On the bad investment decisions the government is making on

Michael Barone has some useful numbers and points to remember available here. $67 billion for 160 miles? $420 million per mile?

It hasn't failed because of a lack of willingness to pony up money. The Obama Democrats' February 2009 stimulus package included $8 billion for high-speed rail projects. The Democratic Congress appropriated another $2.5 billion.

But Congress is turning off the spigot. The Republican-controlled House has appropriated zero dollars for high-speed rail. The Democratic-majority Senate Appropriations Committee has appropriated $100 million in its budget recommendation. . . .

The feds insist California build a 160-mile segment in the Central Valley that is estimated to cost at least $10 billion and will have virtually no riders. The estimated cost of the whole project has zoomed from $43 billion to $67 billion, and there seems to be no prospect of any more public- or private-sector money. . . .

UPDATE: This is an entirely instate route. Why should there be any federal funding? From the WSJ:

The Obama administration's push for high-speed trains is foundering, as Congress moves to clamp down on funding and a showcase California project encounters new hurdles. . . . Florida canceled a planned Tampa-to-Orlando route in February.

California envisioned a $45 billion high-speed system extending from San Francisco to Southern California, with trains running by 2020. The state's original business model assumed it would get one-third of its funding from the federal government, although it received no such commitment. So far, the project has received roughly $3 billion from the U.S. government, with little more likely to come. . . .

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