ALASKAN BRIDGE TO SOMEWHERE
By Ken Bylund
September 09, 2008
Startling, this surge in our mob of 'me firsts'. Remembering
the arguments here when the two hundred million dollar Bridge
to Gravina Island was in the planning stage, many others in Ketchikan
were pushing for a bridge to the mainland so ground transport
& commerce could flow onto Revilla Island; a lot of us raised
our eyebrows and nodded, more ROI there than an air/sea traffic
hazard across to that sparsely populated shoreline. Today we
might all focus on a reasonable argument for a hydroelectric
source at Mahoney Lake, a shelved project that would provide
ROI for all of us, every family on the grid. But we continue
to argue 'it would've been nice to have a bridge to the airport.'
We're still paying that diesel surcharge and those who
run KPU say this winter will be more of the same. So, what if
someone in Colorado or California says, 'it will take five years
to bring a project like Mahoney Lake dam/power line to fruition';
are we all just going to 'go away' in that specific amount of
time? Your kids will be... how old in four or five years? Power
is the critical issue here, just like Colorado and California
- not that bridge to Gravina, so real estate can be jacked up
on more muskeg and rock. We have plenty of that on this side
of Tongass Narrows. Sell power to the cruise ships at dockside?
Good idea! But next time we burn millions of dollars planning
a capital project, be smart - start with a concept that benefits
everyone, not just 'me first'.
Now, that two hundred million dollar estimate on the bridge to
Gravina has doubled, think the ferry system isn't a bargain?
Perhaps if you own some of that muskeg or figure you'll get some
of that $400,000,000, but that's too often what it's all about.
How many of our local citizens got those jobs on building new
docks in Ketchikan? A bridge to the mainland or even to Gravina
might happen yet, but not if we keep acting like misbehaved teens
who didn't get our way, and think if we scream loud and long
enough... it really is time to move on.
We need energy to survive; hydroelectric is what we have in abundance,
waiting to be tapped, our rain and mountain lakes are the low
fruit. Rather than a new + $20,000,000 swimming pool, or + $20,000,000
library, and Schoenbar, another + $20,000,000 disaster, and not
forgetting that $25,000,000 jobs fund that went down the rabbit
hole at Ward Cove and the Veneer Plant - would've gone a long
way to alleviate today's diesel surcharge... and the next
disaster - it is possible to come together to build
a long lasting bridge to somewhere that brings benefit and pride
for us all - can we just pull together, stop embarrassing ourselves
with more puerile behavior? The Egyptians built the pyramids
with less than we have going for us here in Southeast Alaska!
This morning we see Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac being "rescued"
by the government; the amount - $5,400,000,000,000. Most
of us didn't have any idea there is 5.4 trillion in paper money
in circulation. Wildly inflated home prices and no collateral
- gives new meaning to 'collateral damage', and the next rant
will be that the Bush Administration is at fault; many will believe
it, that first strike, like a first impression, will leave few
doubters. But like that obscure Social Security Scandal, or more
recently the Looting of Savings and Loans, this was caused by
them 'me firsts' who feathered their nests or bought votes by
encouraging monetary institutions to give loans to them with
little or no collateral - an ongoing policy since money and
power overruled principle.
Here's why we should vote for adult style change that Sarah Palin
and John McCain advocate; not a day passes when someone says
"entitlements need to be discontinued". That
would be President Roosevelt's Social Security Fund. Lyndon
B. Johnson and them elected leaders of ours [crooks on both sides]
decided to siphon all that existing money into the General
Fund, words like, 'SSI was over-funded', and we got LBJ's
"Great Society"; now drug addicts receive benefits
along with many other fraudulent slackers creating nothing more
than mischief - and that vulnerable generation of seniors that
worked for their day in the sun... get "dissed" - that
was CHANGE! Good move, jerks! We need someone with guts to go
to Washington and expose career thieves on both sides of the
aisle, living like royalty on our blood and sweat.
A show of hands, how many think Washington insider's gluttony,
pork, and irresponsible earmarks, like a multimillion dollar
museum for Woodstock, is worth more than energizing a healthcare
system, or improving the quality of education and counseling
students that haven't the perspective to know what course to
fix on and follow. It isn't about laptops or more teachers...
it is about FOCUS! And we seem to be losing that; screaming about
government money, our money, is missing what is important...
potential. If we don't clear our heads and work on something
positive, we won't go anywhere but down - and that negative stuff
is getting all the attention it needs by the talking heads on
Received September 07, 2008
- Published September 09, 2008
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