I enjoyed a little squib in the Wall Street Journal this past week about large public or public-private projects. They wrote
One of the most enlightening recent guides to modern politics is a study of such politicial "megaprojects." Think California's "bullet train". According to Bent Flyvbjerg of Oxford University, the world is increasingly addicted to such boondoggles, which annually consume between 6% and 9% of global GDP. ...These projects operate on the principle of of bombastic exaggeration. Mr. Flyvbjerg calls it "survival of the unfittest"--a politicized selection process that rewards those promoters who are most shameless in overstating benefits and understating costs.
Bingo. And he even used my favorite term for these - Boondoggle. We have known this for at least four years as people dug into the numbers. In the meantime the bulldozers continue to generate CO2 that will never be recouped and burn tax dollars that are both spent illegally and wastefully.