In Charles McCollester's Utopian fantasy world, we would all zip from place to place on the maglev trains powered by something other than a known fuel source (magic perhaps?), after those horrible private, profitable railroads cease to exist ("The Fundamentals Are Anything But Sound," Jan. 20 Perspectives).
Since the American railroads transport more than 80 percent of everything that moves within the United States, how does Mr. McCollester propose to supply us with the things we need? I have to believe that he has never actually ridden on a maglev system, as I have.
The system running from the Shanghai airport to a spot close to the center of the city is the only operating maglev system in the world. If he had he would understand why there were recent riots in Hong Kong against the decision of the Chinese government to dump more money into high-speed rail systems in China.
Even in a dictatorship, it is difficult to force something on people that they know is too expensive, too unreliable and just plain stupid.