Road argument has been framed by fear

Letter to the editor

Posted: Thursday, November 02, 2006

In his letter of support for Sarah Palin, Rick Urion on Oct. 26 resorts to the old tactic of playing to voter's fears. In fact, unfortunately, much of the road argument has been framed in the fear argument - if Juneau doesn't get a road the capital will be moved.

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What a load of horse pucky. Let's think about this a minute. In the best of weather, the Railbelt is a 20-hour of drive from Juneau - and much of the legislative season is not in the best of weather. Constituents would have to spend two days to drive up and two days to drive back (with $3 a gallon gasoline - more in Canada) at least two overnights on the road, lodging costs in Juneau and at least a five days' food bill to engage in one day of contact with their legislator. How many real people actually have the time, money and leisure to do that? Oh, by the way, let's also add that thanks to our current federal government, everyone driving to Juneau will have to have a passport to pass through Canada.

Or they can go to their legislative teleconference center or even dial up from the convenience of their own home, give testimony and then go to sleep in their very own bed (no passport required).

I know there are those in the business community that are salivating at the prospect of all those constituents coming to Juneau and spending money. But it's a pipe dream. It's much less expensive to hop on a jet (with those great constituent fares) to lobby legislators face to face, than to pay the gas, food, lodging and time to drive here. Anyone who believes that hordes of Railbelters are going to drive to Juneau is deluding themselves.

Becky Bear


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