Not doing endorsements here, but it IS nice that someone who might be running for president may actually understand the importance of investing in our social infrastructure and stopping the policies that pander and pull bucks away from real needs toward those that simply get the policymakers reelected.
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who says he's not a candidate for president, chose electoral vote-rich California Saturday from which to deliver a scorching assessment of Washington for failing to keep up with the need for new airports, roads, water systems and bridges across America.
While China and other nations are investing heavily in ports and high-speed trains "Washington doesn't have a plan" to address crumbling U.S. infrastructure, Bloomberg said.
In remarks clearly aimed at a national audience, the mayor said politics trumps common sense in Congress, where pork-barrel spending takes priority. Inevitably, the economy will be strangled if goods and people can't move easily, he warned.
"In politics, winning elections and protecting a party majority is more important than solving problems. And so short-term pork invariably wins over long-term investments," the mayor said.
Washington "spends money to win votes and collect campaign cash no matter what the real needs are," Bloomberg added. "It's hurting our country."
Maybe living in NY has blinded him from seeing that it happens other places and with other policies, too. The thing is, as we finally are forced to make the investments, if other demands are rising at the same time, like the adjustments necessary to deal with an increasingly aging and retiring population, a warming planet, peak oil and scarce water, fill in the blank, even a growing economy won't have the funds for increases in education, health, and, yes, corrections sentencing. TECHNOCORRECTIONS and more traditional alternative sentencing will have to move forward, but their effectiveness and availability will rely on foresight and planning. Still not seeing that much in the election rhetoric, are we?