Biden Builds Government Back Bigger
Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders lost the Democratic presidential nomination, but you wouldn’t know from President Biden’s first two months in office. First came $1.9 trillion in social spending under the cover of Covid-19, and now comes $2.3 trillion more for climate and political spending dressed as “infrastructure.”
Most Americans think of infrastructure as roads, highways, bridges and other traditional public works. That’s why it polls well, and every President has supported more of it.
Yet this accounts for a mere $115 billion of Mr. Biden’s proposal. There’s another $25 billion for airports and $17 billion for ports and waterways that also fill a public purpose. The rest of the $620 billion earmarked for “transportation” are subsidies for green energy and payouts to unions for the jobs his climate regulation will kill. This is really a plan to build government back bigger than it has ever been.
The magnitude of spending is something to behold. There’s $85 billion for mass transit plus $80 billion for Amtrak, which is on top of the $70 billion that Congress appropriated for mass transit in three Covid spending bills. The money is essentially a bailout for unions, whose generous pay and benefits have captured funds meant for subway and rail repairs.
Mr. Biden also proposes to build “broadband infrastructure in unserved and underserved areas” by subsidizing government-owned and nonprofit networks. But the Trump Federal Communications Commission unleashed private broadband investment by liberating providers from Obama net neutrality rules, streamlining regulations and limiting how much cities could extort them to install 5G sites. In 2019 providers built over 46,000 cell sites, up from a mere 708 in 2016.
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