I do not know you but your facts appear to but pulled from somewhere other than a legitimate source.
http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/Bridge/deficient.cfm). Click on the 2007 html page and then scroll down to the bottom and look over to the 4th column of numbers from the left and you will see a number. I don't see 200K as the number but we aren't talking about an order of magnitude difference. What did you base your incorrect number on?
Thanks for that link. Good to see that there are only 152,316 deficient bridges in this country. We should all feel much better now.
From this, we can clearly see that there is no need for this type of work, much less realize that bridge building peaked 50 years ago in the post- WWII era with most bridges having a 50 year life span.
1941 was an interesting year. However if we look at the years immediately preceding we note that the unemployment rate was running around 17% in 1939. This was attributed to a mini recession within the depression caused by the industrial collapse of the late 1930's. After so many years of the nation essentially buying nothing but subsistence items, US industry nearly collapsed. This was scenario was radically altered in 1940-41 when the Axis alliance was formed and US industry began the mad conversion to war production with much of their products being funneled to the UK and France. Note that many thousand US men also enlisted in the foreign armies and began fighting WWII prior to the US actually becoming involved.
There are several things to bear in mind when looking at the New Deal programs. The WPA and CCC were in essence workfare programs. Unlike the dole which was more for women and infants, WPA and CCC were developed to provide the men with a way to earn subsistence without the "welfare" tag that was shameful to most in that era. It is also noted that in that era very few women worked or had the skills thought necessary for such infrastructure (construction) work. Further many of the CCC projects were essentially labor camps where the workers lived in tent cities and worked on some massive construction projects. There were many camps within the national park systems where the crews built the lodges, trials, and many of the roads. There is a stretch of California Hiway 1 that runs from Carmel south to Big Sur and San Luis Obispo. Much of this route was built during this time. If you ever travel this road, pay attention to all the dates on the bridges. In my city, the programs built water storage towers, high schools, fire stations, beautified some of the city parks with walkways and retaining walls, murals, etc.
Also of note is that not all unemployed chose to join the New Deal programs. The 1930's was the time of probably the largest mass migration of people within the US since the 1850s. It was nearly equivalent to the gold rush in terms of the migration of people from the east and central states to the west. Many came to homestead some of the vast tracts of land made available. Others came in search of work. Many metal workers and machinists came to Sacramento to work with the railroads who had massive shops in the area, my grandparents among them.
I guess a lot depends on how you look at it and what you visualize the stimulus' purpose to be. If these projects are to put people to work then no this is not a good deal as it favors just those unionized workers, actually a minority of the total workforce in the US. It also short changes the rest of the populace who are supporting this workforce at inflated wages by greatly limiting the amount of infrastructure projects that can be undertaken. If you reduce the wages paid from prevailing rate to customary rates, you will double the amount of the workforce. Each earning a livable wage and double the amount of projects that can be undertaken. If you reduce the level to subsistence levels (minimum wages) then you can triple or quadruple the amount of the workforce and the amount of projects undertaken. Of course if you reduce the salary levels to New Deal levels the amount of work that could be undertaken would be staggering.
Remember that at the start of the depression there was no such thing as unemployment insurance and welfare was virtually nonexistent. If you lump the current funds for these programs with that of the stimulus package, and used the WPA and CCC as your models but with minimum wage, we would not have any problems with our infrastructure as we would have the money and manpower to fix and build as needed. Of course we would again run the risk of an industrial collapse as at New Deal wages, there would not be enough income to support much in the way of luxury buying. But our citizenry would probably be healthier, one of the side benefits of the CCC programs. In short, the only similarity of the New Deal programs of the 1930 and the stimulus package of today is the federal red ink associated with these programs.
The real question though is how does the stimulus program correct the problems that caused this economic crisis in the first place? How do you rectify the lost retirement dollars of all those whose portfolios were cut in half? How do you reinflate the housing prices such that the equity that was lost during the collapse is replaced? How do you restore a living income to those who were living off the interest of their savings only to see interest rates cut by 60%? How do you remedy the situation where people who have no business owning a $500K house were sold a bill of goods and allowed to buy them only to find out that now the house is worth $250K and their mortgage is $450K. Most of the jobs funded through the stimulus plan are of relatively short duration. How and what do you propose we do in 2-3 years when this money runs out? How long can the US keep printing money until it becomes worthless? With this new stimulus package were are now well over $1.5T invested. That is over $5K per person in the US. Or probablt close to $15K for each taxpayer.
The basic problem is that most of populace of the US has been living beyound their means for the last decade. This has ramped up expectations from industry through retail as to what the US workforce can consume. How do you satisfy these expectations when the population realizes it can't afford to continue these practices? Does the average family really need and can it support 3.2 cars? Can we continue to support all the telecommunications devices? Can we continue being such a throwaway society? And what happens to industry and retail when we cut back?
My opinion is that we are in for a very rocky decade with or without the stimulus package, and that the stimulus package may actually make things worse as it does not solve the actual problems, but exacerbates them by throwing more unearned money at it.
I did not throw out a number that was 25% off a number that is easliy obtained...actually I didnt state a number at all... "Structurally-deficient bridges are not necessarily unsafe" per the study... stick to facts and save the drama for you mamma.
You whining crying libs crack me up...
At least now we know where SOME of the infrastructure money is going. I can't WAIT for the gridlock that is going to occur when we try to fix ALL of those "structurally deficient bridges" at the same time...and, of course, they're ALL in the same shape as the I-35 bridge in MSP, aren't they.....
Now....where are the REST of those billions going? Even the creator of the plan doesn't know....but don't we all feel better that our Dem-controlled Congress has mortgaged our future beyond anyone's imagination and has no real PLAN on how to spend all that money?
All this from a guy who couldn't even do his own taxes correctly....can I see a show of hands from ANYONE who is surprised by this morass?
CHANGE, baby....it's all about the CHANGE....and POCKET CHANGE is all we're gonna have left when the gooberment's spending is done.....God help us all...
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