JACK SPENCER: Candid ‘April Fools’ statements we’d love to hear
Considering the craziness of the modern world, April Fool’s Day might be the most underrated date on the calendar. At least on that one day of the year when people say misleading things or tell fibs they quickly explain that it was only a joke by announcing: “April Fools.”
It could be of benefit to broaden that concept and apply it retroactively to cover utterances, misinformation and missteps of the past as well as ongoing hypocrisy. Spiking several punch bowls with sodium pentothal (the truth serum) would be a helpful touch, too. If we could somehow pull that off, the following is what we might expect to hear.
Starting close to home:
Michigan Economic Development Corporation official —
“We really believed in the job creation figures we used to put out in our press releases. It is unfortunate that they kept being proven to have overestimated the actual number of jobs by about 80 percent. A couple of years ago we abandoned the practice of reading chicken bones and counting the number of maggots on rotting pumpkins as a means of tabulating our estimates. Everything is cool now me; trust me.”
Manmade Global Warming advocate —
“Actually, we sincerely thought manmade global warming was causing the Great Lakes to dry up. How could we have guessed that by 2014 Great Lakes water levels would rise back to slightly above average levels? It’s a drag; can you imagine how difficult it will be to argue that manmade global warming is causing a severely average impact on the planet?
May 5 statewide proposal campaign —
“We might have screwed up by saying the sales tax increase is needed the make roads around the state safer for Michigan drivers. At least the polling we’re seeing on the proposal indicates that might not have been our best approach. I always suspected that an ad about pedestrians vanishing in massive potholes would have been more effective.”
Wind Energy Advocate —
“If true-believing rank and file people in the environmental movement ever figure out that wind energy is actually powered 70 percent of the time by natural gas, they’ll have to make some tough decisions. Will they stop protesting against fracking, stop going to pro-wind rallies, or just forget about the whole thing and stay home?
Former speechwriter for former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm —
“When, we wrote the 2006 State of the State Address in which she told Michigan residents ‘you’re gonna be blown away,’ honest, it really wasn’t a reference to the $9.38 billion in corporate welfare tax credits we were about to hand out that are now coming due and hitting taxpayers right in their wallets. Heck; like virtually everyone else in politics, we never thought very much about long term ramifications.”
A whole lot of businesses and business groups —
“Philosophically we are absolutely committed to free market principles and getting government off our backs. But we’re not about to let a little thing like that stop us from lobbying for corporate welfare and giving campaign contributions to politicians who support it.”
Mainstream Michigan news media —
“We absolutely refuse to allow the fact that we get advertisements from PureMichigan to impact our news coverage. We will never allow that to happen — never, never, never... at least not very much.”
The conservative base —
“We’re going to blow it again; I can just feel it. Maybe we need to stop encouraging conservatives to run for president and start encouraging them to get together and play poker. They could agree ahead of time that the candidate who wins the most in the poker game will be the one and only conservative to stay in the race. That might be the only chance we’ll have to get a conservative nominated. How come we never had these problems back when Ronald Reagan was running?”
On just manmade global warming —
John Cook, source of the claim that 97 percent of climate scientists say they believe in manmade global warming: “Hey, I was just doing my job at the University of Queensland, in Australia. It wasn’t my fault everybody took my study notes seriously. I reviewed the abstracts of 11,000 papers on manmade global warming and found that 66.4 percent took the sensible and responsible scientific approach of taking no position on the issue. Of the remaining 32.6 percent, 97 percent said they believed in manmade global warming. It was 97 percent of the 32.6 percent that took a position — not 97 percent overall. Don’t blame me for how the manmade global warning crowd distorted things. Gee whiz; that phony number even got mentioned during U.S. presidential elections.”
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change —
“How were we supposed to know there would be a 17-year pause in global warming? Even if our projections were off by 95 percent, that five percent shouldn’t be disregarded. We explain it all in our latest report on our climate change models. It’s 218 pages and it was carefully prepared. We even used to word ‘uncertain’ 117 times and ‘error’ or ‘errors’ 192 times. You know, we never once claimed those projection were supposed to actually predict anything.”
Al Gore —
“It didn’t occur to me, when I stood before that huge graph showing the correlation between CO2 and warmer temperatures, that it might be the warmer temperatures that caused the CO2 increases instead of the other way around.”
Jack Spencer is Capitol Affairs Specialist for Capitol Confidential, an online newsletter associated with the Mackinac Center for Public Policy (MCPP). MCPP provides policy analysis. The political analysis represented in this column does not necessarily reflect the views of the Mackinac Center.