A pretty odd report by CBS News tries to show Obama in a bad light, but since there’s no legitimate criticism to report, the article ends up grudgingly praising the President’s stewardship of the nation in the wake of Hurricane Sandy’s destruction. CBS points out that President Obama will shine if he simply takes good care of the nation in these difficult days – which Obama will of course do consummately well, because he’s an excellent manager and he cares – and laments that Romney as the non-encumbent can’t do much to counterbalance that.
Meanwhile, MSNBC reports that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has the good grace to publicly express gratitute for Pres. Obama’s help with Sandy’s “devastation” and quotes Christie saying:
“… working with President Obama on securing resources for the state has been great… The president has been all over this, and he deserves great credit,” Christie said. “He gave me his number at the White House and told me to call him if I needed anything, and he absolutely means it. It’s been very good working with the president and his administration. It’s been wonderful.”
President Obama and the governor spoke three times on Monday, Christie stated. “He asked me what I needed. I said if he could expedite the Major Disaster Declaration without all the normal FEMA mumbo-jumbo. He got right on it,” added Christie. “I got a call from FEMA at 2am… and then this morning I understand he signed the Major Disaster Declaration for New Jersey.”
Obama is able to extend help to New Jersey because he has been rebuilding FEMA since Dubya Bush almost gutted the program during his presidency. In 2005, Eric Holdeman defended FEMA in a Washington Post opinion piece:
…the disastrous aftermath of Hurricane Katrina … makes it all the more difficult to understand why, at this moment, the country’s premier agency for dealing with such events – FEMA – is being, in effect, systematically downgraded and all but dismantled by the Department of Homeland Security.
Yet, despite the distress felt by so many today in the wake of Sandy’s impact and the overwhelming public gratitude of high-profile GOP darling Chris Christie, Romney refuses to back off the position that FEMA should be dismantled once and for all. Forbes is one of the growing number of organizations that has become displeased with Romney’s policies and is making no bones about saying so. Romney says that funding FEMA is irresponsible because the expense will leave future generations saddled with government debt. Forbes responds:
While it’s swell that Governor Romney is concerned about the future of our kids, at this very moment —as the densely populated Northeastern section of the USA is experiencing a catastrophic disaster at a result of Hurricane Sandy—I can tell you that millions of people in the line of this extraordinary and unprecedented storm are also very much concerned for their children. However, these folks do not have the luxury today of worrying about the future of their kids. The concern these people are experiencing is today..right now…immediate…and very, very real.
For these people, the need for FEMA is neither political nor abstract.
It’s become obvious that when Romney promotes the idea of small government, he’s talking about a federal government that’s too small to stop bad-ass rich guys like him from robbing the middle and working classes and destroying the land, and is also too small to help average Americans out when disaster strikes. Equally obvious: conservatives who did not sign up to support the social extremism that Romney and Ryan represent are increasingly distancing themselves from that message. In a telling recent vote of no-confidence, the Mormon-owned Salt Lake Tribune endorsed Obama, offering scathing criticism to Romney, who is a brother Mormon:
In considering which candidate to endorse, The Salt Lake Tribune editorial board had hoped that Romney would exhibit the same talents for organization, pragmatic problem solving and inspired leadership that he displayed here more than a decade ago. Instead, we have watched him morph into a friend of the far right, then tack toward the center with breathtaking aplomb. Through a pair of presidential debates, Romney’s domestic agenda remains bereft of detail and worthy of mistrust.
Therefore, our endorsement must go to the incumbent, a competent leader who, against tough odds, has guided the country through catastrophe and set a course that, while rocky, is pointing toward a brighter day. The president has earned a second term. Romney, in whatever guise, does not deserve a first.
On the other side of the political spectrum, Donald Trump’s Tower windows are apparently too high for him to see that millions of people reeling from Sandy’s punishment have no time or patience for his silly pre-election attack on Obama. Trump sent out a Tweet today extending the deadline on his offer to donate $5 million to charity if Obama “shows” Trump his school transcripts and passport. Trump missed the memo that the FBI, CIA and Secret Service already checked all of that out for America. Sagely, our President hasn’t honored this selfish inanity with a response.
So, you might ask, what about Kimi – what’s her position in all of this? Well, I’m pretty happy today: my family was blessed with the good fortune of having lights and heat right through the storm. We weren’t directly affected by flooding and the prediction I made came true. I told a friend just before Sandy hit, “Wouldn’t it be excellent if the Obama signs remained standing during the storm while all of the Romney signs got swept away?” and this is exactly what happened – look!