ANYONE who is confused about why the American people are so upset these days with their government should take a drive along U.S. 35 from Interstate 64 to the Ohio River.
The road shows a government that cannot deliver a quality product in a reasonable time.
The trip begins promising with a nice four-lane roller coaster ride up and down the hills of Putnam County.
There is plenty of room between the two lanes in each direction and with limited access interchanges along the way.
But after a dozen or so miles, the situation becomes harrowing.
Drivers have to click off cruise control as they decompress from modern interstate driving.
The curves are pretty tight as the road deposits cars at the foot of the Buffalo bridge over the Great Kanawha River.
Then things get worse.
West of that intersection, the modern highway transforms into a two-lane blacktop where hay wagons compete with tractor-trailers for space.
Add in an early morning fog or an afternoon drizzle and you have one of the flattest and yet one of the most dangerous roadways in West Virginia.
The signs may say U.S. 35 but the reality is this is merely part of W.Va. 817, which east of the bridge is a nice quiet state highway that connects Winfield with St. Albans via the John Amos plant.
The biggest threat to drivers is the occasional suicidal deer who leaps from the woods and attacks a car.
Highways officials are not to blame for the U.S. 35 mess.
If they had their way, U.S. 35 would be one fun roller coaster ride all the way to Point Pleasant where a bridge would await drivers to take them on to Ohio.
But the appropriators of state money decided the money is not there.
On Monday, the Gazette reported on the state's alternative proposals for funding construction, including borrowing money through a bond.
In short, the road will not be built any time soon.
How different from three years ago, when officials declared the project a near emergency.