As one-third of America begins to suffer from the onslaught of the "Storm of the Century", people are preparing to help disaster victims. The President has prepped FEMA to the greatest degree and the disaster will prove his mettle more than anything else in the course of his presidency. The aftermath, however, may prove to be as devastating as the storm itself in terms of compassion - who doles it out and how.
It will provide great photo-ops to the Romney campaign just days before the election, but ... Romney's campaign has gone into overdrive calling to hamper FEMA funding, and unless the Obama Administration screws up big time (which, so far, it hasn't), Romney will have a tough time politicizing this natural disaster.
Think Progress :
"Last year, after a major tornado and flood struck the United States, Romney was asked in a debate about federal disaster-relief funding. Romney not only suggested shuttering FEMA and sending responsibility for disaster relief "back to the private sector," but also said it would be "immoral" for the federal government to fund disaster-relief efforts without cutting the budget elsewhere. "It makes no sense at all," Romney concluded. Watch it:
"Obama advisers say they've learned the lessons from President George W. Bush's widely criticized response to Hurricane Katrina. Bush was seen as ineffective and out of touch, and his presidency never recovered."
The message is clear: Obama is President and
Commander-in-Chief first, and a candidate for the presidency second. It may be
sublime irony for those Romney supporters who need government disaster relief
to realize that the same assistance would not have come under Romney's watch.
The Real Immorality of Frankenstorm - God's Ambulance Chasers
World Net Daily:
"Journalist and White House correspondent William Koenig explained to WND that some of the United States' most catastrophic storms and events have correlated closely with the nation's God-defying attempts to divide the land of Israel."
Yes, the radical Christian right is going into overdrive to explain why Frankenstorm exists and why relief for such a huge natural disaster would merely be giving succor to a nation who defies the will of God. Of course, churches will dole out relief supplies and whole denominations like the Southern Baptist Convention will organize some relief efforts, but the righteousness with which they do it may truly be the most immoral thing about the situation: looking at neighborhood victims with a kind of benign contempt, or blaming a catastrophe on groups such as gays and pro-choice (which you know is forthcoming, a la Jerry Falwell et al) may be the most righteously arrogant act of a group that trumpets its acts and predictions first, rains Bibles on victims second, then distributes food, clothing and medical supplies as an afterthought.
In the coming days we will hear how the East Coast is shaped like a devil, how it signed a pact with the devil, how Obama is the Anti-Christ and how gay marriage in New York beckoned Frankenstorm. The disaster will bring a field day to moralists everywhere and they will not stop until everyone gets the message: liberal America is evil - vote your conscience, vote conservative, vote Romney ... and vote out Obama. They may have only a few days to get the message across, but God's Ambulance Chasers work fast: there will be videos and FOX News pieces (via Mike Huckabee) galore.
Fred God-Hates-America Phelps will gloat ... and the Westboro Baptist Church will probably send out child picketers to victims' funerals.
The ties that bind Romney to the Christian right may be tenuous, but they are ties that Romney wants desperately to strengthen; he may stop short of calling Obama the cause of the storm, but he will certainly feature a strong religious element. He may even distribute Bibles for a photo-op (certainly not the Book of Mormon).
And if Obama weathers the storm as a true Commander-in-Chief, distributing Bibles may be the only thing Romney can do: politicizing it would certainly be ... immoral.