In the middle of the Depression, San Francisco visionaries sold bonds and built the Golden Gate Bridge, a project some thought impossible to build. Others pointed out they already had ferry service to ‘Frisco. Who needed a bridge?
In the 1960s, another group of visionaries in St. Louis decided to build an arch on the banks of the Mississippi. Old fogies yelped, “Who needs an arch? Waste of taxpayer dollars!”
Imagine the comments of stick-in-the-muds like David Madore (with his bookkeeper mentality) and Tom Mielke (who probably finds Rodin’s “The Thinker” too risqué for public display) when confronted by the idea of spending tax dollars on iconic bridges and unnecessary arches?
People like our two county commissioners are unable to envision the future when people might actually take a swift light-rail trip from downtown Portland to cross the Columbia into Vancouver, where they would eat lunch or dinner while enjoying a majestic view of an iconic and beautiful bridge that they can’t see from downtown Portland.
Take off your blinders, commissioners, and see what the future could be if we went forward with liberal vision rather than trembling with budgetary fears. You gotta spend money to make money.