Last Saturday’s front page told of a campaign to save a former floating “White House,” a ship built at Bath Iron Works.

Read more and you learn that the ship will cost $40 million to restore and that it was originally constructed for the son of a part-time Maine resident who built one of the world’s largest paper and forest products companies. The person for whom the vessel was built is not named.

The article also mentions that the ship was “slim” and not good in choppy seas – perhaps like the Katahdin, launched in 1898 for the Navy and soon decommissioned.

On the first business page (“Lincoln mill secures $5 million bid,” C1), we read that Lincoln Paper and Tissue has a $5 million offer to begin bankruptcy proceedings that could put 170 people out of work.

This is another bizarre example of the misuse of money by those that have too much. The tax rate on high unearned income needs to be raised, and tax deductions to nonprofits for saving old boats or buildings that do nothing to improve anyone’s lives should be eliminated.

We visited one of these last summer when the whaling ship Charles W. Morgan visited its original home port of New Bedford, Massachusetts. I think restoring old wooden boats to carry people or goods is a good idea, but $40 million was spent to restore the Morgan so it can sit at the museum dock in Mystic, Connecticut – a port it never sailed from!

David Bailey


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