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Pass the Stimulus with infrastructure, not tax cuts

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posted on Jan, 30 2009 @ 02:04 PM
This country's electrical grid is falling apart. We have thousands of people who may not get their power back until mid-February. We have bridges that are falling apart, and congestion is hitting an all time high on the roads and rails.
This country needs new water and sewage treatment plants, and upgrades on older ones. The coal fired power plants need to be fitted with pollution controls, and new technologies should be used to power this country.
Mass transit has a backlog of projects to ease traffic in the major cities, and many rail lines need a third and some may need a fourth track for freight and passenger service to run smoothly.

All the above projects create jobs, and they also create orders for materials needed. New buses are ordered from companies that will hire the workers needed. The new power grid can be put underground, which would help in winter when ice storms hit. People will be needed to dig the holes and put in the new pipes. Planners and civil engineers will be needed for the planning, logistics and operations.

It is time to take out many of the tax cuts and put the money in this country's ancient infrastructure. It is over one hundred years old in some cases, and much was built before the 1950s. Even the Republicans complained there was not enough infrastructure spending in the stimulus bill. I understand the need for consensus building, but the country is in bad shape.

I see many viaducts in the city of Chicago which are leaking and have the original steel framing exposed as the concrete erodes. Many of the draw bridges are rusted, and the gears do get stuck. Many older parts of those bridges need to be replaced with newer and better materials now available. The bridges were built in the early 1900s, and it does show. I know of schools that need new roofs and heating systems. The list goes on and on.

I am pleading with both Democrats and Republicans to make infrastructure a core part of the stimulus plan. This is not a partisan thing, but something the whole country will benefit from.

posted on Feb, 8 2009 @ 12:34 PM
It looks like the "stimulus" package will be 42% tax cuts, and 58% spending on health care. The actual amount going to infrastructure is much smaller than the original estimate. The interesting thing is both Republicans and Democrats are stating we need more infrastructure spending to fix our aging country (and provide needed jobs). They still have to work on the bill so it and the House version can go to the President, so lets hope the bickering stops, and the infrastructure part is strengthened.

It is looking like unemployment is going to be in the double digits by the end of the year.

posted on Feb, 8 2009 @ 12:48 PM
reply to post by kidflash2008

The stimulus bill needs to have tax cuts. It is imperative. Infrastructure projects do create jobs, hence helping the economy.

Health care? That is a project that can wait. That doesn't stimulate the economy in my mind.

Tax cuts give the people more of their money to spend, hence helping boost the economy.

Infrastructure projects create jobs hence helping boost the economy on many levels along with improving our country.

posted on Feb, 9 2009 @ 12:50 PM
reply to post by skeptic1

I don't exactly know what types of healthcare spending there is. I wish they would clarify it, but I agree with you that we need infrastructure.

Tax cuts do not benefit the economy as much as infrastructure. Tax cuts have been the Republican response every time, and they haven't worked. Ronald Reagan cut taxes, and then was forced to raise them. (The Republicans never bring that up when speaking of Ronald Reagan.)

I do agree that payroll tax cuts would be a good thing, but don't go overboard. Unfortunately, there are capital gains tax cuts, and there is no capital to be gaining from.

It is estimated that the total costs of infrastructure this country needs is $2 trillion or $2,000,000,000,000, just to maintain and fix what is broken.

I guess I am more upset about the arguing in Congress over what needs to be done, and it is directed at both parties.

posted on Feb, 9 2009 @ 01:01 PM

Originally posted by skeptic1
Health care? That is a project that can wait. That doesn't stimulate the economy in my mind.

Agreed on the infrastructure front... I'm real disappointed in that, it is such a long term benefit to have a country not physically falling apart around our ears.

I'm not sure what to think on the healthcare issue... on one hand, it is working, sort of, so seems like it could be put off.

But the cost involved in healthcare is totally out of hand, and I can see an argument to be made that this cost is having a negative impact on the general US economy... healthcare costs can result in small businesses not expanding, because it costs so much to cover employees, and also can result in lost productivity, because people can't afford to get health care when they need it, leaving it to emergency room use, which is even more expensive than 'normal' healthcare.

So I'm not sure it can wait, if we are talking long-term health of the economy. Something needs to be done to improve general health, and lower the cost of care.

posted on Feb, 9 2009 @ 10:43 PM
Here is some of the actual proposed spending on (there are more if you look at the summary in the link provided below) transportation infrastructure.

These quotes are taken directly from the bill.

As I mentioned in another thread, please read the package for yourselves.
Many groups are trying to twist a spin on the bill with claims of "pork".
Read it, and each of us can find our own pork.(link provided below)

I agree with the OP about the need for more toward transportation infrastructure spending. But each of us that read it will have our own ideas about the distribution. Also note that most of these have short sunset clauses.(use it or loose it)

Highways: $27 billion is included for highway investments. The vast majority of this
funding will be distributed as grants using a formula set in current highway authorization
law. The vast majority of this funding will be distributed as grants using a formula set in
current highway authorization law. The funding can be used on activities eligible under
Federal-aid Highway Program’s Surface Transportation Program. Eligible activities
could also include rail and port infrastructure activities at the discretion of the states. The
grants will be provided in two parts:

Mass Transit: The bill includes $8.4 billion for investments in public transportation.

Competitive Grants for Transportation: The bill includes $5.5 billion for competitive
grants to state and local governments for transportation investments. These grants will go
to a many different kinds of transportation investments – including highway, transit, rail,
or port infrastructure

The original bill:

Senate H.R.1 736 page pdf

These are the highlights of the proposed amendments to the bill as of last Friday.
Note: this summary is not all-inclusive, These are the highlights. If anyone is intersested, I can post
a link to the final proposed bill, as soon as it gets back from the printer.
Appropriations Provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act
(including Nelson-Collins amendment and other floor amendments as of February 6)
Huffington post link to Feb 6 senate summary of stimulus bill


posted on Feb, 10 2009 @ 03:00 PM
The best healthcare is preventive maintenance, and I could see getting people to eating better diets and doing physical activity. The actual healthcare should be separate from the infrastructure that is needed.
In Chicago, the el line is in need of much work. It was built in the late 1800s, and much of it is original. Many stations are falling apart, and could use upgrades or replacements. The city also needs new buses, and should order electric or hydrogen fuel cell ones.
The commuter train lines need to be expanded, and they need to finish purchasing newer cars to replace the older ones they have now. Also, second and third tracks need to be added to some lines, as both commuter and freight lines are running more trains.
The roads are in terrible shape, and many need to be replaced outright. Bridges and viaducts need work, as water leakage has weakened some of them.

This is in Chicago, and there are other major cities that need as much or more work done. Those projects create jobs, and the people who get the jobs can pay their bills and buy the products they have been putting off. Yes, the jobs are temporary, but they will last for several years as many projects take a while to complete. When they are done with them, other projects will be funded and ready for workers to complete. These projects can keep people on for more than a decade to do the work that needs to be done. Unlike a certain politician, work and jobs are the same.

posted on Feb, 13 2009 @ 01:35 AM
Tax cuts for the middle class and working class and poor have their benefits. These groups will spend their tax cuts on necessities like food, electricity, mortgage payments, car payments, etc. and they will go straight back into the economy quickly, which is what is needed to get the economy moving asap.

Tax cuts for the rich are debatable, as the rich tend to save their money, put it into offshore accounts, put it into long-term investments or gold, or even spend it overseas. Their wealth is thought by Reaganites to "trickle down" to the rest of us; wealth can also "trickle up" from the bottom throughout the economy.

I was not aware that such a large amount of the stimulus was for health care.

It shouldn't be a question of either tax cuts or infrastructure--we need both, and both can get the economy moving again.

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