The Secret Worldwide Transit Cabal

Informed but opinionated commentary and analysis on urban transportation topics from the Secret Worldwide Transit Cabal. Names have been omitted to protect the guilty.

Our Mission: Monkeywrench the Anti-Transit Forces

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Monday, May 05, 2003


Home of More Transit Links Than You can Possibly Check(tm), Unless you have no life other than websurfing

"Truth passes through three phases: 1) It is ridiculed. 2) It is violently opposed. 3) It is accepted as self-evident." Albert Schopenhouer. In the United States, rail is currently passing through Phase Two.

From the Cabalmaster:

Robert W. Rynerson penned these pithy paragraphs, part of a piece published in Issue 649, Rail Travel News (August 31, 2002): "Across an Imagined German Border." (Rynerson, worked for the U.S. Army Rail Transportation Office, Berlin Brigade, in summer 1969

After describing the remarkable improvements in service frequency and speed along the rail line in eastern Germany used by the former Military Trains, Rynerson writes:

"No clever new proprietary technology is involved. The secret to the improvement between the old Germany and the new is that the old Reichsbahn was run remarkably like some American railroads: ripped up second main tracks, speed restrictions due to crumbling roadbeds and maintenance budget cutbacks, obsolete equipment, outdated signals and no electrification outside of the pre-WWII projects. The new service is on the same right-of-way as the old, and constructed with off-the-shelf components. It involves track and roadbed improvements, electrification, and stations and passenger rolling stock designed to speed up boarding and alighting.

"Of course, the situations are different. The Reichsbahn was ravaged by war and the post-War Soviet reparations. The U.S. railroads were ravaged by government policies and quarterly-report shareholders. Effects were almost identical."

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