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Those crazy French and their silly little choo choo train

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Stinky The Clown Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-03-07 02:42 PM
Original message
Those crazy French and their silly little choo choo train
TGV slams world speed record

On standard railway track (as opposed to Japan's new maglev trains) the venerable TGV reached 574 clicks (about 350 mph) in a test.

Meanwhile, here in the US, we have ....... what, exactly, in the way of high speed, modern, long distance trains? Zip and nada.
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Selatius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-03-07 02:45 PM
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1. We have the interstate and city freeways. Ever seen the LA freeway?
In America, it seems we excel at mediocrity.
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spooky3 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-03-07 02:58 PM
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2. We don't wanna pay for them.
In Europe trains are subsidized by taxes because they are for the common good.

Here, we believe trains should somehow be self-supporting, even while we use taxes to build highways and air terminals, and help out the airlines. But we just can't bring ourselves to pull the $ together necessary for a really good rail system, either within most cities or between them.

To be more fair, cities are more spread out here than in Europe, making the same services more expensive.
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TheBaldyMan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-03-07 03:39 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. actually, rail is cheaper over long distances than road.
water freight is even cheaper.

The US is crazy, it already has an extensive rail network and is barely using it.
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Selatius Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-03-07 03:48 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. This is why freight rail still exists. Otherwise, they'd all ship goods by truck instead of train.
But the road and car lobbies have been on Capitol Hill for most of the 20th century. Their pockets are vast and their friends are many.
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Eurobabe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-03-07 03:04 PM
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3. NIMBY syndrome in the USA
No trains like that in MY BACK YARD!!
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TheBaldyMan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-03-07 03:36 PM
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4. Holy crap, I've been on one but it was only doing 200 mph
Vive La France, one country that really values engineering - especially high tech engineering.
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KOBUK Donating Member (103 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-03-07 04:47 PM
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7. California has sent a delegation to France to gather information on that train.
Considering the feasibility of such a train from LA TO SF
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