After the horrible bridge collapse in Minnesota and the revelation that over a quarter of America's bridges are in danger as well, who could possibly oppose more spending on road maintenance?
The Decider, that's who:
WASHINGTON (AP) -- A week after a deadly bridge collapse in Minneapolis, President Bush on Thursday dismissed raising the federal gasoline tax to repair bridges at least until Congress changes how it spends highway money.
"The way it seems to have worked is that each member on that (Transportation) committee gets to set his or her own priorities first," Bush said. "That's not the right way to prioritize the people's money. Before we raise taxes, which could affect economic growth, I would strongly urge the Congress to examine how they set priorities."
Oh, well, kee-rist, "priorities", eh?
We're spending $10 billion A MONTH in Iraq "to keep Americans safe", supposedly, from the threat of al-Qaeda. That's about what we'd need to spend a YEAR over the next 20 years to get all our bridges into shape, according to the American Society of Civil Engineers report I linked to at the top. I'd argue that infrastructure problems are a bit more of a real-world threat to American citizens than terrorism, but hell - "priorities".
Look, I don't make a hell of a lot of money. I have to buy gas just like anyone else, and I'm not crazy about the idea of being charged an extra fifty cents a gallon. But, as I've been told so many times over the years, as adults we do stuff that we don't necessarily like because we're responsible. We go to work every day, we eat our veggies, we say "please" and "thank you" to people we'd much rather throttle within an inch of their sorry lives, and we pay taxes so people we've never even met don't need to have a bridge collapse on top of them. But I'd wish our elected officials would frickin' grow up as well and keep up their end of the system.