Congressman Sali informed us that a solution to the high price of gasoline
was to make petroleum from “all those trees in our forests.” Stunned by the
comment, I suffered a momentary regret for not taking that high school chemistry
class those many years ago. He continued by saying there ‘”could be up to 40
barrels of oil ” in a single tree.
You may think that this was a slip of the tongue, a random misquotation of one of the great thinkers of our time. I say, "Nay, nay." In 2006 Rep Sali said
"Forty percent of the mass of every tree in the forest is crude oil," he
said. Going after that, he said, "could put Idaho in the oil business for the
This is what happens when a man, prone to seeing all issues as black and white, gets a small piece of information. That piece of information becomes his point of expertise and he will ride it until it drops even in the face of overwhelming argument to the contrary. Sali doesn't begin to consider effects of his idea. All bad things fall away in the gelled lens of his vision.
Bill Sali isn't a big problem for the US. People who reason like he does, or fail to, are.