Fruit Flies and Volcanoes: Why Bobby Jindal and Sarah Palin Should Run in 2012

Two things have stuck out to me from Bobby Jindal’s Republican response:

  1. Repetitive, overused references to how Louisiana recovered from Hurricane Katrina paired with attempts to show that this relates to getting us out of the economic crisis.
  2. “$140 million for something called ‘volcano monitoring.’ Instead of monitoring volcanoes, what Congress should be monitoring is the eruption of spending in Washington, DC.” This quote was immediately followed by a horrendous flashback to Sarah Palin’s infamous remark about fruit flies last election.

Okay, Jindal. I see your point about government spending. Thing is, some things are worth spending on.

See, just because it’s called the “theory of” plate tectonics doesn’t mean there aren’t active volcanoes, or dormant volcanoes that  could become active again.

You know that state in the middle of the Pacific? Y’know? Hawaii? You know why those islands are there?

No, God didn’t put them there. They’re there because they’re sitting on a hot spot.

Oh, but it’s not just limited to the middle of the Pacific. A quick Google search reveals a map of potentially active volcanoes all along the west coast.

But wait! There’s more! Another quick Google search finds a USGS page talking about the benefits of volcano monitoring during the Mount Pinatubo eruption in 2012 (note to self: typing  outside in your backyard in the middle of the night may lead to nonsensical typos) in 1991. I quote (and add emphasis):

The monitoring of Mount Pinatubo in 1991 and the successful forecasting of its cataclysmic June 15 eruption prevented property losses of at least $250 million (this figure is intentionally conservative and should be considered a minimum value). No monetary value has been placed on the more than 5,000 lives saved, although other cost-benefit analyses have used values from $100,000 to $1 million per life.

Note to Jindal’s speech writers: if the American people can use Google so can you.

Oh, if only it had been $140 million spent on hurricane monitoring. It would tie in with the “we can deal with natural disasters” theme rather well. And by well I mean ironically. And by ironically I mean it would make Jindal more laughable than Palin.

Speaking of which, there were a lot of Facebook status messages that said “Jindal/Palin 2012″ and some of them were serious. Wouldn’t that be great? Then we could have TWO anti-science creationists in the highest seats of public office in America!

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21 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by kip on February 25, 2009 at 5:53 am

    As I watched this idiot, all I could think was, If this is the best the GOP can come up with, they’re even worse off than I thought.

  2. Jindal, like any Republican gunning for an office in the future has an ideology to chant regardless of how factual it is. His fans want to hear his snappy quotes because they already agree with him no matter what and to them, it doesn’t matter what goes on in Hawaii or on the West Coast or next door. Only they and avoiding any help to others, regardless of how it will benefit them down the road, are the only things that matter. Jindal is simply playing to their personal ideology.

    But hey, I think he can exorcise the financial crisis if he puts his mind to it. After all, he’s pretty sure he prayed away melanoma tumors:

    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2008/06/12/who-will-exorcise-mccains-choice-for-vp/

  3. Posted by wazza on February 25, 2009 at 7:00 am

    kip: even worse than that, a large proportion of US citizens think the best they can come up with is pretty good

  4. I wasn’t actually paying attention to the TV (it was on mute–I had a lot of work), but I glanced up, and the first words out of my mouth were “Ew! Bobby Jindal!”

    What can I say? Dude scares me.

  5. I noticed that line too.

    Volcanos can be a hazard to air travel…
    http://www.popularmechanics.com/science/earth/4302310.html

  6. [...] o’ the blinders to Splendid Elles, who has great comments on Jindal’s [...]

  7. Posted by cthellis on February 25, 2009 at 8:19 pm

    But wait! There’s more! Another quick Google search finds a USGS page talking about the benefits of volcano monitoring during the Mount Pinatubo eruption in 2012. I quote (and add emphasis):

    I assume there was some date cross-wiring going on…?

  8. Not to mention what could be brewing under Yellowstone…

  9. Holy Jesus – republicans ARE doomed.

  10. The super-caldera at yellow stone was the first thing to come to my mind when I heard this fool go on about evil federal spending.

    There’s only one thing scarier than a yellow stone eruption & that is a republican ticket in the whitehouse when it happends.

  11. *headdesk*

    No, good. Let the Republican party shoot themselves in the foot. Clearly they haven’t learned anything.

  12. Posted by LMR on February 25, 2009 at 9:01 pm

    The “Jindal/Palin 2012″ thing is a typo.

    It’s supposed to be “Jindal/Palin 20/12″ – it’s a listing of their respective IQs.

  13. @cthellis

    Thanks for point that out.

    I did this last night in my backyard without any light (looking for Lulin, I’m not that eccentric) and I was cold and hyped up on caffeine which might explain how that happened.

  14. Posted by molly on February 26, 2009 at 2:14 am

    Sure, Bobby, maybe you don’t have a lot of use for Volcano monitoring in LOUISIANA. Those of us that actually live near volcanos, on the other hand, think it’s pretty rad.

    I live in Washington State, where we don’t have a lot of personal use for Hurricane monitoring… that doesn’t mean I think it’s frivolous spending.

  15. Posted by Dave on February 26, 2009 at 11:45 am

    Jindal/Palin 2012

    Holy F*CK!!! Wasn’t 2012 predicted to be the end of the world? Could this be how it happens? =8^O

  16. [...] Fruit Flies and Volcanoes: Why Bobby Jindal and Sarah Palin Should Run in 2012 — Your friendly neighborhood GOP: still uniting morons at the polls and in office. (Snurched from Bad Astronomy Blog.) [...]

  17. Posted by energyguru on February 26, 2009 at 4:47 pm

    Jindal made me laugh whats not funny is battle Obama will have with the GOP to really getting green energy moving. We need new ideas here not just mainstream alternative enegry. I have read to interesting articles on new energy ideas. One talked about creating star power here on earth. The other was about a company working on a new cold fusion process. It’s called SuperWaveFusion. They have had some strong results and may be the break through we need for this possible energy source. Big Oil lines the pockets of GOP so they will fight this and other new ideas.

  18. $140 million is the whole budget of the whole USCGS. Volcano monitoring is a mere 10% of that, or $14 million.
    And if you know the story of Mt paracutin in mexico, you know that a volcano can spring up in your backyard practically overnight. Wouldn’t you like a little warning?

    What a GOP moron. Keep ‘em coming, they keep the Dems in office.

  19. I don’t know about that proposition, you sure that Mayan prophecy is not an allusion to both of those people running in office? The world could end at any time if those two are on power. :)

  20. A hilarious moment from some hot GOP on GOP action:

  21. If you ever want to hear a reader’s feedback :) , I rate this post for 4/5. Detailed info, but I just have to go to that damn msn to find the missed parts. Thanks, anyway!

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