Pipeline unwelcome, angry sleeping giant
I live less than half a mile from the Bluegrass Pipeline's proposed route. The plan to bury that pipeline in our cavernous, fragile, sinkhole topography is like the story of the angry sleeping giant, buried with the hope that it will never, ever awaken. The question, however, is not will the angry giant awake but when.
The Williams Company spends hundreds of thousands of dollars flattering, coddling, patronizing and promising Kentucky homeowners and landowners with advertisements and mailings saluting the benefits of the pipeline.
On the other hand, they threaten these same citizens with seizure of their property through eminent domain.
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In a full-page ad in the Herald-Leader, the William's Company praises and preaches the many benefits the pipeline will bring to Kentuckians and the commonwealth. Falsely, they claim that hundreds of jobs will be created along with potential new infrastructure. In fact, only a handful of workers will monitor the pipeline, while the only line the construction crews will face is the unemployment line. Meager benefits for such catastrophic risks.
The Williams Company is peddling their claims like old carpetbaggers peddled snake oil that cured all ills. At the expense and threat to Kentuckians for a very small pittance, the company will reap gigantic profits.
Be wary Kentucky, be careful for what we wish. Our commonwealth does not need an angry, sleeping giant buried and waiting to awaken from under our beautiful Bluegrass.
John B. Lynaugh
Connector a bad investment
Building the proposed Interstate 75 connector through one of Central Kentucky's most scenic and historic areas would make the region less attractive to companies that bring high-paying jobs and their economic spinoffs.
We should shore up our decaying transportation infrastructure rather than build a costly new road. A recent Herald-Leader article referred to large portions of the interstate highway system as wearing out. The fuel tax is not keeping up with road repair costs.
Of 14,028 bridges in Kentucky, 1,247 (8.9 percent) are considered deficient, with 4,416,436 vehicles crossing them daily. More than 100 Kentucky bridges have advanced deterioration and are at risk of collapsing, according to the Sept. 16 report. Within 10 miles of Lexington, eight bridges are structurally unsound.
The I-75 connector would cost an estimated $400 million to $500 million and have at least one bridge spanning the Kentucky River near Valley View. I have heard that it is easier to get federal money for new roads than for maintaining old roads. It still is not a good investment. Some workers would be employed temporarily but the long-term gain is not there.
Improving public transportation to reduce traffic would be a better use of public money and benefit more citizens. Transit agencies have faced unprecedented fiscal crises with many laying off workers, cutting back service and raising fares at the worst time, yet public transportation use has increased 38 percent since 1995 — nearly triple the growth rate of the U.S. population.
Misguided help for poor
Seems every day lately in the Herald-Leader's letters someone is wagging a finger at those who object to the explosion of food stamp use. Some even suggest a better reading of the Bible would cure a conservative's attitudes toward giveaways for the needy. No it won't.
Jesus never said to give to the poor through Caesar's bloated, wasteful programs. We are to help the needy directly or through our places of worship, with involvement and with wisdom.
Another well-meaning but misguided give-away with terrible unintended consequences is Aid to Dependent Children. A young woman hired to help my aging father was both bright and capable but hadn't finished school. Through her I learned that getting pregnant while in school means an ADC check so young girls can move into their own apartments. A second fatherless child increases the ADC, and means a better apartment. Or better electronics. But, alas, no father.
On jury duty I heard a case where a family petitioned to get their 18-year-old son involuntarily committed to Eastern State. His problem, it seemed to me, was that once he hit age 18 and no longer qualified for that aid, they wanted him to get a job to help support them. He chose instead to run away. The family had the police bring him back. Involuntary commitment would mean another monthly government check to share.
Lives are sometimes ruined and society is only weakened with Caesar's brand of charity.
Return to Bible
When as a nation we declared the Bible as an irrelevant guide to society we brought up a generation of people without knowledge on which to base an honest and upright life.
We now have people running our government who have no idea how great and influential the laws of God have been for society, nor can they fathom the cause and effect that taking the laws of God out of our society has had.
Our colleges and universities are now full of professors who deny the root of America. Our forefathers came here in search for government largely based on the principles taught in the Bible. It was new, with new ideas for a Constitution that was so basic that it lasted for all time. Have the learned among us learned more and more about less and less until they have lost touch with basic facts or truths?
The ACLU is at it again. Why can't it treat the Bible as just another book? Why is the name of God and Jesus as repulsive as them? Is society really better off than it was when we taught what the Bible said as truth? ACLU, you had better get real. You are blind and leading America down a blind path to destruction.
Whether you are liberal or conservative, the basic laws of morality among us will always be necessary. Ask yourself — from whence come these laws?