On Thursday, April 14th a massive storm descended upon the south. By Saturday, April 16th an army of tornadoes had ripped through Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, North Carolina and Virginia. In the end, forty five people were dead and entire towns lay in ruin. On Monday, April 17th, the president finally signed the disaster declaration for North Carolina to free up federal assistance to the state.
Why did Obama wait so long to authorize assistance after this disaster? The chaos ended on Saturday. Why not send FEMA in on Sunday? Well, on Sunday the President was busy playing his 65th round of golf. His busy schedule also precluded our president from even visiting the storm ravaged area. Rather than comfort the survivors and offer words of "hope" the president believes his time would be better spent jetting off for a three-day fundraising/campaign tour out west.
Vice President Biden also had a scheduling conflict and was unable to visit the area. He was busy resting, taking a personal day at his home in Wilmington, Delaware. Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar was also too busy to stop by the tornado crippled region. On Tuesday he was in Boston to announce approval of a $1 billion dollar renewable wind energy project. The irony of that alone is epic.
This is not the first time President Obama's lethargic response to a national disaster has come across as a bit disturbing. For 57 days following the BP oil spill, Obama remained silent. When he finally did address the nation, his inexcusably late attempt to prove his concern came across as contrived and disturbingly cold. Interestingly, then Senator Obama was highly critical of the Bush administration's lethargic response in the wake of Katrina. However, even the people who suffered most said Obama's response to the BP oil spill was worse.
Following the BP oil disaster, not only did Obama downplay the seriousness of the event, his administration actively slowed response efforts. The president also tied offers of foreign assistance in restrictive red-tape to thwart any attempts to clean it up. When the truth came out and the Obama could no longer downplay the seriousness of the event, the president changed tack. In full spirit of Rahm Emanuel's lesson to "never let a good crisis go to waste", Obama's entire administration was unified in their effort to use the disaster as a catalyst to push its failed energy policies and their costly cap-and-trade/global warming legislation.
In the aftermath of the Fort Hood shooting Americans expected their president to say something. However, while speaking at the Tribal Nations Conference hosted by the Department of Interior's Bureau of Indian affairs President Obama's remarks about the shooting seemed ancillary as if more of a distraction than a matter of concern. The president spent his first three minutes thanking cabinet members and staffers. He even offered a shout-out to Dr. Joe Medicine Crow, the man he called, "that Congressional Medal of Honor winner." It was the Medal of Freedom that Dr. Crow had won, not the Congressional Medal of Honor. One would think that the president would remember that, considering that he was the one who gave it to him.
"I planned to make some broader remarks," he told the crowd. "But as some of you might have heard there has been a tragic shooting at the Fort Hood Army base in Texas."
Instead of coming across as a somber Commander-in-Chief, offering words of reassurance and compassion, Americans saw an awkwardly disconnected and inappropriately jovial president. Even the left-leaning mainstream media and many of his fellow democrats seemed disturbed by his frightening level of insensitivity.
December 25, 2009 - Just he did with the BP oil spill, Obama initially denied of the importance of the Christmas Day terrorist attack on Northwest Flight 253. In his disinterest, it took the president until the following Monday morning to say something. "The American people should be assured that we are doing everything in our power to keep you and your family safe and secure during this busy holiday season," Obama told reporters. Of course, "we" were "doing everything in our power" to keep Americans safe and secure that busy holiday season except for abandoning his own holiday vacation in Hawaii.
In the practice of not letting yet another "good crisis go to waste", Barack Obama shamelessly used the fear and horror of the shootings in Tucson to score political points for a 15 point bounce.
After floods wreaked havoc in Rhode Island, the only reason why Obama flew over the state was because he was on his way to make a speech in Maine to again push the healthcare bill that American's still refused to love.
North Dakota - It was a full six weeks after Fargo Governor Jack Dalrymple asked for help before President Obama finally signed the declaration of disaster. Without that, FEMA and other sources of federal emergency assistance would not be dispatched.
As Japan's nuclear crisis entered a catastrophic phase Obama was busy videotaping his NCAA tournament picks and we are told we'll be able to tune into ESPN to find out who he likes. Obama also managed to squeeze in his 61st round of golf and returned to the White House with just enough time to grab a quick shower before heading out for a few laughs and to party with Washington's social elite at the annual Gridiron Dinner.
With Libya and Bahrain in turmoil and with financial markets crashing, President Barack Obama went on a five-day trip to Latin America to again "talk" about rather than solve our own economy crisis in Washington. As exhausted and terrified American's were being caught up in a dizzying onslaught of mounting catastrophes, Obama's focus on "Women's History Month" in his videotaped presidential address seemed bizarre and inexplicably out of touch.
With two years left in his presidency, just as Obama all but abandoned his responsibilities as an Illinois senator to run for president, now President Obama has left his responsibilities in Washington behind to launch his re-election campaign. As Americans in the south struggled to piece together their lives in the wake of the storms, another 5 Americans were killed in a suicide bombing at a military base in eastern Afghanistan . In the meantime, Obama chose to honor the 2009-10 Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks and play another quick 18 holes of golf.
On Wednesday, April 20th, as Americans in the south burried their dead, mended their wounded and tried to reassemble what the storms had scattered to the wind, Obama was busy having a quaint little town hall chit-chat with his Facebook pal and co-host Mark Zuckerberg. Addressing his predominantly young crowd Barack Obama talked debt and budget. "Nothing is easier than solving a problem on the backs of people who are poor or people who are powerless or don't have lobbyists or don't have clout," Mr. Obama said.
Of course he failed to mention that, as his policies have effectively tripled the national deficit, they were now part of the "poor people" he spoke of. Yes, of the $14,327,905,784,397.38 in credit necessary to fund Obama's gluttonous spending policies, every one of those bright yet oblivious youngsters sat with their $46,148.47 portion of the debt strapped to their backs. Of course, that load is growing by an average of $4.9 billion per day so their youthful vigor will come in handy over the next two years of his presidency.
"Obama is the golden child," says author, speaker and networking guru, Peter Shankman. "It's the rock star thing." Maybe so, Mr. Shankman, maybe so. But for a Comander-in-Chief who told Americans on his inaugural day that "What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility," considering the present state of disarray in the country - of which he is supposed to be in charge - perhaps he should start spending less time on the "rock star thing" and a bit more on that "being the president thing".
Cross Posted, Associated Content