Posted on Saturday 28 June 2008

ThinkProgress treats us to an amazing example of republican-ese:

While serving in Congress in August 2006, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) slammed the Bush administration for its response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Jindal said the state suffered “trauma” from the “widespread incompetence of the federal, state and local government response.”

But yesterday on Fox News, it was Jindal who was displaying Katrina incompetence. Making a push for expanded offshore oil drilling, Jindal repeated the myth that Hurricanes Katrina and Rita caused “no major” oil spills in the state. Jindal called it a “great unwritten success story”:
    QUESTION: Real fast, Governor, the price of oil went up five bucks a barrel today. You’ve been drilling off the coast of Louisiana for a number of years. Any oil spills to worry about?
    JINDAL: You know, that’s one of the great unwritten success stories, after Katrina and Rita, these awful storms, no major spills.
Jindal is clueless about the reality in his own state. As noted in the Wonk Room, the Hurricanes caused offshore oil spills so large that they could be seen from space…
The current Talking Point is that a solution to the high gas prices is to start off-shore drilling and drill in Alaska. Besides the fact that it takes a long time to set such things up, we have a paltry oil reserve compared to the fact that we consume 25% of the fossil fuel produced, and oil spills are common with such practices. Governer Jindal is jumping on the Talking Point bandwagon, throwing the truth to the wind [I guess the reason it’s an "unwritten success story" is that it didn’t happen]. McCain jumped on this Talking Point last week and his statement is even more telling about republican-ese:

Last week, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) reversed his longstanding opposition to offshore drilling, just before cozying up to energy industry leaders in Houston. McCain claimed his flip-flop would “address the concerns of Americans, who are struggling right now to pay for gasoline.” At a townhall event in Fresno, CA, yesterday, McCain admitted that it wouldn’t provide any “immediate relief” but said there would be “psychological” benefits:
    I don’t see an immediate relief, but I do see that exploitation of existing reserves that may exist — and in view of many experts that do exist off our coasts — is also a way that we need to provide relief. Even though it may take some years, the fact that we are exploiting those reserves would have a psychological impact that I think is beneficial.
To paraphrase McCain, increased off-shore drilling won’t solve anything but it might make the gullible American people feel better. This is the kind of thinking that we’ve heard before – the American people won’t feel good about our unilaterally invading Iraq to gain access to their oil and as a base for other Middle Eastern operations, so let’s just tell them that we’re after Weapons of Mass Destruction and that Saddam Hussein is allied to al Qaeda. They’ll feel better about it.

We don’t need any more ego-massages from our government, we need actual solutions to actual problems and a true reading on what the problems really are…

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