The following is a guest post while DJ Tablesauce is away due to his wedding.
As most of us know, Governor Ted Strickland has been promoting a high-speed rail system to connect Cleveland, Columbus and Cincinnati. He says it will create jobs and much of it would be paid for with money from Porkulus... er, I mean the Obama Stimulus bill from last year. So where does John Kasich come down on the 3C? Thankfully, on the right side:
“The 39 mph high-speed train is dead when I become governor,” he said, adding later, “We don’t have the money to operate it, we don’t have the money long-term to fund it ... (and) I’m still trying to find somebody in Ohio that wants to get on that train. No, no, we have to shut it down before it gets too far.”
Kasich is right. Who is going to ride this thing? I actually travel from NE Ohio to the Columbus area several times a year, so I'm probably the target market for this train, right? Let's compare my current method, to the new choice Strickland and other Democrats think I need.
I get in my car, and drive directly to my destination in 2 hours at a cost of about $12 in gas.
Using the 3C
I get in my car and drive to the train station. 15 minutes.
I park my car and wait for the train. 30 minutes or more.
I board the train and ride it to the train station in Columbus. 4 hours.
Rent a car. 15 minutes and mucho bucks.
Drive to my final destination. 15 minutes.
So let's see. 2 hours and $12 versus around 5 hours and a lot more money for a train ticket and rental car. Gee, which one will I choose? Yes, I know I don't need the rental car if I have someone to pick me up. I'm sure my family will really appreciate driving me back and forth.
Even by the administration's own rosy projections, the system would have a $17 million dollar shortfall every year to be picked up by us taxpayers. And DJ Tablesauce has already covered how these "high speed" passenger trains could ruin our rail freight system, which is the best in the world.
If there was a profitable market for this service, someone in the private sector would be operating one by now. There isn't. This unbelievably stupid proposal would be one of the largest public boondoggles in Ohio's history. John Kasich knows that, and I hope he makes it an issue as the campaign progresses.