Skip to comments.Obama Banking on Large-Scale Public Works Project
Posted on 12/06/2008 3:11:56 PM PST by EagleUSA
CHICAGO President-elect Barack Obama said Saturday he wants to revive the economy through a job-creating public works plan on a scale unseen since the building program of the interstate highway system in the 1950s.
He offered no price estimate for the grand plan, how the money might be divided or the effect on the country's financial health at a time of burgeoning deficits.
The ideas were outlined in the weekly radio address the day after the government reported that employers cut 533,000 jobs in November, the most in 34 years. They are part of a vision for a massive economy recovery plan Obama wants Congress to pass and have waiting on his desk when he takes office Jan. 20.
The president-elect's address never once used the word "spend," relying instead on "invest" or "investments," and pledging wise stewardship of taxpayer money in upgrading roads and schools, and making public buildings more energy-efficient.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
Sounds better than bailing out Wall Street fat cat bankers, if you ask me.
It’s been said that the New Deal actually exacerbated the Great Depression.
This is the crap you get when the most liberal senator in the country gets elected as president. Thanks a lot, America.
I guess I can start telling my three year old his future involves a gubmint pick ax.......
There is only so much infrastructure that we can build. Its not like Rebuilding existing interstates and highways. Sure there is some work that needs to be done but it isn’t going to grow the millions of jobs he wants. It cannot be relied on to substantially grow the economy....
To me it looks like there is going to be huge waste. Money to do and redo and do over existing highways when nothing is wrong with many of them.
Plus imagine the traffic nightmare during the Construction...
BIG DIG on a NATIONWIDE level....
This is just plain STUPID.
The problem is that it is 2008 and his solution includes the word work. His people don’t work.
The whole reason for unions is to not work. Hiways will never be built by people who don’t show up.
How long does it take to build a road or bridge? The planning/design/review stages take YEARS to complete.
How is this going to create large numbers of jobs?
Where do I apply,want some government cheese!
So what? Everyone who is unemployed right now can get a job building a road?
Think about it.
Wow more dum dum make work projects..
But after the Minnesota bridge collapse, which was blamed by liberals on Bush, reports were that thousands of bridges in this country needed repair. There are real infrastrucuture needs out there, but probably not enough for a massive WPA style program.
Speaking of which, where the heck is Obama going to get the money to pay for this program? Plus he wants to do healthcare, he wants to invest $150 billion in green energy, etc., but there’s no money for anything that he wants to do. Where will it come from?
The Democrat legions are already drooling over this huge pile of potential graft.
This stuff feeds the demand side. Much worse.
Our school district would appreciate the extra $1000 they would get from DC so they can put solar cells on one of the grammar school roofs. It’s dark most of the school year, but that wouldn’t deter Mr Infrastrucure.
Sure if only “his” people who don’t want to work and are on government dole are hired it will flop. For this to succeed there has to be fair and open bidding and well defined benchmarks for project completions.
Bush = Hoover
Barack = FDR
2009 = 1933.
And the Democrats are the "party of change."
It did not really work for FDR, and it won’t work for obama.
Besides, there is the requirement that the domestic Department of Peace & Love, the internal army that we have heard to be promised at least as much money spent upon as the entire military, has to be funded and staffed. The real danger is going to be from the “National Security Defense Force”, the “civilian” army that obama is going to unleash upon the American public, as kind of a “national police force”, and the REAL threat whom we shall have to be defending against.
It will look a lot like the regime of François Duvalier, who was the notorious ruler of Haiti throughout the 1960s. Duvalier was a physician (the source of his nickname, “Papa Doc”) who worked in the Haitian government beginning in the mid-1940s. With the armys support, he was elected to the presidency in 1957. In 1964 he declared himself president for life and indeed, stayed president until his death in 1971, when his son, Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier, succeeded him. Papa Doc was an expert in voodoo who ruled Haiti with brute force and terror, with a ruthless security force, the Tontons Macoutes, acting as real-life bogeymen who routinely executed his opponents.
Obama’s priority is roads and bridges. Our priority is paying the mortgage and putting food on the table. If the GOP knows what’s good for it, it will make this an issue.
yeah because what we really need in the 21st century are more union guys pouring concrete everywhere. /sarc
I would say that is just about right.
Down here in Houston, about a lifetime.
He could reorganize every State Dept. of Vital Statistics to be like Hawaii's!
What about building a few mosques, with one on the Washington Mall, up from the Lincoln Memorial. That should bring a few bucks into the country.
Exactly, but this time, the fascists are in office here, aand not in Germany.
Mark my words.
Jonah Goldberg is right.
Keynesian economics is nothing new for Congress.
Everyone know it doesn’t work, but since it cements political power, it’s popular among Democrats and Republicans alike.
>>Hiways will never be built by people who dont show up.<<
An ex-business partner of mine told me many times the story about how his grandfather hit the jackpot in the 1930’s as a government public works contractor during FDR’s administration. Grandpa’s company “worked” on projects throughout Southern Ohio, Kentucky, Western PA and West Virginia. Grandpa had 5 “ghost” employees for every real employee. Gramps made a killing, much better money than moonshine ever was.
Military, missile defense, border control.
All that surplus powdered milk, cheese, wheat, corn, etc. is GONE! Check it out - they still have a bunch of bales of cotton, some rapeseed oil (oops politically correct is Canola) and that's about it! We don't got no more credit, and we is eatin harvest to harvest.
See, all the more reason for the Ejército Juvenil de Trabajo (Youth Labor Army [EJT])that Castro used to harvest sugar cane and pick pineapples - oh, and to report on their neighbors too.
I wonder what makes Barry think that people will do actual manual labor? You know..the back breaking, hot in the summer, cold in the winter kind of labor. Will there be a “draft” for infrastructure jobs?
I'm also pretty intrigued with the broadband expansion (more digging ditches?) and electronic medical records (data entry?).
Thought we elected a leader, instead got a soup kitchen cook.
Yeah , we need big new bridges to no where for the 5mph wind powered cars ;-)))
All you software engineers, grab your shovel, we are heading back to a Kenyan economy.
The Obama guy came a little short in the brains sector.
More like robbing the bank to pay for a public works program.
Just wait until the environmental groups start the lawsuits to stop them too.
I wonder if Obama is aware that the PWA and WPA were the vehicles used to get such construction giants as Morris Knudsen and Kellogg Brown their start. Kellogg of course went on to become that purveyor of evil, Halliburton. Both companies became vibrant spokes in the so called military industrial complex. I’m sure his haloedness will take precautions to see that the companies that profit from his new old deal will be paragons of pacificsm and greeness.
Hey, hes going to provide career opportunities with this infrastructure thing. The way Ive seen some of these road crews work, many have made a career out of filling a single pothole! Not to mention all of the jobs that would be available providing vertical support to shovels. Those shovels just cant stand there on their own ya know.
The burning question in all of this is how will the Congress structure this “plan”?? If Virginia has $1 Billion worth of supposedly “shovel ready” projects set to go, how will they repay this money if it is in the form of loans??
I do not see the Congress agreeing to just hand out cash to States under any circumstances, and especially not in the amounts that are being suggested. In addition, how do the taxpayers know if these projects are truly viable or not?? Normally these projects seek some sort of voter approval, sometimes at several steps along the way. In some cases you have other elected bodies such as City Councils, who meet, discuss and plan these projects long before any finding is approved.
I fear we are about to circumvent the many necessary project controls that have been developed and put into place over the years to help prevent public money from going to the wrong places. If this goes through, I’m convinced we’ll see fraud on a scale like never before. I can see officials rushing to spend this money as fast as they can so it doesn’t get taken away, and there will be little or no cost control or quality control along the way.
We could easily be looking at billions more in bailouts someday of all these new Federal Projects that DelanObama is proposing to fund...
Wondered about those electronic medical records too. You probably can’t see them to make sure there are no mistakes
Reasons why we would not be able to see them:
1. It is above our pay-grade.
2. Those records are sealed.
3. We lack standing.
4. (add your own)
I fear we are about to circumvent the many necessary project controls that have been developed and put into place over the years to help prevent public money from going to the wrong places. If this goes through, Im convinced well see fraud on a scale like never before. I can see officials rushing to spend this money as fast as they can so it doesnt get taken away, and there will be little or no cost control or quality control along the way.
Without any doubt. The crooks of the Congress, the Pelosi/Ried mob, do not give a damn about what you or I think about anything. It is all about power and control, and be damned with America, its citizens, the MONEY OF THE CITIZENS, or anything else that might resemble responsibility and oversight. Welcome of a Congress of radical liberalism that does not care one iota about the consequences of their actions....they have already proven that, as sure as they will dump billions into the BIG 3 to pay the unions back for their votes. Bank on it.
I strongly suggest everybody go get a copy of Henry Hazlitt’s “Economics in One Lesson” (it can be found online) and read the chapter on public works. It will give you good intellectual ammo to explain to people for the next four years on why this is such an awful idea.
As I see it, there are only a small handful of beneficial things the government does. Building infrastructure is one of them. Now this money probably could be used more effectively by the people who actually earned it, but given the government we soon will have, this would be by far one of the best uses for the money. Otherwise, they might decide to just hand it out like in the last “stimulus”, dole it out as welfare to their presumed constituents or worse yet selectively give it out to hard core leftists like ACORN or LaRaza.
In the short term, a WPA II may be unavoidable, but not for significant wages, but just in exchange for housing and food for them and their families. And much like the original WPA (nickname “We Piddle Around”), the practical application will be for them to repair and rebuild a lot of decaying infrastructure projects around the US (many of whom were originally built by the WPA.)
But because international trade is going to be pretty defunct for some years, the US is going to have to rebuild its heavy industry to provide us with what we need. And this will take a lot of pressure off unemployment.
The biggest employer in any modern economy is not big business, however, it is small business. And getting that back on track is going to be hard.
The fastest industry to get back in operation will be agribusiness, because it has been tightly controlled and managed since the Great Depression. This is a good quick source of national income, and because it is sustainable, expenses will be relatively normal.
A major project that Obama can thank George W. Bush for is easing the requirements for federal eminent domain for railroad right of way and highway improvement. If Obama was just to use his unemployed labor corps for just one thing, this should be it, because US railroads need major redevelopment.
While he’s at it, the US air hubs about need to be doubled, with the essential split being between passengers, and cargo—which should have their own hub connected to the railroads and highways.
When are the morons in Washington going to bail out the flippin' taxpayers? We're the ones stuck paying for all this BS. And it is BS - payola for the connected at the expense of the productive Americans trying to EARN their way through life.