Who’s Running the Railroad?

October/20/2011 16:01PM
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Amtrak says it all about our government today.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Amtrak announced a milestone. They carried a record 30 million passengers last year. But, despite record traffic, they hit a near record loss, requiring $560 million of tax dollars from millionaires and billionaires to cover their loss.

Who got fired? Nobody. Who got called on the carpet? Nobody. Who cares, nobody?

Who said,since 1971, that this country must run a railroad that loses money?

Plus, the $560 million operating loss for 2011 is just the tip of the iceberg. They received an early $1 billion in capital subsidies, $52 million in debt restructuring relief, and access to a $562 million low-interest loan with the Department of Transportation. Building on the great success of Amtrak, Obama and Ray LaHood want $117 billion over the next 2 years to build 20 bullet trains.

Why do we tolerate this? Who ever brings it to a halt? Who says enough? When do we stop it and drop it? Sell the assets and get out of the rail transportation business. Why do we want to expand a losing business?

The answer to this is the answer to all things that are wrong in Washington. Zero accountability. No one is responsible for making a profit from Amtrak. If they were, significant changes would have been instituted years ago.

Bus companies are running most of the same routes as Amtrak and making money. Their rates are much lower and they still make money. We don’t need to provide rail transportation as a competitive alternative to the airlines and bus lines. It’s not an obligation.

Who in government will step up to the plate and say, that’s it, we don’t run a national railroad anymore in this country?

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