Want to reboot the economy?

Want to reboot the economy? Build some new roads! The American Society of Civil Engineers released a new report yesterday showing our economy will lose $3 trillion over the next decade thanks to the poor condition of our national infrastructure. As the report says, “If the nation’s infrastructure were free of deficient conditions in pavement, bridges, transit vehicles, and track and transit facilities, Americans would earn more personal income and industry would be more productive.”

That means more revenue into the government – which means lower deficits. So not only would we be stimulating the economy with a new national infrastructure project – but we’d also be addressing our debt. And this isn’t a new idea – it’s exactly what Democratic and Republican presidents did after World War 2 when our national debt was even higher – Eisenhower built the interstate highway system and expanded what is now Amtrak.

It’s a no-brainer solution – unfortunately Eisenhower Republicans don’t exist anymore.


gerald's picture
gerald 12 years 47 weeks ago

Our household has a two word rallying cry. The first word is DEFAULT, DEFAULT, DEFAULT!!!!! Since we have had very dry weather, the second word is RAIN, RAIN, RAIN!!!!! A default won’t affect me because once the Reichstag takes over the WH and the Senate on January 20, 2013, I will have no Medicare and social security. An eight thousand dollar voucher won’t cover any procedures and I will be unable to pay for my medications. GOD IS NOT CALLING MY NUMBER FOR DEATH; IT IS THE REICHSTAG THAT IS CALLING THE SHOTS FOR MY DEMISE!!!!! Currently, I am a dead man walking who is preparing for death. And, we call our country a Christian country. Every time I hear that the Anti-Christ is a Christian country, I have a torrential upchuck.

I am a Christian but more specifically I am a Catholic. My frame of reference is Christian. Let me leave you this Beatitude! “Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven.” The United States in Mortal Sin is addicted to wars. Persons who seek justice and peace will be vilified in our Anti-Christ nation where the triad of evil reigns – money (greed), nuclear weapons, and false prophets.

gerald's picture
gerald 12 years 47 weeks ago

The Republicans, the Libertarians, and the Teabaggers are members of National Death Panels.

gerald's picture
gerald 12 years 47 weeks ago


Americans will never have war fatigue. War is a playful game for Americans.


Self-inflicted costs of hatred!

gerald's picture
gerald 12 years 47 weeks ago

It’s a no-brainer solution – unfortunately Eisenhower Republicans don’t exist anymore.

Thom, Americans have the ingenuity to resolve our many problems. In order to resolve these problems we need to pursue the common good for all Americans and for the world population. We have a role model in Jesus Christ of Nazareth for resolving our many problems.

gerald's picture
gerald 12 years 47 weeks ago

Will our very sexually active nation create more pandemic diseases that will kill off the human population?


gerald's picture
gerald 12 years 47 weeks ago

I wish that I was in a position to attend some great conferences, meetings, and seminars.


DRichards's picture
DRichards 12 years 47 weeks ago

Giant Banks Lobby to Raise the Debt Ceiling and Slash Public Benefits ... So They Can Keep Sucking at the Public Teet

Economist Dean Banker notes:

Wall Street will suffer more than anyone from a default and it will not let it happen. The public should know this, certainly Wall Street does.

No wonder the fatcats running the giant banks which received tens of trillions in bailouts, loans and guarantees from the American public are screaming loudly that the debt ceiling must be raised.

Robert Reich points out:

Why has Standard & Poor's decided now's the time to crack down on the federal budget -- when it gave free passes to Wall Street's risky securities and George W. Bush's giant tax cuts for the wealthy, thereby contributing to the very crisis its now demanding be addressed?

Could it have anything to do with the fact that the Street pays Standard & Poor's bills?http://georgewashington2.blogspot.com/

psc9300s's picture
psc9300s 12 years 47 weeks ago

Here's a possible scenario for this faux debt crisis. There are several possible scenarios, but nothing changes that fact that this entire debate in our government is a farce - everyone knows it, but not everyone will admit it.

Suppose Obama does apply the 14th Amendment to the US debt debate. It seems like a reasonable response considering the wording of this amendment. The Republicans will then likely file a suite against Obama claiming that he has violated the Constitution by circumventing the House of Representatives which has control over the purse strings. However, I can guarantee that the current US Supreme court will rule in favor of Obama. What this will do is take power away from the US congress and give it to the President. So, the most representative body of our government, the House or Representatives, will lose it's primary source of power and the Imperial Presidency will put one more nail in the coffin of our democracy.

Obama will come away a hero to the left for saving medicare and social security and to progressives, as well as to the right, for saving our credit rating and our economy, and he will also have appeased deficit hawks because he has offered more conservative spending plans than any Republican to date. What will appear as a win for democrats will truly be a loss for the people all because of the insanity of the Tea Party.

This all seems to good to be true. We'll soon see.

dowdotica's picture
dowdotica 12 years 47 weeks ago

I just mentioned Mr. Eisenhower to one of my rebumblican associates. Their rebute? "Oh, thats bull." I beleive we are at the precipice of sheer ignorance in our culture and tragically it might just have something to do with our system of education or lack of quality therein. I'm just sayin' yaknow!hey by the way while most things about world war 2 sucked didn't the audobon come out of it I know at one point in time its cited that it put some 100,000 otherwise destitue 99'ers back to work. heck if i could get a job running a loader i'd be there in a hot second!

dowdotica's picture
dowdotica 12 years 47 weeks ago

hey thom go ask rupert if you can run FOX! lolololol love ya man!!!

garryej's picture
garryej 12 years 47 weeks ago

People in my hometown of Vancouver, BC would shudder at the idea of "LA-style freeways". One day a retired LA freeway engineer (now living in BC) offered his view. The freeways (he wrote) are the life blood of southern Calif. Transit moves people but it does little, if anything, for goods and freight! When the freeways are clogged at the worst of times, this usually leaves the surface streets almost empty. He said he could drive his granddaughter to school on surface streets not worrying about the traffic, even at the height of rush hour. So, yes, freeways and transit are the lifeblood of our cities and our nation!

dannahancock23's picture
dannahancock23 12 years 47 weeks ago

You are right, it IS a no-brainer, and I am certain we will eventually get around to doing what needs to be done. I remember in the not too distant past, this being part of Obama's stimulus plan.

I came across a recent interview with candidate Gary Johnson. He said he would not vote for raising the debt ceiling because "We haven't had the fire sale yet." He actually said this. No mistake, there is an all-or-nothing effort to take this country into default and worse. The vultures must be Fed (pun intended).

“What most people don't seem to realize is that there is just as much money to be made out of the wreckage of a civilization as from the up-building of one. The only difference is that in the wrecking, you make your money faster.”

Rhett Butler via Margaret Mitchell

Semiquixotic's picture
Semiquixotic 12 years 47 weeks ago

Invest in Infrastructure. It's a simple cure to what ails us and a kick start that has worked over and over. Freeways, Bridges, Rail Systems, Ports, National Parks, Airports and other public works (solar and wind programs) would do amazing things to curb future costs of a failing infrastructure. It would put people to work, ignite private production and allow us all to be proud again of our American industriousness and ingenuity.

dianhow 12 years 47 weeks ago

Christain ? You do not sound like it You said ' Default will not affect YOU ' What about rest of us ? How about Do unto others .you know the rest . Anti Christ ? God must be upset with folks who claim to be Chritsian but are not living it.

dianhow 12 years 47 weeks ago

Ignorance and gulibility is rampant

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 12 years 47 weeks ago

Commuting to work each day, due to bad roads, I drive an extra 4 miles which multiplys to 1000 miles per year. It's either this or beat the living hell out of my car! This extra time and gas is real and I'm sure if I put more thought into it I could come up with several more examples of how the poor condition of our infrastructure effects me.

How about establishing another Civilian Conservation Corp?

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 12 years 47 weeks ago

"Ignorance is rampant"

Thanks in large part to the right- wing MASSIVE MEDIA!......great at massive control of lazy thinkers!

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 12 years 47 weeks ago

Excellent idea, Thom, on The Big Picture, in showing all of those CEOs that laid off workers! Hope you keep it up....Maybe a "Hall of Shame" every day would be a good idea. Constant exposure to the light of day might do some good except these CEOs are proud of what they did and probably brag about it anyway. But at least it might be a little cathartic...like burning scoundrels in effigy. Do you think your studio would allow bonfires? If the idiot Koran burners can do it, why can't we burn scoundrel CEOs and banksters in effigy? I'm sure many would rather use the real thing but, hey, we're all civilized here...right? ...right?

Also, that guy you had on that was trying to say that there are no Christian terrorists because to be a terrorist..you can't be a Christian...real Christians wouldn't do terrorism. Real Christians turn their other cheek, don't they? Yeah, right!!! There's nothing more terrifying than a jihadist Christian scorned! They blow up abortion clinics and anybody in them...but they are not terrorists? Yeah right! Well, I suppose the same thing could be said of Muslims as well. But you are really talking to a brick wall...these simple-minded numbskulls just don't get it....in reality, they are xenophobic hate-driven simpletons. Oh, and they always dismiss the Old Testament (too embarrassing, I guess).

PLSzymeczek's picture
PLSzymeczek 12 years 47 weeks ago
jstrahan's picture
jstrahan 12 years 47 weeks ago

Everyone who voted in the new tea party Republicans should pat yourselves on the back. You are very close to losing your right to a guaranteed Medicare option, serious reduction in Social Security benefits, likely increase in your house and car payments, a serious hit on your 401K acct, and increase in you credit card interest for starters. You are responsible for the first time in history that this country defaults on its debt. Congratulations. In addition, these same people are doing their best to defund the EPA, FDA, FFA, transportation and education departments, etc. If you have children or grandchildren, don't let them play outside. If you think pollution is bad now, wait a few months. If you live in an area where hydraulic fracturing is going on to drill for natural gas, don't drink the water, but instead you can light it in the winter for a night light and to heat the house. If the Chinese ship more toys here, pray your child does not put them in their mouth. If you think you were screwed by Wall Street and the banks before, wait until next year. If you drive over a bridge on the way to work, be sure your life insurance is sufficient to support your family in event you don't make it home. If you fly anytime soon, hope and pray there someone on the radar at the airport when it time to land. If you have a child of color they will soon have an opportunity to go to a school with only other children of color attending. If you lost your job and home, you can now expect to also lose Food Stamps as well. If your kid goes to college on a Pell Grant, he won't in the future. If you are worried about your family's future, ask someone who voted for the tea party candidates and ask them to pray for you because they are convinced that God has chosen them personally to do whatever is necessary to accept as an equal only white people who share their religion, marry their cousin, don't believe in income tax, believe segregated schools is how God would do it, believe to have a miscarriage is manslaughter, and look forward to re-fighting the Civil War.Isn't this a great country?

David Abbot's picture
David Abbot 12 years 47 weeks ago

Well, it's cost me my belief that this government has the ability- or even the desire!- to do anything to protect the interests of middle and poor classes. In fact, it has caused me to believe that our elected officials are so ____ing stupid that half of them are actively trying to destroy America and the other half are sitting on their asses and twiddling their thumbs while it happens. It's difficult to get more stupid than that without taking lessons. And I'm even talking about extremely intelligent people like Obama who, for some unknown reason, are acting like total idiots. There are a very, very few exceptions, such as Bernie Sanders, who really should run for president, and Dennis Kucinich, who should also run for president.

Ok, now I have some questions about politicians:

Question: How can you tell that an elected official is standing on a level surface?

Answer: He's drooling out of both sides of his mouth.

Question: How do you get 500 elected officials to agree on whether it is day or night?

Answer: Recall 499 of them, and ask the one remaining moron. Then recall him, too, because he's probably trying to get you to believe that day is night.

Question: Why isn't it fair to say that elected officials are as dumb as rocks?

Answer: It's an insult to rocks.

Berry's picture
Berry 12 years 47 weeks ago

What is a Capitatist? Who are the real Capitatist ? How does capitalism work? Are there levels, or degrees? Is our society a capitatist society or is it just for a few ? Who does a Capitatist live off of? Is capitalism here working for everyone?

robinkilgore's picture
robinkilgore 12 years 47 weeks ago

To your point and question, Thom, I can tell you that the poorly maintained roads in my neck of the woods have cost me several HUNDREDS of dollars in additional repairs, towing charges, and personal inconvenience. Let's get people back to work by hiring them to repair and improve our decaying infrastructure, making certain that they have a 'living wage'. That could work miracles for our economy.

tim-mccoy's picture
tim-mccoy 12 years 47 weeks ago

John Dominic Crossan is an ex Catholic priest, biblical scholar and archeologist. he has written extensively about the history of Christianity and makes the case that in order to understand Christianity, you have to understand the relevant history.

So he talks about the impact of empire on the subdued population and in doing so he discusses the concentration of wealth. And it occurs to me (I'm sure to many others before) that concentration of wealth and war are the two key recurring themes throughout history that no government or economic system has been successful at preventing for what - more than 200 years? (Pax Romana?).

OK...So...if Capitalism results in concentration of wealth just like all the old "unjust" systems...then why do we allow the Club for Growth...to club the crap out of us with this dogma?

Ayn Rand makes the case that Capitalism is an extension of your right to your life which is axiomatic. This is why I think they feel they do not have to defend wealth disparity.

The Earth is alive. We are all brothers and sisters. And, as the President says every chance he gets....we are all One. (I assume he capitalizes it ;) Teach this to people. Change their belief and their behavior will take care of itself.

zamfir's picture
zamfir 12 years 47 weeks ago

Thank you 2950 10K, for the media mind control......if folks knew how many billions go into the "control" thru the Kochs, Murderocs, and lobbyists from all big money banks and corporations, and the 6 big media corporations themselves filtering everything.....well, ignorance IS rampant....and so, so sad. hope to meet you in another life, ha!

zamfir's picture
zamfir 12 years 47 weeks ago

re:gerald to:dianhow he was being fascetious.

gerald's picture
gerald 12 years 47 weeks ago

@zamfir, you have very good insight. The people who know me say that I have a dry sense of humor.

tim-mccoy's picture
tim-mccoy 12 years 47 weeks ago

Wisdom is concern for others tempered with concern for self. ( and visa versa)

Mark_Pash's picture
Mark_Pash 12 years 46 weeks ago

Remember Japan has spent very large sums on infrastructure. It has helped but was not the answer to growth. This great recession was 100% caused by the monetary system! Therefore, the complete solution is in the monetary system not the fiscal sytem. The complete answer is in the Monetary Reform Section at www.progressive-economics.com. This is the website for the Center for Progressive Economics. The Center addresses the four major flaws of capitalism and is the solution to the failure of Socialism and Laissez-Faire-Libertarian Macroeconomics. It is a system NOT based on human perfection but on human imperfection. It also has developed the 20 principles of Progressive Economics. It is mainly a economic only defense of progressive economics and includes: The Global Economic Civil Rights and The Care and Protection of Customers/Clients/Consumers/Citizens.

Center for Progressive Economics

T-Vine's picture
T-Vine 12 years 46 weeks ago

And the right's rant will be that it's not the governments duty to make jobs. And within the same breath critize Obama with "where are all the jobs?"

There is a new name for this (even though I just made it up now) and it's called quantum politics, where a politican can be in two places at the same time. Amazingly it doesn't violate any laws of physics and the right has figured it out.

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