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January 05, 2015

Comments

Jennifer

"...calling a group of protesters "pusillanimous" Brown likened the effort, as only the governor can, to the great cathedrals of Europe..."

"Things are going to be blossoming like blades of grass coming up, and eventually you see you have a lawn."

(quote of the day from Dan Richard, describing the HSR building process...)

Russ

Many of us on the Peninsula and in Burlingame in particular have been opposed to this boondoggle from the beginning.
Here is a link to one more of we Burlingamer's talking about the opposition:

http://www.nbcbayarea.com/video/#!/on-air/as-seen-on/California-to-Break-Ground-on-Bullet-Train-on-Tuesday/287612511

Jennifer

Hey, that's Burlingame's Pat!!!

Steve K

I thought we are supposed to stop planting lawns. I'm confused.

Cathy Baylock

Steve K, It took me a minute to "get" your lawn reference, but have to admit, that's pretty funny! Thanks for the chuckle!

Edmund Burke

Message for Burlingame regarding the plethora of corruption both inside and outside the borders of Burlingame:

"All that is necessary for evil to triumph is that good people do nothing."

Edmund Burke

hollyroller@hotwire.com

Good point Mr. Burke?
I am grateful that people like Joe, Jennifer, and Mr. Dickenson have taken an active roll informing us with their knowledge, and opinions. Political Connections are important too.
Unfortunately.
As I see things unfold be it HSR, City of Burlingame (Mis)management, and the problems that the City Elders have coming together without "backbiting," Our Fair City has the same problems as most City and Counties...
With the exception that we have money!
Lots of it too.
Things financially for the City of Burlingame have drastically changed in the last ten years.
So has the community.
Thereby, I hope that there will be a complete "flip" of the City of Burlingame Elders, that will reflect the new and wealthy, homeowners that make up the majority of new home purchases. They also are responsible for the new home building, remodeling, and employment.
Happy New-"Hic" Year.

Jennifer

The Peninsula Corridor Joint Powers Board (JPB) certified the Final EIR this morning in San Carlos, and approved electrification along the SF Peninsula

http://www.caltrain.com/about/news/Caltrain_Board_Certifies_Final_Environmental_Impact_Report_and_Approves_Peninsula_Corridor_Electrification_Project.html

Political debate, balance, and honesty...I want you back!

Instead of massive, explosive train horn blasts...can we get "Hits of the 70s" playing like a ring tone?

And now, let's check out The Jackson Five on The Soul Train 1972, "I want you back!":

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6QW3oTE85Nk&feature=player_detailpage#t=10

Jennifer

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9SXG5MzY7BE

Bruce Dickinson

Guys, when Bruce Dickinson discovered that the Spanish construction firm submitted and won the RFP for the first leg of HSR of $1,234,567.890, a number that came from the same place as poop, I couldn't help but chuckle, yes laugh at how our city "elders" failed to take a strong stance against HSR and they look just as duped/tricked as your average person. When Bruce Dickinson hears the word "elder", I think age, knowledge, experience, wisdom, philosophy, and teachings. I would be remiss if I didn't say that the city council should be more aptly named city "schoolchildren" as they seem to exhibit none of the above associations with the world elder, and seem to be afraid of their own shadows when it comes to real issues.

Not to digress too much, but the 1234567890 number is about $1 billion dollars lower than others submitting an RFP and is a complete public insult to injury that has an egg on everyone's faces. This Spanish construction firm is probably being bailed out by the EU (i.e. Germany), along with the rest of the PIGS economies (Portugal, Italy, Greece, Spain) and do we really want to test the adage "you get what you pay for" when it comes to passenger safety on 200 mph trains?

Now back to the city "schoolchildren". The last time I checked, having a high speed train cut right through our town seems like something to take a stance on, given how it will affect everyone. So Holy-baby, while I know you use the term a lot (and probably only Madame Baylock is worthy of the term), if you had to ask Dr. Dickinson's advice, I'd say you'd be doing the word "elder" a disservice by associating it with any wisdom, knowledge, philosophy, or quite frankly, anything substantive coming out of our city government lately. My message to the government is this: Start representing residents and tackling some real issues and you gain the Dr. Dickinson seal of approval. Keep tip-toeing, skirting, prancing around, yes, avoiding controversy and focusing on only on feel-good messages and self-felicitations on non issues, then become the laughing stock of the community. People are starting to get the joke, whether it's made up numbers or made up "issues". Burlingame needs to get back into the talent business real fast.

Our Culture > it's time to restore the basics.

Jennifer,

That robot was awesome! Great call.

Bruce,

I like your new tone now that you've learned what corrupt, evil people California local and state politicians really are...and that the Dem part is not the cool party, its the party connected to the bad guys...as the bad guys told me at gun point recently right after they bashed my head with a bottle.

I would like to make one other point regarding Burlingame and really SF to SJ culture...and it's well reflected in Mark Zuckerberg's recent statement on Facebook.

"Yet as I reflect on yesterday's attack and my own experience with extremism, this is what we all need to reject -- a group of extremists trying to silence the voices and opinions of everyone else around the world."

Let's think about Mark's statement, "...trying to silence the voices and opinions of everyone else around the world."

This is also the ugly face of the Dem party in our area. Smart people that are actually smart and intellectual are usually open minded to the opinions [dogma] of others because we know that we might learn something from listening, and we genuinely respect intellectual diversity. We learned it from our parents and our culture and from going to great schools and by studying hard.

And, as I've concluded over the years, Dogma is the destroyer.

And, as I concur with the Pope's recent comments, Do Good Deeds.

Rule of law. Freedom of speech. Open, respectful debate of issues. Checks and balances of power.

This is what has made our country great and powerful and desirable by those around the world that are willing to leave their friends and family and perhaps risk everything to move to America and to become an American. And respecting our country's rule of law is the first step to becoming an American.

It IS time to restore balance & ethics to our community and to our country.

And, it takes good people taking action to ensure that this happens.

"All that is necessary for evil to triumph is that good people do nothing." Indeed.

What does all this have to do with High Speed Rail and Jerry Brown and company's attempt to shove it down Burlingame's throat? My discussion has EVERYTHING to do with HSR and Jerry Brown's evil machine.

Please vote and act accordingly.

Peace.

The HSR is all about The Money.

And, Joe, you're right, the Dem party isn't really about Communism or Socialism...promises of Free Stuff is just to appease and ultimately to control the masses. The nuance between the two doesn't matter, it's the slippery slope of the culture that either promotes. Get something for nothing. You don't really have to work super hard. Individual rights and individual responsibility don't matter as much as the smoke and mirrors of The False Promise of Utopia that will never happen.

What is really at the core of the Dem party and their evil reality? Why can't Burlingamers and reasonable, sane, good people stop HSR?

Because HSR is not a benefit to the environment and it is not a benefit to transportation. It's really just all about The Money, and it's all about the people that are going to make a bunch of money in the construction of it. And the masses get further appeased and ultimately controlled in the "Make Work" nature of spending $67B...$100B...$200B. How much money will The People actually be fleeced out of now and forever, as we're enslaved with more and more public debt and thus a weaker and weaker community and thus higher and higher taxes and thus more and more enslavement to government and less and less individual rights and freedom.

This video of Jerry Maguire, pretty much sums it up!

Show Me The Money!
http://youtu.be/OaiSHcHM0PA

pat giorni

http://www.smdailyjournal.com/articles/opinions/2015-01-13/letter-high-speed-rail-bankruptcy/1776425136512.html

Jennifer

http://www.capradio.org/articles/2015/11/12/new-ballot-measure-moves-high-speed-rail-bonds-to-water-projects/

Two Republican elected officials have submitted a 2016 ballot measure that would shift $8 billion in unspent high-speed rail bond funds to water storage projects.

The initiative by Sen. Bob Huff (R-San Dimas) and Board of Equalization member George Runner is a direct challenge to the high-speed rail project championed by Governor Jerry Brown.

Huff says he supported the high-speed rail bonds approved by voters in 2008 – but that’s not the project getting built now.

“It’s a lot more expensive, it’s gonna take a lot more taxpayer money to build it, and it’s not high-speed. And instead, we’re building this thing where nobody wants it and it’s been very divisive,“ Huff says. “So I believe the voters would agree, let’s take this money and put it somewhere where we actually know there’s an infrastructure need, and that’s water.”

The measure would put a newly-created board appointed by regional water agencies in charge of spending the money – as well as another $2.7 billion already set aside for storage projects in the water bond California voters approved last year.

Peter Garrison

Please, please, please happen.

Jennifer

More from the Merc, today:

"If a sunny outlook and the ability to ignore bad news were the only attributes needed to run a huge enterprise, California's high-speed rail project would be rolling along.

Because there's no doubt that Dan Richard, the California High-Speed Rail Authority's chairman, and Jeff Morales, the authority's chief executive, excel on both counts.

Richard's irrational exuberance was on full display when the bullet train bosses solicited companies worldwide to form a partnership with the authority and got no takers -- at least none willing to risk any of their own money.

Some of the 36 big construction and engineering firms that responded expressed reservations about the funding of the project, the likely need for long-term state subsidies once service begins and whether the project can meet its construction schedule.

Richard told the Los Angeles Times that he was encouraged by all this:

"You wouldn't have seen all these people put ink to paper if they didn't think this was a real program," he said. "That's what I took out of this."

Now we know: The bullet train is a real program.

Much worse than the look-on-the-bright-side attitude, though, is the tendency to ignore bad news altogether -- and to keep it secret.

A confidential 2013 report by the authority's main project management contractor estimated that the cost of building the first phase of the rail line "had risen 31 percent to $40 billion," the Times reported.

But the rail authority did not release that report by New York-based Parsons Brinckerhoff, declining a Public Records Act request. The Times obtained a copy of it from a source.

Morales told the newspaper he was unaware of the Parsons Brinckerhoff cost projection. Really? In most organizations, heads would roll if the CEO was kept in the dark about a projection of a 31 percent cost overrun.

Some Assembly Republicans asked Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins, D-San Diego, to subpoena records from the high-speed rail authority: the 2013 confidential report, a list of state officials briefed on the report, internal documents discussing the report and records pertaining to preparation of a 2014 business plan and two later reports to the Legislature.

Atkins is unlikely to comply. She should, to assure skeptical voters that they're getting good information, if nothing else.

After all, voters approved a bond measure for the high-speed rail seven years ago when they were told it would cost $33 billion for the whole thing. That ballooned to $98 billion, only to be trimmed back to $68 billion for a lesser project than voters had approved.

What Californians really deserve is another vote on the whole project. They're not likely to get that, but they should at least have the best information available on what it will cost them."

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