Reason Morning Links: Obama To Propose High Speed Rail, World Economic Forum Opens in Davos, CIA Agent Retracts Waterboarding Claims


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    1. Local news has the FBI now investigating this.

    2. That’s pretty bad. It will be interesting to see if any neutral witnesses come forward, but it doesn’t seem like the guy had any reason to run from them if he knew they were police, so I find his version more believable.

      Homewood is, as you would guess, a pretty rough neighborhood.

      1. Wow! Slurpa still believes the police, but also believes the victim because Slurpa–in his “neutral” and “objective” view–has determined that he feels the victim didn’t seem to have reason to run! It’s like Xmas!

    3. Imagine if he had his violin case with him.

      “He’s got a Tommy Gun!”

      1. That’s the crazy shit – I assumed that he had his vioilin case with him. They beat him over a freakin soda (well, the lack of his respect for their authori-thai, but they still blamed the soda).

    4. WTF? Are you filling in for Balko or some shit? Damn man I just started my coffee here.


      1. His missed saving role joke and lack of carnage in the original post drove me to posting that.

  1. Good morning Radley!

    In other news, Avatar has sort of the highest gross of any movie ever, i.e., highest unadjusted gross. Plus China renamed some mountains for Avatar movie mountains, to promote tourism after a partial ban of the movie.

    1. Avatar is currently the fifth highest grossing movie, adjusted for inflation (and with a pretty big assumption that introduces some inaccuracy). It’s about $20 million away from replacing E. T. in the fourth spot, but more than a billion away from Gone with the Wind.

      1. Highlighting one of Hollywood’s big lies that the media never, ever questions.

        1. Actually being named Rhett, I feel comfortable in saying I don’t give a damn.

        2. Speaking of lies and media cluelessness, Barbara Boxer just said on the morning MSNBC show that under Bill Clinton, we had a surplus on the federal budget and the national debt. None of the hosts called her on it.

          1. Why would they? If they understood economics, they wouldn’t be in love with the Democratic suicide solution. Actually, that’s not fair. The Demopublican suicide solution.

        3. I don’t get it, what is the Hollywood big lie that the media never questions?

          1. They want you to believe that more people are watching the crap they’re putting out now, rather than the less crappy movies they put out in the past.

            I’m not a fan of GWTW, incidentally.

      2. with a pretty big assumption that introduces some inaccuracy

        The assumption being the false one that movie tickets rise at the same rate of inflation as everything else? I think there’s another assumption too about discount tickets and child tickets.

      3. From the quote in the link: However, “Titanic” still rules the universe in terms of how many people went to see it compared to the number that have lined up for “Avatar.”

        1. The number of tickets sold would seem to be a better indicator of a movie’s box office popularity.

          1. For the most part, but if tickets were cheaper (compared to inflation) then, and home video less common (so people couldn’t just wait to rent it or buy it or see it on TV), then all things still aren’t really equal. Throw in the old discount movie theaters that used to show non first-run movies but for a much cheaper price, and it’s very difficult to have just one correct comparison.

            1. There will always be outside influences (e.g. some movies are better than others) on how many people buy theater tickets, but butts in the seats still seems to be as accurate an indicator of box office popularity through the ages as you can get.

              (Theater grosses seem to be what these lists center on, or am I wrong about that?)

              1. Exactly. What happens if we get runaway inflation? “This week, Gigli II: Yes It Can Get Stupider shattered box office records with one trillion in sales, despite claims by theater owners that hardly anyone is watching the film.”

                1. I wouldn’t pay a gipper to see a crap movie like that.

                  1. Though that movie would stand a chance of being better than the original.

  2. # Federal appeals court upholds prison ban on Dungeons & Dragons.

    There was a failed saving roll joke in that one. Lil’ disappointed it was missed.

    1. I would’ve gone with something about worry over prisoners enchanting their own “boots of escaping.”

      1. Far more worriesome – prison LARPing.

        1. There’s a prison sword fight pun euphemism in there somewhere.

    2. Did the opinion turn on whether or not nerds are a protected class?

      1. I hear they will be getting title VII status next year.

  3. Sweet. I cannot wait to ride those rails – subsidized ticket fare I hope.

    1. How else do we keep white elephants on life support?

  4. I summon my Lord and Savior, the Anonymity Bot! We beg of you, give us our Zen-like daily comment for us to puzzle over to gain enlightenment trying to tie it to the actual post.


      1. I got a rock.

        1. And I got the hos. It be party time!

  5. Obama to announce $8 billion high-speed rail project in State of the Union speech tonight.

    Good to see that the “Save or Create Jobs” welfare program for 2025 is on schedule.

    $8 billion. That’s a nice downpayment for hyper-expensive boondoggles that will *never* show a net profit.

    1. Just wait until the first major terrorist attack (or crotch igniting blunder) on a train in the US opens up TSA employment to handle rail security.

      1. They’re already doing that. TSA’s been working the Amtrak stations in DC/Philly/NY/Boston at times in pilot programs.

        1. They’re already doing that. TSA’s been working the Amtrak stations brothels and crack houses in DC/Philly/NY/Boston at times in pilot programs.


        2. They’re already doing that. TSA’s been working “working” the Amtrak stations in DC/Philly/NY/Boston . . . .

          More FIFY.

        3. I must be blind – I never see the TSA guys on the Penn to DC line….

          Jobs created and/or saved!!!1!!!1

    2. For his sake, I hope the Teleprompter programmer puts the spending-billions-on-high-speed-rail blurb several paragraphs away from the freezing-discretionary-spending blurb.

      1. The $8 billion has already been approved, in last year’s stimulus. That whole thing about freezing spending authority is related to him not needing additional spending authority thanks to TARP etc.

        But yeah, people might notice.

    1. Lyle Lanley: Well, sir, there’s nothing on earth like a genuine, bona fide, electrified, six-car Monorail! What’d I say?
      Flanders: Monorail!
      Lanley: What’s it called?
      Patty & Selma: Monorail!
      Lanley: That’s right! Monorail!
      [crowd chants ‘Monorail’]

      Miss Hoover: I hear those things are awfully loud…
      Lanley: It glides as softly as a cloud
      Apu: Is there a chance the track could bend?
      Lanley: Not on your life, my Hindu friend.

      Barney: What about us brain-dead slobs?
      Lanley: You’ll be given cushy jobs
      Abe: Were you sent here by the devil?
      Lanley: No, good sir, I’m on the level.

      Wiggum: The ring came off my pudding can
      Lanley: Take my pen knife, my good man
      I swear it’s Springfield’s only choice
      Throw up your hands and raise your voice!
      All: Monorail!
      Lanley: What’s it called?
      All: Monorail!
      Lanley: Once again…
      All: Monorail!

      Marge: But Main Street’s still all cracked and broken…
      Bart: Sorry, Mom, the mob has spoken!
      All: Monorail! Monorail! Monorail!
      [big finish] Monorail!
      Homer: Mono… D’oh!

      1. By the many arms of Vishnu – I am not a Hindu!

        1. “Don’t worry. I’ll tell everyone you were untouchable.”

          1. oh didn’t I?

      2. yea +10

        ? Monorail, monorail, monorail ?

    2. Don’t we need a little more Unobtanium for that?

  6. CIA operative retracts his claims that waterboarding Abu Zubaydah produced valuable intelligence.

    That just means he needed to be tortured aggressively interrogated more!

    The techniques are just like a fraternity hazing anyway. I bet they only made Zubaydah swallow a goldfish or showed him a picture of a dog or something. No worse than what we do to our own soldiers to train them. We routinely keep own on soldiers in isolation in a foreign country for years and aggressively interrogate them for weeks on end. Staying awake. Ooh, little sissies. I stayed awake two days once studying for finals. Was that torture?

    By posting this, it just proves once again that Reason sides with terrorists over the good and honest citizens of the real America. Reason magazine is a hotbed of libertine terrorist sympathizers that lose the large voting block of libertarian Republicans that want to see aggressive interrogation and some respect for law and order.

    1. Mmmm…. libertine sandwich.

  7. WTF is it with politicians and money-losing transportation projects? If we needed high-speed rail, it would be profitable to build it. No tax money needed.


    1. of course you would have to spend 5-10 yrs buying options on easements/rights of way without eminent domain… which, now that I think of it, is actually a feature..

    2. WTF is it with politicians and money-losing transportation projects? If we needed highways, it would be profitable to build them. No tax money needed.

      1. Oh dear, that’s a losing battle. But kudos for balls to pick up that flag and run with it.

        (pssst. there are private roads)

        1. There are private trains as well (at least here in Europe, no idea about the US)

          1. Not sure about trains, but we have toll roads that general exceed public roads in quality.

      1. Biden would be just as bad, but at least he’s not a jinxy jinxer that jinxes people.

        1. Don’t worry, this Wildcats season will eventually be wiped out for recruiting violations by Calipari anyway.

          1. Resenting success is an ugly trait.

            1. Yep, it’s sad that Kentucky fans resent the success of other schools so much that they have to resort to cheating.

          2. Damn that Calipari for getting caught doing what everyone else does!

            1. Damn that Calipari for getting caught doing what everyone else [at Kentucky] does!

              1. Adorable naivete or willful baiting? You make the call!

              2. Maybe Congress will get involved.

              3. Jesus, Thacker, it’s Kentucky. Let them have something.

  8. From the Soul Train 3.0 article…

    “Even experts who favor high-speed rail question whether the awards Obama will announce Thursday can turn into the job generators the administration is hoping for. Because the U.S. has never had the kind of bullet trains found in Europe and Asia, there are no U.S. engineering companies or manufacturers with experience in high-speed rail.”

    Do Obama and his cohorts simply stick their fingers in their ears and scream “I’M NOT LISTENING!!!” when doing this shit?

    WARNING: Hope and Change? may cause delusion from limited exposure. Prolonged exposure has been linked to loss of mental capacity and in some cases, insanity.

    1. Side effects include shortness of breath, lightness of wallet, rectal pain, nipple bleeding and certain forms of unicorn cancer.

      1. “Do not taunt Happy Fun President.”

      2. You forgot rectal seepage and bleeding, and rose tinted vision.

    2. I would like to make a joke about ‘Shake Weight’-ing and post a link, but stupid iPhone makes that impossible.

      1. I can post links with my iPhone in comments. Just cutnpaste the link and surround it with the “a href” code like normal.

        1. He might not have the super exclusive Wildcats iPhone like you do. Ever think that the rest of us do not share your lofty social status?

        2. I am no html wizard but does anyone else see the irony of SF giving advice on how to post links?

          1. You’ll pay for that one, Gilly.

            1. I am afraid.

        3. You’re right. But the slacker in me doesn’t feel like making the effort right now. I’ll make up for it later.

    3. Because the U.S. has never had the kind of bullet trains found in Europe and Asia, there are no U.S. engineering companies or manufacturers with experience in high-speed rail.

      There was a time when Europe and Asia didn’t have bullet trains either. And yet now they do have experienced manufacturers! I wonder how that happened.

      1. Visitors from space.

      2. I wonder how that happened.

        Probably from gobs of restrictions on air travel.

      3. Probably because due to sheer size, trains of any kind are much less viable in the US than in Europe.

        Also, I have no idea of any of the high-speed trains in Europe and Asia are actually economically viable.

        1. And the Japanese bullet train is slower than a car. Jeremy Clarkson showed us that.

          1. He was driving a GTR.

            1. And having a great time driving it too, IIRC.

              1. You could put that guy in a Yugo and he would probably have fun driving it. Or launching it out of a Mark 8 Landing Craft as a troop transport for a beach assault.

                Look at that! The smoke grenades fit perfectly in the cup holder.

                1. His excitement is infectious.

          2. And it was a train a bus and a ferry.

            1. *And* running up a hill.

              1. Insert Kate Bush joke here…

            2. “Is it green?….Why YES IT IS!”

              I should have taken the Porsche

              1. Best episode ever, followed by the one where they painted their cars and drove through the south in the US.

        2. Also, I have no idea of any of the high-speed trains in Europe and Asia are actually economically viable.

          The overall Japanese companies make an operating profit, on paper, though that includes profits from their conventional rail as well. That doesn’t include construction costs, which the government pays for.

          The Amtrak Inspector General wrote a paper saying that even the Japanese and French systems don’t really make an operating profit, because standard maintenance that ought to be included in operating costs is cost-shifted to be the responsibility of government through accounting fictions.

          The IG was then fired for daring to criticize the VP’s pet project.

  9. If I were a crazed statist, place-in-history-minded spendaholic, I’d announce that we’re going to have a permanent base on Mars by 2020. Look how much credit Kennedy gets for the Moon landings. Obama could announce that, get insane quantities of money from Congress, all while touting it as a massive jobs program and technology spin-off fest.

    1. Think of the delaying tactics pols could use waiting for those absentee ballots.

    2. Exactly. An aggressive space program would be something that I could actually get behind.

      Face it, they’re going to steal our money one way or the other. At least put the ill gotten gains to use in a way that may someday benefit mankind by allowing us to escapse this fucking mudball inhabited by psychotic apes.

      I want’s me an asteroid to call my own.

      1. 8 billion is almost enough for a launch loop, damn it.

    3. He could hire James Cameron to fake the whole thing. Need to keep that outsourcing to Canada a bigger secret than the faking.

    4. “Pro Libertate|1.26.10 @ 3:27PM|#
      I have a right to a ranch on Mars. With easy access to and from Earth.”
      I guess that makes you a crazed statist, place-in-history-minded spendaholic.

      1. I have a right to a ranch on Mars.

        Under the progressive reading of the Ninth Amendment, that would be a Constitutional right to a ranch on Mars.

        1. As R C Dean indirectly notes, that comment was a joke about stupid “rights” “found” in the Ninth Amendment.

          If you ask me, the private sector will get us into permanent space settlements way before government will. The writing is on the wall.

          1. All it takes is one resource worth the effort.

            1. Porn. Tourism.

              Cheap access is the grail. If people can get to places in the solar system without it costing trillions, we’ll find the resources and reasons we need for going.

              1. chicken or the egg argument.

                Resources have historically driven large migrations. Hence, the reasoning (drink) behind a resource with a positive net income being found.

              2. Who cares what it costs as long as it has a good ROI?

    5. Does this mean he has to take a a little drive in Dallas as well?

      1. No, but I suppose that martyrdom also played no small role in Kennedy being held up as some sort of ideal. Despite the problems of his presidency, and despite the fact that he was, by most of today’s standards, a solid Republican.

  10. DAVOS-Head of Davos security dead, police suspect suicide

    1. “A lot of folks have been reflecting on how Obama is doing after her first year.”

      Holy shit! They think he’s a chick!


      1. Michelle . . . who cares about the dude.

        1. kinnath, I think Kyle was talking about Michelle.

          1. I thought the correct, progressive pronoun was “herm.”

    2. LadySydney4 said:
      Great article! Obama has done some good things. It’s not like he can do everything at once, and remember who he has to clean up after.

      A year isn’t nearly enough time to get anything done! And if he doesn’t, it’s Bush’s fault! Yay!

  11. Obama to announce $8 billion high-speed rail project in State of the Union speech tonight

    President Obama to announce where the $8 billion that was already passed in the stimulus is actually being spent. It took the FRA that long to process applications.

    Also, plenty of the articles pretend that the Obama Administration came up with the idea for which corridors would be eligible, which it didn’t. It couldn’t, because the pace of Environmental Impact Statements (thanks to NEPA) is so slow. All they could do was provide funding for corridors that have mostly been designated since 1999 and been working on their EIS since then.

    1. Anyone here gonna actually watch the speech? I mean really, what’s the point?

        1. Every “I,” “let me be clear,” and “bank.”

        2. I’ve been out of college for a while now, not sure my liver is still capable of such a monumental task.

      1. I’m watching for entertainment value, specifically Bouncing Nancy. I say she completes at least 18 full cycles.

      2. I haven’t watched one minute of a State of the Union speech in years. A complete waste of time.

  12. James O’Keefe busted, and it’s not about ACORN.…..ce_arrests

  13. California’s proposal for an 800-mile-long rail line from Sacramento to San Diego and a nine-state proposal in the Midwest are also considered strong contenders.

    What a waste of money. Everyone knows the train will be destroyed when it is sabotaged on its inaugural trip by a disgruntled husband trying to kill his wife over an affair she had.

    1. They’re doing really well with the show so far.

      Hopefully they keep it up.

  14. Oh goody, I’ve always wanted a remake of Supertrain

  15. If I were a crazed statist, place-in-history-minded spendaholic, I’d announce that we’re going to have a permanent base on Mars by 2020.

    If you were a less crazed statist, you’d know that defunding adventury astronaut stuff appeals deeply to Today’s Woman, who hates “boy” (read “Dad”) things with a mindless ferocity seldom seen outside shark attacks, and she’s most of your voters.

    1. The mystique of NASA in the public perception pretty much vanished in the wake of the Lisa Nowak kidnapping incident. Astronauts blown to smithereens in the upper atmosphere is one thing; astronauts wearing diapers is another.

    2. It’s possible to feminize space exploration, I’m sure. Name a female head of NASA. Release studies indicating that women are superior physically on the Moon. Etc. Really, it would be quite easy.

      1. plus… zero-g/low-g boobs!

        1. Less wrinkling, too!

  16. Jefferson Memorial Dance Suit Dismissed

    A judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by a woman who was arrested in April 2008 for dancing at the Jefferson Memorial.

    U.S. District Judge John Bates stated in the court’s decision that the Park Service prohibits all demonstrations in the interior of the Jefferson Memorial, in order to maintain an “an atmosphere of calm, tranquility, and reverence,”

    The lawsuit stemmed from an incident with Mary Oberwetter and friends at the Jefferson Memorial on the evening of April 12, 2008.

    U.S. Park Police officers approached Oberwetter and others who were listening to music on headphones and dancing, and told them to stop.

    Oberwetter refused to stop and was arrested. Charges were eventually dropped.

    Oberwetter alleged that the arrest violated her right to free expression while the Park Service argued that the government has rights to regulate activities inside national memorials.

    1. This was posted yesterday. Try to keep up.

      1. Really? Radley did not even mention in The Agitator. I feel so last century now.

        1. No, we all feel last century. What else do you expect with $8 billion for trains and nothing for space ships?

          1. I think its a great idea!

  17. Obama to announce $8 billion high-speed rail project in State of the Union speech tonight.

    I see from the linked article one of the Orlando-Tampa corridor is in line for some of this largesse.

    That means I’ll be able to watch empty trains go by in the median while I drive down I-4.

    1. That train will NOT be empty. I will be there on the first day to take that train from Orlando to Tampa. In fact, the only time that the train will be empty is from the 2nd day of operation until they mercy kill it.

      1. You are a true patriot Lamar. Let me be clear – no matter how unrpofitable this light train is we will never shut it down. As long as Americans like Lamar make use of this rail system, the trains will continue to run.

        Intruder alert! Intruder alert! Destroy the human!

        1. I am humbled and honored. I would like to thank my fellow American compatriots for paying my fare. I will return the favor to this great nation in the area of health care … by reducing the portion of my health for which I care.

      2. Lamar,

        How can Disney allow this? They’ve opposed any easy access to Tampa for decades.

        1. I have no idea. There are some smoke-fill-room deals going on. Maybe Disney decided to scrap its bus system, or dedicate its buses to transporting people from its parks to its cruise lines. Or maybe they felt the deal was going to get done anyway and they wanted to be in a position to control the station locations.

          Their official line has something to do with the passage of SunRail and a viable commuter rail being a reality, and blah blah blah. The official story makes no sense.

          1. Disney is at its most dangerous when it doesn’t make any sense. Expect a terror act by a costumed employee.

      3. Come on Lamar, you know that that the Church of Mass Transit prohbits euthanasia – why do you think the Detroit People Mover is still running?

    2. Correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t the tracks/right of way on the north side of I-4? I’m not sure how much of the empty train you’ll actually have to see. Out of sight, out of mind……

    3. If they just built them in colder climates at least they would get regular use 5 months a year. When the bums ride the trains w/o paying to keep from freezing.

      Ya gotta look on the bright side of life.

      1. I feel compelled to qualify that I really don’t mind the bums ridding the trains to stay warm in the winter. I actually almost got arrested when a rent-a-cop got physical and belligerent with a homeless man who had no ticket. I was then threatened by a county cop with interfering with the police when I bought him a pass and handed it to him.

        Was a fun day all round.

    4. Liar! Nobody drives down I-4. You sit in gridlock and wait. Nothing more.

      1. Solution: Live downtown and put your offices in Maitland or Longwood (but not Altamonte). You get the added benefit of not getting shot or stabbed after work.

  18. British government’s chief scientific adviser says that claims about the extent and degree of climate change have been “exaggerated” by scientists. And he condemned those who refuse to publish full report data, adding that public confidence in climate science would be boosted by greater honesty about its uncertainties.”…..eddington/

  19. LOL< Lies lies and more lies. Not surprised.


    1. Anonyulliah!!! Oh great one.

  20. Are the SOTU addresses always on a Wednesday night? Won’t a lot of repubs be in church? Was it planned this way? Am I reading too much into this? Are my delusions finally getting the best of me?

  21. The adult diaper market in Japan is growing. Even fully continent Japanese do not frown on wetting themselves in public, using a diaper, when toilets are inconvenient: a group of diaper-wearing Japanese tourists made the front page of the New York Post on New Year’s Day 2008 when they agreed to pose for a publicity shot endorsing diapers as a solution to inadequate restroom facilities at the ball drop in Times Square. On September 25, 2008, Japanese manufacturers of adult diapers conducted the world’s first all-diaper fashion show, dramatizing throughout it many informative dramatic scenarios which addressed various issues relevant to older people in diapers. “It was great to see so many different types of diapers all in one showing,” said Aya Habuka, 26. “I learned a lot. This is the first time that diapers are being considered as fashion.”

    There are those who believe diapers are a preferable alternative to using the toilet. According to Dr Dipak Chatterjee of Mumbai newspaper Daily News and Analysis, public toilet facilities are so unhygienic that it is actually safer for people?especially women?who are vulnerable to infections to wear adult diapers instead. Seann Odoms of Men’s Health magazine believes that wearing diapers can help people of all ages to maintain healthy bowel function. He himself claims to wear diapers full-time for this purported health benefit. “Diapers,” he states, “are nothing other than a more practical and healthy form of underwear. They are the safe and healthy way of living.” Author Paul Davidson argues that it should be socially acceptable for everyone to wear diapers permanently, claiming that they provide freedom and remove the unnecessary hassle of going to the toilet, just as social advancement has offered solutions to other complications. He writes, “Make the elderly finally feel embraced instead of ridiculed and remove the teasing from the adolescent equation that affects so many children in a negative way. Give every person in this world the opportunity to live, learn, grow and urinate anywhere and anytime without societal pressure to “hold themselves in.””

    1. Xeones, stop posting under that silly fake handle. We all know it’s you.

  22. Train conspiracy theory: Obama’s administration is filled with aspies who want more train schedules to memorize.

  23. Obama aims to ax moon mission: When the White House releases Obama’s budget proposal, there will be no money for the Constellation program.

    1. Did anyone else read that as “Obama aims to tax moon mission?”

    2. I’d be fine with that if he’d also remove some of the regulatory barriers to private space travel. Constellation wasn’t a bad idea in concept–set a manned space flight goal–but in planning, it was and is a boondoggle.

  24. Obama lost Obamagirl

    Tell us we still have Lobster Girl.

    BTW, y’all really need to find her and interview her for Reason TV, just to get her response to her becoming the patron saint of libertarianism.

    1. Shouldn’t that be ‘batin saint?

    2. Shouldn’t that be ‘batin saint?

      1. Type with both hands and you’ll have fewer problems posting. 🙂

        Now, if we can get Lobster Girl in (then shedding) The Jacket…..

    3. I’d be more interested in Lobster Girl’s opinion. I hear enough from the “woe is me” people who voted for Hope and Change.

      1. I exchanged comments with Matt on this topic, and he said they were trying to find the Lobster Girl. For Urkoboldian purposes (she’s the Weibskobold, for insiders), we tried to find out who the model was a while back. The photograph was taken by Zuan, and it looks like it was taken during a Miss Hawaiian Tropic competition in Colombia. None of us being professional journalists, our knowledge ends there. I’m surprised Reason hasn’t announced her as a new editor or something.

        1. Oh I’m sure it’s not impossible. All you need is the proper motivation for Reddit or /b/ and you will know her bra size by 3pm.

    4. JL,

      Lobster Girl is at the bottom. I saved her for you with my HTML powers.

    5. It would be funny if she’s gained weight. My principal source of schadenfreud these days is looking up Facebook profiles of the girls who were out of my league in high school and seeing how they’ve chunked up.

      1. Is it more or less than you’ve chunked up?

      2. Just because you are too chicken to talk to the pretty girls is no reason to laugh at them when they are ugly enough for your lack of confidence. Shame on you Tulpa!

  25. Obama to announce $8 billion high-speed rail project in State of the Union speech tonight.

    The modern version of digging holes and then filling them back in.

  26. When He announces the High speed rail project, can we have a bit of Randy Rhodes to set the mood?

  27. I’d don’t know if anyone here has linked yet to the Keynes-Hayek rap video, but it’s a hoot.

    1. 2 days ago. First Suki, now CN. Hmmmm….

      What, are you actually working or something?

      1. Aw, crap.
        Yeah – I’m obviously spending far too much of my employer’s time productively instead of monitoring H&R. I vow to change!

        1. See? That kind of work ethic will get you nowhere.

        2. This thing spread like wild fire through academia.

  28. Maybe we could get China to build the train. They just finished a high speed train that hits a top speed of 394kph from Hankou to Guangzhou. The one from Beijing to Tianjin passes by our condo just across the street, and it is so quiet I don’t know it’s passing unless I see it.
    If high speed trains in the U.S. just dump passengers into the center of cities without satisfactory public transport or no way to get around conveniently, then we will all get the opportunity to see empty trains passing us on freeways. At least we can all take satisfaction in the number of jobs created or saved by construction.
    Construction, however, will no doubt be hindered or ended by the existence of some endangered insect living on the right of way.

  29. From the link about trusted news sources comes this laugh out loud line:

    These numbers suggest quite a shift in what Americans want from their news. A generation ago Walter Cronkite was the most trusted man in the country because of his neutrality. Now people trust Fox the most precisely because of its lack of neutrality. It says a lot about where journalism is headed.

    Leaving aside the fact that the poll didn’t ask WHY people trusted the networks they did, and thus the pollster has no justification for the slam on FoxNews, the idea that Cronkite was neutral is laughable.

    1. Indeed. And as for him being the most trusted man in America, the country was far more naive and less well informed back then as compared to today.

    2. I don’t think any reasonably intelligent or observant person would have any doubt that FoxNews’ poll scores are impacted at least somewhat by self-selection of the audience.

      This is probably true of all the networks, but in Fox’s case the impact has to be greater due to the large amount of free affinity marketing that is done on their behalf by various bit-players in the conservative movement.

  30. Obama to announce $8 billion high-speed rail project in State of the Union speech tonight.


  31. Obama to announce $8 billion high-speed rail project in State of the Union speech tonight.

    Pussy. When do we get our Bearing Strait bridge?

    1. Big deal. Where is the space elevator?





    1. You are really SugarFree? Should have known by the Wildcat fan phrasing. Sigh.

  33. Ya, it’s on again.

  34. Here’s a little word of advice for all you hikers: next time, take the train.



  36. Those letters aren’t real anyhow. That kind of thing never happens to regular guys.

  37. It cannot be said often enough.


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