Commentary: Amtrak, Feeding the Dead Horse
Lefty demands you fund and live his lifestyle. Following an Amtrak accident caused by ridiculously excessive speed the handful of swells who actually take the train between Boston and Washington are demanding it needs more money. When you consider the death toll earlier this week could have been much higher if more than a fraction of a percent of the population actually used Amtrak it’s a strange argument. If I’m driving down the highway and a fellow passes me driving at 130 miles per hour and then a mile ahead he misses a curve and wraps himself around a tree I don’t blame it on highway maintenance. There is also another argument against funding a proverbial dead-horse. As you can see in this link Amtrak is a black hole. The 40 billion dollars lost (and I assume it’s a conservative estimate) could have gone for far more pressing needs. How many children could get schooled for the same amount? How many veterans cared for at hospitals? How many posts planted along a border security fence? This is analogous to feeding a horse that died 44 years ago. Every morning the farmer walks up to the skeletal remains and pours feed over the bones. Eventually in hopes of reviving the dead animal he doubles the amount of oats.
The debate over this inept rail system is getting a tad nasty as you can see from the MSDNC video provided here by Real Clear Politics. Ed Rendell, a horse’s ass and former Pennsylvania Governor and employee of the liberal network is trotted out to call the logical opponents sons-of-bitches. Ah, yes! Lefty is erudite, isn’t he? If you can’t offer your own logical reason for more waste then start calling people names.
How could Amtrak become profitable? I suppose you could impose a totalitarian state and seize American’s cars and trucks and force them to take the train. Isn’t that what Lefty really dreams about? When I lived in Delaware the state’s congressional delegation took the choo-choo from Wilmington (where they all lived nearby) to Washington for business. Joe Biden started the effort in the early 70s in hopes of encouraging by example. The state’s two current Senators also ride the rails but clearly their choo-choo leadership has failed. Yet they still take the short ride to and from work. I’ll wager the line is kept in great shape from the tiny northern corner of Delaware the Amtrak line crosses before reaching Washington. It sure doesn’t match my Amtrak experience, which involved stopping every 20 minutes and waiting 45 minutes for track maintenance. Forty billion dollars and on one trip when the train arrived 90 minutes late I spent 4 hours getting to a destination I could’ve reached in two hours by car. Being captive on the train for much of the day leaves a guy hungry. I went to something called a dining car. No tables but a counter and a man behind it with a microwave oven. I ordered a highly overpriced slice of pizza. He pulled a piece of frozen bread smeared with a thin layer of red and some flecks of cheese and popped it into a microwave oven. Then he took my money and handed me something akin to the texture on the bottom of my wing tips.
This is the future Lefty has in mind for the rest of us, along with cinder block high rises, recycled toilet paper with the texture of sandpaper and long, long Soviet style lines for any goods we need. They call themselves progressives but I see no progress. They claim they want fairness and apparently fair means equality in sub-standard service. This is the dystopian future of mankind and it’s to be administered by the crude likes of Ed Rendell.