Mr. Harris makes a good point, too, one that I thought about before writing what I did. There are many differences between the PC and other RR's of the era, but those points were not even alluded to in the comments on my first posting. The comments were essentially that the federal governments policy towards and regulation of the railroads were the primary factor in the collapse of the PC and other NE railroads. Economic depression, particularly in the NE, labor giveaways by Saunders to get the unions to withdraw it's objections to the merger, decrepit physical plant, mismanagement (there, I said it again) and even the weather all played a part but were essentially ignored. (Which reminds me of my favorite saying: "All issues are complex.")
I'm not saying that Saunders, Perlman and Bevans were the only cause of the bankruptcy; surely there is enough blame to go around to many different factors. Yes, the federal governments policies towards the railroad industry at the time were less than accommodating, but is that such a surprise roughly ten years (in 1968) since the Interstate Highway Act was enacted? The federal government, with a little help from their friends in the auto, oil, rubber and construction industries, decided that highways were the future of transportation in this country. This policy hasn't really changed; just witness the current governmental hostility to Amtrak.