---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: barry levine
Date: Thu, May 14, 2015 at 8:42 AM
Subject: re: Technology That Could Have Prevented Amtrak Derailment Was Absent
To the Editor;
Although Americans are largely allergic to the word, there are problems to which socialism is the right answer. Head of the list is the national defense. Our armed forces are paid by and answerable to (i.e. owned by) the public. To open this function to competitive bidding between private contractors would be stupid. Likewise, although firefighting could be provided by competing private companies with redundant resources, Americans overwhelmingly prefer that this be a government service, owned by the public.
Where shall we place railroads on the spectrum between what's best served as a government function and what's best solved by the invisible hand of the market? When Americans are dying because competing railroad companies haven't implemented known safety technology, we should consider putting rail transport into the public column.
Barry Haskell Levine