Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Another Way the GOP is Derailing the Economy

If Planned Parenthood didn't exist, what would be the GOP's biggest bogeyman? Arguably it would be Amtrak.

Rail transport is an often under-appreciated aspect of the engine that drives the economy. It is more fuel-efficient than automobiles, and the portion of the Northeast Corridor that runs through New Jersey is critical to the state's and nation's economy.

Yet, two days after Irene, a portion of the Amtrak system in New Jersey remains closed. This also impacts New Jersey Transit which uses the same tracks.

The faux-fiscal conservative GOP has consistently worked to reduce and eliminate Amtrak subsidies, probably because the typical passenger is not one of their millionaire benefactors. Yet, the impact on the economy due to workers unable to get to their jobs is never a factor in the GOP's calculation.

Europe and China are making huge investments in infrastructure to benefit their economies. Floods, snowstorms, and hurricanes are a fact of life in the northeast. Amtrak needs funds not only for their day-to-day operations, but to invest in preventative and restorative infrastructure so that events like those this past weekend don't  make New Jersey less competitive in the world market.

1 comment:

  1. Are you seriously suggesting the typical Amtrak passenger is not wealthier than average? Let's you and I hop an Amtrak train and do a demographic study.

    Next you will probably claim that Republicans want to cut back NPR because the average NPR listener is not well off.