Sunday, July 06, 2008

So My Letter to the Editor Was Not Printed

Recently the Indianpolis Star published articles and columns describing ideas and challenges concerning a commuter rail line to be installed along the busy commuter corridor in metro Indianapolis. This is an idea I support. It inspired me to send an email to the paper spotlighting a huge blind spot in the articles and opinion columns. My response was not published as I found out it made sense, was not completely retarded, and brought up a fact that no one wanted to address because it did not fit perfectly into the desired narrative of the newspaper or act as a knee jerk, stereotypical reader response. The author published a second collection of emaislt hat were not as positive to the idea. It bummed me out because I looked over my email, and realized I did not sound like a hick with overalls on or a lattee sipping, liberal geebo who spits on veterans.

The crux of my argument was that to ask taxpayers at this point in time in the economic cycle to fork over some extra dough for a commuter rial line that for the first few years will only help one section of the suburbs is asking for trouble. That is pissing up a rope in Dad-ese. A solution is to act in a similar manner as the governor did with the toll road in the northern section of the state: sell it to the highest bidder. Let them take care of it, run it, collect cash from it and make it work. All the while, the state earns a hefty fee from renting that road out. Put the idea for a commuter rail up to the highest bidder. Let some private company figure out how to make a profit from it. That is probably the only way an efficient system will be put in place with stops in the prime locations to induce the most users. Allow for something ridiculisu like a tax break the first few years to help it get to breakeven quick and allow for expansion. A government program is just going to create headaches about where stops are located, what do the government workers get paid, how many trains get run & at what times.... it would be endless. Even worse would be the government going back to the people ever so often for more funding. This was mentioned nowhere in the columns or editorials. The debate framed by the paper was should we or should weo not do this... not "how can we make this beneficial for people in a total rewards manner". I guess original ideas are not welcome to the debate.

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