Spend the money on trains

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 23, 2007 at 12:45 a.m.
Contrary to what most of the American people want, and completely ignoring the Iraq Study Commission report, the president is defiantly pushing his latest plan for the fiasco in Iraq. More troops, more money - $5.6 billion now, $100 billion more next month. No end to it.
Hundreds of billions more for "helping" the people of Iraq begs the question: "When do we get our turn?" If it's real money and not all borrowed from China, we could even build a really good national rail transportation system, where passenger trains were not at the mercy of freight trains, and create lots of new jobs.
On Amtrak's Silver Star from Washington, D.C. recently every seat was taken. Then, somewhere in South Carolina the hundreds of passengers on this train, including many kids going to see Mickey Mouse for Christmas, were stalled for 3 hours waiting for a very slow and very long freight train to clear the track. Except for the mothers of the kids, it was a minor inconvenience, but it could be prevented.
Also, we could re-establish rail service along the Gulf Coast to New Orleans, which has been shut down ever since Katrina because Amtrak couldn't get the money from Congress for the needed repairs.
Let's hope that this Congress will have better sense and listen to what the American people want and need before committing more billions to Iraq; and that they will demand realistic answers from the White House and not just get wishful thinking like "it will work because it has to work."
Doh Sheppard, High Springs

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