SALINA, Kan. - "Boon!" was the headline for Tim Unruh's Salina Journal piece Sunday, Sept. 26. It laid out how Clay Center (and Herington, Junction City, Abilene, and many others) are laying out the welcome mat for TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline.
Count the benefits: Bud's Tire service sales tripling, with guaranteed overstock buyout/bailout; referrals for boat sales, doctors, and dentists; full restaurants; swelling campground rentals; pipeline spouses as public service volunteers; pump station/power generation cash cutting Clay Center's electric rates "up to" twenty percent; six million dollars for a 14.5-mile transmission line; and most heart-warmingly, 1,000 charity bucks from TransCanada and 500 from the pipeline company for Clay Center's Orchestra, which just lost funding from the Kansas Arts Commission.
This headline's more accurate, long-term: "Boondoggle!" These transient benefits last only till November -- with potential damage to our land lasting at least a hundred years, perhaps far longer. Or, there's "Boom!" And later, "Bust!"