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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Scientists: East Coast quake may have been Obama's Fault

Newly discovered seismic zone named after current President could have sparked tremor, say geologists

Grinan Barrett
La Lune de la presse internationale


A recently discovered fault along the East Coast named for President Obama is believed to be responsible for the earthquake that jolted East Coast residents yesterday afternoon. At a press conference Wednesday morning scientists relayed the details about the newly located subduction zone and other observations to the La Rochelle Times. Washington insiders were quick to respond.

"We were almost certain this was Obama's Fault from the start," said Congressional Republican Warren Eirack. "As soon as I felt the ground start shaking I thought to myself, you know, if it hadn't been for this administration, this would never have happened."

Scientists were more hesitant to say it was entirely Obama's Fault, stating that it could have been a combination of faults that led to the unexpected tremor.

"Any unexpected shake-up of the status quo, whether it be a minor tremor or a major terrestrial upheaval, is usually the result of a combination of factors," said geologist Anna Thema. "It's easy to say it was Obama's Fault. While that may be somewhat true, the reality is it was probably a complex chain of events that led to this unusual event. If we truly want to understand the phenomenon, we have to get past saying it was Obama's Fault and look at the other faults present within the same system."

Some Republicans were nonplussed after hearing Thema's remarks.

"Regardless of what the people who believe in evolution think, the truth is undeniable. This event was still primarily Obama's Fault," retorted Eirack after the press conference. "Obviously something could have been done sooner, and nothing was. Here we are giving money to these fundamentalist scientific extremists, and all they can do is say, 'hey lookie here we found ourselves a nice new subduction zone.' Well woopdie [frickin'] do! I don't know about my colleagues but I'll be the first to cut funding to these Pagan circle dancers if they don't own up, admit it was Obama's Fault and try and do something about it."

Obama's Fault was fully mapped in early 2009, after geologists had launched an initiative to locate new faults along the East Coast. Throughout the 20th century known seismic lines along the East Coast had been referred to as "white faults," but geologists had long suspected there were a number of inconspicuous "black faults" as well. Harder to locate and more difficult to discern, the black faults had sometimes appeared in data measurements but they had never been officially located and mapped into the system.

In late 2008, all of that changed when Thema and her colleagues finally pinpointed the location of the first black fault. Named after the then President-elect, the new black fault was studied in order to determine what its behavior would be in the future. By April 2009 they had most of it figured out.

"We knew by then it would behave pretty much like the older white faults," said Thema. "There's really no difference, other than some superficial outward appearances. But on the inside they act pretty much the same. When they're ready to cause problems, black or white it's all the same. We actually felt pretty sheepish after the fact. It's pretty naive to think we could find a fault line that would behave differently than all the others. Fault lines are all on crack, as we like to say."


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