I just read a newspaper article titled “Blistering GOP Katrina report outlines federal failings.” It describes a report issued by a Republican House committee, detailing the ways in which the head of FEMA, the head of Homeland Security, and the White House fell down on the job and turned Hurricane Katrina into a much bigger disaster than it should’ve been. (Of course, this was buried on page 8 instead of plastered across the front page. The front page was devoted to a story about placentas and a piece comparing Oregon to Washington.)
Which is all depressing enough. But what’s worse, and what truly brings me to the verge of tears, is that these guys don’t care. That’s the dirty secret you never see mentioned in the papers or on TV. Bush, Chertoff, the whole administrationand, let’s face it, a big chunk of the monied class in this countrythey believe government should not be involved in frivolous pursuits like providing disaster relief, regulating toxic waste, or funding education and health care. Remember Grover Norquist’s infamous quote: “Our goal is to shrink government to the size where we can drown it in a bathtub.” I guess they got a good start in New Orleans.
I’m not sure what these fat cats think government should do, other than help them and their cronies make as much money as possible at our expense. And I’m not sure how they think society will function in the long term once our Congress has been thoroughly transmuted into a new form of petty royalty, indistinguishable from the corporate petty royalty, utterly unaccountable to the public. Perhaps they think they know better than usand better than history. Or perhaps it doesn’t matter, as long as they can live behind locked gates or move to a more civilized country.
How do you fight that?