Friday, May 7, 2010

Dance for your relief money! DANCE!!!!

If there's one thing I love about this country, it's how our political betters can take any tragedy, whether near or averted, and rise to the occasion... of using it in a completely petty way to make cheap political attacks and possibly hinder relief efforts.

Take for instance, the averted Times Square bombing. Instead of praising law enforcement for catching the man, civilian vigilance for pointing out the bomb, or noting how we're seeming to gets tons of information out of the guy, the GOP seems content to whine about stripping said terrorist of every right he has (except the right to bear arms) and informing would be terrorists of the world that all we are is lucky and that better planned attacks could easily get through because Democrats are weak. Classy.

But Republicans aren't the only ones to engage in this type of behavior. Take the recent decision by BP to replace water in the Gulf of Mexico with oil. As the oil slick menaces the shores of Louisiana, it would be prudent to extend to them certain federal protections, declarations of emergency, and relief, right? Even if the state is run by a Republican hypocrite who rages against federal money usage and government spending right up until the point where he needs a couple bucks? What? No? Fuck him? Well played.
In Louisiana, Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) has been a vocal critic of federal spending under President Obama, but as the state closest to the undersea leak, he already has requested various forms of federal disaster assistance. He's also anticipating the possibility that British Petroleum either won't, or won't have to under the law, foot the the full cost of all the damages associated with the spill.

Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) took a swipe at Jindal when I asked during a brief interview this week if Congress was considering any funding to add to what BP will do. "Well you know, here we go. You know, the governor of Louisiana says the federal government should stay out of the state's business," Menendez told me Tuesday night.
"There is not the appetite for [and aid supplemental] right now," a House Democratic leadership aide told me bluntly in an interview. What's more, lawmakers don't view this as anything like the Katrina fallout since so much of the region's infrastructure had been wiped out and so many people were displaced.
Oooh, bet Jindal wishes he hadn't bashed the stimulus now.

It's just nice to know that in times of crisis this country's elected leaders can come together to put the screws to someone in an attempt to look good politically in an election year because that someone tried to put the screws to them in an attempt to look good politically in an election year. Except the part where this is an massive environmental disaster and not some simpleton yelling bullshit about The Socialism. Ah well, I'm sure Louisiana can take one for the team. They probably won't notice what with the Super Bowl celebrations still going on. They're good like that. Maybe David Simon will do an episode of Treme about it.

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