Program 12: Political Obstacles to High Speed Rail

    The paradox of high-speed rail is that it is endorsed in principle both by the public and by the American political culture, but the practical task of investing in and budgeting for its development with tax dollars is not widely supported. Identifies one major problem in appropriating funds for high-speed rail as the bewildering array of governmental authorities required to support such an initiative. More serious is the issue of cost/benefit analysis, since successful high-speed rail systems in such places as Europe, Japan, and Taiwan have higher population densities than the United States, leaving the up-front cost of establishing the system out of balance with expectations of return on

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