Guest Opinion: High-speed rail — the Great California Perpetual-Motion Machine | August 20, 2010 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

Spectrum - August 20, 2010

Guest Opinion: High-speed rail — the Great California Perpetual-Motion Machine

by Don Barnby

Some People of Vision decided that it would be good to build a gigantic perpetual-motion machine in California that would provide enormous wealth and be self-sustaining for all time.

This story contains 988 words.

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A 19-year resident of Menlo Park, Don Barnby is a co-founder, director and former president & CEO of a Bay Area biotech company. He can be e-mailed at


Posted by wary traveler, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 24, 2010 at 2:28 pm

Very clever.

Posted by Enoughnonsense, a resident of another community
on Aug 24, 2010 at 4:20 pm

Why does this paper continue to support such nonsense and outright fearmongering.."thousand of acres of lovely trees" this is of course an out right lie or this authors idea of "SI-FI" fiction humor

Posted by Tom, a resident of Midtown
on Aug 24, 2010 at 6:03 pm

HaHaHa! That's a good one.

It won't stop the machine, though. The greens in Palo Alto clinched their own demise. Now they will need to live with it, including the fiscal disaster that will spell the end to many of their cherished programs like state parks and preserved lands. The global warming hysteria has a real price attached to it.

Posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of Midtown
on Aug 24, 2010 at 9:45 pm

Walter_E_Wallis is a registered user.

The railroad right of way was there a century ago and will remain there irrespective of the chattering class. No matter how many Native American artifacts they salt the ROW with, no matter how many endangered plants and snakes they bring to the battle something is going to change along that way. Electrification and closing grade crossings is an absolute minimum. Whatever else happens is better resolved by reasoned debate, not the caterwauling that has disgraced these pages on this topic.

Posted by Anon, a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 24, 2010 at 10:22 pm

Walter E Wallis is so right on this.

I never believed people in Palo Alto could ever possibly be as backwards as they seem to be on this train issue. But here we are.

Speaking of "Perpetual Motion Machines"... what are our freeways and millions of cars, as well as our 24/7 airports and thousands of airplanes if not perpetual motion machines??

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