I was trying this symbolic link approach because of the problem described here: http://askubuntu.com/a/120221/70462
After I made the symlink, the installation proceeded further than before, but it eventually asked for my password (in an extra small x-term window within the AIR installation window). When I typed in my password, it told me there was an authentication failure. I tried about 8 times total (on 3 separate install attempts), but even when I was certain I was typing my password correctly, it would tell me there was an authentication error.
Specifically the text in the x-term window was:
TITLEBAR: xdg-su: /tmp/air.x0rSdF/setup TERM: This application requires administrative rights to run Please enter root Password: su: Authentication failure Please enter root Password: