Delaney tries to tackle crumbling infrastructure

When it comes to corporate tax breaks one ordinarily thinks Republican and one would ordinarily be correct in doing so.

However, what if the corporate tax break was not part of the usual “trickle down economics” substanceless rhetoric but was actually applied directly to a specific undertaking that clearly benefited a particular community or communities?

That brings us to Democrat Congressman John Delaney of Maryland's 6th Congressional District.

Congressman Delaney has offered a plan to use corporate tax breaks in a manner that funds infrastructure development.

Congressman Delaney has stated that his plan “could create upwards of ten million construction, manufacturing and service jobs in ten years while also addressing some $3 trillion in infrastructure needs across the nation.”

According to Congressman Delaney, “rebuilding America’s infrastructure should be one of our top domestic priorities. Smart infrastructure investment is a triple bottom line for the country: 1) it boosts economic growth 2) creates good-paying jobs and 3) improves our quality of life."

Congressman Delaney has led the effort in the House to upgrade our roads, bridges, transit and water systems, airports and energy grid.

Few of us will dispute that locally, the need is great since I-81, I-270 and Metro all need major upgrades and improvements.

The Congressman is clear that “our aging infrastructure is a daily drain on the productivity of Marylanders, who are spending too much time commuting.”

After working on this issue for over four years, Congressman Delaney is convinced that the only way we can tackle this problem is to pair international tax reform with infrastructure.

This, he claims, addresses the single biggest obstacle – funding – while also solving a major problem in our tax code.

The Congressman further points out that “an estimated $2 trillion of U.S. corporate cash is overseas and companies do not repatriate their earnings back to the U.S.; they keep their profits abroad”.This, he makes clear, is “bad for the economy because it blocks economic activity here and it’s also bad for public services and our fiscal health, because its tax revenue that we don’t collect. This also encourages companies to invert and to move operations abroad."

Whether you are a conservative, a progressive or somewhere in the middle, you this is a concern.

The essence of the Congressman's plan is to lower the international tax rate but, most importantly, to direct some of that newly collected tax revenue to fund infrastructure development.

The critical element of the Congressman's plan is the creation of the American Infrastructure Fund which would be funded by this tax revenue from the collection of the corporate taxes we are not currently collecting.

This revenue would provide financing to state and local projects and, in so doing, encourage the expansion of public-private partnerships.

The expansion of public-private partnerships is critical to the plan's success because, as the Congressman continually points out, overly relying on private capital, as the Trump infrastructure plan does, “will prove to be insufficient an inadequate.”

“It’s a triple bottom line for our country” according to the Congressman: “a better tax code, more domestic investment and the jobs and growth created by more infrastructure investment.”

The Congressman's plan has received bipartisan support with over 40 Democrats and 40 Republicans cosponsoring the proposed infrastructure legislation over the last several years.

The issue now is whether having a Republican controlled Congress and a Republican White House will open up a door that might actually enable Congressman Delaney to make his vision on infrastructure development attractive to those in power since it includes both infrastructure development and tax incentives?

With a Republican controlled federal government and a plutocrat in the White House, corporate tax breaks will be a top priority. Finding a way to ensure that these tax incentives result in tangible benefits to the rest of us should be a requirement for any tax incentives and Congressman Delaney's vision seems to incorporate that concept.

In the post 2008 recession our economy can no longer tolerate “trickle down” concepts without actual substance.

The extent to which Congressman Delaney's tax plan would achieve the goal of tying tax incentives to specific projects that benefit the general population is certainly subject to debate, but if he is able to gain some traction in the current political environment and achieve any progress in rebuilding our decaying infrastructure then hats off to him.


The president is right - and here's to you Lester Holt

DAJA h7W0AALnGdThe caller on the other end of the phone was adamant. “Have reporters lost their mojo?” She asked.
Before I could respond she explained all the reasons why reporters are taken advantage of by the current presidential administration, how and why reporters need to react and how she was “tired of watching you all take it all the time.”
She was also upset with reporters who “constantly tell me what to think,” and said the media are their own worst enemy.


Latest sports hall of fame inductees include Olympic swimmer Ledecky

Congratulations to the D.C. Sports Hall of Fame 2017 induction class that includes Bethesda native and Olympic swimmer Katie Ledecky along with Paul Tagliabue, Juan Dixon, Tom McMillen, Brenda Frese and former Washington Redskins defensive back and kick returner Mike Nelms.
Additionally, the class also included media celebrities Glenn Harris, Tony Kornheiser and Ron Weber who was a long-time Washington Capitals game announcer before he retired in 1997. These individuals were honored Sunday before the Washington Nationals-Atlanta Braves game at Nationals Park in Southeast D.C.


Okay . . . we’ll call it a draw - Spirit vs. Pride

1010 20170708 Spirit vs PrideOrlando’s Alex Morgan and The Spirit’s Estelle Johnson (24) match strides during Morgan's attack on goal getting off her shot. PHOTO BY DAVID WOLFE  BOYDS — The Washington Spirit took on the Orlando Pride this past Saturday in front of a home crowd of over 5200. At the end of the match, it was a draw, earning both teams one point in the league standings.
In the 10th minute of the match a penalty kick was awarded to the Pride. Brazilian soccer player Marta took the shot and put the Pride up 1-0 over the Spirit. Head coach Jim Gabarra said it was an “unearned penalty” that put the Pride up so early in the game.
For the next 10 minutes, the Spirit looked a bit flat. Marta went the other way and used the goal to energize herself. It was not very long, 10 minutes or so further into the match it all changed.


Nissan offers smaller crossover while Bentley bulks up

2017 Nissan Rogue Sport cropped for webThe 2017 Nissan Rogue Sport subcompact crossover emulates its more popular big brother, the Rogue, at a slightly lower price. COURTESY PHOTO  Nissan’s bestselling vehicle in the United States is the Rogue, a compact crossover whose top strengths include an extra-roomy interior at an affordable price. But for buyers who prefer something even smaller or less expensive, Nissan has introduced the new 2017 Rogue Sport — “Sport” meaning “small.”
The Rogue Sport is a renamed version of the Nissan Qashqai, an unpronounceable vehicle that’s nonetheless been wildly popular in Europe. With Europeans preferring smaller vehicles, Nissan never saw fit to sell our Rogue there, but the company is optimistic that there’s room for its American lineup to grow. The Rogue Sport slots in size between the larger Rogue and the even smaller, quirkier Juke.


Starve the funding and kill the health coverage

Aluminum Winged Caduceus Silver Spring MDHealthcare premiums are on the rise and that is problematic. Of course healthcare premiums have been on the rise for more than 50 years, well before the Affordable Care Act, a.k.a.Obamacare, but that fact does little to address the current problem of rising costs. Something clearly needs to be done.
What to do? What to do? What to do?


Let the punishment fit the plea

gavel2The majority of criminal cases that come to Court result in a plea agreement, rather than an actual trial. In Maryland it is not unusual for the prosecution and defense to agree on the parameters of the plea including potential punishment, and to ask the trial judge to agree to be bound by the terms of the agreement before sentencing. Maryland’s highest court recently addressed what happens when the sentence actually imposed is actually less severe than the minimum agreed to by the defense, in an opinion called Stephanie Smith v. State.
The Court of Appeals’ opinion indicates that the defendant was indicted for insurance fraud, and charged with theft in excess of $10,000. The defense attorney and prosecutor negotiated an agreement for the defendant to plead guilty, with an agreement that the defendant not be sentenced to more than 5 years of jail time with all that suspended except for a minimum of 30 to 90 days incarceration, followed by 5 years probation. The agreement was also that the defendant would pay restitution to the victim of over $47,000.


Self-driving cars and buying your next home

for sale sign outside houseTechnology has made homes more efficient and environmentally friendly, while also making them more comfortable.
Technology has made the business of real estate become increasingly easier through electronic communications and electronic signatures.
Technology has also made finding a home much easier too. It’s obvious that the real estate industry has been greatly impacted by technology, but will selfdriving car technology impact real estate?


The president finally makes sense

Fredo MichaelI finally get it.
All these months I could not understand why our president tried so hard to disrupt and destroy the investigation into Russian hacking of our elections. There are those who are convinced it is because the president was directly involved in collusion with the Russians.
Still others think the president is just a buffoon, but I’ve never bought into that theory – he has some innate intelligence and survival instincts or he wouldn’t be able to thrive in the cutthroat world in which he’s cruised all these years.


Chevrolet adds some style while Lexus tries to save gas

Chevrolet Malibu cropped for webThe latest Chevrolet Malibu midsize sedan is an appealing blend of style, luxury, functionality and value. COURTESY PHOTO  The last generation of the Chevrolet Malibu midsize sedan, sold from the 2013 through 2015 model years, offered an odd mix of strengths and weaknesses.
On the one hand, the old Malibu offered impressive driving dynamics – a particularly solid feel that lent composure to its ride and handling, leaving a Toyota Camry or Hyundai Sonata feeling flimsy in comparison. But this luxurious ambiance was undercut by humdrum styling inside and out, and the old Malibu also suffered from skimpy rear-seat room.
Chevrolet fully redesigned the Malibu last year to address these issues, and transformed the car into a more thoroughly impressive car. Priced from $22,555, it brings a more thoroughly premium feel to the mainstream class, while also improving on important family-car values. The current Malibu regains the mojo of the 2008 to 2012 Malibu, yet it sacrifices less outward visibility and rear headroom to make a styling statement. And although sticker prices can be high, pricing site projects ample room for haggling that can turn this Chevrolet into a relative bargain despite its premium feel.