Thursday, February 26, 2009

File Under, Are You Serious???!!

I just couldn't help myself. I had to share these two insane articles with you all. I keep telling myself I'm not going to post this drivel, but these are pure comedy.

Randall O'Toole - Save Washington Metro by Privatizing It
Reason Online - Rant against the Cinci streetcar, comparing it to a monorail

A good measure of our success over the next 4 years will be how crazy we can make these guys. Looks like we're off to a good start.


jon said...

i've had this 'are you serious' reaction all week to so many things, probably more this week than anytime i can remember, all regarding things right wing wackos have said on their journey off the deep end.

doesnt surprise me at all, and nevermind all the stuff over the maglev issue.

just saw an article about rail where a reason ideologue was saying the US isnt made for rail.

i'm sorry i refuse to give these guys a hit on their website

Dave Murphy said...

Privatizing the Metro might help with the multi-jurisdictional issues that it has... but it all goes downhill from there. Ugh what an awful idea.

Justin said...

No matter how many articles I read from Mr. O'Otoole, I am always speechless. Yeesh!
I wonder if he is at CPAC this week?

kenf said...

Randall de Fool strikes again.

Cavan said...

Privatize the Metro!?!? Who would buy such a money-losing venture? This guy is nuts. That's the quickest way to close the thing down that I can think of.

I wish the Examiner would get rid of all the right-wing nutjobs they have doing their opinion pieces. Their news is sorta ok, but their opinion pieces are not just right wing hacks, but lying right-wing hacks.

beyonddc said...

I'm embarrassed for the Examiner. Publishing a nutjob like O'Toole makes them seem less a real newspaper and more a tabloid.

Anonymous said...

Having Randall O'Toole commenting on transit is like having the head of the KKK commenting on the positive aspects of interracial marriage."

EvergreenRailfan said...

I wonder if he publishes that as he is seeing a losing battle. In the lead up to Sound Transit putting ST2.1 on the ballot last year, Dave Ross, a local talk show host(down the middle by the way, calls himself the "Crusader for Common Sense", but ran for Congress as a Democrat in our 8th District in 2004, lost by 15,000 votes) had O'Toole on, with O'Toole's bread and butter attack, Portland messed up Portland by adopting Light Rail and he is out to save the country from the same mistake. That and he had counterpart(use the term loosely) talk show host in Portland Lars Larson on saying how it was a crime magnet.

Dave Ross is a well-listened show, maybe that is why on the second time around, Sound Transit expansion passed so overwhelmingly, that and the roads portion was not in it, and the LINK Light Rapid Transit starter segment is rushing to completion, and in full view of commuters on Interstate 5 near Tukwilla. On a local forum, a person asked me about a secret railroad in the area around the old Ranier Brewery in the South Of Downtown area in Seattle, and the description included the wave paintjob on the cars. I told him, you just saw tha supposedly not under construction LRT line!

Robert said...

From O'Toole's Piece:

"KEY DATA: Americans spend 15 cents per passenger mile flying, 24 cents driving, and 80 cents on urban transit."

Number 1: The cost of driving is wildly low. Even the variable fees are higher. For example:

Depreciation: $15,000 for a new car that can go 150,000 miles 10 cents per mile

Gas: 30 miles per gallon; $3.50 a gallon. 11.6 cents per mile

Tires: $400 bucks, including installation. That will take you 30,000 miles. 1.3 cents per mile

These tires and the car are about as cheap as you're going to get and the gas price is lower than we should expect by summertime 2009 and already I'm sitting at 23 cents per mile to drive. And I haven't included:

-- Maintenance, oil changes, car washes
-- Parking
-- Insurance
-- Registration fees
-- GM, Ford, Chrysler bailouts
-- The social cost of an overweight population that doesn't walk anywhere anymore

Hmm...what am I forgetting? Oh, the roads.


EvergreenRailfan said...


Interesting on the facts that were left out. I know that O'Toole loves to use Portland as an example of a failure, but he ignores facts about TriMet. As the new Type4 LRVs arrive, they are not retiring the obsolete Type 1s, not when they feel they can get another 20 years out of them, even though being high-floor, they have to run with a Type 2, Type 3, or Type 4. I am surprised they did not go for the gold with the refurbishing, dropping in a low-floor section. Still, the FTA requires 25 year life of LRVs, the Type 1s date back to 1986(when MAX started), that gives them up to 45 years under the current plan.

Matt Fisher said...

O'Toole is a drone. Case closed. I shouldn't be (fully) obliged to write it in every week!

Saying "we have to privatize the Metro in order to save it" is like saying, "We have to go to war with Iraq, in order to bring peace to the Middle East" and also for "spreading freedom and democracy". This war was really about oil and occupation.

The FTA's mandatory LRV life expectancy of 25 years is not high enough. It should be raised.

Finally, that idiot Lars Larson was convinced WALL-E was "pro-environment propaganda". He also directed some rage against Michael Moore. What a craphead.

EvergreenRailfan said...

It's one of the reasons I used the term loosely counterpart for our local host here in Seattle. KIRO's local hosts give varrying opinions. Noon-3, Dori Monson, pretty much same as Larson, Dave Ross(9-Noon), in a class by himself, and at least gives it the benefit of the doubt. LINK LRT lost some of it's support during the doldrum years between when it should have started construction, and when it did, but it has regained the trust, and one over some of the critics, who belatedly in the period after last year's vote, and the impending startup of operations(July 3), and start of construction on U-LINK, have admitted they lost.(Mainly the former State GOP chair)

I tend to look at the Macro picture as well. Some say Portland, Seattle, and Vanocuver(B.C) are really part of the same Megalopolis, Pugetopolis, and with Amtrak Cascades, they might be right. Amtrak Cascades links the cities, the various types of Light Rail in the three cities(Whether the Advanced Light Rapid Transit in Vancouver, Light Rapid Transit in Seattle, and Portland's MAX) do the local/intraregional connections. Amtrak Cascades is a project that started small, and continues to grow. I was by King Street Station, and the renovation work is proceeding pretty good, the only barrier to seamless connection between Amtrak/Sounder and LINK? The Crosswalk between King Street Station and International District Station, got to cross 4th Avenue, which is the busy entrance to Downtown Seattle, from the south.