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View Full Version : The 1919 military cross country convoy.



skuthorp
02-25-2014, 07:05 AM
After WW1 some thought was given to what might happen if someone invaded the west coast, and how long it might take to get an army into place there. Fifty six days.
http://img.gawkerassets.com/img/18f0zv40ylgipjpg/ku-xlarge.jpg

"America is probably the best place on Earth for long road trips. Fuel is cheap, food is plentiful, and the roads — they're amazing. But the U.S. of A. wasn't always a land of long, smooth stretches of tarmac you could sail across at 80 mph in almost any weather. A century ago, driving cross-country in America wasn't much better than rallying a Conestoga wagon train."

http://jalopnik.com/how-an-army-convoy-crossed-america-in-56-days-to-prove-248560177

These roads, and the power wires that followed by the mid 1930's were built by the government, with taxpayers money not private capital it should be noted in these days of decrying any government involvement in projects.

BTW, Ike as an army captain, was an observer on the expedition. Because an expedition it surely was.
http://www.eisenhower.archives.gov/research/audiovisual/images/1919_convoy/86_19_270.jpg

These pics taken by Eisenhower mostly.
http://www.eisenhower.archives.gov/research/audiovisual/images/1919_convoy/81_17_14.jpg

Michael D. Storey
02-25-2014, 07:22 AM
It was discovered that rail transport on the East Coast took forever, too. So, they put this guy name of D. D. Eisenhower in charge of making a road system. It was decided odds were north and south, evens east to west.
The first road was (what else?) Rte 1, from Maine to Key West.
Time Lurches ahead.

1950's, same D.D.E., but now he is in the White House Enter the Interstate System. Which is why it's symbol is the five stars, as he was a five star general.

Here in the Land of Pleasant living, there is a sign near the beginning of I-70, lists Fort Collins, 2758 miles. So the sign sez, 'Yeah, we're the Big Guys. Very near to that sign is one of only two five-level over passes.
That's all I got.

LeeG
02-25-2014, 09:01 AM
So what big project should the next prez initiate for the nations security when oil supplies aren't cheap and expanding but expensive and contracting?

In today's dollars it was a $425billion project, $27billion back then.

Phillip Allen
02-25-2014, 09:54 AM
I believe the project has returned much porofit for the States... more or less unlooked for

LeeG
02-25-2014, 10:38 AM
I believe the project has returned much porofit for the States... more or less unlooked for

It certainly has and it was expected to be a vital part of our economy given the rapid increase in car ownership after WWII.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/f/f9/Number_of_Automobiles_per_Household_vs._Year.png

skuthorp
02-25-2014, 03:22 PM
Infrastructure expenditure was part of what got the world out of the Great Depression (so was WW2). What major national infrastructure project is appropriate in this era of reducing oil supplies? Renewable power sources? Pollution reduction and cleaning up of badly polluted sites?
If the mooted reduction of the military goes ahead there'll be a pool of labour and manufacturing expertise to redirect.

Keith Wilson
02-25-2014, 03:35 PM
What major national infrastructure project is appropriate in this era of reducing oil supplies?How about some kind of rail transit in moderate to large-size cities, to help the transition away from such heavy reliance on automobiles? The multiplier effect of civilian infrastructure projects is generally considerably larger than anything military, because you not only pay people, you get roads or something else useful when you're done.

johnw
02-25-2014, 03:57 PM
So what big project should the next prez initiate for the nations security when oil supplies aren't cheap and expanding but expensive and contracting?

In today's dollars it was a $425billion project, $27billion back then.

Well, replacing the old bridges would be a good start. Our stock of public capital has aged badly while we've been cutting taxes and improving the social safety net.

http://media.economist.com/sites/default/files/imagecache/full-width/america-ageing-infrastructure.png

Eisenhower understood the job of government in terms of mobilizing resources. That meant training people and looking after the logistics, in other words, education and roads. It's the forgotten supply side of the economy.