If Congress decides to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure, keep tabs on who gets it

The grades are in. The nation’s infrastructure is close to failing.

aging-infrastructureThe 2017 report card of the American Society of Civil Engineers, posted today, gives the infrastructure on which America depends for commerce, defense, recreation, flight, food, water, waste — almost everything — an overall grade of D+.

From the ASCE report:

The 2017 grades range from a B for Rail to a D- for Transit, illustrating the clear impact of investment – or lack thereof – on the grades. Three categories – Parks, Solid Waste, and Transit – received a decline in grade this year, while seven – Hazardous Waste, Inland Waterways, Levees, Ports, Rail, Schools, and Wastewater – saw slight improvements. Six categories’ grades remain unchanged from 2013 – Aviation, Bridges, Dams, Drinking Water, Energy, and Roads.

The areas of infrastructure that improved benefited from vocal leadership, thoughtful policymaking, and investments that garnered results.

Scholars & Rogues has long considered addressing the nation’s infrastructure needs essential for the nation’s economic, cultural, resource, and domestic security (see here, here, here, and here). Continue reading

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Quotabull

I feel like I’m going to get to the Oval Office and pick up the rug and say, ‘Oooh my goodness, look at the mess they’ve left!’

— Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, Oct. 9, criticizing President Bush in a stump speech in Maquoketa, Iowa.

It’ll never happen. They all want to take care of themselves and the people who are backing them with all that money. I think they’ve forgotten about us. They should throw a tent over Washington. The whole town is a circus.

— Jim Konrad, a retired Firestone worker and lifelong Democrat, listening at a barbershop in Indianola, Iowa, to each Democratic presidential candidate at their Dec. 13 debate rattle off a list of what they would accomplish in their first year as president.
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