Failure

“Our government failed those people in the beginning, and I take it now there is no dispute about it,” Clinton told CNN. “One hundred percent of the people recognize that — that it was a failure.”

“What can he do? He can just go out and do what he’s doing today, showing that the federal government’s involved, has been involved, will continue to be involved … He cannot listen to every critic from the editorial page of The New York Times,” the elder Bush said.

This blog was once heavily political, and I didn’t really like it then. But everyone in the world who has something to say is saying something about this, and it consistently rings with disgust. My favorite Brit comic book writer has even started a priceless series of posts on his blog called “United States of Meathook,” where he plucks the most fucked up elements of the flood coverage and posts them in a manner that would suggest the country is, indeed, in a wicked downward spiral. Ellis is known to be prescient about world affairs, and has been quoted as saying roughly that it’s really hard to come up with this (sci-fi) stuff when it keeps coming true faster than he can write. In Transmetropolitan, his world-is-going-crazy look at the megacity and fascist government, an inept administration watches carelessly as a “superstorm” pummels a poverty stricken area with huge death tolls.

Ellis’ comic book hero is a renegade journalist who, despite ass-kicking coverage and eventual toppling of the government in question, is constantly outraged that the crooked world leader gets away with his shit every time. That’s one thing about this shitstorm and aftermath, summed up by Clinton and the elder Bush, that gets me: He’s gonna get away with this. Like he always does. People like that dude who commented on my previous post will apologize for incompetence till we’re all dead at it’s hands. Failure is failure, and when it’s the president who fails his people, he deserves to take heaps of backbiting and blame. Bush Sr. says, basically, “Yeah, sure. My son’s administration fucked up bad. But what are ya gonna do? Cut the kid some slack, I mean he’s practically retarded.”

Anyway, bashing aside, I think this is less about the current president’s inept White House, and more about the backward rolling trend in our current political preferences. Situations like the one in New Orleans prove that government is necessary. And as much as you’d like it to not be the case, we need lots of government if we’re going to live in a civillized, sane world. The cowboy attitude of ‘take care of yours and the rest be damned’ isn’t just unwise, it’s immoral. Reactionary conservatism and scaling back on all government programs is faulty, because sometimes, no matter what, people need help. People can’t always take care of themselves, and it’s not their fault. And we help them. Cause we’re not assholes.

Another point this thing makes me think: Is the world ending? I hate all that apocalyptic shit, mainly because every generation thinks and secretly wishes that the world is going to end on their watch. Wait what? Secretly wishes?! That’s right, because when it all comes down to it, leaving behind a safe legacy for our offspring is coupled with a haunting sentiment: I want to see how it ends. I can’t handle dying on a cliffhanger finish. I want to watch it all go down. But as Joe Pernice points out “The World Won’t End,” and he doesn’t say that with optimism, but with disappointment. That said, it’s like everyday, I read about something in the news that makes me think things are only getting worse. Two Supreme Court slots open. The clock radio blares about a jet slamming into a residential neighborhood. The greatest country on earth descends into hellish anarchy, knee-deep in shit and corpses.

The other night I was canvassing on Capitol Hill, and about 8:30 p.m. I hear a series of pops and big booms layered over each other for a solid 15-20 minutes. I look down the street at one point and see joggers in the distance. Or are they running from something? I check my phone to see if DC is being invaded. I knock on a woman’s door and she asks if I know what the booming is. No, I say. “It’s probably just fireworks, but I was afraid we were under attack,” she said. “What else could go wrong, right?” I’m glad I’m not the only one who thought about it.

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