Friday, August 03, 2007

There is an answer for the 35W bridge. It ain't W.

AP reports:

"US President George W. Bush on Saturday will travel to Minneapolis, Minnesota to visit the site of the bridge that collapsed over the Mississippi river, the White House announced Thursday."

Great, I'm sure that's what the people of Minneapolis need, right now. I guess, though, there's nothing like a disaster to buck up a president's plummeting poll numbers. No fly over for W. this time around, get right in there and start emoting.

In a statement Bush said, "We in the federal government must respond and respond robustly to help the people there not only recover, but to make sure that lifeline of activity, that bridge, gets rebuilt as quickly as possible."

Yeah right, like he rebuilt New Orleans.

In any case, we all sort of knew deep down that our infrastructure was crumbling, there was that steam pipe blast just last week in NY to remind us, but it looks like things are even worse than we though tye were. Luckily, there's the American Society of Civil Engineers keeping an eye on the problem.

At their web site they write:

"With each passing day, aging and overburdened infrastructure threatens the economy and quality of life in every state, city and town in the nation. . . ASCE estimates that $1.6 trillion is needed over a five-year period to bring the nation's infrastructure to a good condition. Establishing a long-term development and maintenance plan must become a national priority."

They announced in March of this year that Senators George V. Voinovich (R– Ohio), Thomas Carper (D – Del.), Hillary R. Clinton (D – N.Y.) and. Norm Coleman (R – Minn.) had introduced new to deal with our deteriorating infrastructure. The proposed legislation is called the National Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2007.

"The legislation, if enacted, would establish the National Commission on Infrastructure of the United States, marking a critical step in addressing the deteriorating conditions of the roads, drinking water systems, dams and other public works that support our nation's economy and quality of life." [ASCE]

Just in a nick of time I would say. Now, the question is whether W. is just going to go down to he bridge and mug for the cameras, or will he support this very sensible legislation?


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