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by Jim Hightower
BUSH RECONSTRUCTION COMPANY
If I was from New Orleans, I'd be
scared to death right now. Not because of the toxic mud and such, but because of
the answer given by a White House spokesman when asked who is "in charge" of the
federal reconstruction effort on the Gulf Coast: "The president," he
George W!?! The guy who took five days to find New
That's truly a scary thought but it really doesn't matter whether it's
George himself or that gaggle of neocon ideological zealots he keeps around him.
Either way, the chances of the Bushites actually delivering much for the
hard-hit people of this region are slim and none... and you know where slim
If the good folks on the Gulf want to know how Bush & Co.
handles reconstruction jobs, they should telephone Afghanistan. In 2001, our
troops drove the Taliban from power, and George W loudly proclaimed that his
government would soon secure and rebuild the country, providing roads, schools,
clean water, etc.
Four years later, how's it going? Not well, says a new
report by the government's own accountability office. It seems the Taliban is
back, war lords rule most of Afghanistan, and Bush's hand-picked president can't
even travel outside the capitol.
Meanwhile, the $1.6 billion we've spent
so far on reconstruction there has largely been a waste, achieving little that
was promised. Take schools. The nation needed 5,500 of them. How many have U.S.
contractors completed? Eight! They also have refurbished 77 schools, but the
report says that a coat of paint is sometimes counted as "refurbished." Plus,
many of the completed schools have no desks, blackboards, books, trained
teachers, or even drinking water.
This is Jim Hightower saying... Now,
despite Bush's own pledges that he would "stay the course" in Afghanistan, he
reportedly will begin withdrawing from there next year. Maybe he'll dust off
that infamous "Mission Accomplished" banner he used two years ago to claim
"victory" in Iraq.
"Will Bush Deliver?," The New York Times, October 10, 2005.
Years After Invasion in Afghanistan Still Suffers," Austin American-Statesman,
October 16, 2005.
(c) 2005, Copyright - Saddleburr Productions, Inc.
Reprinted with the author's
Posted December 05,
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