Saturday, February 18, 2006

Crisis Response Management Perceptions Weakened By Mishandling Of Katrina And Cheney Incidents

One lasting effect of this last week's overly drawn-out Cheney incident , was that Cheney has weakened his image as a steely-eyed Administration "attack dog". Rather than being viewed as a symbol of strength, Cheney is now viewed as an inept, "Elmer Fudd", incapable of handling even a minor crisis. Rather than the Bush Administration being viewed as being able to "best protect" Americans from terrorism or other serious incidents, this Cheney ineptness along with the infighting and ineptness over the Katrina disaster has created the perception of a weak crisis response team running the White House.

It seemed to be no mere coindence that Mr. Bush was offering a speech on Friday touting "Administration strengths" in dealing with terrorism or other crisis response. Yet the speech was a revisionist history in which Bush claimed that he "knew we were under attack" while reading to the Florida schoolchildren, yet the video proof from the morning of 9/11 proved Bush to not really know how to respond, and instead continued to read to the Florida schoolchildren. It would be difficult to imagine FDR doing the same when notified of the Pearl Harbor attack.

Just like in the "Wizard Of Oz", a weak and mortal man stands behind a curtain and projects an awesome image of power that is a complete fraud, the Bush Administration has managed to manipulate the national security image as a campaign and political image, yet the Cheney incident and Katrina response handling both only serve to point out a White House not able to
manage crisis as well as they claim in politically charged speeches. They routinely accuse Democrats of some claimed weakeness in crisis response, yet the White House miserably falls short in every opportunity to respond to major incidents since 9/11 such as the Katrina hurricane and management of the Cheney incident.


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