September 14, 2005
Existence Of Poor People A Surprise, Says Bush
Would Have Rescued Them If He Had Known They Were There, He Claims
Yesterday the President took responsibility for the poor Federal response to the New Orleans disaster and indicated that, "to the degree that there was a problem with the Federal response," he ultimately was to blame. He explained that he had previously been unaware that there were "so-called poor people" in New Orleans who "might have needed so-called help."
"I have been living in a bubble," the President admitted. "Until very recently, I didn't know that these so-called 'poor people' even existed." An advisor prepared a DVD containing images of poor people for the President to review last week.
The President said that now he was better informed, his administration would immediately move forward to consider ways of communicating and relating to the poor. "I promise we will try to remedy the problem of our insensitivity to poor people. From now on, we will move them places and promise them things and mention them in speeches," he said.
When aides finally briefed the President on the existence of the poor, the President was reportedly quite surprised to discover that some people do not own cars and are often forced to take public transportation, or even to walk or ride bicycles to get places.
"These poor people must be very fit," the President said.
Asked whether he would do anything to lessen poverty, Bush said, "We're certainly going to think about considering that and ask a lot of questions about giving that some thought."
The President later said that he was considering a plan to make stock options available to poor people at discounted prices in order to help welcome them into the ownership society.
Posted by Tom Burka at 4:15 PM