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Fri Dec 6, 2019, 03:03 AM

The Role of Public Capital

There is an obvious reason why the New Deal is the model for the immense changes we need to address global climate change. The New Deal, and our response to the war that followed, were the only times in American history that we moved so fast, and so well.

In less than ten years, the New Deal transformed the United States from an immensely energetic but ramshackle and barely connected gaggle of regions into what would soon emerge as the wealthiest, most powerful nation the world had ever known, and the champion of freedom around the globe.

Most obviously, the New Deal succeeded in physically remaking the country. We all know the different litanies of public infrastructure built: the nearly 5,900 school buildings, the 325 new firehouses, the 400 post offices and nearly 400 airports; the 212 dams and canals, the 894 sewage plants, the 29,000 units of public housing, the 78,000 new bridges, the 381,000 miles of power lines, the quarter-million miles of road—the list goes on and on. And there was the physical environment restored: the 2.3 billion trees planted, the billion fish restocked into waterways, the 2,400 plant and tree nurseries established, the thousands of square miles of soil reclaimed.

Yet the New Deal was a moral revolution as well. It remade how we did things in America, leaving us—all of us—with new rights and responsibilities. We—our democracy—was to be the steward of the land around us.

Read more: https://prospect.org/greennewdeal/role-of-public-capital-reconstruction-finance-corporation/
(American Prospect)

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