Some things, bizarre as they may seem at the time, later turn out to have a perfectly rational explanation.
Take that road they want to lay across the lava to Álftanes, for instance. Now there’s a bizarre undertaking if there ever was one. There’s a perfectly good road that is already there, which if it was widened and otherwise amended a bit, would serve perfectly well as a means of getting people out to Álftanes and back. Furthermore it would do so for a small fraction of the cost of bulldozing over an amazing lava field that is moreover listed as a natural conservation site [ok ok, the stakeholders claim that this particular stretch of the lava isn’t on that list but the lava adjacent to it, but that’s splitting hairs in my opinion] and building a new road there.
So someone started digging around. After all, the way they were hammering this thing through, despite court injunctions, demonstrations, people practically chaining themselves to the bulldozers etc. – was really quite harsh. And now it turns out that there are actually a handful of people who stand to profit handsomely from this road, because their land suddenly becomes much more valuable.
So who are the owners of the land? Well, among them are the father and uncle of Bjarni Benediktsson [Independence Party, currently Minister of Finance]. And – surprise surprise – the road construction, as well as this particular route [there were four to choose from, and this one was most convenient for the landowners] was approved when Bjarni Benediktsson was on the planning committee.
Yesterday there was a demonstration in front of the Ministry of the Interior. The Minister, an Independence Party member, was unfortunately absent, as she was in East Iceland to open a new road [oh, the irony]. However, she sent word that the road construction in the Gálgahraun lava field would not be stopped.
Good to see that nepotism and cronyism are still alive and well, just five short years after the economic meltdown nearly sank this nation.