Monday, August 17, 2009
Wonderful example of a "Bridge to Nowhere."
The term "bridge to nowhere" has become a metaphor for government waste. I have long said that a real bridge to nowhere was not wasteful at all, because if you build the bridge, "nowhere" becomes, "somewhere." (Build it and they will come!)
A more correct example of government waste would be to invest money on the building of the bridge, then stop halfway. That's waste!
This is exactly what is happening in this country when you look at what is going on with the health care issue.
Over the years the government has spent hundreds of billions, perhaps even trillions, on education. That investment--which is not even included on the government's books as an asset (and it would certainly be if it were a private company) has helped to raise the intellectual level of the nation's human capital--its people. Human beings are, by far, the most important capital that any nation posesses.
Yet after investing such huge sums we don't allow our government to maintain that capital--and that investment--by providing adequate and available health care to the citizens of the country.
We invest in the maintenence of infrastructure and other physical capital, but not human beings? Doesn't make sense, because without humans, there is no innovation, no wealth creation and no society! No machine, road, bridge or even computer can do that.
If it makes sense for the government to sustain the physical capital then doesn't it make sense for the gov't to sustain the human capital as well? A real "bridge to nowhere" is spending billions on educating people then letting them expire due to lack of adequate health care. You've just lost your investment for no good reason.