While political parties play their silly, childish games, people in America are dying. While Republicans are saying we have to get government out of the business of regulating business, businesses are racking in profits and people are dying.
Last night eight more people died because the rail industry has failed to fulfill an already-too-feeble government mandate to install a “Positive Train Control” system. It was mandated in 2008 with a deadline for completion by December of this year. That was a ridiculously generous deadline but the rail industry has lagged far behind the pace needed to meet it.
Sadly, some people still boast of America as “Exceptional” even as we — like our industries — lag farther and farther behind many other countries. (Have you ever ridden on one of Europe’s magnificent trains?) Our infrastructures require the cooperative efforts of all Americans — by way of government acting as the representative of the whole people. Those who are fighting so hard to reduce government are incredibly indiscriminate. They hate the idea of government even when it seeks to do what it must do if America is to function.
They tell us, these anti-government people, that the business sector will make everything better for us if we will just get government out of the way. I do not believe anyone has the moral right to believe such patently false nonsense. Train service on Amtrak is degrading rapidly. Our roads and bridges are crumbling. Our major financial institutions are flourishing while middle America flounders. Our airlines are cramming more and more people into a grossly insufficient number of airplanes and serving them at a level that cannot begin to match what I found on my first commercial flight on a DC-3 in 1952!!!
Business is failing America just as badly as is Congress. Yet we continue to elect “leaders” who are nothing more than obstructionists. We get what we deserve.