Wow, what she said.
Here's What Gets MeRead the whole thing.
...My problem with Bush -- and here, I do indeed address Bush individually, as a guy -- is that during the time that the crisis was developing, from Monday to Friday, he never seemed to experience any actual sense of urgency as a result of the simple fact that people were, minute by minute and hour by hour, dying.
Let's give him the benefit of the doubt that he was being prevented from acting by bureaucracy and the sheer magnitude of the situation. Where are the stories of how he was in his office freaking the fuck out because there were tens of thousands of Americans trapped without food and water? Where's the story of how he ripped a strip off of somebody, demanding to know what the holy hell the holdup is getting water and food to those people?
Why is he even trying to shift blame to anyone else? Why isn't he wracked with such guilt, justified or not, that he can't stand up straight? How is it possible that late in the week, when it was so obvious that every safeguard meant to guard against just this kind of catastrophe had failed and he had failed every citizen of that city, he had the joviality to make jokes about his partying days in New Orleans? I'm not talking here about appropriateness or sensitivity, although both were obviously lacking, and there's been no apology for that, either. I'm wondering how it's possible that he felt that way. How was he not tormented? Because he wasn't. You can see that he wasn't. I would feel better if there were some report that he seemed, at some point... shaken. Upset. Angry. Desperate. Something. Something other than "on vacation" and then "lecturing emptily about how much help everyone's going to get, provided they haven't already died of dehydration, drowned, or committed suicide."
I want him to have been consumed with grief and sorrow at the dying that was ongoing, and he wasn't. I want him to have felt like a profound failure because an entire segment of the population of one of America's greatest cities was suffering and was at risk of starving to death, but he didn't. I want him to have been embarrassed when the FEMA director gave up the information that FEMA knew less about the convention center than CNN, but he wasn't. I want him not to have smirked his way through the entire experience, and he did.
No matter whose fault the slow relief effort was, the fact of the matter is that these are Americans, and this is their president, and the fact that they were homeless, starving, dying of thirst, and deprived of medication never once seemed to actually bother him.
I wish I'd written this. Because it conveys my sentiments exactly - well, some of them (the incompetence and cronyism would not be justified if a more empathic president were in charge). It's the sociopathic 'who cares?' attitude that the Bush Cultists either can't see or actually admire that I find the most repulsive about the current adminstration.