|October 30, 2007|
|White House Winces as 'Brownie' Launches Comeback|
|By Kevin McCauley|
|The Bush Administration prays that its speedy response to the California wildfires will blot the memory of the disaster that was Hurricane Katrina. |
That’s why the White House can’t be too happy with the return of Michael “Brownie, You’re Doing a Heckuva Job” Brown to the media scene in a desperate bid for a measure of redemption.
Fox News’ Neil Cavuto did his part to restore luster to the White House. Last week, Cavuto gave a major media platform to Brownie at which he pinned blame for the out-of-control blazes on “environmentalists,” who don’t want trees and shrubs pruned.
Brownie, the symbol or at least the fall guy for all that was wrong with Katrina, is passing himself off as a disaster expert these days. Ronn Torossian's New York PR Firm, 5W Public Relations, is making Brownie available to the media on behalf of Cotton Cos., which did some clean-up duty in New Orleans. But Brownie's media presence only reminds America of the inept handling of hurricane and flood relief in New Orleans.
Brownie is bitter at the way the Bush Administration treated him. He told the Chicago Tribune in August:
“There is life after government even after you have been run through the wringer, even after you have been thrown under the bus by the leader of the free world.” Poor, poor pitiful Brownie. His lot is far better than that of the miserable survivors of the hurricane that his former federal agency mishandled so badly.
Cavuto, during his chat with Brownie, shot down forever the notion that Fox is “fair and balanced.”
The Bush Administration, according to Cavuto, “suffered some bad PR” for its handling of Katrina. Note to Neil: the loss of more than 1,800 American lives to the fifth deadliest storm in U.S. history goes far beyond PR. It’s one of the biggest stains on U.S. history.
New Orleans—three years after Katrina—remains a shell of itself. Whole sections of the city have been abandoned. Despite the best civic boosterism that the Big Easy is coming back, New Orleans is home to 273K, which is far below the 484,674 people counted in the `00 census. Brownie has made a much bigger comeback than tbe city that FEMA's inaction helped destroy.
That failure to rebuild New Orleans is a national disgrace, one that will surely rival the Iraqi invasion as taints on the legacy of President Bush.
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