This Is What Is Planned

On Wednesday, Breitbart posted an article that included a question to President Biden from Zeke Miller of the Associated Press and President Biden’s response.

Here are the question and the response:

Miller: As you mentioned, you mentioned that Americans are frustrated. In fact, 75% of voters say the country is heading in the wrong direction, despite the results of last night. What, in the next two years, do you intend to do differently to change people’s opinion of the direction of the country, particularly as you contemplate a run for president in 2024.

Biden: Nothing. Because they’re just funding out what we’re doing. The more they know about what we’re doing, the more support there is. Do you know anybody who wants us to get rid of the change we made on prescription drug prices and raise prices again? Do you know anyone who wants us to walk away from building roads and bridges and the Internet and so on? I do not know — I think that the problem is, the major piece of legislation that we passed, some of it bipartisan, takes time to be recognized. For example, you’ve got over a trillion dollars worth of infrastructure money. Not that many spades have been put in the ground. It’s taking time — for example, I was on the phone congratulating a Californian recently, and then someone up in Scranton, Pennsylvania, the congressman who got elected, he said, “Can you help us make sure that we are able to have high-speed rail service from Scranton to New York City?” I said, “Yeah, we can. We can.” First of all, it’ll make it a lot easier, take a lot of vehicles off the road, and we have more money in the pot now, already out there, that we voted for, than the entire money we spent on Amtrak to begin with. And it’s the same way — for example, I talked about during the campaign, that we’re going to limit the cost of insulin for seniors to $35 a month instead of $400 a month. Well, it doesn’t take effect until next year. So we there’s a lot of things that are just starting to kick in. And the same way with what we’ve done in terms of the environmental stuff. It takes time to get it moving. So I’m not going to change — matter of fact, you know, there are some things i want to change and add to. For example, we had passed the most bipartisan, we passed the most extensive gun legislation, you know, rational gun policy in 30 years, but we din’t ban assault weapons. I’m going to ban assault weapons. I’m going to try like the devil. So I’m not going to change the direction. I said I ran for three reasons. I’m going to continue to stay where I am now. I fully understand the legitimate concern that what I’m saying is wrong, okay?  One is, that I said we were going to restore the soul of the country, begin to treat each other with decency, honor and integrity. And it’s starting to happen. People are — the conversations are becoming more normal, becoming more — how can I say it? — decent. The second thing I said was I want to build the country from the from the middle out, the bottom up, and that way everybody does fine. I’m tired of trickle-down. Not a whole lot trickles down when you trickle down to hard-working folks. The third thing I know is still very hard, I’m going to do everything in my power to see to it that we unite the country. It is hard to sustain yourself as a leading democracy in the word if you can’t generate some unity. So I”m not going to change anything in any fundamental way.

Lord, help us.

American Soldiers Are Very Special People

John Hinderaker posted an article at Power Line today that is an update of an incident that occurred on a Paris to Amsterdam train on Friday. Two American military men in civilian clothes were riding a high-speed train from Paris to Amsterdam on Friday.

The article reports:

A friend of the heroes, Anthony Sadler, also was aboard the train and saw what happened. He identified them as Spencer Stone, of Sacramento, who was injured and Alek Skarlatos of Roseburg, Ore., who was unhurt.

“We heard a gunshot, and we heard glass breaking behind us, and saw a train employee sprint past us down the aisle,” Sadler told the AP.

Then they spotted a gunman entering the train car with an automatic rifle.
“As he was cocking it to shoot it, Alek just yells, ‘Spencer, go!’ And Spencer runs down the aisle,” Sadler said.

“Spencer makes first contact, he tackles the guy, Alek wrestles the gun away from him, and the gunman pulls out a box cutter and slices Spencer a few times. And the three of us beat him until he was unconscious. The gunman never said a word.”

A military friend of mine reminded me that the American military is trained ‘to run to the sound of guns.’ These men did exactly that. All of us should be grateful for their training and for the lives they saved that day.

What Do You Do When Your State Runs Out Of Money ? Borrow More For A New Project ! reported today that California legislature has approved selling $4.5 billion in voter-approved bonds that includes $2.6 billion to build an initial 130-mile stretch of the high-speed rail line in the Central Valley. That will allow the state to collect another $3.2 billion in federal funding that could have been rescinded if lawmakers failed to act Friday. California received more federal aid than expected after Florida, Ohio and Wisconsin turned down the money.

Included in the article are the following statements:

Before Friday’s vote, at least half a dozen Democrats in the 40-member Senate remained opposed, skeptical or uncommitted. Some were concerned about how the vote would impact their political futures, while others were wary about financing and management of the massive project.

One dissenter, Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, said public support had waned for the project, and there were too many questions about financing to complete it.

“Is there additional commitment of federal funds? There is not. Is there additional commitment of private funding? There is not. Is there a dedicated funding source that we can look to in the coming years? There is not,” Simitian said.

There is no financing to complete the problem–that is one of many reasons the other states turned it down! There is also the cultural element–this is California–the state with a massive highway system that exemplifies America’s love affair with the automobile. There is a cultural aspect of mass transportation that simply does not fit in with the California culture.

California has budget problems. It has had budget problems for many years. The public schools in California have cut art and music teachers from the curriculum in order to save money. To spend $4.5 billion on a high speed rail project that will need even more money to complete is simply not wise. Then there is the matter of whether or not the environmentalists will let it go forward even after construction has begun.

No wonder the state is going broke.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Another Stimulus Project Bites The Dust

The Washington Examiner reported yesterday that the partially stimulus-funded high speed rail project in California is essentially dead. The project fell victim to a combination of environmental lawsuits and federal deadlines for breaking ground on stimulus projects.

The article reports:

President Obama’s stimulus allocated $8 billion for high-speed rail projects, including, eventually, up to $3.5 billion for California’s project. However, according to the stimulus law, California must begin construction on the project before December 31, 2012 or they will not be eligible for any more high speed rail stimulus dollars. Obama’s Transportation Department reaffirmed this time limit last year when they admitted they had “no administrative authority to change this deadline.”

…Studies show that the average time to complete the NEPA (National Environmental Protection Act) process is 6.1 years. And NEPA is designed to be a preventative statute. Federal courts routinely issue injunctions to stop projects before they ever begin. That is why oil companies preemptively sued environmental groups earlier this year over leases in Alaska. They wanted to get the litigation out of the way so they could begin oil exploration as fast as possible.

The California high-speed rail project was a bad idea from the start–it was not going to attract riders and was going to be a financial black hole for the already financially distressed state. It is, however, ironic that the thing that finally stopped the project was environmental red tape.

Enhanced by Zemanta

When Government And Common Sense Part Company

Ed Morrissey at Hot Air posted an article yesterday about California’s plans to build a high speed railway. In 2008 the voters approved bonds for the $33 billion that the project was estimated to cost. Unfortunately, the project, which is not yet started, has now been estimated to cost $99 billion to complete (and not provide any service for ten years). If this sounds like insanity, that’s because it is insanity.

A few of the problems with the project–California is a net importer of electricity–no one has proposed how to power the train, the fixed-rail system will be on top of or parallel to the San Andreas fault, and taxpayers will have to heavily subsidize the service to make it price competitive with the other options of driving or flying.

The article reports:

The Obama administration vowed Thursday at a House committee meeting in Washington that it would not back down from its support of California’s bullet train project despite attacks from critics who alleged it is tainted by political corruption.

We need people in Congress who will put a stop to this sort of outrageous spending.


Enhanced by Zemanta