Friday, February 12, 2010

I Guess Scott Walker Will Kill Highway Building, Too

Scott Walker elevates "no" to a transportation policy, saying he would, if elected Governor, reject high-speed rail in Wisconsin unless it pays for itself.

Set aside the jobs' loss for a minute.

Does this mean that to be consistent (hold your laughter) Walker will also reject road-building money for Wisconsin, too, since roads require subsidies for construction, maintenance, plowing, patrolling and replacement?


Anon Jim said...

Speaking of the proposed car-speed rail jobs, turns out Diamond Jim Doyle's bloviating about "13,000 jobs" being created used Obama-math and are a tad overstated.

Rail jobs estimate drops by thousands

Those 55 permanent jobs are going to be among the most expensive jobs ever created in the state of Wisconsin.

And exactly how many trains has Doyle bought from Talgo?

This article indicates 2 have been ordered for the Milw-Chi Hiawatha (again, wth is the state of Wisconsin buying trains for Amtrak?) which we all knew about, and then another 2 trains planned for the car-speed rail service between Milwaukee and the Dane County Regional Airport.

Did we know about these other 2 trains Doyle has apparently purchased?

jpk said...

I think Anon Jim needs to start his own blog and stop "bloviating" on the comment boards here.

Aside from that, outraged that Walker would want to send my tax dollars elsewhere so some other region can build their own rail system. What is the guy thinking!?

Joseph Thomas Klein said...

Amortized costs Anon Jim and reduced operating costs. Trains have a longer life than buses, track last longer than highways, the friction coefficient of steel on steel blows away rubber on concrete, electric power beats internal combustion.

Yeah, you can have electric cars, but then the gas tax is a meaningless way to pay for highways; not to mention the myopic anti-tax folks who took the automatic gas tax increases out. The only way to balance the highway spending frenzy is tolls, given those the train starts looking better.

The big oil funded Cato Institute and Reason Foundation pay bias shills to crank out anti-transit propaganda. Walker is either an ignorant pawn or a political opportunist. Take off the blinders and examine the facts. The Chinese aren't stupid. Time we stop being stupid as well.

Without alternative power and alternative transportation, when the oil bubble pops the US economy will be screwed. The guys funding Cato and Reason won't care, they'll just get richer selling the little oil they control.

James Rowen said...

To JPK: It keeps him off the streets.

Matt said...

Let's review.

"High speed" train that drops me off on the Eastside of Madison, away from everything = $800M and 1M passengers/yr.

Zoo Interchange with 350,000 vehicles PER DAY costs $2.3B.

The value in building and operating is with the roads. I think the jobs will be there too directly and indirectly by means of the developing businesses around that area you sneer at.

With complete insanity like this thinking, and we'll be a nation that's in your probable words "terminally repressed" or in my terminology, "totally f*cked". Don't believe me? Look at Greece!!

Anon Jim said...

Joe Klein stated:

"electric power beats internal combustion."

Hey Joe - so the car-speed trains between Milwaukee & the Dane County Airport are gonna be powered by electricity?

Is Doyle & Talgo aware of this?

And good to see you pro-tax folks are still whining about the end of the automatic annual increase in the gas tax - if the politicans want that - they can go ahead and vote for it every year.

Of course we all know they are too spineless to do that.

And jpk - here is a thought to ponder on- the Feds don't have $800 million to spend on this here or anywhere else.

James Rowen said...

To Matt: Your comment is all Greek to me.

I have said, however, that the rail stop in Madison has got to be downtown, with close access to the Capitol.

Helen Bushnell said...

I agree with James. Put any major train station downtown.

Telling me that a train station is downtown near the Capitol tells me where it is, even in a city that I have never visited. "Eastside" doesn't mean anything.

(Of course, a train with a badly placed station is better than no train at all.)