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domingo, agosto 31, 2008

Bush And McCain's Greatest New Orleans Hits

Hurricanes aren't the only things that spiral out of control. Rethuglican politics spiral too. They go round and round and round, reprising their greatest hits, trying to revise and rewrite and edit out their greatest failures. Trying to help you forget.

Who doesn't remember this as Katrina was destroying New Orleans:

They cannot have that again. Oh, no. Not again with Gustav. So now, in an attempt to avoid a public display and incessant repetitions of their callousness, we have the new, "compassionate conservative" approach to approaching natural disasters. This from the New York Times:
Republicans scrambled on Sunday to change the tone of their national convention as delegates streamed into town amid scenes on TV of people fleeing Hurricane Gustav on the Gulf Coast. The White House said the monster storm would make President Bush's opening-day attendance unlikely.

The Republicans' nominee-in-waiting, John McCain, altered his campaign schedule to visit Jackson, Miss., with his running mate, Sarah Palin, to get briefings on the approaching storm. He was invited by Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour.

''I've been talking to all of [the Republican Governors in Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Florida],'' McCain said. He said the approaching storm had already put a cloud over the convention.

''It just wouldn't be appropriate to have a festive occasion while a near tragedy or a terrible challenge is presented in the form of a natural disaster,'' McCain said. Still, he said, ''I think that we are far, far better prepared than we were the last time.''

The Bush White House and Republicans in general are still shadowed by criticism of their handling of relief efforts in after Hurricane Katrina, which devastated New Orleans and parts of the Mississippi Gulf Coast three years ago. Party leaders fear that televised scenes of celebrations and partying at the convention could subject them to similar criticism now.
Last time, three years ago, Katrina was a horrendous embarrassment. Bush and McSame publicly ate cake. People died. The City was destroyed. Bush didn't arrive in the City until way too late, when people were beginning to paint x's on houses and counting the bodies and searching the attics. So now we have a new, more sanctimonious, more compassionate approach to impending natural disaster. The CiC stays visibly on the bridge of the ship of state, he appears to be in command, he appears to be concerned. He wrings his hands. And mini me McSame? He's concerned too. That's why Candidate Senator McSame needs to be "briefed" in Mississippi.

But wait a minute. Don't the Republican governors of these states and their staffs have enough to do just getting ready for the arrival of Gustav and the huge evacuation of people and the gigantic task of overseeing relief efforts? Why are they having ceremonial "briefings" with a guy who has absolutely nothing to do with safeguarding lives in the storm area? Why indeed. Because it looks "presidential?" Because it's better politically than getting McSame the f*ck out of the way and letting the people who are responsible for relief do their jobs? Because keeping McSame in the public eye is the most important thing?

And to whom is it that McCain is referring when he says that "we" are better prepared than last time? Is that a concession that he had something to do with the horror when Katrina arrived when "we" were unprepared and uncaring and eating birthday cake and oblivious? Oh no. Not that. When he was eating cake with Bush, it wasn't his responsibility that a city was drowning.

Bush, or at least his handlers, may have been slightly chastened by Katrina. Not. The Times continues:
With the storm expected to make landfall as early as Monday, it appeared unlikely that Bush would go to Minnesota, White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said Sunday.

She said alternate plans were being prepared. That could mean possible travel to the Gulf Coast and perhaps speaking to the convention by video.
Does that mean we're going to be treated at the Rethuglican Convention to a new and upgraded reprise of this memorable Bush sham:

I'm sure you remember. After the speech the lights went out again. And they stayed out. So much for recovery. So much for saving New Orleans after the Federal Flood.

I might be being unreasonable. Fine. So be it. I think that Katrina should be hung around the necks of the Rethuglicans like a rotting, dead skunk. To help them remember its smell. And I think that all of this fake, smarmy, "concern" about Gustav and how their "celebration" might appear is just plain garbage. Imo, they should just shut the f*ck up and quietly and unceremoniously provide the federal assistance that's going to be required. Without self congratulation. If they want to delay their convention for appearance sake, fine. But it's utterly revolting to hear them trying to get credit, get sympathy for that. "Oh, we just had to cancel our coronation party. Holding it would be so unseemly." Like they really care about New Orleans or the Gulf coast.

If they cared, wouldn't the levees be rebuilt by now? If they cared, wouldn't all of the people have returned? If they cared, wouldn't the homes be rebuilt? If they cared, wouldn't all of those living in FEMA trailers and housing be in different homes? If they cared, wouldn't the New Orleans Diaspora in Houston, and Memphis, and elsewhere be over? Face it. They don't care. Not a whit. They just want to grandstand.

Heckuva job, McSame.

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