Remember those shovel-ready projects that weren’t quite shovel ready? ob

To clear my head, I am prone to take walks in my neighborhood which provides me with the unparalleled opportunity to check our the landscaping and the surrounding streets. So I was surprised to find out that my residential street will be temporarily closed while they grind down the surface and then repave with “Coldmill and Asphalt Hot Mix” in high-traffic areas and a “standard asphalt mix in cul de sac areas.”

While roadways degrade over time, especially those in high traffic areas, I saw no obvious signs of road deterioration. So I asked one of the workers what was going on. His reply is the reason for this blog.

First, he assured me that the funds for the repave did not come out of the city’s funds and that the work was part of a state and federal funding program.  As if I did not also pay state and federal taxes.

Second, he told me if the funds were not used, they would be gone forever and there was no telling when such funding might become available again.

And third, and perhaps most troubling, if those funds were not fully used, the next funds allocation was likely to be reduced. Something that made absolutely no sense as I would assume that road conditions would determine the necessity for fund allocations, not some formula based on previous funds allocations.

Pretty much the reason why our cities, counties, states, and the federal government is deep in debt. It is incumbent on the politicians to keep unionized workers working and making benefit and healthcare payments to the union leadership lest they be denied union campaign funds and voter support in the next election cycle.

The fact that budgeted funds must be fully spent – whether on critical infrastructure that is in serious need of repair or replacement, or make-work projects, seems to be the government’s modus operandi at all levels.

Bottom line …

Until we can remove unionized personnel, political corruption, and make-work projects out of our budgets, we are doomed to an upward spiral of costs and a downward spiral of critical infrastructure.

Here in California, Governor Jerry Brown is pushing his “crazy train,” a not-so high-speed rail project that goes nowhere important, but sucks up nearly a trillion dollars over its lifetime – with much of that going to the special interests, consultants, and union-connected projects. The train will never pay for itself and is mostly part of the progressive socialist democrat pipe dream of forcing people out of their cars and into high-rises locate near their workplace – in the best tradition of Mother Russia.

Heaven forbid we should use this money to improve our critical water facilities that are crumbling with old age – many of which cross major fault lines – or repair our aging and inadequate electricity grid. Or, alternatively, build-out municipal broadband facilities that can be leased to communications providers and which will lower content delivery costs.

Time to keep a sharp eye on our corrupt politicians and their special interests. And, the best way to eliminate government waste, fraud and abuse is to remove the progressive socialist democrats like Governor Jerry Brown and replace them with moderate conservatives like Neel Kashkari. Kashkari, who is a minority, a man who voted for Obama, and presided over the Trouble Asset Relief Program (TARP) is a fiscal conservative and has promised to kill Jerry Brown’s crazy train. Good enough for me.

-- steve

“Nullius in verba”-- take nobody's word for it!
"Acta non verba" -- actions not words

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS