the badly needed New York-New Jersey Gateway rail project designed to keep Amtrak, New Jersey Transit and the whole Boston-Washington rail corridor from suffering a catastrophic collapse.
.. when it comes to comparing what they send to Washington with what comes back, New Jersey, Connecticut, New York and Massachusetts are the four biggest losers
.. New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, like me, is linking farmer handouts with the lack of Gateway funding
.. If farmers support politicians who don’t want to help pay for mass transit infrastructure in my part of the country, it’s hard to see why I should pay for the damage farmers have suffered because the guy they helped elect has caused them problems that they could have protected themselves against.
.. Farmers could have sold their crops forward; they could have hedged in the futures market; they could have done any number of things. But they didn’t. And now, they’re lining up for a handout.
.. Pre-Trump, I would have been happy to help make them whole. (Though pre-Trump, they wouldn’t need help.) Now, I would like to get something in return for helping them.
.. If politicians from Trump enclaves decide to help fund the Gateway project that is vital to my part of the country (and to the country as a whole) and let me start deducting real estate and state income taxes again, I’ll be happy about helping farmers and blue-collar people in Trumpland.
I would much rather be part of a unified country than a member of a warring faction. I hope you feel this way, too.
At 100 days, Trump’s big talk on the economy lacks substance
When you look at what Donald Trump has actually accomplished in the first 100 days of his presidency when it comes to adding American jobs, stimulating the economy and fixing the tax system, a four-word phrase comes to mind: big hat, no cattle.
.. Meanwhile, several of Trump’s big economic promises — eliminating the Import-Export Bank because it supposedly promotes crony capitalism, labeling China a currency manipulator, quickly unveiling a trillion-dollar infrastructure program — have not been fulfilled. He excoriated the Federal Reserve’s low-interest-rate regimen during the campaign, but now he likes it... As someone who’s written about Trump on and off since the 1980s, I am surprised by none of this. He’s always been great at talking but not so great at doing. He routinely boasted about his New Jersey casinos — but they ultimately went through five Chapter 11 bankruptcies under his leadership. He touted his purchase of New York City’s Plaza Hotel, which also went into bankruptcy. He routinely exaggerated the floor count in some of his high-rise buildings... most, if not all, of U.S. hiring and expansion plans for which Trump has claimed credit were already in the works or had nothing to do with him... Meanwhile, thousands of cashiers, the second-largest job category according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, are disappearing without Trump doing or saying a thing about it that I can see... Obamacare added millions of new patients to health-care rolls without expanding the supply of doctors and nurses to keep pace with an expanded patient population. That’s a problem, too... I saw a proposed tax cut on high-income people who are paying tax surcharges to help lower-income people get Obamacare coverage. Those cuts and cuts in other Obamacare-related taxes would have been paid for by trimming subsidies and benefits to Obamacare recipients and, according to the Congressional Budget Office, leaving 24 million people without health insurance... 89 percent of households pay more Social Security and Medicare tax than federal income tax