Wednesday, March 1, 2006
Well we now have the tape and it's there in full living color, as they used to say, Bush had a conference call with the FEMA boys on the Sunday before the Katrina hit and was warned that it was going to be a bad one. Well duh, we all knew that, and in fact there was talk about what would happen if the levee's failed prior to the storm's land fall both in this meeting and on the news casts that the public was viewing in the days leading up to the storm. Somehow this news, which is not new, is being treated as........well as news. It's kind of like the media is saying, "same old news - now with pictures!" These folks must think we're really dumb.
Either that or it is a whole new opportunity to bash a Republican President, which gives us the opportunity to talk a little about media bias. My buddy over at the Functional Ambivalent (scroll down, I can't perma link for some reason) is admirably, if not wisely, trying to make the case that there is no liberal bias to media reporting. In a way, you've got to admire the guy. Just in the last week we have had unending reports (including on FOX) of a near civil war in Iraq that not only didn't materialize, but reinforced the view that we're failing in Iraq. We also had the publishing of the CBS "approval" rating poll that was weighted 27% Republicans and 38% Democrats. Today the Zogby "troops" poll that seems to have some problems. The one consistent thread in these stories was their one sided slant against the Bush administration. Further, two of the three were manufactured news where the outcome seemed a bit pre-ordained.
And now we have this article. I am not about to rehash my thoughts on the Katrina response, my original post is here and I think, somewhat surprisingly, that it not only stands the test of time, but is somewhat confirmed by a listening of this tape. The bottom line is that no matter who failed the most, it is quite clear that there was failure across the board including, if one is to be completely candid on behalf of the storm's victims. Yet is there any balanced mention of this in the reporting of this story? Any mention that Bush had to beg Blanco to order a mandatory evac? Any mention that the police force evaporated or that Nagin went a bit nutty? Not a whit.
Unfortunately for me, I happened upon CNN this evening while I was working out. I haven't watched CNN since Lou Dobbs was sane, and I must say the level of anti Bush bias was stunning. This AP story, which contains no new news, only new pictures, took up at least the first 10 minutes of CNN's "Situation Room" (ooh it's soo exciting!) broadcast. There was no discernible difference from the AP print story. All this confirms is that Bush held several meetings and ignored all the warnings. No mention of any actions that he took, no mention of any problems with the local governments and no mention of the complications of dealing with the worst natural disaster in the history of the U.S. Oh, and the whole thing finished with some old geezer guy named Cafferty who played the role of the wise old scold and said that not one person should have died. Not a single person sir? What an ass.
This is particularly stunning when you think back to the media's reporting directly after the storm. At that time they said he wasn't engaged, didn't care and was on vacation. At the very least I wish they'd keep their slander consistent.