According to an article in today’s Washington Post:
WASHINGTON — More than 70,000 bridges across the country are rated structurally deficient like the span that collapsed in Minneapolis, and engineers estimate repairing them all would take at least a generation and cost more than $188 billion.
This is the kind of disaster that just doesn’t happen in the United States–a bridge spontaneously collapsing, apparently, into a river. It is hard to convey to those who don’t live here the astonishment of this sort of catastrophe happening on our most traveled highway.
No, this kind of thing never happens in America. Ever! But if it did, it would be the fault of the Democrats (if you wondered what all those dementors are going to be doing now that their services are no longer required at Azkaban, it looks like some of them have landed work writing press releases at the White House). But hey, at least we can count on our leader in a time of crisis not to politicize a tragedy for political gain. So we got that going for us.
Where was I before I digressed? Ah, right – this never happens in America. Well, almost never:
- The Mianus River Bridge on Interstate 95 in Greenwich, Connecticut.
- I-90 bridge over the Schoharie Creek in New York.
- I-88 over Carr’s Creek in New York.
- I-787 ramp partial collapse in downtown Albany.
- The Silver Bridge connecting West Virginia and Ohio.
- And while this was a bridge under construction instead of an older one, the irony of this week’s collapse in California (reported by FAUX, even) makes for good irony.
Let’s see, any other interesting items in the “crumbling infrastructure” file? Well, there was that little steampipe thingie a few weeks ago, but that was only 83 years old.
Anyway, $188B – that’s a lot of money. Taxpayer money. And we simply can’t afford that kind of reckless spending. Errr, hold on, we just found this:
One thing is certain about the Iraq war: It has cost a lot more than advertised. In fact, the tab grows by at least $200 million each and every day.
So, according to my calculator, what we’re spending in Iraq would pay for all those bridges by around Christmastime, 2009.