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While riding the Shinkansen from Nagoya to Kyoto and back last year, I got a real eye opener. It wasn't just the amazing scenes of sleepy villages and snowy bamboo hillsides that passed by between dark mountain tunnels but rather the vision that had gone into imagining the future. I could picture a group of people excitedly talking about the possibilities of moving people at high speed, smoothly and comfortably, all across the country, freeing up road space and stimulating economic opportunity.

Before you get too excited by the headline, I should clarify that by "America," I mean South America. And by "South America," I mean Argentina. An editorial in the International Railway Journal strikes an optimistic note on the surge of plans for high speed rail construction and expansion worldwide, focusing particular attention on projects in Argentina, Italy, and China. David Briginshaw, editor-in-chief of the trade publication, is confident that, "These events look set to have a profound impa

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