February 28, 2011
Because the cost *is* the benefit

The Seattle City Council voted 8-1 to override Mayor Mike McGinn's veto, and proceed with the Alaskan Way tunnel.

Financing for the multi-billion dollar tunnel isn't fully fleshed out (even before inevitable cost overruns). But so what? The taxpayers are captive and the more it costs, the greater the benefit:

Dozens of union workers in reflective vests and hard hats also filled the room and applauded the vote to go forward with the tunnel, saying it would mean jobs for thousands in the construction industry.

"We need the work. Half the people in the building trades are unemployed. The mayor fighting this thing is just costing us more money," said Joel Craig, business agent for Local 7 of the International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers.

(McGinn's veto letter called for protecting Seattle from "unaffordable cost overruns". Bravo! Read that back to him when he asks for more light rail).

Posted by Stefan Sharkansky at February 28, 2011 07:41 PM | Email This
1. Oh, good. Let's make union middlemen rich. We need some Wisconsin action here.

Posted by: Matt M. on February 28, 2011 07:22 PM
2. So why aren't conservatives fighting this tunnel? I don't get it.

Posted by: Joe Szilagyi on February 28, 2011 09:04 PM
3. Ya lives in a liberal, urban cess-pool like Seattle, ya pays the price....

Posted by: Attila on March 1, 2011 05:26 AM
4. Joe @ 2: What conservatives? All three of them?

And most "building tradesmen" referred to are non-union. Only public-funded projects pay the wages/benefits unions demand for construction workers. Hire union labor to build houses and a three-bedroom rambler would cost $500K to build.

Why did a ferry that cost $35M to build in Mississippi cost over $75M in WA? Exorbitant union wages and benefits, same as Democrats force us to pay for state highway projects. And why? So those same unions can line the pockets of Democrat politicians. When will idiot WA voters learn?

Posted by: Saltherring on March 1, 2011 07:03 AM
5. So Mayor McGinn, who flip-flopped on this very issue to get elected, flops again. That makes him a hero at this site, for brutally obvious reasons.

Overriding a veto is a function of this thing we have, called constitutional democracy, i.e. the executive is not an elected dictator. (No, we expect no support for those ideas here. Carry on.)

(McGinn's veto letter called for protecting Seattle from "unaffordable cost overruns". Bravo! Read that back to him when he asks for more light rail).

Also, will we read that back to anyone who wants to spend money on non-toll roads? Just curious.

Posted by: tensor on March 1, 2011 03:04 PM
6. Definition: a system of government based on popular sovereignty in which the structures, powers, and limits of government are set forth in a constitution

I see that the People's Republic of Seattle has a Charter; regardless of how tensor defines his city government, clearly most of it's residents see our Federal Constitution as a living breathing instrument with which they would otherwise wipe their backside with. With no provision for electable accountability by district (see: at-large council positions) it's structure is probably more akin to that for Moscow.

Now, one hopes that tensor understands that most of our governments are instead representative republics.

Posted by: yaddacubed on March 2, 2011 02:56 PM
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