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If Bush Were In The White House, Sandy Would Be An Ongoing Disaster


It’s been six months since Hurricane Sandy ravaged much of the East Coast, but the rebuilding process is far from complete. True, much of the more obvious damage has been fixed and the trains in downtown Manhattan are running again, but further from the public eye, tens of thousands are still homeless despite months of cleanup. A harrowing new piece in the WSJ looks at the failures to address the continued issues and the difficulties faced by those whose houses and livelihoods were destroyed by the storm:

By many measures, the recovery from Superstorm Sandy, which struck Oct. 29, has been slow. From Maryland to New Hampshire, the National Hurricane Center attributes 72 deaths directly to Sandy and 87 others indirectly from causes such as hypothermia due to power outages, carbon monoxide poisoning and accidents during cleanup efforts, for a total of 159. […]

Throughout the region, many businesses are still shuttered, and an already-tight rental market has become even more so because of the destruction of thousands of units and the crush of displaced storm victims looking to rent the ones that survived.

Homeowners are tortured by uncertainty over ever-changing rules on how high they’ll need to rebuild their homes to protect against the next storm; insurance companies have not paid out all that many homeowners expected; and municipalities are borrowing tens of millions of dollars to keep the lights on, the fire trucks running and the police stations staffed, waiting for reimbursement from the federal government for storm expenditures they had to fund out of pocket.

Hurricane Sandy is the most destructive natural disaster this country has seen since Hurricane Katrina in 2005, but there is a marked difference between the coverage of these two tragedies. Seven years ago, the press was inundated with stories like these; today, stories like this one in the WSJ are few and far between.

The Via Meadia team hates bad news as much as anybody, so we are boundlessly grateful that there’s a Democrat in the White House. If we had a Republican president, the press would be rubbing our noses in stories like this non-stop. There would be long and serious analyses of how these failures demonstrated the racism of American society. In Europe, people would be citing the Sandy failures as evidence not only of America’s decline, but of the ineffectiveness of our state and the weakness of our society. Not a night would go by without news broadcasts chronicling the sorry aftermath of the storm and its devastating impact on peoples lives. The NYT in particular would be pulling down Pulitzers for its haunting, unrelenting coverage of a scandalous breakdown in governance and of an indifferent, bumbling White House distracted by quarrels abroad and Washington politics as helpless citizens struggled in the cold.

Fortunately, we’ve got a Democrat in the White House and so the press is sparing us the angst and the second guessing. In fact, unless you happen to be one of the tens of thousands still homeless or their friends and families, you have been free to go about your business without a second thought for the victims of the storm. Sandy is over and everything is fine; nothing to see here, folks, move on.

[Hurricane Sandy image courtesy of Shutterstock]

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  • NoNewt

    Well said; the Fourth Estate has voluntarily merged, in the Obama era, into the Second Estate.

    This is clearly not a good thing for the country or for limited-government or self-rule by citizens. It goes hand in hand, alas, with Donald Kagan’s observations on the contemporary American academy as well:

  • Anthony

    Two thoughts: White House Correspondents’ Dinner and “the press corps wasn’t doing very well….What kind of image do we present to rest of the country? Are we doing their business….” That for me underscores point of Quick Take.

  • Marty Keller

    This kind of disgusting sycophancy among the MSM is, unfortunately, not news. The question for me is, what is the impact upon the citizenry as a whole? Do we buy into this dreck? Do we tune it out? Do we seek alternatives to the Ministry of Truth’s propaganda?

    How we answer these questions will help determine whether America remains the “citie on a hill” or succumbs finally to the progressive dream of European-style social democracy.

    • skhpcola

      The impact is reflected in the reelection of a destructive, hateful Marxist to the highest office in the land. His low-information and ignorant constituency knows what the see on MSNBC and read in the USA Today is gospel, by faith of their leftist religion. If news doesn’t appear in their preferred and partisan media, it didn’t happen, in their altered reality.

  • Corlyss Drinkard

    What really galls is the fact that 40+% said in exit polling that the President’s casual stroll among the Sandy victims influenced them to vote for him. And of those, a shocking percentage said it was dispositive. It’s enough to make a person actually reads up on the issues all year long scream in frustration.

  • Kavanna

    Not to mention the hand-wringing pieces in the NYRoB about “what’s wrong with America.”

    The Sandy victims’ vote for Obama is truly of a piece with the Stockholm syndrome. It’s astounding.

  • WigWag

    Governor Christie, the Republucan Governor of New Jersey gave Obama high marks for handling Hurricane Sandy; so did Mayor Bloomberg the Republucan turned Indepenent Mayor of New York State. The Democratic Governors of New York State and Connecticut also praised the Administration.

    In fact, the only criticism that Christie lobbed towards Washington was directed at the Republicans in the House of Representatives for delaying the appropriation of aid.

    The go to photo for the press was naturally Governor Christie embracing President Obama. The go to picture during the aftermath of Katrina was President Bush praising the head of FEMA with the now famous line “You’re doing a heckuva job Brownie.”

    Has it occurred to Professor Mead that the reason the press is being kinder to Obama than to Bush when it comes to natural disasters is that Obama is actually doing a better job than Bush did? Has Professor Mead considered the possibility that maybe the bipartisan support for Obama’s performance may explain the fact that the press has criticized Obama in the aftermath of Sandy far less than it criticized Bush in the aftermath of Katrina?

    Lamenting that the press is nicer to Democrats than Republicans is not only wrong (and infantile); even worse it accomplishes nothing for Republicans who need to do some real soul searching if they are going to restore their brand.

    • Jim Luebke

      Hi WigWag,

      I count several appeals to GOP authority in this post, with zero appeals to evidence.

      You seem to have a bit of spare time… could you research how far along the post-Katrina recovery had gotten this long after landfall (in terms of people re-housed, etc), and provide an apples-to-apples comparison against the metrics VM uses to criticize Obama?

      You bring up the question, “[Is] the reason the press is being
      kinder to Obama than to Bush when it comes to natural disasters … that
      Obama is actually doing a better job than Bush did?” But you don’t answer it.

  • amishron

    The communist in the White House has caused hurricane Sandy to be worse than Katrina. He is the most inept & corrupt president the United States has ever seen.

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