I was prompted to write this blog post after learning about the airlines screaming for a bail out when the industry had a 45 billion dollar stock buy back. Let’s let the airline industry go the way of the coal industry: ashes to ashes and dust to dust. The amount of pollution a jet airliner produces is pretty bad and one of the byproducts of burnt jet fuel is Benzine. So the industrial whining has me convinced that our future lies in high speed rail. I might be slightly biased because I love trains and have since I was a kid. The state of rail travel in America has been pretty much in precipitous decline for decades. But it does not have to be.
There have been advanced in railroad technology to include magnetic levitation or maglev style trains. A maglev train basically causes the cars to float on a cushion of air by two opposing magnets. One of the major advantages is that friction is dramatically reduced because there is no surface contact between the train and rail bed itself. The only friction comes from the air and the advances in aerodynamics from aircraft can be applied to the train cars themselves. Therefore, maglev trains can see large speeds. If going from New York to LA by train in 5 or 6 hours would be possible, I would skip the misery of flying. Riding on a train allows you to get up and walk aroound, maybe go to a parlour car and take in the scenery.
If we want to talk about making America great, then railroads are key to that proposition. America in its supposed greatness was when the railroads were king. Bring back the railroads with the best and brightest technology and millions of jobs will again be created to build out the new infrastructure. Jobs from design to construction would be created and filled quickly. We can put Americans back to work and building for the greater good. High speed rail is the future of America if you ask me. It needs to be a giant cooperative push between government and industry in the model of the space race of the 1960s; a time when there was corporate accountability or the corporation was punished, a time for education, and a time for gainful employment.
High speed rail is the key to making America great again in the eyes of the world. And for once it won’t be a military or prison industrial complex. It won’t involve murdering mother nature or tearing her and her animals habitats up. High speed rail and the green economy go hand in hand. It’s about good stewardship and rail is the key to this.