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Monday, July 11, 2011

Comrade Obama and China's Infrastructure

Despite reports of severe power shortages, Obama insists that his comrades in China have eclipsed the United States with a far superior infrastructure.  So we regret that Obama is not in the Chinese promised land to celebrate the 90th birthday of the Communist Party.  In fact we wish he were on the two-day-old motorway that just collapsed, or the collapsing bridges, or the trains that don't run.  Sounds like just his kind of place.

Part of the collapsed motorway in China
A Chinese motorway has collapsed just two days after it opened, causing the deaths of two people, after builders were ordered to rush the project so it could be unveiled for the 90th birthday of the Communist party.
By Malcolm Moore
The 57-mile-long Xinsan motorway, through the mountains of Yunnan, was supposed to be a perfect example of how the Communist party has rolled out pristine infrastructure to even the most remote areas of China, creating economic prosperity.

Despite warnings from the construction team in charge of the project, it was included in the list of "glory projects" to be unveiled for the party's 90th anniversary on July 1.
Huge banners were slung on the cliffs above the road, reminding its builders: "Work hard, work quickly, we have 60 days left".

According to the Chinese media, party chiefs in Beijing warned the local government that if the motorway was not finished on time, its 2 billion yuan (£194 million) cost would have to come out of local, rather than central, coffers.

However, two days after the road opened for trials, heavy storms crumbled the red earth underneath it and washed a section into the valley below, killing two and injuring two more.

The motorway is only one of a number of major projects which were rushed through to meet the deadline.

The 820-mile Beijing-to-Shanghai high-speed railway, open to the public for only eleven days, yesterday (SUN) saw trains stalled for two hours after an electrical failure.

Meanwhile, at Nanjing South railway station, workmen have fenced off huge areas of the station platform for repairs. Outside, workers have smashed thousands of granite floor tiles put on show for the station's opening ceremony and are now repaving the whole area. An official said the tiles had been temporary to get the station looking finished for July 1.

In the northern city of Qingdao, engineers have resumed work on the world's longest sea bridge to fit it with the safety barriers and lighting that were not quite done when it was opened to the public, with some fanfare, ahead of the anniversary.

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