Bob McElvaine has published some thoughts on the handling of the Katrina disaster: Bush 'damage control' can't gloss travesty Jackson Clarion-Ledger 09/09/05.
This is not about politics. Republican Gov. Rick Perry of Texas deserves praise for his great efforts to take in huge numbers of people displaced by the storm. It is about people suffering and dying because of the incompetence, indifference and irresponsibility of the Bush administration. Have the gullible people who blame "liberal Democrats" not noticed all the criticism of the administration coming from Republican politicians, The Wall Street Journal, and even Fox News?
The governor of Louisiana and the mayor of New Orleans are at fault? Did the people who let the administration move their lips not see Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin pleading for the federal government to send in assistance?
Who has argued the federal government is a beast that must be starved? Who is it that slashed the budgets of the agencies that would have strengthened the levees? Who is it that sent the National Guard to Iraq? Who is it that put a clueless man in charge of FEMA?
Even Trent Lott, who has mostly sung the praises of Dear Leader Bush in the Katrina crisis, has been moved to some criticism:
... according to Republican U.S. Sen. Trent Lott, earlier this week had 20,000 trailers desperately needed in Mississippi "sitting in Atlanta" because the agency wouldn't release them until contracts were signed.
Bob is fed up with Bush and those who foolishly make excuses for him, even in a situation like this:
We've been hearing a lot about zero-tolerance. Here's my new zero tolerance policy: Zero tolerance for anyone gullible enough to continue to support the most incompetent, irresponsible, lying, indifferent — and, yes, un-Christian ("For I was hungry and you gave me no food . . .") - president in American history.
Criticizing such incompetence, which leaves us vulnerable to attack as well as natural disaster, is not partisan; it is patriotic. It is covering up those failings that is partisan and unpatriotic.
His label of "un-Christian" is obviously meant to be a criticism of Bush for not meeting the standards of the religion he so proudly professes.
But at another level, the self-righteousness that the Christian Right seems to reinforce in Bush surely contributes to his sense that he can do no wrong. And to the feeling that anyone who criticizes him is dastardly and evil.