U.S transport network stagnates as China’s improves

AFL-CIO President Trumka: China’s Transportation Network Improved, U.S.’s Stagnated

February 14, 2014 • 10:06AM

AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka testified before the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Wednesday, on the “amazing” advances that China has made in its transportation infrastructure, while the U.S. has fallen far behind. Though nominally the subject was “reauthorization of the transportation spending bill,” which Trumka called “the most important jobs legislation Congress considers on an ongoing basis,” Trumka spent much of his testimony describing China’s progress, and his amazement at it, which threw the U.S.’s decay into sharp relief.

Trumka said that when he testified for reauthorization three years ago, he had never been to China. “Well, now I have been there and I was stunned at the speed at which our largest competitor is progressing.

“China has been investing heavily in its infrastructure and the results are dramatic. During my trip to Shanghai, I visited the Yangshan Deep Water port, which is one of the world’s largest and busiest container shipping ports. The port, like the high-speed trains that took me quickly and efficiently between China’s cities, is one of the country’s large infrastructure projects and a key part of the government’s effort to keep up with the country’s growth of exports.

“To get to and from the port, I traveled on a six-lane bridge that was 20 miles long — one of the world’s longest bridges, connecting Shanghai to the islands where the port is located. The bridge was completed in two and a half years and employed close to 6,000 workers. Piror to the project, nothing was there but a sleepy fishing village with some islands off in the distance — no major roads, no bridges, and no harbor. China opened the first phase of the project in 2004, aiming to build the world’s largest port and export center—and by 2013 they had accomplished their goal.”

Citing statistics about the economic loss caused by lack of transportation infrastructure in the U.S., Trumka, omitting the Glass-Steagall solution which the AFL-CIO nationally endorsed, reverted to naming as possible solutions a higher gas tax, transfer funding from general revenue, PPPs, or some combination of these.

It is Obama who has blocked Glass-Steagall, and the solution is impeachment.

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