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News Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
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CrimsonPhantom Offline
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Post: #21
RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(This post was last modified: 03-31-2021 09:30 PM by CrimsonPhantom.)
03-31-2021 09:28 PM
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vandiver49 Offline
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Post: #22
RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(03-30-2021 03:13 PM)bearcat65 Wrote:  
(03-30-2021 03:06 PM)Claw Wrote:  
(03-30-2021 02:58 PM)bearcat65 Wrote:  Highway improvement yes but high speed rail has for the most part failed whenever attempted in the US.

Passenger rail will die with the self-driving cars.

What's left of it. They don't even ship as much freight via rail as they used to which is surprising.

Not really. If you have immediate resupply needs, rails is really bad at meeting that demand. That is why freight is moving more to roads.

Now if this bill was just going to repave road and rebuild bridges it would at least have some merit. But most of it is filled with High Speed Rail and transit dreams. Just projects that will enable consultants to soak up design and planning fees without a shovel of dirt ever being turned over.
04-01-2021 09:24 AM
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bearcat65 Offline
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RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(04-01-2021 09:24 AM)vandiver49 Wrote:  
(03-30-2021 03:13 PM)bearcat65 Wrote:  
(03-30-2021 03:06 PM)Claw Wrote:  
(03-30-2021 02:58 PM)bearcat65 Wrote:  Highway improvement yes but high speed rail has for the most part failed whenever attempted in the US.

Passenger rail will die with the self-driving cars.

What's left of it. They don't even ship as much freight via rail as they used to which is surprising.

Not really. If you have immediate resupply needs, rails is really bad at meeting that demand. That is why freight is moving more to roads.

Now if this bill was just going to repave road and rebuild bridges it would at least have some merit. But most of it is filled with High Speed Rail and transit dreams. Just projects that will enable consultants to soak up design and planning fees without a shovel of dirt ever being turned over.

That makes sense.
04-01-2021 09:45 AM
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Post: #24
RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(04-01-2021 09:24 AM)vandiver49 Wrote:  
(03-30-2021 03:13 PM)bearcat65 Wrote:  
(03-30-2021 03:06 PM)Claw Wrote:  
(03-30-2021 02:58 PM)bearcat65 Wrote:  Highway improvement yes but high speed rail has for the most part failed whenever attempted in the US.

Passenger rail will die with the self-driving cars.

What's left of it. They don't even ship as much freight via rail as they used to which is surprising.

Not really. If you have immediate resupply needs, rails is really bad at meeting that demand. That is why freight is moving more to roads.

Now if this bill was just going to repave road and rebuild bridges it would at least have some merit. But most of it is filled with High Speed Rail and transit dreams. Just projects that will enable consultants to soak up design and planning fees without a shovel of dirt ever being turned over.

My company likes those projects.
04-01-2021 09:55 AM
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smudge12 Offline
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Post: #25
RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
Freight rail is in a recession like other industries right now, but it was growing until the pandemic and still expected to grow 2% every year in North America.

Unless you need something immediately delivered, it's an incredibly energy-efficient way to transport goods. Only barges exceed trains in efficiency.

Not that it's relevant, but I travel by train to work (Virginia Railway Express). I'm also lucky to be in the Northeast corridor where Amtrak often makes sense over flying.
04-01-2021 10:09 AM
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Owl 69/70/75 Offline
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RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
I have a question about transit projects in particular. Why is it that every new transit system has to reinvent the wheel, rather than just taking a system that works and replicating it? I smell consultant dollars, but would be interested in knowing if there is ever any legitimate reason. I mean, the Tube in London works fine, so does the Metro in Paris, or the El in Chicago, or any of a number of others. Why does each new system have to be different?

A couple of other thoughts.
1) I am not a huge fan of light rail that runs on--and clogs up--existing streets. Houston has gone from a city that was very easy to get around downtown--wide one-way streets--to a city that is constantly snarled downtown by the light rail system. It seems to me that the ideal system uses heavy rail at separate grade to move people in from suburbs, with buses to shuttle around the inner city.
2) One thing I like about European and Japanese systems is that point-to-point passenger rail is often integrated with transit. The transit systems run through the rail stations, and rail lines often use transit lines inside cities, son it is pretty easy to transition from one to the other.
(This post was last modified: 04-01-2021 10:12 AM by Owl 69/70/75.)
04-01-2021 10:12 AM
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Post: #27
RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(03-30-2021 02:58 PM)bearcat65 Wrote:  Highway improvement yes but high speed rail has for the most part failed whenever attempted in the US.

Where in the US do we currently have high speed rail? The only thing that comes close is Amtrak's Acela Express that covers like 1 route through several cities, but that's only considered higher-speed rail and only covers a few areas with that higher speed.

Hard to say it has failed when we've never actually built it. 03-wink
04-01-2021 10:16 AM
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RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(04-01-2021 09:24 AM)vandiver49 Wrote:  ...most of it is filled with High Speed Rail and transit dreams. Just projects that will enable consultants to soak up design and planning fees without a shovel of dirt ever being turned over.

Link?

This from CNN says $621B goes to transportation including roads, bridges, public transit, rail, ports, waterways, airports and electric vehicles in service of improving air quality, reducing congestion and limiting greenhouse gas emissions.

Further, it only mentions $80b going to fix service backlogs on Amtrak's higher speed rail line.
Here's what's in Biden's infrastructure proposal
04-01-2021 10:26 AM
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RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(04-01-2021 10:12 AM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  A couple of other thoughts.
1) I am not a huge fan of light rail that runs on--and clogs up--existing streets. Houston has gone from a city that was very easy to get around downtown--wide one-way streets--to a city that is constantly snarled downtown by the light rail system. It seems to me that the ideal system uses heavy rail at separate grade to move people in from suburbs, with buses to shuttle around the inner city.
2) One thing I like about European and Japanese systems is that point-to-point passenger rail is often integrated with transit. The transit systems run through the rail stations, and rail lines often use transit lines inside cities, son it is pretty easy to transition from one to the other.

I think you're right in that it needs to be a holistic approach with a clearly defined goal, which is why the European and Japanese systems work so well. I understand those systems were built because of different circumstances and not everything applies to the US, but heavy passenger rail should be built with the idea that there will be other point-to-point systems to complement it.

I don't necessarily hate the infrastructure plan (with regards to rail), but I worry that it's more "build it and they will come" than a holistic approach.

BTW, I'm also skeptical of light rail. Perhaps my knowledge is limited, but I've yet to read where it works as proponents intend. Seems like it snarls traffic, and we've forgotten why trolleys disappeared in the first place: short trips can be done by bike or walking, slightly longer ones by car or bus (or even rideshares now).
(This post was last modified: 04-01-2021 10:33 AM by smudge12.)
04-01-2021 10:27 AM
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Post: #30
RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(04-01-2021 10:16 AM)Redwingtom Wrote:  Where in the US do we currently have high speed rail? The only thing that comes close is Amtrak's Acela Express that covers like 1 route through several cities, but that's only considered higher-speed rail and only covers a few areas with that higher speed.

Comparing US "high speed rail" to something like the Eurostar or Japanese Shinkansen is like comparing hitchhiking to space travel.
04-01-2021 10:31 AM
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Post: #31
RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(04-01-2021 10:31 AM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  
(04-01-2021 10:16 AM)Redwingtom Wrote:  Where in the US do we currently have high speed rail? The only thing that comes close is Amtrak's Acela Express that covers like 1 route through several cities, but that's only considered higher-speed rail and only covers a few areas with that higher speed.

Comparing US "high speed rail" to something like the Eurostar or Japanese Shinkansen is like comparing hitchhiking to space travel.

lol.....today = elon musk + 7 kids ginning the taxpayer
04-01-2021 10:40 AM
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RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(04-01-2021 10:27 AM)smudge12 Wrote:  
(04-01-2021 10:12 AM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  A couple of other thoughts.
1) I am not a huge fan of light rail that runs on--and clogs up--existing streets. Houston has gone from a city that was very easy to get around downtown--wide one-way streets--to a city that is constantly snarled downtown by the light rail system. It seems to me that the ideal system uses heavy rail at separate grade to move people in from suburbs, with buses to shuttle around the inner city.
2) One thing I like about European and Japanese systems is that point-to-point passenger rail is often integrated with transit. The transit systems run through the rail stations, and rail lines often use transit lines inside cities, son it is pretty easy to transition from one to the other.
I think you're right in that it needs to be a holistic approach with a clearly defined goal, which is why the European and Japanese systems work so well. I understand those systems were built because of different circumstances and not everything applies to the US, but heavy passenger rail should be built with the idea that there will be other point-to-point systems to complement it.
I don't necessarily hate the infrastructure plan (with regards to rail), but I worry that it's more "build it and they will come" than a holistic approach.
BTW, I'm also skeptical of light rail. Perhaps my knowledge is limited, but I've yet to read where it works as proponents intend. Seems like it snarls traffic, and we've forgotten why trolleys disappeared in the first place: short trips can be done by bike or walking, slightly longer ones by car or bus (or even rideshares now).

Looking at Houston, the city I know best, I think it would benefit from four separate-grade transit lines to bring commuters into/out of the city. Call them:
- Red: Katy to Baytown
- Yellow: Richmond/Rosenberg to Kingwood
- Blue: Angleton/Alvin/Pearland to The Woodlands
- Green: Galveston to Waller
All lines would pass through downtown at separate grade (probably elevated) with transfers between lines and to shuttle bus terminals.

Blue would stop at Reliant, the Med Center, and GHWB Airport, Green would stop at Hobby Airport and at the new high-speed rail line to Dallas, Yellow would stop at the Galleria and GHWB, and Red would stop at the Energy Corridor, with a limited number of other intermediate stops on all lines. Each stop would have shuttle bus terminals.
04-01-2021 10:54 AM
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Post: #33
RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(04-01-2021 10:54 AM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  
(04-01-2021 10:27 AM)smudge12 Wrote:  
(04-01-2021 10:12 AM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  A couple of other thoughts.
1) I am not a huge fan of light rail that runs on--and clogs up--existing streets. Houston has gone from a city that was very easy to get around downtown--wide one-way streets--to a city that is constantly snarled downtown by the light rail system. It seems to me that the ideal system uses heavy rail at separate grade to move people in from suburbs, with buses to shuttle around the inner city.
2) One thing I like about European and Japanese systems is that point-to-point passenger rail is often integrated with transit. The transit systems run through the rail stations, and rail lines often use transit lines inside cities, son it is pretty easy to transition from one to the other.
I think you're right in that it needs to be a holistic approach with a clearly defined goal, which is why the European and Japanese systems work so well. I understand those systems were built because of different circumstances and not everything applies to the US, but heavy passenger rail should be built with the idea that there will be other point-to-point systems to complement it.
I don't necessarily hate the infrastructure plan (with regards to rail), but I worry that it's more "build it and they will come" than a holistic approach.
BTW, I'm also skeptical of light rail. Perhaps my knowledge is limited, but I've yet to read where it works as proponents intend. Seems like it snarls traffic, and we've forgotten why trolleys disappeared in the first place: short trips can be done by bike or walking, slightly longer ones by car or bus (or even rideshares now).

Looking at Houston, the city I know best, I think it would benefit from four separate-grade transit lines to bring commuters into/out of the city. Call them:
- Red: Katy to Baytown
- Yellow: Richmond/Rosenberg to Kingwood
- Blue: Angleton/Alvin/Pearland to The Woodlands
- Green: Galveston to Waller
All lines would pass through downtown at separate grade (probably elevated) with transfers between lines and to shuttle bus terminals.

Blue would stop at Reliant, the Med Center, and GHWB Airport, Green would stop at Hobby Airport and at the new high-speed rail line to Dallas, Yellow would stop at the Galleria and GHWB, and Red would stop at the Energy Corridor, with a limited number of other intermediate stops on all lines. Each stop would have shuttle bus terminals.

long term value?

yes....
04-01-2021 10:58 AM
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maximus Offline
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Post: #34
Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
Another shovel ready boondoggle - guaranteed

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04-01-2021 11:03 AM
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RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(04-01-2021 10:16 AM)Redwingtom Wrote:  
(03-30-2021 02:58 PM)bearcat65 Wrote:  Highway improvement yes but high speed rail has for the most part failed whenever attempted in the US.

Where in the US do we currently have high speed rail? The only thing that comes close is Amtrak's Acela Express that covers like 1 route through several cities, but that's only considered higher-speed rail and only covers a few areas with that higher speed.

Hard to say it has failed when we've never actually built it. 03-wink

That's because when government tries to build one it turns into a fiasco and never ending money pit.

https://marketmadhouse.com/california-hi...Speed%20Ra

I would say the reason private entities don't try it is that the cost benefit analysis that responsible parties perform on projects showed insufficient returns.
04-01-2021 11:04 AM
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RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(04-01-2021 11:03 AM)maximus Wrote:  Another shovel ready boondoggle - guaranteed

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w/0 question....however, at least 'sum goes somewhere internally'....

w/o control how funds are dispensed/spent, I'll take that vs. 0....

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04-01-2021 11:07 AM
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Post: #37
RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(04-01-2021 11:04 AM)bearcat65 Wrote:  
(04-01-2021 10:16 AM)Redwingtom Wrote:  
(03-30-2021 02:58 PM)bearcat65 Wrote:  Highway improvement yes but high speed rail has for the most part failed whenever attempted in the US.
Where in the US do we currently have high speed rail? The only thing that comes close is Amtrak's Acela Express that covers like 1 route through several cities, but that's only considered higher-speed rail and only covers a few areas with that higher speed.
Hard to say it has failed when we've never actually built it. 03-wink
That's because when government tries to build one it turns into a fiasco and never ending money pit.
https://marketmadhouse.com/california-hi...Speed%20Ra
I would say the reason private entities don't try it is that the cost benefit analysis that responsible parties perform on projects showed insufficient returns.

We do have a private entity trying to launch one between Houston and Dallas. I have no idea how much public money, if any, they are getting.
04-01-2021 11:50 AM
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RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
(04-01-2021 11:50 AM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  
(04-01-2021 11:04 AM)bearcat65 Wrote:  
(04-01-2021 10:16 AM)Redwingtom Wrote:  
(03-30-2021 02:58 PM)bearcat65 Wrote:  Highway improvement yes but high speed rail has for the most part failed whenever attempted in the US.
Where in the US do we currently have high speed rail? The only thing that comes close is Amtrak's Acela Express that covers like 1 route through several cities, but that's only considered higher-speed rail and only covers a few areas with that higher speed.
Hard to say it has failed when we've never actually built it. 03-wink
That's because when government tries to build one it turns into a fiasco and never ending money pit.
https://marketmadhouse.com/california-hi...Speed%20Ra
I would say the reason private entities don't try it is that the cost benefit analysis that responsible parties perform on projects showed insufficient returns.

We do have a private entity trying to launch one between Houston and Dallas. I have no idea how much public money, if any, they are getting.

I think private entities are the only way to get one done.
04-01-2021 12:17 PM
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RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
04-01-2021 01:07 PM
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RE: Biden* Infrastructure Plan to Spend $4 Trillion, Increase Taxes by $3 Trillion
Quote:President Joe Biden is set to announce a multi-trillion-dollar infrastructure bill this week and, while much of the bill remains a mystery, the plan is expected to include major refurbishments to to physical infrastructure, including America’s existing federal highways and railways.

But, according to a Thursday report in the Washington Post, the White House is being warned that too much focus on “physical” infrastructure could lose the bill support among minorities, because such a focus would represent “nostalgia” for an era where “working class whites” benefitted from government welfare, and could be considered both “racist” and “sexist.”

“Some people close to the White House said they feel that the emphasis on major physical infrastructure investments reflects a dated nostalgia for a kind of White working-class male worker,” the Post noted Thursday. “In private discussions with the White House National Economic Council, the Council of Economic Advisers and the Domestic Policy Council, SEIU International President Mary Kay Henry urged the administration to follow through on its promise to approve major investments in the care economy.”

The problem lies, of course, with “centrist” Democrats, who are supportive of physical infrastructure improvements because Republicans are also likely to back spending on roads, bridges, and buildings, particularly if they can be convinced that their constituencies will ultimately benefit from such work.

Far-left Democrats want the multi-trillion-dollar bill, President Joe Biden’s second such spending bill in less than three months, to include aspects of the Green New Deal as well as sweeping welfare programs, and the “centrists” are winning the battle for the White House’s attention, especially given that their priorities are less likely to cause a jump in the bill’s price tag, forcing the White House to find new sources of revenue.

“Over the past two months, leading business groups privately told the administration that the infrastructure package should be focused primarily on physical capital projects — such as roads and bridges — rather than on the caregiving priorities, such as child care, three people familiar with the internal conversations said. Lobbyists urged the White House to jettison the care economy investments, which also would reduce the amount of tax revenue necessary to fund the package,” the Post said.

There are plenty of reasons why physical infrastructure investments may seem more reasonable to the Biden administration, particularly given how difficult it could be getting a second major spending bill through a narrowly divided Senate, but activists pressing for “care” investments seem to believe the only reason the White House is avoiding “care” investments is long-standing racial bias and Patriarchial thinking.

“We’re up against a gender and racial bias that this work is not worth as much as the rubber, steel and auto work of the past century,” one activist pressing for progressive programs said. “The key job right now is we have to in the public imagination and in the congressional debate widen the lens, so that people understand that investment in caregiving is an investment in infrastructure.”

The sharpest critic of the infrastructure bill has, so far, been Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), who called the bill a good start, but pressed for a a much larger — $10 trillion — spending program in an interview with MSNBC.

The bill, she said, was an “inspiring vision,” but not nearly costly enough.

“We are in a devastating economic momen…we’re the wealthiest nation in the history of the world. So, we can do $10T,” she said.

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04-01-2021 04:19 PM
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