Temporary insanity

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While New York city and state officials bicker over a future expansion to the Javits Center, the venerable convention venue, faced with a deluge of bookings and a dearth of space, built a temporary exhibit hall as a stopgap solution. The temporary hall adds 814,000 square feet of exhibit space to the Javits Center, is fully insulated and air conditioned and cost $3.5 million to erect. I'm sorry, but $3.5 million for a temporary structure? To me, this is like paying a hundred bucks for a disposable lighter.

An environmental activist group called the Earth Liberation Front said it is responsible for the fires that closed Vail Mountain Ski Resort for almost a month. Of course, this is terrorism, pure and simple, but moreover, does it really help the cause to destroy attractions that encourage, even in an indirect way, a greater appreciation of nature?

President Clinton signed a bill that will provide Amtrak with $609 million. What do you think the chances are that Amtrak is saying, hey, with this kind of infusion, maybe now we can pay travel agents more than a 5% basic commission rate?

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