In cities all across the United States, millions of dollars are being spent on new railway projects to supposedly facilitate better, faster public transit. However, most of these same cities already have adequate bus systems to provide consumers with the transportation they need. The problem is that there's often a stigma attached to riding the bus; it's seen by many as a symbol of the lower class and something to be a bit ashamed of. I can definitely see this in the area we live, and perhaps it's because a majority of us have ready access to a car, or because of convenient new products like Uber, but I don't know many people--child or adult--who ride the bus.
There's a lesson in economics that can be taken away from this interesting article: the transit agencies described in the article are exhibiting economic inefficiency. They're failing to maximize their output based on their input by attempting to create alternative systems of transit when a viable solution exists in the form of putting more resources into advertising the existing bus systems. In this example, the consumers (commuters) would still be provided with their economic service (transportation to a certain location) if more money was spent on changing the image of buses, and thus the system would be more efficient.
How successful do you think advertising would be at encouraging consumers to ride the buses instead of sleek but costly trains? Does this article change your opinion on public transit systems at all? Can you think of any other examples of economic inefficiency that you see in society?