really want which is absolute power and no questions when you try to enrich yourself and your friends via stolen money.
As a show of good faith, let me help you pack for your permanent trip to mainland China. I’m sure you’re scary intellect and obvious positive physical attributes will be put to good use by the three people in China who run things.
What an absolute tool.

smfic on July 6, 2012 at 4:13 PM

The effort by leftists to “end America’s long love affair with the automobile” continues apace.

They want us all to be simply herded around by a centrally controlled system they can manage from DC.

I’ve seen a Senate hearing a few years ago, I believe it was Sen. Boxer’s chairmanship of that environmental committee, where she called some “transportation experts” to discuss how to “get Americans out of their cars and into mass transit”.

The automobile is destroying our environment, you see, and all this personal freedom of movement is annoying to these bureaucrat masterminds who MUST have a greater degree of control over how Americans get to work, and go on vacation. It is so “inefficient” for one person to hop in their car and drive from one coast to the other, changing their route, where and when they may stop along the way.

I would put train travel at the bottom of the list of options to get somewhere just about every time. I like to be my own travel director, and if I want to take a detour somewhere I like to be able to simply go where I want, when I want.

Air travel has the big advantage of speed, so to travel at 600mph is worth sacrificing that liberty on the journey, especially a long one. If you have the time to go on the ground, nothing beats driving yourself in my opinion, especially in a vehicle with some endearing character traits.

The harder they push for this sort of thing, the more resistance they will encounter.

If you want to purchase or lease a nice big RV, you get the services of a nice train while being able to take your dining and sleeper car anywhere there is a half way decent road. Why give that up for the sardine can of trains? Especially at the “coach” level of ticket price.

Brian1972 on July 6, 2012 at 4:13 PM

He fits right in, in this administration.

JimK on July 6, 2012 at 4:13 PM

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood argued Saturday that China outpaces the United States in building major transportation infrastructure like high-speed rail because of its authoritarian system and because the Chinese don’t have the Republican Party holding up progress.

If we could only make the Republican Party move over there behind that wall, out of sight of everyone, progress could really be made. For grins, we could call these areas ghettos where they could live away from peaceable society.

lorien1973 on July 6, 2012 at 4:13 PM

“Two years ago, between 50 to 60 Republicans were elected to the House of Representatives to come to Washington to do nothing, and that’s what they’ve done and they’ve stopped any progress.
That depends on your definition of “progress.” I was hoping that we could send 535 “do nothings” to Washington so the Ray LaHood’s would leave.

RickinNH on July 6, 2012 at 4:14 PM

Two years ago, between 50 to 60 Republicans were elected to the House of Representatives to come to Washington to do nothing [stop petty tyrants like yourself, your ineligible boss and the rest of the America-hating scum filling the Executive branch].

Sadly, they were cowards and failed miserably.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on July 6, 2012 at 4:16 PM

Perhaps Transportation Secretary LaHood should transport himself (via China’s marvelous high speed rail) to China where he could dictate to his heart’s desire, I’m sure. Liberal camouflage: red white and blue on one side; red on the other.

ghostwalker1 on July 6, 2012 at 4:17 PM

Freudian leftist thugs!

Schadenfreude on July 6, 2012 at 4:18 PM

China also has prison labor camps for those who disagree with the folks running the show. I’m sure LaHood would like to have a couple of those as well.

GarandFan on July 6, 2012 at 4:19 PM

O/T via Drudge :
http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/hours-after-meeting-obama-ohio-restaurant-owner-dies_648200.html

owner of an Akron restaurant where President Barack Obama stopped for breakfast this morning died, apparently of a heart attack, shortly after meeting him.

burrata on July 6, 2012 at 4:19 PM

Fight this gov’t with all you have.

Schadenfreude on July 6, 2012 at 4:19 PM

So a democrat envy’s a communist country…what exactly is the story here.

The Notorious G.O.P on July 6, 2012 at 4:20 PM

Fight this gov’t with all you have.

Schadenfreude on July 6, 2012 at 4:19 PM

I see the illegal firing of another IG in the near future …

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on July 6, 2012 at 4:21 PM

This administration seems to be chock full of tyrants who are also incompetent and unqualified in their respective areas of responsibilities.

INC on July 6, 2012 at 4:22 PM

Bo Bo da clownnnnn !

Hummer53 on July 6, 2012 at 4:22 PM

I see the illegal firing of another IG in the near future …

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on July 6, 2012 at 4:21 PM

The whistleblwer has already been demoted and his salary was cut.

This is worse than Russia in “the most transparent admin. in all of history”.

Send them home in Nov., mocking them out of town, in shame, so as to never repeat such thuggery.

Schadenfreude on July 6, 2012 at 4:22 PM

The look on bho’s face in the picture, ‘you said all that without a teleprompter ray’?
L

letget on July 6, 2012 at 4:23 PM

This is the token R in this admin. if memory serves right.

May all the RINOs spontaneously combust, along with all the leftist looters in the admin.

Schadenfreude on July 6, 2012 at 4:24 PM

If these idiots don’t watch out, they are going to cause a shooting war to break out. Maybe that’s what they want.

platypus on July 6, 2012 at 4:24 PM

Obama look like the moron he is in that picture.

Schadenfreude on July 6, 2012 at 4:24 PM

Another angle is the price of fuel.

Many liberal think tank types have been saying openly for years that if Americans had to pay for fuel what Europeans have to pay, it would make it economically difficult for as many Americans to drive as much as we do, and FORCE many of us to take mass transit, and for those still on the roads the higher cost would FORCE a reduction in fuel use, thereby “guiding” us idiots into saving the planet against our will.

This is what we are facing, Chinese style authoritarianism hiding inside the Democrat Party in a Constitutional Republic.

Brian1972 on July 6, 2012 at 4:25 PM

I hear Chitcago works that way, also. Maybe it’s time for LaTard to just go home.

MNHawk on July 6, 2012 at 4:27 PM

This is the token R in this admin. if memory serves right.

Don’t forget Mike Huntsman. He also loooooved the Chinese.

May all the RINOs spontaneously combust, along with all the leftist looters in the admin.

Schadenfreude on July 6, 2012 at 4:24 PM

Hear, hear! And burn slowly.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on July 6, 2012 at 4:27 PM

I wish Ed would come to China so I could re-educate him.

America has unfortunately devolved from a republic into a democracy, and that’s why it’s going to fail.

DarkCurrent on July 6, 2012 at 4:27 PM

Everyone around and including Obama is a closet commie.

albill on July 6, 2012 at 4:28 PM

DarkCurrent on July 6, 2012 at 4:27 PM

50 cents for you!

lorien1973 on July 6, 2012 at 4:28 PM

In my career, I’ve been lucky enough to meet cabinet members, governors, senators and even a few presidential candidates, but, honestly, I’ve never met anyone less impressive at the higher levels of government than LaHood.

I have to take issue with this. I have never, in my life, heard anyone say, “The house is not in order!”, or “There is a call for the yea’s and ney’s.” like this guy did. So that didn’t translate to success as Transportation Secretary….who would have thought? Oh, and he did have it right when he said the new congress was sent there to stop Obama.

Night Owl on July 6, 2012 at 4:29 PM

Well, three people pretty much made the decision about Obamacare: Obama, Pelosi and Reid. Oh yeah, that’s right, Roberts too. Gee, it is hard to get the liberal agenda accomplished here, isn’t it?

DaveDief on July 6, 2012 at 4:29 PM

lorien1973 on July 6, 2012 at 4:28 PM

Did you get a passport yet?

DarkCurrent on July 6, 2012 at 4:29 PM

I wish Ed would come to China so I could re-educate him.

DarkCurrent on July 6, 2012 at 4:27 PM

We know all about ‘re-education’ so I imagine Ed will pass on your generous offer.

sharrukin on July 6, 2012 at 4:31 PM

Another underling of The Emperor sheds his mask.

Mason on July 6, 2012 at 4:32 PM

The Chinese are more successful [in building infrastructure] because in their country, only three people make the decision.

Ok Ray, let’s say we did adopt your wished-for form of authoritarianism:

1.) Barak Obama

2.) Valarie Jarret

3.) Michelle Obama

oopsie, no decision-making position for you!

Flora Duh on July 6, 2012 at 4:33 PM

We know all about ‘re-education’ so I imagine Ed will pass on your generous offer.

sharrukin on July 6, 2012 at 4:31 PM

My senior handlers say they’d let him walk around by himself. He could even take pictures.

DarkCurrent on July 6, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Every time the Democrats get what they want “the system worked”. Every time the Democrats don’t get what they want…. or lately… even have to go through the appropriate channels or procedures to get what they want…”The system is broken” and its all the fault of the ‘obstructionist Republicans’ who denied them what they wanted or forced them to observe protocol and procedure. This despite the fact that Americans elected those ‘obstructionist Republicans’ specifically to put a check on the political ambitions and runaway spending of the Democrats.

This bent toward admiring dictators and tyrants by many on the left is not only repellent to those living in a democratic republic and happy with that circumstance… its dangerous to the political ambitions of DEMOCRATS.

I’ll explain: AMERICANS ARE FIERCELY PROUD OF OUR DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC. WE THINK THAT OUR SYSTEM WORKS FINE AND THE MORE WE LEARN OF OTHER SYSTEMS…. THE BETTER WE LIKE OUR OWN.

Mr. LaHood needs to go home and contemplate the kind of damage that people like himself and Anita Dunne are doing to their own party with these patently anti-democratic, anti-American, expressions of admiration for the CHINESE COMMUNIST SYSTEM.

I know several former Democrats who haven’t bothered to change their party affiliation on their voter registration cards, but who assure me that statements like the aforementioned of Mr. LaHood, along with the disastrous policy decision of this administration and the dubious leadership of people like former Speaker Pelosi, will cause them to vote Republican in this upcoming election. For some of them, this will be the first time they they will have voted for a Republican and the reason is the hard lurch to the left taken by many in leadership of the Democratic Party.

thatsafactjack on July 6, 2012 at 4:35 PM

We don’t have a wall stopping you from leaving, Ray.

Eren on July 6, 2012 at 4:36 PM

IIRC, more than one official in the Wilson and FDR Administrations sang the praises of European Fascists and Soviets, so there’s precedent with American Democrats for this sort of thing.

RobertE on July 6, 2012 at 4:36 PM

Did you get a passport yet?

DarkCurrent on July 6, 2012 at 4:29 PM

I’ll still take our crumbling republic over communist China thanks!
Though I wouldn’t mind going on vacation to China.

gwelf on July 6, 2012 at 4:36 PM

My cousins visited China two years ago Both of them were construction workers in NYC. The travel agency took their group to see a high rise under construction. They saw workers in sandals and cardboard shoes. They also saw men standing around in orderly lines. When they asked the Chinese tour guide what these men were doing they were told that the men were waiting for workers to get hurt and they would be sent in to take the injured guy’s place. My cousin said it reminded him of stories of the Redcoats at Bunker Hill and New Orleans. And these guys were drawing a percentage of pay for their standby status. A worker’s life in the People’s Paradise.

xkaydet65 on July 6, 2012 at 4:37 PM

It’s funny how the West likes to talk about “The Great Wall of China” while the Chinese used to refer to it as “The Longest Graveyard in the World”.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on July 6, 2012 at 4:37 PM

Don’t ask what your country can do for you, ask what your country can do to make your neighbor pay for us to do something for you.

gwelf on July 6, 2012 at 4:38 PM

Oh that wonderful Chinese infrastructure. Like running water? No thanks, I will give up high speed rail and keep my running water.

bopbottle on July 6, 2012 at 4:38 PM

LaHood: Golly, I envy the Chinese government

With the election of Obama the totalitarian left is becoming less and less afraid to show themselves.

RJL on July 6, 2012 at 4:39 PM

OT: Obama killed a Woman in Ohio today……

portlandon on July 6, 2012 at 4:41 PM

So, Ray LaBoob is at the Aspen Ideas Festival but he thinks that only 3 people should make decisions on projects like high speed rail? How original.

LetsBfrank on July 6, 2012 at 4:41 PM

My senior handlers say they’d let him walk around by himself. He could even take pictures.

DarkCurrent on July 6, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Well that sounds a lot better.

Seriously I am sure the Chinese people are nice but the government leaves something to be desired and that is what LaHood is envious of….the power to bend other men to his will.

sharrukin on July 6, 2012 at 4:42 PM

In California, for instance, the state and the federal government will spend $100 billion to build a route between San Francisco and Los Angeles that will consist of a government monopoly riding on tracks near one of the largest earthquake faults in the world for most of its length, all to deliver passengers slower and at greater overall cost between two fixed points. Airlines give consumers a choice of carriers and airports on either end of that route, will deliver passengers more quickly, and probably with a much wider choice of departure and arrival times. That sounds a lot more “outside the box,” and since the infrastructure for that already exists, it won’t cost an additional $100 billion for a state chronically in ten-figure budget deficits year in and year out.

Strangely enough, in our “messy democracy” where so many people who disagree get involved in decision-making, some fixed-rail transportation systems do make money, without government subsidies: freight trains.

Freight trains are remarkably efficient at hauling heavy loads over long distances, at less cost than trucks, and they can haul loads much too heavy for a plane to lift. Freight railroads don’t go begging the Government for money, because there’s still a market demand for them.

But for would-be railroad tycoons like Ray LaHood, how DARE those Wright brothers ruin his dream with their flying machine, that gets people to Chattanooga faster than his choo-choo? Even that old out-of-touch John McCain could fly them! Maybe that’s why the Obama Administration didn’t want Boeing building planes in South Carolina…

How about we name Ray LaHood King of Antarctica, and he can decide all alone to build his transcontinental bullet train there! Good luck getting the money, the penguins don’t have much of it!

Steve Z on July 6, 2012 at 4:43 PM

So….

Moron thinks he’s gonna be in the first american triumvirate…

isn’t that special.

WryTrvllr on July 6, 2012 at 4:43 PM

My senior handlers say they’d let him walk around by himself. He could even take pictures.

DarkCurrent on July 6, 2012 at 4:34 PM

Hmmm…one wonders what the “junior” handlers would be doing.

2L8 on July 6, 2012 at 4:44 PM

What is about big-gov totalitarians and their love of 19th century transportation?

jukin3 on July 6, 2012 at 4:44 PM

Thatsafact – it actually is a representative republic – of course a democratic form of govt.

Pure democracy or anything close to it scares the hell out of me. It also scared the Founders, and with good reason.

Zomcon JEM on July 6, 2012 at 4:45 PM

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