I guess it was only a matter of time, but Lee Myung-bak is reported to be contemplating changing his plan to build a canal from Seoul to Pusan:
Grand National Party presidential candidate Lee Myung-bak is set to revise his flagship pledge to build a cross-country canal, striving to fix flaws in the controversial plan to maintain a lead built on his reputation as an economic expert.
Amid escalating disputes over the massive project, the GNP future vision committee, in charge of finalizing Lee’s campaign platform, has decided to delay announcing their plans until the end of this month.
"Although both Lee and the committee believe in holding onto the canal plan, we have agreed that it has to be revised in order to be included among Lee’s 10 public pledges," said Rep. Kim Hyong-o, head of the committee.
The canal plan has remained Lee’s top pledge despite external and internal criticism. But increasing objections and Lee’s somewhat vague explanation of the project have aroused concern it may adversely affect the former Seoul mayor’s popularity just two months before the Dec. 19 election. [Shin Hae-in, Korea Herald]
I fail to see the use in building a canal to Pusan to move cargo by ship when you can transport goods by water using the ocean just as easily. The only reason I can see to support the project is because it would spend government money on jobs for South Koreans instead of the money going north to fund Kim Jong-il’s lifestyle.