Before I get to that (pardon my ADD-ridden train of thought here), did you see the Democratic Convention this week? I hope you at least caught some of it, of course the major networks only covered an hour each night, which is pretty pathetic considering there's nothing good on television right now anyway. Seriously, are reruns of Ugly Betty more important than the fate of the free world? Anyway, if nothing else, I hope you at least caught the speeches from Michelle Obama, Hillary Clinton, Bill Clinton, Joe Biden and Barack Obama, which were all absolutely fantastic. The whole week just seemed to be building up to something big and by the time Obama delivered his amazing speech, it was like the perfect ending to such a beautiful moment in our nation's history.
And hey, don't just take my word for it, staunch conservative, ex-presidential candidate and resident crazy old guy, Pat Buchanan called it the "greatest convention speech in history." If you saw the speech, if you've ever seen any political convention, you know that Pat speaks the honest truth. Barack Obama, love him or hate him, gave one of the all-time greatest speeches Thursday night and truly made me feel like we could take this country back. I haven't been this inspired or excited about my country in a long time and after eight years of the worst president ever, I was really starting to lose hope.
But this blog isn't about Obama's awe-inspiring moment, it's about the Republican reaction. Hours after the speech was over, the McCain campaign responded by saying they might have to delay the Republican Convention that is supposed to start on Monday in Minnesota. Why? Their excuse is Hurricane Gustav, which is threatening to remind the world of the colossal fuck-up that was the Bush administration's response to Hurricane Katrina three years ago. Here's a quote from John McCain:
"But you know it just wouldn't be appropriate to have a festive occasion while a near-tragedy or a terrible challenge is presented in the form of a natural disaster... we're monitoring it from day to day, and I'm saying a few prayers, too."Oh good, he's praying. Nice little empty gesture that requires no actual work. You know John, if your prayer goes unanswered and this Hurricane strikes New Orleans, you might have to consider the fact that God doesn't listen to your prayers. He's probably a little peeved that you tried to insult the intelligence of every woman in America with your horrible VP pick... but again, that's a story for another day.
Actually, the part that really bugs me is the "wouldn't be appropriate to have a festive occasion while a near-tragedy or terrible challenge is presented..." oh really, Senator? Do you remember in my last blog when I posted a picture of McCain and Bush sharing a cake? If not, here it is again:
That picture was taken on August 29, 2005, exactly three years ago this past Friday. They were celebrating John McCain's 69th birthday, eating cake and one could say being "festive." You know what else happened on August 29, 2005? Hurricane Katrina ravaged New Orleans. So when John McCain tells you that it wouldn't be "appropriate" to be festive, what he means is he doesn't want to take the chance of being ripped apart for once again being out of touch and ignorant to the suffering of others. If Katrina had never hit, there would be absolutely no discussion of this convention being delayed and you'd likely see the exact same response to Gustav that you saw to Katrina.
Just like people are seeing through your political pandering with your VP pick, they'll see through this too, Senator. You're damned if you do, damned if you don't in this situation and you know what? You reap what you sow. This is what you get for selling out your "maverick" status by aligning yourself with the Bush Administration just to achieve your selfish desire to be president. You literally had a "let them eat cake" moment during the biggest national disaster in the nation's history with the president who sat on his hands. The beauty of the Katrina aftermath was that it was when the nation woke up and realized that George W. Bush is the worst president this country has ever seen. His presidency went from "mandate" to "lame duck" in a matter of days and he'll go down in the history books as a footnote as a result.
So by all means, try to salvage your campaign by delaying your convention. Lord knows you don't want to follow the Democratic Convention after that speech Obama gave Thursday night, because there will certainly be no comparison. You'll look like an aging grandpa telling kids about the good ol' days while the bright young star tells Americans how we can rescue our country from these disastrous eight years we've had under George Bush, who you voted with 90% of the time. But know this, if you do delay the convention, you won't erase the memories of Bush's utter failure to respond to the horrible disaster that was Hurricane Katrina and you certainly won't keep people from drawing the parallels to today.
Just to show the irony in this situation, some folks over at lunatic evangelical group "Focus on the Family" came out a few weeks ago and told their followers to "pray for rain" in Denver during Obama's outdoor acceptance speech. Of course, we now know the clouds stayed clear despite their childish actions, but now it looks like this storm is going to strike right at the start of the Republican Convention. You know, for the party that constantly runs on "faith," maybe the Republicans ought to consider that God doesn't like being exploited for political gain.
Just to really hammer this point home of how much John McCain only cares about people when he's running for president, he voted "NO" on the Hurricane Health Care for Survivors Amendment, which would have provided Disaster Relief Medicaid to victims of Hurricane Katrina. Remember that when the Republicans exploit this story and call for everyone to "pray for the victims of Gustav" during the convention.