Different view on the river locks and dams

Published 1:07am Saturday, September 29, 2012

I have a little different perspective on the Corps closing operations on the Alabama River. I love the river and it is an icon of the area, but I’m truly surprised it hasn’t been shut down before now. I am here because of the river, but you have to face reality, hopefully. Thanks. James G.

It is an age old story, almost everyone agrees the federal government needs to cut spending, but no one wants to give up anything. The federal government has and continues to create itself unsustainable monsters with insatiable appetites. The more freebees they give, the more are demanded.

The more dependency programs they create the more recipients become dependent.

Ronald Reagan said this about government programs: “The closest thing to immortality on this earth is a federal government program.” No truer words were ever spoken by a politician. Once they are in place, it is almost impossible to eliminate them no matter how unwise or costly they become. How many of these government programs have you ever heard of ending?

It is unfortunate that we cannot seem to agree on some things simply being too expensive to continue and carry on. There is such a thing in business as return on investment that government doesn’t have to be concerned about.

In private business, you either meet your goals or be cut. Government doesn’t work like that; they spend your money at will without regards to its effectiveness. Let me phrase that another way, they waste taxpayer money without regard or consequences.

The recent developments on navigating the Alabama River is a prime example of not wanting anything cut.

Now it is not that I don’t have sympathy for those who like to play and relax on the river, but is this an essential and resourceful use of borrowed taxpayer money seeing as how we are already 16 trillion dollars in debt?

Is it necessary to be able to get locked through the dams at any time in order to enjoy an outing on the river? I think not — and to me it is a little selfish to expect taxpayers to continue to borrow to pay for that service when so few actually use it.

I do not buy into the commercial use development aspect either. If it hasn’t happened in the last 40 years, then it is unrealistic to think it is going to happen now, given our present business and economic climate.

Growth is stagnate with jobs and manufacturing moving overseas fleeing the high cost of doing business here. Admittedly, there is an occasional commercial vessel, but not to the extent needed to justify the cost of full time operations.

The argument always is; well, keeping the locks open is just a drop in the bucket.

I have news for you; it is these drops in the bucket that has gotten got us to the brink of ruination. A little common sense would be in order.

  • Bamaboy

    If you think the decision to close down the river locks is about reducing the debt you are very naive. I am all for eliminating government waste and handouts to those who are not in critical need, including the recently approved 500 million dollars to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. I am weary of our government taking away our fundamental rights.. Like acess to our rivers.. While assisting our enemies with billions of dollars. When the Corps installed the locks our continued access was part of the agreement. Now, without notice or any public hearings or financial studies that right is being stripped from us. America has been unique from other countries because we have rights and freedoms. I am sick and tired of government waste, but just as livid over the abuse. If reporters, like those at STJ, had not drawn attention to this issue.. We would have just had our right to access our river stripped from us.

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