We turn yet again to our New Jersey correspondent for the second installment in ratpag’s Guest Post / Link Dump series. Now, you might think ratpag’s editors have simply gotten lazy after having found several unpaid, un-credited writers to produce our standard of mildly humorous, shallow analyses of transportation matters. You would be correct.
We hope you didn’t see that.
Frankly, ratpag is getting a bit fed up with you, the ungrateful reader, and your lack of congratulatory praise for our first piece of investigative reporting, open forum, and drunkenly photographed rat pics. Maybe we’re a bit miffed. Maybe we want you to see what happens when you take ratpag for granted – what happens when your dear editors begin posting columns at increasingly erratic, unpredictable times. Maybe we want you to suffer just a little and have you come crawling back after mere hours of ratpag withdrawal. Just try us, ungrateful reader. Try us.
With that – we’re proud to present another Guest Post / Link Dump!
If you, ratpag, want more criticism and original commentary with fewer links, we can certainly provide you with some remarks on contemporary issues facing rail and transit.
First of all, you, ratpag, are very smart to promote transit, especially when you consider its alternative: driving. Driving is dangerous and expensive . As the “Stateline” article makes clear, states are trying to shift the road maintenance burden to counties and local governments. Those local governments are trying to shift the responsibility to the state. Governments don’t want to take responsibility for their roads! Do you know how ridiculous that is, ratpag? To quote a movie I’m sure you’d enjoy: “You got a responsibility.”
[Your readers may not be interested in this, ratpag. As an aside, I have a few guesses about from where you might be. Given that the stateline article lists West Virginia, Delaware, and Virginia as maintaining the largest proportion of the roadway network at the state level, perhaps your dislike of wasteful state spending on highways has caused you to promote transit with so much fervor. Or, maybe you’re from New Jersey or Iowa, where the state maintains less than 10% of the roads, and you want other states to shun road maintenance for other endeavors. Endeavors like transit. Either way, we are looking for you, ratpag!]
All right, all this thinking and analyzing makes me want to take a vacation! Where should we go? We could think of Amtrak stations across the spacious country like we think of stars on a moonless night sky. Which of this constellation of stations would welcome us? If we wanted to go from the Capital city to America’s second city, two Amtrak lines could take us there! Now, neither city has any chance of hosting the Late Show, but we can visit them anyway.
If you, ratpag, want to go from DC to Chicago (and if your readers want to join us too), our first option is to take the Capitol Limited. That train leaves Washington around four in the afternoon and arrives in Chicago before nine the next morning! Once we arrive in Illinois, we could check out this rail line proposed for passenger service across the state! And, even if we don’t want to leave Chicago, we could see advances in transportation, as Chicago expands its bicycle network.
Alternatively, if you and your readers want to take a different route, the Cardinal could also take us from Washington to Chicago. If we took that train, we would leave Washington around eleven thirty in the morning, and pull into Chicago around ten the next morning. Wouldn’t that be a fun train ride?! We would be traversing Indiana for at least five hours! You could debate Hoosiers about the wisdom of spending $200 million to expand I-65. We know that you, and your readers, have an extensive interest in Indiana’s transportation system.
Hopefully, ratpag, you and your readers are saying “thank you” to us for writing this commentary. We hope we provided you with some insightful commentary, rather than just disjointed links. And, regardless, we know you and your readers will be critical of our opinions regardless of what we say. You aren’t mindless sheep, making idiotic statements in the hope of a bankroll subsidized by a totally ironic source. That could lead us into another topic. But, we’ve written enough. Goodbye, ratpag.