Dark Clouds Form Over White House

An editorial in Wednesday's Manchester Union Leader criticizes President Bush for "aloofness" in response to the Hurricane Katrina disaster:

As the extent of Hurricane Katrina’s devastation became clearer on Tuesday -- millions without power, tens of thousands homeless, a death toll unknowable because rescue crews can’t reach some regions -- President Bush carried on with his plans to speak in San Diego, as if nothing important had happened the day before.

Katrina already is measured as one of the worst storms in American history. And yet, President Bush decided that his plans to commemorate the 60th anniversary of VJ Day with a speech were more pressing than responding to the carnage.

A better leader would have flown straight to the disaster zone and announced the immediate mobilization of every available resource to rescue the stranded, find and bury the dead, and keep the survivors fed, clothed, sheltered and free of disease.

The cool, confident, intuitive leadership Bush exhibited in his first term, particularly in the months immediately following Sept. 11, 2001, has vanished. In its place is a diffident detachment unsuitable for the leader of a nation facing war, natural disaster and economic uncertainty.

Wherever the old George W. Bush went, we sure wish we had him back.

This kind of criticism would not be surprising from a liberal rag, but the Union Leader's a staunchly conservative paper that endorsed Bush in both 2004 and 2000. Insight magazine rated it one of the top five conservative papers in the country along with the Wall Street Journal, Washington Times, New York Post, and Daily Oklahoman.

I think it's safe to assume that President Bush's post-election political capital has all been spent, unless aides can find a little in coat pockets and couches around the White House.

Comments

C'mon, get serious. The fanatical, suicidal Japanese were the closest we've had to fight as a nation to the extremist terrorists and we as a nation need to be reminded that only a similar response now will succeed. Bush landing in New Orleans with the accompanying security requirements would have just caused more confusion and overloaded what little support staff was on hand. Give the guy a break,for Pete's sake!

I would like to agree with you, John. But if you were to think about any of the past presidents in recent years, Sr. included, they would have flown in, seen the damage and gone back to D.C. with a clear picture of the sheer devastation from this Hurricane. I think even he was only on the ground for 30 minutes, that would have helped his image and caused a minimal amount of disruption.

Noone was asking him to land near the Superdome or anywhere densely populated with survivors. There's hundreds of miles that were affected by this on the coast. He could have gone anywhere.

Looking at past treatment of third world (non-white) nations by the Bush administration, it might be better if President Chavez of Venezuela were to direct relief efforts. At least he can speak in sentences with subjects, verbs, direct objects and actually say something at the same time. Good Luck New Orleans

John, comparing the Japanese to terrorists is a huge mistake, and serves only to insult them. Let's not forget that while the Japanese were suicidal, they were committing an honorable act (death at the hands of the enemy) against enemy SOLDIERS, men who were willingly putting their lives on the line during a period of war.

Killing civilians for killing's sake is a dishonorable act in just about any culture, and well it should be. Modern extremist muslims kill civilians for the sole purpose of inspiring fear to achieve a political, not a military, gain. There's a difference, which a lot of people would see if they'd stop trying to put the world in terms of black and white.

Take a good America white America. Soon you'll be a minority and at the mercy of savages. All you do-gooders are going to get just what's coming to you!

John you are a simple minded bush apologist ass kissing fool and will believe anything a republican tells you, which is how they like it; they are the shepherds, you are the sheep.

Its really easy for you elitist media reporters and internet bloggers to armchair catastrophic events like this. Quit YOUR complaining, grab your gear and YOU go to the Gulf Coast. Why aren't YOU there right now? Spend some of your precious time AWAY from your computer actually benefitting your country.

Josh:
A)Most of us aren't qualified to help clean up a massive destruction. Were you in NYC after 9/11 digging through the rubble? How about Iran after the Bam earthquake? If you were, you're a better man than I. If not, then quit telling us we're drains on society.
B)I've given blood and 200 bucks, which is what I could spare, to the Red Cross, in the last two days. Again, can you say the same?

President Bush has no business getting himself and the secret service in the was down there. He flew over and I hear that he is going, which I think is a mistake, and has expressed his sympathy. He can learn all he needs to know from all the news helecopters hovering over and burning fuel. I can't believe yu people!

In times of crisis, the nation needs its president to reassure the public and provide a sense that matters are under control.

Bush's perfunctory speech and brief flyover weren't enough, as anyone can tell from following the news this afternoon.

Looters have attacked hospitals with axes and pipes to steal drugs. Doctors with no electricity and no food are moving hospital patients to higher floors to get away from looters, begging through the media for rescue. People are being raped in the Superdome, and when cops try to move into the building, mobs have fought them back.

It's a nightmare. Surely the president can marshal the resources necessary to bring order back to Louisiana and Mississippi and feed these desperate people. It's clear the leaders in Louisiana can't get it done.

Bush's lack of interest is appalling and will assure him a place in hell.

Houston is expecting over 10,000 victims from Hurricane Katrina to come to the city. It's not easy for them to find resources they need to get shelter. Here's one webpage listing resources on Houston real estate special pricing for victims from Hurricane Katrina www.houstonproperties.com including first month free rentals, furniture rentals, animal shelters and other resources.

To anyone who acts as an apologist for the WW2 Japanese Military:
What about Pearl Harbor?
What about The Rape of Nanking?
What about the Bataan Death March?
But still, I think the present crisis is more important!

George Bush is a pathetic excuse for a president. Promises, promises to the governor of Louisiana and the mayor of New Orleans but here it is 4 days out and no FEMA coordination, no Federal troops anywhere. They can't even figure out how to get people in there water for God's sake. His 100 IQ is really hurting him now. They can figure how to lie to go to war. But here on our shores, they can't find their asses from a hole in the ground. I hope he never crosses my path. I'd spit on him.

Oops, I forgot. He has done one thing. Released oil from the Federal Emergency Reserves so the "refineries" can keep on working...Ha, ha, ha....That's going to help those poor bastards in New Orleans.

How did the Japanese and terrorists figure into this? Because of Dubya's VJ day speech? I'm surprised anyone listens to him anymore. He didn't act on the information in Aug 2001, and sat like a simpleton on Sep 11. Then, Katrina comes in, after days of warning, and slams the Gulf Coast and he goes instead to San Diego and to Crawford before doing a fly-over to peer at the devastation from his couch aboard Air Force 1.
He robbed FEMA and the Army Corps of Engineers for his illegal war, so thousands are dead and dying because nothing was done to keep the levees intact, to plan for the rescue and recovery of the victims, and to help those unable to evacuate.
As usual his "action" was too little too late. It would be a refreshing change for this administration to act before a disaster rather than to react by grinning and saying it will be okay.

Brett, I'm not acting as an apologist for any of the attacks on helpless civilians or POWs, or surprise attacks on military targets, that the Japanese military made in WW2. I'm just saying that kamikaze attacks aren't the same as terrorist bombers blowing up a cafe.

At least we agree on one thing, though: this crisis is a far more important thing to focus on than trying to determine whether one enemy is worse than another.

Bush is the worst President ever. I cant wait till his term is over!!

I have nothing but disgust for Mr.Bush and the traitors in his cabinet

Just looky at how the appologists can't defend this guy any more. He is off his rocker and always has been, tho now more of the 'Fundi' Christians are taking their heads out of theri butts and seeing what has always been there. Trust fund, Frat boy, without a speck of talent.

It's time to cut and run from Iraq. It
is far more important to win the war at
home than to win it overseas. A president who abandons his citizens on
the homefront to fight a war on foreign
soil is a traitor, and that's just what
Bush is.

President Bush and most members of the Republican party are liars. THEY ARE LIARS. For Bush to say that no one could have predicted the breach of the levees is a lie. IT'S A LIE. Why is no one in the media or in the government stating this very clear fact? Oh, that's right, as one pundit said "Everyone knows he's a liar so it's not news." I'm sorry but there is still at least 41% of the country that does not know that he is a LIAR. Get a spine and say it now!

Even if you accept the argument that it would have disruptive for Bush to be on the ground in the disaster area...

He could have cancelled his golf game...
He could have forgone the VJ day speech...
He could have given up the guitar photo op
He could have called Condi back to Washington from her Broadway show and shoe shopping in NYC

He is elected as the LEADER, and he ain't cutting it.

Hell, he's got a place in Texas he ain't using right now... he could offer to take in more than a few refugees at that vacation home he calls a "ranch." Maybe they could even clear some brush for him in return for 3 hots and a cot.

Bush coming or not coming is just a small part of the issue that raises thought of how Bush failed in this emergeny. My concern is the slow response. The days prior the hurricane hitting the area, every report about Katrina told the worst case scenario of the city flooding from levee's that were not made to sustain the category 5. So all contignency plans should have been set up for that. Common sense!! If you know in the morning its going to rain you prepare for the scenario and grab your umberlla and have it in your and so when it drizzles you spread the umbrella to conatin the problem. However when Katrina hit the levee's didnt break immediately. That probaly shocked some people but there wasn't any immediate response then. Its like the world waited a day to see if it would flood. Today is friday and the small first phase of the rescue is now being started. This is what all plans would have expected so this is what have planned for and should have responded immediately. Hey its raining and we knew open the umbrella. So either Bush failed in recognizing the inevitability of the situation and responding. Or this is what was wanted? I don't know thats what has me searching. This by anyones account is a slow reaction and even admitted by Bush this morning but its an even slower response considered they knew it would happen if the hurricane hit. They new this a week ago. So he failed this and lives are lost. This will become a divisive, political issue, when the bottom line is this is the biggest humanitarian tragedy this country has ever seen and Bush dropped the ball. He did not for the psychological, compassionate, or hopeful-purposes feel it important to step foot on that soil to give hope who need leadership and direction. Thats the effect that your commander and chief portrays to the victims and the world that everything is ok. These are very sad days.

Bush coming or not coming is just a small part of the issue that raises thought of how Bush failed in this emergeny. My concern is the slow response. The days prior the hurricane hitting the area, every report about Katrina told the worst case scenario of the city flooding from levee's that were not made to sustain the category 5. So all contignency plans should have been set up for that. Common sense!! If you know in the morning its going to rain you prepare for the scenario and grab your umberlla and have it in your and so when it drizzles you spread the umbrella to conatin the problem. However when Katrina hit the levee's didnt break immediately. That probaly shocked some people but there wasn't any immediate response then. Its like the world waited a day to see if it would flood. Today is friday and the small first phase of the rescue is now being started. This is what all plans would have expected so this is what have planned for and should have responded immediately. Hey its raining and we knew open the umbrella. So either Bush failed in recognizing the inevitability of the situation and responding. Or this is what was wanted? I don't know thats what has me searching. This by anyones account is a slow reaction and even admitted by Bush this morning but its an even slower response considered they knew it would happen if the hurricane hit. They new this a week ago. So he failed this and lives are lost. This will become a divisive, political issue, when the bottom line is this is the biggest humanitarian tragedy this country has ever seen and Bush dropped the ball. He did not for the psychological, compassionate, or hopeful-purposes feel it important to step foot on that soil to give hope who need leadership and direction. Thats the effect that your commander and chief portrays to the victims and the world that everything is ok. These are very sad days.

This is 'WATERLOO' for the Oil Mafia, the illegal Junta in the White House. Katrina exposed how they have gutted the US's economy with their OIL WAR!!! FIFTH most highly rated neo-con rag critizes the Chief Thug in those terms, the dance is OVER!! I only hope the poor, black people riot all over those smug, neo-cons.

GLUG, GLUG, GLUG, GOING DOWN!!!!! so fitting it is also water that will take them down. Sewer water.

Give the President a chance.

I've been to many boards aside from this one and all have one thing in common. 90% of the comments are anti Bush. Which leads me to conclude that the majority of all those comments reflect exactly why the Republicans are and will continue to be in power for many years, perhaps decades.

While the Democrats/Liberals waste time sophmorically bitching and whining about how evil Bush and the Rep party are, Republicans are out there busy acting, doing and making a difference in this country.

They realize mistakes are made in every administration wether it's slow response to disasters or faulty intelligence etc..Unlike Dems/Libs that want to use every mistake to beat this president over the head with a political club.

It is so typical..No solutions or ideas, just Monday morning quarterbacking and politicizing everything into an anti Bush rant. It's truly pathetic.

So continue with your childish and idiotic "Bush is evil" or "Bush lied people died" posts and leave the business of running the country to us grown-ups.

Part of being a grown-up is taking responsibility. President Bush ran on a re-election campaign that heavily emphasized he would make the country safer from disaster than his opponent.

Will anyone in his administration take responsibility for failing to do that this week?

Just once, I'd like to see someone in the Bush White House say directly "I made a mistake," rather than the passive statement "mistakes were made."

The presidency has come a long way since "the buck stops here" leadership of Harry S Truman. Most of it downhill.

Observing the post natural disaster disaster unfold has been illuminating for me. I am left with the distinct impression that our leaders are unprepared to lead in times of true homeland based crisis.
I am both disturbed and disgusted by what I have seen and what I have learned during the days since Katrina passed through the gulf. What happened to our internal disaster response infrastructure?
It leads me to question if one truly exists.
It has taken over 5 days to begin addressing this disaster, meanwhile our POTUS and the US Congress apparently sitting on their respective vacationing thumbs, allowed people to simply die. We, the USA, have been on the ready for such events for decades, able to provide assistance, food and shelter to countries far accross the globe within hours of any event.
Observing our Conservative leadership when they rose to the defense of Terri Shiavo's life by returning to congress early late one Sunday night to enact special legislation in order to help one defenseless human life, I thought I was observing people of deep compassion and conviction. Sadly, it appears that was not the case.
I am very disturbed by the decision to not apply the same conviction and principal for the tens if not hundreds of thousands of truly helpless citizens who were desparately in need of real leadership and guidance.

What has been allowed to transpire to date in New Orleans alone, for whatever reason, is our greatest national disgrace.

"The cool, confident, intuitive leadership Bush exhibited in his first term, particularly in the months immediately following Sept. 11, 2001, has vanished. In its place is a diffident detachment unsuitable for the leader of a nation facing war, natural disaster and economic uncertainty"

Is little GW back on the sauce?

To All USA Citizens & Voters,

I have told you for two elections now- This man (Bush) and his (??team??) are those who have fried their brains. There is no way this administration in total can represent me. My brain has not been stressed and I can think for myself. To think this is the best the republicans can offer is says it all!

Now it comes out how what Bush has done and will do to this country, you
all voted him to pillage and destroy this beautiful country. It will not surprise me if he can ever be defeated and stopped it is too late, they are at the "Let them eat cake " stage and
we have just begun to see how evil they are. Well drink up the KOOLAID, remember God talks to Bush.
We tried to tell you alll.
Sorry for us alll

i live in jackson, ms, and have been to new orleans more times than i can count. it was an incredible city, beautiful, full of history, architecture, rich in culture, wonderful people and the birthplace of jazz. it truly saddens me to know that the new orleans i love will most likely never be the same again. with that said i must comment on the pitiful response by the bush administration to this disaster. it amazes me to think that tens of thousands of stranded people, thirsty, and hungry are left to fend for themselves for so long without any kind of help from the federal govt. the dept of homeland insecurity has failed miserably to secure the homeland and the ineptitude of those in charge is appaling. if it takes the president and his administration this long to react to the predicted devastation created by a hurricane we watched strengthen in the gulf for days, why should i think they have an effective plan for when terrorists create the next disaster? my entire gulf coast is gone, wiped off the map, my new orleans is under water, and the president is out of his fucking mind.

This President is a WAR President folks you don't think he has time for any of us do u? he's busy fighting a WAR and clearing shrubs at his ranchero 8 weeks of the year.

The death and the dying that I feel Dubya and his administration have brought to us and the rest of the world, will just keep going on. I'm not saying anyone is responsible for a hurricane. But watching the response in the aftermath is truly frightening.

For a moment, use your imagination. The weather around the world seems to be getting more extreme. Living in the Northeast, we may likely have a heck of a winter coming our way this year. A blizzard, lack of heating oil at an affordable price, waiting for the government to get supplies to us.........? It's not a pretty picture.

One thing the government won't have to worry about here will be providing refrigerated trucks to keep our bodies from decaying. They'll be able to stack us up and wait until spring to deal with us. That will give them plenty of time to handle that crisis.

I'm watching the America I love being destroyed by a group of Neo Con fanatasists, and I am not happy about it. But, their hold on this country is so strong, I'm not sure that anything will ever change. I feel sad when I hear others in the world blame the average American for this. We didn't all vote for Dubya. As far as I can tell, a lot who did would like to be rid of him, now that they see how badly they were lied to.

St. Augustine wrote

The City of God

It is a Light to the World

Let us sing Praise unto the Lord

Hallowed be His Name.

Come and Drink the Water of

Life Everlasting, and the Milk of human

Kindness.

Forever and ever

Amen

Brothers and Sisters,

George W. Bush

Has Launched a Savage Attack

On the Environment of the

United States.

It is Time,

That We the People

Of the United States of America

Assert Our Right

To Breathe Clean Air

And Drink Pure Water.

Justice Demands It.

Let Us Pray Together

And Consult The Great Spirit

Of the World.

Babylon Must Fall.

Call me.

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