Obama’s Weekly Address

A small portrait of the translator

December 9, 2008 @ 1:29 UTC

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Barack Obama
Economy & Trade, Media & Internet, Government & Politics

Obama used his weekly address to lay out the basics of a massive public works program which will seek to bolster the economy and simultaneously fix aging infrastructure:

Click here to view the embedded video.

Throughout the campaign Obama has discussed the need for renovating infrastructure and the need for investing in green technologies. The increasingly grim economic news lead to speculation that these necessary renovations would have to be delayed due to the bad economy. Obama seems to want to unite both concepts. Instead of only giving huge amounts of cash to companies that show dubious intention or ability to improve the economy with them, the government will use money to invest in real, physical improvements in the country. At the same time, the massive projects will require a large workforce to undertake them.

At this point unfortunately the matter is not whether government should intervene in the economy, but what way they will do it. No doubt this project will be met by cries of “socialism!”, but quite frankly, that train left when we handed uncounted billions to irresponsible financial institutions and hence provided privatized profit and socialized risk. Very few questions were asked then, nothing compared to the grilling that (also irresponsible) automakers are now being submitted to. Is the government spending money like a drunken sailor on massive projects reminiscent of socialism? Absolutely, but not spending has ceased to be an option and I’d rather see the money spent on things that I could touch, feel and benefit from than seeing it disappear into a money hole at AIG.

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