The government built NOT ONE MANUFACTURING plant to fund the REA and TVAI believe REA is a low cost loan guarantee program. It did bring electricity to much of rural America that had previously been overlooked by the electric power industry. This is not unlike the current broadband internet discussion. Rural areas often do without. Providing service improves quality of life and makes possible economic activity that would otherwise be impossible.There are people who say that REA sold a large number of refrigerators--and later many other appliances.Government maybe did not build plants, but low cost power did bring industry to the Tennessee Valley. I am aware of early phosphorus processing there using electric furnaces to upgrade low quality rock. Also Oakridge nuclear plant is there due to low cost power. I suspect there are many more.Economics is far too complex to simplify. But clearly TVA brought industry and jobs to the area.
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