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Barack Obama wants to spend as much as a trillion dollars on the nation's infrastructure, from roads to bridges. A video on his transition Web site even touts the economic advantages of fixing potholes. Why so car-centric? A new article in the Washington Monthly claims that spending some of that money on rail lines instead of roads could pay dividends.

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Next time you're stuck in gridlock, keep in mind that many American cities had fantastic public rail systems until Big Auto bought up all the tracks and scrapped them to make way for cars. The Observer reminds us that "it did not have to be like this."

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