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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 2/13/14

President Obama, Restore the WPA and Get People Back to Work

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Message Dave Lefcourt
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Colorado State Capitol Annex Building and Boiler Plant
Colorado State Capitol Annex Building and Boiler Plant
(Image by Jeffrey Beall)
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Colorado State Capitol Annex and Boiler Plant

A WPA project in 1939

For some time now I've considered overturning the Supreme Court's ruling in "Citizens United",   which all but legally sanctified big moneyed interests control of the electoral process as well as the all important political agenda, as our most pressing need with all other significant issues and problems dependent on this fix BEFORE those issues could begin to be dealt with and rectified.

However, I've come to realize something else is of even greater importance.

And that something is the re-establishment of a massive, nationwide public works effort, a new WPA if you will, (Works Project Administration) that puts people back to work.

Our massive unemployment and under-employment are a national disgrace and getting people back to work is priority one.

Much of the nation's infrastructure, roads, bridges, urban water and sewer systems, levees and the like are in serious disrepair or crumbling, our mass transit limited and the nationwide railway system inadequate and unable to accommodate modern high speed trains now operating in many other 1 st world countries.

We have the financial resources to upgrade the essential public infrastructure and the manpower available to do the job. Add in people working full time, earning commensurate wages with benefits and paying taxes it creates a stronger economy that also brings ancillary benefits to the community in the form of new business and development.

The only impediment is the political will to make it happen. That's been sorely lacking in a fractured and moribund Congress and the timidity of an executive who has shown an inability to use the bully pulpit to press the envelope and get the country back to full employment.

Full employment is certainly not going to be accomplished by the big corporate private sector that has decimated the manufacturing base and moved and outsourced jobs to 3 rd world countries.

And lets be clear, a massive public works project is not welfare or a competitor to private enterprise. Existing small business enterprises could and should be contracted as part of the effort.

Of course there'll be resistance to the idea coming from the large corporate sector, their sycophants on the Congressional far right, the Ayn Rand "Objectivists" as well as some talking head blowhards, faux news and Rush Limbaugh.

But this resistance can be overcome.

Most people would likely support an idea that could restore full employment as a benefit to the economic well being of the country.

Let's face it; the $152 billion economic stimulus package enacted in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis that precipitated the great recession was totally inadequate to restoring lost jobs and bringing full employment.

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