Olbermann: Twin Disasters, Natural… and Government-Made

Keith Olbermann packed a whallop on Countdown tonight – “The “city” of Louisiana”. The hits to the Bush administration keep on coming…

Watch the video here – Hat tip to Canofun.com

SECAUCUS — Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff said it all, starting his news briefing Saturday afternoon: “Louisiana is a city that is largely underwater…”

Well there’s your problem right there.

If ever a slip-of-the-tongue defined a government’s response to a crisis, this was it.

The seeming definition of our time and our leaders had been their insistence on slashing federal budgets for projects that might’ve saved New Orleans. The seeming characterization of our government that it was on vacation when the city was lost, and could barely tear itself away from commemorating V.J. Day and watching Monty Python’s Flying Circus, to at least pretend to get back to work. The seeming identification of these hapless bureaucrats: their pathetic use of the future tense in terms of relief they could’ve brought last Monday and Tuesday — like the President, whose statements have looked like they’re being transmitted to us by some kind of four-day tape-delay.

But no. The incompetence and the ludicrous prioritization will forever be symbolized by one gaffe by of the head of what is ironically called “The Department of Homeland Security”: “Louisiana is a city…”

Politician after politician — Republican and Democrat alike — has paraded before us, unwilling or unable to shut off the “I-Me” switch in their heads, condescendingly telling us about how moved they were or how devastated they were — congenitally incapable of telling the difference between the destruction of a city and the opening of a supermarket.

And as that sorry recital of self-absorption dragged on, I have resisted editorial comment. The focus needed to be on the efforts to save the stranded — even the internet’s meager powers were correctly devoted to telling the stories of the twin disasters, natural… and government-made.

Read the entire transcript here.

Hat tip to my sister in FL, who is lurking here at the Dem Daily… she emailed me this “Countdown just did a very thorough slamming of BUSH…Best I have heard yet!”

Bookmark and Share

About Pamela Leavey

Pamela Leavey is the Editor in Chief, Owner/Publisher of The Democratic Daily as well as a freelance writer and photographer. Pamela holds a certificate in Contemporary Communications from UMass Lowell, a Journalism Certificate from UMass Amherst and a B.A. in Creative Writing and Digital Age Communications from UMass Amherst UWW.
Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Olbermann: Twin Disasters, Natural… and Government-Made

  1. Ben Mercadante says:

    Good piece…Olbermann really sounds disgusted and tired of hearing the “same old same old” but he usually holds on to the bone longer, lets see how long. On the other hand, Chris Mathews, Brian Williams and the rest of the bobble heads seem to have already given Bush a pass. Today on Special Edition Hardball, Mathews: ” Brian, what do you think the people in the storm area think about president Bush heading up the investigation into what went “right” and what went “wrong” during this emergency response?” Brian Williams: ( on ground in NO, doing a segment for Mathews) He goes into some question asking, not real sure what he says, then he states ” Not that I want to deflect the question, but I think it will be left to the minds of these affected individuals and they will reflect on this some other time in the future”…and Chris Mathews nods in agreement , and Bush & Co. get free pass etc. as per. “Hardball” we used to play better whiffle ball then this. I wrote Olbermann praising his editorial, now I must send Chris my usual note of dissapointment in his journalistic efforts, I am sure he waits with baited breath.

  2. Ben

    I totally lost it last night reading Brian Williams blog on Nightline or whatever the heck it is. That NBC didn’t give that report from the weather service in full strength just incenced me to no end.

    I sent Brian Williams a pice of my mind last night.

    Olbermann was great, I love his wit. I don;t think we’ll see any passes from him in the near future.

  3. Ben Mercadante says:


    Somebody needs to shake B. William’s cage…some of these people are so out of touch, just over groomed like an in-breed pedigree.

  4. Ben

    I was in NH for the primary and he was at the Kennedy event for JK. I was in the traveling press area, with all the media folks and all these big name reporters were there trudging in from the freezing cold… wearing thier winter gear. We were packed in like sardines, everyone jostling for a view or to get a good photo and I turn and look and there’s Williams in the corner with lights and a make up team and backdrop. I looked at my daughter and we both giggled. That was after Russert growled at me because I got him confused with Tweety Matthews.

  5. Ben Mercadante says:

    Now that’s a good one..Tweety Mathews, I have a friend that really likes Mathews, or at least thinks he is “doing a fair job”…at any rate this should get his goat…teehee. Yea, ( brian’s face ) it seems those at or shooting for the “first” chair have their priorities.

  6. Ben

    Ironically Chris Matthews and JK are good friends. I’ve always wondered who he voted for.

  7. Nick says:


    Even scarier, Tweety Matthews worked for President Carter as a speechwriter. After Carter’s loss he went to work for Tip O’Neill, even convincing Tip to make a guest star appearance on Cheers. Hard to believe this is the same guy who has sold out to the GOP like he has. Hardball? Yeah, only if your a liberal. If not, we throw you hanging breaking balls.

  8. Nick

    Tip O’Neill on Cheers. I remember that. Maybe Tweety will wake up one day.

  9. Ben Mercadante says:

    Well I do not watch the cable as much as most, ( I do some monitoring) so I do not see Matthews on a regular basis, but whiffle ball seems to be in order much of the time I have viewed, and of course he was typically dealing with a Bush apologist or the like.
    If I watch enough mainstream my blood pressure goes up…so I stick to Jon Stewart , Air America etc…maybe not realistic, but keeps my pressure down…and of course I read. So Chris and the rest can keep on lobbing them in there, I chucked them all in several years ago.

  10. Ben

    I don’t even have cable! If I can live stream online or catch a video after, that’s it for me. Reading the news is prefered and easier on the system. I love Air America, but forget to turn it on most days when I am working. We also have a good NPR station out here in L.A. that is well balanced and I enjoy listening to them.

  11. Ben Mercadante says:

    I have to stream Air America as I am in a very conservative region ( central Fl) …so I can only do it when I am doing data entry , or in my free time of course. Our NPR is out of USF and that school used to be rad…is now under Jeb’s thumb…and the NPR station sucks, but we do have a decent FM community radio station. I wish we would get AAR just so it would piss off the ultra -rights an the local red-necks, but I think they are afraid of the market here, or maybe no station has the guts to take it on…don’t know.