When Amtrak was formed in 1970, Congressman promised that it
would be profitable in three years.
When Amtrak was formed in 1970, Congressman promised that it would be profitable in three years.
Well, after 33 years, taxpayers have paid $31 billion in subsidies. As Traffic World reported, that is a stack of $100 bills higher than the World Trade Center stood. Supporters of the Bullet-in-the-Brain train will make profit building and operating it, just as VTA does operating Black Hole Lite Rail. However, taxpayers will be the losers.
The galley slaves will need to quicken their strokes so that the recipients of their labors will enjoy their rides. Will Rod Diridon be successful in converting us to a socialist society, living in concrete high-rise Dirodonominiums like the USSR’s “affordable housing”?
Until Rod was appointed to HSRA, they had projected a $900 million annual operating loss (truth probably doubles their estimate), but now they project a profitable operation. “Profitable” in the same definition of VTA’s “profit.” I do not swallow this big lie. Do you?
As with Caltrain, Lite Rail and Amtrak, taxicabs and limousines would be cheaper for the taxpayers. But have we learned anything from the history of the last century? If we defeated the USSR, then why are we adopting their philosophy?
I appeared before the High Speed Rail Commission (before it became an “authority”) five times and told the commissioners that if they put enough Fedex, UPS, and Postal Service tonnage on their train, then they would not need to ask taxpayers for a dime.
Instead of following a capitalist model, they insist (with Bechtel Corporation’s – the builders support) that California must have a Soviet-style horizontal elevator. Well, if voters believe that, then they deserve to wear this albatross around their necks.
But ask yourselves, do our children and grandchildren deserve the consequences of our compulsive spending disorder? Are we building the future for them, or welcoming a monster Trojan Horse? Caveat viator.
Joseph P. Thompson, Gilroy
Submitted Tuesday, Feb. 3 to [email protected]