Every great disaster - the Blitz, 9/11, the tsunami - has a political dimension. The performance of George Bush during this past week has been outrageous. [...]PLEASE read the whole thing.
This president, who flew away on Monday to fundraisers in the west while the hurricane blew away entire towns in coastal Mississippi, is very much his father's son when it comes to the kinds of emergencies that used to call forth immediate White House action before its Bushite captivity. When he was president, his father did not visit Miami after Hurricane Andrew, nor for that matter, did he mind being photographed tooling his golf cart around Kennebunkport while American troops died in the first Iraq war. Now the younger Bush seems determined to show his successors how to holiday through an apocalypse. [...]
As for the Superdome refugees, it finally fell to the governor of Texas to announce that they could come to Houston's Astrodome. What other American president, one wonders, would fail to house these people in the decent barracks available at the closed and active military bases scattered throughout the South? The plain fact is that Jimmy Carter did a better job of housing the Mariel refugees from Cuba than Bush has done with the citizens of New Orleans.
The populism of Huey Long was financially corrupt, but when it came to the welfare of people, it was caring. The church-going cultural populism of George Bush has given the United States an administration that worries about the house of Saud and the welfare of oil companies while the poor drown in their attics and their sons and daughters die on foreign deserts.
Thursday, September 01, 2005
Howell Raines summing up Katrina & our national "leadership" better than I could ever hope to ...
This blog has been a little quiet in the week of Katrina, but I have to quote at length from Howell Raines' "I'm just glad I saw it" in today's Guardian :