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Wed Mar 17, 2021, 05:47 AM

How is a potentially 2 trillion dollar or more infrastructure bill going to work

This is a question I've asked myself over and over for years. We all know we need to address it. We all know it will be massive. It could, and probably will, end up being the largest most expensive undertaking this country has ever attempted. If we're going to do it, it better not be half assed like defense spending.

But how are we going to do it? Roughly 60% of the people in this country live in towns of 15k or less, roughly 40% of those in towns of 500 or less. Those folks are going to be expected to be treated fairly on the same field as the bigger metropolises. Good luck high fiving a major project in a big city while those folks are still changing shocks on their cars every year because the roads suck, or are still buying bottled water while the news worthy cities get the improvements all towns need in this country.
Where is this money going to go? Who is going to distribute it and on what grounds? Nobody can expect someone in small town Iowa who needs a crumbling bridge over a small river to not get it fixed because a huge bridge in a major metro area is eating up 10's of millions. There are thousands of small towns nation wide that need the water infrastructure updated, a thousand Flints out there. Who decides which ones get the money and for that matter, make sure that money gets spent properly and fairly? Roads are more than interstates now. What about areas that want infrastructure improvement to continue or introduce trucking and rail service for small companies that say NYC could give a shit but locally might supply 500 jobs?
An infrastructure bill is desperately needed but this isn't the 50's, i.e. the interstates are there. We won't be building new we will be doing badly needed maintenance to what is there first then building anew for the coming century. Throw upgrading the power grid in there. Is Mexico Indiana going to get their grid upgraded? To be honest its the small town folks that make up more than half this country who always feel like they get left out by the big coastal cities east and west and the ones in between. These places are the breeding ground of Former Guyism for that simple fact.
We need to do it but IMO it needs to be done in a way thats never been done before. Unless it's done very precisely, very fairly, very realistically a huge infrastructure bill could go down as one of the biggest boondongles in history.
I do not envy anyone, either side of the political spectrum, anyone who is given the responsibility to make it work, literally anyone involved. It has failure written all over it unless we can be blessed with some extremely intelligent individuals to pull it off. Scary stuff if you ask me. We hire these folks they better pull it off.

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Reply How is a potentially 2 trillion dollar or more infrastructure bill going to work (Original post)
Cheezoholic Mar 2021 OP
Delarage Mar 2021 #1
dawg day Mar 2021 #2
JT45242 Mar 2021 #3
Duppers Mar 2021 #9
Voltaire2 Mar 2021 #4
jcgoldie Mar 2021 #5
honest.abe Mar 2021 #6
Hortensis Mar 2021 #7
stillcool Mar 2021 #8

Response to Cheezoholic (Original post)

Wed Mar 17, 2021, 06:49 AM

1. That's why 45 ignored it

I trust Mayor Pete to accomplish something good. Democrats usually do, then Repukes launch an all-out assault, somehow regain power, then vacuum any remaining money up to the top 1%. But infrastructure will be improved, as was healthcare.

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Response to Cheezoholic (Original post)

Wed Mar 17, 2021, 07:34 AM

2. Much of the money will probably be given to states...

So small towns and rural residents presumably will have to rely on pols they actually wanted and voted for.
.Their GOP governors and legislatures have been turning down Medicaid expansion that would for free benefit millions of rural citizens, and their voters were fine with that. But presumably federal money going for roads will be manly enough for a GOP governor to accept.

We all benefit from better roads, even in other states, because goods are transported and we have freedom to travel too. While a small town of course needs its own bridges, they also need projects in other areas, and it might help to remind us all of our interdependence.

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Response to Cheezoholic (Original post)

Wed Mar 17, 2021, 07:42 AM

3. Not true and misses the point...

Just a quick look at the metropolitan area statistics for the 50 largest metropolitan areas in the US shows it only takes to about the top 30 area to get half the US population.

Yes, lots of people live in SUBURBS of 15,000 of less but the vast majority of people live in metropolitan areas. I have for most of my lifetime. But I would never say that I lived in a small city. I lived in a small suburb of a big city.

But ignoring the factual fallacy, everyone benefits from infrastructure investment. It creates jobs which powers the economy. It helps the flow of goods, energy, and information by improving roads and rail, the electric grid, and providing high speed data possibilities.

If you can't convince people that better electric grids are needed after the last month, you need to do a better job communicating. If you can't convince folks that high speed internet needs to be available to all schools and communities after a year if online or hybrid learning, you aren't talking about the impact it has on families. Literally thousands of bridges in this country are to the point that even a mild catastrophic weather event cod cause failure.

Yes, corporations and the wealthy might have to pay a FAIR share instead of relying on corporate welfare. But everyone benefits from infrastructure. Here in Iowa, google and apple got $500 million in tax breaks PLUS infrastructure improvement for two facilities with a total of 100 workers. They didn't pay a dime, but the two million people who live in iowa who pay for that with no real benefits to the rest of us.

It is about communicating facts about who benefits, corporations or people...who pays and how.

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Response to JT45242 (Reply #3)

Wed Mar 17, 2021, 04:17 PM

9. Good post.

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Response to Cheezoholic (Original post)

Wed Mar 17, 2021, 08:01 AM

4. Your stats are off.

By generally accepted definitions the rural population of the USA is about 19%.
https://mtgis-portal.geo.census.gov/arcgis/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=49cd4bc9c8eb444ab51218c1d5001ef6

Also infrastructure bills have in the past transformed rural america, for example the rural electrification programs under the New Deal.

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Response to Cheezoholic (Original post)

Wed Mar 17, 2021, 08:14 AM

5. Rural americans benefit tremendously from road projects

All over states in rural areas like mine that money can go to projects that have been in the pipes to upgrade bridges or expand 2 lane roads to 4 lane roads for example. Those kinds of projects can cut in half the time it takes a great many rural americans to get to work or for entertainment in the city.

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Response to Cheezoholic (Original post)

Wed Mar 17, 2021, 08:24 AM

6. I dont know for sure but I suspect much of this for transit projects in suburbia..

and smaller towns getting people to work in the cities. This benefits the vast majority of the population. If you are in a very rural area and dont go to urban areas then I suppose this wont help you much although there might be road improvement projects. This also will creates tons of jobs.

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Response to Cheezoholic (Original post)

Wed Mar 17, 2021, 08:26 AM

7. Okay, THIS is cool: Interactive map with every dot making a New Deal site:

https://livingnewdeal.org/map/

You can choose by location, categories, and agencies. Or just click on a dot.

It's FABULOUS to begin to realize the enormity of what was accomplished BECAUSE the nation was in such desperate trouble. Simple lists of the many thousands of both historically huge and small projects does that even more.

You say it hasn't been done, but it has. I'm sorta guessing modern local projects will take the place of building with stone, but that's a detail.

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Response to Cheezoholic (Original post)

Wed Mar 17, 2021, 10:17 AM

8. Maybe, when the bill is written

and different measures are explained, you'll have a better idea, and maybe some checking on your population calculations would help as well. The same talking points have been used for generations, and define the us vs. them character of this country. Fear mongering, without knowing a damn thing.

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