Thursday, March 26, 2009

"GOP-linked front group using O'Hare expansion to smear stimulus plan"

This may be the wackiest explanation ever made for why people oppose O'Hare Airport expansion. To link the opposition to Karl Rove, Republican big-wigs, neo-cons and--this is rich--opposition to the stimulus plan is goofy in the extreme and an affront to the facts.

Truth is, the airport is backed by a coalition of Democrats and big-business, county-club Republicans, including the convicted former Illinois Gov. George Ryan and Illinois GOP establishment central committee chairman. Truth is, the opposition is much more grass-roots that the expansion's supportors. Truth also is that among the leading opponents are environmentalists, who consider O'Hare expansion a major threat to health and quality of life. Truth is that the grass-roots opposition rose from hundreds of owners and renters who have been booted out of their homes in an affordable, blue-collar neighborhood to make way for the expansion.

The article lays out a conspiritorial, paranoid view of the long-fought battle over O'Hare expansion. The fact is that the political connections of whoever is publicizing the opposition is immaterial to the substance of the debate. If whoever wrote this nonsense had bothered to acquiant himself with a few of the facts, instead of being guided by whatever ideological agenda burns fevorishly in his head, he would have noticed that the long-standing grass-roots opposition has more in common with the green agenda than the politically-connected and wealthy expansion proponents.

Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley has quashed every reasonable alternative to relieve the mess at O'Hare because he cannot tolerate the billions of dollars of jobs and contracts going to anyone else but his cronies and his corrupt political machine.

The true solution to aviation capacity problems in the Chicago area is reasonable improvements at O'Hare (e.g. improved controller systems) and the construction of a south suburban airport.

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