The government is good at one thing…losing money

One of many signs of Congressional ineptitude is its willingness to continue shoveling money into Amtrak (about $1.5 billion annually at last count), the government-owned (socialized) rail monopoly. Obviously, cutting $1.5 billion is not going to solve our national deficit which runs at approximately 100 times that amount, but it is symbolic and you have to start somewhere.

Recently, it was reported that Amtrak lost $834 million in the last 10 years selling hamburgers, drinks, and other food to a captive audience on its trains.

It is long-past time to sell Amtrak off to the highest bidder or, where no one will buy the railroad, simply abandon rail service. I do know that I don’t want any more of this “government efficiency” brought to my health care and other, more complicated areas of the economy.

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14 Replies to “The government is good at one thing…losing money”

  1. Just read the Amtrak lost $834 million article…

    Let me see if I get this straight…we need to run a loss on Amtrak’s food service operations so that we can continue to run a loss on the transportation service itself…otherwise we might run greater losses?

    Oh, and Democrat legislators are saying it would be “mean” not to continue to run these kinds losses on the taxpayer’s dime?

    Interesting… the classic dollar waiting on a dime strategy…how altruistic of them.

    1. So how much money does the road in front of your house make every year?

      Maybe you should be paying $2 for every mile that you drive your car?

      1. I was beginning to wonder when our resident throw-someone-else’s-money-down-a-hole expert was going to make his little appearance…you’re as predictable as clockwork, Andrew…thank you.

        I’m not opposed to taking a toll road. But what I do have a problem with is wasting public dollars, simply for the sake of it. And you…you’re cool with that?

        1. I mean tolls on ALL roads. Do you want to pay $2 for every mile that you drive?

          If you want to be unfair to others, then be unfair to your self as well.

          1. Tolls wouldn’t be that high in a freer market with competition among various private road builders.

          2. I suppose that if a taxpayer were being mugged and had their a choice between parasites, then $2 might sound better than Pew’s loss analysis figure of $32 per passenger, back in 2008…of course that was before the current Administration devoted a planned $53 billion more dollars to subsidize Amtrak’s massive losses. Although, I wouldn’t exactly call that “fair”, Andrew.

            Here’s the story for your reading pleasure:

            Amtrak Turns 40…Called a ‘Massive Failure’ by its Founder


        2. Guys, “free market” is just another term for saying “theft”.

          Tolls are a means of cost recovery, that still doesn’t mean that the street in front of your home exists on a profit or loss basis.

          Also Amtrak’s cost recovery ratio is over 80% which is better than most of roads at around 20%.

  2. While I agree that “Amstuck” needs to be terminated, I wonder why politicians of both parties continue to ignore billions in waste year after year? According to Citizens Against Government Waste, $400 billion was wasted last year in duplicate programs alone and that was only a part of the total waste.

    These are not small numbers folks. If we eliminated all government waste (dreamer aren’t I) we could really make a dent in our deficit and break free of the annual “tax increases” vs. “spending cuts” argument that the Democrats and Republicans like to hold out there as red herrings to divert our attention.

    Once again, by not speaking out, we get the government we deserve.

  3. Paul: You are asking the
    Government to abolish UNION jobs !! Do you really think that will happen? Look at the mismanagement of the Post Office, all for UNION jobs at taxpayers expense.

  4. Paul, this is pure political BS.

    Fire departments and streets don’t make money, that still doesn’t mean that they should be shut down either.

  5. lets see if I get this staight, you don’t think the gov can run a decent health care system?
    but you support the military and the veterans?
    well if government run health care is so bad why are you sticking me a disabled veteran with the government run VA health care system.

    personally I think I get pretty good health care and would hope everyone else’s gov run health care is just as good.

    oh, BTW, last year the gov added more money to the highway trust fund because it was broke than they subsidized Amtrak in 40 years.

    level playing field works both ways


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