Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Can't Do Country

Steve Benen notes Senator John Thune dismissing the idea of infrastructure investments and it reminded me of a recent conversation I had concerning the willingness, or really, lack-thereof, of this country to do anything difficult anymore. About 3 weeks ago I had to take an impromptu road trip from my hometown of St. Louis back to Denver. Along the way I was telling my wife all of the nerdy facts about the interstate highway system that I have retained over the years and discussed the little bit  know about the history of the project. During the course of the conversation it became more and more apparent that a project like our Federal highway system just absolutely could not be undertaken in today's political climate. I'm not talking about the environmental efficacy of such a project but rather the enormous scope of the project. It would never happen - it's a socialist plot, investment is just a code for spending. State legislatures and governors would pass resolutions objecting to the project. Anti-immigration activists would be protesting.

Maybe some of this happened with Ike. I really don't know. But if it did happen we obviously overcame the opposition and I just don't think we can do that today. And that is damned depressing.

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