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High Speed Rail initiative


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#106 Darth Biscuit

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Posted 01 November 2011 - 11:43 AM

Tensor makes a hell of a lot of sense... this inter-city thing will never work here... country is too big. Too much infrastructure to build/update/maintain. Leave it to the gov't to sink good money after bad.

#107 g5jamz

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Posted 01 November 2011 - 02:43 PM

http://www.mercuryne...ail/ci_19236454

Bullet train project nearly triples in cost -- $98.5 billion -- from earlier projections

Whoda thunk it....government estimates gets someone a trainset but costs far exceed estimates.

Faster than a speeding bullet train, the cost of the state's massive high-speed rail project has zoomed to nearly $100 billion -- triple the estimate given to voters and more than enough to run the entire state government for a year.

What's more, bullet trains won't be up and running until at least 2033, much later than the original estimate of 2020, although that depends on the state finding the remaining 90 percent of the funds needed to complete the plan.

The new figures come from a final business plan to be unveiled by the California High-Speed Rail Authority on Tuesday, though some of the details were leaked to the media, including this newspaper, on Monday. Officials at the rail authority did not respond to repeated requests for comment Monday.

Gov. Jerry Brown on Tuesday was expected to endorse the long-awaited plan, the first major update to the project in two years and the last before the federal deadline to begin construction next year. But state legislators, who were already skeptical, will tear through the plan starting Tuesday before deciding whether to start building, or to kill the project.

The new business plan pegs the price tag at $98.5 billion, accounting for inflation -- more than double the estimate of $42.6 billion from two years ago, when it was already the priciest public works development in the nation. It's a little less than triple the estimate of $33.6 billion voters were told when they approved the project
in 2008. By comparison, the total state budget this year is $86 billion.



#108 Niner National

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Posted 01 November 2011 - 04:04 PM

That's already been posted in this thread G5.

#109 Happy Panther

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Posted 01 November 2011 - 04:21 PM

It was good enough to post twice.

#110 Davidson Deac II

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Posted 01 November 2011 - 06:22 PM

Fwiw, they wouldn't even need bullet trains if the current train system didn't stop in every little podunk town along its root. For example, the train from Raleigh to Charlotte stops in Durham, Burlington, Greensboro, High Point, Salisbury and Kannapolis. I would eliminate Durham, Burlington, High point, and Kannapolis, and put van service in those cities to a bigger city where the train stops.

#111 StepandFetch

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Posted 06 November 2011 - 03:45 PM

" The Austrian school views economics as a tool for understanding how people both cooperate and compete in the process of meeting needs, allocating resources, and discovering ways to build a prosperous social order. Austrians view entrepreneurship as a critical force in economic development, private property as essential to an efficient use of resources, and government intervention in the market process as always and everywhere destructive... Mises argued that rational economic calculation requires a 'profit-and-loss test.' If a firm makes a profit, it is using resources efficiently; if it makes a loss, it is not. Without such signals, the economic actor has no way of testing the appropriateness of his decisions. Socialism holds that the means of production should be in collective hands. This means no buying or selling of capital goods and thus no prices for them. Without prices, there is no 'profit-and-loss test.' Without accounting for profit and loss, there can be no real economy. Should a new factory be built? Under socialism, there is no way to tell. Everything becomes guesswork." -Lew Rockwell

#112 mr beauxjangles

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Posted 06 November 2011 - 04:20 PM

" The Austrian school views economics as a tool for understanding how people both cooperate and compete in the process of meeting needs, allocating resources, and discovering ways to build a prosperous social order. Austrians view entrepreneurship as a critical force in economic development, private property as essential to an efficient use of resources, and government intervention in the market process as always and everywhere destructive... Mises argued that rational economic calculation requires a 'profit-and-loss test.' If a firm makes a profit, it is using resources efficiently; if it makes a loss, it is not. Without such signals, the economic actor has no way of testing the appropriateness of his decisions. Socialism holds that the means of production should be in collective hands. This means no buying or selling of capital goods and thus no prices for them. Without prices, there is no 'profit-and-loss test.' Without accounting for profit and loss, there can be no real economy. Should a new factory be built? Under socialism, there is no way to tell. Everything becomes guesswork." -Lew Rockwell


what does this have to do with high speed rail?

#113 StepandFetch

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Posted 06 November 2011 - 04:28 PM

what does this have to do with high speed rail?


really?

How can government bureaucrats make business decisions when every loss is subsidized, when they are hundreds if not thousands of miles away from the concerns of those most affected by their actions? If there is no profit-loss test, there is no way of knowing which decisions are best. If this plan out-competes the airlines, and the airlines take a hit, will they be subsidized as well, or will they simply be forced to evolve in the wake of government intrusion?


The proposed new investment -- including $8 billion in the upcoming fiscal year -- would accompany a streamlined application process for cities, states, and private companies seeking federal grants and loans to develop railway capacity.


At least they are trying to work with local officials, it seems.

Edited by StepandFetch, 06 November 2011 - 04:34 PM.


#114 mr beauxjangles

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Posted 06 November 2011 - 05:10 PM

really?

How can government bureaucrats make business decisions when every loss is subsidized, when they are hundreds if not thousands of miles away from the concerns of those most affected by their actions? If there is no profit-loss test, there is no way of knowing which decisions are best. If this plan out-competes the airlines, and the airlines take a hit, will they be subsidized as well, or will they simply be forced to evolve in the wake of government intrusion?


pardon me. i did not pick up on the fact that you were keying in on the need for cost-benefit analyses. you appeared to be making a point about austrian economics. i assumed you were using the rockwell quote to simply imply that high-speed rail was a case of needless government intervention, as is often the argument when hayek or von mises is invoked. your point regarding the need to account for any potential negative externalities created by public good provision is a very good one. carry on.

#115 cookinwithgas

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Posted 06 November 2011 - 05:34 PM

I remember when all our roads were built by for profit companies because the government was unable make any rational decisions.

#116 StepandFetch

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Posted 06 November 2011 - 07:49 PM

I remember when all our roads were built by for profit companies because the government was unable make any rational decisions.



I never said Mises, Hayek, Hazlitt, Rockwell, Paul, etc., followed an infallible vision of economics. Some gov't programs have been successful, even while contradicting previous laws, just don't sweep everything under those exceptions.

#117 cookinwithgas

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Posted 06 November 2011 - 08:55 PM

Hey I have no problem with well thought out criticisms, but over the past few years a lot of people want to throw everything under the bus in order to make a point that can't be made otherwise.

#118 Chimera

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Posted 06 November 2011 - 11:13 PM

I remember when all our roads were built by for profit companies because the government was unable make any rational decisions.


cool.
i've only read about it
http://eh.net/encycl...ewski.turnpikes

#119 cookinwithgas

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Posted 07 November 2011 - 09:01 AM

That's a great link explaining how our young government used socialism and taxes to get things done when it was impractical to do things like that in the private sector. I can't believe our Founding Fathers didn't nip that in the bud, other than the fact that everyone needed roads.

Only 35 to 40 percent of New York turnpike projects – or about 165 companies – reached operational status. In Connecticut, by contrast, where settlement covered the state and turnpikes more often took over existing roadbeds, construction costs were much lower and about 87 percent of the companies reached operation (Taylor 1934, 210).


35 to 40 percent completion rates, that makes the federal government look positively genius by comparison.

#120 cookinwithgas

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Posted 07 November 2011 - 09:02 AM

And if you apply that loging to railways, Europe already had a ton of infrastructure built when the high speed connectors were built between them. That's what we are lacking and need to build up, and it's the most expensive part.


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