Wednesday, January 26, 2011

This and That

The Word Investment

All the hoopla today around the use of the word investment by the President in the SOTU is so interesting.  I get it that using this word in relation to taxation and government spending has become suspect.  However, it might just be helpful to refresh our collective knowledge about the definition of the word invest.  According to The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, the word, invest means:1-To commit (money or capital) in order to gain profit or interest...; 2-To spend or utilize (time, money or effort) for future advantage or benefit, often used with in”.  Underling added for emphasis.   

President Obama's call to shift oil subsidies to funding invention, development and production of the machinery, technology and substances of alternative and renewable energy sources is indeed investment. Make no mistake; the successful development of coal, natural gas and oil industries owes no small measure to the "investment" made by previous Presidents and previous Congresses dating back to their beginnings in this country.  Go ahead, look it all up, but don't let the voices trying to cast the President's use of the word investment as a thin ruse to simply increase government spending win the day. 

We have what we have today because our parents, grandparents, and great grandparents invested mightily in the development of all manner and sort of infrastructure and industry.  From the continental railway to the national highway system, from TVA to REA, from oil and gas pipelines to the production of steel, and many more, the way was made most possible by the commitment of tax revenue, spent for future gain and profit. 

I remember watching the landing on the moon in 1969 with my Swedish grandmother who was in her late 80's-old enough to remember Lindbergh's first flight.  I asked her if she found it amazing that we had sent men to the moon.  After a few moments she said, "No, what is amazing is that we can see it on the television."  Well we did it and could see it because the government raised and spent a goodly amount of tax revenue to make it happen. I think we can agree that the benefits of the future we live in now, were worth all that expenditure then. So I stand with the President and all in Congress who understand that spending now for the future is exactly what we need to do today-come on people now join in and let’s get ahead of China in development of solar technology. The sun shines as bright here as there.

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