Damn Politician-Speak

december 23, 2003

In my university critical thinking class we were taught that we should think about and analyze what people say. Don't just accept something just because someone said it. And that this should go doubly so for politicians who seem to speak in all sorts of weird ways. Let me give you an example from today's news. The Bush administration is looking to make large SUVs (like those ginomous Hummer H2s) comply with federal fuel economy standards. Currently, because of their weight, those vehicles don't have to comply with the federal fuel economy standards (something to do with farmers), and it will be good to see that they are forced to comply. Those things are destructive to the environment. Anyways, Norman Y. Mineta, the Transportation Secretary of the United States of America is quoted as saying this to the issue of making large SUVs comply with federal fuel economy standards: "This marks the beginning of an important national dialogue. We can and must work together to save more fuel, increase passenger safety and protect American jobs." So, let me go through that again Mr. Mineta. By making large SUVs comply with the federal fuel economy standard we can "save more fuel", ah, yes, I can see how that would work. "Increase passenger safety", OK getting a little off track there Mr. Mineta, how is it that better fuel economy can make cars safer? No biggie, it is still automobile related. Then Mr. Mineta, you say that by making large SUVs comply with the federal fuel economy standard we can "protect American jobs." Err, how? What has fuel economy and American jobs have to do directly with each other? Yea, we know the economy is down and that American job security is a hot topic, but that statement is totally unrelated to fuel economy. Damn politician speak. Next time Mr. Mineta, try not to be such a politician, try to stay on topic, and for goodness sakes try not to treat the people you serve as idiots. We can see when you are trying to make yourself look good. And when it is as transparent as trying to throw in protecting "American jobs" into a discussion about fuel economy, that is just sad.

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