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Home Main Forums General Discussion I rode China’s superfast bullet train— and it shows how far behind the US really

  • Chop Chop (271 posts)
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    I rode China’s superfast bullet train— and it shows how far behind the US really


    Chinese High Speed Trains at Tianjin Station

    (This is what can be done when every spare cent isn’t spent on war. The Chinese started PLANNING this network in the early 1990’s. Within 20 years they built the network, the trainsets, the stations, everything. Meanwhile, the US is going on 18 years in Afghanistan, and will spend MILLIONS in just the next week. Why there isn’t more outrage is the question.)

    I rode China’s superfast bullet train that could go from New York to Chicago in 4.5 hours — and it shows how far behind the US really is

    Harrison Jacobs, Business Insider US 5/11/18

    Traveling to China can often feel like visiting the future. The cities stretch out for what seems like forever, while new skyscrapers, bridges, and futuristically designed landmarks spring up every year.

    Nowhere is this feeling more apparent than when you encounter China’s high-speed railway network. At 15,500 miles, the country’s “bullet train” is the world’s largest.

    And it’s getting larger.

    The China Railway Corp., the country’s government-owned train operator, is getting close to finishing the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link, a high-speed rail line spanning more than 80 miles. And the country’s plan is to create an extended network that covers 24,000 miles and connects all cities with a population greater than 500,000…more: https://www.businessinsider.sg/china-bullet-train-speed-map-photos-tour-2018-5/

    When China publicly states that they plan to dominate the hydrogen fuel cell industry in 5 years people should listen.  This is a country of people that can get things done, kind of like the US once upon a time.

    Enthusiast, Katashi, Baba OhReally and 30 otherscanoeist52, ThinkingANew, aspirant, Stockholmer, stubbornthing, ZimInSeattle, iggy, ctsnowman, retired liberal, mmonk, GloriaMundi, djean111, B Calm, Marym625, eridani, Dragon Turtle, Peace Patriot, Gryneos, twenty, Jan Boehmermann, DesertRat2015, xynthee, NV Wino, Iwalani88, h-32, Doremus Jessup, gordyfl, 3FingerBrown, Ejbr, Salemcourt like this
    Wasserstoff und Brennstoffzellen sind die Zukunft

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    • Hawkowl (1408 posts)
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      1. Indeed

      People who have not been to China in the last few years are absolutely clueless as to how advanced technologically China has become.

      Americans think the Chinese have to put up with the cheap, defective shit that Walmart insists on selling. The truth is the goods China produces and consumes domestically are of very high quality.

      China will be the dominant economic power very quickly, in 10 -15 years in my estimation.  Their leaders do a far better job of creating and spreading the wealth than our sociopaths.

      "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” - Burke
      • Chop Chop (271 posts)
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        4. +1 – fully agree. Here's a Must See Video

        It’s long but this is a look at what they are doing with regard to clean energy and transport, from someone who goes there all the time. It is a warning that the US will not even know about until it is too late

        Wasserstoff und Brennstoffzellen sind die Zukunft
      • OCMI (1949 posts)
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        14. China's wealth inequality is approaching that of the US

        They are doing a worse and worse job of spreading the wealth as they grow

        https://www.forbes.com/sites/katinastefanova/2017/12/19/chinas-rising-wealth-gap-and-implications-to-markets-and-the-world/#1e27d6544231

        If you dislike Trump, you should vote for him so we can change his party from within. Yes, Hillary supporters, this is how ridiculous you sound.
        • Hawkowl (1408 posts)
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          17. Yes and no

          The inequality is increasing because under Communism, equality was enforced for the vast majority. So compared to 30 years ago or even 10 years, yes, inequality is on the rise.  Perhaps a better way to view it is the Chinese middle class is growing exponentially while a substantial percentage of the population remains poor.

          In the US, the population of poor is growing exponentially, while the percentage of middle class is shrinking at an alarming rate.

          "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” - Burke
          • OCMI (1949 posts)
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            19. Yes, that's true

            It remains to be seen if the wealthy and middle-class in China will bring the poor along with them for the ride, whereas in the US the wealthy have abandoned everyone else

            If you dislike Trump, you should vote for him so we can change his party from within. Yes, Hillary supporters, this is how ridiculous you sound.
            • Akallabeth (3148 posts)
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              27. I don't know if I buy into that.

              People are trying to get the wealthy to abandon everybody else. The highly visible, annoying people you see online, might be sock puppets, you know.  There is a good chance many are.

               

              "Out of many, one"
              • OCMI (1949 posts)
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                30. Good point

                We only hear from those the media allows to be heard

                If you dislike Trump, you should vote for him so we can change his party from within. Yes, Hillary supporters, this is how ridiculous you sound.
    • Salemcourt (1031 posts)
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      2. the trains are better than US in many third world countries

      let alone the Chinese railways.

      • Coldmountaintrail (6426 posts)
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        7. the trains in the US in the late 50s were better than ours today.

        I loved trains and its sad whats happened to passenger rail in most parts of the us.

        • Akallabeth (3148 posts)
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          13. Public trasnporation was intentionally destroyed to force people to buy cars

          That is fact.

          Lots of people are trying to hide it because it shows how stupid allowing corporations to set government policy and privatize essential public utilities is. We had the best public transport system in the world including extensive electric light rail in all of our major cities.

          Idiots we are, we let a coalition of companies dominated by the automotive industry buy it up and dismantle it.

          Had we not done that we likely would be in far better shape economically and wouldn’t be going around now starting wars over oil.

          "Out of many, one"
          • MistaP (8488 posts)
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            18. yup–in the 90s TX (Texas!) almost had a private HSR but Southwest

            and Days Inn and Best Western just bought some people in the Lege and shot it down–much like how the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth was ultimately hamstrung by the liberum veto

            come the 00s, suddenly LUV can’t turn a profit on intrastate flights–they’re loss-leaders to get people to the hubs instead; now of course they want that bullet train! like Blue Cross the airlines can’t turn a sustainable profit even with a captive market

            even light rail gets gummed up by astroturf–in 1996 Riordan handed control of LA’s transit to Eric Mann’s tiny Marxist-Leninist cult that was obsessively anti-rail (they still say to shut down the network) and paid by white segregationists (but they always made sure their protests are low-albedo); Tom Hayden and Mike Davis were marching against the subway; hilariously more people from East and South LA showed up to counterprotest (less hilariously they were called, well it rhymes with “blouse figure”)

            Beverly Hills High embezzled $10,000,000 to fight the subway, even making a professional film series they called “Why We Fight” without a twitch of shame

            http://www.salon.com/2016/11/09/the-hillary-clinton-campaign-intentionally-created-donald-trump-with-its-pied-piper-strategy/ (Third Way = Bell Curve)
            • Akallabeth (3148 posts)
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              22. I'm talking about the trolley cars

              They had them in both LA and the Bay Area.  When I first moved the San Francisco they still had not finished the Muni Metro. So the trolleys ran all the way down Market St above ground. In LA (before my time) they ran a fair way up into the hills. The PCC was a popular model.

              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PCC_streetcar

               

              But by the time I was around LA’s public transit system was horrible.

              Dozens of companies were involved, not just the notorious National City Lines.

              The whole story of it and Planned Obsolescence was told to me by a former editor for Communications Arts, who was the brother of a friend.

              "Out of many, one"
              • MistaP (8488 posts)
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                23. they even made "Who Framed Roger Rabbit?" about it!

                problem back then is the trolleys would get stuck in even 30s traffic and didn’t offer a fast service–surface light rail and commuter rail are way faster but LA didn’t have #1 and the commuter burbs that #2 serves didn’t yet exist; trolley removal also happened in Britain, while Germany kept its tracks

                so basically trolleys were today’s equivalent to buses; saving energy and/or preventing CO2 emissions was not a concern; nor was freeway congestion even–the speed limit was 55 mph, after all!!! Federal decisions as well as carmaker efforts to destroy even the possibility of state competition were key: freeways were seen as an investment, a brand-new, European concept, and money poured in; ditto for airports when it came to interurban travel–lots of small airlines, lots of small-town airfields

                so that’s the background to actually two unconscionable decisions–the synchronized buyout and removal (and burning) of the trolleys, and then the often-deliberate sale of the bigger rights-of-way so that any restoration of rail would mean lengthy, costly, opposition-building eminent-domain cases; IOW this let the city fathers and bought pols disguised their choices as the natural course of things; even today nobody blinks at general funds being used to subsidize roads while every penny for rail and inch of line brings out literal hysteria–

                rail’s often seen as a gimmick–“how do we get people to ride?”; of course any appreciable rail network does get ridden, but it has to be built first

                http://www.salon.com/2016/11/09/the-hillary-clinton-campaign-intentionally-created-donald-trump-with-its-pied-piper-strategy/ (Third Way = Bell Curve)
          • Coldmountaintrail (6426 posts)
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            24. agreed.

    • HIP56948 (3886 posts)
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      3. China is run by people roaring into the future with their citizens in mind.

      America is still trying to get the Yugo out of the ditch.

      • Chop Chop (271 posts)
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        5. We need to do whatever is necessary to STOP blowing our children's future on war

        http://costofwar.com

        China isn’t going around the world doing “regime changes”

        What happened to the US??? How have the citizens allowed their government to turn psycho?

        WHERE ARE THE PROTESTS

        We can thank the grinning liar for part of this clusterF

        Wasserstoff und Brennstoffzellen sind die Zukunft
        • Marym625 (29835 posts)
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          10. We dropped the ball

          Let the press be taken over. Became complacent. Now we’re paying the price.

          But at least eyes are opening.

          Take Action #StopFCC https://www.battleforthenet.com/breaktheinternet/ "Once the decision was made to go into Iraq as an invader and occupier,  it’s like our nation lost its conscience. And it has not yet gotten that conscience back." Madfloridian  
        • Akallabeth (3148 posts)
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          28. Grass is greener syndrome

          Both countries have serious problems. All big countries do, and the rush of exponential growth is going to cause the same problems in China as it is here. Jobs are going to vanish in large numbers. Customers will vanish too.

          "Out of many, one"
        • Enthusiast (13207 posts)
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          29. That is why TPTB wanted Hillary.

          "I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations which dare already to challenge our government to a trial by strength, and bid defiance to the laws of our country." Thomas Jefferson
    • Doremus Jessup (3957 posts)
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      6. Our plan is to steal thier country.

      Fighting for peace is like screwing for virginity. End ALL occupations and bring the troops home.
    • RufusTFirefly (3529 posts)
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      8. Cool! They make the trains run on time! Is China a democracy?? n/t

      • djean111 (6750 posts)
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        11. Neither China nor the US is a democracy.

        Our government is not even microscopically interested in what the citizens want.  And the issue here is not democracy.  It is what our money is being used for, and what is being done for us citizens.

        • *Obligatory disclaimer - when I say "Democratic Party" I mean the DNC - the Clintons and the un-elected people and the consultants and the lobbyists and the corporations who actually run things.  The people who work and vote and are registered as "D" are no more the actual party than Trekkies are Star Trek.   Extra credit - the Democratic Party gets to actually fuck up your life. When you vote for it.
        You think the only reason that people won't vote for a warmongering Third Way fracking-enabling cluster bomb throwing H-1B increasing lying pandering corporate and Wall Street shill who says she has no problem putting abortion rights on the table is because we are mad about Bernie?  Um, nope.
        • nevereVereven (4838 posts)
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          12. +100

          A hologram of a magnifying glass will also function as a magnifying glass, but a hologram of Sherlock Holmes won't solve anything.  
      • peacecorps (4889 posts)
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        21. Trains run on time in France, Japan, Sweden, Germany.

        Democracy and trains running on time are not related. Many undemocratic countries have unreliable trains, as well.

    • Marym625 (29835 posts)
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      9. So cool

      On The Daily Radical! Thank you for sharing this.

      Sure makes the EL look archaic

      Take Action #StopFCC https://www.battleforthenet.com/breaktheinternet/ "Once the decision was made to go into Iraq as an invader and occupier,  it’s like our nation lost its conscience. And it has not yet gotten that conscience back." Madfloridian  
    • Lydia Leftcoast (8 posts)
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      15. Same in Japan

      While the U.S. can’t build even one genuine high-speed line, Japan built its first one in 1964 and continues to build them. The lines now extend to three of the four main islands.

      According to a book that I translated some fifteen years ago, the oldest line, which runs between the major business centers of Tokyo and Osaka, carries 1/3 of all traffic between the cities. The line runs downtown to downtown, takes a little over 2 hours to travel 240 miles, and the trains run every five to ten minutes from about 6:00AM to about 10:00PM.

      On my 2012 trip, I went to the Sendai area (about 200 miles north of Tokyo) as an easy day trip, thanks to the high-speed rail system. I tell travelers to Japan that thanks to the train system, they don’t need to travel from city to city. Instead, they can choose two or three bases and take day trips from there.

      I haven’t been to China lately, but I was in South Korea in 2014, was blown away by Busan, which is a weird combination of Old Asia and futuristic skyscrapers (reachable from Fukuoka, Japan by hovercraft),  the existence of high-speed rail, and the bustling city of Seoul. Flying from the ultramodern Incheon Airport to even the relatively pleasant San Francisco Airport felt like coming down a notch.

      Maybe the REAL reason most Americans have such short vacations is that it prevents them from making extensive trips abroad to see what other countries are doing.

      • MistaP (8488 posts)
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        20. simple mislogic: if they let us have it, we'd like it, we'd support it,

        we might punish those who’d blocked it–I’ve heard of councilmembers who blustered for the cameras but said privately a new line/bond issue would be popular for them to support, but they’d get hit by Koch money and might then lose anyway over flip-flopping

        another factor is that America actually looooves science, but only a certain sort that gets Wired readers tingly: all our “futuristic” tech is supplied only by the fantasies of rail-bashing scamsters–remember the PRT podcars? there’s a whole cornucopia of gadgetbahns we’re supposed to build instead of what works–PRT podcars! travelators! monorails! vactrains! gondolas! straddling buses! car sledges! car-sledge sledges!

        as long as no American’s been on a real bullet train the fantasies seem on the same footing as the reality-based tech: I have articles saying not to build rail because self-driving cars will be here in a decade: they’re from 2000!

        I’m happy to report CA’s train is on schedule–they’re building the fast trackage first (which ironically costs only 20% of the final bill, the rest goes to upgrading the suburban systems in SoCal and the South SF Bay)

        and welcome to JPR!

        http://www.salon.com/2016/11/09/the-hillary-clinton-campaign-intentionally-created-donald-trump-with-its-pied-piper-strategy/ (Third Way = Bell Curve)
        • Coldmountaintrail (6426 posts)
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          25. agree with you on the (individualistic) 'futuristic' tech v. what works, for

          sure.

          because public services here are so lousy and because there’s such a class divide in who uses them, people can’t imagine any variety of common transport that could be fast, efficient, safe and clean.   You have to experience the option to actually ‘get it,’ imho.

          I’ve experienced that myself: seeing is believing, people can tell you stuff but it somehow doesn’t hit home until you experience it yourself.  People (I don’t exempt myself at all) are so full of their preconceived ideas based on their own experience and conditioning…hard to make room for anything new in their head — until they do it themselves, and then, in my experience, they will come back to tell you all about it, like it was their personal discovery!

          • MistaP (8488 posts)
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            26. as I mentioned above, Ford et al. relied on a "prophylactic" approach

            if it’s absent or a mutilated stump (the Purple Line’s been stranded 10 miles out since Bob Dole was polling well), it’s just not in people’s mental horizon

            the first thing everyone asked when the Expo opened (after 2 years of delay by a perpetual litigant who mysteriously doesn’t have any money himself)–“why didn’t we have this sooner?” or for that matter 40 years earlier? one aim was to impose delays and cost increases

            that’s why Brown insisted on building the Central Valley segment first–it’d be a sunk cost, too embarrassing to be allowed to rust; I always set people straight when they grumble that all the money should be spent on improving local service: it is! that’s the plan! 80% of the cost is going to 25% of the track, to SF-Gilroy and Santa Clarita-DTLA, largely because everything was delayed so long that it doubled the costs (thereby justifying not doing it)

            http://www.salon.com/2016/11/09/the-hillary-clinton-campaign-intentionally-created-donald-trump-with-its-pied-piper-strategy/ (Third Way = Bell Curve)
    • ZimInSeattle (2298 posts)
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      16. Thanks for posting this expose of US third world status. It's difficult to

      stay ahead when your only tool for doing so is bombing other countries back to the stone age.

      Proudly #DemExited & #LeftOut  | "Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable" - JFK | Bernie would have WON!  |“Fascism is a result of the failure of the left to provide an alternative” - Leon Trotsky | Sanders/Gabbard 2020 (PPP