Saturday, June 12, 2010

Spending Stimulus Funds On Mass Transportation


There are billions of stimulus dollars piled up waiting to be spent.  A pet project for most stimulus spenders is mass transportation.

They envision grand rail lines running 50 to 100 miles between depots congested with traffic and, when used, take passengers on a process lasting at least twice as long as simply driving from one point to another [not even considering how they get to their real destination having once arrived at a depot].
Now for a better idea that encompasses:
  • CO2
  • Illegal immigration
  • Diversity
  • Aid to the poor
  • Economic stimulation
It all begins with this vehicle....  This is a small 5-person vehicle with a huge amount of storage space [for people with luggage or large pets].  It is the Ford Transit.

This vehicle would be powered only by electricity.  That takes care of the CO2 emissions from the vehicle [1st dot point ... CO2].

A large fleet of these would be given to each city requesting them for use as free mass-transportation to anyone in the metropolitan area who would choose to use them.  While this may conflict with privately-owned taxi services, those services do not offer free rides to those who want or need them and, as such, do not deserve the support or sympathy of "progressives."

Drivers would be paid for by stimulus funds until such funds run out.  Priority of hiring will be:
  1. Illegal aliens from predominately Hispanic nations
  2. Pakistanis or Palestinians with ties to Al Qaeda
  3. Americans with felony convictions for violent crimes
  4. All other Americans seeking jobs
That addresses the 2nd point ... reforming illegal immigration.

In order to support various metropolitan groups and promote visibility while deterring theft, every vehicle will be painted this special color.  It will vary slightly from Mary Kay's special color to avoid confusion.

This addresses the 3rd point ... diversity ... and will be favorably received by "progressives."

These free-transportation vehicles will park at strategically located recharging stations that are within areas of decrepit or abandoned housing or near bridge underpasses in older industrial areas.  They will be equipped with porta-potties, sleeping bags, and coffee and donuts from the Interior Department or local police stations.  This addresses the 4th point ... new opportunities for the oppressed.

Best of all, these vehicles will enable those who cannot afford vehicles to get to anyplace within their metropolitan area [providing they can explain where they want to go to the driver].  This opens up many new opportunities for employment, getting to government offices to apply for global warming grants, discovering new neighborhoods with a higher density of laptop computers and flat-screen TVs, or simply locating new shopping centers... all of which address the 5th and most important point ... aid to everyone else and stimulation of the economy.

What could go wrong?



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CO2 Cap and Trade

There is always an easy solution to every human problem—neat, plausible, and wrong.
Henry Louis Mencken (1880–1956)
“The Divine Afflatus,” A Mencken Chrestomathy, chapter 25, p. 443 (1949)
... and one could add "not all human problems really are."
It was beautiful and simple, as truly great swindles are.
- O. Henry
... The Government is on course for an embarrassing showdown with the European Union, business groups and environmental charities after refusing to guarantee that billions of pounds of revenue it stands to earn from carbon-permit trading will be spent on combating climate change.
The Independent (UK)

Tracking Interest Rates

Tracking Interest Rates


SEARCH BLOG: FEDERAL RESERVE for full versions... or use the Blog Archive pulldown menu.

February 3, 2006
Go back to 1999-2000 and see what the Fed did. They are following the same pattern for 2005-06. If it ain't broke, the Fed will fix it... and good!
August 29, 2006 The Federal Reserve always acts on old information... and is the only cause of U.S. recessions.
December 5, 2006 Last spring I wrote about what I saw to be a sharp downturn in the economy in the "rustbelt" states, particularly Michigan.
March 28, 2007
The Federal Reserve sees no need to cut interest rates in the light of adverse recent economic data, Ben Bernanke said on Wednesday.
The Fed chairman said ”to date, the incoming data have supported the view that the current stance of policy is likely to foster sustainable economic growth and a gradual ebbing in core inflation”.

July 21, 2007 My guess is that if there is an interest rate change, a cut is more likely than an increase. The key variables to be watching at this point are real estate prices and the inventory of unsold homes.
August 11, 2007 I suspect that within 6 months the Federal Reserve will be forced to lower interest rates before housing becomes a black hole.
September 11, 2007 It only means that the overall process has flaws guaranteeing it will be slow in responding to changes in the economy... and tend to over-react as a result.
September 18, 2007 I think a 4% rate is really what is needed to turn the economy back on the right course. The rate may not get there, but more cuts will be needed with employment rates down and foreclosure rates up.
October 25, 2007 How long will it be before I will be able to write: "The Federal Reserve lowered its lending rate to 4% in response to the collapse of the U.S. housing market and massive numbers of foreclosures that threaten the banking and mortgage sectors."
"Should the elevated turbulence persist, it would increase the possibility of further tightening in financial conditions for households and businesses," he said.

"Uncertainties about the economic outlook are unusually high right now," he said. "These uncertainties require flexible and pragmatic policymaking -- nimble is the adjective I used a few weeks ago."

December 11, 2007 Somehow the Fed misses the obvious.
[Image from:]
December 13, 2007 [from The Christian Science Monitor]
"The odds of a recession are now above 50 percent," says Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's "We are right on the edge of a recession in part because of the Fed's reluctance to reduce interest rates more aggressively." [see my comments of September 11]
January 7, 2008 The real problem now is that consumers can't rescue the economy and manufacturing, which is already weakening, will continue to weaken. We've gutted the forces that could avoid a downturn. The question is not whether there will be a recession, but can it be dampened sufficiently so that it is very short.
January 11, 2008 This is death by a thousand cuts.
January 13, 2008 [N.Y. Times]
“The question is not whether we will have a recession, but how deep and prolonged it will be,” said David Rosenberg, the chief North American economist at Merrill Lynch. “Even if the Fed’s moves are going to work, it will not show up until the later part of 2008 or 2009.
January 17, 2008 A few days ago, Anna Schwartz, nonagenarian economist, implicated the Federal Reserve as the cause of the present lending crisis [from the Telegraph - UK]:
The high priestess of US monetarism - a revered figure at the Fed - says the central bank is itself the chief cause of the credit bubble, and now seems stunned as the consequences of its own actions engulf the financial system. "The new group at the Fed is not equal to the problem that faces it," she says, daring to utter a thought that fellow critics mostly utter sotto voce.
January 22, 2008 The cut has become infected and a limb is in danger. Ben Bernanke is panicking and the Fed has its emergency triage team cutting rates... this time by 3/4%. ...

What should the Federal Reserve do now? Step back... and don't be so anxious to raise rates at the first sign of economic improvement.
Individuals and businesses need stability in their financial cost structures so that they can plan effectively and keep their ships afloat. Wildly fluctuating rates... regardless of what the absolute levels are... create problems. Either too much spending or too much fear. It's just not that difficult to comprehend. Why has it been so difficult for the Fed?

About Me

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Michigan, United States
Air Force (SAC) captain 1968-72. Retired after 35 years of business and logistical planning, including running a small business. Two sons with advanced degrees; one with a business and pre-law degree. Beautiful wife who has put up with me for 4 decades. Education: B.A. (Sociology major; minors in philosopy, English literature, and German) M.S. Operations Management (like a mixture of an MBA with logistical planning)