Friday, September 16, 2005

Gulf reconstruction contracts awarded

I just listened to a Marketplace piece telling how many, many gulf reconstruction projects have already been awarded -- to firms who have been in Washington lobbying to get them. And many of the firms have ties to Bush through campaign contributions. Well, (imagine the sarcasm dripping here) isn't that a good idea.

And how exactly is the area to recover the economy is not revived? What an opportunity to revive the economy and fight poverty (mainly throughout the suspect trickle down effect, but in New Orleans, anything would help) through awarding contracts to local firms who pay local and state taxes, who hire local professionals and workers, who live and shop in the area. But no. Instead the contracts are awarded in a no bid process, before gulf companies even have their feet back under them. And the people and companies benefiting from these contracts will not be living in the area, but instead will be spending their new income elsewhere. Describing it as the last nail in the coffin is the wrong imagery. It's more like walking away from the body of a person who perished unnoticed, without any effort being made to save them, and stepping on them on the way out to reach the jewelry hanging in a tree, put there by the flood.

My only hope is that it will change the political course of this country toward a more progressive model where we take care of all Americans and maybe even others, too.

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