Californians were sold a lovely fantasy in the depths of the 2008 recession: a bullet train
that would take them from Los Angeles to San Francisco in less than three hours.
The project was to usher in a new age of high-speed rail that would eventually span
the whole length of the west coast, from San Diego to Vancouver,
over the desert to Las Vegas, and, finally, all the way across the continent.
California voters authorized the sale of $9 billion in state bonds that year, with the expectation that the Los Angeles-San Francisco line would be operational by 2020.