In the days following Hurricane Sandy, many on the left were buoyed by the opportunity the disaster afforded the president. It gave him a chance temporarily to suspend “campaigning” (read: heckling his opponent with puerile schoolyard taunts) and appear “presidential.” He could show the world how a real leader, and not some bumbling Texas cowboy, responds in the face of adversity. Supposedly he accomplished this mission by phoning New York governor Andrew Cuomo three (count ‘em, 3) times on Wednesday and touring the storm-ravaged New Jersey coast two days later wearing a monogrammed Air Force One bomber jacket and a look of appropriately studious concern.
On Saturday, he was back in full campaign mode. Never mind that 1.9 million homes and businesses are still without power, much less hope, that residents of the New York City borough of Queens have armed themselves to fend off looters, or that lawlessness has descended on the two-mile-long lines for fuel in New Jersey. Obama has already saluted FEMA director W. Craig Fugate (“heckavu job, Fugatey”) and washed his hands of the whole affair.
But while he turns his attention back to attacking Mitt Romney, the storm rages on. After announcing that the U.S. Department of Defense was opening mobile fuel stations in New York City and on suburban Long Island, where consumers could fill up their tanks for free (guess who foots the bill), the government did an about-face. The Associated Press reports that residents who showed up, gas cans in hand, were told to go away and stay away until law enforcement agents, firefighters, EMTs, and other first responders had gotten their fill. The National Guard was called in to make sure the citizenry obeyed.
In case you’re wondering where the fuel is coming from, the president has opened the Strategic Petroleum Preserve. One might note in fairness to the administration that that’s what the SPP is there for, but the president—his fibs during the debates to the contrary—has been stubbornly anti-oil even as he has gone all in with taxpayer money on his green energy pipedreams. During his term in office, crude oil production has decreased substantially. All of what has been produced, moreover, is thanks to drilling permits issued during the Bush or Clinton administrations.
Heckavu job, Obamy.
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