By Margaret Hedderman
With a deficit of nearly of over $17 trillion, there is, and has been for quite some time now, a focus on government spending. The Obama Administration is repeatedly chastised for not cutting costs. Republicans act as though all government spending is bad and should be stopped before our freedom is gone forever. But let’s just pause for a moment and take a look at what government spending has gotten us so far.
In 1956, President Eisenhower signed the Federal Aid Highway Act. For $25 billion (which eventually turned into $425 billion), the United States Government constructed our interstate system. Over the course of the next 35 years, America was connected by direct, high-speed freeways. Everyday we experience the benefits of the Interstate System (like it or not.) Our food is delivered cross-country. We visit families in other states via the interstate. Nearly 1/4 of all road miles are driven via the interstate.
If you’re reading this, you’re obviously using the internet. Our lives would not exist in the manner they do today without the use of the internet. ARPANET, the internet predecessor, was developed as an internal database for the U.S. Department of Defense. In 1981, ARPANET was expanded and the next year the concept for the world wide web was developed with the invention of the Internet Protocol Suite.
The Global Positioning System is maintained by the United States government is free to access for anyone around the world. Initially developed by the Department of Defense for military use, GPS navigators are now used by 17% of all Americans (as of 2007.) We use GPS navigators in our cellphones, in our cars, on hikes, and, most importantly, to find coffee.