"1600 Pennsylvania Avenue" host David Shuster on Wednesday delighted in a comparison of Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal to the MTV characters Beavis and Butt-head. Shuster singled out the Republican, who gave the GOP response to Barack Obama's February 24 congressional address, for his "hypocrisy watch" segment.
The MSNBC host slammed "Jindal's hypocrisy" for criticizing what he called wasteful spending, including volcano monitoring. (According to Shuster, Jindal is a hypocrite because, while the governor attacked volcano monitoring, he's also asked for comprehensive flood and hurricane funds for his own state.) The anchor gleefully recounted an attack by liberal New York Times writer Paul Krugman: Reading from Krugman's column, he recited, "The intellectual incoherence is stunning. The party of ideas has become the party of Beavis and Butt-head." Agreeing with the juvenile insult, Shuster added, "Beavis and Butthead? Well, Krugman didn't say which one Jindal is. Nonetheless, all of us at '1600' agree with the larger point."
Shuster concluded his commentary by asserting, "Governor Jindal, when you ask the federal government to help protect your state against natural disasters and then you criticize the federal government for trying to protect other states, that's hypocrisy, and it's wrong."
A transcript of the February 25 segment, which aired at 6:25pm, follows:
DAVID SHUSTER: Last night in his Republican response to the President's address, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal criticized some of the spending in the President's economic recovery plan. And that takes us to tonight's "hypocrisy watch." First, the background. Governor Jindal last night took issue with the $787 billion bill that was signed last week and he described several spending items as wasteful.
BOBBY JINDAL: And $140 million for something called volcano monitoring. Instead of monitoring volcanoes, what Congress should be monitoring the eruption of spending in Washington, D.C.
SHUSTER: First of all, monitoring active volcanoes helps local governments in Alaska and Hawaii get people out of the way when the time comes. It also helps those communities minimize damage. Secondly, just six months ago, Governor Jindal urged Congress and the Bush administration to allocate hundreds of millions of dollars for hurricane protection. In a letter to congressional leaders, Jindal wrote, quote, "It is critical that we provide comprehensive flood and hurricane protection including both coastal restoration and levee protection for Louisiana's entire coast." New and improved levees for Louisiana's entire coast? Governor Jindal acknowledged his request would cost $100 million. Engineers said it would be a billion dollars. Now, there's nothing wrong with building hurricane levees for Louisiana or monitoring volcanoes in Hawaii and Alaska.. Both programs create jobs and serve the greater good by possibly saving lives. The problem is Jindal's hypocrisy. Today, Nobel Prize winning- Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman wrote, "The intellectual incoherence is stunning. The party of ideas has become the party of Beavis and Butt-head." Beavis and Butt-head? Well, Krugman didn't say which one Jindal is. Nonetheless, all of us at "1600" agree with the larger point. Governor Jindal, when you ask the federal government to help protect your state against natural disasters and then you criticize the federal government for trying to protect other states, that's hypocrisy, and it's wrong.