Friday, September 23, 2005

Justifiable Paranoia

I wonder if you, dear readers, could help clarify something for me.

Didn't President Bush catch unshirted hell from the Extreme Media for (among other things) not cutting short his "vacation" and winging Air Force One straight down to the Big Easy to use his body as a levee plug? Hasn't he been trying to make up for that canard ever since, to the tune of five separate trips to the Bayou, last week's nationally televised address, and up to $200 billion in fresh deficit spending?

It's always seemed to me that staying out of the immediate way was the right thing to do. Impulsively bolting to New Orleans smacked of something that Bill Clinton would have done, in that it wouldn't have helped either survivors, evacuees, or first responders, might have hindered them, and would have been all about the President rather than bringing relief as soon as possible. Indeed, in Clinton's case the photo-op would have been intended to mask the hash his FEMA would have made of the relief effort.

Now here comes Hurricane Rita. And Bush is anywhere but at his ranch:

After President Bush briefed reporters on his intention to visit the area affected by Hurricane Rita as soon as possible, one reporter yelled, "Sir, what good can you do going down to the hurricane zone? Might you get in the way?"

Bush, who had already started walking away, turned around:

BUSH: We're going to make sure we're not in the way of the operations. What I am going to do is observe the relationship between the state and local government.

Then a reporter (possibly the same one) yelled, "Well, critics are saying this is an overcompensation for the response to Katrina."

This is precisely why it is pointless to heed these press jackals about anything. Last time he was "lollygagging in Crawford," now he's "getting in the way" - and they don't even credit him for genuinely compassionate motives, or even "learning from his mistake" of "ignoring" Katrina.

Ironically, just as Mr. Bill used every opportunity to put himself over, so the EM makes everything about bashing GDub - or, to modify a Shakespearean quote from Julius Ceasar, "They come to praise Clinton, and bury Bush."

An interesting post-script is that Bush decided to skip Texas and go directly to NORAD to keep watch as Rita makes landfall. See? He's on the job but not "getting in the way" after all.

But don't worry, the EM will find something wrong with that choice, too, before the day is out. All of which illustrates ad nauseum how the personal "hurricane" that Dubya drags around with him never goes away, and will last for another three and a half years.