Are California Democrats abandoning Gov. Brown’s beloved high-speed rail boondoggle?

posted at 8:41 pm on February 20, 2014 by Erika Johnsen

As even the New York Times noted just after the New Year, California Gov. Jerry Brown’s pet high-speed rail project is turning into something of a disaster, with its projected budget now surpassing $68 billion and its completion date ranging somewhere around 2029 — not to mention a number of judicial “setbacks” and a handful of polls that have suggested voters would shoot the project down if it were put up for another state ballot initiative. Despite the state’s calamitous fiscal outlook, Brown remains undeterred, determined to defend his high-speed baby through to the end — but he might be the only one. Via the WSJ:

The latest indication that Gavin Newsom wants to succeed fellow Democrat Jerry Brown as California’s governor is his public denunciation of the increasingly unpopular bullet train project, which Mr. Newsom once supported.

I would take the dollars and redirect it to other, more pressing infrastructure needs, and I am not the only Democrat that feels this way,” said Mr. Newsom, the state’s lieutenant governor, in radio interview last week. And I’ve got to tell you, I am one of the few that just said it publicly.” …

“We don’t have the federal dollars that we were hoping for—only about $3 billion has come forward. The private sector hasn’t stepped up,” the lieutenant governor noted. …

The goal of Mr. Newsom’s ostensibly well-meaning criticism of the governor, then as now, is to present himself as the level-headed, honest guy in Sacramento. But the lieutenant governor, a rising star in the party, is also transparently aligning himself with public opinion.

Newsom might very well just be serving his best political interests here, but that doesn’t make him wrong. Even if California wasn’t facing a “wall of debt” and more unfunded pension liabilities than you can shake a stick at, the project was only ever going to be an overly expensive, unnecessary, and impractical hot mess. Let it go.


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Off to the William Ayer’s Memorial Community Reeducation and Conservative Elimination facility with you Erica… Do not pass go…. Do not collect 200 Obamabucks… Go straight to Hell….

oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 8:44 PM

68 billion is one loud flushing sound!

KCB on February 20, 2014 at 8:44 PM

The latest indication that Gavin Newsom wants to succeed fellow Democrat Jerry Brown …

What, is Stoner Brown planning on dying soon?

Pork-Chop on February 20, 2014 at 8:45 PM

DEMOCRATS abandon the ULTIMATE choo-choo that could carry CONSERVATIVES away from their beloved San Francisco to concentration uh, FUNCamp! out in the desert?

NEVER!

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 8:46 PM

Throw mama moonbeam from the train.

Lost in Jersey on February 20, 2014 at 8:47 PM

The latest indication that Gavin Newsom wants to succeed fellow Democrat Jerry Brown …

What, is Stoner Brown planning on dying soon?

Pork-Chop on February 20, 2014 at 8:45 PM

You heard it here first: Abortion Barbie will move to California and run to succeed Brown.

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 8:47 PM

I hope not. The sooner that state is bankrupt, the better.

xNavigator on February 20, 2014 at 8:48 PM

Gavin Newsom

That would be the former mayor of San Francisco. He was screwing the wife of his best friend.

Totally honorable Democrat.

GarandFan on February 20, 2014 at 8:49 PM

Even if Newsom is serving his best political interests here…

I dunno. I imagine it was a huge personal and political sacrifice for Gavin to forego officiating at the first gay marriage aboard the CAHSR.

de rigueur on February 20, 2014 at 8:50 PM

I hope not. The sooner that state is bankrupt, the better.

xNavigator on February 20, 2014 at 8:48 PM

Considering that California is 1/5th of the entire American economy…. well, it would seriously suck being you when that happens… But…. Please by all means continue living a beautiful fantasy life…

oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 8:50 PM

Private sector hasn’t stepped up? Maybe some audits are needed.

rbj on February 20, 2014 at 8:51 PM

Private sector hasn’t stepped up? Maybe some audits are needed.

rbj on February 20, 2014 at 8:51 PM

Once California institutes that 200% exit tax on all assets they’ll be set…

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 8:52 PM

Jerry Brown and California Dems to double-down in 5 .. 4 .. 3 …

ShainS on February 20, 2014 at 8:52 PM

Considering that California is 1/5th of the entire American economy…. well, it would seriously suck being you when that happens… But…. Please by all means continue living a beautiful fantasy life…

oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 8:50 PM

California is our Greece.

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 8:52 PM

erry Brown and California Dems to double-down in 5 .. 4 .. 3 …

ShainS on February 20, 2014 at 8:52 PM

It’s the only thing they know how to do.

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 8:53 PM

…keep smoking it!

KOOLAID2 on February 20, 2014 at 8:55 PM

Green shoots!

(Of fiscal sanity)

Nah…never mind

Franklin100 on February 20, 2014 at 8:55 PM

68 billion is one loud flushing sound!

KCB on February 20, 2014 at 8:44 PM

.
. . . : )

listens2glenn on February 20, 2014 at 8:57 PM

How much longer, till we privatize Amtrak ?

listens2glenn on February 20, 2014 at 8:58 PM

Considering that California is 1/5th of the entire American economy…. well, it would seriously suck being you when that happens… But…. Please by all means continue living a beautiful fantasy life…

oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 8:50 PM

California is our Greece.

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 8:52 PM

Ok, let’s get a couple of very simple things clear, ok???

1) The state government of California is Democrat… i.e., clinically insane…

2) Not all Californian’s are clinically insane…

California is the 8th most powerful economy on the face of the earth… (which by the way, is proof that number 2 is correct.)

California is not America’s Greece. It is suffering a very serious viral infection of liberal/Marxist stupid, but is a long ways yet from terminal.

oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 8:58 PM

California is not America’s Greece. It is suffering a very serious viral infection of liberal/Marxist stupid, but is a long ways yet from terminal.

oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 8:58 PM

Having enough people who will vote for liberal/marxist stupid IS terminal.

IE: See 52% who voted for Pharaoh Baracksees II twice…

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 9:02 PM

I miss my home state. I could cry at what it has become.

bazil9 on February 20, 2014 at 9:14 PM

bazil9 on February 20, 2014 at 9:14 PM

Hey B9 (waving)CA.

I hate what is happening to that State.

CoffeeLover on February 20, 2014 at 9:17 PM

I miss my home state. I could cry at what it has become.

bazil9 on February 20, 2014 at 9:14 PM

Me too, and I still live here…

oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 9:18 PM

California is not America’s Greece. It is suffering a very serious viral infection of liberal/Marxist stupid, but is a long ways yet from terminal.

It may or may not be terminal but it certainly shows no sign of improvement.

fegerter on February 20, 2014 at 9:18 PM

Having enough people who will vote for liberal/marxist stupid IS terminal.

IE: See 52% who voted for Pharaoh Baracksees II twice…

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 9:02 PM

I will defend OW here, it wasn’t just Ca that voted for stupid, so did the rest of the country, including flyover country.

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 9:19 PM

CoffeeLover on February 20, 2014 at 9:17 PM

*waves*

It is appalling. I do have fond memories..not the same place.
Glad mom got us the hell outta there.

bazil9 on February 20, 2014 at 9:19 PM

bazil9 on February 20, 2014 at 9:14 PM

Me too, and I still live here…

oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 9:18 PM

I know…:(

bazil9 on February 20, 2014 at 9:20 PM

The private sector hasn’t stepped up,” the lieutenant governor noted. …

To do what? To lose money?

If this high speed train was the best thing since sliced bread then it would have been built by the private sector especially if it was competative.

If somebody else, like taxpayers and the Feds, were subsidizing the project sufficient, then the private sector would contribute to the extent that they thought they would make a profit. This does not necessarily include a chance to overcharge the project with materials and/or services, and get as much money from it as possible before it completed or failed.

If it is a bad idea or one with very poor, if perhaps non-existent, prospects and less likelyhood of participants making a profit (or at least getting back much of their investment), then the private sector would stay away.

So why would the private sector not rush to participate?

Russ808 on February 20, 2014 at 9:21 PM

Plan to divide California into 6 states advances

Read more: http://www.kcra.com/news/plan-advances-to-divide-california-into-6-states/24588192#ixzz2tv3PNEcw

kcewa on February 20, 2014 at 9:21 PM

oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 8:50 PM

The nation as a whole will be all the better for identifying the tumor in the body politic and realizing it requires surgical removal. I’ll be quite happy to see the progressive state government of California go broke. It will also be helpful to the residents of California in the long run. All that is happening now is postponing the inevitable intersection of their policies and reality.

The sooner, the better.

xNavigator on February 20, 2014 at 9:22 PM

kcewa on February 20, 2014 at 9:21 PM

If you could cut off the costal communities, we would be a red state, hence the concept of the electoral college. Though even that now can’t prevent the high populous lib areas from determining an election.

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 9:23 PM

What is it with leftists and choo choo trains?

Why do they have thIs overwhelming need to build choo choo trains?

Did they not get toys to play with as children or what ?

knewshound on February 20, 2014 at 9:23 PM

What is the thing with leftists and trains? They seem obsessed. Something about making them run on time?

iurockhead on February 20, 2014 at 9:25 PM

What is it with leftists and choo choo trains?

Why do they have thIs overwhelming need to build choo choo trains?

Did they not get toys to play with as children or what ?

knewshound on February 20, 2014 at 9:23 PM

Beat me to it by this much *fingers pinched together*

iurockhead on February 20, 2014 at 9:28 PM

California is not America’s Greece. It is suffering a very serious viral infection of liberal/Marxist stupid, but is a long ways yet from terminal.

It may or may not be terminal but it certainly shows no sign of improvement.

fegerter on February 20, 2014 at 9:18 PM

I forgive people who have never visited California for having insane ideas like this. You read the news paper, or watch TV, and get you idea’s from that. California is the third largest state in the Union, and the most populated and straight up 1/5th of the entire United States economy. Putting us in a little tiny box like that is fools errand.

California is not terminal, at least not yet. We are an amazing powerhouse. writing us off and letting the Marxist democrat have there way way would not just be suicidal for California, but for the entire country.

Hey… but you go ahead and believe whatever make you feel good… That is exactly how America got where it is today…

oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 9:29 PM

California is not terminal, at least not yet. We are an amazing powerhouse. writing us off and letting the Marxist democrat have there way way would not just be suicidal for California, but for the entire country.

Hey… but you go ahead and believe whatever make you feel good… That is exactly how America got where it is today…

oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 9:29 PM

California is still alive, yes. It still can produce, yes.

But you have Stage III TERMINAL CANCER. Your LEFTIST Majority. As long as you have that the cancer is inoperable and WILL kill you.

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 9:31 PM

writing us off and letting the Marxist democrat have there way way would not just be suicidal for California, but for the entire country.

Hey… but you go ahead and believe whatever make you feel good… That is exactly how America got where it is today…

oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 9:29 PM

It’s kind of up to you to prevent the “marxist democrats from having their way” in California. There’s not much anyone else can do.

kcewa on February 20, 2014 at 9:33 PM

If you could cut off the costal communities, we would be a red state, hence the concept of the electoral college. Though even that now can’t prevent the high populous lib areas from determining an election.

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 9:23 PM

If you cut off the coastal communities, California would be an agricultural backwater — with all the water provided by the government, btw. Or are you talking bout the magnificent economic engine that is Modesto?

But you have Stage III TERMINAL CANCER. Your LEFTIST Majority. As long as you have that the cancer is inoperable and WILL kill you.

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 9:31 PM

The problem with all this is that, under Brown, the budget hasles are being resolved, pensions are being addressed, the economy is coming back, etc. It is something of a mess in many ways, but the mindless loathing of California for daring to be Californian in a little unbecoming and the predictions of doom simply stupid.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 9:36 PM

What is it with leftists and choo choo trains?

Why do they have thIs overwhelming need to build choo choo trains?

Did they not get toys to play with as children or what ?

knewshound on February 20, 2014 at 9:23 PM

They love controlling the movement of people.

kcewa on February 20, 2014 at 9:36 PM

knewshound on February 20, 2014 at 9:23 PM

iurockhead on February 20, 2014 at 9:25 PM

10. Massive spending boondoggles with colossal potential for graft.

9. Steering contracts to “friends” who will kick back money to campaign funds under the table.

8. Unions. Unions. Unions.

7. They hate automobiles.

6. They want to control where people go, and when, and keep them under surveillance en route. (“Sir, you are under arrest for possession of The Weekly Standard. Everyone else, keep reading the Utne Reader- or else.”)

5. It sound romantically “European”. (They quiver semi-orgasmically at how cosmopolitan and “French” it makes them feel.)

4. Squiring big contributors from the state capitol, to football games, etc., and back while wining and dining them- and hitting them up for money when they’re thoroughly swacked. (Works just about every time.)

3. “Making the trains run on time” makes them feel very…Italian. (Duce! Duce! Duce!)

2. When it breaks down, they can blame “Western civilization” for it.

And the most important reason;

1. Eminent domain seizure of private land for The Greater Good.

Now, do you seriously expect them not to grab hold of something like that by the throat and hang on with all their might?

If so, you simply do not understand the leftist mindset.

clear ether

eon

eon on February 20, 2014 at 9:40 PM

The problem with all this is that, under Brown, the budget hasles are being resolved, pensions are being addressed, the economy is coming back, etc. It is something of a mess in many ways, but the mindless loathing of California for daring to be Californian in a little unbecoming and the predictions of doom simply stupid.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 9:36 PM

Yes, if ‘being resolved’ is a euphemism for creative bookkeeping, then yes. Yes, a democrat, a loon democrat at that, is bringing back the economy of a state that pisses away money faster than a drunken sailor. Just like obama is. Man, you are a goddamned blind fool if I’ve ever seen one.

Lanceman on February 20, 2014 at 9:42 PM

eon on February 20, 2014 at 9:40 PM

That is what I was eluding to, and thinking. But you framed it very eloquently, and thoroughly. Well done.

iurockhead on February 20, 2014 at 9:47 PM

The problem with all this is that, under Brown, the budget hasles are being resolved, pensions are being addressed, the economy is coming back, etc. It is something of a mess in many ways, but the mindless loathing of California for daring to be Californian in a little unbecoming and the predictions of doom simply stupid.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 9:36 PM

Problem is that this is very temporary. The wealthy and productive are MOBILE. And fleeing your state as if it were Typhoid Mary.

Unless you put up walls to keep them in (which every communist nation HAS done except China) you will be in a WORSE state of deficit VERY soon than you were!

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 9:49 PM

Yes, if ‘being resolved’ is a euphemism for creative bookkeeping, then yes. Yes, a democrat, a loon democrat at that, is bringing back the economy of a state that pisses away money faster than a drunken sailor. Just like obama is. Man, you are a goddamned blind fool if I’ve ever seen one.

Lanceman on February 20, 2014 at 9:42 PM

Please. Your perceptions are so twisted by bitter loathing that if Jerry Brown (or Barack Obama, or I) said the sky was blue, you’d sneer and call us colorblind.

What is it with leftists and choo choo trains?

Why do they have thIs overwhelming need to build choo choo trains?

Did they not get toys to play with as children or what ?

knewshound on February 20, 2014 at 9:23 PM

We all traveled through Europe (or China, or Japan) on them and they were fast, convenient and economical. And there is more capacity for railroad construction than road construction or airport expansion.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 9:53 PM

Problem is that this is very temporary. The wealthy and productive are MOBILE. And fleeing your state as if it were Typhoid Mary.

Unless you put up walls to keep them in (which every communist nation HAS done except China) you will be in a WORSE state of deficit VERY soon than you were!

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 9:49 PM

Yeah, I noticed that real estate prices in Silicon Valley and San Francisco are crashing. And, interestingly, I just got a job feeler from a SoCal Fortune 500 firm. I guess they’re moving their corporate headquarters to South Carolina just yet.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 9:55 PM

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 9:36 PM

I would beg to differ, I live in the interior and we sit on the largest aquifer the world has ever seen. This is why Jerry wants the south, who through taxation and forward planing put in the infrastructure to weather the drought, to cough up our what for the north that never had the foresight to plan.

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 9:55 PM

Yeah, I noticed that real estate prices in Silicon Valley and San Francisco are crashing. And, interestingly, I just got a job feeler from a SoCal Fortune 500 firm. I guess they’re moving their corporate headquarters to South Carolina just yet.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 9:55 PM

Why is Apple not even building their US manufacturing plants in California?

They are building them in Arizona.

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 9:56 PM

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 9:56 PM

Apple hasn’t built anything in Ca, they use Nv. to get around taxation on internet and international sales, not that I blame them. Why would they build manufacturing here, but their headquarters will always be in Cupertino.

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 10:00 PM

We all traveled through Europe (or China, or Japan) on them and they were fast, convenient and economical. And there is more capacity for railroad construction than road construction or airport expansion.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 9:53 PM

That particular statement tells me all I need to know about what you are. I do hope you are one of the rank & file and not someone in the power structure. Sadly, we’ll never know.

Lanceman on February 20, 2014 at 10:00 PM

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 9:53 PM

but not cost efficiency our profitability, nor time of travel… try again to bring back the buggy whip.

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 10:03 PM

We all traveled through Europe (or China, or Japan) on them and they were fast, convenient and economical. And there is more capacity for railroad construction than road construction or airport expansion.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 9:53 PM

That particular statement tells me all I need to know about what you are. I do hope you are one of the rank & file and not someone in the power structure. Sadly, we’ll never know.

Lanceman on February 20, 2014 at 10:00 PM

Yep. I’m someone who took the TGV through France. Also someone who has traveled the Northeast Corridor by car, plane, train bus and thumb. I’m sure having actual experience with a variety of inter-urban transportation modes makes my opinion suspect, I’m just wondering, how.

And, you’re from where?

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:05 PM

Even Germany valued Freedom more than the American left.

The Autobahn

(A pioneering Synth tune from 1974)

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 10:08 PM

but not cost efficiency our profitability, nor time of travel… try again to bring back the buggy whip.

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 10:03 PM

That changes over the long term as certain corridors become even more ridiculously crowded. Digging a decent tunnel under New York, btw, would also be a huge benefit to (efficient and profitable) commercial rail shipping.

You have to dodge a lot of politics — a high speed northeast line shouldn’t stop in Baltimore, Wilmington, Newark or (maybe) Philly on its way to New York, and a downtown-to-downtown 90-minute ride would be faster than the Delta shuttle.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:10 PM

But the lieutenant governor, a rising star in the party, is also transparently aligning himself with public opinion.

As radical as it might sound, he might actually be aligning himself with his own opinion.

IndieDogg on February 20, 2014 at 10:11 PM

That changes over the long term as certain corridors become even more ridiculously crowded. Digging a decent tunnel under New York, btw, would also be a huge benefit to (efficient and profitable) commercial rail shipping.

You have to dodge a lot of politics — a high speed northeast line shouldn’t stop in Baltimore, Wilmington, Newark or (maybe) Philly on its way to New York, and a downtown-to-downtown 90-minute ride would be faster than the Delta shuttle.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:10 PM

I choose to not live like a RAT in a Democrat Urban Maze.

Kentucky is HEAVEN compared to New York City.
(PS we were the FIRST state called against your Emperor in BOTH 2008 and 2012)

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 10:11 PM

Even Germany valued Freedom more than the American left.

The Autobahn

(A pioneering Synth tune from 1974)

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 10:08 PM

Dumb comment. Great song.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:13 PM

Yep. I’m someone who took the TGV through France. Also someone who has traveled the Northeast Corridor by car, plane, train bus and thumb. I’m sure having actual experience with a variety of inter-urban transportation modes makes my opinion suspect, I’m just wondering, how.

And, you’re from where?

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:05 PM

I’ve known several ‘urban outdoorsmen’ who’ve done the same.

I used to think your moniker was just a play on words. I can see it’s quite apt.

It makes little difference where I’m from or where I’ve been. As I’ve told the professor and others, one of the easiest things to do is represent yourself as anything you like from behind a keyboard. I can only repeat that my hope is you are part of the rank & file, and once again, we will never know.

Lanceman on February 20, 2014 at 10:13 PM

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:05 PM

http://www.the-american-interest.com/blog/2013/01/28/rail-friendly-france-turning-its-back-on-tgv/

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 10:14 PM

We need to sh!tcan this bullet train to nowhere like yesterday.We are suffering the worst drought of our lifetime and Moonbeam’s idiotic Choo-Choo needs to be buried 100 miles under.Gavin Nuisance as Governor?Hell I would rather have Abortion Barbie, she ain’t a bad looking broad anyway.

jeffinsjvca on February 20, 2014 at 10:21 PM

We need to sh!tcan this bullet train to nowhere like yesterday.We are suffering the worst drought of our lifetime and Moonbeam’s idiotic Choo-Choo needs to be buried 100 miles under.Gavin Nuisance as Governor?Hell I would rather have Abortion Barbie, she ain’t a bad looking broad anyway.

jeffinsjvca on February 20, 2014 at 10:21 PM

Actually, better you than me. Unfortunately, my congressman, John Mica, is the Floridian king of transportation boondoggles. But for the prevailing cool head of Governor Scott, we would have had all that wonderful ‘federal’ money for HS rail.

Along with the cost overruns amounting to at least double whatever monies we would have received from Washington.

But don’t worry. Jerry Brown will fix your economy. Man, I’d hate to have to pay your taxes.

Lanceman on February 20, 2014 at 10:26 PM

I choose to not live like a RAT in a Democrat Urban Maze.

Kentucky is HEAVEN compared to New York City.
(PS we were the FIRST state called against your Emperor in BOTH 2008 and 2012)

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 10:11 PM

Kentucky? (as long as were getting all stereotype-y) it’s like a third world country. It’s the South Bronx with white people, meth and coal mines instead of minorities, junk and janitor jobs.

(But, we could go beyond stereotypes, no?)

one of the easiest things to do is represent yourself as anything you like from behind a keyboard.

We agree on something. I think I keep my claims minimal and consistent (and real, but, as you say).

I can only repeat that my hope is you are part of the rank & file, and once again, we will never know

.

If Washington were Nashville and politics were music, I would be a competent and employed session guy, so no worry about me making policy at high levels.

I used to think your moniker was just a play on words. I can see it’s quite apt.

It makes little difference where I’m from or where I’ve been. As I’ve told the professor and others, one of the easiest things to do is represent yourself as anything you like from behind a keyboard.

Lanceman on February 20, 2014 at 10:13 PM

Despite my tit-for-tat with the Pope (a rural elitist, apparently) up top, my inquiry wasn’t so much to sneer at your residence, but to suggest that if you deal with the realities of urban corridor transport on a regular basis, and have actual experience with it, you perhaps see bring a more realistic eye to the bullet train proposal than somebody who is disinclined politically and ideologically to support it in the first place and has little firsthand acquaintance with the problem the trains are meant to ameliorate.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:35 PM

Kentucky? (as long as were getting all stereotype-y) it’s like a third world country. It’s the South Bronx with white people, meth and coal mines instead of minorities, junk and janitor jobs.

(But, we could go beyond stereotypes, no?)

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:35 PM

We will still be a polite and civilized society LONG after the rats have eaten New York City.

You can also go to my birth city’s “Central Park” at night and be SAFE.

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 10:39 PM

http://www.the-american-interest.com/blog/2013/01/28/rail-friendly-france-turning-its-back-on-tgv/

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 10:14 PM

This doesn’t say that high speed trains are uneconomical. It says that some high speed lines are uneconomical and that lines shouldn’t be built for political reasons. I agree.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:39 PM

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:35 PM

Matters not where I live. But it should be obvious. Floridians are not going to use a bullet train any more than Californians. It’s a waste of money. You know, like Amtrack.

Americans value their mobile freedom and don’t take kindly to herding themselves into boxcars like cattle. I have yet to see a major metropolitan bus system make money. Tri-Met Max in Portland. Genius idea, there.

Lanceman on February 20, 2014 at 10:40 PM

We will still be a polite and civilized society LONG after the rats have eaten New York City.

You can also go to my birth city’s “Central Park” at night and be SAFE.

ConstantineXI on February 20, 2014 at 10:39 PM

Have a nice time walking in the park after midnight (which you can do in New York these days, btw). I’ll be on the coast, making money, going to the shows and eating excellent Thai carry-out.

Variety — it’s good, right?

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:45 PM

This doesn’t say that high speed trains are uneconomical. It says that some high speed lines are uneconomical and that lines shouldn’t be built for political reasons. I agree.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:39 PM

Rail is a veritable feast, and in most cases has become obsolete as a form of moving people and keeping the costs under control. It is great for moving freight, but the days of transport of people are gone.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/timothylee/2012/06/03/infrastructure-socialism-and-the-new-york-subway/

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 10:50 PM

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:39 PM

unless you are Mussolini… oops, maybe not http://www.snopes.com/history/govern/trains.asp

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 10:52 PM

Matters not where I live. But it should be obvious. Floridians are not going to use a bullet train any more than Californians. It’s a waste of money. You know, like Amtrack.

Americans value their mobile freedom and don’t take kindly to herding themselves into boxcars like cattle. I have yet to see a major metropolitan bus system make money. Tri-Met Max in Portland. Genius idea, there.

Lanceman on February 20, 2014 at 10:40 PM

That’s just a dumb argument. People will make rational choices — Floridians, Californians (have you driven in California? It’s often a very unpleasant experience). If an reasonable alternative to driving is available, they will take it (and, yes, I realize that “reasonable” is the key word here). Hell, everyone in those states is from somewhere else anyway. Or, are you saying they’re too stupid to try alternatives? Sunbeltist!

The last part of your argument is where you just sound dumb. Providing another transportation choice is hardly “herding people into boxcars like cattle.” Has GM rented space in your brain. Being against the bullet train on economic grounds is reasonable. Being against it because it’s some plot by leftists to take away your freedom is simple moronic. We do own cars, to, you know.

By the way, have you ever been on the Jersey Turnpike during the workday, or I-95 between DC and Richmond almost anytime? “Mobile Freedom” is not a phrase a rational individual stuck in that traffic would invoke.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:53 PM

Rail is a veritable feast, and in most cases has become obsolete as a form of moving people and keeping the costs under control. It is great for moving freight, but the days of transport of people are gone.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/timothylee/2012/06/03/infrastructure-socialism-and-the-new-york-subway/

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 10:50 PM

the Forbes article raises some cocktail-party level points of interest — fine for a columnist. But the idea that the days of public rail are over is not seriously discussed in the article and is laughable on its face.

And, given a growing population, increased mobility, finite land and the economic advantages of urban arrangements, how do you propose to move people from city to city?

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:58 PM

Urban you’re a statist. What a loser.

CWchangedhisNicagain on February 20, 2014 at 11:02 PM

So many fools and Urban is king.

An old adage cautions, “If something seems too good to be true, it probably is.” Such is the case with the now-famous “California Comeback.”
Faced with a large budget deficit, California passed tax increases on the wealthy, balanced the budget, generated a surplus of more than a billion dollars, and seemingly solved its fiscal woes. But a closer look reveals this to be more hype than reality.
For example, in its budget calculations, California does not include the state’s unfunded pension liability — about $1 trillion. If California used the accounting standards private companies must use and factored in this debt, it would not appear to be in such good shape.
Another main driver of the supposed California surplus is the 50 percent increase in personal-income-tax revenues from 2012. The state used these increased revenues as the baseline for its calculations, but its tax receipts will probably fall soon, for several reasons.
- See more at: http://rare.us/story/the-myth-of-the-california-budget-surplus/#sthash.quUsB4zX.dpuf

Urban you’re a hack.

CWchangedhisNicagain on February 20, 2014 at 11:05 PM

Urban one day you will grow up. Be a man. Embarrassing.

CWchangedhisNicagain on February 20, 2014 at 11:06 PM

$68,000,000,000 seems like a small price to pay…
Fresno to Madera at 35mph! Chugga-chugga choo-chooooo!
Who doesn’t like trains? TEABAGGERZ DUH!

Kenosha Kid on February 20, 2014 at 11:07 PM

$68 BILLION?

Fed prints it once a month, what’s the hang up?

riddick on February 20, 2014 at 11:14 PM

Only a complete idiot ever thought the project practical.

Adjoran on February 20, 2014 at 11:35 PM

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:53 PM

Moronic observations that clearly point out how little you know about California. Or I95 in NJ.

It takes me a bit more than 4 hours to drive from East Bay to LA West Side (Santa Monica). Let’s say, 4.5 hours. Done it who knows how many times, on business, with multiple wine cases in trunk as samples and deliveries.

It would take me roughly 30 minutes to get to the a train station, BY CAR, and then make me worry about parking the car in safety and at cost when I come back from LA. Never mind the wine cases I need to move to the train (or some other “inventory”). So, say 1 hour total when it is all said and done for me to get on the train. Before the train even got moving. Then train has to travel SLOWLY while still in Bay Area, for obvious reasons. By the time the train makes it out of Bay Area, say 2 hours, I am at half the distance from LA in my car.

Train then travels 2 hours to Fresno, if that is even doable and with no other stop in between. My car is now entering LA roads and on the way to West Side.

The train then makes stop(s) from Fresno on the way to Bakersfield, say another hour of slow speed since it can’t really attain high speed due to stops it has to make. I am now walking to my first retail account with samples in hand and doing business.

The train may be leaving Bakersfield now, 4-5 hours after it started in Bay Area , and heading to LA DOWNTOWN train station. I am now on second or maybe third retail account stop.

“Speed” train now pulls into LA train station. I am now on my 4th account and ready to head out to nice dinner having finished my business for the day. Had I taken the train I would now be looking to rent a car and move my wine cases from train to rental car. Another 45 minutes at the minimum?

And I am FORCED to do my business NEXT DAY for obvious reasons that I sent most of the day on the train.

Now, explain to me, someone who has done plenty of business in CA, up and down the coast, why would anyone SANE even contemplate SUCH STUPIDITY as “speed train” when it offers NOTHING I want? And all of the extra costs and inconveniences, and nothing more than that, at STUPENDOUS cost to tax payers and those who have lost their family lands to this IDIOCY already?

I once took Boston to NYC “speed” train, and paid almost double for the ticket. Got there, “speed train” and all, maybe 15 minutes faster than regular train due to all of the stops it had to make. Hoped for and advertised speeds were never even approached. Only someone really delusional can ever think that CA speed train will start in Bay Area and head straight to LA, non stop and at full advertised speed.

You’re really, REALLY stupid, if you still believe in this idiotic idea. Learn a bit more about CA and NJ before you use as them “proof” again.

riddick on February 20, 2014 at 11:36 PM

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:58 PM

Yes, Amtrak is soooooo profitable!

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 11:48 PM

And, given a growing population, increased mobility, finite land and the economic advantages of urban arrangements, how do you propose to move people from city to city?

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:58 PM

Yes for you and the rest of the elitists, it probably is cocktail party banter, as you whine and complain of the unwashed masses on your air travel or other forms of transport, and wish them cast down to sh!tty forms of transport such as trains and subways.

uncommon sense on February 20, 2014 at 11:52 PM

LA is considering a Carbon Tax on gasoline, and the county of Los Angeles is considering a county wide income tax.

Kjeil on February 21, 2014 at 12:13 AM

how do you propose to move people from city to city?

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:58 PM

Their adoring fans will carry them.

Kenosha Kid on February 21, 2014 at 12:35 AM

The Trans Continental Railroad was almost 4x as long, took half the time, and cost about 2.5% of the cost of this boondoggle.

You can’t fix stupid!

Patriot Vet on February 21, 2014 at 5:36 AM

And, given a growing population, increased mobility, finite land and the economic advantages of urban arrangements, how do you propose to move people from city to city?

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:58 PM

By the horseless carriage, I.e. the car.

If you’re talking over great distances, then by plane. It will be cheaper, or as expensive as taking this POS. But then you have the maintained and upkeep that the state will have to do for the new rail, and that will cost quite a bit and strap the already strapped CA even more. Not a smart decision on the Liberal masses in control.

Patriot Vet on February 21, 2014 at 5:46 AM

I lived in the San Diego area for six years. It was a beautiful state back then, but I left partly because of the taxes … and I was beginning to develop the valley dude accent.

Jumped from the frying pan into the fire tax-wise by moving to Liberal LaLa Land People’s Republic of Minnesota (family is here), esteemed Whiny Boy Dayton governor. (Ed – My favorite radio station – “The Patriot”).

I’m watching for “The Big One” but hope my relatives are out of there before it happens. As a friend once said, “They ought to dig around California and send it floating over to China.”

wutzupdak on February 21, 2014 at 8:09 AM

That’s just a dumb argument. People will make rational choices — Floridians, Californians (have you driven in California? It’s often a very unpleasant experience). If an reasonable alternative to driving is available, they will take it (and, yes, I realize that “reasonable” is the key word here). Hell, everyone in those states is from somewhere else anyway. Or, are you saying they’re too stupid to try alternatives? Sunbeltist!

The last part of your argument is where you just sound dumb. Providing another transportation choice is hardly “herding people into boxcars like cattle.” Has GM rented space in your brain. Being against the bullet train on economic grounds is reasonable. Being against it because it’s some plot by leftists to take away your freedom is simple moronic. We do own cars, to, you know.

By the way, have you ever been on the Jersey Turnpike during the workday, or I-95 between DC and Richmond almost anytime? “Mobile Freedom” is not a phrase a rational individual stuck in that traffic would invoke.

urban elitist on February 20, 2014 at 10:53 PM

Yes, everything to you is either a dumb comment or a dumb argument. California’s roads are what they are because of what the people you vote for have made of them. I’ve driven in every one of the contiguous states.

You, as a useful idiot always like to dismiss any claim concerning leftism as a plot or tinfoil hat moment.

Americans, when confronted with a choice, do not give up their cars, traffic or not. Of course, the California roads and their state of disrepair eventually will leave them with no choice.

I don’t feel sorry for them, however, because they insist on voting for the Jerry Browns and every other ‘rat that comes down the pike expecting the next one to finally get ‘it’ right’.

Lanceman on February 21, 2014 at 10:13 AM

LA is considering a Carbon Tax on gasoline, and the county of Los Angeles is considering a county wide income tax.

Kjeil on February 21, 2014 at 12:13 AM

Will they use that tax to repair the roads? Nah! It’ll go to shore up California’s unfunded liabilities. Or they’ll have rosy projections on paper and spend it on useless crap before it’s even collected.

Lanceman on February 21, 2014 at 10:16 AM

Moonbeam and the male model. All we got in CA. Sucks.

StevC on February 21, 2014 at 11:47 AM

I guess that one of the qualifications to advance to national office in the Democrat party is that you must waste over $50 Billion at the state level to prove that you’re qualified for federal-level fiscal incompetence.

landlines on February 21, 2014 at 12:28 PM

“Any twosome” Newsom. Erika, to say that he is “not wrong” about this sidesteps the real point. A bit of truth can be found right here:

“We don’t have the federal dollars that we were hoping for—only about $3 billion has come forward. The private sector hasn’t stepped up,” the lieutenant governor noted. …

Just like the constituents for whom he cares not a whit, he expects anyone else to pay for what he wants, even if those who are expected to pay don’t agree. His statement is, of course, about “appearing” to be the reasonable politician in Sacramento, but it goes not one inch beyond appearance.

It isn’t that he opposes this state albatross, it’s that he can use its current woeful condition to position himself for a promotion. Once elected to the Statehouse, he’ll pull a tighter 180 than Shaun White ever dreamed of, and demand all possible funding be directed at the HSR project. And he’ll do that so that he can then whine about how there is no money for the schools and fire stations, meaning new taxes.

Do you think any of these bloodsuckers is different from any of the rest of them?

Freelancer on February 21, 2014 at 8:00 PM

Gavin Newsom is an oily rat who will say anything to get elected. Although Brown and his party are stupid enough to spend billions on the railroad-to-nowhere, Newsom will spend the same on socialism-by-any-means-necessary.

Democrats will remind you that this measure, along with the other global-warming and stem-cell reseach boondoggles, was aproved by voters but then they’ll leave out the gay-marriage propositions that they shopped judges to overturn. Tyrants, every one.

This is a false-choice for Californians. None-of-the-above makes much more sense. Even California can have too much liberal mayhem.

virgo on February 22, 2014 at 12:16 AM

California is not America’s Greece. It is suffering a very serious viral infection of liberal/Marxist stupid, but is a long ways yet from terminal.
oscarwilde on February 20, 2014 at 8:58 PM

True, it’s not “our” Greece. If it goes bankrupt, that’s THEIR problem; the rest of US (U.S.) are not on the hook for their debits. (Let’s hope they hold off long enough that The Great and Powerful O doesn’t just co-sign their debits with our credit. What’s left of it.)

Oh, and (obligatory): Once the railroad is finished, it’ll be terminal twice.
One terminal in California, the other in Nevada…

ReggieA on February 22, 2014 at 12:45 AM