[Vision2020] Putting Millionaires Before Jobs

Art Deco deco at moscow.com
Fri Nov 4 16:09:00 PDT 2011

I can't say where all the so-called trillion went.  But I know where some of it went:  Interstate Highway System repairs and enhancements.  I know this because of the signage I saw on two cross country trips I made this summer and other trips in Washington and Montana.  I saw at least a dozen projects.

When money is spent in on public infrastructure, the public gets the fruits of such expenditures in two ways:  improvement of the infrastructure (and the support it provides for all aspects of the economy which depend on transportation) and jobs which allow further spending and circulation of the monies invested.

These projects are seldom done perfectly and can be rife with corruption and inefficiency, but at least something gets done which benefits the general public more than the bail-outs, which not only pervert the so-called free enterprise system, but benefits those generally not needing benefits -- the wealthy.

And here's another infrastructure debt that we better start paying on:  health care and especially mental health care for veterans.  Failure to address this issue would not only be grossly unfair to those we asked to serve our country, but will lead to more murders and violence by those who served in Viet-Nam, Iran, and Afghanistan combat units.


From: Jay Borden 
Sent: Friday, November 04, 2011 2:04 PM
To: Vision2020 at moscow.com ; deco at moscow.com 
Subject: Re: [Vision2020] Putting Millionaires Before Jobs

Ok... so you're answer is basically "where spending nearly a trillion didn't work, spending $60B will succeed."


Sent from my Android phone... so ignore the typpos... 

-----Original Message-----
From: Art Deco [deco at moscow.com]
Received: Friday, 04 Nov 2011, 1:16pm
To: Vision 2020 [Vision2020 at moscow.com]
Subject: Re: [Vision2020] Putting Millionaires Before Jobs

I'd suggest that you spend sometime learning about the current state of our county's transportation infrastructure problems.

I've previously written about parts of this and will not repeat what most informed citizens know.


From: Jay Borden 
Sent: Friday, November 04, 2011 10:03 AM
To: Art Deco ; Vision 2020 
Subject: RE: [Vision2020] Putting Millionaires Before Jobs

What is it that this $60B spending will do that the previous "shovel ready stimulus packages" didn't?







November 3, 2011

Putting Millionaires Before Jobs
There's nothing partisan about a road or a bridge or an airport; Democrats and Republicans have voted to spend billions on them for decades and long supported rebuilding plans in their own states. On Thursday, though, when President Obama's plan to spend $60 billion on infrastructure repairs came up for a vote in the Senate, not a single Republican agreed to break the party's filibuster. 

That's because the bill would pay for itself with a 0.7 percent surtax on people making more than $1 million. That would affect about 345,000 taxpayers, according to Citizens for Tax Justice, adding an average of $13,457 to their annual tax bills. Protecting that elite group - and hewing to their rigid antitax vows - was more important to Senate Republicans than the thousands of construction jobs the bill would have helped create, or the millions of people who would have used the rebuilt roads, bridges and airports. 

Senate Republicans filibustered the president's full jobs act last month for the same reasons. And they have vowed to block the individual pieces of that bill that Democrats are now bringing to the floor. Senate Democrats have also accused them of opposing any good idea that might put people back to work and rev the economy a bit before next year's presidential election. 

There is no question that the infrastructure bill would be good for the flagging economy - and good for the country's future development. It would directly spend $50 billion on roads, bridges, airports and mass transit systems, and it would then provide another $10 billion to an infrastructure bank to encourage private-sector investment in big public works projects. 

Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison, a Republican of Texas, co-sponsored an infrastructure-bank bill in March, and other Republicans have supported similar efforts over the years. But the Republicans' determination to stick to an antitax pledge clearly trumps even their own good ideas. 

A competing Republican bill, which also failed on Thursday, was cobbled together in an attempt to make it appear as if the party has equally valid ideas on job creation and rebuilding. It would have extended the existing highway and public transportation financing for two years, paying for it with a $40 billion cut to other domestic programs. Republican senators also threw in a provision that would block the Environmental Protection Agency from issuing new clean air rules. Only in the fevered dreams of corporate polluters could that help create jobs. 

Mitch McConnell, the Senate Republican leader, bitterly accused Democrats of designing their infrastructure bill to fail by paying for it with a millionaire's tax, as if his party's intransigence was so indomitable that daring to challenge it is somehow underhanded. 

The only good news is that the Democrats aren't going to stop. There are many more jobs bills to come, including extension of unemployment insurance and the payroll-tax cut. If Republicans are so proud of blocking all progress, they will have to keep doing it over and over again, testing the patience of American voters. 



Wayne A. Fox
wayne.a.fox at gmail.com
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