posted on Jun, 14 2017 @ 08:42 AM
Last week was Trump's "Infrastructure Week," where the news cycle was to be dominated by his announcing his policies intended to repair America's
crumbling infrastructure. Only two were articulated clearly, and neither is particularly bad.
The first is a privatization of the air traffic control industry. The FAA would be replaced by a public-private partnership along the lines of the
Federal Reserve Bank. Their board of directors would be appointed or approved by the Federal government, but they would be empowered to float bonds to
raise money and charge airlines for services. This is similar to the situation in Canada and Europe. There is nothing inherently wrong with the
concept, and it will transfer the financial burden from taxpayers to the users of the services, the airlines, who will then pass the costs on to
I am all in favor of using geo-location satellites and upgraded computers in air traffic control, provided they retain ground based systems as back
up. Satellite navigation is particularly susceptible to interference from solar flares, CMEs, and anti-satellite weapons.
This proposal will certainly be fought by unions, but is likely to be authorized by Congress.
The second involves streamlining government paperwork to enable more rapid authorization. This one will certainly appeal to Trump's genuine
conservative supporters, but I, personally, see a red flag. Whereas I agree that the bureaucracy is too cumbersome, my fear is that this will be an
excuse to roll back necessary environmental reviews.
Once Trump does get back on track, there are two policies we should be on the lookout for. Trump may try to privatize existing infrastructure,
allowing private corporations to turn roads and bridges built with taxpayer money into toll roads and bridges. This would not necessarily ensure that
they will be maintained any better than they are now. Another policy that may be waiting in the wings involves more liberal use of "eminent domain"
by the Federal government. Eminent domain has a long history of being abused by real estate sharks like Trump. Land is acquired by the government for
some "critical infrastructure" that will benefit the public. The land is then sold to a developer who uses it for private gain.
Does anyone have more concrete information about Trump's infrastructure plans? How do you feel about them?