January 25, 2011
All together now sing 'Infrastructure'
Can anyone think of a shrewder way to garner support that to tout "infrastructure investment. These are Barack Obama's plans for the State of the Union address and for winning the White House in 2012. Again, as he did with the AMA and AARP during the fight to pass Obama Care, Barack Obama has figured out the magic words to buy off unions and business-at the expense of taxpayers and their children who will be paying off these boondoggles for decades to come. People, people, people: these are not "investments" in the future, they are spendthrift boondoggles. They are pork.
From Peter Schroeder of The Hill:
Groups from across the political spectrum are hoping President Obama will renew his vow to increase investment in the nation's infrastructure during Tuesday's State of the Union address.
An infrastructure plan could provide a rare opportunity for the president to make strides with both the business community and labor unions - traditional foes that both say infrastructure improvements should be an urgent priority.
"There are a lot of issues that are very divisive now," said Matt Jeanneret, spokesman for the American Road & Transportation Builders Association. "This isn't one of them."Tuesday's State of the Union, dubbed by the White House as a plan for "Winning the Future," will reportedly include infrastructure upgrades as one of several key areas needed for the U.S. to be competitive and recover from the recession.
"What we're looking for is a sustained and substantial plan to invest in infrastructure," said Thea Lee, deputy chief of staff at the AFL-CIO, the nation's largest labor coalition.
John Horsley, executive director of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, said his group is "hopeful" that Obama will stress the "importance of infrastructure investment" during his address to the nation.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce says improvements to the nation's foundational grid are a key component of creating jobs and driving the economic recovery.
Tom Donohue, the president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, called for a "strong, consistent and reliable federal commitment to infrastructure" during a closely watched address on Jan. 11.
When unions, big business and government officials all come together to cheer a government plan it generally means the taxpayers are the odd man out -- you know, the people who pay for it all. Meanwhile, a portion of those dollars that business and unions will be showered with will be funneled to Democratic politicians to fuel their campaigns. A prime beneficiary will be Barack Obama. He should know from, his days in Illinois that there is big money in asphalt. The asphalt king of Illinois, William Cellini, Senior, has had a long history of mixing government corruption with taxpayer-funded business.
Will all these infrastructure projects be overpriced because of Davis-Bacon rules and Project Labor Agreements -- both mandate high wages for laborers, most of whom are union members. Their dues, in turn, then fund the campaign war chests of Democrats.
One more question: are these just going to be a string of shovel-ready projects similar to the ones that never existed when we were promised the stimulus bill would be used to fund them? Will we now have yet another boom in the signage industry as those brand-new shiny signs are put up boasting of the success of Barack Obama? Not if one Illinois Republican Congressman has his way.