President-elect Barack Obama announced a two-year program intended to create more than 2.5 million jobs by 2011, in his second YouTube video (and radio) “Weekly Address” since getting elected. He was surprisingly specific in terms of the support he expects to provide to various cleantech technologies. Excerpt:
“We’ll put people back to work rebuilding our crumbling roads and bridges, modernizing schools that are failing our children, and building wind farms and solar panels, fuel-efficient cars and the alternative energy technologies that can free us from our dependence on foreign oil and keep our economy competitive in the years ahead.”
He says his economic team is working out the details at this time; their agenda already says a lot, though. It aims to put $25 billion toward road and school infrastructure repair costs. It wants to invest $150 billion over the next ten years in a wide range of technologies and job-creation programs.
Many fiscal conservatives would prefer to fight recessions by lowering taxes, reducing government spending and regulations, and other methods. The focus on infrastructure and some of the cleantech spending, however, might strike a non-partisan chord.
For example, FedEx chief executive Fred Smith recently touted more oil drilling, less overall business regulation and an overhaul of the tax structure in order to spur innovation. Yet he also agrees that advancing battery-powered car technology is a generally important priority.
Also of note: Obama published this video on his transition-team site, Change.gov. While comments and ratings are closed for the video on the YouTube site, Change.gov offers a way to participate — you can fill out a form expressing your thoughts. It’s not clear how the incoming administration will make use of this feedback, but it’s certainly another step in making the government more open and accessible.
What do you think about this spending focus? Let us know in the poll, below.http://www.buzzdash.com/bb.swf?BB_id=133503