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Thom Hartmann Vs. Conservative: Investing in Infrastructure…

Thom Hartmann Vs. Conservative: Investing in Infrastructure…


on the line with us from the Heritage
Foundation heritage .org is Michael Sargent research assistant and Thomas at the
year Thomas a row institute for Economic policy and policy studies at the
Heritage Foundation and the author of a new PC can find over
heritage dot s exiting a daily signal dot com a
publication heritage foundation titled ignore politicians sane amtrak
crash is proof more funding is needed we first need to know more Michael welcome to the program
thanks for having me Tom thanks for joining us arm isn’t isn’t
that argument the year making sorta like my making the argument that is no big deal that your
brother-in-law died when he was impaled by the steering
wheel love his 1955 Chevy up because it was working just fine
track I mean look Tom we still had absolutely no idea what
caused the crash at that point what any details
surrounding it was a need for a 60-year-old technology pics here well as a at that point we
still did not know what happened and we only have members
of congress come out and say this is a direct result funding never mind that the train it is the speed limit it is you’ve got you we
have we I this is this is a national
embarrassment Michael in this is what I don’t understand about about how it conservatives and
Republicans in particular don’t understand the difference between
spending and investing we lose a hundred million
dollars a day when the northeast corner shutdown Amtrak doesn’t lose it we all lose it because because I’ve the
diminished economic activity in China right now they’ve got high
speed trains are going 328 miles an hour Japan you get high-speed trains are
averaging 230 miles an hour the high-speed trains in Europe for
average and a .917 240 miles an hour and you’re sitting here telling me that
a train that has to go 55 miles an hour around a curve in an average is 79 miles
an hour is just fine for america custer how America we don’t care if this
country’s competitive well Tom but I think you can’t compare
America to Japan to europe we’ve completely different I density
yeah thirty-five years a reaganomics has
destroyed our country while they’ve taken our job site but also to what
would you say what would you tell me s you know if this happened I came out and
said government mismanagement caused this crash when you say we have
to stick see what happened I think that that is
that you you really have to look at the details I don’t think you have to be a
rocket science aside as Michael I mean you point out in your article that the
the I 35 bridge in Minneapolis that that fell down armed and a bridge on
Washington State the fell down were were not specifically the consequence above they’re being aging infrastructure
that the one in Washington had an oversized truck going over it the one in
Minnesota had cracks that nobody knew about but they’re both more than 50 years old
I mean it that we have to eat when you invest in your infrastructure when you invest
in your country you are providing the soil in which business grows I’m I’m doing business here the show is
a business I can’t do without infrastructure II need decent broadband I need roads to
get here and back I need up but post office that will deliver you know the the check from my
advertiser a bit there’s there’s there’s all kinds of infrastructure that that every business in america
needs and you’re arguing for 19th or early 20th century
infrastructure in the 21st century and understand why
Tom an absolutely not I agree with you infrastructure is vital but it’s how we
provide it we have to be able to modernize and the
current mechanism that we are doing that funneling tax dollars through the
federal government is not the most efficient way we can accomplish that so you think that we should give it to
the Koch brothers not the billionaires by the railroads I think that private companies could
handle I transportation infrastructure much better than the government had you know I used to live in Denver on I
used to take the reminder to and from New York City and while most to the Northeast Corridor
the tracks are owned by Amtrak in congress is not seen fit to provide them with enough
money to upgrade those tracks arm on the Vermonter a lot of the tracks
were owned by four different private railroad companies that were on the
freight business and they didn’t give a rats ass about
about passenger rail and so we had to go like a hundred miles
on our way over to Springfield Missouri and make a turn in your own thirty miles
an hour party the way all because we’re it had been privatized there are some things that particularly
when it comes to infrastructure they’re appropriately done by government taxpayers dollars again this goes back
to my thing what don’t you get about the difference between an investment an
expense you put a billion dollars into
infrastructure as dwight eisenhower’s elite white aznar put in today’s dollars
almost a trillion dollars in the infrastructure the interstate highway
system and he made back in today’s dollars
probably forty or fifty trillion dollars in tax revenue from the increased
economic activity as a consequence that that’s what China is doing it for
japan’s doing that’s what every every advance European country has done
why are we so stupid Michael all the problem is that your you’re
right we have to go to congress if amtrak was private and they would be
able to close the lines that are losing money and then be able to take down reinvest
in lines quite possibly the matter that actually could be operable the way that way to say are
you trying to tell me that infrastructure should make money and he has to buy mean by the eurozone
do you think that the road he do to easing mass Avenue on from the heritage
foundation and and and the studio which is next door do you think that that road should make
money it provides local tax dollars through property taxes and then all the
business taxes around it it makes money by facilitating commerce
if Amtrak ran at a hundred percent loss it would still make a profit for the
united states government because it is stimulating business amtrak does not stimulate
business Tom II you serious if he does not the
northeast corner is the only one that is viable commuters do not take Amtrak
pretty much anywhere else and and Andrew and three maybe that’s
because ames run half for on long-distance lines with
hemorrhage money it it is not a commercially viable
enterprise it doesn’t have to be commercially
viable Michael its infrastructure when people travel you know they’re they’re you even if
even a suburb is immune to people because baru Gua Gua give you know the long haul
Amtrak lines are probably most people take vacations when the taking those occasions are
staying in hotels those hotels are paying tax dollars there be eating in restaurants as restaurants
are paying tax on large at the and and and to the extent to which our real is not used by by a you know a.m. as as you point out is not heavily use
go to Europe go to Japan go to China China in five
years built a a high-speed rail the runs almost
three hundred miles an hour equal in a Chicago to New York it took
five years to build that is creating an economic explosion in China and it and and they don’t care about
that rail system makes a penny cuz its stimulating their economy that’s
what infrastructure does sure but if you’re
if you’re making that argument and they’re much cheaper ways much cheaper infrastructure that can
stimulate the economy that way look at road that’s why I amtrak has such a hard time on the long
haul I routes because you have people that take
the interstate it’s much cheaper its easier for everyone you have much
more convenient we they are stimulating the economy to travel and they’re taking
the interstate Amtrak is not a viable way it up
inconvenient it’s only on time as it is right now as it is right now a daddy funded by 35
years a reaganomics a yes outside the Northeast Corridor
sure so let’s go back you know we were the envy the
world you know the Lincoln link in biz actually built the railroads
and in all those dollars all that money off the J goldin his buddies Sanderson
those guys you know the the golden spike in
eighteen was a 64 67 arm it we had and and that rail
infrastructure that we had facilitated the industrial revolution that that turn America into the in real the
world and then you know when when reaganism came in and we sand and and idiots in congress couldn’t figure out
the difference between and investment and expense it was like oh we can’t
afford to pay for this of course we can’t afford not to it will
generate more tax dollars than it costs if it’s done right well I don’t know about you but i wanna
look back to the infrastructure the eighteen sixties I’d rather look to the
future we have self-driving cars coming out
they need roads that are able to operate we should not keep taking money it’s
inefficient bigoted its inefficient Michael you know
it have you seen a CSS X ads you can move you know a ton of
freight 400 miles on a single gallon fuel yep that’s another thing are frayed is
that all rail freight is miles ahead of europe it’s really hard to make these
comparisons on a macro level because we’re just completely different place we
r much more spread out in Europe China and Japan we just have a
completely different system a completely different economy and try to make these comparisons is
really you have to take it on cable if you’re if you’re if you’re making a case for you know
Amtrak from Chicago to Los Angeles I might I disagree with you but there
are large parts of the United States where well any I think we both had our Cesar
this Michael Michael Sargent heee I appreciate your
good natured back thank you for figure not taken effect
michael’s argue with the heritage foundation heritage .org his new piece
which is over the daily signal I paid daily signal that comp ignore politicians thank you Michael

Comments (23)

  1. How many people would ride an American transcontinental 350mph mag lev train?

  2. Fuck the Heritage Foundation!

  3. I have used the Massachusetts commuter rail system for many years and can truthfully report that it is no longer reliable due to neglect on the part of Amtrak. As the main system crumbles and falls apart, so go the local systems with it. This is intentional. I really believe that the entities responsible for funding maintenance of the government owned rails WANT to see fewer paying passengers on Amtrak and that they are willing to jeopardize human lives ( taxpayers lives ) in order to discourage train travel and promote private car usage thus boosting oil/gasoline revenues.  Follow the big-oil lobbying cash trail. It's a deadly disgrace.

  4. LOL from Heritage

  5. Thom please call it the K0CH funded Heritage Foundation.
    We need more truth.

  6. These K0CHsuckers want nothing less than the complete sale of all government owned or supported entities to the highest bidders.

  7. Part of the K0CH Taliban Platform that deals with this video talk:
    • “We call for the dissolution of all government agencies concerned with transportation, including the Department of Transportation.”
    • “We demand the return of America's railroad system to private ownership. We call for the privatization of the public roads and national highway system.”
    • “We call for the privatization of the inland waterways, and of the distribution system that brings water to industry, agriculture and households.”

    The rest of the K0CHsucker Taliban platform:

    • We urge the repeal of federal campaign finance laws, and the immediate abolition of the despotic Federal Election Commission.”
    • “We favor the abolition of Medicare and Medicaid programs.”
    • “We oppose any compulsory insurance or tax-supported plan to provide health services, including those which finance abortion services.”
    • “We also favor the deregulation of the medical insurance industry.”
    • “We favor the repeal of the fraudulent, virtually bankrupt, and increasingly oppressive Social Security system. Pending that repeal, participation in Social Security should be made voluntary.”
    • “We propose the abolition of the governmental Postal Service. The present system, in addition to being inefficient, encourages governmental surveillance of private correspondence. Pending abolition, we call for an end to the monopoly system and for allowing free competition in all aspects of postal service.”
    • “We oppose all personal and corporate income taxation, including capital gains taxes.”
    • “We support the eventual repeal of all taxation.”
    • “As an interim measure, all criminal and civil sanctions against tax evasion should be terminated immediately.”
    • “We support repeal of all law which impede the ability of any person to find employment, such as minimum wage laws.”
    • “We advocate the complete separation of education and State. Government schools lead to the indoctrination of children and interfere with the free choice of individuals. Government ownership, operation, regulation, and subsidy of schools and colleges should be ended.”
    • “We condemn compulsory education laws … and we call for the immediate repeal of such laws.”
    • “We support the repeal of all taxes on the income or property of private schools, whether profit or non-profit.”
    • “We support the abolition of the Environmental Protection Agency.”
    • “We support abolition of the Department of Energy.”
    • “We call for the dissolution of all government agencies concerned with transportation, including the Department of Transportation.”
    • “We demand the return of America's railroad system to private ownership. We call for the privatization of the public roads and national highway system.”
    • “We specifically oppose laws requiring an individual to buy or use so-called "self-protection" equipment such as safety belts, air bags, or crash helmets.”
    • “We advocate the abolition of the Federal Aviation Administration.”
    • “We advocate the abolition of the Food and Drug Administration.”
    • “We support an end to all subsidies for child-bearing built into our present laws, including all welfare plans and the provision of tax-supported services for children.”
    • “We oppose all government welfare, relief projects, and ‘aid to the poor’ programs. All these government programs are privacy-invading, paternalistic, demeaning, and inefficient. The proper source of help for such persons is the voluntary efforts of private groups and individuals.”
    • “We call for the privatization of the inland waterways, and of the distribution system that brings water to industry, agriculture and households.”
    • “We call for the repeal of the Occupational Safety and Health Act.”
    • “We call for the abolition of the Consumer Product Safety Commission.”
    • “We support the repeal of all state usury laws.”

    Every single one of these ideas is rooted in John Birch Society dogma. His sons are just expanding capacity for them now, not abandoning their principles. 
    Keep this list handy. You're going to need it in the days to come.

  8. If trains were faster and more available then more people would use them… Right now they are slow as shit so people drive.

  9. Republicans are always prattling on about "helping business".  If you can get products to market in 1/3 to 1/2 the time, you can make more profits…

  10. I love how many people think Amtrak should be privatized. You know what happened when our passenger railway system was in private hands? it was what railroads called a "loss leader" – it made zero money on its own and was used almost exclusively to improve their image for people using their freight transport business. The railroads got sick and tired of being required by law to run passenger trains, and they downgraded them and scared people away ON PURPOSE to convince Congress to drop the requirement. That's when Amtrak got formed! Private passenger rail in the U.S. (and most other places) is a big JOKE.

  11. Ignore politicians? Sure, let's start with the Heritage Foundation.

  12. Google CEO's in prison ad then tell me about privatizing

  13. people don't take Amtrak because it's shit. if he was as comfortable as fast and efficient as European and Japan I would have taken train over airplane any day unless it's really far as you said like Chicago to LA. so that guy can go and choke himself.

  14. This guy is full of it. Europe does more within its international bounds than we do. We actually have it easier over here but none of the political will.

  15. My goodness, this arrogant punk who obviously hadn't worked one honest day in his life has a say in our public policy? I have been asleep for far too long.

  16. lol yet another conservative who sees the cost of everything and the value of nothing

  17. 100 miles to Springfield, Missouri? Thom, you might want to clarify, Springfield, Massachusetts.

  18. The interstate is not cheaper. Take Amtrak through Illinois to Chicago. You'd spend more on gas alone than an Amtrak ticket.

  19. Thom forgets that in China they can just take your property for their rail roads.

  20. Michael Sargent — professional Koch-stroker…who is going to take ownership of passenger rail today outside of Boston-Washington and maybe San Diego-San Francisco? They slowly killed rail on behest of the automobile & airline industries. These privatization advocates are completely transparent stooges for predatory billionaires…same with our roads — charge tolls, allow maintenance to go to hell, then drop them back in the taxpayer's lap when they crumble…same with charter schools, nursing homes, rental properties, etc…vampires bleeding us white…

  21. It's not stupidity it's greed

  22. They take the interstate because Amtrak is antiquated. Duh

  23. Let's privatize the Fire Departments.

    "Your apartment block is on fire?" "Where is it?"

    "Sorry, we calculated the profit margin and it does not pay off. We will go to extinguish a lawn fire in George Clooney's garden, that is more profitable."

    "We could come when you quintuple the payment. Please contact your insurance company whether that is a reasonable deal for it."

    "Have you spoken with them? We need a written agreement from your insurance company."

    "OK we have receivied the agreement via e-mail, we will come. Please be informed we have abolished the ladder trucks, they were costly to operate. Tell your people to jump out of the window."

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