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  • Stimulus Bridges to Nowhere

    President Barack Obama’s nearly $800 billion in deficit spending is just beginning to be spent and already stories are trickling in about how the money is being wasted. Remember that bridge to nowhere in Alaska? Well the Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel reports that Obama’s stimulus is funding 37 bridges just like it in Wisconsin alone:

    A vast majority of the Wisconsin bridges awarded construction money in the first wave of federal stimulus funding carry fewer than 1,000 vehicles a day, a Journal Sentinel analysis of federal bridge inspections shows. And many bridges carry significantly fewer than that. The 37 bridges average 568 vehicles a day.

    These mostly small, rural bridges will receive $15.8 million, while high priority larger bridges with daily traffic counts approaching 60,000 vehicles were ineligible for funding in the first round.

    The Journal Sentinel continues:

    The state hopes to put more than 13,000 people to work on new transportation projects, with a total of $529 million allocated to the construction program.

    But as we’ve pointed out before, infrastructure spending does not stimulate the economy or create jobs.

    Posted in Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

    11 Responses to Stimulus Bridges to Nowhere

    1. Jamey, Central Calif says:

      (SIGH) At some point, we need to clan up, stand back, and let them run off the cliff! What more can we do. Tell them before it happens and we're hateful and wrong. Point it out while it is implemented and we are protectionists. Now that we're plummeting down the drain, we haven't given it enough time to work. I for one do want to be pulled down with them.

    2. Franklin's Lock says:

      This epitomizes government waste and why the stimulus bill won’t be stimulating anything but government.


    3. Geoffrey, South Caro says:

      This is nothing but a socialist, massive government powergrab!

    4. Ozzy6900, CT says:

      Our Beloved Country is slipping away – fast! We are on the horizon of the United Socialist States of America!

    5. Cindy, Oklahoma City says:

      Small cars, $8/gallon gasoline, road trip with two kids, your spouse and a dog isn't going to be any fun. No one will be able to afford to use these useless projects once their built!

    6. Ken Denny, Palmer, A says:

      I have almost become ashamed to call myself an American anymore. I felt a need to appologize to my children for bringing this upon them and what they will have to bare throughout their lifetimes. I will say this, it has forced me to become more involved in politics; writing to congressional members, including those of other states, joining and actively participating in Tea Parties and other organizations and blogging whenever I can. Godspeed to us all…

    7. Susie, CA. says:

      Wow … this is so typical of government-run programs. Of course the bureaucrats want to spend money in the most ineffective way possible. Isn't that the new national mantra? That is how they keep their jobs, because when money goes down the drain, there is always a need for more. They look like generous benefactors … but with OUR money! Keep making calls to Congress, attending Tea Parties, calling the White House and never give up. We will succeed, no matter how long it takes.

    8. 4tner, Racine, WI says:

      This is the best we can find to spend the money on? We have some of the worst anti-business policies in this state and are increasingly losing jobs, including in my household (Between February 2008 and February 2009, Wisconsin lost nearly 90,000 non-farm jobs. About 40,000 manufacturing jobs were lost, as were about 37,000 jobs in the service sector, up to 8.8% unemployment, which is nearly 4% up from one year ago). Our state government is proposing to grow our state budget by 10%, while the private sector continues to suffer due to the fear of the implications of our legislatures support of cap and trade (creates extremely high tax increases to midwestern states), union card check, a new proposal that skyrockets the cost of auto insurance, and other proposed tax increases. Building these bridges may create a few temporary jobs, but once the money is gone we are right back to where we started, or worse. Our state motto was just changed to "Live Like You Mean It", but it really should be "TAX AND SPEND Like You Mean It". I hope we find employment elsewhere so we can "Move Like We Mean It"

    9. Jerome Zacny says:

      I must admit being surprised to learn that at least some of the stimulous money is being spent to repair some of our crumbling infrstructure. While the 13,000 people being put back to work in Wisconsin may only be temporary, I'll bet the families of those 13,000 people will be most greatful for the paychecks these jobs will bring.

      So what if a bridge handles only 500 or 600 vehicles a day? If it's not broken, don't fix it. But if a bridge is in disrepair, it should be fixed. I'm certain that if 15 or 20 people were killed crossing a bridge in disrepair, the public outrage would make front page news across the country, regardless of how little traffic it saw. The usual questions would scream for answers, "Whose to blame for not having those bridges kept in safe working order?" and "Why hasn't the city, county, state or Federal government done something about this before now?"

      I don't have a problem with stimulous dollars being spent to fix and repair dams, hydroelectric power plants, bridges and highways. This is infrastructure. If it needs repairing, repair it. If the bulk of the stimulus dollars were being spent in similar fashion, I wouldn't be nearly as angry as I am.

      The problem is that the vast majority of the stimulus dollars are being spent on the 8,500 pork barrel earmarks that do little or nothing to stimulate the economy. Furthermore, just handing money to people and telling them to spend it is foolish. But when the money given away belongs to someone else, it's worse than foolish, its criminal.

    10. Kevin, Addison,TX says:

      This is the reason I am glad the governor of Texas did not cave in and take stimulus money. If any good comes out of it, it will be short lived.

    11. will ND says:

      Repairing bridges is a good thing for transportation. However, I would bet that state and federal tax dollars that had been collected for this purpose have been wasted somewhere else. The bottom line Government has not shown wisdom in spending. This is just throwing money at problems rather than solutions. Government is the problem.

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