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The high-speed rail system in California will be the subject of the endeavor. In many respects, this project will both help and hurt society. As a result, this essay will not address the project's moral rationale. Additionally, it will assess how to treat those who will be impacted by the endeavor in a way that is morally and legally acceptable. Additionally, the paper will determine whether the project's goals are morally acceptable in light of justice conceptions like Rawls' and cost-benefit analysis. The article will examine the advantages and disadvantages of alternate designs before expressing the author's opinion on the matter. The California high-speed rail network proposes to jettison travelers from LA to San Francisco in two and half hours. Driving upwards of 5 hours, the high-speed rail system will follow the standard Maglev structure utilized in Japan. The system ultimately recommends paying for itself by the sheer passenger numbers who will choose a cheaper commute to northern California, thus, will whip up to 1000 passengers from the base to the crown of California in record speed (Akil, 2).
California high speed rail network escalates eminent domain legal battles
The California high speed rail Authority is under pressure to deliver property to construction contracts. This makes the state increasingly taking off the gloves and going to the court under eminent domain law to get the land required for a bullet train line via the central San Joaquin Valley. The state public works board adopted 192 resolutions asserting a general requirement to use eminent realm to obtain about 425 acres of land in the valley. In Fresno County, the republic has monitored by filling more than four dozen renowned territory lawsuits against property owners. Assembly bill 1138 by Jim Patterson, R-Fresno, suggested barring California High-speed rail authority from launching condemnation action. Unless the rail agency recognizes where and when it will get the money required to construct applicable sections of the train line and certifies that the segment has acquired all of the environmental clearance (Tim, 3).
The bill was voted at the state capitol assembly transportation committee. Three members voted but were outnumbered by six votes from Democrats. Patterson argued that he worries that much of the $68 billion required to construct the railway from San Francisco to Los Angeles will not materialize, this will leave an unfinished segment of track sitting in the valley. Currently, the republic has around $6 billion accessible for construction in the valley comprising of $3 billion in federal stimulus and Obama administration transportation funds. Besides, the lawsuits continue to challenge the rail agency.
Like Patterson, Chris Mathys is not a fan of California controversial high-speed rail project. He was the former city council member and affirmed tax-fighter is philosophically divergent to the state spending billions on taxpayer money on a 220 mph passenger train. He believed that the country was just doing business when the rail authority and public works board went to court to take a piece of property he possesses on G Street in downtown Fresno. He is one of the 50 possessions that the state has filed renowned territory lawsuits in Fresno county superior court and the pace of the trials is hastening. The state has submitted 30 condemnation cases since 1st march consisting of 7 notices of pending legal activities recorded by the single state day. This does not include renowned territory charges filed by the transportation state department for its plan to move Highway 99 between Ashlan and Clinton avenues in west-central Fresno to pave the way for the high-speed tracks.
The increasing number of lawsuits indicate the pressure on the state to play catch up on obtaining land it requires to construct the rail system. At the mid-march, the rail authority had achieved to secure possession of 164 of the 1,066 property parcel it wants in the 1st two construction segments of the railway between Madera and the Tulare-Kern county line.
As presently as three years ago, the rail authority CEO Jeff Morales was assured that fruitful discussions could permit the agency to purchase the most of the property it wants using renowned territory only as a last resort. However, the property holders have complained that the agency’s offers are below the fair value. Thus, this has slowed the process. Mathys and other property holders told Bee that their continuing negotiations with the rail agency lead to settlements with which they are contented and will invalidate their charges. Mathys stipulated a key for him, and other property holders are getting a second appraisal to back their assertions on the value of the land (Tim, 2).
A year after the rail authority’s appraisers surveyed her property, Susan Martin-Tanielian asserted that the agency conclusively made its first offer for the two-thirds of an acre wanted along the front of the site. She said the proposal was not reasonable and was not awful. They had already debated a number in our head that was fair knowing their real estate and what it could take to substitute it. The company had made a counteroffer and was about to take advantage of the state propose to compensate up to $5,000 for a second appraisal when the agent made an offer that hit the number I needed.
Fresno attorney C William Brewer has various customers with properties in the route of the rail in Fresno and Kings Counties. One is a warehouse possession on Thorne Avenue near downtown Fresno for which a condemnation hearing set nearly two years after the renowned charges filed by the state. Brewer thinks that they will reach a consensus and no one is likely to go on trial. Most of the brewer clients have been troubled by the concession process, but one of his client who first came in was satisfied with the offer. The majority of others are at the other end of the spectrum that the proposals were not fair and not reasonable. There are continually significant gaps between what the rail authority is offering and what the owner wants for their possessions. The customers from Madera and Fresno Counties seem to be more inclined to engage the state in concession for their belongings as they are more focused on the state right to take but on defending their interests in regards to compensation (Tim, 4).
In Kings County, the opposition of rail project has been more vigorous because of their propensity to dig in their heels. The republic has adopted twenty-six resolutions authorizing condemnation against properties in Kings. However, there is no renowned territory charges have yet been filed in Kings County superior court.
Another attorney, Glendale based Glenn block; a California renowned territory law group has a dozen of customers in the valley. Two of which are being charged and the third one likely to be charged within days. So far, they have a critical divergent in the value of the property but are in the procedure of acquiring another appraisal. Also, they expect that they will be capable of making substantial headway in the cases (Tim, 2).
Moral justification of the project
Tavani (3), note that morality is a system that consisted of ethical rules and principles. Moral standards can be understood as rules of conduct which are very similar to the idea of policies. Policies are rules of conduct that have a wide range of application. They can range from formal laws to informal, implicit guidelines for actions. The provisions of behavior that operate at the macro-ethical level guide people to frame and adhere to social policies. For instance, the principle of social utility is concerned with promoting the highest good for the most significant number. It can be utilized as a litmus test for determining whether California High Speed Rail project can be justified on moral grounds. In this case, the policy in question would be explained by showing the benefits California High-Speed Rail brings to the society as an overall social good.
The California high-speed rail network proposes to jettison travelers from LA to San Francisco in two and half hours. Driving upwards of 5 hours, the high-speed rail system will follow the standard Maglev structure utilized in Japan. The system will sheer numbers of passengers that opt for a less expensive commute to northern California. Thus, this project will provide intercity passenger revenue, benefits both intercity and urban high-speed train passengers by paying net of fares, reduce of airside delay for air passengers and reduce the aircraft operating costs. Furthermore, the project will minimize highway delay for both intercity and auto trips and reduce accidents and air pollutions costs from intercity and urban auto trips (Akil, 3).
Morally permissible means of treating the people who will be affected by the project.
The California Rail Authority is issuing monetary compensation for the people affected by the project. The California rail authority is negotiating for the purchase of the land where the rail will pass. In some case, the rail authority has been trying to work with the property holders to agree on the fair value of the property. For the first construction section between Fresno and Madera, the state issued notices to property holders in May, June and July 2012. The country is doing their due diligence and doing what they can to work with them for the last three years. The schedule is growing tighter to offer land to contractors to construct something. Ron Tutor, the CEO of Tutor Perini Corp contractor, plans to seek compensation from the state for an eighteen-month delay in the start of construction.
Morally permissible ends
According to John Rawls (4), justice is a virtue of social institutions as truth is of the systems of the thought. Laws and organizations should be reformed or abolished if they are unjust no matter how efficient and well-organized they are. Every individual owns an inviolability founded on justice that even the social welfare as a whole cannot override. For this purpose, justice denies that the loss of freedom for some is made right by a more significant good shared by others. It does not allow the sacrifices imposed on a few shared are outweighed the more substantial sum of advantages enjoyed by many. Thus, a just society liberties for equal citizenship are taken as settled and the right is secured by justice which is not subject to political bargaining or the calculus of the social interests. The only thing that allows people to comply is an erroneous theory which lacks a better one. Analogously, an injustice is endurable only when it is essential to avoid an even more significant injustice.
John Rawls advocate for a just system in which it puts the interests of all the people in the society. For instance, the California Rail Authority is negotiating for a fair value of the land the rail will pass through. It is doing the justice according to Rawls expressions as it does not force the affected population to take the monetary compensation, but they are further considering what this populace need for fair compensation. Rawls also argues that the virtue of institutions is fairness. He assumes that people have to negotiate with each other under what he calls a veil of ignorance, e.g., without knowing their social and economic positions, their special interests in the community or even their capabilities and talents. This is a situation that all participants will agree on the most basic institutional society arrangements. Rawls considers institutions of a given society to be just if they arranged according to the principles that apparently could have consented upon by rational persons in the original position. An example of Rawls application in the California High-Speed Rail Authority is their need to be fair to the affected populace.
Will look at the cost-benefit analysis of the California High-Speed Rail. Thayer, Silicon, and Tornado (3) state that the cost-benefit analysis estimates and tools up the equal monetary value of the costs and benefits to the society of project to determine whether they are worthwhile. The project needs a cost $68 billion to be complete. The benefits of the project is that the cities will be connected to the state major metropolitan segments. There will be a reduction of tedious drives with a roundtrip travel time of 6-8 hours which will be reduced to 3 hours. Neglected city cores will be redeveloped; new business will move in, residents will have a chance to seek new job opportunities in San Francisco and L.A. For this reason, the California High-Speed Rail is a viable project to the future of California (Kaldor, 2).
According to Reinhold Niebuhr (American theologian 1892-19171), the human capacity for justice makes democracy possible, but the human inclination for injustice makes democracy necessary. Therefore, the California high-speed rail project faces some challenges from people with self-interest. Self- interest cannot drive political morality or institutions as various institutional prescriptions flow from adding recognition of confined benevolence to self-interest recognition (David Hume, 1711-1776). Some of the property holders require using the eminent domain procedure as the way to kill the program. The property owner does not want to engage in an appraisal or even entertain what the state is doing making it a challenge.
Moreover, Patterson a member of assembly argued that he worries that much of the $68 billion required to build the rail line from San Francisco to Los Angeles will not materialize, this will leave an unfinished segment of track sitting in the valley. Currently, the republic has around $6 billion accessible for construction in the valley comprising of $3 billion in federal stimulus and Obama administration transportation funds. Besides, the lawsuits continue to challenge the rail agency. His conception advantage is that it will save enormous pressure that will be imposed on the taxpayer. Its disadvantage is that he declines all the benefits that the project will have to California economy.
Conclusively, John Rawls advocate for a just system in which it puts the interests of all the people in the society. Which, in turn, the California Rail Authority is negotiating for a fair value of the land the rail will pass through. It is doing the justice according to Rawls expressions as it does not force the affected population to take the monetary compensation, but they are further considering what this populace need for fair compensation.
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