It is sad but many people have the same opinion as Reggie Davis of Springfield IL. In my article the other day I avoided naming anyone who had made completely clueless comments in our local paper The State Journal Register. But reading today’s newspaper I could no longer avoid that. I’m utterly sick of people calling train travel a luxury expense. Have any of the IDIOTS who make these comments even bothered to ride a train? I can tell you from personal experience that the majority of Amtrak riders are far from well off. What I can also tell you is many people in our community are to stupid to price compare. In many cases when comparing air travel versus train. The ticket price will be cheaper for the train. Of course the train will take longer to get to the destination and that price isn’t for sleeping accommodations. Even on long distance trips most people travel coach. That would be the cheapest priced seat for Amtrak.
Why does the train in 2010 still take longer? Because of people like Reggie Davis and do to the fact that no one has the courage to invest in passenger rail only lines. Lets not mention to these morons that in almost every case true high speed rail has led to jobs and increased competition. It amazes me how these people can’t understand that large scale projects such as high speed rail lead to employment. Funny how they always seem to forget that construction workers will need places to sleep and eat. These same workers will in fact need to make other purchases. So again you have a project that stimulates the economy. Materials for these builds also need to be purchased. Anyone like to bet this helps to keep other workers from losing their jobs?
I’d be a bit more relaxed in my ranting and raving if someone had expressed an issue with investing tax dollars in an upgrade project that helps a for profit company. Any rail upgrades done on freight lines using tax dollars is basically a federal subsidy. I would even give some slack if the comment had been made that these upgrades do little to bring America out of the dark ages. But when someone states construction jobs are bad for the economy and that train travel is a luxury. I have to call them out on their stupidity.
Anyone who bothers to have a look around when traveling Amtrak can’t deny that this service is used by a large segment of the population. If you actually do some reading you will find that in countries with true high speed rail a large segment of the population is served. Traveling by rail isn’t just for the pompous self righteous people that I shared business class with recently.
Our economy would be stimulated even further if we actually built advanced train systems. However we don’t because we have allowed our country to be passed by in regards to newer rail technology. You have to many people like the person above who don’t see the benefit in advancing our nation with newer forms of transportation. Those who have this unfortunate attitude are exactly why this nation is in the crapper at this time. How anyone can state that manufacturing and construction jobs won’t help to improve the current economic situation is beyond me. It’s better than giving hand outs to communities and letting people sit on their ass collecting a check.
Reggie Davis obviously likes to play with numbers. Many people try to use numbers to prove their opinion right. Funny thing is when people are given a choice of real high speed rail they use it. The current rail line between Chicago and St. Louis has seen growth in regards to ridership. If you upgrade to newer technology these numbers would only increase. Why? Because high speed rail can compete with the airlines. In most everything I’ve read it has been shown that high speed rail actually leads to better overall prices for consumers. That of course will also help stimulate the economy in many ways. People tend to travel more when they feel they can do so for a reasonable price. Any savings on travel price may be spent on other items.
I’ve always wonder where transparency is. Meaning time and time again in our community and others we find those who are the most negative against something normally have an agenda. That isn’t always a bad thing. It’s interesting that we tend to find those who argue against things are normally working in an industry they feel will be hurt by the new technology. Then again in many cases we just have people mouthing off in a rage before actually doing any research.
Years ago a few economist were saying our country was on it’s way to being a service only economy. Their prediction is slowing becoming true. Our nation has a population that rallies against any type of technology advancement. We continue to outsource a very large amount of our manufacturing. Currently we are way behind in many industries. Americans have don’t see the need to change. This lack of understanding is exactly what will continue to put us closer to the status of failure. It’s sad how proud our citizens are that we no longer lead by example.
If your truly worried about our nation and it’s economy. Then it’s time for you to get your head out of the sand and realize the time to think differently is now.
For the record I have no affiliation with any organization supporting high speed rail. Of course it goes without saying I don’t work in the industry. I have had several relatives over the years who made their living in the rail yards. One has passed on and the other left the rails a very long time ago. My opinion is my own. But I will show support for those groups or people who think like me. Using similar technology to what was available in the 1800’s in 2010 is shameful. It’s time the majority in the United States realized we need to change or will end up a much lesser nation than what we were.
Anyone who has ever ridden an Amtrak train also knows it is time for the trains to be upgraded. The current stock is old and what has been refurbished is still very lacking in regards to comfort and cleanliness. Even business class is less than elegant. But you do get a free newspaper and drink for paying almost double to ride up front and get some peace and quiet.