John Stossel: Making you pay for trains to nowhere
Both parties now agree that we don't have extra budget money lying around, but both say government does need to spend more on "infrastructure."
The reason, advocates claim, is that infrastructure, unlike most government spending, has a "multiplier effect" — it creates new wealth by doing things like speeding up travel.
Advocates also point out something that seems obvious to them: Infrastructure is a job that must be done by government. Who else would launch big projects like the New York City subway system? Subways are what Big Government supporters call a "public good."
Most of New York's subways were actually built by private companies. Few New Yorkers even know that. Private companies dug the first tunnels and ran the trains for about 40 years.
He also said, "Private investors will be part of the mix." But when I asked if any have invested so far, he said, "Not at this time."
Lytton also claimed that California's Amtrak trains are "packed." So we investigated that claim. It turns out to be far from the truth. On average, California's Amtrak trains are one third full.
America does need mass transit. Three hundred million people need to go places. Roads are congested. Who will provide it when government drives transit entrepreneurs out of the business?
Buses, privately owned buses, are now the fastest growing mass transit in America. Buses are much cheaper than trains. Amtrak charges about $150 to ride from New York to D.C. Buses charge less than $20. And buses don't require new land seizure through eminent domain. Buses aren't locked into straight-line routes. They go where people go. And when people move, buses, unlike trains, change routes.
John Stossel is host of "Stossel" on the Fox Business Network. He's the author of "No They Can't: Why Government Fails, but Individuals Succeed."
READER COMMENTS: 3
- Drew Cline: Rand Paul's coalition vs. Ted Cruz's army - 5
- Another View -- Jeff Goley and Will Infantine: Time for an increase in weekly benefits for NH unemployed - 4
- George Will: Understanding our divisions - 0
- Jonah Goldberg: Attorney General Eric Holder's race card - 0
- Another View -- Bobby Jindal: NH should trust parents to choose schools - 14
- Charles Arlinghaus: A $400 million hole was just blown in the state budget - 5
- Thomas Sowell: Fraudulent stats behind 'equal pay' claims - 1
- Jonah Goldberg: The left's arrogant groupthink - 0
- Rep. Adam Schroadter: Penalties for marijuana use in NH should fit the crime - 10
READER COMMENTS: 0
- NH Legal Perspective -- Health care decision making: Pending legislation fills gap - 0
- GoShopNH offers workshop to NH artisans on selling their products online - 0
- Christopher Thompson's Closing the Deal: Be a student of your profession - 0
- NHIAA Boys' Lacrosse: Bedford proving Division I-worthy - 0
- NHIAA Baseball: Londonderry's Corey escapes seventh-inning jam in win - 0
- Pope presides at Vatican Mass leading Catholics into Easter - 0
- Top-ranked B's seek to tie up series - 0
- Bottoms up for Red Sox in win over Orioles - 0
- Struggling Fisher Cats defeated again - 0
Man electrocuted at Keene brush fire