Why The US Has No High-Speed Rail


China has the fastest and largest
high-speed rail network in the world. The country has more than 19,000
miles of high-speed rail, the vast majority of which was built
in the last decade. Japan’s bullet trains can reach speeds
of almost 200 miles per hour. And date back to the 1960s. They’ve become a staple for domestic travel
and have moved more than 9 billion people without a
single passenger casualty. France began service of the high-speed TGV
train in 1981 and the rest of Europe quickly followed. And high-speed rail is quickly expanding all
over the world in places like India, Saudi Arabia, Russia
Iran and Morocco. And then there’s the U.S. The U.S. used to be one of the world’s global
leaders in rail but after World War II there was a massive shift. If you look at the United States prior
to 1945, we had a very extensive rail system everywhere. It all was working great except a number
of companies in the auto and oil industries decided that for them to
have a prosperous future they really needed to basically help phase out all the
rail and get us all into cars. The inflexible rails permanently embedded
in cobblestones were paved over to provide smooth, comfortable transportation
via diesel motor coach. General Motors, Firestone Tire, Standard Oil
and a few other companies that got together and they were able to
buy up all the nation’s streetcar systems and then quickly start
phasing out service and literally dismantling all the systems over
about a 10-year span. In the 1950s, President Dwight Eisenhower
signed a bill to create the National Interstate System. It allocated about $25 billion dollars
to build 41,000 miles of highways. The federal government paid for 90% of
that, the states covered the final 10 and rail fell by the wayside. Can’t you see that this highway means a
whole new way of life for the children? And a way of life that we have
a chance to help plan and, and to build. We dedicated a huge amount of
dollars to building automobile infrastructure in the middle of the 20th century and
we’re still kind of attached to that model of development. We went from a rail-served country to
a auto-dependent nation by the 1960s. We’ve become a car culture and it’s
hard to break out of that cycle. Not to mention the fact that in
our political system we have very powerful oil lobbies, car manufacturing lobbies,
aviation lobbies, all the entities that the high-speed rail would
have to compete with. This is the American dream
of freedom on wheels. We average some 850 cars per
thousand inhabitants in the U.S., in China it’s only 250. And we’ve never gone back. But according to some this
country’s transportation ecosystem is reaching a tipping point. When you look at what’s happening
with the corridor development, again states across the U.S. who are recognizing they are running out
of space to expand their highways or interstates. There are limits at airports, there
is aviation congestion, so what are the options? A better rail system is one
and could come with significant benefits. It’s largely an environmental good to
switch from air traffic and car traffic to electrified
high-speed rail. That’s a much lower
emission way of traveling. When the high-speed rail between Madrid
and Barcelona in Spain came into operation, I mean air travel just
plummeted between those cities and everyone switched over to high-speed
rail which was very convenient. People were happier. They weren’t forced to switch, they did
it because it was a nicer option to take high-speed rail. There’s a sort of a rule of thumb
for trips that are under three or four hours in trip length from city to city,
those usually end up with about 80 or 90 percent of the
travel market from aviation. Where rail exists and it’s convenient
and high-speed, it’s very popular. America I think is waking up to this
idea that rail is a good investment for transportation infrastructure. One survey showed 63% of Americans would
use high-speed rail if it was available to them. Younger people want it even more. Right now the main passenger
rail option in the U.S. is Amtrak. It’s operated as a for-profit company
but the federal government is its majority stakeholder. Train systems reaching top speeds of over
110 to 150 miles per hour are generally considered high-speed and only one
of Amtrak’s lines could be considered as such. That’s its Acela line in the
Northeast Corridor running between D.C., New York and Boston. One of the challenges we face is that
the Northeast Corridor has a lot of curvature, a lot of geometry. We really operate Acela Express on an
alignment that in some places was designed back in the nineteen hundreds and
so it really was never designed for high-speed rail. And while the Acela line can reach up
to 150 miles per hour, it only does so for 34 miles of its 457 mile span. Its average speed between New York and
Boston is about 65 miles per hour, which is in stark contrast to
China’s dedicated high-speed rail system which regularly travels at over
200 miles per hour. But some people are
trying to fix that. In 2008 California voted
yes on high-speed rail. Now, a decade later, construction is underway
in the Central Valley of the state. And right now it is the
only truly high-speed rail system under construction in the U.S. Ultimately high-speed rail is a 520
mile project that links San Francisco to Los Angeles and
Anaheim, that’s phase one. And it’s a project that’s
being built in building blocks. So the one behind me is the
largest building block that we’re starting with, this 119 mile segment. This segment will run
from Bakersfield to Merced. Eventually the plan is to build a
line from San Francisco to Anaheim, just south of L.A. But as it stands the state is almost
$50 billion short of what it needs to actually do that. The current project as planned would
cost too much and, respectfully, take too long. There’s been too little oversight
and not enough transparency. We do have the capacity to complete
a high-speed rail link between Merced and Bakersfield. After Gavin Newsom made that speech
President Trump threatened to pull federal funding for the project. We will continue to
seek other funding. We hope the federal government will
resume funding the, contributing new funds to the project. I think in the future, as
the federal government has funded major construction of infrastructure over time
they’ll again direct money to high-speed rail because in fact it’s
not just California but other states are also interested in
high-speed rail systems. To complete the entire line as planned,
the official estimate is now over $77 billion and it’s unclear where
the money will come from. So why is it so expensive? Part of the problem in California, the
big price tag is getting through the Tehachapi, very expensive tunneling, or over
the Pacheco Pass to get into San Jose from the Central Valley. You know, Eastern China, the flatlands
of Japan where they’ve built the Shinkansen, all of those are settings
where they have, didn’t incur the very high expense of boring and tunneling
that we face so the costs are different. And a lot of the money is
spent before construction can even begin. Just in this little segment here
alone we’re dealing with the private property owner, we’re dealing with a
rail company, we’re dealing with the state agency and so
just the whole coordination. Then we’re dealing with a utility
company, just in this very small section; we had to relocate two miles
of freeway and that was roughly $150 million per mile. So there’s a lot of moving pieces
to, you know, anywhere we start constructing. China is the place
that many folks compare. They have like 29,000 kilometers of high-speed
rail and 20 years ago they had none. So how have they been able
to do it so quickly? And part of it is that the state
owns the land, they don’t have private property rights like we
have in the U.S. You don’t have the regulations we have
in terms of labor laws and environmental regulations that
add to cost. It also delays the projects. For some reason and I’ve never really
quite seen an adequate explanation as to why costs to build transit or
many big infrastructure projects are just dramatically higher than in other parts
of the world, including in other advanced countries. But the bottom line is we’re really
bad at just building things cheaply and quickly in the U.S. in general. So it’s not just rail infrastructure
that is expensive, all transportation infrastructure is. Just the physical investment in the freeway usually
will be 5 to 8 to 10 million per mile but if you add
seismic issues and land acquisition and utilities and environmental mitigation and
remediation of soils and factors like that it can become as high
as 100 or 200 million a mile. The numbers for high-speed rail can vary
anywhere from 20 to 80 million per mile. The big reason why America is behind
on high-speed rail is primarily money. We don’t commit the dollars needed to
build these systems, it’s really as simple as that. And it’s largely a political issue. We don’t have political leaders who
really want to dedicate the dollars needed. There’s a lot of forces in America
that really don’t want to see rail become our major mode of transportation
especially because it will affect passenger numbers on airplanes, it’ll
affect the use of autos. So you have the politics, the
message shaping and then the straight advertising and all three of those
coordinate and work together to keep America kind of focused on cars
and not focused on rail. Some of the earliest support for
rail came from the Nixon administration. Some of the original capital subsidies
and operating subsidies for urban transit came from the Republican party, so
I think it’s only more recently that maybe this has shifted that more
liberal leaning folks who care about climate and a whole host of urban
issues have really argued for investing very heavily in rail. If you had Democratic leadership on the
Senate and a different president or potentially some leverage for a president to
sign a new budget bill with some dollars for high-speed rail,
that could override those objections from Republicans in Congress. But I think it’s mostly ideological. They’re big on highways. They’re big on things
like toll roads. They just, they don’t want the government
spending dollars on this kind of project and they see it as
something those socialist European countries do but not something that should be
done in, you know, car-loving America. In my judgment, it would take a
very strong federal commitment, almost sort of a post-Second World War interstate
highway kind of large scale national commitment. This is why some high-speed rail
projects are trying to avoid public funding altogether. One company, Texas Central, plans to build
a bullet train from Houston to Dallas without using a
dime of taxpayer money. We’re taking what is laborious, unreliable
four-hour drive if you’re lucky and turning that into a
reliable, safe 90 minutes. And when you look at that as a
business plan being driven by data, this is the right place to build the first
high-speed train in the United States. The Texas project is backed by investors
motivated to make a profit and will use proven
Japanese rail technology. Texas Central’s goal is to
complete the project by 2025. Another private company is even further
along with its rail system, in Florida. It’s expanding its higher-speed
train from Miami to Orlando. Orlando’s the most heavily visited
City the United States. Miami is the most heavily visit
international city in the United States. It’s too far to drive, it’s too short
to fly, we had the rail link and that was really the
genesis of the project. Wes Edens has invested heavily in Florida’s
rail project which used to be called Brightline. Brightline recently rebranded to Virgin
Trains as the company partnered with Richard Branson’s Virgin Group. The team at Brightline, which is now
called Virgin Trains, has proven that it can work. The people actually want to get out of
their cars and they’d love to be on trains. In order to reach profitability, the
company sacrificed speed to save money. If you want to really go
high-speed you have to grade separate. So you basically have to build a bridge
for 250 miles that you then put a train on. That sounds hard, and it sounds expensive
and it’s both of those things. So a huge difference in cost, a huge
difference in time to build and not that much of a reduction in service. And now tech companies are
getting involved with infrastructure projects. In the Pacific Northwest a high-speed
rail plan is underway to connect Portland, Seattle and Vancouver. Microsoft contributed $300,000 towards
research for the project. Our number one priority from Microsoft as
well it to really see and pursue this high-speed rail effort happen. If you look around the United States
and where all of the Fortune 500 companies are located they all are
in a similar situation to Microsoft. The housing is unaffordable,
traffic congestion is epic. It’s too hard to get
anywhere and to get employees. So high-speed rail can solve this
same exact problem in numerous regions around the United States. So is the private sector the answer
to bringing high-speed rail to the U.S.? If the private sector wants to invest
in transportation and as long as it’s not impinging on the public taxpayers I
don’t see a problem with private sector moving forward. And I think there is some truth that
the private sector is gonna have much more of an incentive to hurry up
on the construction and get things done more quickly, more cheaply. That said, the private sector still has
to operate with the oversight and regulatory responsibilities of
the public sector. So for example environmental review doesn’t
go away just because it’s a private sector project. Labor standards don’t go away. The difference is that they don’t have to
keep trying to sell a project to the public for a vote to
raise taxes or sell bonds. Some people remain optimistic
that the U.S. can catch up to the rest of the
world and have a robust, high-speed rail system. We’re building that right
now behind us. This 119 mile segment that we want
to expand with the money we already have to 170 miles, it’s going to serve
a population of 3 million people in the Central Valley. So it’s, not only do I
believe, but it’s under construction. A lot of activity is now taking
shape, state rail authorities have been shaped in four or five states, so
they’re actually taking these on now as a legitimate project
and moving forward. I think the future is very bright
for train travel in the United States. There’s broad consensus with our policy
leaders in industry that it’s time to move an infrastructure bill and
that will certainly help kickstart U.S. rail. Others are much less confident. I wish I were
a little more optimistic. It’s just very difficult to
make the economics work here. No one has embraced it as a
strong part of their political platform. There’s just too many other
tough pressing problems we’re facing. I don’t see us catching up
to where the world is. It would take such a massive infusion
of dollars for that to happen in California and probably waving a
number of environmental requirements and some other government regulations that
hinder the quick deployment of these projects in favor
of other values. My own instincts are that it’s going
to be decades and decades of decades before you’ll be able to go a
one-seat trip from San Diego to Sacramento or San Francisco. It’d be nice if there was just
one simple answer, it’s this litany of factors that collectively add up that make this
so hard to pull off in the United States.




Comments
  1. We have the most powerful weapon & military but we are getting behind other countries because of stupid petroleum business for one stupid commuting car per person system……where is all the money gone???

  2. Because we don't have money, we are bankrupt. But when it comes to making arms and bombs we print money cause it is good for corruption.

  3. @ 7'24" the gentleman mentions "the flatland of Japan [..] did not incur high expenses of boring.."". Facts: Shinkansen lines heavily rely on Tunnels, Bridges and Viaducts. Sanyo line (1975) 281 of 563 kms are tunnels. Joetsu line (1982), only 3 kms of total 275 kms is not a tunnel or bridge or viaduct. Source: https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/291a/556b3d05a186e74e5d04e54f8bc34c497b6e.pdf

  4. Well if your govt start to repair your trains system and make it better peoples will leaving the highway and owning less cars

    Automobile industries will never let this happen

    Thats why public transportations there isnt quite good

  5. What exactly is the problem? Although the socialism in US is dangerously growing, we still can consider US to be a kind of more free market society, then centrally planned economies like socialistic EU, comunist China or Middle East dictatorships. The fact that there is no high speed rail means that people prefer other means of transport over the high speed rail. In other words, the money the people would spend for high speed rail has better use for them to spend for other services or goods. Should the high speed rail be funded from the tax money (read: money forcefully taken from hard working people) , it will be just another symptom of growing shadow-communism in US.

  6. I can't wait for Brightline / Virgin Trains to expand up to Orlando. That 4 hour drive from Miami would be cut in half. 🙂

  7. Anerica used to be able to do big things. Now we can’t do anything and not one Presidential candidate in the last 30 or 40 yrs has made modernizing transportation a centerpiece beyond the standard “fix our bridges and roads” stock speech. We can’t even increase fuel efficiency requirements by a few mpg without it becoming huge deal

  8. I checked. If you want to go from Florida to atlanta, Ga it would take over 14 hrs because you have to go to Dc first. Ridiculous. The Acela sucks

  9. America is a failing country, highways for children ha ha, look at China, Japan, England, and Europe, auto industry will never allow trains, now Tesla stupidity is going on, China is thinking about future generation, their infrastructure is for their children, Americans do not care for their children or future of their children.

  10. In Massachusetts city of malden we struggle just with light rail old train stations with high travel rate and raising up f***

  11. They first will build a wall like the chinese did and maybe in 100 years they wil build a high speed train. That wall will be a tourist atraction like in China hahaha. 1% of the US has brains and have all the money. The rest has to work in minimum 2 jobs and have no health care! Sure you have no health care the money is going to the billionaires. They are so stupid that they call people who want to change that Communists…..

  12. Because the US sensibly uses its rail network for mostly freight massive long trains taking the strain of the roads and cost effective just really sensible. As opposed to political posturing.

  13. Here in Turkey high speed rail from Ankara to Istanbul takes aprx 4 hours, by car 6-7. Come on guys invest your money in high speed rail system instead of building a stupid wall you will love it.

  14. I feel like from practical point, it's quite hard for US to achieve massive interstate project like highspeed rail way, The political and social structure in China allow CCP can sum up large amount of funding and carry out rails planning and coordinating with local provicial government much more easily and high efficiency, coz local government obeys the central government absolutely and relocate local households/commison local farmlands etc accordingly. Whereas in US even with enough funding for construction, the high degree of self governing states government can vote on the issue of where/wether/when/how muc hcompensation on the railway pass through the state, and in local town hall, city hall level, they prob go through similar process again, it's multi layers of governing bodies all have heavily influence on the decision and mapping/planning of railway construction, often time I think it's almost impossible to carry through.

  15. California is the worst place to try to put it. While in control of the democrats, any money allocated will just be stolen or funneled off to further fund the failing leftist socialist programs until the piggy bank runs dry every time. But hey, at least all the illegal immigrants will get free healthcare and housing while it lasts.

  16. There are more airports in the united states than all of the airports in the rest of the world combined. We don't have high-speed rails, we have high-speed planes.

  17. We should put the corrupt overpaid officials who were selected by stupid people like your focking self in North Korean jails. It’s practically robbery in progress. So it’s not about the speed train , but it’s about creating a devision approved by Congress ran by the most trusted individuals to catch the mofo corrupt government officials who block the pubic comfort and economy’s efficiency. That shouldn’t be that difficult, to catch the corrupt officials, since probably 95% of the officials, in my opinion ,are corrupt. 😁
    I would make or force all the government officials to attend a daily anti corruption seminars , and at the end of each session/day make them to take a mandatory test tailored towards pointing out the corrupt personalities . I would , promptly , fire the most outstanding corrupt officials on the spot and probably send them to Mongolia or Afghanistan. Why not all the corrupt ones together, because then we will have hardly anyone acting like as if they are doing some government work. 😁😁😁

  18. American private capitalist that controlling the government will never allowed the development of the high speed rail way system, especially those in petroleum industry. All kind of this system development funding will keep on delay and delay, Good job.

  19. In the UK we have a reasonable amount of high speed rail and it's fabulous. You can go from London to Newcastle (300 miles) in just under 3 hours, and be in Manchester in just under 2 hours. It's a great way to travel, only drawback is that it's pricey (flying is usually cheaper)

  20. love it….
    America: we don't have trains because we have cars
    The world minus America (yes it exists): ummm……..

  21. I highly recommend if you get the chance to go to Japan – Tokyo and experience their train system . Then take the Shinkasen from Tokyo to Osaka!

  22. Instead of building infrastructure, Donald Trump and his rich friends cream off US tax payers' monies and use them to build the war machinery against weaker countries.

  23. I heard they do have a high speed rail, underground. Connecting 131 underground bases connected to D.U.M.B.s. Deep underground military bases. According to Phil Schneider.

  24. For high speed rail, there is a reality that needs to be dealt with. In this country it is new technology. We have to build some 'test' lines first to see how they work here and make sure people will use them. The line from Dallas to Houston is a great start. When states, cities and business communities see it can be done without spending municipalities into bankruptcy then it will occur. It will also take a fair amount of selling the idea to commuters.

    One thing not mentioned was the issue which confronts the delivery business, the 'last mile' to the destination. When people arrive in the station in LA or San Francisco they still have to get to their location. In Europe and China and Japan there are substantial networks for local city transit. Bus, subway and light rail are all well established and people are used to riding them and know how they work. In the US, we are used to driving to a parking garage or lot and walking next door.

    What is so upsetting is how they always steer the issue to politics. There was no need to get into partisan politics. Unfortunately, it is almost reflexive newspeak drivel. Today it is blame Trump, blame Republicans. This is the kind of finger pointing that dilutes the value of what could have been a much more effective story since it needlessly alienates a large chunk of the population.

    California is, and has been, run by Dems for years. Even when Arnold S. who is nominally Rep., was Gov. there was a huge Dem. majority in the state houses. Every major city, every population center south of Napa is run by Dems except perhaps San Diego.

    This project in California was over budget from day one. They make it sound like Trump arrived on the scene and he made this project tailspin into a mess. No need for that kind of misleading hyperbole. It was a mess long before Trump was Prez. and will be a mess long after he is gone. Obama didn't exactly put his full support into this project.

    $200-300 Million to move two miles of highway— rules and regulations — howls of protest about this owl or that gopher. Trump and Republicans are not making that happen. Obama and a Dem congress in 2009-2010 did not make those problems go away.

    Don't blame this on Trump. It is not his doing. He looked at the mess and said it needs to be done better before there will be further federal dollars committed. Makes sense to me. You can blame Trump for some stuff, but not for this.

  25. Is the clear demostration on USA corrupt political system which only work for enterprises and corporations. Spain is the second one country in the world after China with more high speed railway and USA do not exists, diferences ? in Spain do not exits ultraliberal lobbies

  26. US is investing in the future. Why build high speed rail system when you can connect two cities with a worm hole? New York to Boston in 2 hours? Phst, how about New York to Paris in 1 sec? We just need to wait for future to arrive.

  27. Why build railway when they have almost unlimited oil supply. Besides, American love guns and horses. Big truck replace Horse in this Modern day Yo!

  28. I look at these people from California and it seems to me they really don't know what they are doing. They are a
    Bunch of Progressive Morons. They blame the Federal
    Government but they also allow all kinds of Illegals into
    The state and that costs money, so they can't afford
    A high speed rail system as a result. Idiots just idiots.

  29. 4:48 Did the vice president of Amtrak seriously say that the main challenge with this is because there is "too much geometry?" Geez louise, no wonder this country is being stuck in the dark ages.

  30. WE ARE TOO BUSY DOING BUSINESS TO DO THE REALLY IMPORTANT STUFF. YOU KNOW LIKE SELL URANIUM TO RUSSIA AND RUNNING OTHER GOVERNMENT'S, AND TAKING THE RECOVERY MONEY FROM COUNTRIES LIKE HAITI FOR THE FOUNDATION AND SUCH.

  31. High-speed trains from coast-to-coast could create 40 million clean high paying jobs easily within the first four years. High-speed trains reach speeds well over 200 mph getting about 400 miles to the gallon if not better. Versus America trains which average 74 mph burning through equal to 30 gallons per mile. Not only are high-speed trains faster and more efficient safer. They will greatly decrease the amount of petrified death everyone is inhaling every day and night all year long thanks to coal oil gas fracking sand oil. The chemical industry is doing just as much damage to our air water foods landscapes working living environment every day products. Yeah Trump says make America great what he means. Is keep America stuck in the outdated past. With low quality inferior material resources substances that connect America from coast-to-coast. The bottom line you cannot promote life by doing business with material resources substances that have been scientifically classified religiously verified as petrified death or worse case closed mercy forgiveness spiritual welfare are not changing those facts. I mean if life is not free why the hell would death be any cheaper. It's not so don't wait until you missed the deadline to improve upon and maintain the quality of life in a way that will allow each persons generation to become stronger smarter healthier happier better off physically mentally financially possibly spiritually than the previous generation. With people like Donald Trump calling the shots we will stay in the outdated past with dirty low-paying jobs. Keeping the mass majority overworked and underpaid soft lazy out of shape over fed undernourished

  32. I rode the Eurostar from england to Paris and then the TGV from France to Strasbourg and that kind of travel is the way to go.

  33. I call BS on all their excuses, don't blame the republicans or the democrats or logistics it is big oil, big auto etc… I am a republican, love my vars but also love high speed rail, also love flying.

  34. Look at Calif. Billions wasted that went to line corrupt Calif government. 100 million dollars per mile? Now it's defunct. Needs an audit from the Feds. That was Fed money coming from 49 other States. Amtrak will eventually look like Mexico and India with people riding on top of the train cars and goats inside. no kidding…

  35. I feel like these videos are only excuses made up to hide why the US is the shittiest country in the world.

  36. Why we need the train when we got so many airplanes? and car, not like china more than 3/4 Chinese don't have cars.

  37. Also, Amtrak owns almost none of the rails it travels on, and is at the mercy of cargo traffic. Despite supposed guarantees of passenger priority, if the rail's owner withholds (or delays) permission for Amtrak to operate on their property, nothing can be done about it.

  38. boeing simply doesn't want US to build high-speed rail network… otherwise nobody will buy airplane…OH MY GOD . why am i so smart….

  39. Airports are everywhere in the US. You can hop a plane to New York from San Francisco or from coast to coast for just 5 hours. You can even hop a plane to travel across Atlantic for about 4 hours! However, it would take about 20 hours for the fastest high speed rail to travel the same distance! Also, it's impossible for any high speed rail to travel across Atlantic. To describe an impossible thing to do, a popular joke said, I would board high speed rail traveling across the ocean from Beijing to New York! Even the fastest high speed rail technology in the world is still inferior to the airplane technology Americans had. This explained why the US still has no high-speed rail because travelling by airplane in America is a lot faster, more convenient and affordable. Americans won't waste billions of dollars on inferior technologies like high speed rail. However, to solve the traffic bottleneck problem of some big cities like Los Angeles and New York, Americans focus on developing underground Hyperloop transportation, which is much better than high speed rail.

  40. US Has printed trillions and if they were to spend that it will devalue the dollar as well as cause world wide dollar inflation

    So all that dollar printed out of thin air is just waiting in financial instruments

    Once dollar loses its reserve currency status, which I think within next 10 years. US will at most be like India or Brazil

  41. The US doesn't have high speed rails, so that passengers can enjoy the beautiful scenery. xD jk
    Gotta love all the "arm-chair politicians" chiming in on why we don't have high speed rails. If you don't like it, get out there campaign, and make a difference!

  42. No high speed rail because the us is a consuming nation. Not manufacturing. So basically people are not in any kind of a rush to sit on their arses and remain ignorant.

  43. Wow! Lets think about it. Why does the United States not waste a bunch of money on high speed rail? Because it is a socialist money pit that never pays for itself and gives government yet another reason to tax the ever-loving crap out of its people. When someone figures out a way to do it privately and it actually gets used by enough people to pay for it, it will happen. Otherwise, I would rather not get taxed for yet one more government bureaucratic program that sucks its citizens dry.

  44. President Obama tried to start high speed rail but the Red States like Rick Scott of Florida refused the money. I guess they thought they were going to hurt President Obama, instead they hurt American transportation and the American people.

  45. What bull, if you going to tell people why tell the truth. Cal. change the money needed multiple times, and why behind schedule, and change the size of the tracks big time. 1/4 of the size and cost 3 times more then asked. They got their money and didn't do anything and then asked for more. For the people that are saying that the government needs to pay for not a real bad idea, BUT we need to pay back the over 20,000,000,000.00 that our last president borrowed from China first. Things cost money and money isn't free.

  46. "The real reason the US is behind on high-speed rail is money"
    Come on. The country with the highest GDP in the world can't afford a high-speed rail system, while Poland (21'st in the world for GDP) can? Come on, that's rediculous

  47. What a bunch of lies. Once again the media is lying and is rewriting history to push their political agenda. There is no conspiracy. People in the US do NOT want to travel by train. This has been proven by low ridership rates of Amtrak. Passenger travel by rail is more expensive and slower than flying or driving. The US is still the rail leader – in freight. Passenger trains have ALWAYS lost money. If Amtrak or any other passenger railroad in the US did not get tax money, it would not exist. Companies did not collude to buy up street car systems. Interurbans were going bankrupt in the 1920s and most were gone by 1930 because there were better roads so more people traveled by car. This kept expanding. The rails were paved over because the interurban tracks ran in the street in towns and the interurbans were out of business and gone. Companies are not going to buy interurbans and close them down. That would be a huge waste of money. Don’t you think if interurbans were profitable the auto industry would build interurbans not scrap them? General Motors bought Electro-Motive Corporation in 1930 which made doodlebugs (gasoline-electric self-propelled rail cars) which were for passengers. EMC was renamed EMD when GM bought it. EMD has been making diesel electric locomotives since 1937. GM sold EMD in 2005. Almost all railroads except for a few government ran railroads do not get government money because railroads do not want to owe the government anything or be more regulated by the government any more than they are. The environmental lobby is far more powerful than the oil or auto lobby. Environmentalists have their own federal and state government agencies – something called the EPA and California Air Resources Board (CARB). CARB mandates auto and other industries pollution standards that are stricter than federal standards which increases the cost of all products. If is MOSTLY environmentally good to switch to rail, why does Al Gore and other environmentalists fly on private jets? Hypocrites. European countries are small. Many US states are as big or bigger than those countries. To go several hundred miles or a few thousand miles would take a long time even at 200 mph with stops in between. If California wants to build high speed rail, why should people who do not live there pay for it? Federal money should not be used to pay for it. This is redistribution of wealth. I noticed environmentalist did not stop high speed rail like they did pipelines for some animal's habitat that may or may not be harmed. Sounds suspicious to me. Corruption? Never in government. I like how Progressives in this video keep talking about China and want America to be like a communist country. Funny Progressives that are for big government regulations and higher taxes are complaining about regulations causing their pet project to cost more. Gee, what about extra cost for every other industry and individual because of regulations? America does not commit money to high speed rail because we don’t have it. Wait. Let’s just print more. Don’t worry about debt or quantitative easing. The lot of forces in America who do not want high speed rail are called tax payers. Some of the earliest support for rail came from Nixon and Republicans who were Progressives who liked big government. Nixon gave us the EPA and OSHA. I bet if both of those agencies disappeared, the cost of your Progressive wet dream would decrease. Private investors should be the way rail is funded not by tax payer money. Richard Branson who owns an airline is investing in rail. This proves your whole conspiracy theory about airlines not wanting high speed rail is a lie. As long as the private sector is not impinging on public tax payers the guy in the video does not have a problem with it. But the government is allowed to impinge all it wants on tax payers and he is ok with it. Private sector has more incentive to hurry up and get things down more quickly, more cheaply. Private sector does not have to pander for votes. No kidding? That should tell anyone a lot about government involvement in anything.

  48. I always found it unique in anime on how traveling across from towns to potentially regions in Japan was nothing to them, but in America traveling across several states required a vacation to do. Makes you think how many people spent their entire lives in one state because of transportation.

  49. It is not true that there are not many tunnels in eastern China. We have a large number of mountain areas in Zhejiang province and Anhui province, which are in eastern China. And we dig a lot of tunnels. The reason why we build the high speed rail very quick and in a cheap way is we developed many most advanced tunnel boring machines in the world. That just happened in recent ten years.

  50. China is a very wide country and the high-speed network is not so big in relation to the size, it is not a good example for the US. On the other hand, Spain has the biggest high speed network after China and after Switzerland is the country with most mountain density. The only need is a political intention to do so.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *