Friday, September 09, 2005

future perfect

it's only a matter of time before facts and pictures lie only in memory and circumlocution, slander, parsing, and finger-pointing from republicans leave the whole new orleans damage control debacle a hazy memory in the minds of the public.

in three months' time the american people will be mezmerized by headlines about missing white girls or celebrity scandals while all those displaced people, so poor and so black, will be left without a home. one of our nation's most multicultural and tolerant cities will be gone and the vice president's private contractor friends will get taxpayer money to develop and rebuild. but, like in iraq, they won't.

journalists are already being precluded from taking pictures of dead bodies, the count of which will no doubtedly be understated. very similar to the government's policy of not allowing pictures of coffins returning from iraq isn't it? i detect a recurring theme with our "elected" officials, our "leadership", our always-requiring-quotation-marks dictators.

and speaking of quotation marks here are a few statements about the tragedy that are representative of the situation and the republican mindset:

  • "Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality. And so many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this, this is working very well for them," - former first lady barbara bush, referring to evacuees in the houston astrodome
  • "You have people who don't heed those warnings and then put people at risk as a result of not heeding those warnings. There may be a need to look at tougher penalties on those who decide to ride it out and understand that there are consequences to not leaving." - senator rick santorum (r), pennsylvania
  • "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job" - president bush, to f.e.m.a. director michael brown on his handling of the disaster (michael brown was today replaced as head of the cleanup "effort")
  • "I don't think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees." - president bush
  • "George Bush doesn't care about black people" - kanye west
  • "I'm getting lectured from Republicans in Oregon, California, upstate New York, Arizona telling me I need to back off the President, I need to back off of FEMA, I need to back off these state leaders. You and I are on the Gulf Coast- we know how these things are supposed to be run. This has nothing to do with politics..." - joe scarborough, conservative msnbc pundit

there were several more that i've heard over the past two weeks that i couldn't find word-for-word. here's the crux:

  • laura (pickles) bush - hurricane corrina. corrina?
  • rush limbaugh - build your own levees poor people!
  • geraldo rivera - the horror... the horror... (much girlier than brando though)
  • man in mississippi to veep - "go fuck yourself mr. cheaney" (that one i remember word-for-word)

the only image that most visible conservatives want to reverberate in the minds of the populous is the one of black people stealing televisions. and if, for the sake of argument, race did not play a role in the federal government's complete mishanldling of disaster relief, then why were all the hurricane relief efforts in florida executed flawlessly? was it because the victims were mostly white? was it because jeb bush is the governor? yes, and yes.

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