This week has been designated “National Infrastructure Week” by the US Chambers of Commerce, the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), and over 150 affiliates. Their message: “It’s time to rebuild.” Ever since ASCE began issuing its “National Infrastructure Report Card” in 1998, the nation has gotten a dismal grade of D or D+. In the meantime, the estimated cost of fixing its infrastructure has gone up from $1.3 trillion to $4.6 trillion.
The years when I was in a small business carpentry partnership, there was no political measure placed on which customers we would serve. Nowadays, I figure elected democrats become 'centrist' in order to serve the 'majority' which necessarily includes some fair proportion of conservative ideology, and, elected republicans have no compunction to serve even a majority of their republican base. I figure a functioning society is collectivist, a fact taken for granted with every purchase and service rendered. Republicans live as if the ideology of individualism's only connection to other members of society is money.
Some balance between individualism (liberty) and collectivism (organized production/distribution) is to me like the Yin/Yang Buddhist symbol representing equitable cooperation. I believe civilization suffers mostly through class warfare, ie, the moneyed interests exploiting the working poor and middle class. The most powerful business interests are historically related to transport and travel. While the global economy requires the most long-distance transport, the lesser economies - local, regional, State and national - though equally fundamental, cannot function optimally when dedicated to serve the global economy. The republican plans for infrastructure investment are almost completely related to the global economy. Go figure.
The privatizing frenzy is reaching devastating proportions, and doing a lot of damage. The very first thing we need to change is our privatized monetary system with its layers of regulation and process to hide the fact that it is privately controlled. We need to return the Money Power to government so it can fulfill its mandate as stated in the first sentence of the Constitution. It gives Congress, not the private baking system, the power to create and issue money as needed for the general welfare. The corporate system of wealth extraction for them and scarcity for the rest of us needs to put to an end.
We don't need insurance companies to have healthcare.
Nor do we need commercial banks to run our economy.
Own to rent
You just make too much sense Ellen and the fat cats will not have any of it. Reagan so demonized government and republicans continued that mantra and we have many millions citizens believe the lies of the profit takers. Or, they think they can become one of those fat cats?
True! Also, China, and Japan have the most advance high speed rail train system in the world, and America has the chu-chu Amrak rail system. Even the French had the TGV high speed rail train debut in 1980. America can fund infrastructure with its own credit, but won't because American fat cats fly in Gulf Stream jets, etc., and care less about the common good, and still the dumb-tards of America still money worship, and believe the line of crap spoon fed to them that we need to run America like a business.
There are a lot of things that "We" can do, but are prevented from doing, due to the fact that We the People are no longer represented in our Government, especially on the subject of how Our Tax Money is spent.
OK, we're talking 2 issues here. First, it is ever so important, however one defines "private-public partnerships," to make sure that infrastructure is fully publicly owned when completed. Second, interest rates are very low, thus, now is an excellent time to build stuff. 20 or 30 year financing works out to barely over 0% interest with normal inflation.
Bit off topic, but please - no more infrastructure anything like that depicted above. Couldn't Ms. Brown or CD have found a stock photo of a high speed train or streetcar?
Private financiers will obviously require a lien on the project, and typical 3P projects require private ownership and usually operation ( via tolls). When the project eventually is devolved into public hands, it will be been run into the ground and in terrible shape.
Wonderful link easyed, thanks...
I'm sure you're correct with today's right wing definition of 3P projects, but, as I see it, virtually all government involved infrastructure has a large private component because private contractors do most of the work. It's simply crazy to not have immediate public ownership when the project is completed. When the government can borrow for near zero interest cost, as is now the case, then private financing is ridiculous. All we really need for leadership at the moment are leaders with some intelligence and respect for the American people. Unfortunately, that is a real problem at this time.
I have been trying to explain to my book group how this kind of Economy would work and by presenting both Ellen's article and this essay from nakedcapitalism, I will be easily able to do that, so many thanks.
Note: There is much truth in this article; little real magic in lending, the real limitation is resources.
Many thanks. Glad to be of service
I have been trying to explain to my book group how this kind of Economy
would work and by presenting both Ellen's article and this essay from
nakedcapitalism, I will be easily able to do that, so many thanks.
Note: There is much truth in this article; little real magic in lending,
I'm a civil engineer, and yes, almost all government infrastructure projects use private contractors to build them. But they are just construction contracts - not ownership and operation.
I guess part of my idea for 3P is to have the option of private idea input, that if approved, could generate extra income for the private sector.
You mean like this?
I have seen it in action on some bridges in my area - the workmanship is medeocre with incompetent (or overly micro-managed if they are competent) subcontractors doing the work, causing disruptive delays if even minor changed foundation conditions or other complications are encountered. The bridges will almost certainly be in bad shape when they are turned back over to the state in 28 years - the profit motive of "Plenary Walsh Keystone Partners" guarantees that.