So much for the stimulus bill. Here is a perfect example of why the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 is largely useless in the face of so many other government mandated economic sanctions. A declining economy and gas tax revenues have forced Michigan to cancel $740 million in road and bridge work. The state can’t even come up with the 20 percent match required to receive the federal government’s 80 percent funding. And the state could stand to lose up to $1.9 billion over the next four years.
A one time shot of stimulus money can’t even begin to make up for this loss of federal highway assistance. It’s too little to matter, and the new automotive fuel economy standards (CAFE) and proposed “green” energy policy (AECS) working it’s way through Congress are only going to lead to further unemployment in Michigan, higher prices for energy, reduced manufacturing output and declining fuel taxes.
This happened in Michigan first because the federal government already controls much of that’s state’s automotive “industrial policy.” But as the new CAFE standards and AECS work their way into the national economic fabric the same sort of self perpetuating economic constriction will begin to spread throughout the remaining 49 states.