Little-known fact: Gov. Bobby Jindal‘s great-grandfather, Rakesh Jindal, was a passenger on the Titanic’s ill-fated voyage in 1912. Turns out that Rakesh was strolling on the deck that evening, enjoying the cool North Atlantic air, when he spied the enormous iceberg which the ship would hit a few minutes later.
Rakesh, however, didn’t report the iceberg to the ship’s crew. One crew member, a Mr. Christie, later told the U.S. Senate investigating committee that he remembered speaking with Rakesh, who simply told him, “Wonderful voyage. Wouldn’t change a thing. Your captain seems to be a lovely fellow.”
At that, Rakesh ducked inside for his dinner. A few minutes later, the ship rammed the iceberg.
Afterwards, as he and several other passengers were bobbing around in a lifeboat, watching the magnificent vessel slip below the cold Atlantic waters, a frantic Rakesh began shouting to his fellow survivors, “I saw the whole thing coming! I saw the iceberg! We must never let this happen again. The crew must be punished. The captain banished. Laws must be passed.”
One survivor, a Mr. McDonnell, told the Senate’s investigators that there was a near-revolt onboard the life boat. Most of the angry survivors wanted to toss Rakesh into the frigid waters. His life was spared only because, soon thereafter, the rescue ship Carpathia arrived to save Rakesh — who would later change his name to “Skippy” — and his outraged fellow survivors.
One hundred years later, in the election of 2012, history, in a way, repeated itself in the Jindal family.
Of course, we know that Rakesh’s great-grandson, Bobby Jindal, became governor of the Great State of Louisiana. In his capacity as a Republican governor, Jindal eagerly traversed the country in support of the presidential campaign of Mitt Romney.
From his perch onboard the USS GOP, Jindal went from state to state, eagerly touting all the ways the Republican Party was ideally suited to address the problems of the United States and its people. Nary a critical or introspective word about the GOP ship crossed his lips. According to Jindal, the ship’s captain, Mr. Romney, was, in particular, a most wonderful and able leader. This sentiment he eagerly conveyed to anyone who would listen.
But, of course, the GOP ship struck an iceberg. And it sank. Bobby Jindal, a survivor like his great-grandfather, found his way into a lifeboat and did not go down with the ship.
But Jindal, as we now know, saw the iceberg long before anyone else.
Jindal clearly saw that party leaders were out of touch with the concerns of middle-income Americans. He clearly observed how deeply women voters were offended by the reckless rape talk of GOP Senate candidates. He spotted clearly all the troubles — the electoral iceberg — that sank the GOP ship and, with it, Captain Romney’s campaign.
And from his lifeboat, Jindal gave an interview to Politico transcriber Jonathan Martin, in which he told readers all about the iceberg that he saw but never mentioned until the USS GOP had slipped below the waters of the roiling ocean.
“It is no secret we had a number of Republicans damage our brand this year with offensive, bizarre comments — enough of that,” Jindal said in the Politico transcription. “It’s not going to be the last time anyone says something stupid within our party, but it can’t be tolerated within our party. We’ve also had enough of this dumbed-down conservatism. We need to stop being simplistic, we need to trust the intelligence of the American people and we need to stop insulting the intelligence of the voters.”
Wouldn’t it have been nice if Jindal had thought to point out all those menacing icebergs when it might have saved the ship?
But, unlike the Titanic’s survivors and their reaction to Rakesh, Jindal’s fellow survivors did not move to punish Jindal’s failures by trying to toss him from their lifeboat. Instead, they rewarded him with the chairmanship of the Republican Governors Association.
And the elite news media — eagerly transcribing his every word and portraying him as a serious and visionary leader — never bothered to ask why, if he saw the disaster coming, he didn’t simply shout, “Iceberg on the port side!”
(On second thought, I’m not sure if the first part of my story is true. I could be wrong. I don’t think Jindal’s great-grandfather was named Rakesh. And I doubt he was on the Titanic. But, like Politico, I’ll leave it to astute readers to figure out the truth for themselves.)
- Creationist Gov. Bobby Jindal Calls for the GOP to Stop Being Stupid (littlegreenfootballs.com)
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- Gov. Bobby Jindal to Romney: I couldn’t disagree more! (tv.msnbc.com)
- Bobby Jindal Takes On GOP On CNN: ‘We Don’t Win Elections By Insulting Voters’ (mediaite.com)
- Bobby Jindal Wants You To Know That He’s Running For President In 2016, Guys (huffingtonpost.com)
- Jindal Etch-a-Sketches and Slams Himself In Process (dailykingfish.com)
- It Looks Like We Have Our First Contender For The GOP 2016 Nomination (businessinsider.com)