Friday, May 28, 2010

Obama's Katrina: What Has He Done In The 38 Days Since The BP Oil Blast Other Than Visit The Gulf

Although hardcore, Obama-luvin' Democrats like James Carville and Chris "Tingles" Mathews have taken Obama to task for his lack of action and presence during this monumental disaster in the Gulf, there are people I personally know who still praise him, in spite of everything.

Obama has visited the Gulf a mere 2 times in the past 38 days. It took him a good 11 days after the initial explosion before he decided to take a quick trip to check things out. Another 26 days or so before he made one more quickie 3 hour appearance in Louisiana before he headed out to spend Memorial Day weekend in Chicago with his wife and kids. I'm sure the only reason he bothered to honor Louisiana with his presence was the fact that so many Democrats have been skewering him for not doing a damn thing, other than stump for fellow Democrats, vacation and play golf. But it certainly took them long enough.

Carville blasts him in the video below, Matthews who once said an Obama speech sent a "thrill" up his leg is not so thrilled with him anymore, at least for now. He said on a recent Tonight Show that Obama now "scares" him, adding

"When is he actually going to do something? And I worry; I know he doesn't want to take ownership of it. I know politics. He said the minute he says, 'I'm in charge,' he takes the blame, but somebody has to. It's in our interest."

And Louisiana's Sen. Mary Landrieu, although less scathing in her criticism, said:

she's “absolutely not” satisfied with the administration’s response so far.
However, nothing really compares to the vilification Bush received during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Many are claiming this is Obama's Katrina, but there is really no comparison in how the media and others have handled this.

Evan Thomas (Newsweek) said this about Bush's response to Katrina:

How this could be—how the president of the United States could have even less "situational awareness," as they say in the military, than the average American about the worst natural disaster in a century—is one of the more perplexing and troubling chapters in a story that, despite moments of heroism and acts of great generosity, ranks as a national disgrace.

The BP Oil spill might not have started out a natural disaster per se, but it has turned into one. It took Bush 5 days to get to Louisiana after Katrina made landfall. Compare that to Obama's 11 days. One would think that Obama would have remembered the reception Bush received for not acting swiftly enough, but he has his head too far up his ass, obviously, to realize that all of these minor and major missteps reflect badly on his presidency. Unless he just doesn't give a damn, knowing full well he's a one-term president. If he was smart, he would have spent more time down in the Gulf, and if he was even smarter, as talk radio show host Todd Schnitt (The Schnitt Show) mentioned on his show today, he would have grabbed Michelle and the kids, brought them to Louisiana and had them help in the clean up efforts. Imagine those photo ops. His popularity would have skyrocketed in the polls. But nope. Our president has absolutely no clue.

So, what exactly has he done these past 36 days? The Daily Caller has a timeline of his activities.

April 22: The Deepwater Horizon drilling platform, which had been burning for two days, sinks into the gulf. President Obama, after speaking in New York about the significance of financial regulatory legislation, hosts an Earth Day celebration in the Rose Garden.

April 23: The U.S. Coastguard pronounces 11 Deepwater workers dead after traveling almost 2,000 miles throughout the gulf in search of their bodies. The president and First Lady Michelle Obama travel to North Carolina for a brief vacation, where they enjoy BBQ.

April 24: Coast Guard Rear Admiral Mary Landry announces that the Deepwater wellhead is spewing crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico. The president and first lady continue to enjoy their vacation in North Carolina.

April 26: A remote sub fails to stop the leak. Just four days after the explosion, the spill covers an area the size of Rhode Island. After hosting a ceremony for the New York Yankees, Obama travels to Andrews Air Force Base for a game of golf.

April 28: The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) pegs the leak rate at 5,000 barrels a day — up from BP’s claim of 1,000 barrels a day. Obama leaves Iowa and spends the day in Illinois, where he speaks to the owner of a family farm. He then visits a biofuel plant where he picks up mechanical parts and pretends to be interested in them.

April 29: Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal declares a state of emergency, as the spill “now covers a 600-square-mile area” and “is about 16 miles off the state’s coast.” Obama delivers remarks in Washington on the importance of cybersecurity. Later in the day, he attends a FEMA meeting about hurricane preparedness.

May 1: The U.S. military lends BP two C-130 aircraft to release potentially dangerous chemical dispersants over the oil spill. Obama tells jokes at the White House Correspondents Association Dinner, including one about killing the Jonas Brothers using CIA drones.

May 2: Obama makes a quick trip to Louisiana to ”get a firsthand view of the recovery efforts.”
For the rest of it, click here.

I can only imagine what would have happened had this occurred on Bush's watch. Can we say loud calls for impeachment? As Evan Thomas put it, this ranks as an even greater national disgrace.

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