The Sunday Train for this week is an encore of the Sunday Train from 22 February, so rather than take up a large amount of front page space on the duplicate, just click on through for a refresher on what that was all about.
The issue of Cap and Trade and other kinds of CO2 emissions reduction funding for electric intercity rail transport is by no means limited to California. It is true that there is no Federal Cap and Trade system in place ~ but while obstruction and delay have halted progress at the moment, it cannot be taken for granted that its been halted permanently.
And therefore, its critical that people who would be served by an Appalachian Hub are not caught flat footed when the time does come.
According to Forbes Charles Koch, David Koch and Sheldon Adelson are among the top ten richest folks in the world. Charles Koch is worth $40 billion, David Koch is worth $40 billion and Sheldon Adelson is worth $38 billion.
Surely these guys wouldn't try to buy the 2014 and 2016 elections. Or would they?
The Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza recently wrote that President Obama is unpopular in my native Kentucky because he is “seen by Kentuckians as liberal and reflexively partisan.”
“B.S.,” counters Page One Kentucky, a Bluegrass State blog.
Page One “It’s…because he’s black. That’s why people are afraid of the man. Even Democrats. It’s why a huge number of racist, bigoted Democrats admitted to voting against the man on the basis of race alone. It’s time to stop sugar-coating this anti-Obama B.S. Sure, some of it is on legit policy grounds but very little of it.”
Punches don’t get pulled on Page One. Many liberals swear by the blog; many conservatives swear at it.
Anyway, the blog’s broadside reminded me of the unnamed “Kentucky GOP strategist” who last year confessed, perhaps too candidly, to Politico’s Jason Zingerle that, “We are still a racist state, I hate to admit it. Anything you can connect to Barack Obama is a winning thing for us.”
Of course, Republicans blow fuses when somebody says the GOP practices dog-whistle politics to pander to white prejudice or that racism fuels much of the right-wing venom against the president.
Name: Good Neighbor Day Expo at March Luncheon Date: March 12, 2014 Time: 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM Event Description: Join us for Lunch at Pritchard Community Center and enjoy the Good Neighbor Day Expo. Come at 11:00 to enjoy the booths, the meeting will begin at noon. Primary Sponsor is Bluegrass Pipeline and our Secondary Sponsor is Heartland Golf Course and Tee to Green Productions. Trino's will caterer the meal. Kentucky Neighborhood Bank is the ABC Student sponsor. Download the Good Neighbor Day Expo Application Form.
Senator Dianne Feinstein Intelligence Committee can't understand why she didn't get good intelligence on Ukraine and is upset that Russia walked in and took over Crimea and it was a done deal before she knew about it.
Politico Dianne Feinstein: “We have to better deploy our resources… because we have large resources and it should not be possible for Russia to walk in and take over the Crimea and it’s a done deal by the time we know about it.” Read more.
John Kerry, Barack Obama, Lindsey Graham, John McCain and the right wing would like us to believe they are standing up for the Ukrainian people and protesters in the streets. Really? Well, where were they when the American people were in the streets protesting and being met with police brutality? I'll tell you where they were. They were with the police. Hypocrisy!
As for me, I'm beginning to believe the Ukrainian mess is nothing but a right-wing coup designed and orchestrated by neocons right here in the United States of America. A coup that has backfired and empowered Vladimir Putin!
Truthout American neocons helped destabilize Ukraine and engineer the overthrow of its elected government, a “regime change” on Russia’s western border. But the coup – and the neo-Nazi militias at the forefront – also reveal divisions within the Obama administration, reports Robert Parry. Read more.
The forthcoming Acela II isn't just supposed to be significantly faster than the current Acela service, cutting 24 minutes from the scheduled time between Washington and New York and 38 minutes between Washington and Boston, but it will also represent a significant boost in capacity. ...
With an increase in seating capacity, Amtrak will be able to garner significantly more revenue, even if it lowers the price of Acela seating somewhat. This added revenue comes with no significant increase in operational cost and quite possibly a lowered cost, as there should be a higher rate of availability and lowered mechanical costs for what is essentially an off the shelf train, along with significantly lower energy consumption. With current averages for occupancy and passenger revenue unchanged, an Acela II train service could see $742 million in revenue, with $447 million in operational profit.
This will have an even larger effect upon Amtrak's financial deficit than initially appears because starting in FY2014, the states bear a greater responsibility for the short distance train corridors. This had the affect of reducing Amtrak's FY2014 budget request to only $373 million for the operating grant; 2013's appropriation, by contrast, was $442 million.
Note that what Paul Druce refers to as "operational profit" is what I have been calling "operating surplus" in the Sunday Train, the surplus of revenues from operations over operating costs. This is nothing like an operational profit, at present, since a profit is a financial benefit from a difference between revenue and costs, and there is nothing in the current organization of the Acela services that make a surplus on their operations into a distinctive financial asset for any purpose ... whether public or private.
Whether or not all or part of this operating surplus should be made into an operational profit is a question that goes to the heart of what is the purpose of Amtrak. The way that this surplus is spent can be the means to service a range of ends ... but what are the ends that are a legitimate use of these means?
Since Amtrak was established, and exists, as a political compromise, this is not a question about what is the proper "End" for Amtrak activities, but what are the proper "Ends" for Amtrak activities.