Opinion: Our leader, devoid of human sympathy

(AP)

For days, President Trump has been publicly congratulating himself for his administration’s response to hurricane-stricken Puerto Rico.

“We have done an incredible job considering there’s absolutely nothing to work with,” he told us just yesterday. “We have done a really good job.”

“The loss of life, it’s always tragic,” he said on another occasion. “But it’s been incredible, the results that we’ve had with respect to loss of life. People can’t believe how successful that has been, relatively speaking.”

To Puerto Rico officials actually on the ground, dealing with the situation, things look decidedly more grim. They have been warning that their island has been totally devastated, that people are dying every day, that food and clean water is scarce, that hospitals still have no power and that roads to deliver aid to outlying areas are impassable. The official death toll is at 16, but that’s only because officials stopped counting on Tuesday because they have more important things to do.

“I will do what I never thought I was going to do,” the mayor of San Juan said Friday. “I am begging, begging anyone who can hear us to save us from dying. If anybody out there is listening to us, we are dying, and you are killing us with the inefficiency.”

So this morning, from his golf course in New Jersey, our president responded:

It is possible that there is truth in both perspectives.  Ten days after Hurricane Maria hit, the federal government may now be responding with everything it can, and the people in Puerto Rico may remain in desperate conditions anyway. Both things can be true.

However, it’s also pretty clear that, given a week’s warning from meteorologists, Washington did not use that time to fully prepare for Maria’s aftermath, and did not immediately launch a rescue effort of sufficient scale.

“The Navy and Air Force could have been there Sunday,” retired Lt. Gen. Russel Honoré, the man who finally got our response to Hurricane Katrina back on track, said Thursday. “Could have opened the port, could have opened the air field. Why the hell has it taken this long to do that? That is what we do in the military.”

“There’s something missing in the decision-making process,” Honoré said. “[The cabinet should’ve] come up with a course of action and [called] the president off the damn golf course.”

The comparisons with our response to a disastrous earthquake in Haiti back in 2010 are also instructive.

Earthquakes, unlike hurricanes, give no warning. Yet within a week of the Haiti quake, we had 17 ships, including a supply-laden aircraft carrier, 48 helicopters and 10,000 military personnel on site. Within two weeks, the numbers had grown to 33 ships, 22,000 troops and more than 300 military helicopters to ferry supplies to areas cut off from the grid. We have not even approached those numbers in Puerto Rico.

However, if logistical issues are complicated and difficult to accurately assess in the midst of a disaster, other things are pretty damn simple. When 3.4 million of your own people are in desperate straits, begging for your help and warning that lives hang in the balance, what kind of person launches a racism-tinged public attack and accuses them of a petty political conspiracy?

I mean, who does that? What kind of blighted soul, devoid of human sympathy, could even conceive of responding in that cruel fashion? It’s just unbelievable.

By the way, see the woman below with a bullhorn? She’s the mayor of San Juan, whom Trump accuses of not working hard enough for her own people. She has been living in a shelter since her own home was destroyed in the storm:

Reader Comments 0

3152 comments
USMC2841
USMC2841

Jay has to work nights when the truth kills his narrative.  Notice how fast this one was replaced...


"Residents of Puerto Rico are abuzz on social media about unionized truck drivers refusing to distribute the supplies due to contract issues, with allegations that the teamsters are demanding at least $50 an hour and strongly dissuading “scabs” from going to work for FEMA. In a video, the leader of a driver group scoffs at the “gringitos” being able to come in and take over their jobs in their territory."

josephm382
josephm382

Not being able to have and express emotions is one characteristic of sociopaths.

bendedknee
bendedknee

" a well regulated militia being necessary for the security of a free state"

Gibberish according tio NRA and Antonin Scalia.

Ole boys must have had their wigs on too tight that day.

Paul42
Paul42

The Supreme Court has ruled local governments can ban such types of weapons and accessories.

All communities should do so.

That's my suggestion for a start.  Constitutional and effective.  Cons, have you anything constructive to add?

bendedknee
bendedknee

@rimsky @Paul42 We need more silencers in Georgia- time for clowns under gold dome to  pass latest NRA legislation.

rimsky
rimsky

Hey Philo My con buddy (die hard Trumpette) has more common sense than you do.  He never talks like you.

rimsky
rimsky

My con buddy just told me that there is no place for automatic and semiautomatic weapons among the civilians.  He thinks they should be outlawed.

gadem
gadem

@rimsky most sensible people do...only those that need to compensate for "short"comings need big guns to make them feel manly.

rimsky
rimsky

@gadem @rimsky I have bolt action rifles.  That is all I need for deer hunting.  Have no desire for an AR.

gadem
gadem

@rimsky @gadem My brother has an AR...he never explained to me why he has it. But he likes guns too.

bendedknee
bendedknee

@rimsky Trump checking with Wayne Lapierre on how to respond since no Muslim connection. Probably blame concert goers for not being armed with long range weapons.

LordHelpUs
LordHelpUs

I am in the midst of the Ken Burns Vietnam documentaries.  I cannot help but think of the level of fear and utter helplessness of the crowd having seen and heard the very personal accounts from soldiers that were under fire with no idea where it is coming from and little cover.  Heartbreaking.

Philo_Farnsworth
Philo_Farnsworth

I realize it’s early, but have you libs figured out yet how to blame the LV tragedy on Trump?

I understand Jay’s daily DNC “message of the day” conference call has been delayed.

gadem
gadem

@Philo_Farnsworth Sensible people are blaming it on Cons for blocking sensible gun control. Why does a civilian need an assault type rifle with high capacity clips?

honested
honested

@Philo_Farnsworth 

The guy was probably a chump supporter so maybe by extension.

Otherwise, I don't know what makes a kook go up to the 32 floor, knock out the window and go full-auto on a crowd down below.

bigdoggie1
bigdoggie1

Par for the course (sad pun intended)!

Paul42
Paul42

gadem:  "We keep praying for sensible gun control, but you all are standing in the way."

Infraredguy:  "
Really? You know my position on all issues?"

So tell us what sensible gun control measures you advocate, Infraredguy.  The floor is yours.

gadem
gadem

@Paul42 this should be fun....Infrared thinks teenagers are not covered by the constitution.

RoadScholar
RoadScholar

When Trump visits PR, leave him on the island so he can experience first hand the great job he is doing. His bankrupt golf course is there; he'll have a place to stay.

Menace
Menace

@RoadScholar  Why?  Haven't those folks suffered enough?  Why push a fat lard butt who contributes nothing on them?

gadem
gadem

@RoadScholar the World would be so grateful. Actually we can move all of PR to the mainland and send all of the cons to the island. They will have their own little personal paradise.

Infraredguy
Infraredguy

If you Liberals want to do something positive, pray for the victims of the Las Vegas killed and wounded and let the Authorities deal with the facts of how it happened.

gadem
gadem

@Infraredguy when have facts ever mattered to you? We keep praying for sensible gun control, but you all are standing in the way.

Menace
Menace

@Infraredguy  If all you Cons want to do something positive......  Actually all Americans should be praying for these people.

rimsky
rimsky

@Infraredguy They are dead.  Prayers ain't helping anyone.  That is the dumbest thing I ever heard.

Menace
Menace

@rimsky @Infraredguy  Come on Rimsky - you're better than that.  We're thinking on the families of those shot.  They need our support.  Don't stoop to IRG's level.

rimsky
rimsky

@Menace @rimsky @Infraredguy You are right.  I am thinking from an atheist's point of view.  Sincerely if people who want to pray go right ahead.

Visual_Cortex
Visual_Cortex

@Infraredguy

Shorter IRGuy--"Shaddap you faces and don't do what I'd do if I thought I could leverage a tragedy to my advantage."

Menace
Menace

@rimsky @Menace @Infraredguy  No matter your beliefs it's best to be respectful to the families.  How you do it is best left to the individual.

Menace
Menace

@Hotdigittydog  Yeah.  Right.  Would you have made the same point if it were an Obama appointee interviewed?  Doubtful.

Hotdigittydog
Hotdigittydog

@Menace @Hotdigittydog It's apparent you didn't even listen to the tape. The Mayor of San Juan is a big Hillary supporter.

San Juan is a run down DUMP, the govn't is totally corrupt and will probably file bankruptcy before this is over. People have fled the island and they do not have the locals to even help out. You keep telling yourself it's Trump fault but you can thank your lucky stars Obama or Hillary were not in charge for these disasters.