Fix the economy? High-speed rail. Cure transportation gridlock? High-speed rail. Restore American entrepreneurship? High-speed rail. Solve America’s health-care problems? High-speed rail. Hearing President Barack Obama extol the virtues of high-speed rail is like listening to a 19th Century carnival hawker claim a single bottle of Dr. Goode’s Magic Elixir will cure all that ails you.
Just as those foul-tasting nostrums failed to cure patients’ maladies, high-speed rail will solve none of our pressing national problems; in fact, it will make them worse by increasing our deficit and draining money from more productive endeavors.
The fact of the matter is, not since World War II has America been a country in which its people travel by rail. Yes, there are a few transportation corridors in which commuter rail serves as a popular means of transportation; the rail link between New York City and Washington, D.C., for example. But beyond those few examples,