PEORIA - Former Illinois Congressman Ray LaHood, now Transportation Secretary with the Obama Administration, stunned conservatives last week when he suggested the US follow Communist China's way of building a transportation system. Heritage Foundation's Morning Bell is all over his comments:
China's attempt at a high-speed rail network is fraught with corrupt officials, impossible costs, and deadly safety failures. But U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood wishes America would follow it as a model. LaHood told The Cable last week:
The Chinese are more successful [in building infrastructure] because in their country, only three people make the decision. In our country, 3,000 people do, 3 million. In a country where only three people make the decision, they can decide where to put their rail line, get the money, and do it. We don't do it that way in America.
His comments are stunning. Yes, that's how Communists do it: A few people make decisions for the country and control the money, land, resources, and workers. And how has that worked out?
"Rather than demonstrating the advantages of centrally planned long-term investment, as its foreign admirers sometimes suggested, China's bullet-train experience shows what can go wrong when an unelected elite, influenced by corrupt opportunists, gives orders that all must follow — without the robust public discussion we would have in the states." That sounds like a direct rebuttal to LaHood, but Washington Post editorial writer Charles Lane wrote that back in April 2011.
The rest is on Monday's Morning Bell.