Joe Marie, the executive director the Phoenix light rail project, provided the following answer to a question from an Arizona Republic reporter.  

Q: You’ve been in transit your whole life. What draws
you? Were you one of those kids with a train set?

A: “No, I fell into transit. At age 22, I’d never been
on an airplane. I got a flight to Brussels for $99 on
People Express. I spent the next few months loafing
around Europe. I took trains all over the place. I
happened to be in Munich (Germany) when I ran out of
money. I called my mom, and she said I got a call from
(Boston’s transit district). I started as a $7-an-hour

His response is quite informative. Instead of
becoming infatuated with government trains in Europe, he should have
wondered how a private airline could deliver him to Europe for $99.  If
that small economic miracle had caught his fancy, the taxpayers and commuters
in Phoenix would be better off today.