Sunday, June 22, 2008

We are so desperate for more intercity rail here in CA

Calitics has a good summary of the state of intercity rail here in California. Suffice to say that we are bursting at the seams, and the immediate future doesn't look great. Also, there isn't all that much hope, as long as we have the current administrations in Sacramento and Washington.

It's a little odd that Arnold has not been better on this issue, because he has pushed hard to improve California's infrastructure. I think Arnold is the right kind of Republican at the wrong time. On social issues, he's great, but on fiscal issues like this, he is hamstrung by being part of the Republican party in this day and age. Putting money into something like intercity rail should be a no-brainer for Republicans, because it's about efficiency. Moving people by rail is by far the most efficient means of doing so. And every businessperson understands that you have to invest in your business, you have to make capital investments, to stay competitive. In the current environment, tho, Republicans simply assume that government is bad, and, if liberals are in favor of it, then that makes it even worse.

I don't like writing in those kinds of stereotypes. I don't like reducing my political opponents to caricatures. But that seems to be how the GOP is working these days.

There's an old saying in politics that people don't rebel unless they have some kind of hope. That's why Obama's message of hope is not just empty rhetoric. He won't be able to change the game until he's actually in office, but if he can get those people riding on a standing-room only train to think that maybe there is a possibility of making this all work better, then they might mobilize and act in concert with him, and with one another.

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