Here We Go Again – Right Says America “Can’t Afford” Infrastructure 

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before:

In response to questions of why she opposed President Biden’s infrastructure plan even though she submitted requests for several projects for her district, Congress member Mariannette Miller-Meeks ponied up the old tried and true Republican line about spending:   

Republicans, including Miller-Meeks, complained the overarching legislation was too costly, unpaid for and would drive up deficits.

“(I)t would continue to drive both our deficit and inflation,” Miller-Meeks said in an interview Friday, arguing the bill lacked details about spending cuts, or “pay-fors,” to account for the new spending and ignored input from House Republicans. “Successful legislating requires partnership, not partisanship. And I’ll continue to work in that vein.”

Congress Member Meeks like any of the interchangeable Republicans in congress pulled out one of their oldest tropes. “We can’t afford it — wah, wah, wah.” Was there any mention that the reason we are so far in debt is because of unreasonable and irresponsible spending and tax cuts foisted on this country by Republican leadership over the last 40 years since the dawn of Reaganomics?

President Biden’s infrastructure plan is an investment in America. It is an investment that America must have immediately to remain competitive commercially in world markets. It is also needed immediately to stave off crumbling infrastructure that is about to go under to the ravages of age, neglect and climate change. As we saw in Texas last winter our electric systems are creaky. We still have municipal water systems using lead pipes. We have sewer systems that go back to the 1800s that are simply ready to collapse. 

That is just the the top must do repairs. As a country we need a national internet policy that includes the whole country. We need and available and well trained work force that can continue to dominate the world of commerce. Without investments in these areas we will slip behind quickly and playing catch up will be hard if not impossible.

In contrast to Republican plans, President Biden’s will create the playing field where American can succeed. These will be investments in the mold of investments such as our country has made in the past. These investments included the GI Bill that paid to educate soldiers from WWII and Korea to become the skilled workforce we needed in the 50s and 60s.

It is also in the mold of the Interstate Highway system that the Eisenhower Administration began. Both of these paid back multiple times their cost in tax revenues.

On the other hand, Republicans forays into “stimulus” consists mostly of handing huge chunks of public money to corporations and the wealthy. The results of these programs have been to do little to stimulate anything but the bottom line of the extreme rich while returning nothing to the country. Said another way, Republican stimuli were nothing but a transfer of money from the poor through the government to the wealthy – a reverse Robin Hood.

From Bloomberg:  

Tax cuts for rich people breed inequality without providing much of a boon to anyone else, according to a study of the advanced world that could add to the case for the wealthy to bear more of the cost of the coronavirus pandemic.

The paper, by David Hope of the London School of Economics and Julian Limberg of King’s College London, found that such measures over the last 50 years only really benefited the individuals who were directly affected, and did little to promote jobs or growth.

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The authors applied an analysis amalgamating a range of levies on income, capital and assets in 18 OECD countries, including the U.S. and U.K., over the past half century.

Their findings published Wednesday counter arguments, often made in the U.S., that policies which appear to disproportionately aid richer individuals eventually feed through to the rest of the economy. The timespan of the paper ends in 2015, but Hope says such an analysis would also apply to President Donald Trump’s tax cut enacted in 2017.

“Our research suggests such policies don’t deliver the sort of trickle-down effects that proponents have claimed,” Hope said.

Let us also add in that Republicans started 2 wars and a “War on Terror” that have among the three cost this country an estimated $6.5 Trillion dollars without any raise in taxes. Instead as soon as they regain power the very first thing they do is pass a tax cut for the very rich.

So let us return to Congress Member Meeks regurgitation of the old Republican talking point. Her claim that we can’t afford the infrastructure deal is a lie. We have to have at a minimum repairs or we will be facing costly repairs in the future. She belies her own talking points by requesting funds for projects in her district. Very hypocritical of her.

She also assumes that there will be no way to pay for these improvements. Not true. Unlike Republican “stimulus” there is  plan to rescind some of the previous unpaid for Republican tax cuts to pay for the projects. Plus we can expect a rise in revenues as stimulus to commerce kicks in much as what happened when the interstate highway system was built.

And finally, where does she come off bad-mouthing a bill while coming around with her hat in her hand begging for some of that money. Gawd, what a hypocrite. Hey Congress Member, people see-through your hypocrisy. 

About Dave Bradley

retired in West Liberty
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