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June 23, 2016


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I sensed pressures to punch this story up. I don't know if the reporters had convinced themselves that the construction issues were larger than they were, all else being equal, or if editorial thought an important technical story about tugboats by itself wasn't enough for the resources they had allocated, or some third thing.

(The counterfactual near and dear to our hearts would be, the expansion as on time and on budget with the same level of construction quality as the Big Dig.)

To Carlos's point, the story in print spread from the front page right column (biggest news of the day) to TWO entire double sheets of the paper, or four-plus pages. That included the photos of course, but it does represent a substantial investment in print (and it included maps and diagrams, which lately have been in short supply in the printed newspaper; I remember when nearly every "Journal" article came with its own mini map showing the hamlet/town/city the reporter was writing from).

As Noel puts it, the earthquake issue is kind of a non-starter. Earthquake insurance can be bought, and meanwhile, until there is an earthquake, we can still use the new larger locks on the canal for commerce. And after the earthquake, who knows? Maybe the giant tsunami will wipe out all commercial activity along the Pacific Rim and there will be no need for a canal.

Thanks, Noel, for providing your apt thoughts to the article. I really appreciate it, and am as always looking forward to buying the first round when we meet up again.

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