After decades of decline, commercial shipping has returned to the Erie Canal allowing enterprising businessmen like Tim Dufel, assistant engineer on the tugboat Margot and an owner of the New York State Marine Highway Transportation Company, to push shipments, such as 2000 tons of steel, all the way across New York State.
Once nearly forgotten, the relic of American history has shown signs of life as higher fuel prices have made barges an attractive alternative to trucks. As a mate on the Margot said, “Sure it’s history, but it’s still relevant.”
This is the kind of thing Gilding likes to see. This is what makes America great and this is the road to bringing America back to greatness and away from its glutonous obsorbance and dependance on other nations for oil. If more shipping and transport were done via marine vessels utilizing the vast canals and waterways we spent trillions of dollars to create in the past, and railways were used much the same, our roads would be less clogged with umpteen semi-trucks, more shipment could be dispersed across the nation in a single load, and less fuel would be in demand thereby dropping the nations consumption of oil and subsequently its price since demand would be less. The networks are already there, the rails have been built, the canals have long since been there waiting. We should be utilizing what we have and making it better — which would also increase the amount of employment available across the nation — rather than depending on other nations. Free trade enterprise should be about choice, not about necessity. Its wrong that America’s corporate leaders have made us so dependant upon other nations rather than making global enterprise about choice. This is how we get our nation back! One fucking tugboat at a time.