Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Monday, January 22, 2007

Remember When?

THEN: Is Gasoline the opiate of the masses? I don’t know. But, it’s odd that oil and gas companies, who have a large stake in retaining the Republican congress, and also have control over gas prices, have decided to lower their high prices as we approach the mid-term elections.

NOW: The average retail price for a gallon of gasoline in the United States fell nearly 14 cents over the past two weeks.

That "lower the gas prices" conspiracy sure worked out well for the GOP, didn't it?

THEN:Washington has its own disaster waiting to happen. New Orleans sits below sea level with deferred maintenance on the levees in an area prone to hurricanes. Seattle sits at the edge of Puget Sound, with a crumbling seawall and a viaduct ready to tumble, in an area prone to earthquakes. This fall we will be voting to maintain or repeal the gas tax that is earmarked to fund the replacement of the viaduct.

Action: We can vote to maintain this tax so that government can take care of this kind of major infrastructure project. That's what government does best.

NOW: Without committing herself to a course of action, the governor said she wants to hear what voters say in a March 13 election in Seattle on the viaduct.

The proposed four-lane tunnel is an alternative to a $4.6 billion six-lane model that had been on the table. However, the new tunnel proposal has not been fully vetted. Gregoire said there are many unanswered questions. She wants to get as many of them answered as possible before it goes to a vote.

After that, it's not clear what will happen.

"The end of the legislative session is the final say because we're moving forward with one of the two options we had in December (the elevated highway or the $4.6 billion tunnel) or whatever the Legislature may choose alternatively," Gregoire said.

What "government does best" is spend money that doesn't belong to them. The wealthy condo owners in Seattle want a water view and we lowly peons in the rest of the state get to foot the bill. Meanwhile, as the Neros fiddle, STILL no concrete plan for fixing the Alaskan Way Viaduct. Some crisis.

Lord, what fools these voters be.

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