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Despite What You´ve Heard,
´Crumbling Infrastructure´ Is A Myth

Investor´s Business Daily, by John Merline

Original Article

Posted By:RockyTCB, 2/13/2018 7:59:20 AM

Expect to hear the term "crumbling infrastructure" a lot in the days ahead, as Washington debates the merits of President Trump´s plan to boost spending on the nation´s roads, bridges, airports, railroads and whatnot by $1.5 trillion. What´s unlikely to come up in these discussions, however, is the question of whether the nation´s infrastructure is really "crumbling" at all. For the past four decades, there´s been a steady stream of dire warnings about how our aging infrastructure was rapidly falling apart, and that without a massive influx of federal spending, roads would be impassable, bridges would collapse, ports would be unusable, and


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Reply 1 - Posted by: mc squared, 2/13/2018 8:07:06 AM     (No. 11542104)

Just like schools are woefully short of money.

I´m not happy with DJT´s infrastructure proposals.

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Reply 2 - Posted by: Patchy Groundfog, 2/13/2018 8:11:06 AM     (No. 11542109)

Mr Merline, I don´t know what roads you travel on but the ones in the US interior ARE crumbling. The situation is not helped by a bid system that is all but rigged. When Company XYZ alone has the equipment to repave an Interstate then Company XYZ will get the bid. QED. But building an impregnable road means never getting a bid to pave it again.

With or without dodgy bids, construction projects are everywhere simply trying to keep up with the decay. How many times have we driven down a highway or arterial road and noted that another lane is desperately needed?

The crisis, such as it is, is that ´spending on infrastructure´ is the usual pork barrel. Instead of new lanes, bypasses, etc. we see money spent on choo-choo trains. Gas taxes are used as slush funds, especially at state level where balanced budgets are required and Sally Satchelbottom´s gold-plated pension must be funded after her 30-year stint in the department of letter sealing.

Toll lanes on existing freeways is madness both logistically and financially. We´ve already paid for the road. Paying for a second time simply to be able to move from A to B in under an hour is extortion.

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Reply 3 - Posted by: bnrmusa, 2/13/2018 8:36:27 AM     (No. 11542137)

I´ve never understood why the state and federal taxes that are calculated at the point of sale, could not be EFT´ed immediately into an escrow account. Right from the gas pump.

That account could be called the highway trust fund perhaps.

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Reply 4 - Posted by: jimjr, 2/13/2018 8:50:54 AM     (No. 11542146)

A few points to ponder...

A bridge is listed as "Structurally Deficient" if it can´t safely carry the state´s maximum legal load indefinitely. It doesn´t mean the bridge is on the verge of collapse.

Many road projects are designed to keep initial costs down, not for long-term performance.

Notice how roads get repaved just before elections? It´s not a coincidence.

Paving over potholes doesn´t fix the underlying problem.

Most contractors don´t own the equipment they use on road projects, they rent it.

A significant amount of the "Highway Trust Fund", funded from the Federal Excise tax on motor fuels, is used for non-highway projects including buses, "light rail" and "beatification" projects.

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Reply 5 - Posted by: Clinger, 2/13/2018 9:43:36 AM     (No. 11542204)

Before I repair something I’d like to ask a few questions. How was it originally funded, what percentage of taxpayers income was used, were taxes increased under the guise that they would be temporary, or did we crawl into debt to build them?
I can’t help but bristle at the notion that government at any level needs a greater share of our wealth to repair something than they did to build it in the first place.
And when did it become the Federal government’s job? Will this digress into a means to violate our constitutional government structure by doling out taxes based political expedience, or pay for play.

Trump is learning on the job there are things political junkies know he hasn’t learned yet. Is he aware that Illinois ranks 5th in the flow of funds to the Federal government and 47th in return? We are circling the drain to bankruptcy yet funding far more healthy states. Will this be more of the same? FYI no need to buy votes here the dems have it sewed up so take our money and buy a state in play.

This smells like another stimulus only this time we have a better story regarding what we intend to do with our shovels. Trump could be honest as they come but he runs a corrupt government that is at war with him. Fix the swamp then think about the roads.

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Reply 6 - Posted by: Rumblehog, 2/13/2018 9:59:29 AM     (No. 11542225)

Let the States keep their money and make THEM responsible for their infrastructure.

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Reply 7 - Posted by: Hotrod, 2/13/2018 10:08:30 AM     (No. 11542238)

FAR: ´´Mr Merline, I don´t know what roads you travel on but the ones in the US interior ARE crumbling.´´

The roads in my state (in the South) are in good shape. So are our bridges. Same for my neighboring states that I travel through. I think ´´crumbling infrastructure´´ is a local and state problem. Where have they spent the money that is supposedly to be used for infrastructure maintenance?

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Reply 8 - Posted by: JansGraphix, 2/13/2018 11:44:02 AM     (No. 11542343)

This is not how you ´tame´ the leviathan. Just like the massive $4T budget approved of, this is how you ´feed´ it.

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Reply 9 - Posted by: Chuzzles, 2/13/2018 2:05:23 PM     (No. 11542477)

Roads and Bridges all over the nation are indeed crumbling Mr. Merline. So many things need to be brought up to code and the modern times, simply for security purposes. When Bush wanted to upgrade the electrical grid after 9/11, your buddies in congress laughed in his face.

The media refuses to face reality yet again, ignores all the foundational problems of this nation, and yet Trump is the one with the mental problems.

Just because something hasn´t collapsed yet in a horrific manner, doesn´t mean that day is not coming Mr. Merline. When it does, I hope it is you and yours who gets caught in the crossfire. For it IS coming.

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