September 18, 2002
Some days, Mick Ireland can be a board-certified, 14-karat, political pain in the neck. However, although Mick and I often disagree, and usually work on opposite sides of the tracks, he has still earned my respect.
I would be the first to acknowledge that Mick is a skilled politician and an effective advocate. To his credit, he is hard working, well informed and relentless in the pursuit of his goals.
Lately, his “style points” have even improved. It’s great to see him sticking to a factual discussion of the issues, and avoiding the personal attacks that have tainted so many of our political debates. Amazingly, Mick’s letters to the editor have even displayed a sense of humor. What fun!
Mick, in the spirit of amicable debate, I would like to give you another chance at Basic Logic 101. Geeesh. I am sure they taught you this stuff in law school.
You ask Aspen voters to approve the “straight-shot” for “the greater good.” The problem with this type of argument is that it almost always breaks down once the premise is extended.
If we really cared about the “greater good,” why wouldn’t we beg our state and national politicians to use the millions of dollars to be wasted on our proposed road for something really important?
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Wouldn’t it be a “greater good” to help educate Native Americans living in poverty on a Colorado reservation? Do we really need a $62 million highway at the expense of hungry and homeless people in Mississippi?
Moreover, the “greater good” argument actually supports keeping our historic S-curves. Aspen is a unique, charming little ski town, and our main product is “fun.” That’s what attracts the tourists.
If Aspenites accept radical design changes that decrease our charm, and detract from our individuality, we jeopardize our tourist-based economic vitality. Ultimately, we won’t be doing anyone a favor if we approve a hideous concrete tunnel that may someday lead into a ghost town.
We have all enjoyed the recent humorous letters, and Mick’s colorful responses, jokingly comparing our county commissioner to Darth Vader. Mick, it’s our fondest wish that you will not cross over to the “dark side,” so please stay out of the tunnel.
Jerald (Obi-Wan Kenobi) Bovino