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Obama wants to build a nationwide light rail system

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posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:12 PM
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I just heard on the radio that Obama said he wants to build a nationwide light rail system. He said it was to alleviate congestion on the highways and because they have them in Europe and Asia. Guess we have to keep up with the Jones and the Chungs


I could see building one of these in highly populated areas like the East and West Coast, if it were done with private money. But how many people are going to ride a national light rail system? I dont know if he has heard yet, but they invented this thing called a plane a few years back. Also, if people did use this wouldnt if further devistate the Airlines. Is that good for the country?

Does he not understand that we dont have any money?




posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:19 PM
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www.freep.com...
Obama: Put Detroit on track for high-speed rail
Federal grants may help provide more transportation option



WASHINGTON – A high-speed rail corridor through the industrial Midwest – linking Toledo, Detroit, Chicago and more – is one of the potential recipients of billions of dollars in funding in federal grants announced Thursday morning by President Barack Obama. Speaking in Washington before departing on a trip to Mexico, Obama said the U.S. is putting itself at a competitive disadvantage by not embracing the potential of high speed rail to link parts of the nation, saying France, China and other countries are already ahead of us. He pledged $8 billion in funds from the stimulus bill passed by Congress this year and another $1 billion a year for five years. “I know Americans love their cars and no one’s talking about replacing the automobile,” said Obama “But this is something that can be done.”


I just finished reading this article when I saw your post. What about the auto industry as well as the airlines? I think it's an alternative, but at what cost? Yeah, it will bring jobs, but who wants to come to a city that is broke with businesses closing every day? And Detroit? Hmmm...


+8 more 
posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:19 PM
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I'm not a huge obama fan, but you all are in such a hurry to bash him that you are overlooking his good ideas.

Today's rail tech is more more economical and efficient, not to mention green, than an time in history. A rail system like this would revolutionize the shipping industry, as semi truck would no longer have to be the main source of shipping.

Auto factories could easily be retrofitted to produce trains, rails and equipment, and the maintenance on such rails is minimal.

Thousands of jobs would be created, it would cut pollution, traffic, and the cost of road maintanance, and would streamline the shipping industry.

Where the downfall? Because it would cost money to start up? Sorry friend, but to stimulate an economy, you HAVE to put money into it.



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:21 PM
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reply to post by virraszto
 


Personally, I dont think most people would even use it. How many people ride Amtrak outside the NorthEast corridor? We are different than Europe and Asia. Almost everyone in the US has a car, and we are all control freaks so we want to travel how and when we want, and there is a fair amount of the US that is not heavily populated.



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:23 PM
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reply to post by cautiouslypessimistic
 


I wasn't bashing Obama. I just don't know where I stand on this. I didn't think of it in terms of the shipping industry. I thought it was just for transporting people.



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:27 PM
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Originally posted by cautiouslypessimistic
I'm not a huge obama fan, but you all are in such a hurry to bash him that you are overlooking his good ideas.

Today's rail tech is more more economical and efficient, not to mention green, than an time in history. A rail system like this would revolutionize the shipping industry, as semi truck would no longer have to be the main source of shipping.

Auto factories could easily be retrofitted to produce trains, rails and equipment, and the maintenance on such rails is minimal.

Thousands of jobs would be created, it would cut pollution, traffic, and the cost of road maintanance, and would streamline the shipping industry.

Where the downfall? Because it would cost money to start up? Sorry friend, but to stimulate an economy, you HAVE to put money into it.


I respectfully disagree with "to stimulate an economy that you HAVE to put money into it by spending money". You can put money into it by shrinking the size and spending of government and reducing taxes. As opposed to making government bigger and creating a bunch of projects just for the sake of saying people arent unemployed. I am not saying light rail is all bad, but WE DONT HAVE ANY MONEY. We are borrowing and printing like crack addicts who found a crack machine.

If light rail was so much more effecient then the Railroads, who try to make a profit, would start moving in this direction because it would be more profitable for them in the long run.

Plus what are you going to do with all the unemployed truckers. There is a bunch of people that I wouldnt want to piss off.

And... Why is it called light rail if it can haul all kind of freight? Just curious? Please school me?



[edit on 16-4-2009 by justsomeboreddude]



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:31 PM
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Originally posted by virraszto
reply to post by cautiouslypessimistic
 


I wasn't bashing Obama. I just don't know where I stand on this. I didn't think of it in terms of the shipping industry. I thought it was just for transporting people.

Sorry, didnt mean to jump on ya about it, it just seems that the trend lately is to knock people before even applying logic. I apologize for lumping you in on that.

I do think it is silly that they are talking about this publicly in terms of people transportation. That is in no way where the benefit would lie in something like this.

I do have to say though, in terms of "people" transportation, we have a lightrail system in Portland, and it is fantastic. It is used HEAVILY.



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:33 PM
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Didnt we do this in like 1818?

Then nobody used them for transportation so they ceased to be economically viable. Last I knew Amtrack was bankrupt and living off of its own 'stimulus' package.

I've taken trains up and down the East Coast and it's expensive. Like $60-$80 to go to Maryland from NY. Ridiculous. Not to mention the pain figuring out the bus schedule once I got there or paying for a taxi.

I would love to travel by rail but it's expensive and a real pain in the A.

To change that the cost of rail travel would have to fall a lot or the cost of flying and driving would have to skyrocket. But if driving becomes too expensive what happens to the everyday work commute? We all move into those urban ghettos and live in government condos like they want us to do or will little town to town trains spring up all over the o#ry and run every hour on the hour 24/7?

Cute idea but unrealistic and doomed to be another money pit.



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:35 PM
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Wow, we have money for this? Since when? I thought we have like some kind of huge national debt to deal with first before going on another spending spree? This is STUPID, like the idiot down the street that has $50K on his credit cards and thinks he should buy a new car today. STUPID! Obama is just another stupid idiot that doesn't understand how to balance finances. Yup, this nation MUST be headed towards bankruptcy, because who in their right mind, while already deeply in debt, would rack up more debt unless they never intend to pay it off anyhow? It's like the thieves that go out and max out what's left on their credit cards before filing for bankruptcy.



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:38 PM
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Originally posted by justsomeboreddude


I respectfully disagree with "to stimulate an economy that you HAVE to put money into it by spending money". You can put money into it by shrinking the size and spending of government and reducing taxes. As opposed to making government bigger and creating a bunch of projects just for the sake of saying people arent unemployed. I am not saying light rail is all bad, but WE DONT HAVE ANY MONEY. We are borrowing and printing like crack addicts who found a crack machine.

If light rail was so much more effecient then the Railroads, who try to make a profit, would start moving in this direction because it would be more profitable for them in the long run.

Plus what are you going to do with all the unemployed truckers. There is a bunch of people that I wouldnt want to piss off.

And... Why is it called light rail if it can haul all kind of freight? Just curious? Please school me?



[edit on 16-4-2009 by justsomeboreddude]


I would challenge you to check out, historically, spending vs. economic growth in this country. The times when this country has thrived have coincided perfectly with the highest periods of taxation. Not that Im an advocate for taxes, but it is historically true.

Also, there is no possible way to stimulate an economy without spending. Even if you REDUCE spending, you are still spending. The key is WHERE, and HOW RESPONSIBLY it is spent.

As far as the US being out of money, I hate to break it to you, but we never had any. We live in an economy that has nothing backing it. It is purely theoretical.

Railroads would have to completely break down their entire infrastructure to go the route of light rails, as the only thing the two have in common is the fact that they use rails.

True "light rails" cannot be used for hauling too much, but they can be used for transporting good from container to destination, much as semis are used for. But in most of what I have seen here, it is actually a highspeed rail system we are talking about, not a lightrail.

Truckers can easily be retrained as engineers. And, quite frankly, they are rapidly beicoming unemployede as we speak. So where is the differnce?



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:42 PM
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reply to post by cautiouslypessimistic
 


We already have a REALLY good shipping railway industry! One of the best in the world. This particular project isn't for shipping, a light rail is for transporting people.

The reason we use semis is because trains don't have the ability to maneuver and go in certain places trucks can (mostly because they're limited to the track). Our railway system spans across the country and interconnects throughout many cities in both the east and west. Thats how we progressed so fast through the industrial revolution because we had a huge railway system built, and we still have one of the best. I'm surprised you didn't know that, railroads are a huge part of American history and industry.

Having a light rail is a good idea though, but private industries should build it and if the Government does decide to, it should only be cross country. I would like to see a bullet train like, light rail system spanning the continental US some day, that would make it so much easier and cheaper on some of us who live out in the the rural west. But you gotta have money to build one, and well the government is kind of broke right now.

[edit on 16-4-2009 by asmall89]



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:49 PM
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reply to post by cautiouslypessimistic
 


"I would challenge you to check out, historically, spending vs. economic growth in this country. The times when this country has thrived have coincided perfectly with the highest periods of taxation. Not that Im an advocate for taxes, but it is historically true. "

I think it just goes down to common sense. If the government raises taxes it makes our businesses less competitive in a global market. Plus all this spending has to be paid back someday. Just like if I go to the Casino and drop 10k on my credit card. It has to be paid back WITH INTEREST.

"Also, there is no possible way to stimulate an economy without spending. Even if you REDUCE spending, you are still spending. The key is WHERE, and HOW RESPONSIBLY it is spent. "

I agree with the WHERE and HOW RESPONSIBLY. That is my point. The government is great at wasting money and spending it irresponsibly.

"As far as the US being out of money, I hate to break it to you, but we never had any. We live in an economy that has nothing backing it. It is purely theoretical. "

This is not a valid excuse for being irresponsible

"Railroads would have to completely break down their entire infrastructure to go the route of light rails, as the only thing the two have in common is the fact that they use rails. "

Great so we are going to wipe out the rail lines and the truckers which are private and we are going to replace it with light rail paid for with taxes. Plus dont you see all the trucks they haul on trains now so dont we already have the ability to haul freight via train.

"Truckers can easily be retrained as engineers. And, quite frankly, they are rapidly beicoming unemployede as we speak. So where is the differnce? "

You dont need as many engineers as you do truckers unless you are proposing that we just hook up one or two cars to each engine. Truckers are becoming temporarily unemployed because of the downturn in the economy. Not permenantly unemployed.

I will say if a highspeed rail system is more efficient for moving goods and people than so be it. If it is better some group of investors will get together and build it all out. Still creating jobs, trains etc.... Just like they built rail systems back in the 1800's.



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:54 PM
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Originally posted by asmall89
reply to post by cautiouslypessimistic
 


We already have a REALLY good shipping railway industry! One of the best in the world. This particular project isn't for shipping, a light rail is for transporting people.

The reason we use semis is because trains don't have the ability to maneuver and go in certain places trucks can (mostly because they're limited to the track). Our railway system spans across the country and interconnects throughout many cities in both the east and west. Thats how we progressed so fast through the industrial revolution because we had a huge railway system built, and we still have one of the best. I'm surprised you didn't know that, railroads are a huge part of American history and industry.

Having a light rail is a good idea though, but private industries should use it and if the Government does it it should only be cross country. I would like to see a bullet train like rail system spanning the continental US some day, that would make it so much easier and cheaper on some of us who live out in the the rural west. But you gotta have money to build one, and well the government is kind of broke right now.


I disagree, and so do the numbers. Our shipping industry is failing, from semi trucks to rails. Our origional railsystem was the envy of the world for a while, but it is HIGHLY outdated, innefficient, and truly bad for the ecosystem.

Most of what I have read in my research says that the idea with the high speed rail system is to move into a bullet train type future. The two are VERY closely related. However, normal rails, aside from the fact that they are on rails, have nothing else in common with the other two.



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 12:59 PM
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reply to post by cautiouslypessimistic
 


Maybe we do need a highspeed rail system. I think when the government balances its books and saves enough money to pay for it with cash instead of debt then we can debate the merits of it. By then, if it is viable capitalists will have already built it.



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 01:02 PM
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Originally posted by justsomeboreddude
reply to post by cautiouslypessimistic
 



I think it just goes down to common sense. If the government raises taxes it makes our businesses less competitive in a global market. Plus all this spending has to be paid back someday. Just like if I go to the Casino and drop 10k on my credit card. It has to be paid back WITH INTEREST.



I agree with the WHERE and HOW RESPONSIBLY. That is my point. The government is great at wasting money and spending it irresponsibly.


This is not a valid excuse for being irresponsible



Great so we are going to wipe out the rail lines and the truckers which are private and we are going to replace it with light rail paid for with taxes. Plus dont you see all the trucks they haul on trains now so dont we already have the ability to haul freight via train.


You dont need as many engineers as you do truckers unless you are proposing that we just hook up one or two cars to each engine. Truckers are becoming temporarily unemployed because of the downturn in the economy. Not permenantly unemployed.

I will say if a highspeed rail system is more efficient for moving goods and people than so be it. If it is better some group of investors will get together and build it all out. Still creating jobs, trains etc.... Just like they built rail systems back in the 1800's.


When taxes are higher there is more movement of money, period. More movement of money, more economic stimulation.

Also, it is not a global economy we need to worry about. Unless we deregulate our labor laws, we will never be able to compete with the China's and India's on a global scale. It's sheer dollars and cents. The only way for America to rebound and regain their place in the world economy is to focus WITHIN OUR COUNTRY. The fact that we have been trying to compete with China, India, etc, as far as global economy goes, is a huge factor as to why we are where we are.

As far as light rail engineers, I think you'd be surprised how many are required. You ought to check out some literature RE: Oregon MAX lightrail system

No one has said anything about "wiping out" anything.. But if this country does not adapt, it is doomed. Being stuck on archaic system such as semi's and locomotives because they were such a huge part of building this country is a death sentence. Techknowledgy advances....so should our transit.



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 01:04 PM
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Originally posted by justsomeboreddude
reply to post by cautiouslypessimistic
 


Maybe we do need a highspeed rail system. I think when the government balances its books and saves enough money to pay for it with cash instead of debt then we can debate the merits of it. By then, if it is viable capitalists will have already built it.



I get your point, but I feel like you really dont understand economics....



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 01:05 PM
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Not sure how fast this is going to be, but its too bad we couldn't get a train going that would go like 300 mph. I heard the fastest train now goes like 350 and if we could get something like that it'd be great. It'd be fast and it should be a lot cheaper than air. Eventually you'd think it'd pay for itself.



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 01:06 PM
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reply to post by cautiouslypessimistic
 


"When taxes are higher there is more movement of money, period. More movement of money, more economic stimulation."

Yes I agree there is more movement of money. Movement away from the people and businesses that spend it wisely toward the government who wastes it and redistributes it to things and people that are not economically viable.

Movement of money is only good if it is being moved in the right direction, Given our governments track record I dont trust that they will move it very wisely.



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 01:07 PM
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reply to post by cautiouslypessimistic
 


Yeah our shipping industry is failing... because our economy is failing. The problem with transporting goods with a high speed rail system is the terrain these trains have to go through out here. Up through curvy mountain passages with loads of snow. Yeah going real fast on an icy track is a great idea... It's like a car it's great if you can go fast but you got to be able to stop too. A 5 ton engine carrying tons of precious cargo going 120mph+ needs quite a bit of breaking power.

Yes there are improvements to our railway system we need, but replacing our already really good and well laid out system with another is a waste of money. They just need to update some of it thats all. High speed trains really have only one purpose, transporting people.

Plus you need land to build railroads... you either get it from what you already have or... buy it from the ranchers and farmers, and we all know how they loved the railroads in the 1800's.


[edit on 16-4-2009 by asmall89]



posted on Apr, 16 2009 @ 01:07 PM
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Originally posted by cautiouslypessimistic

Originally posted by justsomeboreddude
reply to post by cautiouslypessimistic
 


Maybe we do need a highspeed rail system. I think when the government balances its books and saves enough money to pay for it with cash instead of debt then we can debate the merits of it. By then, if it is viable capitalists will have already built it.



I get your point, but I feel like you really dont understand economics....




Wow, the strange thing is I was thinking exactly the same thing about you. You have good intent but you dont really understand economics.




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