I'm not presenting the article itself, which is the usual blather about HSR being the salvation of all mankind. What I am presenting here is this text-book headline. Get this: High-Speed Rails Is The Future of Tomorrow.
This is from a newspaper in Raleigh, North Carolina. What must their schools be like? The ungrammatical mindlessness of such a headline is startling and would be amusing if it weren't for the fact that the Future of our American public school system is 'Yesterday,' to use the author's failed semantic construction.
Like in much of the rest of the country, including North Carolina, California's school system and it public higher education budgets are being slashed, even as we speak, with school performance already shamefully wanting. And in the face of this gross economic stupidity, we persist in supporting a costly HSR project that will fail to deliver on each and every one of its promises, guaranteed.
"Rails is. . . . The Future of Tomorrow". . . . Mort Sahl, the comedian, had a record called The Future Lies Ahead. Pretty funny. Yet, unlike Mort Sahl, this author intends to say something profound about high-speed rail. It's almost a riff on Obama's "Winning the Future." And that's also an empty phrase.
The irony, of course is, that while the promotional verbiage promises us a better future, no one has any idea about where the funds will come from to pay for this future; how will we get there if we can't afford it? How much more should we borrow and how will we repay it? There is a dark side to this Future that the HSR community refuses to acknowledge.
Unfortunately, the headline here isn't funny. And, it tells us who, generally speaking, is supporting high-speed rail. One of the major shortcomings of education is the lack of preparation in critical thinking.
Therefore, as we are presented with TV-like marketing hype, shown glitzy videos of trains flashing across a charming countryside with wind-turbines gently turning, we conclude that this project can only be good, clean the air, save fuel, get us somewhere in great speed and comfort. That's what they want us to believe, and believe it most Californians do. Very few do their homework and get behind the fantasy to see the stage scenery from the back.
We have been snookered, scammed, and defrauded, and most of us don't know it yet. We weren't taught how to sharpen and fine-tune our "crap detectors."
Is this the 'Future' that is becoming so clear, as our author tells us? " Think," as the mouse says to his companion in the cartoon, "Why do you suppose the cat is being so nice to you?"
The Future Is Becoming Clear..."High Speed Rails Is The Future of Tomorrow"
June 17, 2011 8:42 pm ET
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