Like Shrimp On A Treadmill: Fox Scrambles To Connect Jell-O Wrestling To NSF StudyMay 27, 2011 2:14 PM EDT ››› MELODY JOHNSON
You read that correctly.
This morning on Fox & Friends, guest host Dave Briggs hosted Pete Sepp from the National Taxpayers Union to talk about Republican Senator Tom Coburn's report accusing the National Science Foundation of "mismanagement of taxpayers funds." The segment, in which Briggs listed off a series of studies which he deemed a "waste" of taxpayers' money without mentioning why the studies were actually conducted, concluded with Briggs saying: "I think we'd all like to hear why government money is going to Jell-O wrestling at the South Pole."
I'll field this one, Dave.
The event in question was a social event for employees of the Raytheon Polar Services Company (with which the NSF is associated) and, for reasons unknown, involved Jell-O wrestling. The employee who organized the event was later fired for the offense.
Indeed, the Jell-O wrestling was not part of an NSF study. It was part of a social event.
As Media Matters, has noted, Briggs attacked other NSF-funded studies by claiming that the NSF was funding shrimps to run on a treadmill and a robot to learn how to fold laundry. Both studies have an actual, based-in-science explanation for why they were conducted, but, of course, these facts couldn't get in the way of Fox & Friends' ginned up outrage.