Archive for August 2nd, 2007

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The Cost Of “Infrastructure” Vs. War

August 2, 2007

As a resident of the greater Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area, I’ll no doubt be personally affected by the tragic collapse of the I-35W bridge.  This was considered one of the most heavily trafficked bridges in the entire state.  I’ve been glued to the TV all day watching all the latest developments.  One subject that keeps getting touched on is the status of bridges all across the country, most notably the alarming number of those that are categorized as “structurally deficient”.  It got me thinking.  Why aren’t we spending money on this?  Is it the cost? 

I decided to do a little research to get some perspective on what kinds of costs we’re talking about here. I started to look for bridges specifically, and I found one. A BIG one:

donghai  bridge

This is the Donghai Bridge in China. According to wiki, it is the longest cross-sea bridge in the world (20.2 mi.). It opened in 2005 and cost a cool $1.2 billion to build.

On the other hand, maybe we don’t have to worry about building new bridges as much as simply fixing and maintaining the ones that are already there.  According to the American Society of Civil Engineers, we would have to spend $9.4 billion a year for the next 20 years to take care of these bridges.  Lots of dough (a total of $188 billion without considering inflation).

In contrast, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are costing about $12 billion a month. This means that we’re spending the equivalent cost of one of the largest bridges in the world every 3 days.  Or, looked at another way, the cost of the aforementioned repairs over 20 years is roughly the cost of a little over one year in Iraq alone.

Ain’t it somethin’?

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Thursday Afternoon Cat Fight

August 2, 2007

This post is dedicated to Chamber reader and fellow LGF member DesertSage, who seems to think that my site is too negative. So, I’m posting this video in a desperate attempt to make the guy laugh. I hope it works.

B.J. vs. Cognac

Place yer bets!

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Bring Me Some Propagandists!

August 2, 2007

Since King George is obviously unable to articulate his thoughts to the American people directly, he’s decided to..um….well…I’ll let Hugh Hewitt explain:

President Bush invited ten talk hosts into the Oval Office for an hour of conversation today –Glenn Beck, Bill Bennett, Neal Boortz, Scott Hennon, Laura Ingraham, Lars Larson, Mark Levin, Michael Medved, Janet Parshall and me. This was an off-the-record conversation, and so I won’t be quoting the president.

What, no Michael Savage?  Oh I forgot, he rips Bush quite a bit these days.  Well, that, and he’s crazy.  Hannity, on the other hand, must have been inconsolable.  Good to see that Mark “Cheney is the Rock of Gibraltar” Levin was summoned though. 

Interestingly, Hewitt titles this post “A Wartime President”, which seems to be a bold attempt to apply some majestic status to this guy.  You know, “Wartime President”.  Think Abe Lincoln.  Except Lincoln managed to deliver the Gettysburg address himself.   Bush managed to invade a country and mangle the mission along with the rhetoric justifying it so badly that if you asked 10 different Americans what we’re doing there you’ll get 10 different answers.

So what does Bush do? 

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“The Great Caesar has a plan for victory!”

Update:  Carpetbagger reminds us that this isn’t the first pundit pow-wow for Bush. 

Update:  LGM details some of the glowing Bush-inspired propaganda that’s already beginning to flow, along with a group photo!