That George W. Bush has been a staggeringly awful president — 1962 Mets/2003 Tigers awful – hasn’t been in doubt for a long, long time. What has remained open to some debate, however, has been the genesis of this awfulness. Is he really as dumb as he sounds? Or is he smart, but incurious? Or finally, is he really an evil genius, who is wrecking the US government as part of a devious plan to undermine support for liberal government?
Well, if there was any room for doubt left, for me, at least, this one settles it.
Associated Press: Tape: Bush, Chertoff Warned Before Katrina
In dramatic and sometimes agonizing terms, federal disaster officials warned President Bush and his homeland security chief before Hurricane Katrina struck that the storm could breach levees, put lives at risk in New Orleans’ Superdome and overwhelm rescuers, according to confidential video footage.
Bush didn’t ask a single question during the final briefing before Katrina struck on Aug. 29, but he assured soon-to-be-battered state officials: “We are fully prepared.”
Bush didn’t ask a single question? An Apocalypse was bearing down on a major US city, and he just sat there nonplused by it all? (And then later, of course, he headed out of town for some West Coast guitar picking and cake cutting). Can you imagine Bill Clinton doing that? Hell, can you even imagine Bush’s dad doing that?
Case closed: George W. Bush is a tool. He’s an empty suit, an empty head and all too often an empty chest where the heart is supposed to go. He’s a frontman — the smiling face (well, smirking face, anyway) providing the cover for the crimes of Cheney & Co. And even now, as the whole corrupt edifice is starting to fall down around him, he doesn’t have a clue.
And he’s still the only president we’ve got.