Matthew Cianfrani, Jensen Beach
Letter: A rolling oil spill, a rail disaster: the calamity that would be All Aboard Florida
I am a new resident of Martin County who chose this location for the quality of life and the forward thinking of those who pushed Interstate 95 way west.
The All Aboard Florida debate typifies a disturbing trend in this country, the institutionalization of greed and the circumvention of the voting citizens.
First, be clear: This is not about passengers. This is about a British Petroleum Gulf spill rolling through our backyards all day, every day in chemical cars they have been warned to take out of service. Fingers crossed?
To clean up the inevitable derailment, the railroads (read "hedge fund") would send the public relations firm. We would pay for everything else.
A rail fire would dwarf the biodiesel fire in Stuart.
Hedge funds are without peer, the worst of America. They are indifferent and are beyond the law. But they know risk management. This deal is tailor-made for them, 100 percent reward, zero risk. Sound like a good bond sales pitch?
When the fireball erupts, not only would counties struggle to pay for cleanup, we would go bankrupt seeking damages through the courts. Just ask Alaska about its battle with ExxonMobil.
The violator's last resort would be bankruptcy, again shifting liability back to us.
This deal is clearly one-sided; Floridians have nothing to gain and everything to lose, and to lose forever.
I propose we not stand idly by while our irreplaceable ecosystems go down forever, taking our state economy with it. I charge every journalist from Tallahassee to Miami to follow the money.
Second, let's get the voters involved. If our elected officials refuse to act in our interest, we need direct voter representation. Everyone register, and everyone vote. It is the only true weapon left to us and the only one they fear.