[LMB] OT: Transportation and others

Ed Burkhead ed at edburkhead.com
Sun Sep 7 19:24:54 BST 2008

Anton wrote:
> Some have found it a bit odd that the Interstate Highways, 
> which were rationalized as for Defense (because there was 
> no constitutional authority for Federal funding of general-
> purpose roads), all run through cities and thus would be 
> hopelessly congested in case of any emergency requiring 
> quick military movements.

Alas, "some have found it a bit odd that . . . " for absolutely everything.

In fact, throughout World War I & II, lots of stuff needed to be moved cross
country by highways.  (Even in that era, the railroads couldn't move it
all.)  By my tiny town in Iowa, on the narrow two-lane road, there was a
sign commemorating that it was the "Highway of the Grand Army."

You've got a point that, in the case of a nuclear attack, the Interstate
Highways would be congested.

Earlier this week, in the case of a Hurricane attack, the Interstate
Highways near New Orleans were nearly jammed and occasionally were jammed.
Can you imagine trying to evacuate all those people WITHOUT the Interstate

In addition, I've read that every segment of the Interstate Highway system
has to have at least one segment, every so far, that's straight for a
certain distance to be used as an emergency airport for our military

I think that the national defense function of the Interstate Highways is
fully justified.

It is kind of too bad that they didn't follow through and build the planned
fallout shelters under all the overpasses.  We have diddly-squat in the way
of shelters compared to the Russian's pretty good supply of them.  As
nuclear weapons continue to proliferate, we may find that we really did have
a need for fallout shelters.


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