Bush’s Broken Promises to Katrina Victims

He really does not care: President Bush only roused himself to become engaged in the wake of Hurricane Katrina because it would have been political suicide to do anything less. But he has moved on, and, predictably, so has his government, leaving the citizens of the Gulf Coast to fend for themselves:

Officials from both parties say the bottlenecks have occurred in large part because of a leadership vacuum in Washington, where President Bush and Congress have been preoccupied for weeks with Iraq, deficit reduction, the C.I.A. leak investigation and the Supreme Court.

Less than three months after Hurricane Katrina ravaged New Orleans, relief legislation remains dormant in Washington and despair is growing among officials here who fear that Congress and the Bush administration are losing interest in their plight.

As evidence, the state and local officials cite an array of stalled bills and policy changes they say are crucial to rebuilding the city and persuading some of its hundreds of thousands of evacuated residents to return, including measures to finance long-term hurricane protection, revive small businesses and compensate the uninsured.

“There is a real concern that we will lose the nation’s attention the longer this takes,” said Representative Bobby Jindal, a Republican from Metairie, just west of New Orleans. “People are making decisions now about whether to come back. And every day that passes, it will be a little harder to get things done.”

Officials from both parties say the bottlenecks have occurred in large part because of a leadership vacuum in Washington, where President Bush and Congress have been preoccupied for weeks with Iraq, deficit reduction, the C.I.A. leak investigation and the Supreme Court.

Congressional leaders have been scrambling to rein in spending, and many in Washington have grumbled that Louisiana’s leaders have asked for too much, while failing to guarantee that the money will be spent efficiently and honestly.

By contrast, many say, Washington’s response to the Sept. 11 attacks seemed more focused and sustained.

Now, with the holiday season days away and the 2006 midterm elections just around the bend, many Louisiana officials say they fear the sense of urgency that spurred action in September is swiftly draining away.

By the way, weren’t the Republicans going to investigate the fatal fumbling of the government’s actions during the story? What ever happened with that?

SEC Upgrades Frist Investigation

Reuters:

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission has given subpoena power to investigators looking into the stock sales by Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, said sources familiar with the matter on Wednesday.

Moving to protect the Frist inquiry from any future criticism for not being thorough, the SEC changed its status to formal from informal and gave investigators subpoena power to force individuals to talk or to produce documents or e-mails.

Jeb’s ‘Shared Sacrifice’ – New Hybrid SUV

The Bradenton Herald:

Less than 24 hours after urging Floridians to turn up thermostats and curtail gasoline use in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, Gov. Jeb Bush rode Friday in a white Ford Escape Hybrid…

“It’s kind of hard to be arguing to conserve gasoline when you’re driving around in a Ford Expedition that guzzles it down at a 6- to 8-mile-per-gallon clip,” Bush said after arriving at a northeast Tallahassee Mormon Church where hurricane evacuees were staying…

“This baby outside . . . makes more sense,” Bush said.

…Bush ordered state facilities to raise their thermostats to 78 degrees and take other energy saving measures. He asked all Floridians to do the same as part of a “shared sacrifice.”

Parents Need Camp Too…

The ABC network debuted its latest contribution to the world of reality tv this week. “Brat Camp” examines the reasons why nine kids, boys and girls between the ages of 14 and 17, are shipped off to the wildnerness at the pleas of desperate parents. These chosen youngsters have serious problems ranging from compulsive lying and anger issues to drug addiction and stealing.

How has this happened? How does an entire population of adolescents become so self-absorbed? I blame it on parents. That’s right. I said it. Parents aren’t doing their jobs.

Hmmmm….brat camp. Love the concept. As a sixth grade teacher of English, reading, and world history, I can think of quite a few of my students who could benefit from 40 days in the wilderness. Forty days without their handheld video games, portable cd players, cell phones, and skateboard/dirt bike/hip-hop magazines. In addition to their poor reading and writing skills, today’s “tween” generation lacks serious social skills. These kids have no respect for authority, be it in parent or teacher form. They have obvious apathy for everything that does not pertain to them.

How has this happened? How does an entire population of adolescents become so self-absorbed? I blame it on parents. That’s right. I said it. Parents aren’t doing their jobs. With that in mind, I believe that while their children are off dealing with their various issues, the parents should be also be engaged. I envision crash courses in parenting. They could learn to communicate with their children in a way that involves actual dialogue. They could learn to put down THEIR cell phones, PDAs, and remote controls long enough to listen to their kids. Parents that claim their little angels slowly became monsters over the years have to learn to intervene. You cannot be your daughter’s or son’s best friend. Put your foot down!! When your 11-year old is caught smoking pot or drinking, you deal with it right then and there. Kids have to know that there are boundaries, some bigger than others, that they cannot cross. Allowing the behavior to continue only allows it to fester into worse habits or mindsets. Be a parent and PARENT! And in the meantime, check out “Brat Camp” on ABC, Wednesday nights at 9 p.m.