Tag Archives: infrastructure

Newt Gingrich is not a serious candidate

When this whole presidential hoopla started, more than a year ago, I was surprised when Newt Gingrich announced that he was running for president. I figured that his time had passed. He had been out of Washington for more than a decade, during which time he started multiple enterprises. All of his enterprises seem to be tied into his former political life as a US Congressman and Speaker of the House. Upon further reflection, all of these enterprises seem to require rich businessmen handing money over to Newt Gingrich, because, and this is important, he still had access to power. These enterprises seem to require that Newt Gingrich is still important in Washington. Therefore, I concluded that he really wasn’t running for president, but was running so that he could prove to his benefactors that he was still extremely important person.

Over the first several months of his campaign, my theory held up. He never really spent money on infrastructure or campaign personnel. Instead, Newt Gingrich seemed to go from city to city selling books. He had a lot of early upheaval with turnover in his extremely small campaign staff, but this did not seem to faze him. Then, somewhere in Iowa, it seemed that he began to believe the press. It seemed that he was beginning to become serious about running for president. In South Carolina, his stop seemed to be more about campaigning and less about selling books or any of his other products. Newt Gingrich was serious.

Now, Newt Gingrich was a front runner. I don’t know whether he lost his mojo or whether he did not know what to do with his front-runner status, but Newt Gingrich seemed to lose focus. He is in the middle of a knock-down, drag-out fight with Mitt Romney. He needed to sharpen his message. How is he going to improve the country? How is he a better Republican candidate then Mitt Romney? How could he turn the economy around? Can someone explain to me how a “major” Republican candidate in the middle of a tight primary can even suggest America going to the moon? He said it with a straight face. Did he just say this to please a Florida space crowd? Did he think through this lunar colony?

I think that this is yet another example of how Newt is not a serious candidate. This isn’t the 1970s, where the sky was the limit. Our economy is struggling to make jobs. Europe is on the brink of implosion as Greek debt seems to be an unsolvable problem. Yet, Newt is talking about spending billions of dollars not just to go to the moon but to build a colony. Wow. I can’t wrap my mind around how irresponsible a statement that was.

Infrastructure Spending

Ronald Reagan supported infrastructure spending. Do you think the GOP cares? I don’t. They only care about defeating Barack Obama. They don’t care about anything else… except lining their own pockets.

Reagan said:

So, what we’re proposing is to add the equivalent of five cents per gallon to the existing Federal highway user fee, the gas tax. That hasn’t been increased for the last 23 years. The cost to the average motorist will be small, but the benefit to our transportation system will be immense. The program will also stimulate 170,000 jobs, not in make-work projects but in real, worthwhile work in the hard-hit construction industries, and an additional 150,000 jobs in related industries. It will improve safety on our highways and will make truck transportation more efficient and productive for years to come.

We need to fix our infrastructure

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As we look at how to get our economy back on track, we have to look at infrastructure spending. We have to figure out what is the best way to update our infrastructure. How do we do this in a cost-effective manner? How do we do this quickly? Which projects go first and which should wait? We need to rebuild bridges, roads and railroads. Our water and gas lines need to be rebuilt also. We simply cannot have year-old pipelines exploding.

From MSNBC:

A gas pipeline explosion shook residents in eastern Ohio a day after a house explosion in neighboring Pennsylvania took the lives of five residents and destroyed several homes in Allentown.

The explosion occurred about 10:30 p.m. A television station initially reported one house caught fire but Robert Newberry, a spokesman for El Paso Corp., which operates Tennessee Gas Pipeline, said there were no structural fires. One house was damaged, however, the company said. Newberry said only one nearby resident was evacuated. (more…)