Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Retort to "Today" Stimulus Reporting

There was an interesting little story on the Today show this morning about some of the more questionable items "hidden" in the recovery package. I quote hidden because I had heard about the things highlighted in this story before. Before I offer my critique, watch the package for yourself:

Also consider this country desperately needs an infrastructure upgrade. If you are skeptical to this fact, please see the 2009 Report Card for America's Infrastructure. Note the overall grade listed in the lower right. It's a solid D. The investment cost to bring this country up to snuff is $2.2 trillion. This train is a small, much needed beginning. Start with one stretch that costs $8 billion. Show that it works and is cost effective and build another and another until the entire country's rail system has been upgraded. Yes, $8 billion is a lot of money, but put in the context of the $787 billion total, it's 1%.

Second, they attack $1 billion on clean coal. Wasn't this constantly mentioned during the election as a priority for both candidates? If this is a viable option for reducing carbon emmissions then why wouldn't we do it? Same with the "neighborhood electric vehicles." We're talking about $300 million out of $787 billion! Use them in parks, on army bases, wherever. Plug them in anywhere and don't fill them up. You don't have to! They're Good for the environment and good for the wallet. Again, it's a good, small step in the right direction.

Finally, if you didn't think Republicans were behind the production of this story, they go on to tick off education, health care, and the arts as examples of liberal wasteful spending. Oh, and don't forget the nice little "STIMULUS PORK-$787 Billion For This" title at the bottom. Ugh!

Folks, President Obama has said this time and again, this is a spending bill. Our economy works when people spend money. Seeing as how the Government is the only institution with money these days, they're the only ones who can spend. Again put this in perspective. The total amount of the projects presented here is $9.3 billion dollars, or 1.2% of the $787 billion stimulus. Frankly, I'm all for spending like this.

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