Going off the rails in Wasco

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The southern terminus of the first phase of California bullet train is expected to be Wasco. You may be asking, "Where's Wasco?" For the record, Wasco is a city of about 25,000 people (including roughly 5,000 prisoners) northeast of Bakersfield, in Kern County. If you're asking, "Why Wasco?' well, that's more complicated. Zócalo Public Square columnist Joe Mathews says that like so many things in California, it comes down to money and politics. The prospect of traveling to Wasco may not be a boon for train ridership, but Mathews says he's found a lot of reasons why the Central Valley town is worthy of our attention.



Joe Mathews