Volcano Monitoring = Wasteful Govt. Spending?
Remember last month when Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA) complained that the stimulus bill contained “wasteful government spending” like money to monitor volcanoes? Sure, the money to prevent catastrophes like levees breaking during hurricanes or the inability to evacuate people when a volcano erupts is not the biggest stimulus to the economy. But it was only a tiny amount and it DOES prevent the added economic problems of clean up after a natural disaster that does not get enough warning and prevention.
Alaska’s Mt. Redoubt was on the monitoring list. This weekend, Mt. Redoubt erupted. Repeatedly.
Does anyone know whether or not Gov. Jindal STILL thinks that was a wasteful use of taxpayer money?
UPDATE: Jindal’s office finally responds to questions about this, claiming that his criticism of volcano monitoring in the stimulus bill was only a criticism that this belonged in the regular budget, not in a bill designed to create jobs. Nice try, Bobby. Here’s the actual quote you said two months ago: While some of the projects in the bill make sense, their legislation is larded with wasteful spending. It includes . . . $140 million for something called “volcano monitoring.” Instead of monitoring volcanos, what Congress should be monitoring is the eruption of spending in Washington, D.C.
The volcano monitoring was thereby left out of the stimulus package and so no advance warning was given about Mt. Redoubt (now six eruptions six Saturday). The volcanic ash which can penetrate skin, motor vehicles, and even puncture aircraft, is drifting toward Juneau and Wasilla–without any monitoring. And the cleanup will be far costlier than if advance warning had been available. Gov. Jindal have you asked your fellow conservative Republican, Gov. Sarah Palin, what she thinks of your removal of this “wasteful spending” from the stimulus?
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