BUSH DOES NEW ORLEANS. AGAIN.

Gosh, it’s nearly time for George W’s annual fly-in to New Orleans, where he’ll hold a photo-op and tell the hard-hit locals that he still feels their pain.

Gosh, it’s nearly time for George W’s annual fly-in to New Orleans, where he’ll hold a photo-op and tell the hard-hit locals that he still feels their pain.

I suppose that a fly-in is marginally better than a fly-over, which is all that the can’t-be-bothered president offered to New Orleanians after Hurricane Katrina in 2005. It took Bush eight days before he finally showed up in person, having been forced to make a show of concern after public outrage over his callousness reached the political boiling point. That’s when he uttered his now infamous comment – “Brownie, you’re doing a heck of a job” – that perfectly summed up his cluelessness and ineptness.

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Three years later, the Bushites continue to bumble and stumble while thousands either remain homeless or are housed in cramped FEMA trailers that turn out to be poisonous, especially for children. On July 20th, a congressional delegation that toured the still devastated area was stunned by the ongoing neglect. “Do we live in America?” asked one lawmaker, who added angrily that its time for FEMA to “stop looking at a manual and look at the people.”

Meanwhile, folks in the Crescent City can expect to see George show up for his annual visit around the late-August anniversary of Katrina. He’ll cluck his tongue about the people’s plight and tell them how hard he’s working to help them. Then he’ll fly away for another year.

The real problem that New Orleans has is that it’s not a bank. When Bear Stearns tanked this spring, and now that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are foundering, Bush didn’t fly over or fly in – he literally zoomed to the rescue of the big investors in those banks, committing more than $100 billion of tax payers’ dollars to shore them up from the disasters of their own bad investments. Those ardent free-marketers quickly became corporate socialists. The lesson here is clear: people get a photo-op, bankers get a bailout.

“Delegation struck by lingering N.O. need,” www.nola.com, July 21, 2008.

“Katrina Timeline,” www.thinkprogress.org, July 2008.

“Battling the bastards is about as much fun as you can have with your clothes on.”

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