Monday, September 13, 2010

California Seeks China's Help for High-Speed Rail

Governor Schwarzenegger asks China for money

NOTE: This story from Reuters dated September 13, 2010, indicates the United States government does not have sufficient funds to finance the construction of America's high-speed rail program. Otherwise, Governor Schwarzenegger wouldn't be seeking to borrow from China to build California's project.

Why, if funds are not available, does President Obama go to Milwaukee and Cleveland on Labor Day promising to re-build our rail infrastructure? Every time Obama makes a public appearance lately, he promotes high-speed rail. Apparently this a political ploy designed to garner Democrat voter support in the November elections. It is equally apparent that American voters are being told lies.

Democrat Party redistribution of wealth plans ("redistribution" is a socialist, not capitalist, concept) prevent new job creation and hinder economic recovery. Properly done, high-speed rail would provide two million new jobs within two years -- but "properly done" is defined as a national program, not building rapid transit in a handful of states.

What President Obama and Vice President Biden refer to as "high-speed rail" is really "rapid transit." Yet, estimated construction costs reflect the cost of high-speed rail, not rapid transit. Readers might want to remember that bullet trains (high-speed rail) travel from 150 to 222 miles per hour (mph). The maximum rail speed achieved by the Obama Administration plan is 150 mph.

What's going on? Oh, yes. Political ploy.

SHANGHAI | Mon Sep 13, 2010 1:07am EDT

SHANGHAI (Reuters) - California will seek China's help in financing its high-speed rail system and welcome bids from Chinese firms to help build it, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said on Monday.

Earlier this year, California was awarded $2.25 billion of the $8 billion set aside for high-speed rail projects under the U.S. government's stimulus plan. The state plans to build a high-speed line between Los Angeles and San Francisco.

"We look to China to build our high speed rail, to be part of the bidding process that we are going to go through," Schwarzenegger told a gathering of U.S. businesses in Shanghai.

"Many countries will be bidding to build our high-speed rail, (and we plan) also to look for financing from China," he said.

The $8 billion, part of the $863 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, will introduce high-speed rail to a country that has long relied on a vast interstate highway network and air travel.

Completing high-speed lines will require a mix of federal, state and private investment, experts have said.

California, which has entered into its fiscal year without a budget signed into law, has seen its financial problems crimp its ability to move ahead with projects such as the high-speed rail.

Last year, California temporarily issued IOUs during a lengthy budget impasse.

U.S. government transportation officials have also recently toured China and other Asian countries as the United States embarks on its plans to build more high-speed rail lines.