The Spectacle Blog

Of Fruit-Flies and Earmarks

By on 10.28.08 | 6:04PM

Scott Jaschik at InsideHigherEd calls up Congress for an explanation as to why Palin's musings about the silliness of fruit-fly research are unjustified:

A spokeswoman for Representative Thompson said that the earmark wasn’t some junket or silly project. Olive trees represent a growing agricultural enterprise in California, she said, and the olive fruit fly is the greatest danger posed to them. The problem has been widespread in Europe for years, but is just starting to appear in the United States.

Call me naive, but I think the point is that if an American industry is threatened by something, they probably have the resources (and the incentive!) to find out more about it. With all the money given to agriculture, I would assume they could probably afford pooling some money to hire a guy with a jar and a microscope.

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