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Tilting at Windmills

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February 16, 2011

FLORIDA'S SCOTT JOINS THE ANTI-RAIL CRUSADE.... Historically, leaders in both parties have championed infrastructure and transportation investments. That's obviously no longer the case.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) announced Wednesday that he is sending back $2.4 billion in federal stimulus money reserved for building a high-speed rail network.

"Rather than investing in a high-risk rail project, we should be focusing on improving our ports, rail and highway infrastructure," Scott announced, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

If this sounds familiar, it's because Scott's decision comes on the heels of identical moves from Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), both of whom recently rejected billions in federal funding for high-speed rail.

But Scott's move in Florida is especially ridiculous.

The plan has been to create a $2.6 billion high-speed rail project linking Orlando and Tampa, and in time, Orlando and Miami. Nearly every penny would be funded by the federal government -- and the remaining costs would be covered by private companies vying for contracts to run the system.

The benefits to Florida's struggling economy were poised to be tremendous. Independent estimates found that the rail project would create 24,000 jobs, boost economic development, improve congestion on Florida's overburdened highways, and even help the state's environment. All Rick Scott had to do was accept the check from Washington.

Today, the criminal governor refused.

The Orlando Sentinel's editorial board recently tried to come up with a coherent explanation for Scott's position, but the best it could do is (a) the governor's irrational partisanship places Obama-hatred above Florida's needs; and/or (b) he hopes to impress the GOP's right-wing base, even if it costs Florida 24,000 jobs.

In the larger context, it's worth emphasizing that America's global competitors are investing in innovative, modern methods of transportation. We could do that here and reap the rewards -- job creation, economic development, cleaner air, less congested roads, etc. -- but instead we have governors like Rick Scott, John Kasich, and Scott Walker.

Postscript: In case you're wondering, when far-right governors turn down rail funds, federal officials re-direct the money to other projects in less-ridiculous states.

Steve Benen 12:30 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (66)

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Comments

You know who also used trains? Hitler.

Posted by: justsayin' on February 16, 2011 at 12:33 PM | PERMALINK

Send it all over to California! We appreciate these backward governors, they are helping our state create jobs and high speed railways that their constituents will soon envy.

Posted by: Brian on February 16, 2011 at 12:41 PM | PERMALINK

Send it on to California! Sorry Florida, but what did you expect?

Posted by: bobbo on February 16, 2011 at 12:42 PM | PERMALINK

Okay, Brian, that's a little scary

Posted by: bobbo on February 16, 2011 at 12:43 PM | PERMALINK

And they ran on time!

But seriously, here in CA we love this stuff and desperately need some high-speed rail, and the jobs, economic activity, etc, etc. So keep on refusing those checks, guys, we're happy to take 'em. Wasn't planning on heading to your backwater state anyways, so if you want to just sit on your gridlocked freeway so be it, I'm catching the train down to LA to hang out on the beach for a bit, catch some rays.

Posted by: jsacto on February 16, 2011 at 12:44 PM | PERMALINK

in a generation from now, when high-speed rail only exists in blue states, right wingers will claim that obama rewarded 'loyal' states and political allies by targeting federal projects in those areas.

Posted by: me on February 16, 2011 at 12:46 PM | PERMALINK

Ever since he got elected, I've thought Scott won't last his whole term in office. Antics like this only confirm it.

Florida must feel some serious buyer's remorse right now.

Posted by: gf120581 on February 16, 2011 at 12:47 PM | PERMALINK

The ignorant people of Florida, aided and abetted by funds from multi-national corporations funneled through the Chamber of Commerce no doubt, and an organized voter disenfranchisement campaign, elected a convicted fraud who stole millions from the United States of America.

What do people expect?

Isn't America grand?

Posted by: citizen_pain on February 16, 2011 at 12:47 PM | PERMALINK

I wonder, how do the majority of Floridians feel about this? Are they chanting "You go, Rick!" or what?

Will they reward this insanity by voting in more GOP pols to devastate their state (and maybe the nation) come 2012?

Posted by: June on February 16, 2011 at 12:49 PM | PERMALINK
Send it all over to California!

If the Wisconsin and Ohio redistributions are anything to go by, much of it will get sent to California (California got about 1/2 and Floriday about 1/4 of the earlier redistribution, with the rest going to other states; if the proportions are similar without Florida, California would get about 2/3 of this redistribution.)

Posted by: cmdicely on February 16, 2011 at 12:49 PM | PERMALINK

I'm in NY, and the NY-NJ corridor desperately could have used the money for rail, but the Governor of NJ, Chris "Secaucus Fats" Christie, was the first, or one of the first, to turn that money down.

I'm glad to see that the money that's turned down goes to other states that will use if for rail.

I'd hate to see the money for for new hitching posts or corduroy roads in the states that turned the money down.

Posted by: c u n d gulag on February 16, 2011 at 12:50 PM | PERMALINK

Send it to Illinois, too...we'd be happy to take some of it. Unfortunately, probably not to help with the Minneapolis-Chicago corridor, since it would have to go through Wisconsin. :-(

Posted by: Jill on February 16, 2011 at 12:53 PM | PERMALINK

Isn't America grand? No, it's exceptional. Haven't you heard?

An exception to the rules of common sense.

(Grammar question: Should the period after an italicized word also be italicized?)

Posted by: Tim H on February 16, 2011 at 12:57 PM | PERMALINK

This reminds me of communities in Brooklyn which rejected subway lines, so the riffraff wouldn't have access. Those posh houses became low income tenements because no one else would live so far away from the easiest form of transportation. Short term thinking wins out too often, to a much greater long term loss.

Posted by: mlm on February 16, 2011 at 12:58 PM | PERMALINK

The NYC-Boston corridor desperately needs its rails to be upgraded in many places. We have Acela now, but calling it "high-speed rail" is a bit of a joke. For the vast majority of its journey it runs at only a small fraction of the speeds it's capable of because the rails it runs on aren't sophisticated enough to let it fly like it ought to.

Hopefully at least a chunk of Florida's money will instead fix this here in the Northeast!

Posted by: oddjob on February 16, 2011 at 1:01 PM | PERMALINK

RW disdain for federal $$ is just a result of Obama playing 289 dimensional chess with the shitbrains.

Now that cash can come back home to CA, NY & all the other Obama base states,,, where it mostly came from anyhow.

Let's see if the other crazy states can be convinced to shine on BIG fed $$$,,,
Any takers? TX? AZ? AK?
.

Posted by: cwolf on February 16, 2011 at 1:02 PM | PERMALINK

June @ 12:49 asked of Floridians:

"Will they reward this insanity by voting in more GOP pols to devastate their state (and maybe the nation) come 2012?"

My answer: Yes. I've lived here 12 years. A majority of Floridians are a very ignorant and selfish bunch, overall. Rick Scott's pandering to their ignorance and greed is perfect for them.

Posted by: DWOB on February 16, 2011 at 1:05 PM | PERMALINK

Atlas is gonna have some shrugging to do.

Posted by: hells littlest angel on February 16, 2011 at 1:08 PM | PERMALINK

In fairness, perhaps your postscript should have read:

"Postscript: In case you're wondering, when far-right governors turn down rail funds, federal officials re-direct the money to other projects in states with less-ridiculous governors."

Although the Florida might be called ridiculous for electing Scott, so... either way :-)

Posted by: cec on February 16, 2011 at 1:08 PM | PERMALINK

John Mica, the Republican head of the House Transportation Committee and a Floridian, is really pissed. Money quote from the Orlando Sentinel (http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/politics/os-scott-rejects-rail-money-20110216,0,2863027.story):

"This is a huge setback for the state of Florida, our transportation, economic development, and important tourism industry.''

Mica’s asked Scott to reconsider. They also quote another Florida Republican who disapproves of the HSR cancellation, who notes that Scott’s decision is basically slaps a lot of private industries in the face (the Florida HSR project was to be a public-private partnership). Evidently a lot of state-level Republicans are tripping over themselves to avoid criticizing the governor while covering for the fact they’ve just lost a big investment in their districts. It’s kind of similar to what I saw in Wisconsin—although on a statewide level people would be indifferent to vaguely opposed to HSR, at a small scale people were clamoring for it, not just in Milwaukee and Madison but in a lot of smaller, conservative-leaning cities as well.

Out of morbid curiosity, I did look at Orlando Sentinel articles’ comments. I was expecting the worst, but weirdly (at least as of time-of-posting) they’re overwhelmingly pro-HSR. So even if the national, or even statewide, politics of HSR aren’t great, they’re much stronger at the tip O’Neill level.

Posted by: Beta Magellan on February 16, 2011 at 1:11 PM | PERMALINK

"the governor's irrational partisanship places Obama-hatred above Florida's needs"

the sad part is that most likely the morons in Florida who voted for this crook are probably cheering him on.Let the money go to the states and the Americans who appreciate progress and growth....let the rest of them stew in their own resentment, for all I care.

Posted by: SaintZak on February 16, 2011 at 1:18 PM | PERMALINK

This Florida native hates Rick Scott and everything the Rs have done to our state over most of my adult lifetime. If it had been a normal election cycle Sink would have won easily and this disaster would have been avoided. Yes, it truly sucks for us, and unfortunately there are really no rising stars in the D party to rescue us from the crazies. I am sickened every day but what this state has become.

Posted by: 6th Gen FL Navtive on February 16, 2011 at 1:18 PM | PERMALINK

scott is posturing for his personal payday. watch and see.

Posted by: foghorn on February 16, 2011 at 1:20 PM | PERMALINK

Hey Floridians, are you sorry you voted for SCott, yet? New Jerseyans are sorry Chris Christie was voted in!See what happens when Republicans are voted in. The rich get tax cuts and the rest of America has job, education and benefits depletion.To all republicans; Enjoy what you asked for. 'Cuz you got it!

Posted by: MLJohnston on February 16, 2011 at 1:22 PM | PERMALINK

Florida LOVES rail, particularly high-speed rail. The state even has (had?) a constitutional amendment requiring it. It's TALLAHASSEE that hates it. Two GOP administrations have each killed the project: the first, Jeb Bush, simply didn't fund the mandated project, and now Scott is cancelling its replacement.

Strangely enough, while Floridians love rail, they seem at worst ambivalent about Scott. I wonder how much damage he'll have to do before that changes.

Posted by: boatboy_srq on February 16, 2011 at 1:24 PM | PERMALINK

"Rather than investing in a high-risk rail project, we should be focusing on improving our ports, rail and highway infrastructure"

How is building high-speed rail not improving our rail infrastructure?

Posted by: dob on February 16, 2011 at 1:25 PM | PERMALINK

why did you cross out criminal?

Posted by: glutz78 on February 16, 2011 at 1:29 PM | PERMALINK

why is a governor given the option? when we built the interstate highway system were the governors asked "could we kindly build a road through your state?" just call it a federal high speed train and tell the govs to shut up.

Posted by: bklyn on February 16, 2011 at 1:33 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, I'm in CA, we'll take it. That should fund Caltrain for quite a while!

There are after all, Florida..

Posted by: Trollop on February 16, 2011 at 1:40 PM | PERMALINK

Seriously he made the right decision. You don't want to waste a high speed rail project in a state where the tracks are going to be submerged in a few years anyway.

Posted by: maverratick on February 16, 2011 at 1:43 PM | PERMALINK

If this sounds familiar, it's because Scott's decision comes on the heels of identical moves from Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), both of whom recently rejected billions in federal funding for high-speed rail.

Ah, Neanderthals dragging us into the Age of Unenlightenment.


Posted by: Joe Friday on February 16, 2011 at 1:47 PM | PERMALINK

@Maverratick - FTW

Posted by: boatboy_srq on February 16, 2011 at 1:48 PM | PERMALINK
why is a governor given the option?

Because its not a federal-only program. Its a federal-state program. In Florida's case, the non-federal share was fairly small and mostly going to be covered by private investment that would assume most of the risk, but that's not the case of all the programs funded by the federal funds.

when we built the interstate highway system were the governors asked "could we kindly build a road through your state?"

Yes, State-federal cooperation was a key part of the series of Federal-Aid Highway Acts that created and funded the system.

Posted by: cmdicely on February 16, 2011 at 1:57 PM | PERMALINK

TO........Tim H
I read court opinions, where attention is paid to stuff like that.
I'd say the answer is "no."
''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''
Isn't America grand? No, it's exceptional. Haven't you heard?

An exception to the rules of common sense.

(Grammar question: Should the period after an italicized word also be italicized?)

Posted by: Tim H on February 16, 2011 a

Posted by: SteveADor on February 16, 2011 at 2:03 PM | PERMALINK

I think Florida residents are finally beginning to clue in to the fact that Lex Luthor is running the state.

Posted by: Sasha on February 16, 2011 at 2:04 PM | PERMALINK

Sasha, I'm not a Floridian, but I'm pretty sure all the "clues" one would need to determine Scott should not be a governor were present before the "residents" elected him.

Posted by: T2 on February 16, 2011 at 2:08 PM | PERMALINK

As I understand it, the norm in transit projects of all types is a 90/10 split of costs, fed/state.

So sending what was to be WI/FL $ to another state does not necessarily reduce the COST to the recipient state, but might make the projects in the recipient state bigger (assuming the recip state can come up with its 10% to pay on the additional $ taken from the likes of FL and WI).

I'd love to hear from someone else who can fact check me on this.

Posted by: SteveADor on February 16, 2011 at 2:09 PM | PERMALINK

Florida must feel some serious buyer's remorse right now.

Have you ever spent much time in Florida?

Believe me, there is no buyer's remorse there. The majority of Floridians are deeply disturbed human beings. That state will go further and further right for some time to come.

Posted by: LL on February 16, 2011 at 2:13 PM | PERMALINK

From Yesterday ...the ultimate plan ...Privatize the state - talking about prisons and mental hospitals
http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/politics/os-scott-budget-privatization-20110214,0,2558414.story
That C**ksucker bought the election with 70 million of has own money and untold (and I mean Untold Millions from Lobbyists)

The most telling part of the article:

Three companies with lobbyists in Tallahassee have reaped lucrative contracts by taking over state prisons and mental hospitals. One Boca Raton company, GEO Group, manages two of the state's seven private prisons and four of its seven mental-health facilities.

Corrections Corp. of America, headquartered in Nashville, Tenn., runs four prisons, and Management Training Corp., based in Utah, runs one.

Those three companies are prime financiers of the Republican Party. GEO Group alone gave more than $400,000 to the party in the past election cycle and another $25,000 to Scott's inaugural bash.

Geo Group's lobbyist, Brian Ballard, hosted Scott at his Tallahassee home to watch the Super Bowl. He also helped raise $3 million for Scott's inaugural.

Tea Party My ASS

Posted by: John R on February 16, 2011 at 2:47 PM | PERMALINK

Believe me, there is no buyer's remorse there. The majority of Floridians are deeply disturbed human beings. That state will go further and further right for some time to come.
Posted by: LL

LL, i'm from florida and i'm deeply disturbed -- by your asinine comment. i take it from your comment that the majority of voters here who helped put barack obama in the white house are deeply disturbed as well?

fact is scott barely won the election against a democrat who ran a mediocre campaign; unemployment here is 12 percent and higher in some urban parts of the state. in any other election year, scott would not get through the republican primary let a lone the general.

Posted by: mudwall jackson on February 16, 2011 at 2:55 PM | PERMALINK
As I understand it, the norm in transit projects of all types is a 90/10 split of costs, fed/state.

So sending what was to be WI/FL $ to another state does not necessarily reduce the COST to the recipient state, but might make the projects in the recipient state bigger (assuming the recip state can come up with its 10% to pay on the additional $ taken from the likes of FL and WI).

Its not exactly the case for the of High-Speed Rail funds at issue here, which include funds from 2 pots of money, one which had no set match requirement but was awarded with regard to readiness of projects, commitment of state resources, and other criteria, and one of which has a 20% minimum state contribution (which can be met by the state arranging private involvement, I believe). But some of the states applying for funds already have local funds committed which exceed the federal funds available (e.g., California's ~$10 billion voter-approved bond funds for High Speed Rail alone, not counting other resources that might be allocated in CA, are about the same as the total of the two rounds of federal funding -- not the funds allocated to California, the total federal funds available nationwide.)

As the state commitment of resources has been a factor in the awards of funds in both rounds, and in the past redistribution of WI/OH funds, I would expect that the states that have already committed more than is required for any of the funds with match requirements will receive the lion's share of the money however it gets redistributed, so that there won't be much additional burden on the recipients to go along with the extra federal funding.

But, yeah, the big impact isn't going to be to reduce expenditures in the recipient states, its going to be to accelerate the projects (in CA, for instance, additional money won't expand the scope of the planned CA High Speed Rail project -- at least not the amount of increased federal funds that might come from this -- but it will increase the scope of what gets built right away, which should also make it easier to get private involvement.)

Posted by: cmdicely on February 16, 2011 at 3:00 PM | PERMALINK

Just keep pouring that Midwestern rail development money into Illinois. We'll put up all the necessary factories and do the engineering development here, and when we've got the rail line to St. Louis humming Indiana and Wisconsin can kiss our pinkie rings to get the leftovers.

Posted by: Midland on February 16, 2011 at 3:02 PM | PERMALINK

Thanx for the PS Steve...I was wondering if we could deduct that money and apply it to the Dems 'billions saved'...

Posted by: SYSPROG on February 16, 2011 at 3:13 PM | PERMALINK

Wooo Hooo! Go Illinois! A side benefit not mentioned is that it will get a bunch of by then elderly boomers off the highways and into trains. Sorry Indiana and Wisconsin. Your gammys & gampys gotta keep driving.

Posted by: bluewave on February 16, 2011 at 3:14 PM | PERMALINK

"I'm in NY, and the NY-NJ corridor desperately could have used the money for rail, but the Governor of NJ, Chris "Secaucus Fats" Christie, was the first, or one of the first, to turn that money down."

Hell here regarding the lack of rail in NY as well as NJ. All we've got is the PATH, NJ Transit, MTA, LIRR, light rail, air train. Ferries and buses don't count...

Posted by: Express on February 16, 2011 at 3:42 PM | PERMALINK

Posted by: John R on February 16, 2011 at 2:47 PM

I am so glad none of this ever happened with Obama/Democrats/Libs and companies that are involved in the financial industry. Lucky us!

Posted by: Lloyd on February 16, 2011 at 3:43 PM | PERMALINK

When the strategy is to keep unemployment high and the recession going in order to beat Democrats in 2012, it's a good tactic to send back federal money, which would have created jobs and a better transportation infrastructure. The moronic base loves it.

Maybe with all these returned grants we may finally get a true high-speed rail system between Boston and Washington. What we have now is a joke.

Posted by: rrk1 on February 16, 2011 at 3:50 PM | PERMALINK

"When the strategy is to keep unemployment high and the recession going in order to beat Democrats in 2012, it's a good tactic to send back federal money, which would have created jobs and a better transportation infrastructure."

How well did the $ spent keep the unemployment rate under 8%?

Posted by: Christine on February 16, 2011 at 3:55 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, I'm in CA, we'll take it. That should fund Caltrain for quite a while!

Bleh, no. Let Caltrain die and BART and high-speed rail take its place. It's criminal that a train that goes 70 mph max can be called a "bullet."

Posted by: wilder on February 16, 2011 at 4:04 PM | PERMALINK

This was merely a formality, though Scott's words seemed to indicate that he doesn't realize the funds won't be reassigned to road transportation projects.

Florida will also be telling the US government that it's cutting $1 billion in Medicaid spending and may leave the program before Texas does.

Posted by: David Martin on February 16, 2011 at 4:15 PM | PERMALINK

Hey, that's fine with me. Redistribution to corridors that are ALREADY in heavy use would be great, because ALB-NYP needs to be a 1-hr trip dammit!

Posted by: ajw93 on February 16, 2011 at 4:21 PM | PERMALINK

when we built the interstate highway system were the governors asked "could we kindly build a road through your state?"

Yes, State-federal cooperation was a key part of the series of Federal-Aid Highway Acts that created and funded the system.


To this day Interstate 95 is incomplete. You can drive down 95 from Maine to about Newark, NJ, and up it from Miami to about Trenton, NJ, but you can't drive on 95 between Newark & Trenton because that stretch of it was never built. There was too much local opposition, or some such.

Posted by: oddjob on February 16, 2011 at 5:05 PM | PERMALINK

To this day Interstate 95 is incomplete. You can drive down 95 from Maine to about Newark, NJ, and up it from Miami to about Trenton, NJ, but you can't drive on 95 between Newark & Trenton because that stretch of it was never built. There was too much local opposition, or some such."

Try the NJ TPK.

Posted by: Francis on February 16, 2011 at 5:20 PM | PERMALINK

Don't worry, Florida will be under water soon enough...literally...

gotta luv Global Warming...

Posted by: golack on February 16, 2011 at 5:57 PM | PERMALINK

They can send the money to SOUTHERN Arizona, god knows we need the jobs, our infrastructure is crumbling and our Governor's policies seem designed to turn Arizona into a gun carrying, desert version of Mississippi.

A high speed rail between here and San Diego would facilitate the people kicked off Medicaid moving there and emptying the state, leaving it to the coyotes, sagebrush and cactus. AZ is an experiment which has failed.

Posted by: KurtRex1453 on February 16, 2011 at 6:10 PM | PERMALINK

Try the NJ TPK.


It's that or Route 1 (or back roads if you know them).

It's not that you can't find a superhighway to use, but the one you use won't be I-95.

Posted by: oddjob on February 16, 2011 at 6:26 PM | PERMALINK

"It's not that you can't find a superhighway to use, but the one you use won't be I-95."

BFD. There are highways, there are trains. The End.

Posted by: Francis on February 16, 2011 at 6:36 PM | PERMALINK

Bleh, no. Let Caltrain die and BART and high-speed rail take its place. It's criminal that a train that goes 70 mph max can be called a "bullet."

Easy to say but Bart does not go up and down the Peninsula, jackass.. Some people have no other venue but sure, BART will be a solution in how many years now? Yeah, I thought so.. You don't by chance live/vote in San Mateo?

Posted by: Trollop on February 16, 2011 at 9:00 PM | PERMALINK

Don't assume that all Floridians voted for the good governor... the vote was almost evenly split.

But, yes, Floridians are stuck with him and his lot now, and yes, the good common folk who voted for Scott are the ones that are going to be collectively fist-f*&k!d over this and blame Democrats and liberals and big government for their woes even as that goes on.

Florida congressional republicans are publically unhappy over Scott's decision, whereas most state republican lawmakers thus far are supporting him publically even whilst gnashing their collective teeth over his blatant disregard of legislative process (but hey, they helped elected him, so my sympathies are limited). Sadly enough, they'll all soon fall into line supporting him, because that is apparently what good Republicans do...

There's more interesting reading at http://miamiherald.typepad.com/nakedpolitics/

about the rail project and more.

Posted by: durindal on February 16, 2011 at 11:31 PM | PERMALINK

Good move by Scott. The democrats and their stupid, useless "green jobs" agenda will never understand how real world economics actually works. Perhaps if they took an economics class in college rather than 8 years worth of "diversity studies" they'd have a better understanding of how the business world works.

Posted by: Atlanta Roofing on February 17, 2011 at 12:17 AM | PERMALINK

Good move by Rick Scott.
When your subsidized rail stops receiving subsidies you are on the hook.
When the zero is gone the subsidies are gone.
You blue state citizens can then pony up some more tax money for that terrific rail line that goes by your back door. You'll be able to get a $12 ticket to take you to the next train station so you can take a cab to the mall. Wow, that's so 21st century and all.
I'm sure many train station will be conveniently located near the beach for all you californians.
Ridiculous fools.

Posted by: Bunky on February 17, 2011 at 8:13 AM | PERMALINK

Like Congress sabotaging the economy so a Republican president can take credit in January 2013 (they hope), these givernors are faithful to their party by hosing their state's economy by making sure Obama doesn't have a jewel to display when he goes campaigning there.

It's not so much the high speed rail they don't like. They'll accept the checks quick enough from President ??????

I didn't know who to fill teh blank in with.

Romney - Obamacare originator, near win the primary
Pawlenty - If primary doesn't wash him out from the Minneapolis bridge collapse, the general will.
Palin - way too stupid
Huckbee - oddly enough, to liberal

I thought of Ron Paul but if he DID win, he wouldn't invest government money in infrastructure so there will be no check to collect.

Posted by: toowearyforoutrage on February 17, 2011 at 8:14 AM | PERMALINK

Leaving aside a discussion of the relative merits of high-speed rail, I have a more important question. Let me make sure I understand. By refusing to take billions of dollars in borrowed money from the federal government - as if much of that won't have to be repayed, with interest, by Florida's taxpayers - Governor Scott is "crusading" against rail? Is this hyperbole taken to a ridiculous extreme for the sake of irony, or do you really not know what a crusade really looks like?

Posted by: INTJ on February 17, 2011 at 11:26 AM | PERMALINK

Also curious...do you actually think Florida and its federal taxpayers won't have to spend additional money in the future, even though rail is the single most heavily subsidized form of transit in the United States? Private companies may run it, but will work on set compensation, and not accept the operating losses. When taxpayers ante up future outlays to "stabilize" the system, on top of paying the interest and principal for the borrowed "investment" now, will they think it worth it to underwrite the 4% of them who actually use this 18th-century form of travel?

Posted by: INTJ on February 17, 2011 at 11:31 AM | PERMALINK

How many people posting comments here are over 18.

High speed rail is a money loser every place it has been tried.

Kind of the same as every progressive idea. Utter failure.

It really is time to grow up.

Posted by: bronco on February 17, 2011 at 12:29 PM | PERMALINK

Didn't he see that awesome Atlas Shrugged trailer? Rail IS *individual freedom*

Posted by: Chris_H on February 17, 2011 at 3:44 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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