The Corner

The Magic Projectile Theory?

I think these reports about a projectile potentially hitting the train before the crash are interesting. But I just don’t get how this could have caused the crash. Sure, in movies a well-thrown brick breaks the window and disables the engineer, causing him to fall on the gas pedal. The problem is: these trains don’t have gas pedals.  I gather trains have switches which have to be moved into locked positions. But even if they had gas pedals, that’d be an unbelievably lucky throw (or shot) at a moving train. 

By all means, investigate this projectile thing. But it would be great if some of these media outlets could also explain how a “projectile” could cause the train to accelerate or cause the engineer to accelerate the train. I’ll take my answers off the air. 

Jonah Goldberg — Jonah Goldberg holds the Asness Chair in Applied Liberty at the American Enterprise Institute and is a senior editor of National Review. His new book, The Suicide of The West, is on sale now.

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