“The Olive Fruit Fly has infested thousands of California olive groves and is the single largest threat to the U.S. olive and olive oil industries,” he said. “I secured $748,000 for olive fruit fly research and irradiation in the (fiscal year 2008) appropriations bill for the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The USDA will use some of that funding for their research facility in France. This USDA research facility is located in France because Mediterranean countries like France have dealt with the Olive Fruit Fly for decades, while California has only been exposed since the late 1990s. This is not uncommon; the USDA has several international research facilities throughout the world, including Australia, China and Argentina.”
So this is applied research into agricultural pests, something more than one southern Republican congressman has funded, and not basic research (not that there’s anything wrong with basic research).
But the key point is one that Tristero makes:
But what it really demonstrates is how unqualified the upper echelons of the Republican party are to run this country. She certainly didn’t write this speech: John McCain’s advisers did and approved every appalling word.
We need to get this right–this isn’t Palin, this is mainline Republican operatives doing this. This pig-headed, willful stupidity is institutional, not individual.