Infrastructure Definition: Republican Video games of Semantics

Sure, Residence Care Is Infrastructure—Don’t Let Them Play Phrase Video games With Individuals’s Lives

President Biden’s infrastructure plan contains $400 billion in house care spending. Forbes Journal describes Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) as “a champion of the GOP’s semantic objections” to that proposal. She and her fellow Republicans declare that house well being care doesn’t fall underneath the definition of infrastructure the identical approach rails and highways do, and due to this fact shouldn’t be included in an infrastructure plan. They’re attacking it on semantic grounds, fairly than substantive ones, as a result of the proposal itself is extraordinarily common.

However they’re not even proper on semantic grounds. Residence care is infrastructure, in accordance with most traditional definitions of the phrase.

We will look to our personal each day lives for an analogy. Everyone has had a private argument with somebody over cash. It may be an previous debt, a restaurant invoice, fuel cash, or utility bills. Regardless of the trigger, there’s typically a degree the place somebody says, “It’s not the cash, it’s the precept of the factor.”

For Republican politicians and their backers, deregulation is holy writ. However deregulation is not infrastructure, by any definition of the phrase.

Right here’s the factor: Each time anybody says that, they’re mendacity. It’s the cash. It’s at all times the cash. That’s true of Blackburn and her fellow Republicans, too. They’re not fearful about semantic purity. It’s the cash.

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