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08:20 PM on 04/11/2009
Could it be the same reason trillions are leaving the treasury, with little delay?
08:28 AM on 04/12/2009
Small-minded thinking and ignorance of the big picture are common threads...
12:25 PM on 04/12/2009
Right, you gotta think big like AIG.
05:27 PM on 04/11/2009
If it could be done profitably, a high speed rail system would already be in place.
BTW the gov does not create profits they spend your profits.
07:16 AM on 04/12/2009
I say we should shut down all water, sewer, police and fire departments that are not showing sustainable profits.
07:21 AM on 04/12/2009
Water and sewer are mostly profitable
police and fire are community service

Traveling by high speed rail is neither
04:36 PM on 04/11/2009
Americans love their cars, and it will take a lot more than 4.00 a gallon gas to give them up.
01:32 AM on 04/12/2009
Yes and also the auto industry and big oil have done everything in their power to prevent any major development in mass transportation from cutting into their revenue, especially the oil industry. The airlines have also lobbied against it in the past. The US is way behind all other major Western powers, China and Japan with high speed rail.
Citizens, Unite!
11:37 PM on 04/12/2009
Americans love whores too, but we outlaw prostitution.
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11:43 PM on 04/12/2009
The Republicans are scowling so hard, I could HEAR their brows furrow. Good one!
Rush Geek
04:31 PM on 04/11/2009
Amtrak has lost money every year for as long as I can remember and they have to be subsidized by the government.

What makes anyone think that a new "high speed" rail system will be nothing more than a money pit?

As much as Obama wants us to be like Europe, we are not.
10:47 PM on 04/11/2009
why do people always point out that amtrak is subsidized without taking a look at why automobiles are the dominant form of transportation?

who pays to build and fix the roads and highways that cars use? how is that not a subsidy?

speaking of money pits, how much does GM want again?
01:40 AM on 04/12/2009
Nope, we're not like Europe, we're becoming more like India. Keep it up and we'll be competing with third world countries with their millions of illiterate, their broken infrastructure and lack of mass transportation. Great countries have great rail systems not the other way around. The US used to be in the lead, now we're way behind. We don't even use rail all that much to move freight: the vast majority of freight is moved by truck according to a very recent statistic. Instead of heading into the 21st century, we're headed back to the 18th century.

High speed rail between city centers which are less than 500 miles apart is far more efficient, comfortable and convenient than flying especially in today's world when you have to be at an airport 90 minutes in advance. Maybe for rural folk it makes no sense but the vast majority of American live in urban areas which have heavy traffic and where good public transportation would make excellent economic sense. It's also very good for the environment. BTW, ridership is still way way up for most mass transportation systems even though gas prices have fallen since last summer.
07:45 AM on 04/12/2009
India has a much better passenger rail system than we do.
02:20 PM on 04/11/2009
12:04 PM on 04/11/2009
A ridiculously low gasoline tax. Last year when gasoline reached $4 per gallon, usage declined but only modestly. Our country easily could afford $4 gasoline, and the difference between pump price and underlying cost could be used to build mass transit. Unfortunately, our politicians have so little courage.
07:14 AM on 04/11/2009
To words "General Motors"
02:31 AM on 04/11/2009
Trains are the best way to travel in China, Russia, Europe. However, high speed rail does not make economic sense here now. In Orlando, the city government has pushed for huge expenditures for local rail. They wanted to spend $600 million to build a light rail between down town and Disneyworld. That way the tourists could commute to the Downtown office jobs and the downtown office workers could commute home to Disneyworld. In other words, nobody would use it.

Everyone knew it was a ridiculous proposition but the city pushed for it (including a shady midnight vote). Why? Because politicians in Orlando were owned by businesses who would have gotten $600 million. Florida has not changed.
01:25 AM on 04/11/2009
Eventually, Americans will be forced to "live off the land" as their ancestors did (because there will soon come a time when the American population will have to be drastically reduced!). We won't need 'high speed rail' then-- we'll need to learn how to plant crops in poor soil and potentially toxic "fertilizers"!
10:26 PM on 04/10/2009
Two major issues keep America from enjoying the benefits of high-speed rail travel (other than the vested interests to keep us in a car or on an airplane).

#1. When the railroads switched away from steam power they were sold a bill of goods by GM and other diesel-electric locomotive manufacturers. Therefore, they didn't electrify the system and have been sucking the oil teat since. While diesel-electric is fine for heavy freight hauling, high-speed rail travel is much more difficult and expensive to realize when you are getting your power from similar large, heavy diesel-electric generators (to say nothing of the fuel load they have to carry). The only major corridor that is electrified is the Boston - Washington D.C. corridor and that has to share with freight traffic. (Which brings me to #2.)

#2. Passenger rail travel is stuck sharing the rails with freight traffic which often gets top priority because... the freight haulers own the rail right-of-way.

I'm not sure when the people are going to wake up and realize that it will not be too long before it will be too expensive for the common man to fly anyplace and driving will also be out of the question because of the cost of oil.

Sadly, our elected officials do not have the backbone to make the hard decisions needed now to insure that we have a high-speed rail travel option in the future.
01:22 AM on 04/11/2009
In other words... the US railway system is halfway stuck in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
02:15 PM on 04/11/2009
I am really surprised that the article does not make more of the fact that CSX runs the rails. That's the real reason why we can't get faster trains in places like the northeast corridor where rail travel is pretty necessary and high speed rail would be most useful.
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07:51 PM on 04/10/2009
Anyone who has traveled abroad on rails knows just how inexpensive and efficient they can be.
10:36 AM on 04/12/2009
When I went to Japan I was amazed. I could walk 15 minutes to the nearest station, hop on and travel to dozens of cities and town. It was cheap, fast and fun.
12:34 PM on 04/12/2009
Oddly enough, Japan is much much smaller than the US, has a long narrow shape, many large cities in relatively close proximity, and well, thats just perfect for rail.

US... not so much...

You keep trying to fit that square peg in the round hole though...
07:43 PM on 04/10/2009
My bicycle and I can travel over 200 mph.
07:19 AM on 04/12/2009
Relative to what?
07:37 PM on 04/10/2009
High Speed Rail is the future we could have a MONORAIL with MAG LEV that nevers touches anything well how about current technology and regular tracks?

The Federal Reserve Bank.

What is the Fed?

For starters, it's neither "federal"
nor a "reserve" nor a "bank."

What is it then?

The answer may surprise you:
07:19 PM on 04/10/2009
One word: OIL
08:11 PM on 04/10/2009
No, lack of funding and a plethora of projects that can have more of a positive impact. Such as alternative engergy and repairing existing infrastructure. There is a limited amount of funding available and an ulimited thirst to spend it.

Maybe in the future but not right now.
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09:20 PM on 04/10/2009
Why float when you can drive? It's a manifestation that we basically can't stand each other. I don't mind so much as I now understand that most on this site are ok, but the majority of the people in this country prefer to clothe themselves in the short brown velvet of ignorance and intolerance. I'll argue change to my last dying breath, or until...
06:16 PM on 04/10/2009
Whats keeping the US from High Speed Rail?

Simple. 3.6 million square miles of land to cover.
01:43 AM on 04/12/2009
Yet the Russians and Chinese are doing it. So we're now going to be second best to them. Great!
07:21 AM on 04/12/2009
Shocking ignorance