Frank N. Wilner, Contributing Editor

Frank N. Wilner, Contributing Editor

Frank N. Wilner is author of six books, including, Amtrak: Past, Present, Future; Understanding the Railway Labor Act; and, Railroad Mergers: History, Analysis, Insight. He earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in economics and labor relations from Virginia Tech. He has been assistant vice president, policy, for the Association of American Railroads; a White House appointed chief of staff at the Surface Transportation Board; and director of public relations for the United Transportation Union. He is a past president of the Association of Transportation Law Professionals. Wilner drafted the railroad section of the Heritage Foundation’s Mandate for Change (Volumes I and II), which were policy blueprints for the two Reagan Administrations; and was a guest columnist for the Cato Institute’s Regulation magazine.

Tuesday, 28 February 2017 23:36

Rusty Spike Award for Dow’s hypocrisy

Some three decades ago, the Association of American Railroads bestowed Rusty Spike Awards to recognize hypocritical posturing by those seeking legislative or regulatory advantage at the expense of railroads.

Monday, 13 February 2017 18:33

Congress: A noisy hall with a nightly brawl

With early indications that the Trump Administration is a political version of the Jerry Springer show, expect an atypical legislative session, with the Republican majority sometimes in open conflict with a Republican President who is unpredictable, impetuous, lacking previous government experience and quick to take vengeance on those critical of him.

Thursday, 02 February 2017 09:09

STB, FRA judicial ally under attack

If Judge Neil Gorsuch is Senate-confirmed to the Supreme Court, federal regulatory agencies such as the Surface Transportation Board (STB) and Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) could be closer to losing a handy, trusted and effective judicial ally in their interpretations of the statutes they administer.

Monday, 30 January 2017 07:11

Did STB capitulate to Trump and Lenin?

Expediency over principle describes a unanimous vote Jan. 27 by the three Surface Transportation Board (STB) members—Acting Chairman Ann Begeman, a Republican, and Democrats Dan Elliott and Deb Miller.

Monday, 23 January 2017 11:17

STB's Begeman: Head, heart in conflict

News item: Republican Ann Dawn Begeman, 52, was confirmed by the Senate in December to a second term—expiring Dec. 31, 2020—on the five-person Surface Transportation Board (STB). Expect her to be named STB Chairman by President Trump, succeeding Democrat Dan Elliott, who was President Obama’s choice as Chairman.

Saturday, 17 December 2016 17:34

What’s in a name? Don’t ask Amtrak

Notwithstanding this era of fake news, there remain stories you just cannot make up—instances where truth is, indeed, stranger than fiction.

Thursday, 08 December 2016 00:05

Amidst concerns, optimism for 2017

When Herbert Hoover was President and Republicans controlled the White House and both congressional chambers, there was produced the 1930 Smoot-Hawley tariff boosting import duties to record levels, sparking a global trade war and contributing to the depth and length of the Great Depression.

Thursday, 17 November 2016 15:17

AAR "anxious" for Trump's STB shift

Regarding the Association of American Railroads Nov. 17 request that the U.S. Surface Transportation Board delay regulatory proposals until the U.S. Senate confirms a full slate of Board members appointed by President-elect Donald J. Trump,  waiting until all STB vacant seats are filled could stall any further STB rulemakings until summer 2017 or later.

Monday, 07 November 2016 13:35

STB’s tempest in transparency

Pity economic regulators. The more they seek the middle-of-the-road, the greater risk both sides assail them. Economist Sidney L. Miller wrote, “It seems clear that our railways are regulated well, rather than wisely.”

Thursday, 13 October 2016 06:42

Wick’s winter of discontent

For newly minted Amtrak President Charles Wickliffe (Wick) Moorman IV, a winter of discontent is nigh.

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