As part of the economic agenda that comprised President Barack Obama’s major first-term priorities, nationwide infrastructural developments headed the shopping list. His successful 2008 election campaign was replete with promises of “shovel-ready” jobs that would not only bring America’s badly neglected infrastructural system up to snuff, but put tens of thousands of newly unemployed construction workers on the job.
For those who may have forgotten, the so-called $800 billion (now estimated at well over $1 trillion dollars) stimulus was passed by a Democrat-dominated House and Senate with the understanding that such a New Deal type “back-to-work” legislation would reverse the then ongoing hemorrhaging of 800,000 jobs a month. We have since learned that some of this trillion dollar addition to the U.S. $16 trillion debt was diverted into increasingly bankrupted renewable energy producers, funded by U.S. Government loans.
Intensive analysis of the original stimulus funds spent showed that, little if any, of these outlays were directed into any aspects of infrastructure. Instead, the first two years of the President’s legislative, as well as executive dominion was spent praising and bulling through “Affordable Healthcare.” This multi-trillion dollar, long-term program has already been rejected by much of the medical community, most of the American electorate, and barely ducked a Supreme Court rejection.
The American nation has never been more ready for a reappraisal of its total infrastructure. This is desperately needed in the area of power generation, and national energy repositioning. Both have been neglected for decades. In fact, such an approach was last attended to during the Eisenhower years (1953-1961) when our current Atlantic to Pacific national highway system was built. And that was militarily inspired to give our Defense system maximum mobility at the height of the then Cold War confrontation.
Whoever occupies the White House after January 20, 2013 will serve the American nation well, if he launches a massive infrastructure initiative in both power generation and pipeline rebalancing to give these two huge areas of current disarray a great leap forward in production as well as employment.
Part of this program of power expansion should also include a massive repair of bridges, dams, and railroad tracks, which desperately require urgent attention. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.
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