End of the line: A high-speed train wreck
In case you didn't get the news that the Obama administration has pulled the brake cord on a high-speed train to Las Vegas, don't feel left out. Congress reportedly didn't get the word until after the federal Department of Transportation informed XpressWest in June that it was indefinitely suspending the agency's $5.5 billion federal loan application.
It was all very hush-hush, according to The Heritage Foundation. That is, after analysis revealed how taxpayers would get railroaded by this boondoggle, which was supposed to run from Victorville, Calif., to Las Vegas.
This ridiculous proposal was premised on the assumption that people would drive an hour and a half (or longer) from Los Angeles or other metropolitan areas to Victorville. An analysis by Wendell Cox for the Reason Foundation estimated that the train's ridership and revenue would be about two-thirds less than proponents' projections.
And if XpressWest defaulted on the loan, taxpayers would be on the hook for a proposal long on hyperbole — but precariously short on any real-world practicality.
Did we mention that this express through taxpayers' pockets was supported by Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev.?
If these overly expensive, subsidy-dependent, high-speed rail extravaganzas are all that advocates claim, they would attract private investors. Instead, they're pitched primarily by fact-challenged proponents and politicians, who ever-so-quietly catch the first train out of town when the folly of their invention is exposed.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pittsburgh Laurels & Lances
- Greensburg Laurels & Lances
- For U.S. House, Pa.: Re-elect Rothfus, Shuster, Kelly & Barletta
- Alle-Kiski Laurels & Lances
- Monsour’s legacy: A bitter pill
- For the Pennsylvania House: Ortitay, Krieger and Logan
- For U.S. Senate, W.Va.: Elect Shelley Moore Capito
- U.N. Watch: Gun-grabbers unite!
- Early voting: Hardly healthy
- The Paycheck Fairness Act: It’s not needed
- Alle-Kiski Laurels & Lances