Newsweek: 'How Bush Blew It'

Writing in the latest issue of Newsweek, Evan Thomas paints an absolutely horrifying and infuriating portrait of George W. Bush and his administration as completely inept, out of touch, and irresponsible to the point of complete and total negligence.

The reality, say several aides who did not wish to be quoted because it might displease the president, did not really sink in until Thursday night. Some White House staffers were watching the evening news and thought the president needed to see the horrific reports coming out of New Orleans. Counselor Bartlett made up a DVD of the newscasts so Bush could see them in their entirety as he flew down to the Gulf Coast the next morning on Air Force One.

How this could be--how the president of the United States could have even less "situational awareness," as they say in the military, than the average American about the worst natural disaster in a century--is one of the more perplexing and troubling chapters in a story that, despite moments of heroism and acts of great generosity, ranks as a national disgrace.

President George W. Bush has always trusted his gut. He prides himself in ignoring the distracting chatter, the caterwauling of the media elites, the Washington political buzz machine. He has boasted that he doesn't read the papers. His doggedness is often admirable. It is easy for presidents to overreact to the noise around them.

But it is not clear what President Bush does read or watch, aside from the occasional biography and an hour or two of ESPN here and there. Bush can be petulant about dissent; he equates disagreement with disloyalty. After five years in office, he is surrounded largely by people who agree with him. ... When Hurricane Katrina struck, it appears there was no one to tell President Bush the plain truth: that the state and local governments had been overwhelmed, that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) was not up to the job and that the military, the only institution with the resources to cope, couldn't act without a declaration from the president overriding all other authority.

While New Orleans drowned, the President was clueless. It's clear there were any number of things Bush could have done to get a better handle on the disaster. He was briefed on the dire situation the city was facing, but continued on with his plans, as if he just didn't get it. In all likelihood, he didn't. Few other explanations can account for his total lack of action.

At the Katrina relief telethon, Kanye West infamously ad-libbed that "George Bush doesn't care about black people." This article would indicate that West was wrong. The facts leave you with the impression that George Bush doesn't care about any people.

Tags: Republicans (all tags)

Comments

27 Comments

The bubble exists.
I'm pretty sure Gee-Dub only sees what D*ck Ch*n*y wants him to see -- he's effective at selling his side of the story because he's not even aware there's another side of the story.
by catastrophile 2005-09-11 05:55PM | 0 recs
Do you know what this article means?!
Absolutely nothing. Nobody who reads Newsweek or Time has anything other than a negative opinion of Bush already. Same goes with 60 Minutes, The New York Times, and a million other media outlets. And this is exactly the type of America the GOP envisions.
by zt155 2005-09-11 05:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Do you know what this article means?!
I'll be sure to let my conservative, Bush-voting, Newsweek-reading history professor know that.
by craverguy 2005-09-11 05:59PM | 0 recs
Re: Do you know what this article means?!
But the point is, will your professor actually admit to making a mistake by supporting Dubya?

That's what makes this all so alarming. The Republicans effectively get people to vote based on their base instincts...greed...fear...and then when they are politically compromised shame those who voted for them by threatening to out them.

Sure, your professor will read this...but will he be able to accept it and displace his beliefs about his own actions, let alone Bush?

by risenmessiah 2005-09-11 06:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Do you know what this article means?!
"But the point is, will your professor actually admit to making a mistake by supporting Dubya?"

Probably. He supported John McCain in the 2000 caucuses.

by craverguy 2005-09-11 06:17PM | 0 recs
What a prick!
The people that perplex me most are the McCain supporters who turned their votes to Bush after the hatchet job done to McCain.  Not the least of whom is McCain his damned self!
by jcjcjc 2005-09-12 04:54AM | 0 recs
Contract Law and Implicit Assumptions in Jobs/Purc
I think that Dems are making a big mistake not to be throwing a spotlight on the REAL agenda of the GOP in trying to roll back the 20th century. They are fighting the implicit assumptions in purchase and emplyment contracts that Americans have grown to count on but which are missing in some foreign countries, like China. For example, here, when we accept a job, we assume that that job does not include what we call 'sexual harassment' (having to have sex with the boss to keep your job). But that is a promise that is not explicit in the job contract, it is given to us by a tradition that could easily be overthrown just as the tradition of paying overtime to salaried workers seems to be dissapearing. So workers need to negotiate a prohibition against, and a price for violation (literally) a prearranged, high - price for sexual harassment INTO THEIR CONTRACT - BEFORE ACCEPTING THE JOB..

Get me? Sort of like the GPL, a EULA of sorts, kind of a standard employment contract add-on, that an employer must accept before hiring YOU. (if they don't want it, they have to hire somebody else)

What do people think of this idea?

by ultraworld 2005-09-12 06:33AM | 0 recs
Re: Do you know what this article means?!
So don't even try?  It may be that you can never turn some of these Bushites around again.  But maybe you can catch the fence sitters before its too late.  People are entering the world every day.  People are maturing into becoming voters every day, becoming more aware of the world around them.  These people need to know what the truth is before they get tainted.  I have a brother that is clearly on the fence.  He's in with the wrong crowd of rednecks and he is prone to peer pressure.  Even I'm a peer and I can tell he is telling me what I want to hear.  I'm not sure I am truly getting through.  I catch him watching Fox News and when I call it the propaganda channel he laughs and doesn't seem to know what I mean.  He changes it but he doesn't know how they work and who they work for.  I'm having a hard time staying ahead of this situation.  I can talk to him about the issues but he is someone that is too busy to educate himself on current events. He is more willing to go along with the crowd.  He isn't going to read Newsweek either, but maybe someone else thats like him will read it.  These people are important because they help create new followers once they get hooked.  My father believed Bush was just a good old guy until my mom and I got through to him.  I want the news, the truth, about Bush to be everywhere my brother turns so that he cannot ignore it.  I want him to hear it from a source other than me.  Because lets face it, I'm just his older brother and I can't be trusted.  He may still shake his head yes when in a crowd of his buddies but as long as when he hops in that voting booth he  has an inkling of a conscience and votes to go with it I'm fine.  I want Newsweek reporting on this failure.  I want it in the history books.  Fox News is one of the biggest enemies we have right now.  The only way to take it down is to boycott any business that advertises on it.  No public business can take a lengthy boycott against it even if that boycott doesn't make it unprofitable.  Kill growth.  At least Newsweek is on the right side for the time being.  We need to support themn and anyone else willing to speak out.

Siphoning off resources is critical and in this case resources are human minds.  They aren't hearing the truth because no one has been speaking it.  I don't want anyone to say that someone telling the truth about this administration is wasting their time.  Fahrenheit 9/11 and Outfoxed may preach to the choir but without the truth I would be more prone to go over to the wrong side.

by jrflorida 2005-09-11 06:43PM | 0 recs
Did I say don't try?
My whole point was that our problem isn't getting Bush to admit he was wrong about (fill in the blank). It's to make the people who enabled him realize it to.

Bush is Reagan Lite. He's just acting, playing us for fools. The real danger is that when Bush is gone the same people will get manipulated again and again simply because they can't change. The President is always limited to two terms, but there's no guarantee an individual voter will come around.

Newsweek and Time are now paying the price for flag-waving, I feel. They can't have it both ways. Either they are pro-American in times of crisis or they want to be hard-hitting and aggressive and take no prisoners with the administration...if they try to do both...no one will believe them.

by risenmessiah 2005-09-11 06:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Do you know what this article means?!
They aren't hearing the truth because no one has been speaking it.  I don't want anyone to say that someone telling the truth about this administration is wasting their time.  Fahrenheit 9/11 and Outfoxed may preach to the choir but without the truth I would be more prone to go over to the wrong side.

Was Farenheit 9/11 and Outfoxed preaching to the choir or was it establishing the anti-thesis to the conservative thesis that is now reaching into the M$M and filtering through to middle America?

That is exactly why it is vital for centrist Democrats to stop bashing Howard Dean, Michael Moore, progressive Democrats, Move On and those who are aggressively opposing Bush, conservatism and the Republican Party.

by Gary Boatwright 2005-09-11 08:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Do you know what this article means?!
Agreed, these are the people and groups that are in a position to attack without concern for the reprecussions.  It would be nice if the media and politicians had the balls to do it.  They need to figure out what side they are on.  It takes a village to run Bush (and that means all his little minions in the ranks) out of town on a rail.
by jrflorida 2005-09-12 03:33AM | 0 recs
Bush is (IMO) not the real President..
He is just a figurehead.. Do you think they would let the real leader be placed into a job with an eight year time limitation. A job where he/she would be exposed to possible attack? Where they would be in the public eye? No way.

Bush, with his former alcoholics 'detachment' - like Reagan with his alzheimers maintains just the perfect amount of 'plausible denial' -

He is just a diversionary tactic.. He is expendable to them, and if they want him to, he will fall on his sword like any other 'good german' would..

And the ever-so-profitable killing machine will go on killing, undisturbed..

Ever wonder why China considers internal personell changes and debates to be state secrets?

Whether we do too?

Why so many government agencies seem like powerless shells.. why the Dems and the GOP seem almost the same?

well, now you (might) know..

by ultraworld 2005-09-12 07:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Bush is (IMO) not the real President..
I think the Dems right now are very centrist.  I think thats a good thing.  I don't want anyone too far left in office to begin with.  I do think Bush is a puppet of his administration.  But I think this administration is night and day different from the one that came before.  I think that overwhelmingly obvious.  With that, I don't believe they are all the same animal or even the same species.  I understand the whole theory that there is really one governing group of people, the rich, but I don't believe its true.  At least not the same group of people...and thats if it were even true.  It would be nice for someone that isn't part of the system, a Hacket, to make it to the top.  Of course that assumes that they don't get corrupted on the way up.  
by jrflorida 2005-09-12 04:30PM | 0 recs
by blues 2005-09-12 12:05AM | 0 recs
"but continued on with his plans.."
sorry but the real tale of the tape was that these were all Karl Roves plans.

- The plan to halt any funding or assistance for democrat voting counties, or the "assistance for a
woman from the other party"

- The plan to keep going as if nothing happened, vis
a vis, the 911 tragedy immediate aftergame - textbook Karl Rove, "don't let them ruffle your feathers"

- Brokering the position of the head of FEMA for big  campaign kickbacks, to a guy who never had anything other than a paper pushing job at FEMA in
1970 and of course,  arabian horses ..
"lets get a new oil map drawn up of the persian
 gulf, boys."

- Sending Bush in Three Times to pretend as if
he knows what he's doing.

Ever noticed, in all these "Bush" plans, the media
is there coordinated with made-for-fox news
pictures of Bush "Looking Heroic".

No, this was all Karl Rove's plan. Rove has
the mendacity to believe he can keep pushing
his version of the Kevin Phillips 20 yr. plan.

I totally disagree with fear-mongering guys
like Mike Moore that want to play this into
Bush's hand. Its not about Bush anymore. When
CIA operatives are sent into Al Qaeda
and then exposed.. Its about Justice.
Let mike moore complain all he wants, he's
an ENTERTAINER.

At the end of the day, lets focus this attack
where you were actually working... on
the TRAITOR.  What was it, Democrats. --
Three weeks ago now, and you can't remember what
you need to do? Where is that Pink Slip,
Ms. Pelosi?

by turnerbroadcasting 2005-09-11 07:36PM | 0 recs
Re: "but continued on with his plans.."
I totally disagree with fear-mongering guys
like Mike Moore that want to play this into
Bush's hand.

That's exactly what I'm talking about. What in the hell does "fear mongering guys like Mike Moore" mean? That is an asinine label that has no basis in reality.

Michael Moore was telling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

by Gary Boatwright 2005-09-11 08:49PM | 0 recs
Re: "but continued on with his plans.."
This argument is just another manifestation of The Cosmic Twist. The Cosmic Twist is ever-harrowing, but must be played out all the way to the utter end.
by blues 2005-09-12 12:21AM | 0 recs
In most Americans opinion, we need more Michael Mo
Moore's.

Why? Watch Fahrenheit 9/11 which seems to me to be pointing out a lot of important issues with our so-called leadership and how their main concern seems to be appearances, NOT the security of Americans. For example, why did BushCorp give all those Saudis a special air flight home, two days after 9/11, instead of interrogating them? Why do the BushCorp always try to atteck people who bring up areas where they need to improve, instead of ADDRESSING THE PROBLEMS..

For example: Why do they keep encouraging EXPORTING OUR JOBS?

That's important.. What planet are they on where they don't need or care about jobs? Except as some kind of PR thing. A 'public relations problem'

Those are REAL PEOPLES LIVES THEY ARE DESTROYING..

Its like the BushCorp is trying to destroy people's lives.. That is not American.

Thank you, Michael Moores of this country. We need more like you. HONESTY IS AMERICAN

DENIAL AND THE GOP BLAME GAME IS NOT

by ultraworld 2005-09-12 07:31AM | 0 recs
Re: In most Americans opinion, we need more Michae
Well, yeah -- I guess I would have to defer to Michael Moore.
by blues 2005-09-12 01:46PM | 0 recs
Re: In most Americans opinion, we need more Michae
Why export jobs?  Because its cheaper for them to go over seas and if enough are lost here we will get desperate enough to take what they give us and thank them for it.  They are all about driving down wages.  They want the good old days back.  Their good old days.

My brother objected to Michael Moore and this Kenyay West (or however its spelled) speaking out.  Using forums that were not specifically designed for their speach.  I say take whatever forum is available.  If you don't one certainly isn't going to be created for you that will reach the masses.  My brother is very much a fence sitter.  I'm worried he may go over to the other side.  For now I'm holding my ground as best I can.

by jrflorida 2005-09-12 04:36PM | 0 recs
Re: "but continued on with his plans.."
He's an entertainer that got it right.  Everyone has a voice and everyone has the ability to be right.  Just because someone is a politician or someone in the media doesn't make them more capable.  The whole idea that entertainers should keep their mouth shut and be good little citizens is disgusting.  They are people like us except they actaully have a voice, a convenient soap box from which to call it like it is (or not).  Many of them, not all, worked their way up and got lucky in their profession.  They sit in a comfortable seat but with the memory of their struggle.  Many still struggle even though they have fame to go along with it.  I'm glad when entertainers speak up and I am thankful we have freedom of speach in this country to protect them.  They take the chance everytime they speak of losing the next job, of ruining their career with a black list.  Never forget the chances they take with their career.  I know several peole that boycott starts for the words they speak.  I hate that but its none the less true.  Moore rocks.  He gets it wrong sometimes but thats my opinion.  But let him speak.  And Bush may not be running again but that doesn't mean he doesn't have power.  He is the figurehead of the right and lopping that off serves a purpose.
by jrflorida 2005-09-12 03:39AM | 0 recs
It will make a difference
Stories like this will make a difference in the long run.
There will likely not be a single act or event which will bring down Bush and the neocons, but an accumulated weight of incompetence and poor judgement.
Sounds like when Bush asked Pelosi "What didn't go right?" it wasn't a sarcastic question as I had thought -- it sounds like he actually did not know anything that had gone wrong.  She was right when she called this "dangerous" -- I wonder what else is no one telling Bush.
by CathiefromCanada 2005-09-11 09:30PM | 0 recs
Bush will be like Nixon
No one admits the voted for Nixon, but the guy won two terms in office.

If Dems do their job right, Bush will be Nixon all over again -- a two termer that no one voted for.

by jcjcjc 2005-09-12 04:56AM | 0 recs
If we are still alive..
Don't count on them to go away quietly after losing an election..

If it looks like they will lose, they won't let it get that far.. They will do something to create a national emergency..

A war? Or who knows what else.. This - permanent 'national emergency' state is clearly their wet dream.. the moment they have wanted so much for so long.. the time to play out their militaristic fantasies..of world domination.. Seriously..

Hitler's symbol was the swastika.. Its meaning.. fascism - or totalitarianism - in its truest form - is a machine that CAN'T slow down or EVER stop the madness because the minute it does, it collapses under its own weight.. It must keep up the fear, keep up the terror.. KEEP KILLING..

Imagine a MLM that feeds on blood.. then you will get the idea.. Do some reading about Stalin's terror or Hitler's plans for the ethnic (and political/spiritual) 'cleansing' of Eurasia or Mao's 'Cultural Revolution' and its persecution of EVERYONE.. Even the 'true believers' in the outer circles (those who must be lied to) who often are the first to go.

You people are so naiive.. We are not dealing with amateurs here... They do not play by the rules..

by ultraworld 2005-09-12 07:41AM | 0 recs
Read Hannah Arendt's "The Origins of T..
 Hannah Arendt's "The Origins of Totalitarianism" - written in the 50s, it still carries a whallop like nothing else I've ever read..

And you will see the signs of impending fascism all around us..

I am not kidding, I am DEAD serious..

If you only read one book this year, let that be it..

You will see.. we haven't come very far in 50 years... We certainly have not learned the lessons that we should have from the last WORLD war...

As they intended.. Those who started it..

And who remain.. And wait..

A word to the wise.. Those who do not remember the mistakes of the past are often condemmed to repeat them..

...NEVER AGAIN... for all of us..

by ultraworld 2005-09-12 07:48AM | 0 recs
Re: If we are still alive..
And now they have troops getting aquainted with operating in the U.S.  While I believe they are needed I wonder if it doesn't fit into their plans.  Its going to be hard to turn the military, the basic fighting man, against the people.  But maybe they don't have to do it for very long.  Just long enough to change things.  

The one thing that keeps fascism from raising its head too much right now is the power of our Democracy.  We are facing fascism.  But with each Republican administration that power slips away.  At some point it will be just one more tool, if it isn't already.

by jrflorida 2005-09-12 04:41PM | 0 recs
So aides are finally leaking damaging stuff
This could lead to all sorts of interesting things for the remainder of Bush's term.
by Cyt 2005-09-12 09:02AM | 0 recs

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