“Rocky Mountain Flyer” Proposal

16 December 2007

 In case you don’t already know about us, we are Rails Inc, New Mexico’s passenger Rail action group. We are an all-volunteer 501-c-3 devoted to the return of Rail as our dominant mode of land transportation. Our primary strategy is to point out the many ways that Rail, in all its many forms, benefits the public; that Rail and Rail transit are in fact shrewd investments of the  taxpayer’s dollar (not a bloody “subsidy”!). And we can prove it.

Good transportation (which means Rail-anchored) is neither liberal, conservative, radical, red, blue or green. It’s just good transportation, and a major yet neglected part of the answer to an astonishing number of our world problems. All right, it is “green”.

As part of our Five Point Program (see our Web site), we’d like to see the establishment of Amtrak Superliner service from El Paso to Havre Montana, via Albuquerque, Denver, Cheyenne, etc. We’re calling it the “Rocky Mountain Flyer”. We think this will require a united effort on the part of the DOT’s, Governors, members of Congress and advocacy groups in  the five states along the proposed route. The obvious benefit of the RMF would be the linking together of Amtrak’s four principal Western routes. Other benefits of this service would be numerous, and the expenses very reasonable ( and job-generating), especially for the long haul.

Some of Amtrak’s most successful routes are those sponsored by one or more

states

. Further, we think that Amtrak could do a pretty good job if they ever once got enough money to do it right.The rolling stock sitting around waiting for repair and rehab in their holding yards would more than enable what we propose, with enough left over to improve other routes.

Passenger Rail is among the few products or services in America in which Supply is artificially restricted in the face of great and increasing Demand. Some Free Market.

We have correctly pointed out in New Mexico that any political leader who sticks out his / her neck for more and better passenger Rail will find said neck pretty safe after all—-not from the flat-earth special interests, but from the general voting public.

People want more trains. Let’s supply them. To learn the reasons for our above assertions, consult www.nmrails.org and the Sites linked to same, or write back to me. Thank you.

JW Madison

for Rails Inc.

 Postscript:

Here’s an example of how great issues work together, and of how Rail can drag other issues up with it as it rises:

Since a major impediment to smooth and seamless Rocky Mountain Rail service is the large number of coal trains in Colorado and Wyoming, a speedy switch to renewable energy would also help to effect a speedy Rocky Mountain Flyer.Such a double switch, as it were, could become a triple switch; the third being increased passenger- related revenue to offset the loss of coal-hauling revenue for the freight railroads. Just a possibility or talking point there.