Friday, April 16, 2021

Infrastructure. Gotta Do It.

Rumor has it that Congressional Republicans will soon present their own infrastructure plan. If true, it’s a positive development, depending on what is and isn’t in it, and how they plan to pay for it. (Not by raising corporate taxes, they’ve already said.)

In any case, it'd be refreshing for a party that had, for decades, given up producing legislation of its own, other than military spending and limiting voting rights of Americans. It’s much easier and more attractive to their base, simply to decry and block, if they can, whatever Democrats produce. They did it during President Barack Obama’s administration, kept at it through Trump’s, and the production/block cycle continues today.

So far, the Republican response to President Biden’s wide-ranging plan has been to argue about the meaning of “infrastructure.” And, from Mitch McConnell, a promise that not a single Republican senator would vote for it; period, end of discussion. Which surprised exactly no one except, possibly, the President himself, who, like President Obama but perhaps less naively, still contends there’s a possibility of Republican helpfulness.

On the other hand, it was a gift: Mitch’s proclamation freed President Biden from wasting time trying to cajole cooperation from the right. And it makes coffee-out-nose-laughable the complaints, regularly heard on rightwing media, that Joe is forsaking his commitment to bipartisanship.

Sure, we could argue about what fits the definition of infrastructure. Setting aside South Dakota’s Republican Governor Kristi Noem’s forehead-fracturing claim that pipes and housing have nothing to do with it, one might question the inclusion of various items. But why? It is what it is: a much-needed, serious attempt to make up for precious lost time in addressing increasingly costly, previously neglected needs of our country.

To his credit, Trump campaigned, among other disingenuous promises, on rebuilding infrastructure. Who can count the number of disappearing “infrastructure weeks” he announced during his tenure? But at least it was Republican recognition that action has been too long in coming. Remember, it was the last of the honest and pragmatic Republican presidents, Dwight Eisenhower, who convinced Congress to pony up for the interstate highway system; making the case that it was a matter of national security. Which is a pillar of conservatism.

Aging dams and bridges are security threats, too. The same for an inadequate electric grid and unsafe water. Underfunded schools. Insufficient housing. Limited healthcare access and not caring for our elderly. And, maybe more than anything else, the climate change emergency, broiled in which we now find ourselves. 

However we choose to label them, America has chronically neglected needs, and it’s way past time to address them. The longer we wait, the more it’ll cost, and the more likely is disaster to happen in the meantime. As with his pandemic relief plan, President Biden’s proposals for rebuilding America (which will actually MAGA) enjoy broad public support, even among Republican voters.

It’s not mysterious: most everyone has had to pay for needed repairs or upgrades; many have seen the consequences of delaying them. In our homes, for our families, we do what we must. In rejecting it, Congressional Rs would, yet again, flout the will of the people. And please countries hoping for America’s decline.

The problem, compounding hourly, is that rebuilding costs money. Staggering amounts of it. Far more, even, than President Biden is asking for. We all know it, and we know putting it off makes it worse. The only question is how to pay for it. And, no, dear Republicans, the answer isn’t another fairy-dust, trickle-down tax cut. Or a piper-postponing, bond-selling smokescreen. And, no, dear Democrats, the money can’t come entirely from corporations and millionaires.

President Biden ought to rescind his pledge about people making less than $400 thousand a year. Everyone drinks water, uses roads and electricity. And breathes. Plus, it’ll create millions of jobs. In fact, taking a page from the Republican bumper-sticker book, but honest and descriptive, it’s named “The American Jobs Plan.” Worth a read. 

Not wanting to spend money doesn’t change the need. We do it to keep our families safe; we must do it for our country, too, which amounts to the same thing. China understands this, evidently better than we, as they build and pave their way past us, everywhere.
And now, the Trump story of the week: Saffron-spined Republican senators gave him a made-up award, titled like a Marvel comic, engraved on a tiny silver bowl. In gratitude, spewing his usual undead election lies and worse, he called Mitch McConnell a “dumb son of a bitch.” 

Mitch McConnell isn’t dumb.


  1. Thank you for the link to White House dot gov and the American Jobs Plan. As usual, did you read it? If not, I'd like to read what the one you trusted to summarize it writes about it, perhaps you could post a link like on a different article earlier.
    It's an interesting read, though it's laced with hyperbole, which is odd for a "Fact Sheet". But I have no dispute with what he's wanting to do, just think it can easily be framed positively, not negatively, and without the pandering to race, women, and, well, I could make a list in declining order of the number of occurrences of that type of thing. It would decrease the 32 pages and 11,732 words to something more readable if I did.
    btw, "infrastructure" is mentioned 71 times in it! Wow!
    Also, and disturbing mind you, is that if you click on the link on that same "The American Job Plan" page at the top which reads "Priorities", note that the word "infrastructure" doesn't appear on that page at all!
    It is highly interesting to "find" the word "priori" in the White House Plan. It's used 9 times in the report, and gives insight into President Biden's plan. Microsoft Word is an incredibly useful tool to search on things like this in what people write.
    Techniques like this are very useful for reviewing the incredible length of discourse our government puts out for simple concepts like 702 pages on, uhhhh, what was that we talked about last week?

    1. What are you trying to say?

      As for "priority" vs. "Infrastructure"

      " It would decrease the 32 pages and 11,732 words to something more readable if I did.
      btw, "infrastructure" is mentioned 71 times in it! Wow!
      Also, and disturbing mind you, is that if you click on the link on that same "The American Job Plan" page at the top which reads "Priorities", note that the word "infrastructure" doesn't appear on that page at all!"

      Every one of the "Priorities" are listed further on as "Infrastructure". Ad nauseum...

      But then...If you actually did read it, you'd know that and are just being disingenuous.

      Making nothing into something again.

      Whatever, I get tired of it.

    2. (Somewhat) less annoyed and snarky: yes, I read the things I share here. Next time you ask, the answer will be the same.

    3. It changes "hate" into "progress", for those who seek "unity". We're getting closer to "unity" as an objective.
      Imagine if the "press" ever rallied around "unity" as an objective. But then, " may say that I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one..."
      Even the tired can love their enemy. There's an entire Book about that, for those who would want something like that.

    4. Yes, and it's called "All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten."

    5. Interesting choice, love it!!
      Robert Fulghum's "Storyteller's Creed":
      "I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge.
      That myth is more potent than history.
      That dreams are more powerful than facts.
      That hope always triumphs over experience.
      That laughter is the only cure for grief.
      And I believe that love is stronger than death."
      The interested can find his book on , which is a great source for all sort of old books.
      Fun reading, like Art Linkletter's "Kids Say the Darndest Things", which I love.
      But then, he's a universalist, which can be problematic depending on what he thinks that is. For that, the only Book that matters, also found on, for free.
      Is your writing room like his?
      Now, for an amazing factoid, do you know that he and I crossed paths long ago? (Lakeside) Because of this, I wonder, did you too?

    6. My writing room is more like this:

    7. "Why do I continue writing? To be useful."
      ...but read the whole thing he wrote (for all who read Sid).
      From his website:
      Robert will soon be 84. I have a friend who continues to write and draw and ponder all things. He's 89, and he's still going strong, though you won't know it by looking at him. The physical fades, but the Spirit never dies, believe that!
      Thanks for reaching out. Have a good day!

  2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Because I was troubled, I just did another careful reading, transferred into Word, and did the following changes (and a few deliberately I left alone):
    - communities of color = communities 5 changes
    - the majority of whom are women of color = Americans 1 change
    - able to get away with = __________ 1 change
    - and overdue = ______________ 1 change
    - racial equity = Americans 3 changes
    - "and component parts Made in America and shipped on U.S.-flag vessels with American crews under U.S. laws" =>> incredibly significant!! (Pg 3 - amazingly correct choice of our President!)
    households of color = Americans- 1 change
    - People of color and low-income people are = Americans 1 change
    - Black and Hispanic residents were twice as likely as white residents to = Americans 1 change
    - : a much higher percentage of White families use home broadband internet than Black or Latino families = ___________ 1 change
    - disproportionately benefit women, people of color, and people with disabilities = benefit many Americans
    - students of color = homeless students
    - are disproportionally women of color = are Americans
    - did NOT change HBCU things
    - women, people of color, and children = Americans 1 change
    - racial and gender equity = participation 1 change
    - did NOT change "structural racism"
    - women and people of color = Americans 2 changes
    - did NOT change "and a reckoning on race that reveals deep disparities"
    - workers of color and for women, = all Americans 1 change
    - racial, gender, and other = opportunity 2 changes
    - racial and other = opportunity 1 change
    - based on gender = on Americans 1 change
    It shortened the document from 23 pages to 22 pages, and, it's amazing how well it now reads having been stripped of the discrimination elements in the plan. It's a good plan (!) without the incendiary things in it. Amazing how small things incite, easily avoided. If only a little fish in the sea mattered, and could have thoughts looked at by those who are important! (signed, Democrat; forgot earlier, sorry)

    1. I see...

      Remove chosen contextual elements and it completely changes everything.

  4. Wishing ill for others is bad karma. So I'll just opine that if a bridge were to collapse when McConnell (and no one else) was driving on it, it would be the epitome of ironic fates.

  5. Moscow Mitch isn't stupid but he has used his position to prevent our great democracy from succeeding in it's constitutional mission to insure a government of the people, for the people, and by the people.
    White supremacy terrorist groups, the gun lobby, abortion abolishment organizations, and MAGA cultists depend on MM to protect their unpopular agendas against the common good of a huge majority of American citizens.
    Stop the filibuster!

  6. "President Biden ought to rescind his pledge about people making less than $400 thousand a year. Everyone drinks water, uses roads and electricity. And breathes."

    I couldn't disagree more. The wealth disparity in this country is down right criminal. Let's not get into sleazy politics. We all know that tune. It's not how much you have. It's what you do with it. It's not how much you have to start with, it's how much in the end...

    "Creating jobs" is great. But 50 years of austerity is enough. Forever wars. Banks outright fleecing people and constantly bailed out to the point that every major bank has "Bailout Money" as a financial strategy/business plan. Wall Street investors need to use more of their own cash and actual cash per transaction. No more mining the stock markets.

    The poor can't afford to pay attention. When as few as 400 people own 1/2 off all the wealth in America, there's a problem. Monopolies like Amazon and the major banks etc. and the like need to be broken up.

    I could go on and on about how taxing the wealthy...They'll be OK...But tax the poor...Naw, they eat noodles and butter for dinner.

    We need a "TRICKLE UP" economy.

    1. It's a matter of where to draw the line. I'm saying $400,000/year is a bit too high. How 'bout $250,000?

      And the tax rate at that level would be lower than for those above $400K.

      See? We're negotiating.

    2. SOLD! 250K...But that bottom has to be minimal. Meaning they'd barely notice gone, if they even notice at all.

      The uber wealthy? They need a serious adjustment. Businesses as well need tax hikes. Multi billion dollar companies should pay their fare share. Amazon gets a tax rebate...Are we serious? No...But it's high time we got serious.

      I remember not long ago...

      I had my dental pulled and for 3.5 years no dental care unless it was an extraction. 5 teeth later and about 3-5 not looking well. I had to make a sacrifice because of the shitty economy. Skin in the game-The poor have refrigerators and TV's. They need some skin in the game...meanwhile...The crooks come out of the woodwork to smash union contract talks and give Boeing 8 billion+ if they'll stay...But there's a catch if Boeing gets that money.

      But they have to pinky promise they'll build planes here and not move.

      I'm not looking for revenge or get all sour about it. Although I'd love to get a dance with a bean counter. All I am saying is that things need to change quickly. It's been 50 years of "austerity economics" and it worked to perfection. America has been looted.

      Naw, corporations need to pay higher taxes so they cant just move to TX. or some other shithole state and take advantage of the 'mericans living there in perma desperation.(That's Latin for starving homeless).

      The major costs of doing business is energy and labor. We need to fix our 1900's electric grid. Our roads etc. We use go to work at Amazon and drive their trucks everywhere for 10 hours a day. So My nickels and Amazons dollars.

      They can always take their business elsewhere. But those laws need to be updated as well as privacy laws and tech laws are wayyyy behind.

      But yeah...My attitude is pack it up if you wanna go to Istanbul or wherever to build planes but Federal taxes need to rise dramatically.

  7. Love the negotiating, and am compelled to offer data for perspective. Smooth is much closer to what could be than the lowering from $400K to $250K. The IRS provides data for that, the work of which I've done many times, and refresh with each release they provide. Two worksheets they provide, with the learning from each combined, are adequate for the magnitude of the issue. They can be found here:
    There's income, and there's wealth, two different things; one being what the mustards have already taken from everyone, the other being what they take from everyone every year. And, when considered that these tax returns don't show the full extent of "what's legal", i.e. the privileged deductions so masterfully maintained by BOTH parties for the incredulously rich, well, that would be further research.
    All it would take is $600 Bill-ion per year to bring everyone up to a livable income, and, it wouldn't dip as low as even the $400K per year earners to accomplish that.
    And, for this my friends call me socialist. I correct them and tell them I'm a thief. Just like Robbing Hood, there's no mystery to how that author came up with the idea for his story.
    It could be accomplished by simply affecting the top 25,000 "earners" in the United States, as if anyone who "earns" an average of $29 million per year actually does anything for it more important than the one who hands me my egg-mc-muffin.

    1. Sure...But this is who we are dealing with...

  8. This is who we are dealing with...Evil people...Corporations are people remember????

    Let's end corporate welfare!

  9. Now the alt right Stasi is warning you to vote a certain way or else!

    Welcome to happy Florida folks.

  10. Absolutely love this picture of Joe (full URL so you can see the article it's in:
    Wondering what the media is saying with a chosen picture like this for the article? Thoughts? Anyone?

    1. My thoughts are alt right types loves them memes. In fact it's the party platform. No really, the memes are the drivers of their policy decisions. There's no actual party platform, I was kidding about that.


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