Future of Urban Transportation

In the field of transportation, there are many controversial and crucial factors that should be addressed. First, the future of urban transportation has been clearly marked by improvements in various transport modes, especially that of the high-speed rail. The bullet train has been operational in several European and Asian countries such as Japan and China with the United States also developing Stimulus Plan. At the same time, administration within various government authorities faces issues and problems that are either unique to a specific authority or common to all of them. Another issue concerns the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) that has had mixed impacts on the economy of the member states. Finally, the Southwest Airlines has also made a huge impact on the low-cost carriers today mostly in terms of the operational cost being streamlined. Therefore, the current paper aims at addressing the above-stated issues.

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Stimulus Plan for High-Speed Rail Road

In my opinion, the Stimulus Plan for the railroad will not work for several reasons. First, the program will just consume a huge proportion of the budget with no real tangible rewards. This disadvantage can be explained by the fact that, in America, the number of people who use trains is minimal with most individuals preferring personal cars. At the same time, the prices of the tickets for high-speed rail routes might turn out to be expensive, which might result in irregular boarding or a decrease in the number of passengers of the lower economic status (Fund, 2016). Thus, with a reduced number of passengers, the supposed benefits of the high-speed rail will not be realized as thought before. Instead, the amount of funding that the government has set aside for the project could be used for improving the infrastructure of the current transportation system.

Issues and Problems within Federal Jurisdiction and State Authorities

Federal, state and local authorities vary in jurisdictions across the country with different organizations but common features. Regardless of the design, these authorities have an impact on people, especially in terms of infrastructure. Legal and regulatory issues are some of the problems that are common to the federal, local, and state jurisdictions. On the other hand, the legislation and policies in such areas of jurisdiction as roads, parks, and forests are among problems that are unique to state authorities. Other issues include the legitimate qualification for licensure, as well as the drafting of laws that protect citizens from criminals or unlicensed contractors. As for the federal government, the formulation of policies on expenditure can be an issue that is characteristic of federal authority and is not experienced by the state and local governments. The federal government is in charge of national expenditure while the state and local governments are mostly concerned with the development and implementation of projects using federal funds.

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Disadvantages of NAFTA

It should be acknowledged that NAFTA provided countries with an opportunity to engage in free exchange of goods and services. However, it has also had many adverse effects on the economy of the United States. First, NAFTA has led to the loss of employment in most manufacturing industries in the country, specifically in California and Texas (Lauby, 2011). This implication was caused by the movement of industries from these areas to Mexico, a neighboring NAFTA member country where labor was cheaper than in the United States. They included motor vehicle, home appliance, and computer manufacturing industries. Additionally, NAFTA has also led to the reduced employee wages in the United States as a result of the migration of jobs to other countries. Most workers who remained in the industries in the United States had a reduced bargaining power and could not have higher wages as most industries threatened with moving out in case employees demanded higher wages. On the other hand, there was a degradation of the Mexican environment by most of the companies in the United States with an aim of keeping costs low (Lauby, 2011). These reasons explain why NAFTA should be either reformed or totally disbanded.

Impact of Southwest Airlines

Most airlines have resolved to focus on cost cutting and consciousness with an aim of marinating low prices. It has become a part of their corporate culture to keep maintenance costs low, which has led to success within the market in the volatile economy (Lawton, 2016). For instance, Southwest Airlines has focused on reducing its cost structure to become the lowest in the industry but still the most profitable. At the same time, most airlines have also resorted to mergers or even acquisitions as exemplified by Delta buying Northwest Airlines and the merger that occurred between United Airlines and Continental Airlines. The changes have produced better results for these airlines with leaner operations and profits after the economic recession (Lawton, 2016). Other examples of mergers include that of the Royal Dutch Airlines and Air France, which has led to the maximization of the cost savings, retaining of customers, and profitability. Lastly, the airlines that have merged enjoy an increased number of pilots and other employees from various cultures, which makes them have a global appeal.

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The high-speed rail is highly likely not to be successful as a result of the reduced number of passengers who can either not afford the tickets or have preferences for cars. In relation to administration, federal, state and local governments face both common and unique problems. The federal government is in charge of national expenditure while the state and local governments are mostly concerned with the development and implementation of projects. It should also be concluded that, although NAFTA gave countries an opportunity to engage in the free exchange of goods and services, it has also had many implications for the economy of the United States. Lastly, Southwest Airlines has focused on reducing its cost structure, which has been emulated by most airlines, leading to increased profits for various companies.

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