Why can't the US build basic rail?

#41
This is just populist twaddle. What do you actually know about the jurisprudence or content of US discrimination cases which justifies your view that most discrimination complainants are just self-entitled whingers?

Chucking lazy stereotypes at the French doesn't help you much either. If SNCF staff have been rude to you (which I'm guessing they haven't, because I'm guessing you've never actually travelled on a French railway), you might ask yourself whether you did anything to deserve it.
Unions can definitely be obstinate and strike-prone. Look at the dispute about guards in UK, that has gone on for over a year. Enough already.
 

Iraq Bruin

Ad Honorem
Oct 2010
4,844
DC
#42
This is just populist twaddle.
As you wish, have at it.
What do you actually know about the jurisprudence or content of US discrimination cases which justifies your view that most discrimination complainants are just self-entitled whingers?
If potential employers have been rude to them (ignoring/bypassing them), they might ask themselves whether you did anything to deserve it.
Chucking lazy stereotypes at the French doesn't help you much either. If SNCF staff have been rude to you (which I'm guessing they haven't, because I'm guessing you've never actually traveled on a French railway), you might ask yourself whether you did anything to deserve it.
You are right, I do not know anything, I am the "populist twaddler".

Thanks for the reply.
 
Jul 2016
967
Dengie Peninsula
#43
The problem with said projects is they usually end up a nightmare in the USA, between:

1-Those who have an interest to lobby against them. (Oil, Auto, Environmentalists, Local residents..etc)
2-Those who end up inflating the building and maintenance costs. (UNIONS)
3-Those who lead to post-completion performance issues due to lazy staffing (UNIONS)
4-People who use all of the above to squabble over the funding
A-Cutters because they hate the projects, the unions, and are in cahoots with lobbies.
B-Adders who believe throwing money is a solution and having these projects as "job programs" for otherwise unemployable and unfire-able people.

5-the delays of implementation, the guaranteed discovery of fatal mistakes in the construction that need to be fixed (further delay).
6-The Gender/Racial quota complaints in hiring individuals and/or companies in building or running.

By the time anything is done, those who wanted it would be either dead or retired (or close enough).
Just about right. So, do it!
 

Iraq Bruin

Ad Honorem
Oct 2010
4,844
DC
#44
Just about right. So, do it!
I wish, no one loves trains and avoids driving (for various motivations) like me, we pay 3 times for our Metro (Local Taxes, Federal Taxes, and fares) yet it gets worse despite increased funding and fare-hikes, station managers do not really care and seem bothered when people ask them questions, maintenance people forged reports and only few got fired ( and this is their LOVELY union response), ..etc.

People KNOW these things will happen, it creates a big dent in any potential support.
 

Willempie

Ad Honorem
Jul 2015
4,618
Netherlands
#46
Well, rail is worsening in Europe, and it's a conjounction of factors:

It passed from state companies to private companies (not entirely), it passed to European from national (again, not entirely).

Meaning, the worst situation: in between. The old system isn't there anymore the new one isn't there yet.

Add to that the lack of investment in infrastructure, plus the copper mafia [*], and there's You go.
It isn't worsening at all. Maybe in Belgium and UK, but certainly not here. I do a daily commute of 1:15, when I would do it by car it would take me more. Plus costs are about equal with the parking mafia in the cities.
Main cause of delays btw are suicides, 3 this week alone. Much fun as well for the team that has to clean it up.

Then again together with Japan we have the most optimally used railroad system. This means that we don't have trains only going A-B, but have multiple routes. And that is precisely because of privatization of the railroad.
 

Naomasa298

Forum Staff
Apr 2010
31,585
T'Republic of Yorkshire
#48
It isn't worsening at all. Maybe in Belgium and UK, but certainly not here. I do a daily commute of 1:15, when I would do it by car it would take me more. Plus costs are about equal with the parking mafia in the cities.
Main cause of delays btw are suicides, 3 this week alone. Much fun as well for the team that has to clean it up.

Then again together with Japan we have the most optimally used railroad system. This means that we don't have trains only going A-B, but have multiple routes. And that is precisely because of privatization of the railroad.
But how was privatisation done in the Netherlands?

In Japan, different companies run entire regions of the rail network, including the track, stations and trains. If a train crosses into another company's lines, the companies pay each other for their use. This works - the companies have every incentive to make sure their part of the line is well maintained to make the trains punctual. Ticket pricing is all one-way, and very straightforwards. It costs about £2-3 to get from one side of Tokyo to the other. If you are on a journey and decide to travel a bit further, or have simply bought the wrong ticket, you pay the difference between the ticket prices.

In the UK, one company runs the lines, and other companies run the trains. So the train operators have no control over maintenance works, or track infvestment, and the track company has no real incentive to make sure the track is open. We get endless delays due to engineering works on th line. Pricing is also a joke. A single ticket to London from where I live costs around £100, whereas a return ticket costs about £1 more. And if you buy in advance they can be cheaper, but they make you vyt a whole new ticket if you miss the train you were booked on, or if you change your mind about your journey and want to travel a bit further or to a different destination. It cists a good £12-15 to get across the London rail network.
 

Willempie

Ad Honorem
Jul 2015
4,618
Netherlands
#49
But how was privatisation done in the Netherlands?
Similar to UK, but in a smarter way. Dutch railways (NS) was privatized, but the government made sure they kept a say (with stock). Now every few years you have a concession for certain lines, which sometimes go to others. The rail infrastructure is in the hands of Pro-Rail, but they also have to report to ministry of infrastructure (a bit similar to airports).
Basically it means that they get big fines if they screw up. And speaking about NS I have seen it turn from an organization akin to the garage around the corner to a rather efficient organization. They went from "we did it like this for over a 100 years" to "why isn't this interfaced to my mobile phone in real time".

So what happens is that due to the possible fines and the targets (they're even SMART ones, which is unique when government is involved) all is done to get people to their destination as quick as safety allows. So you get double tracks (so 4 in total) from Utrecht so that one train can't block a corridor, but also simple things like consistently telling what the cause is of a delay and mobile repair teams(who have to do absolutely nothing if everything goes ok).
In Japan, different companies run entire regions of the rail network, including the track, stations and trains. If a train crosses into another company's lines, the companies pay each other for their use. This works - the companies have every incentive to make sure their part of the line is well maintained to make the trains punctual. Ticket pricing is all one-way, and very straightforwards. It costs about £2-3 to get from one side of Tokyo to the other. If you are on a journey and decide to travel a bit further, or have simply bought the wrong ticket, you pay the difference between the ticket prices.
Japan did it even smarter than here. Cheaper is definitely something they need to focus on here.
In the UK, one company runs the lines, and other companies run the trains. So the train operators have no control over maintenance works, or track infvestment, and the track company has no real incentive to make sure the track is open. We get endless delays due to engineering works on th line. Pricing is also a joke. A single ticket to London from where I live costs around £100, whereas a return ticket costs about £1 more. And if you buy in advance they can be cheaper, but they make you vyt a whole new ticket if you miss the train you were booked on, or if you change your mind about your journey and want to travel a bit further or to a different destination. It cists a good £12-15 to get across the London rail network.
That also has a lot to do with the UK setup, where there seems to be no middle ground between Thatcher-type privateers and union-strike Laborers.

Plus after seeing Birmingham I didn't really expect the railways to be better ;)
 

Naomasa298

Forum Staff
Apr 2010
31,585
T'Republic of Yorkshire
#50
but also simple things like consistently telling what the cause is of a delay
God, a friend of mine was stuck on a train for two hours without being told why they were delayed and what was going on. The stupid thing was, they were just outside a station. They could have got off the train and walked to the station, and carried on their journey, but the train staff wouldn't let them off due to "health and safety" reasons.

If there is a two minute delay on a Japanese train, you'd get a very apologetic announcement telling you why there is a delay and regular updates.

You wouldn't think it was so hard for British train companies to do the same.
 

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