Nobel Prize economist: Now is the time to spend on infrastructure

[via Streetsblog]

Nobel Prize winning economist and NY Times columnist Paul Krugman has given some powerful punditry to the recently launched “Build for America” campaign. In an Op Ed piece published last week, he wrote:

“..right now, increased government spending is just what the doctor ordered, and concerns about the budget deficit should be put on hold.”

And here’s the part where he specifically calls out infrastructure spending:

“And this is also a good time to engage in some serious infrastructure spending, which the country badly needs in any case. The usual argument against public works as economic stimulus is that they take too long: by the time you get around to repairing that bridge and upgrading that rail line, the slump is over and the stimulus isnít needed. Well, that argument has no force now, since the chances that this slump will be over anytime soon are virtually nil. So letís get those project rolling.”

It seems like the battle might turn into, not if we should spend money on our transportation infrastructure, but on what type of infrastructure we fund.

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)

Founder of BikePortland (in 2005). Father of three. North Portlander. Basketball lover. Car owner and driver. If you have questions or feedback about this site or my work, feel free to contact me at @jonathan_maus on Twitter, via email at, or phone/text at 503-706-8804. Also, if you read and appreciate this site, please become a supporter.

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Matthew Denton
Matthew Denton
15 years ago

Yes, I can easily see this as suddenly being justification for the CRC. People will no longer say that it is “too expensive” but “just what our economy needs.”

My only hope is that the CRC will get delayed enough between the EIS and going out to bid and everything else that it will be too late to be “just what our economy needs” and instead we’ll have to use the money to fill potholes and put in sidewalks and “little” things like that…