All Aboard the Budget Train

Look at all of us still on the platform! A big reason why I’m ignoring the conductor’s call is High Speed Rail.

Trains are amazing. Especially with routes beautifully named like Coast Starlight. And luxury trains like the Orient Express? I think in one of my past lives, I rode that thing. Gorgeous. Retiring to the sleeping car. Enjoying first-class culinary menus in the restaurant car. That must have been the life.

Enter the bullet train. Speeds so fast it will blow your hair back. Well, not really, but they are cool.

It would be great to have one between S.F. and L.A. or San Diego. Provided it was cheaper than the Southwest Airlines cattle car, I’d do it. Beats driving the nothingness that is I-5, which was best described by a comedian long ago. A tropical rainforest after nuclear holocaust.

The budget that just came out will include $8 BILLION as an initial payment for this program. Maybe High Speed Rail isn’t all that cool. Setting aside $8B while slashing programs left and right? Let’s see. If we shelve the plan, we wouldn’t have to cut the budget for the transportation we have now by $4B. We wouldn’t have to cut HUD by $2.1B.

The choo choo train can wait. You know what can’t? Subsidized housing for the poor. Keeping the impoverished warm, safe, and dry. Way cooler than High Speed Rail.

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