Democrats and Republicans agree!

This morning I learned two things.

CBS Sunday Morning (May 27) reported that our interstate highways are badly in need of repair. FDR and Ike created an infrastructure that provides enormous economic benefits. Unfortunately for both businesses and customers, it has been poorly maintained since the early 1990s, the last time the federal gas tax was increased.

Second, an Asheville Citizen-Times (AC-T, May 27, p. A1) article described the city council’s process for selling the land across from the U.S. Cellular Center and St. Lawrence Basilica — an historic landmark and city treasure.  A hotel developer wants to purchase the land and so does the Diocese of Charlotte.  The first wants to build a 3-story hotel and public plaza.  The second wants to better preserve the view of the Basilica with a plaza and smaller building. The article described the complexity of the decision — explaining a timeline and a 2008 agreement with the hotel developer.

Continue reading →

Tim Noah’s Crap

I will make it short because I already blogged about this at:

Below is the link for Tim Noah’s CBS Sunday Morning video on “The Great Divergence.” This is the term Paul Krugman gave to the period between 1980 and 2005, when 80% of income growth went to the wealthiest 1% of Americans.

Tim Noah’s Crap — Democrats don’t talk about “The Great Divergence” because they don’t want to “sound like left-wing class warriors.”

Cut the Crap — Democrats don’t talk about “The Great Divergence” because the wealthiest segment of the population funds the campaigns of Republicans and Democrats.

If you don’t like my cynicism, Fareed Zakaria provided this description of American politics in TIME magazine (November 1, 2010, p. 35):

The American tax code is a monstrosity, cumbersome and inefficient. It is 16,000 pages long and riddled with exemptions and loopholes, specific favors to special interests. As such, it represents the deep, institutionalized corruption at the heart of the American political process, in which it is now considered routine to buy a member of Congress’s support for a particular, narrow provision that will be advantageous for your business.

Five years from now Barack Obama will write a book about why we could not have “Change We Can Believe In.” By that time it may be too late. The Supreme Court may have already sealed our fate.