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Hollow Words From the Hollow Man
Published on Wednesday, September 21, 2005 by the Progressive
Hollow Words From the Hollow Man
by Matthew Rothschild
 

Forget about Bush’s words. Watch his actions.

For all of Bush’s pious pronouncements last week about his concern for racism and poverty on the Gulf Coast, he’s already taken steps that belie that concern.

If he’s so worried about poverty, why did he lift the requirement that government contractors pay the prevailing wage on construction jobs?

If he’s so worried about racism, why did he lift the requirement that government contractors have an affirmative action plan in place?

The answer is obvious. He isn’t worried about poverty or racism. He’s worried about helping out his friends in the business community.

That the disaster vultures like Halliburton are already feasting on Katrina is shameless enough.

But that Bush would use Katrina as an excuse to rollback regulations that help the very people who were hit so hard by this storm is startling in its brazenness.

We shouldn’t be surprised, though.

This is an Administration that has neglected the concerns of the poor and derided the goals of affirmative action from day one.

This is an Administration that believes in no government regulation whatsoever.

And so it seized on Katrina to grant the oil industry a nationwide waiver for fuel blends on gasoline, something the companies have wanted for a long time.

Champion blame-throwers, the Bush people are now trying to pin Katrina on environmentalists.

“Federal officials appear to be seeking proof to blame the flood of New Orleans on environmental groups,” wrote Jerry Mitchell of the Clarion-Ledger on September 16.

“The Clarion-Ledger has obtained a copy of an internal e-mail the U.S. Department of Justice sent out this week to various U.S. attorneys’ offices: ‘Has your district defended any cases on behalf of the (U.S.) Army Corps of Engineers against claims brought by environmental groups seeking to block or otherwise impede the Corps work on the levees protecting New Orleans? If so, please describe the case and the outcome of the litigation.’”

Odd, I thought Bush said he was taking responsibility.

© 2005 The Progressive

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