Friday, September 02, 2005

Bush and other natural disasters

I read The Globe and Mail, the local paper, and half the papers published on the internet. I don't watch television, but I can't stop reading. The images coming out of Lousiana and Mississippi hit me on such a visceral level that I can barely believe it when I look up from the page and find myself in the middle of city going about its normal daily life.

I keep picturing a news clip I caught by accident once. "I'm a war president," George W. smirks. He has the look of a madman whose ego has ballooned to filled up the space where a brain and heart might have once been.

A "war president." Well, it's a damn good thing he let everyone know, because now we aren't furious to see him lollygagging around making speeches about controlling oil prices while half the population of New Orleans dies in front of media hundred degree attics...stranded in hospitals that no longer have food, let alone medicine, stranded in the thousands inside the superdome, while the bodies stack up outside - and young men already so disentitled and alienated give final vent to the brutality of need and anger.

I'm glad he's big on law and order too. We wouldn't want to see what little police power is left wasted on saving anyone when they could be enforcing the law and protecting property. And after all, I have to think, how can you expect this "war president" to relate? Do you figure he's ever been hungry? Or even stood next to someone who was? Do you figure he can imagine, in his wildest dreams, being someone without the means to evacuate? Without gas money or a car? Without anywhere to go? Could he imagine being sick or old or pregnant when the hurricane hit? Could he imagine how it must feel to realize that you are abandoned in a huge sewer and every face in that crowd of thousands is black, like yours, and that no one - no one - may be coming? At least not in time to get you out alive.

I see those horrifying pictures and I want to send George W. on a little vacation - two weeks paid holiday in The Big Easy. And he can take his advisors with him. If he doesn't like it, maybe a school bus will come along to take him back to Texas. And maybe he'll be one of the lucky few who get on it.