Granted for Takin’!

From Singapore (October 20, 2010) – “Sinking global trade pulls down box traffic”

“The decline in global trade due to the tight money situation in the West has adversely impacted container volumes at the world’s Top Nine ports.

“Cargo throughput at these ports fell by 6 per cent in September compared to August, Alphaliner reports.

“Shanghai, Singapore, Hong Kong and six other leading container ports reported a drop in volume after reaching this year’s peak in August …

“Analysts estimate the industry, which is closely linked to global economic growth, lost as much as $ 15 billion in 2009 since container traffic tumbled by nearly 10 per cent.” –

It would appear, then, that if container traffic is dwindling – and container traffic, as is commonly known, is the source of most everything that satisfies the demands of U.S. buyers – we can safely conclude that U.S. buyers are demanding less and less from overseas manufacturers. And if that’s the case, it follows that our nation’s rails and roads are seeing a reduction in traffic.

But no matter, here’s what we got from Washington, DC. last Friday:

“The U.S. Department of Transportation announced $ 600 million in funds through the National Infrastructure Investment Program, dubbed TIGER II by the Department, which was enacted as part of the 2010 Transportation Appropriations legislation …

“The program was broken into two components, capital grants and planning projects. Overall, from both capital and planning grants, projects with a strong freight component received $ 316 million, or 53 percent of the $ 600 million in available funds … Among the freight projects that received funding are:
– $ 34 mil for the South Park Bridge Replacement in Seattle, Wash;
– $ 22.7 mil for the Port of Miami Access project in Miami, Florida;
– $ 16 mil for the West Basin Railyard project at the Port of Los Angeles, Calif.;
– $ 16 mil to construct the MCR Railroad in South Dakota;
– $ 13 mil for the Port Cates Landing riverport project in Lake County, Tenn.;
– $ 10 mil for the West Vancouver Freight Access project at the Port of Vancouver; and,
– $ 10 mil for the San Bernardino Airport Access project in San Bernardino, Calif.”

But since when is a “grant” an “investment”?

[Can you say,”make work”? Of course you can. Can you say, “21st Century Civilian Conservation Corps.”? Sure thing. But can you say, “Multiplier effect”? Forget about it!]