Hallandale Beach Blog -A common sense public policy overview offering a critical perspective on the current events, politics, govt., public policy, sports scene and pop culture of the U.S., South Florida and Europe, especially the UK and Sweden. In particular, Broward & Miami-Dade County, and the cities of Hallandale Beach, Hollywood & Aventura. Trust me when I tell you, this part of Florida is NOT the Land of Lincoln. Pictured in upper-left is Hallandale Beach's iconic beachball-colored Water Tower on State Road A1A; September 2008 photo by me, South Beach Hoosier. © 2013 Hallandale Beach Blog, All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

While High Speed Rail advocates met in NYC re Northeast Corridor, more troubling financial data re proposed LA-SF Bullet Train emerged -boondoggle?

USHSR's 2011 Conference in New York City

Even while High Speed Rail advocates met in New York recently to discuss their hopes and dreams for the service in the Northeast Corridor, Adam Nagourney of the N.Y. Times has just revealed even more troubling financial details about the possible coming boondoggle with California's San Francisco-to-Anaheim Bullet Train, which I suspect most of the country outside of Cali is still largely ignorant of, despite its eventual ripple effects across the country, good and bad.

According to the Sacramento Bee, the California High Speed Rail Authority still plans to begin construction in September!

Train Wars Teaser - High Speed Rail in California

California High Speed Rail video

I've been reading about all its myriad controversies for months in the L.A. Times, and all things considered, their coverage has been pretty spot-on, and NOT nearly as sycophantic as certain Florida newspapers and pols I could name who were supportive of a supposed Bullet Train between Orlando and the Tampa Bay area, which Gov. Rick Scott was rightly opposed to.

Though I'm a strong pro-transit advocate, given my dozen of blog posts here on the subject of transportation over the years, especially the desirability of a commuter line on the F.E.C. tracks near U.S.-1, from downtown Miami to Palm Beach County, thru the most-densely populated parts of South Florida, I was always against that particular line in Central Florida.
It made no sense and couldn't possibly be successful because the distance was too short given the driving alternative.

See Jacksonville Transit blog's well-reasoned post of June 12th about why HSR failed the smell test in Florida: GOOD REASONS TO KILL FLORIDA HIGH SPEED RAIL

I've always suspected -and said on other transit blogs- that the line that would likely get the Obama money to proceed would likely be one between Chicago and St. Louis.

How's this for the beginning of a very expensive trip?
"The pro-train constituency has not been derailed by a state report this month that found the cost of the bullet train tripling to $98 billion for a project that would not be finished until 2033..."
New York Times
California Bullet Train Project Advances Amid Cries of Boondoggle
By Adam Nagourney
November 26, 201
SACRAMENTO — Across the country, the era of ambitious public works projects seems to be over. Governments are shelving or rejecting plans for highways, railroads and big buildings under the weight of collapsing revenues and voters’ resistance.

Read the rest of the article at:

The Nagourney article follows by a few days an excellent, eye-opening story by Ralph
Vartabedian in the LAT that delves into the social and cultural problems associated with constructing the line thru several parts of Cali that are firmly opposed to it and have the financial means and the will to push back hard, namely, the Central Valley agriculture belt.
The folks who grew and cultivated many of the items in your kitchen right now.

Los Angeles Times
California bullet train: The high price of speed
Its proposed route would destroy churches, schools, homes, warehouses, banks, medical offices, stores and much more.
By Ralph Vartabedian, Los Angeles Times
October 22, 2011, 6:03 p.m.

Reporting from Bakersfield— Since it opened in 1893, Bakersfield High School has been the pride of this city and its academic cornerstone, the place where the late Chief Justice Earl Warren graduated and students call themselves the Drillers in homage to the region's oil patch.

It has withstood earthquakes and depressions, but perhaps it will not survive the California bullet train.
Read the rest of the article at:

Los Angeles Times
LA NOW blog
Cost projection for California bullet train jumps to nearly $100 billion
By Ralph Vartabedian
October 31, 2011 10:06 pm
California's bullet train will cost an estimated $98.5 billion to build over the next 20 years, an amount far higher than any previous projection, according to a business plan scheduled to be unveiled Tuesday.

Los Angeles Times
Opinion LA blog
California's bullet train: Boondoggle or boon?
By Dan Turner
November 3, 2011 3:35 pm
Californians seem to fall into two camps when it comes to the state's multibillion-dollar high-speed rail project, with those on one side (typically fiscal conservatives) seeing it as a massive waste of taxpayer money while those on the other (typically liberals) think it's a visionary, environmentally responsible solution to our state's transportation problems.
Read the rest of the post at:

Read the readers response to that post at:

The most recent financial news predicate for much of this debate can be read here:
Congress About to Kill High-Speed Train Program
By JOAN LOWY Associated Press
WASHINGTON November 17, 2011 (AP)


California High Speed Rail Authority: http://www.cahighspeedrail.ca.gov/

California High Speed Rail's YouTube Channel:

USHSR's YouTube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/USHSR

HighSpeedRailDoc's YouTube Channel:

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#HOLLYWOODFL based photographer and entrepreneur Esther Chuang with Hollywood Mayor-elect Josh Levy

Thumbs up! What a night! #HOLLYWOODFL based photographer and entrepreneur Esther Chuang with a very elated Hollywood Mayor-elect Josh Levy at his Victory Party, held at Leo Anato's Atelier3/AT3 on Harrison Street & S. 19th Avenue, Hollywood. AT3's great environment and the amazing variety of food prepared by chef Kevin Dreifuss, former owner/chef of ENDS MEAT restaurant, was SUPERB! November 8, 2016

Esther Chuang, Morro Dois Irmãos, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 2015

Above, perhaps my most-favorite photo ever of Esther, which is really saying something considering the THOUSANDS that I've actually seen of her, from all over the world. But despite the fact that you can't actually see it here, trust me, her amazing smile and inner and external beauty are there. This photo is an even more amazing achievement when you know the backstory of what it took for Esther to get to the top of the mountain, since it's NOT for the faint of heart. Next time you see her, ask her about that! Morro Dois Irmãos, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on her birthday, July 10, 2015. That's the Christ The Redeemer statue way out in the horizon on the top of another mountain, to the left of her head. �� In case you forgot what the Christ the Redeemer statue looks like, up close, here's another Brazilian beauty to connect-the-dots for you: Gisele Bündchen, aka @Gisele.

Abençoado por Deus e bonito por natureza!✨ ������

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View of Rio De Janeiro from my room.

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"Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase." - Martin Luther King, Sept. 1962. #MLK I was a young kid living in #Memphis with my family that April night in 1968 when we returned home from a trip to #McDonalds and like so many nights before, I raced to the TV set in the living room to beat my two younger sisters to be the one who turned on the TV. As my parents walked in and settled down on the family couch, to see what was on TV, literally, within one minute, came the Breaking News that Dr. King had been shot elsewhere in the city. And the news only got worse as the night went on as news soon confirmed that Dr. King had died as a result of the assassination attempt, and soon there was widespread looting and violence in Memphis, the very things he had adamantly opposed. Eventually came the news that the city was under curfew, and sometime before midnight, because my family lived in a new-ish apt. complex that was on the same road as the nearby Armory, my parents and I and many of our neighbors watched in silence from the sidewalk/curb as tanks driven by members of the mobilized National Guard drove towards downtown Memphis, because the city's powers-that-be had decided that this would show the people who was boss. As my mother tells the story, one of my neighbors remarked on the irony of U.S. Army tanks being used to try to stop violence by Americans who were upset about the murder of a great man who had won the #NobelPeacePrize. It was the first time I remember ever hearing this strange word: #irony.

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When you leave but bring the spare key because it is yours to keep.

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2 0 1 7. I made new mistakes and old ones again. I learned things I didn't know and I things I had already learned the hard way but needed to repeat either way. I fell in love again and again, with the same man, and realized that is the way to do it. I stopped thinking life happened to me and started enjoying taking control of what tomorrow would entail. I wrote even when it hurt and I apologized even when they didn't. I almost gave up but woke up and stood up and spoke up and didn't budge and moved on and forgave myself for not always knowing what to do. I decided the most important thing is to be proud of who I become and to make sure she is someone to be proud of. All I truly have is the opportunity to be whoever I want to be, and knowing that is everything.

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I'm not the only poet in this relationship ❥

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The boyfriend of Mikaela -Malin and Jennifer's sister- wrote above: "Honey, you are my everything, my dream, my imagination, my reality, my future. Sounds like something that I would write to someone special -and have!
FYI: There are 10 photos below, including a rare one of yours truly!