Snake Oil Stories

Have you heard about the oil spill in the Gulf?  I was speaking with someone at work about it.  This person was under the impression that this oil spill is Obama’s Katrina.  He probably got this impression by watching Fox.  People, if you hear something on Fox, don’t believe it.  Notice that I haven’t used the words Fox and news together.  That is because Fox doesn’t just slant the news, it makes it up, it flat-out lies!

Katrina was a Category 5 hurricane.  The Federal Government, in the form of FEMA is supposed to provide an emergency response to hurricanes.  It has had lots of experience doing it too.  Under the Clinton administration FEMA successfully responded to several hurricanes.  Under the Bush administration, FEMA was turned over to political hacks.  Remember Bush’s post Katrina endorsement?  “Brownie, you’re doing a heck of a job!”  This someone had forgotten and then tried to distance himself from the Bush administration.  I’m sorry, it doesn’t work like that.  If you voted for Bush you still own him, even if you now have buyer’s remorse.  Some mistakes you keep having to pay for.

People who call this oil spill, Obama’s Katrina should beware of unintended consequences.  In order for the Federal Government to even be able to respond to this oil spill, in a way that would respond to the  Obama’s Katrina accusation, it would have to federalize BP’s oil well, have a government agency that can compete in the oil drilling business and be able to do something that no one knows how to do, that is plug the leak.  Obama critics wouldn’t want the first two actions and no one knows how to do the last.  Bush’s mistakes were that he neglected to do his job and didn’t act as though he cared anyway.

In yesterday’s post, Dave was sitting in an airplane that was sitting on the tarmac at New York’s JFK airport, in a thunderstorm.  Later he called from the JFK terminal.  His flight had been canceled.  He happened to meet a friend from school who was also stranded in NYC.  His friend had a hotel room, so he planned to crash on the floor with her.  To make matter’s worse; his iPhone was almost out of charge.  He hung up and I went online to see what his new flight reservation looked like.  I got confused, because it showed his original flight scheduled to depart momentarily.  He called back and I relayed this information.  He said he would check into it and hung up again.  He called one more time and thanked me for alerting him about his flight.  Dave made it to Rochester around midnight, on Thursday night.

2 thoughts on “Snake Oil Stories

  1. Wow…such vitriol! Now that I found that nerve it’s going to be fun hitting it now and then. Just to set the record straight, the role of FEMA is not to clean up after hurricanes. You must have gotten this impression from various NPR stories. From the FEMA web site: “FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards. DISASTER. It strikes anytime, anywhere. It takes many forms — a hurricane, an earthquake, a tornado, a flood, a fire or a hazardous spill, an act of nature or an act of terrorism. It builds over days or weeks, or hits suddenly, without warning. Every year, millions of Americans face disaster, and its terrifying consequences.” So, whether the oil spill was caused by God or BP, FEMA and, by extension, Obama have the responsibility to respond. Sorry, Mark, you own this one.
    P.S. Your homework assignment is to write down 3 items from Fox News today that are “flat-out lies.” (Since it’s all lies, all the time, this should be easy.) Since you don’t have cable TV, this will be understandably challenging. But, I’m sure HuffPo can provide another story for you to reference.

  2. I probably should just spam this comment. It would be the smart thing to do from a career point of view. Although it would hurt my friend’s feelings in the short term, spamming Don’s comment would probably save an otherwise doomed friendship. But, I just can’t afford to alienate such a sizeable percentage of my readership. In the end it is all about the eyeballs. I feel so dirty now.

Leave a Reply