High speed rail.
It’s got a romantic vibe. You think of a sleek, bullet-nosed slab of steel flying along at unimaginable speeds. Inside, passengers lounge in plush chairs, sipping cocktails, clacking away at laptops and iPads, reading a trusty Kindle. No pesky traffic jams, no worries about the cost of fuel, no-stress travel.
Just leave the driving to … the state.
President Obama, not surprisingly, wants to spend, excuse me, invest, 53 billion tax dollars—that’s money you and I have earned through very hard work—in high-speed rail.
Not surprising because liberals-socialists-progressives-statists have always had a love affair with trains. It’s a great way of maintaining control over unruly, freedom loving citizens.
Railroads are a perfect expression of the utopian collective favored by the left. This, in contrast to the individual who prefers making his own way, in his own vehicle, by his own route.
The ultimate expression of a state’s love affair with the railroad was, of course, the cattle cars used by the Nazis, The National Socialist Party, to ship millions of Jews to death camps.
Relax, I’m not saying that Obama is a Nazi.
I am pointing out that there is a pronounced tendency among big government advocates to favor railroads as a natural extention of their power.
Take away a citizen’s car and you make him dependant on the state for his mobility.
Liberals dress it up as a means of creating jobs and building infrastructure, but governments do not create jobs, they create ill-tempered clerks. And if government wants to help build infrastructure why not improve existing city bus lines? And hey, I’ve got pot holes on my block that are deep as the pits of hell.
Let’s be clear, government “jobs” are created through the imposition of high and ever higher taxes.
This is fiscal insanity.
Obama claims that America is falling behind Japan because they have really great high-speed rail lines. What Obama didn’t mention is that all the profitable high speed rail lines in Japan are privately owned. The state-owned lines, what a shock, lose 50 million a day.
Has Obama ever heard of Amtrak?
Government owned and run.
It leaks money like a sieve.
According to Julie Borowski of Freedom Works:
In fact, Amtrak actually loses money on 41 out of 44 of their train routes. Taxpayers are forced to pay $32 per Amtrak passenger to make up for these losses. Even still, riders often complain about spotty Amtrak service and frequent delays.
Look, if the American consumer wanted high-speed rail, private industry would build it. That’s how our great railroads were originally built, by the private sector, capitalist visionaries.
Obama, like most democrats-liberals-progressives—whatever they’re calling themselves this week—have unlimited faith in an unlimited government.
Conservatives believe in a limited government that unleashes the power of individual enterprise.
History shows, time and again, that the nanny state is, ultimately, dedicated to maintaining its own power at the expense of its citizenry. And what better expression of power than nice neat lines of steel bisecting the landscape carrying hordes of compliant citizens to destinations chosen and approved by government bureaucrats—who cruise around in limousines.