Thursday, April 07, 2005


I recall when Hubert Humphrey was dying of cancer, a rule was changed to allow federal buildings to be named for a living person... a nice gesture for Humphrey, but a bad idea in general.


Steve Barton said...

Exactly! Long-standing military rule is that things can only be named for dead heroes. Not sure how DoD has reconciled that with some of the same kind of "centers" Byrd has in WVa that have built in support of DoD missions and named for politicians.

Ooh, my favorite naming story is the Gene Snyder Freeway in Louisville, Kentucky. Used to drive it all the time in the 80s/90s going in to Louisville from Fort Knox, part of it is designated I-265.

The subject of "who is this guy" would come up occasionally...

Who is this guy? He was the congressman who represented the area when that interstate section was finished. Probably had a hand in the funding.

What else did he do? Nothing notable.

When did he die? Still alive.

Why don't I hear of him in Kentucky? Right after the freeway was finished, he retired from congress and took up life as a Washington lobbyist, where he spends all his time.

He appears to have been alive into the 2004 election cycle.

Anyway, his name is on ten thousand lips every day, and he is a forgotten hack politician. (although maybe his lobbying work has some sway on taxes or regulations outside of public notice, where they like it)

Re-naming something that everyone knows is a real disruption and I'm not advocating it. It's why prominent structures should be named only for those without current way, whose course in life is run.

Enjoyed your pictures!

Rick Lee said...

Thanks Steve.... We had these embarrassing moments in WV when some names of schools, etc had to be changed. For instance, the Arch Moore Vocational/Technical School was changed when the esteemed former Governor went to prison.

LargeBill said...

The Navy unfortunately broke from this tradition several years ago. Now we have a carrier being built named for George H.W. Bush and a submarine recently commissioned USS JIMMY CARTER. Sure it's nice to honor someone while they are living. However, that desire doesn't out-weigh the potential for embarrassment.

Hippie Killer said...

Seeing how Jimmy Carter was the captain of a submarine, I somehow fail to see the potential for emarrassment.

Brandon Brewster said...

Robert C Byrd Center for Kicking Conservative Ass.