Sunday, November 21, 2010

Open For Bribery

It should be obvious to anyone that Scott Walker's dislike for the rail line is inversely related to his close connections to road builders. Hence, he'd like to see the money going towards more roads and continued sprawl - inefficient and environmentally degrading development.

He's been ever-so-slightly backtracking, adding caveats and qualifiers. If he stops the train he knows he will not only lose the money already spent on contracts, Talgo and those jobs, and the spin-offs from such. We will lose out on $810 million dollars. The kind of money we spent on build Miller Park, but we can't use (nearly the same amount) for infrastructure projects to benefit the region, it's workers, and our economy.

This is a great example of Republican politics. Appeal to voters emotions, conflate cronies wishes with those of general voters, promise the sky, then when reality hits, backtrack and make excuses as to why the initial declaration must be altered, or simply blame someone else or some "liberal" law.

I'm still having trouble understanding the derision of rail by the right. Maybe it has something to do with their isolationist attitudes and general lack of curiosity. Do they not know that nearly every other advanced region, city, country, etc. has a developed rail network?

Does Scott Walker really want to be the guy that makes Wisconsin's largest urban area the only major city in America without a more advanced rail network? Which is a huge competitive disadvantage. This doesn't really square with "open for business" mantra. This stupidity and shortsightedness would be laughable if it didn't hold such powerful implications for the future of the state.

For Further Reading:
Governor-elect Should Do Math On The Rail Line
Road Builders Get Return On Their Walker Investment
Trains And The City
Walker Open To Redirecting High-Speed Train Money To Other Rail Projects
Walker Urges Obama To Let Rail Funds Go To Roads

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