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Infrastructure Bill

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1 Infrastructure Bill on 2/8/2018, 10:08 pm

So .... I been telling my buddy back home in Mississippi for years now how impressed I was when I saw how good the roads are compared to wherever it was I was living at the time.  He always scoffed ... he thinks Mississippi has some of the worst roads in the country.  Far from it ... they are number 11 out of the 50 States  (Florida is 35.)     https://reason.org/policy_study/23rd-annual-highway-report/

So now, probably after they get the budget & immigration deals worked out, they'll be taking up the Infrastructure Bill.   I have little doubt there will be some kind of infrastructure bill ... and I am not necessarily opposed to it, if done right and spent on basic needs highways, bridges, sewer, pipelines, etc.  But not if it's gonna be spent on flashy bullet trains and overpriced urban public transportation projects.   Interestingly, according the rankings in the link above .... most of the "Trump" States are more rural and so happens are also the ones with the best roads.   According to this article (http://reason.com/blog/2018/02/08/rural-america-needs-road-infrastructure), 25 billion (25% of the proposed 200 billion) will go to rural State Governors with no strings attached to how they use it.  

While much of Donald Trump's forthcoming infrastructure proposal is said to focus on encouraging local, state, and private investment, a big portion of it will still be traditional federal pork. That includes a likely $50 billion for rural infrastructure projects.

....

Despite this, Trump's infrastructure proposal looks likely to include a healthy slab of pork for rural states. According to a leaked "funding principles" document from January, 25 percent of the $200 billion federal appropriations component of the infrastructure plan will be awarded to rural governors with essentially no strings attached.

That has much more to do with politics than policy. As Feigenbaum says, "It's pretty obvious the rural funding is designed to get the bill through the Senate. It's not merit based."


Well, ain't that sweet!  silent

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2 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/8/2018, 10:27 pm

North Escambia County is having record bridge failures. The old wood piling bridges over streams have just worn out. Many people are facing half hour detours. The reason the old confederacy has better roads is because the freeze cycle does not tear the same up as it does northern roads, but rural bridges in America is at a crisis. This regional blue vs red state is nothing new. How do you think almost all our military bases are in the old confederacy. At this point raising the defense budget by 65 billion could build 65,000 rural bridges and I do not care where we build them as long as they create American private sector jobs and we finally get the military teat suckers off our national budget.

Bridges over KP duty at a politically sited military base.

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3 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/9/2018, 1:06 pm


Can't wait for Drumpf and the GOP to roll out the infrastructure plan. We'll have a nation of Bo's bridges.

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4 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/10/2018, 9:29 am

Interesting article from Reason on infrastructure.  

Just like the issue of border infrastructure .... it's not like we haven't been doing anything at all on that these past 20 years.  

Makes ya wonder .... how much of these infrastructure/border/etc issues being presented to us by pols & the news are actually legit & how much of it is hyped-up in order to funnel Federal tax monies to various lobbied business interests? What with all the talk about "fake news' nowadays, you'd think we'd be talking as well about "propaganda?"


Our Infrastructure Is Not 'Crumbling.' Repeat: Our Infrastructure Is Not 'Crumbling'

The number of structurally deficient bridges, never high to begin with, has been dropping over the past 30 years
.
David Harsanyi|Feb. 9, 2018 1:15 pm

One of the great myths of American politics, no matter who is president and no matter who runs Congress, is that our infrastructure is "crumbling." Former President Barack Obama repeatedly warned us about our "crumbling infrastructure." President Donald Trump now tells us that our infrastructure is "crumbling." The next president is going to hatch a giant plan to fix our crumbling infrastructure as well, because most voters want to believe infrastructure is crumbling.

The infrastructure is not crumbling. Ask someone about infrastructure and his thoughts will probably wander to the worst pothole-infested road he traverses rather than the hundreds of roads he drives on that are perfectly safe and smooth. That's human nature.

So "crumbling infrastructure" peddlers play on this concern by habitually agonizing over things like the impending outbreak of tragic bridge collapses that will kill thousands. They bring up tragedies like the 2007 disaster with the Interstate 35 bridge over the Mississippi River in downtown Minneapolis even though, according to federal investigators, the collapse was due to a design flaw rather than decaying infrastructure. Many outlets and politicians simply ignore the inconvenient fact that the rare fatality involving infrastructure typically has nothing to do with "crumbling" and everything to do with natural elements or human error.

In reality, the number of structurally deficient bridges, never high to begin with, has been dropping over the past 30 years despite all the hand-wringing. The overall number has fallen from over 22 percent in 1992 to under 10 percent in 2016. According to a Reuters analysis of those bridges, only 4 percent of those that carry significant traffic need repairs. Of the nation's 1,200 busiest bridges, the number of those structurally deficient falls to under 2 percent—or fewer than 20 bridges in the entire country. And none of those bridges need repair to save them from collapse.

That has never stopped politicians from fearmongering, however. "Our roads and bridges are falling apart; our airports are in Third World condition," Trump claimed during his 2016 campaign. Yet as the Heritage Foundation's Michael Sargent points out, the percentage of airport runways deemed as poor has fallen from 4 percent in 2004 to 2 percent in 2016. And for the past 30 years, the number of "acceptable" or above roads has remained relatively consistent at approximately 85 percent.

Perhaps because they're constantly being told that America's roads are on the verge of disintegrating into dust, some voters aren't aware that federal, state and local governments spent $416 billion on transportation and water infrastructure in 2014—around the same 2.4 percent of gross domestic product they've been spending for decades. About $165 billion of that $416 billion, incidentally, was spent on highways. (This doesn't count the bipartisan Fixing America's Surface Transportation Act of 2015, which added another $305 billion over five years.)

It's also worth remembering that when liberals talk about infrastructure, they don't necessarily mean roads or bridges or airports or water-processing plants. They mean expensive social engineering projects and Keynesian job-creation schemes. In 2017, Senate Democrats unveiled their own $1 trillion infrastructure plan, claiming the additional spending would create 15 million jobs over 10 years. Despite years of hearing otherwise, there is still no evidence that infrastructure bills create self-sustaining jobs—or any jobs, for that matter.

According to a 2010 Associated Press analysis, the first 10 months of Obama's economic stimulus plan showed virtually no effect on local unemployment rates, which rose and fell regardless of money spent on infrastructure projects. It barely even helped construction jobs. What it did do was fund cronyistic ventures and debt-padding waste.

Around $90 billion of Obama's infrastructure-heavy "stimulus" plan went to green energy companies (many of which are now in bankruptcy) rather than repairing bridges. Another $1.3 billion went to subsidize Amtrak rather than repairing the roads you actually drive on. Another $8 billion went to various other rail projects (with a priority on high-speed rail) rather than highways or byways or your local street.

Now, though one expects Trump's $1 trillion infrastructure bill to focus more on traditional projects, the case for the new spending is predicated on the same chilling and misleading rhetoric we've been hearing for years. Although still nebulous, the White House's plan apparently features some attempt to reduce the regulatory burden that the private sector must wade through before gaining approval for building permits. This is a positive step considering the vast majority of infrastructure is still built by the private sector. This should be a goal of the administration with or without the massive infrastructure bill.

How we fund the infrastructure, and who builds these projects, is certainly a debate worth having. But it's a debate worth having without ever using the word "crumbling."
http://reason.com/archives/2018/02/09/our-infrastructure-is-not-crumbling-repe/print

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5 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/12/2018, 2:16 pm

EmeraldGhost wrote:Interesting article from Reason on infrastructure.  

Just like the issue of border infrastructure .... it's not like we haven't been doing anything at all on that these past 20 years.  

Makes ya wonder .... how much of these infrastructure/border/etc issues being presented to us by pols & the news are actually legit & how much of it is hyped-up in order to funnel Federal tax monies to various lobbied business interests?   What with all the talk about "fake news' nowadays, you'd think we'd be talking as well about "propaganda?"


Our Infrastructure Is Not 'Crumbling.' Repeat: Our Infrastructure Is Not 'Crumbling'

The number of structurally deficient bridges, never high to begin with, has been dropping over the past 30 years
.
David Harsanyi|Feb. 9, 2018 1:15 pm

One of the great myths of American politics, no matter who is president and no matter who runs Congress, is that our infrastructure is "crumbling." Former President Barack Obama repeatedly warned us about our "crumbling infrastructure." President Donald Trump now tells us that our infrastructure is "crumbling." The next president is going to hatch a giant plan to fix our crumbling infrastructure as well, because most voters want to believe infrastructure is crumbling.

The infrastructure is not crumbling. Ask someone about infrastructure and his thoughts will probably wander to the worst pothole-infested road he traverses rather than the hundreds of roads he drives on that are perfectly safe and smooth. That's human nature.

So "crumbling infrastructure" peddlers play on this concern by habitually agonizing over things like the impending outbreak of tragic bridge collapses that will kill thousands. They bring up tragedies like the 2007 disaster with the Interstate 35 bridge over the Mississippi River in downtown Minneapolis even though, according to federal investigators, the collapse was due to a design flaw rather than decaying infrastructure. Many outlets and politicians simply ignore the inconvenient fact that the rare fatality involving infrastructure typically has nothing to do with "crumbling" and everything to do with natural elements or human error.

In reality, the number of structurally deficient bridges, never high to begin with, has been dropping over the past 30 years despite all the hand-wringing. The overall number has fallen from over 22 percent in 1992 to under 10 percent in 2016. According to a Reuters analysis of those bridges, only 4 percent of those that carry significant traffic need repairs. Of the nation's 1,200 busiest bridges, the number of those structurally deficient falls to under 2 percent—or fewer than 20 bridges in the entire country. And none of those bridges need repair to save them from collapse.

That has never stopped politicians from fearmongering, however. "Our roads and bridges are falling apart; our airports are in Third World condition," Trump claimed during his 2016 campaign. Yet as the Heritage Foundation's Michael Sargent points out, the percentage of airport runways deemed as poor has fallen from 4 percent in 2004 to 2 percent in 2016. And for the past 30 years, the number of "acceptable" or above roads has remained relatively consistent at approximately 85 percent.

Perhaps because they're constantly being told that America's roads are on the verge of disintegrating into dust, some voters aren't aware that federal, state and local governments spent $416 billion on transportation and water infrastructure in 2014—around the same 2.4 percent of gross domestic product they've been spending for decades. About $165 billion of that $416 billion, incidentally, was spent on highways. (This doesn't count the bipartisan Fixing America's Surface Transportation Act of 2015, which added another $305 billion over five years.)

It's also worth remembering that when liberals talk about infrastructure, they don't necessarily mean roads or bridges or airports or water-processing plants. They mean expensive social engineering projects and Keynesian job-creation schemes. In 2017, Senate Democrats unveiled their own $1 trillion infrastructure plan, claiming the additional spending would create 15 million jobs over 10 years. Despite years of hearing otherwise, there is still no evidence that infrastructure bills create self-sustaining jobs—or any jobs, for that matter.

According to a 2010 Associated Press analysis, the first 10 months of Obama's economic stimulus plan showed virtually no effect on local unemployment rates, which rose and fell regardless of money spent on infrastructure projects. It barely even helped construction jobs. What it did do was fund cronyistic ventures and debt-padding waste.

Around $90 billion of Obama's infrastructure-heavy "stimulus" plan went to green energy companies (many of which are now in bankruptcy) rather than repairing bridges. Another $1.3 billion went to subsidize Amtrak rather than repairing the roads you actually drive on. Another $8 billion went to various other rail projects (with a priority on high-speed rail) rather than highways or byways or your local street.

Now, though one expects Trump's $1 trillion infrastructure bill to focus more on traditional projects, the case for the new spending is predicated on the same chilling and misleading rhetoric we've been hearing for years. Although still nebulous, the White House's plan apparently features some attempt to reduce the regulatory burden that the private sector must wade through before gaining approval for building permits. This is a positive step considering the vast majority of infrastructure is still built by the private sector. This should be a goal of the administration with or without the massive infrastructure bill.

How we fund the infrastructure, and who builds these projects, is certainly a debate worth having. But it's a debate worth having without ever using the word "crumbling."
http://reason.com/archives/2018/02/09/our-infrastructure-is-not-crumbling-repe/print

This is absolute BULLSHIT by a known right-wing spinmeister. The $90 billion claim was pushed by Romney in 2012. This "author" has seized upon distortions and has provided nothing to back up his assertions. I'm so tired of these lying aholes. How do they stand themselves?

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6 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/12/2018, 2:59 pm

Floridatexan wrote:
This is absolute BULLSHIT by a known right-wing spinmeister.  The $90 billion claim was pushed by Romney in 2012.  This "author" has seized upon distortions and has provided nothing to back up his assertions.  I'm so tired of these lying aholes.  How do they stand themselves?

You haven't provided any evidence either. Why do you say it's complete bullshit?

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7 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/12/2018, 3:07 pm

Floridatexan wrote:This is absolute BULLSHIT by a known right-wing spinmeister.  The $90 billion claim was pushed by Romney in 2012.  This "author" has seized upon distortions and has provided nothing to back up his assertions.  I'm so tired of these lying aholes.  How do they stand themselves?

You're pretty defensive about the redistribution of other people's money. Very useful.

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8 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/12/2018, 3:54 pm

Deus X wrote:
Floridatexan wrote:
This is absolute BULLSHIT by a known right-wing spinmeister.  The $90 billion claim was pushed by Romney in 2012.  This "author" has seized upon distortions and has provided nothing to back up his assertions.  I'm so tired of these lying aholes.  How do they stand themselves?

You haven't provided any evidence either. Why do you say it's complete bullshit?

https://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Reason_Foundation

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9 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/12/2018, 4:15 pm

http://www.populartechnology.net/2011/10/truth-about-sourcewatch.html

SourceWatch is a propaganda site funded by an extreme left-wing, anti-capitalist and anti-corporate organization, the Center for Media and Democracy. Just like the untrustworthy Wikipedia the content can be written and edited by ordinary web users. Users who all conveniently share an extreme left-wing bias. SourceWatch is frequently cited by those seeking to smear individuals and organizations who do not share their extreme left-wing bias since they cannot find any legitimate criticisms from respected news sources.

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10 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/12/2018, 4:35 pm

Floridatexan wrote:
Deus X wrote:
Floridatexan wrote:
This is absolute BULLSHIT by a known right-wing spinmeister.  The $90 billion claim was pushed by Romney in 2012.  This "author" has seized upon distortions and has provided nothing to back up his assertions.  I'm so tired of these lying aholes.  How do they stand themselves?

You haven't provided any evidence either. Why do you say it's complete bullshit?

https://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Reason_Foundation


What I meant was the original assertion that the infrastructure is NOT crumbling. Just because Harsanyi is a rightwinger doesn't necessarily mean he's everything he says is "absolute BULLSHIT".

Maybe he's right about some of this. I haven't seen any evidence either way.

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11 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/12/2018, 5:20 pm

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12 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/12/2018, 7:40 pm

Trump the Con-Artist Is at It Again
By Robert Reich, Robert Reich's Facebook Page

12 February 18



Trump the con-artist is at it again – calling for a $1.5 trillion boost in infrastructure spending, but proposing just $200 billion in federal funding, and not saying where any of the money will come from.

Now that Trump and the Republicans have enacted a huge tax cut for corporations and the rich, there’s no money left.

Trump won’t admit this, but he plans to get money for his big infrastructure plan from (1) higher state and local taxes on average working people and the poor, (2) higher gas taxes paid mostly by average working people and the poor, (3) tolls on highways and bridges also paid by average working people and the poor, but which will go into the pockets of private investors, and (4) cuts in public services, that will hurt average working people and the poor.

What do you think?

http://readersupportednews.org/opinion2/277-75/48421-focus-trump-the-con-artist-is-at-it-again

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13 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/12/2018, 8:13 pm

RSN is just another Soros sprout... extreme leftist bias.

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14 Re: Infrastructure Bill on 2/12/2018, 9:51 pm

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