Wednesday, June 18, 2008

I was sure the story was going to be about catastrophe insurance

When I saw this headline the other day:
Flooding in the Midwest may help bolster awareness of coastal issues, experts say

I didn't think about infrastructure repair, but Charlie Melancon makes a good point:
Catastrophic flooding and levee breaches in Iowa could help Louisiana make its case that the U.S. government needs to make serious investments in infrastructure, Congressman Charlie Melancon said at a forum on coastal insurance issues Monday.

It would probably be somewhat tasteless, if not altogether ghoulish, to campaign in Iowa on McCain's opposition to a national catastrophe fund. At least, it would be tasteless to raise the issue too soon. However, Iowa easily came in first in a National Journal Political Insiders Poll, conducted before the flooding, about which three Bush states are Obama's best pickup chances.

On the subject of infrastructure, I will remind readers that before we heard about levee breaches in the Midwest, we heard about a bridge in Minnesota -- a bridge that was one of 73,518 bridges nationwide. Before we heard about the nation's bridges, we heard about the nation's levees. You can also bet that half the cities in America are watching to see how much help New Orleans gets with its sewerage and water repairs. If the S&WB gets help fixing any problems that can't be blamed on Katina, they'll all have their hands out. Actually, it's a national problem and many cities will probably need federal help, no matter what the market worshippers say. It would be neither ghoulish nor tasteless to ask McCain how he thinks we can afford to make the Bush tax cuts permanent, and cut the corporate tax rate and increase the size of the military, all in light of nation's infrastructure needs.

Couldn't have said it truer myself. As New Orleans goes, so goes the rest of the nation. To which we may now add, as Iowa goes, so goes the rest of the nation.

First, though, we have to put a stop to the intolerant messages which mis-direct the nation's attention from the real problems. It isn't about bootstrap self-determination. It's about working together as American citizens, and American cities, to invest in the safety and prosperity of future generations instead of squandering our lives and treasure in the Iraq misadventure which is sending $500 million a day to China on the Bank of China credit card.

Flush Rush!
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