George Will is a good looking man but he isn’t very smart. He wants to explain to us why liberals and progressives like trains:
Forever seeking Archimedean levers for prying the world in directions they prefer, progressives say they embrace high-speed rail for many reasons—to improve the climate, increase competitiveness, enhance national security, reduce congestion, and rationalize land use. The length of the list of reasons, and the flimsiness of each, points to this conclusion: the real reason for progressives’ passion for trains is their goal of diminishing Americans’ individualism in order to make them more amenable to collectivism.
Speaking for myself, I like trains because I use them. I use the train to travel into Philadelphia, New York, and Washington DC. I have used the train to travel to Chicago. I once took the train most of the way to Hilton Head Island. I don’t like flying because I am susceptible to sinus infections and my ears do not always clear. Once, I lost hearing after a flight that didn’t fully return for a year. I don’t like driving into major cities for a host of reasons, including traffic jams, the high concentration required, and the expense of and difficulty in finding parking. Traveling by train is also relaxing. It’s easy to sleep or to read, both of which can be difficult in a car. I would like faster, more reliable, and, above all, more comfortable trains. Why? Because that would benefit me directly. It has never occurred to me that faster, more reliable, and more comfortable trains might diminish my individuality and make me more susceptible to collectivism.
But that’s because I am not a wanker.