That's where we disagree. I don't think it should be funded privately (not the majority of it). I think private companies should help build it, but we should fund it since we're benefiting from it. If we left it up to private companies to build something that massive (NYC to LA is a long ways) it would never get done. Especially if we had another economic collapse like we did in 2008 and 2009 in the middle of the construction. There is no way the Hoover Dam could have been completed during the Great Depression if it were funded privately. We could have a bunch of half built tubes all over the place just sitting there for years transporting nothing. Just like we had a bunch of construction projects left unfinished after the Great Recession. No, this would have to be built with tax dollars like the interstate highway system was.
If it was a private company building a skyscraper or something in a single area, okay. But a project that goes from New York to Los Angeles (with stops in between), no way. That reminds me of those stories I hear about private companies going to the moon and building communities there. No way they could do that on there own.
Yeah the airlines are privately funded, and everybody loves the service we get from the airlines. I thank God the airlines don't employ the air traffic controllers. If we had high speed rail (or tubes), that would take some of the pressure off the airlines. There wouldn't be so much congestion and overbooked flights. There pilots and other staff wouldn't be so over worked. Yes they'd lose some customers, but the customers the do have they'd be able to provide better service to.