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Why high-speed rail makes no sense. Key quote:
High-speed rail would transform Amtrak’s small drain [on the government] into a much larger drain. Once built, high-speed rail systems would face a dilemma. To recoup initial capital costs — construction and train purchases — ticket prices would have to be set so high that few people would choose rail. But lower prices, even with favorable passenger loads, might not cover costs. Government would be stuck with huge subsidies. Even without recovering capital costs, high-speed rail systems would probably run in the red. Most mass-transit systems, despite high ridership, routinely have deficits.