Bob's Links and Rants

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Wednesday, June 07, 2006

The war on mass transit

In this country, the destruction of mass transit had been a slow, evolving thing--a public-private partnership. There have been massive subsidies for highways at the insistence of AAA and auto-industry lobbyists; the alleged conspiracy led by GM to destroy streetcar systems; the withering on the vine of Amtrak, expected to turn a profit while competing with massively-subsidized highways and airlines; the failure of twentieth-century land planning and the positive encouragement by government for the growth of suburban sprawl, creating a landscape which can only be navigated with private vehicles.

On the other hand, mass transit in Iraq is under a more direct and rapid assault. In just the past few days:
Then again, things haven't been that great for traveling by private vehicle, either. Ethnic cleansing activities are forcing thousands of Iraqis to be on the move, but attacks by Sunni, Shiite and American insurgents make that, and everything else, dangerous.