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09/09/2010

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Matt K

I'm confused about the math on this one... if all of that $50 billion dollars was just put towards roads (ignoring rail, runways and upgrading air traffic systems), that would be $333K per mile. I did a quick google search and could only find one road project that comes in even close to that number - most are at least $1 million a mile for rebuilding/widening/etc. So which roads are these that are being rebuilt that cheaply?

"wisdom and long term thinking, neither of which exists in American politics" -
I would argue existing in America period, which is weird given how much as a nation we've changed in 200 years why anyone would think that we'll just stop changing now and everything will stay as it is forever...

Tony

And then he comes out with making tax breaks for the rich permanent, at a cost of $200 billion dollars over two years. Where, on earth, does Obama think his government is going to find another $200 billion, never mind $50 billion for this crazy scheme.

I was amazed that he talked in the usual American way of BIG IS GOOD, so he proclaimed the idea of rebuilding enough roads to stretch three times round the world. And then added a measly 4,000 miles of rail track, barely enough to have one line stretching from coast to coast.

jcg1969

One of the frustrating things is having a solid sense (because of this blog of course Dave :)) that the ship is sinking, but living among people going on as though things are in a funk and will improve. I myself am lulled into hearing $50B for infrastructure on NPR and thinking "great" and then off to work. But in my heart and contemplative mind I know we are sunk... in my field I see obscene obesity, broken children, jobless and hopeless adults, pathetic self-esteem...I don't need the Big Picture to see it. But we need to have a sense that others know too: We are croaking.

Jimmy

50 billion dollars could build hemp processing plants across the country to create jobs, food, fuel and rejuvenate the united states. People could even do this themselves if they wanted to, if they get the appropriate licence. It seems to the observer that america simply is not coherent enough to organise a response to its problems, which are primarily energy related.

Bring back hemp and america can rejuvenate. the toys arent needed, just cheap, renewable transport fuel for society to circulate.

Anon

It is incredible that americans would pour yet more of its faux-wealth into, get ready for it, roads and airports. With only lip-service paid to rail\mass transit. In a way, it was almost a forgone conclusion that roads would be at the top of the list. America utterly destroyed its cities and towns decades ago at the behest of corrupt oil and auto cartels. At this this point, your cities are mostly useless now for any sort of train\mass-transit solutions. Let the roads and airports keep crumbling away,in the long run, youll come out better for it. You cant afford them and at this point, they cost you far more in wasted energy, pollution, lost productivty, than they will ever return.

Ed Breguet

Ludicrous. I barely finish expatriating out of the US and this is what I see being done with fifty billion. Good thing I gave up on that place. The sad part about it is that it does need better roads along with the railroads and airports as well. Heck, that country needs everything. It is the absolute worst infrastructure I have seen in any western industrialized country. But I cannot place full blame on gvt. It is the people as well. So long as people keep paying Loire Valley chateau prices for small apts in San Diego and not care about the crumbling city surrounding the same apt, this will keep going on. It's a me me socitey where the full extent of a citizen's concerns ends at the walls of his gated community. American government is just a reflection of this. I have never lived in any place in America that isn't a vacation resort/retirement community. Palm Beach, Miami, Scottsdale, San Diego, etc... And in all those places there was always that other side of town not shown on the brochures. And seldom did I ever see anybody saying one thing about the crumbling or non-existent infrastructure in those places. And these were the nicest places. Americans still do not care. We in here do. But most don't. And they still sit there waving the flag in stupid pride. The funny thing is that in some of the best run places in the world with the lowest unemployment rates right now, one has to struggle to see one flag.

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