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Julian , California
April 11, 2012     The Julian News
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April 11, 2012

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April 11, 2012 California Commentary Stunning Shift On High Speed Rail by Jon Coupal Nothing epitomizes the abject failure of California governance more than the so-called High Speed Rail Project or, as it has been derisively labeled, High Speed Fail. To recap, in 2008 voters narrowly approved a $10 billion down payment for the construction of a high speed rail network between the Bay Area and Los Angeles that promoters said would cost a total of $33.6 billion. A year later, the High Speed Rail Authority, the governing bodY overseeing the project, revealed that the train would actually cost $42.6 billion. Later, that estimate exploded to $98.5 billion, three times the original cost projection. Even the project's more ardent supporters have expressed dismay at the mismanagement and lack of transparency at the High Speed Rail Authority. Particularly galling has been the failure of the Authority to advance a credible business plan. Its efforts in this regard have been amateurish at best and, at worse, slick salesmanship with no substance. It is truly sad - and unnecessary - that we're at this point. Prior to the 2008 vote, the Reason Foundation and the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Foundation sponsored "A Due Diligence Study" of the HSR plan which found the high speed train would cost much more than promised, possibly as much as $100 billion or even more. Corroborating the HJTF/ Reason study, more recent reviews by the University of California and Legislative Analyst's Office have cast further doubts on the feasibility of project. If this project were wfiolly within the purview of the private sector, it would have been terminated long ago. When private capital is at stake, there is a time at which responsible business managers grasp the folly of pouring good money after bad. Not so in the public sector -- particularly as it relates to so- called "mega-projects." Indeed, the strategy of the Authority is transparent: No matter how little sense this project makes, if they break ground and invest millions (or billions), California will have no choice but to complete the project. Californians may have had enough of this foolishness. All available polling on the issue of High Speed Rail reveals that, if the measure were on the ballot today, it would fail. In short, the citizens of California want a "do- over." The cost is too high, the projections of ridership, speed and convenience were fantasy (and every knows it) and, in the current recession, there are so many more deserving places to send scarce taxpayer dollars. " Now, in a last ditch effort to save this boondoggle from an almost certain death, the authority announced at the end of last week that it has reduced the projected cost to about $68 billion. But they do this by changing the fundamental nature of the project which was sold to California voters as a standalone project with dedicated rails and stations. Although not entirely clear, it appears that the Authority is melding the HSR system with traditional rail. Does this make sense from the perspective of rational transportation policy? Probably not. But the bigger problem for the Authority is that it is running out of options and there is very little time to study the latest iteration before the Authority asks for bond financing from the Legislature. What is undeniable about the latest plan is that it is most certainly not the project that the voters approved three years ago. For that reason, everyone -- including HSR proponents and detractors -- should get behind the effort by Senator Doug LaMalfa to put the issue back before the public with a more realistic cost and performance projections. In this era where both taxpayer dollars and Legislative credibility are in short Supply, Californians are entitled to nothing less. Jon Coupal is president of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association -- California's largest grass-roots taxpayer organization dedicated to the protection of Proposition 13 and the advancement of taxpayers' rights. R.F.D. VALAII-AVA [ NOPE[ rrGARDEN- - /AEGOI',NAKICK S,:rF_AM? ,l TAT'S -II] PEP  -- ')  BLUE RIBBON wE Irl RiGm'-- Bill RALLV..-?,,.,_ , BLH'"F|GVF--AR!! AGOOD Ill AVL   PEAR? 1.t/A GI=.A'IF by Mike Marland Week y SUDOKU by Linda Thistle 6 8 2 6 9 4 9 1 4 4 6 9 1 4 8 7 5 8 1 6 7 3 2 3 Place a number in the empty boxes in such a way that each row across, each column down and each small 9-box square contains all of the numbers from one to nine. DIFFICULTY THIS WEEK: * * * * Moderate ** Challenging * ** HOO BOY] 2012 King Features Synd., Inc. i The Julian News 13 HOMES CABINS . LAND . RENTALS . .PROPERTY MANAGEMENT , VACATION RENTALS II 2o19 Main Street 7(iiDi 705 I''lll Shelter Valley 2br, 2ba, 2car with lots of trees, outbuildings and RV carport. Wrap around covered porch for outdoor living. $119,000 This Cuyamaca Lake view custom home in on 4+ acres 3 br, 2ba, 3 car garage, guest suite, 1330 sf bonus room and many custom features $1,375,000 Mountain Home with views to the ocean! Great family home with privacy and easy access. NOW Offered at $364,500 Truly custom in Julian Estates/3 bedroom, Great Locale, ample parking, easy access, 3 bath, den, 2 car garage on 6.89 acres, wellon property, 2 well maintained buildings 2 master suites, one handicap accessible, and a 700 square foot rental cabin. Mature forest plus orchard and horse property. $697,000 $539,000 Business sold separately $375,000 3 Bdrm/2 Bath on 1.36 acres in lovely Pine Hills. Detached office/art studio. Garage, Handicapped Accessible. 4 Redwood Decks. 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Horse Center continued from page 12 programs to the public, without the support of Teresa Manley, Natasha Haugen, and Mitch and Sally Stilson, who have provided them with picnic tables, fencing, horse shelter, and the gracious permission to use the beautiful Meadow View Inn property. The day was also supported by fellow board members, local parents, and volunteers. For more information about the San Diego Horse Riding Center, Inc, call (760) 519-6079/760-670- 7357 or visit our webpage at www. We look forward to hearing from you. Donations welcome - Volunteers always appreciated ACROSS 1 Mary's pet 5 Sleepwear, for short 8 Commo- tions 12 Brit's exclamation 13 Debtor's letters 14 Domesti= cate 15 Made moist 17 Send forth 18 Lance 19 Crouches 21 Line of fashion? 24 Boom times 25 Auction actions 28 Asian desert 30 Animation frame 33 Historic time 34 Bolivian city 35 Guitar's cousin 36 Jewel 37 War god 38 Cruising 39 Pick a target 41 Profound 43 Jamaican music style 46 Blunder 50 Satan's specialty 51 Greek threatened by a sword 'wr --i,-- _,ll,l,,,,,,,zge WeeklySUDOKU --Answer a 8  L S 9 6 L Samanthaweaver ,U,-/-J,-,,U, 1 L 9 g 8 L 6 ' 6 I. L t 9  9 It was American humorist Evan Esar who defined a zoo as "an excellent place to study the habits of human beings." L L a 9 8 t 6 The New York Times Best Seller list was first published on April 6 17 g L g 8 9 I. 9, 1942. Since that time, only eight authors have managed to have 9 8 S 6 t L L books place No. 1 on both the fiction and nonfiction lists. Those S 6 I. a 9 t 8 L who have accomplished that feat include Ernest Hemingway, Jimmy Buffett, William Styron, Dr. Seuss and John Steinbeck. L 8 t, 6  ; I. 9 lf you're planning a trip to New Orleans, you might want to keep in ; 9 t 8 I. L 6  mind the following law: It's illegal in that city to curse a firefighter while he or she is engaged in official duties. IC00g Crossword I 2 i __ 12 15 18 25 26 33 36 43 44 5O 54 57 54 Flintstones' pet 55 Wildebeest 56 Aid 57 Lily variety 58 Tackle's teammate 59 Slithery DOWN 1 Covers 2 Now, on a memo D 23 41 142 I I 52 8 Enjoyed thoroughly 9 Syrian city 10 Leave out 11 Collections 16 Before 20 Classroom surprise 22 Culture medium 23 Segway alternative 25 Plead 3 Jerry Herman 26 Rage musical 27 Harmful 4 Circumvent 29 Diamond 5 Wrestling win corner 6 Scarborough 31 --out a of MSNBC living 7 Lather 32 Meadow 2012 King Features Synd.. Inc. 34 Dalai- 38 Iraq War helicopter 40 Nome dome home 42 Id cou0ter part 43 Cincinnati team 44 1960s singer Sands 45 Rim 47 Run away 48 Toppled 49 Catch sight of 52 Massachu- setts cape 53 Pie filling? America's first vending machines were found in New York City train stations; they dispensed gum. The European sturgeon (also known as the beluga sturgeon) is the source of the highly coveted beluga caviar, which is the world's most expensive, bringing up to $5,000 per pound. This sturgeon can live more than 100 years and is the largest freshwater fish in the world; the record holder, caught in 1827, was 24 feet long and weighed 3,460 pounds. In a 1982 issue of the magazine American Film, a writer named Chuck Ross claimed that he retyped the screenplay to the 1942 film "Casablanca," changing only the title and one of the character's names, and submitted it to 217 agencies. Of the 85 who responded, only eight recognized it as "Casablanca," though it seemed familiar to another 25. Three of the agencies thought it might be commercially viable, while one thought it should be turned into a novel. The Oscar-wining screenplay was rejected outright by 38 of the agencies. Thought for the Day: "The successful revolutionary is a statesman, the unsuccessful one a criminal." -- Erich Fromm 2012 King Features Syndicate, Inc, Home is a shelter from storms - all sorts of storms. -- William J. Bennett -- 00Jztg Crossword -- A ns we rs Solution time: 25 mins. A-1 llalNllo s  l.lnlNllo N I (3 S_____A__ 3-1_-I E)=IH III ZII V3 S 139 a :* nlzlvlalvll v u g iio00ili_00 SIV  dS ST -TE w v lnlol, I,', v s I oovIs Iwv Egg- : Producing I. Iowa 2. Ohio 3. Pennsylvania 4. Indiana 5. California 6. Texas 7. Michigan 8. Minnesota 9. Florida 10. Nebraska Source: American Egg Board 2012 King Features Syndicate, Inc.