Why Does Infrastructure Cost So Much?

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: the Government brought its best intentions and a bottomless bag of money, removed all incentive for fiscal responsibility, then left us all wondering why an entire industry got so expensive. No, I’m not talking about higher education — or health care, pharmaceuticals, or agriculture; I’m talking about infrastructure.

Charles Marohn points out that the United States has used infrastructure spending to boost its economy for decades, without considering the long-term costs of those projects. Those bills are now coming due in the form of expensive upkeep. Thanks to an environment that did little to incentivize fiscal responsibility, we find ourselves saddled with these massive maintenance projects and equipped with a cost-insensitive workforce to handle them. He falls short in offering a helpful solution, but his analysis of the root problem is excellent.