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California is broke but let’s build bullet train

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POSTED August 13, 2012 5:43 p.m.

Editor, Manteca Bulletin,

Thank you, Mr. Tim Smith, for labeling me as a Tea Party member in your letter on Aug. 12.

Wow, California is broke.  If I complain about that, I am spouting the Tea Party stance?  You, and other Democrats, seem to think we have money growing on trees.  I don't, but, if you find that tree, let me know, eh?

Mr. Smith, I don't like Amtrak for the way they run the business.  As far as I am concerned, if a business needs billions of tax payer dollars to stay afloat, then maybe that business needs private enterprise.  Yes, the Postal Service springs to mind. 

 Funny how UPS, Fed Ex, fax machines and e-mail can offer competition for the Postal Service without the taxpayer funding.  George Priest, a professor at the Yale University School of Law, quoted in the May 15, 1997 NY Times, ''The U.S. Postal Service embraces almost all the aspects of socialism discredited in Eastern Europe,'' and, I add, so does Amtrak.

 Another funny thing, if governments were to build high-speed railways, they would build where policymakers think they are needed; in contrast, private businesses would build railways where it is profitable to build — so where a substantial number of riders would pay to use them. In sum, deciding between public or private building of high-speed rail contrasts goals of efficiency and access, and political groups make trade-offs between efficiency and access differently.

 Your mantra of jobs, jobs, jobs is fine but that future will have to wait awhile as we are broke.   Gov. Brown says we are the 9th richest nation-state and yet, our cities are failing, crime rampart, and did I mention, we are broke.  California cannot raise enough money to provide the basics needs that the State should provide and you want to dig us deeper in debt. 

 California needs water de-salting plants far more than it needs a bullet train to nowhere. Such projects represent jobs, jobs, jobs too, but for some reason, Democrats can't see that, they want to go deeper in debt.  If this train can be built without spending one dime of tax money and can be sustained the same, more power to you, build it, but like the Postal Service and Amtrak, it's doomed to be an empty hole trying to be filled with tax payers money.

 

Al Barth

Manteca

Aug. 13, 2012

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