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, July 12, 2004

 
WE’RE NOT THE ONLY ONES WHO SHOULD QUIT WHILE WE’RE AHEAD!

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

Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity: and I'm not so sure about the universe. Einstein


From the Cabalmaster:

[aka “RANDAL O’TOOLE IS OUT IN THE WOODS – AGAIN!”] PART 1:

The Secret Worldwide Transit Cabal explains it all for you!

Denver opened its first light rail line in 1994, opened a southward extension to Littleton in 2000 and a spur to Union Station in 2002, and plans to have the major extension (the T-REX project /www.trexproject.com ) completed by late 2006.

In April 2004, the Federal Transit Administration approved the Environmental Impact Statement for the planned West Corridor light rail line, to connect Denver with Golden.

The Regional Transportation District, the Colorado Department of Transportation and the Denver Regional Council of Governments completed a multi-year study project of major transportation corridors . Recommendation: 119 miles of new “rapid transit” (commuter rail, light rail, bus rapid transit), purchase of land to permit relocation of freight trains away from residential areas, bus service expansion, doubling of park-and-ride capacity, and development of Union Station as an intermodal hub. The local share of financing would be raised by a sales tax increase of 0.4 percent. The plan, dubbed “FasTracks” (www.fastracks.org was approved unanimously by the RTD Board and will appear on the November 2, 2004 ballot.

Can you imagine Randal O’Toole, self-styled (and more than slightly acerbic) urban transportation expert, arch-foe of rail transit and one of our favorite targets for riposte and ridicule, letting all this pass without comment?

NOT BY THE HAIRS ON HIS CHINNY-CHIN CHIN!
www.independent.org/tii/forums/011003ipf2.html

Instead . . .

HE’LL HUFF, AND HE’LL PUFF . . .
AND HE’LL HUFF, AND HE’LL PUFF . . .

JUST WHAT YOU’D EXPECT
FROM A STEAM TRAIN BUFF*!

(*”alleged” steam train buff** . . . good ol’ Randal has not responded to an earlier post – with newspaper citation www.tri-cityherald.com/news/2002/1023/Story1.html.)

(**Online evidence suggests that the “allegation” is true! Check out this link, www.sps700.org/gall0210mont_part5.html, scroll to the very bottom, and note the photo captioned “Randal O'Toole (wearing white cap)- selling books dawn til' dusk.” The face is a bit blurry . . . but the beard is unmistakable!! www.independent.org/tii/forums/011003ipf2.html And remember: you saw it first on our blog!!!)

Now that we’ve finished our obligatory . . . and weak . . . attempt at comedy (although it did “bring down the house” at Line’s End™, the (very) secret (very) hidden™ retreat of The Secret Worldwide Transit Cabal™) . . . we feel obliged to insert a disclaimer. We are, after all, a TRANSIT cabal . . . NOT a RAIL cabal . . . contrary to the pernicious propaganda purveyed in perpetuity by certain SAP™s.

We tend to support rail transit because it can provide high-quality alternatives to private autos. However, rail costs big bucks to build. So it’s perfectly legitimate to question, through honest inquiry, honest research and honest debate, whether costs are justified by benefits. The key word here is “honest.” However, certain “SAPpy™” individuals, who can’t stand the “’r’ word” for reasons of ideology or (gasp!) self-interest, resort to all sorts of distortion and deception.

Now, back to Denver . . .

Among American transit agencies, RTD is unusual because it has a directly-elected board. Some years back, a faction of Coneheads . . . er, Libertarians . . . got elected to the Board. Contrary to what they’d want to you to believe, they didn’t exactly shout anti-rail slogans during the campaign. The Conehead . . . er, Libertarian . . . candidates downplayed both their political philosophy and their intent to terminate light rail development. Their attempts at the latter caused a political brouhaha, and voters eventually booted the Remulac . . . er, Libertarian . . . faction off the RTD board.

We’ll continue this story in our next post.

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