Saturday, January 01, 2005

Jeb goes to the Indian Ocean

"Bush is sending a a delegation to the region Sunday led by Powell and his brother, Fla. Gov. Bush, to assess aid needs.
from Friday's Wall Street Journal

You go, Jeb!

There is probably no one on the planet better equipped to contribute to relief coordination than Jeb Bush. I don't know what the etiquette is of sending your brother and/or a governor on something like this; I've no doubt that cries of nepotism and dynasty and yada yada blah blah will be just around the corner. Notwithstanding the inevitable yapping of the pocket dog contingent, Jeb is the best man to go.

He's not George. If Jeb were president, Mineta would've been fired probably before Sept. 11, but certainly after. Jeb will actually fire people who do a crappy job. If he doesn't have the authority to fire someone who deserves it, he just steps out of their way and lets them have enough rope to hang themselves.

He'll have a far more difficult time with the tsunami than with the hurricanes; the scale is much greater and the cooperation will be much, much, less. Instead of honest concern from one southern US state to another, he'll be dealing with nasty, petty, puffed-up daughters of a horseleech. With the hurricanes, he had advance warning, real authority and a reasonable knowledge of what tools were available. He'll have none of those things with the tsunami efforts. & of course he won't be running the show; he'll just one of a committee in a sea of egos. So he won't be as useful as he would under other circumstances.

Poor Jeb. I really got the feeling during the hurricanes that 'this is not what I wanted to be when I grew up.' But he stepped up to the plate.

Anyway, time to deal proactively with the pocket dog contingent:

"Why isn't George Bush going himself? 'The people' need the symbolism of the actual President, not some surrogate!"

ACtually, no, you're mistaken. People who are homeless, hungry, and helpless need food, shelter and clothing. People who are physically traumatized need physical help. People who are emotionally traumatized can suck it up. No offense to George, but Jeb will be more useful than his brother. Honestly, between security and yes-men, the presence of a US President would probably just muck things up.

and furthermore,:

"In countries like India or Indonesia, where family ties are more significant to personal success or even survival, the presence of First Family member will be taken seriously, . ." (RTWT)

so quit being so damn ethnocentric.

Dynasty!! Royalty!! Nepotism!!

Give me a list of US officials with comparable experience and expertise, and then we'll talk. Neither George Bush nor Rudy Guliani make that list, by the way. September 11 was physically concentrated in a way that hurricanes and tsunamis are not; the logistics have to be very different.

Of course, the Red Cross and Salvation Army have experience in these areas, but they are already there and are not US officials.

Yeah, well, Florida still hasn't recovered from the 2004 hurricanes. Jeb isn't so great.

Hell, there are parts of Florida that still haven't recovered from Andrew, for pete's sake. Hurricanes are big and devastating. You can't wave a magic wand and undo what's happened. You can, however, minimize the damage and move on.

Godspeed, Governor. We'll keep the homefires burning.

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