I see we are having another "Why doesn't the U.S. have interstate highways" Day. Why don't we have highways?

- the U.S. is very large
- the U.S. has property rights
- our infrastructure unions are corrupt
- we have tedious regulations
- Car manufacturer are terrible

The list goes on...

@petra it’s making fun of the “HSR is impossible” people, because most of their arguments go both ways

@petra not that there aren’t political and cultural barriers to high speed rail...

@cinebox To me it's more a question of how we got the Interstate Highway System than how we can't get a high speed rail system. There was a confluence of political factors that made it possible to sell it to multiple constituencies: military, aviation, car makers, gas companies. I'm not sure which special interests will bribe the right congresspeople to make high speed rail happen. Steel has very little power here these days. Are there even any American makers of high speed trains?

@cinebox The Interstate Highway System, along with the domestic airlines and trucking companies, are also big barriers in the way of building high speed rail here. And it's not just a question of property rights but of all the different state and local governments that can't just be overridden. That was a big challenge for the Interstates as well, but it certainly hasn't gotten better in the meantime.

@cinebox Maybe if Trump gets reelected someone will convince him that it'd be a good way to revitalize American manufacturing? I could see Sanders or Warren trying it, too. But not Biden. And whoever it is they'll probably get strong opposition from the other party and the other party's states, because even if each party might come up with separate reasons to support it, they won't do it together.

@freakazoid honestly it’s depressing that the guy literally known for commuting by train is too centrist to push for improved rail in the US

@cinebox I had been hoping quiet, small jets like the Eclipse 500 would revolutionize regional transport, but the economics haven't seemed to work out, largely because smaller airports wouldn't make an exception to the "no jets" rule even though they are quieter than most prop planes. Electric planes won't have this problem so the big barrier will be NIMBYs objecting to more air traffic.

@freakazoid don’t the props themselves make a lot of noise even on electric planes?

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