RUSH: All right, one more thing about the bridge in Minneapolis. Everybody’s asking this question, ‘Can Congress solve our need for bridge repairs?’ Tom Sowell has a great piece today which actually inspired my forthcoming commentary on this. He said the incentives are all wrong. The incentives are not to fix things. The incentives for politicians are to start brand-new things, ribbon cutting ceremonies be it for the new old folks home, a new water treatment center, what have you. Have a big photo op, bring home the bacon, and that’s how you get reelected — and that is exactly right. So if we’re looking to the wrong bunch of people to fix the bridge, because fixing the bridge is not the expressed purpose here. Can Congress solve our need for bridge repairs? The answer could be ethanol, ladies and gentlemen. ‘What do you mean, Rush? I don’t follow you here. You already lost me. Ethanol?’ Yes, it’s corn. Liquid corn. Reconstituted corn. Self-sealing corn. Check the bridges; find the cracks; fill ’em with liquid corn; cover ’em with reconstituted corn, cement them with self-sealing corn. ‘Rush, what am I missing? What’s that going to do for the bridges?’
Nothing, folks. It won’t make a bit of difference to the bridge. But look what it will do for Congress! It will get farm votes: more uses for corn, more demand for corn, higher prices for corn. It will get labor votes because more uses for corn, all the liquid corn spreaders. You gotta have union guys to go out there and plug the cracks with the new liquid corn, reconstituted corn pasters and bricklayers, plasterers and so forth. ‘Rush, will that fix the bridges?’ No! That’s not the issue. When Congress gets involved with bridge repairs, repairing the bridge is not the issue. If you think solving the problem is the concern of Congress, you don’t understand politics. Sowell is right. It’s all about getting votes. If you think I’m making this you up, try this. This is from United Press International: ‘Jordanian scientists have discovered that potato chip flavoring can increase the longevity of concrete. Awni Al Otoom of the Jordan University of Science and Technology found that sodium acetate — the ingredient that helps give salt and vinegar-flavored potato chips a tangy snap — is the key to a new waterproof coating for concrete.’
You think I just dream all this stuff up? I see this, and I say, ‘Concrete can be protected by potato chip flavoring?’ Once our Congress gets hold of this, they’ll say, ‘Ethanol? Potatoes? Idaho? We need votes out of Idaho!’ There are any number of things. ‘Otoom and colleagues note that concrete … is so porous that water soaks in, corroding steel reinforcing bars and meshes that strengthen concrete roads and buildings. That, in turn, causes cracks as water expands and contracts during freeze-thaw cycles. I’m not going to get into this right now, but a former Clinton administration official, a current senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, a Clinton think tank, has tied the bridge collapse to global warming. I made a joke about this Friday. I made a joke about it on Friday when I had my first chance to talk about this: How long is it going to be before they blame global warming? A former Clinton administration official at the Clinton think tank, The Center for American Progress, has actually suggesting global warming is tied to the collapse of the bridge.