View Poll Results: Does strong infrastructure perpetuate economic growth

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  • Yes, economic growth is dependent on infrastructure investment

    28 84.85%
  • No, economic growth is NOT dependent on infrastructure investment

    3 9.09%
  • Unsure/other

    2 6.06%
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Thread: Does strong infrastructure perpetuate economic growth

  1. #21
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    Re: Does strong infrastructure perpetuate economic growth

    Quote Originally Posted by Aunt Spiker View Post
    A problem with looking to 'build more stuff' to spur job-growth is that such job-growth is temporary: in a few years they'll still need a job. And it's long-term costly: maintenance.

    If we can't maintain what we already have - then why add onto it?
    Giving people jobs in the short term will give the economy a swift kick in the pants to get it started again. More people with jobs = more people spending money = more demand = private sector expansion. Also, that long term maintenance also means long term jobs.
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    Re: Does strong infrastructure perpetuate economic growth

    Quote Originally Posted by atrasicarius View Post
    Giving people jobs in the short term will give the economy a swift kick in the pants to get it started again. More people with jobs = more people spending money = more demand = private sector expansion. Also, that long term maintenance also means long term jobs.
    The jobs have to be long term value added positions, not just bridges to nowhere, HSR to places where it won't be used and the like.
    If it isn't done wisely, it's a waste of resources, no matter the temporary stimulative effect.
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  3. #23
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    Re: Does strong infrastructure perpetuate economic growth

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Guerrilla View Post
    The jobs have to be long term value added positions, not just bridges to nowhere, HSR to places where it won't be used and the like.
    If it isn't done wisely, it's a waste of resources, no matter the temporary stimulative effect.
    Well sure, but HSR could be just as valuable as the interstate system if it was done right.
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    Re: Does strong infrastructure perpetuate economic growth

    As others have already pointed out HSR is a boondoggle. It only makes sense in very limited circumstances and we don't actually have any locations that meet those conditions. The ones that come close, like Boston-NYC-Philadelphia-Washington suffer from congested land and lack of transport corridors. The expropriation of land needed to make a HSR system viable would mean having to bear prohibitive costs. The time to have planned for this was 100 years ago with transportation corridors set aside when land was cheap and then development could have risen with a corridor in mind.

    On the general issue of infrastructure, oil pipelines from the Oil Sands to the Gulf Coast refineries are also vitally important. Maybe all good liberals interested in boosting economic development via robust infrastructure development should follow the President's lead and support such pipeline projects instead of pie-in-the-sky HSR developments.

    There must be a good academic paper in the topic of what it is that so tickles the liberal sensibility when it comes to HSR. Is it that there is something appealing about centralizing transportation, or is it that there is something distasteful about the current decentralized mode of transportation?

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    Re: Does strong infrastructure perpetuate economic growth

    Quote Originally Posted by RiverDad View Post
    There must be a good academic paper in the topic of what it is that so tickles the liberal sensibility when it comes to HSR. Is it that there is something appealing about centralizing transportation, or is it that there is something distasteful about the current decentralized mode of transportation?
    It's more efficient. Duh. Also, it doesn't necessarily rely on oil buried under other people's land.
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    Re: Does strong infrastructure perpetuate economic growth

    Infrastructure facilitates economic activity though it is not dependent.
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  7. #27
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    Re: Does strong infrastructure perpetuate economic growth

    Quote Originally Posted by SheWolf View Post

    What do you think?
    I picked other. I say it depends what that highly developed and costly infrastructure is and where it is placed. For example would a passenger rail system/subway benefit the city I live in that has nearly 400,000 people in it and be cost effective? No it wouldn't because most people in my city drive their own car. If it was a city where most people did not drive then a subway/passenger rail service would be beneficial and cost effective.
    Last edited by jamesrage; 09-11-11 at 08:26 PM.
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  8. #28
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    Re: Does strong infrastructure perpetuate economic growth

    Quote Originally Posted by Hatuey View Post
    The problem with a high speed rail system in the US is that we have 2 1/2 coasts where most of the wealth of the country is generated, and then a giant chunk in the middle that on average never goes more then 200 miles from its house. If a highway speed rail system were to be built, it'd necessarily have to exclude most of the geographic middle of the country. Otherwise we're looking at some very expensive lines that nobody uses. HSRs in Europe work because you can go in pretty much every direction and you'll hit a major commercial center every 100-150 miles.
    A lot of what you are saying could have very well been said about the trans siberian railway. Just like in Siberia, a lot of people may not necessarily live in the middle of the US compared to the coastal regions, but connecting the less densely populated areas of Russia has had affects.

    The Trans-Siberian Railway gave a positive boost to Siberian agriculture, facilitating substantial exports to central Russia and Europe. It influenced the territories it connected directly, as well as those connected to it by river transport. For instance, Altai Krai exported wheat to the railway via the Ob River.

    The Trans-Siberian line remains the most important transportation link within Russia; around 30% of Russian exports travel on the line. While it attracts many foreign tourists, it gets most of its use from domestic passengers.
    It's not necessary a line linking all areas of Siberia either. It's basically a line meant to connect east and west by ground. It's convenient for tourists, native people, and business enterprises. It's another option to rapidly transport people and goods, including getting exports and imports on opposite sides of the country.

    But supporting a HSR doesn't even have to start there. Despite the lower population in some states, some big cities like Denver or Dallas could benefit from a rail that served the city residents and laborers only, and didn't have to connect to a national line.
    Last edited by SheWolf; 09-11-11 at 08:27 PM.

  9. #29
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    Re: Does strong infrastructure perpetuate economic growth

    I think something that a lot of people are missing is that HSR isn't just about passengers. It can also be used to transport freight much more efficiently than by truck or airplane or diesel engine.
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  10. #30
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    Re: Does strong infrastructure perpetuate economic growth

    Quote Originally Posted by atrasicarius View Post
    Well sure, but HSR could be just as valuable as the interstate system if it was done right.
    The interstate system is largely beneficial for interstate commerce of goods.
    That's largely represented in what does the most road damage, OTR trucking and we already have a rail system for goods.

    HSR, with the exceptions of place like the North East corridor and maybe California, is wastefully dumb, the proposed lines outside of those areas serve no real purpose.
    Part of the primary problem with any mass transit systems is that the government takes money from road maintenance funds, to subsidize those systems.
    Causing what we have now, deficient road infrastructure.
    I was discovering that life just simply isn't fair and bask in the unsung glory of knowing that each obstacle overcome along the way only adds to the satisfaction in the end. Nothing great, after all, was ever accomplished by anyone sulking in his or her misery.
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