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Nero fiddles while Rome burns

Waves wash oil onto beach near south pass of Mississippi River

Is it me, or does this seem like just about the most amazing tone-deafness by President Obama so far? While fish, birds, animals, and people fight to survive the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, President Obama chose to fly to San Francisco to attend three political fund-raisers, one at the home of Gordon Getty, an oil heir.

President Obama, facing criticism that his administration has failed to respond aggressively to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, assured supporters in San Francisco on Tuesday that “the situation in the gulf is heartbreaking, and we’re doing everything we can.”

“Nobody is more upset than me, because ultimately,” he said, “when this happens on your watch, you are thinking, how does this get solved?”

Is this a joke? Am I still dreaming–trapped in a nightmare that won’t end?

Obama spoke to a VIP reception of about 200 people and later to a sold-out crowd of about 800 at a reception at the Fairmont Hotel, two of his three appearances Tuesday to bulk up the campaign coffers of Democratic U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer, who will face strong Republican competition this fall in her bid for a fourth term. [….]

After the Fairmont event, which was expected to raise at least $1.7 million from supporters who paid $250 to $2,000 for tickets, Obama was whisked to an exclusive VIP dinner at the Broadway mansion of wealthy oil heir Gordon Getty and his wife, Ann.

Inside the lavish home of the philanthropist son of oil tycoon J. Paul Getty, some 80 donors wrote checks for $35,200 per couple to meet the president and have their photo taken with him. Boxer’s campaign raised $600,000 from the two events, while the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee took in $1.1 million, organizers said.

And tomorrow, the emperor is off to Chicago for a relaxing weekend, while the rest of us agonize over a global ecological catastrophe that is destroying one of the most beautiful and productive parts of our country. Is he holding a fund-raiser in Louisiana on Friday too, I wonder?

But no one is more upset than he is.

95 Responses

  1. I don’t know how much more of this I can handle without running screaming into the street and ending up in a straightjacket.

  2. But no one is more upset than he is.

    How embarassing. He has no shame at all.

  3. I am sending all my energu waves now towards the last attempt of closing the gusher by restoring the material they took out – may it work for planet’s sake!
    Glad to know Obama isn’t resting till the “spill” is contained!
    Adding the tabloids from downstairs

  4. When will people realize that Obama is just an actor, a front? His real job is to go anywhere or do anything that distracts people from real problems.

    Now he has that pesky immigration problem. Why think? Just enact a watered down version of W’s border control plan… This administration just waits for a crisis to happen and then picks up W’s ideas which seem to be the only ones “lying around”…

  5. I just heard on CNN that the Mineral and (blank…missed it could have been Oil) Agency in charge of monitoring oil companies etc…, had a corrupt operation where gifts were exchanged, (blank?… missed what that was as I was trying to look at some doc they put up) and they were having SEX with the folks from the oil companies?????? The last one left me with a WHAT did they say?

    Did anyone else see that?

    • Yes, that’s already been reported in the papers. MMS is filled with muck and corruption.

    • mineral management services?

      I heard the other day that they were allowing BP to fill out their own inspection reports and then just signing off on them.

      • He must have been too busy with his waffle to bring change and transparency to MMS.

  6. … and skipping out on Memorial Day ceremonies held at Arlington National Cemetery where the President usually lays a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
    More red meat for the Red Staters.
    Masha, Obama is not an actor, that would require an effort on his part. Memorizing lines is hard work.

    • Skipping out on Memorial Day really shows disrespect for the veterans, and even for the job of president he wanted so badly.

      I guess he will leave that boring, ordinary job for Joe Biden.

    • yes, he is more like a reader than an actor.

    • This isn’t going to go over to well. Good. We need a responsible adult at the helm. Just don’t see the Republicans nominating one though.

  7. I wish my favorite superhero group, the Legion of Super-Heroes, really existed.

    Or the Justice League.

    Or the Justice Society.

    Or the Avengers.

    Or the X-Men.

    Hell, at this point, I’d settle for these guys: 😛

  8. Does anyone else find it obscene that 80 “mystery” guests would pony up over $32,000 for a dinner with Obama? Our society is truly decadent now and our political system more corrupt than any banana republic.

  9. HAL 9001 is suffering a fit of paranoia again.

    “I’m afraid I can’t let that through, Dave–er, Ivory Bill.” :mrgreen:

  10. I find it hard to believe that Obama will skip the ceremony at Arlington. He is The Commander in Chief, not Joe Biden.
    Watching MSNBC this am I was struck by their polls. Regarding immigration and the issue of Arizona, they kept harping on poll numbers showing Hispanics disapproving and whites approving. Funny how they don’t include African Americans in their polls on this. Its only whites that are racist toward the illegal immigrants although they displace AA workers in much greater numbers as far as jobs go.
    Everything else in broken into black and white in their other polls, why not in this one?

    • I find it hard to believe that Obama will skip the ceremony at Arlington. He is The Commander in Chief, not Joe Biden.

      But, at least he wears a flag pin now, has flags draped around him when he speaks, and gets prayers e-mailed to his blackberry every morning. That’s the important thing. 🙄

    • if you want tougher immigration laws does that make you racist? There are so many things that make you racist these days, I can hardly keep up.

    • He’s more a Fund-Raiser in Chief, really. It’s his score competency. And Memorial Day is so filled with, well, you know, dead guys and old geezers. It’s so un-hip.

  11. Nobody is more upset than me, because ultimately,” he said, “when this happens on your watch, you are thinking, how does this get solved?”

    Maybe he could use that military of his for something other than war. But, I guess he’s not that upset.

    • At least President Bush finally brought back some of the National Guard from Iraq for Katrina. Finally.

      We can send the Guard to the border for immigration but not the Gulf because…?


  12. The Hollow Man strikes again with empty words, making a national tragedy all about him. And how appropriate that his words were addressed to a bunch of muckety-mucks on the West Coast. Getty, no less.

    I thought the President was making an obligatory trip to the Gulf on Friday before setting off for another vacation to Chicagoland? Someone at the WH must have suggested he needs to at least act like he’s moderately concerned. “Plug the damn hole,” doesn’t quite do it.


    • Same group he visited during the primaries when he condescended to the ignorant rubes clutching their guns and religion. Those are his people–the $32K dinner crowd.

  13. Are any of the msnbc shills reporting/commenting on his fund-raising during this crisis?
    Yesterday or was it day before that, Chuck Todd was on Morning Joe spinning like crazy for the WH. Afterall, he needs his access and is writing a book about Obama.

    Jonathan Alter just came out with a pro-Obama book; too late, Alter, his poll numbers are sinking which means your timing is off and you might not rake in the big bucks like you were hoping to.

    The media is so corrupt and absolutely shameless about their own corruption. They give whoring a bad name.

    • I used to watch Morning Joe because even though he has some beliefs/ideas I disagree with as a liberal democrat, he used to be honest.
      In the last few days they have twice had White House shills on defending Obama while Joe is busy saying, “Plain has stronger ties to BP then Obama because she chanted “.drill baby drill”.
      I find that a stunningly ignorant point of view. They don’t even bother to look at her record in Alaska or Obama’s ties to BP.
      I think Joe too must have been given his orders from the corporate owners. Or perhaps he just has fallen into the trap of becoming part of the incestuous media social club.

      • You’re right about that. If he wants his paycheck he has to follow orders. He’s also part of the borg now and must take occasional sips of the kool-ade.

        • yup..

          I guess you could figure out I meant Palin… lol
          I am so disappointed in Joe. He used to be a no BS kind of guy even when he was being a conservative jerk.

          • He gets some vile attackers on twitter from the right (and the left). Sometimes he pushes back. Probably spills over on air.

      • My guess is they’ve got something on him—probably about Lori Klausutis.

        • Who?

        • That’s not a bad guess, IMO.

        • Dead intern.

        • yes I have always wondered about his abrupt departure from the congress. On the other hand I think he may have been too lazy to raise money. It is the really sh*tty part of the job and not everyone can or wants to do it.

        • Yes, he’s been airing that out too. Surprised by how much crap he’s willing to engage with on twitter. Jake Tapper the same, on twitter and facebook. I give them both props for listening at least.

          In Scarborough’s case, I don’t think NBC controls him very much. It’s case by case with these guys. This simple view of “our corporatist masters control everything that spews forth in the media and we are so powerless” is somewhat naive and frankly defeatist. The business and editorial dynamics are more complicated than that and ultimately more available to influence by the public, if people are willing to understand and make the effort.

    • They talked about it on Morning Joe this morning. That’s where I heard about it. I think Dakinikat is right–the tide is finally turning in the MSM. Obama will not be reelected.

  14. “Plug the damn hole,”

    Wow, that kind of tough guy talk will surely make a difference.

    • yeah his pie hole

    • In other words, now he’s pissed because it’s starting to affect HIM, and his political image. Just “fix it!” instead of actually taking charge of the details and getting the problem solved. The Prince thinks he can just command the little people to make the problem go away while he takes a weekend off in Versailles (er…Chicago).

    • This is so that “if” they BP catch a lucky break and the oil stops flowing, he, Teh 0ne, can take credit for getting tough and getting results..

      • I think you’ve got it. It’s like how Reagan said “take down that wall” and ended communism in Europe and the cold war all at one time.

  15. This might be a good test for the American public. The blatant corruption and lack of concern is appaling, but obvious. If this administration continues to curry enough favor and support to stay in power, it means that we are a stupid people and we deserve to be subjected to the mess that we voted in. If, on the other hand, the people see that this puppet and his minions are idiots that have no business in office, then maybe we can use the next 2 presidential cycles to start the arduous task of fixing the world.

    • I always get frustrated at pointing the finger at the voters. IF the voters were allowed their say Obama would not have been the nominee and would have never been elected President.

      As long as elections are fixed we will continue to get corrupt officials. There seems to be no end to this vicious circle.

      • Amen to that. We can’t forget that Hillary won, except for those damned superdelegates.

        • When people blame the voters, I am going to start asking them to show me where Presidents Gore and Hillary are listed in the encyclopedia so that I can read about all the horrible things that the American people voted for.

        • except for those damned caucuses…

          except for becoming Democrats for a day…

          except for gerrymandered voting districts…

          except for the Calendar…

          except for one candidate running with TWO less States…

  16. Oil spill response out of control
    By David Gergen, CNN

    Here at home, one hears that by Wednesday dawn, we will know whether BP’s latest big try to stop the oil spill will work. If it does, we can begin to feel that we are moving in the right direction, but if it doesn’t — well, no one is quite sure what Plan D looks like. Is this really where we have come: that the fate of our precious coastlines and the waters off our coasts are in the hands of a single foreign-based company?

    A month ago, it looked like the White House was on top of this problem, as Cabinet officers scurried here and there, the Coast Guard and others swung into action, there were talks with BP, and the president paid a personal visit. But increasingly, it has become apparent that the federal government may be present but is not in charge.

    It keeps saying that BP bears ultimate responsibility. It is keeping the press away. No wonder James Carville, Chris Matthews and Donna Brazile exploded late last week. They are right on a basic point: Ultimately it is not the responsibility of BP or any other company to protect American interests but the responsibility of the federal government. Some Obama supporters have argued that the 1990 Oil Pollution Act limits the president’s capacity to take action. Others disagree. Either way, in an emergency, laws can be changed.

    It may take a while, but Americans are going to start feeling a lot happier about our country when we once again believe we have strong control of own destiny. Leadership, anyone?


    • Some Obama supporters have argued that the 1990 Oil Pollution Act limits the president’s capacity to take action

      F-that shit…like any law is a impediment to what they want to do. If ” rule of law” suddenly surfaces, it’s funtion is to be a fig leaf . If the POTUS tells me he cannot take over a site 40 miles off our shore, he is a lying scum bag.

      • The WH routinely ignores the Constitution but it lets a law passed in 1990 tie it’s hands.

    • yes, they bear responsibility, which is why they should be f-ing prosecuted for their crimes, and not be left in charge!!!!!!!!

      there’s some kind of fundamental disconnect here.

    • If only Donna Brazile and Chris Matthews had really exploded.

  17. Gee…I wonder why.

    Poll: Public Opinion of Democratic Party at All-Time Low

    Americans are dissatisfied with both major political parties, but the public’s approval of the Democratic Party is at its lowest level ever, a new CBS News poll shows.

    Favorable views of the Democratic Party dropped 20 points in the past year to 37 percent, according to the poll, conducted May 20 – 24. Last month, the party’s favorability rating stood at 42 percent.


  18. From right wing media:

    “The guy who owns the hotel on the Redneck Riviera who just saw his Beach Week business disappear or the environmentalist in anguish for the krill may technically be more upset, but the president is making a larger point about how really, really angry he is.”http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/blogs/beltway-confidential/Morning-Must-Reads—-White-House-looks-to-shift-spill-blame-to-Cheney–94914299.html

    And a comment at the Obama-centric Balloonjuice:

    Actually, the Establishment in the Gulf States, Republican as it is, should be grateful to the president for setting an example of how to express your anger in an acceptable manner. Washington Examiner
    Judging from the comments at the Gulf newspapers online, I have concluded that some of these people already have their pitchforks and are working on the torches.
    And, yes, they probably all own guns, too.
    Seriously. Some of these folks have actually thought about an armed uprising.
    What do they hope to achieve? A government that doesn’t lie to them. A government that won’t say the equivalent of, “Don’t you worry your pretty little head, Darling. Big Daddy has the situation under control and everything will be okay.”
    -Linda Featheringill http://www.balloon-juice.com/2010/05/15/and-then-obama-blew-up-that-oil-rig-and-tried-to-get-away-blame-free/

  19. Nobody is more upset than me, because ultimately,” he said, “when this happens on your watch, you are thinking, how does this get solved?”

    It’s ALL about him of course. And I’m thinking there are many millions way more upset than the too bored to do squat One. He’s only response is, as always, a petulant foot stamping ” someone fix it now so I can eat my waffles!!” I just saw a head line ” For the short term Oil spill provides a job boom! ” Oh, so it’s a good thing! That kind of tells me it is indeed disaster capitalism that is setting the molasses DC pace generally. They must think they can control the disaster , like the wars, but I beg to differ.

  20. I know this sounds like woulda, coulda , shoulda, but Hardass Hillary would have had someone’s (in fact a whole bunch of someone’s ) balls on the chopping block weeks ago. American’s wanted a wishy-washy hoper and that’s what they got.

    Obama is another coward of the same cloth as Bush. He is perfectly happy boming the shit out of distant countries, killing civilians by the thousands. \I guess using a drone to your fighting is somehow manly. But he will not do a damned thing to protect this country when it is truly in danger. In my opinion, this manmade oil volcanic eruption (not an oil spill) is an attack on the Gulf of Mexico by a private corportation.

    And what does Obama do? He hands over control of tarmy (or in this case Coast Guard) to the invader.

    • Hillary would have had someone’s (in fact a whole bunch of someone’s ) balls on the chopping block weeks ago.

      Indeed and within days, if not hours …which is exactly why she wasn’t allowed to gain her victory. The powers that be see dollars signs where we see dead pelicans

    • Americans DIDN’T want a wishy washy hoper. They wanted Hillary Clinton, but the DNC , the MSM and the thugs in the Obama campaign had other ideas.
      More democrats voted for her and exit polls showed she would have beat McCain bigger than Obama did.

    • Hillary Clinton would — at minimum — have been more accountable than this worthless suit in the WhiteHouse.

      • yes she would and she would tell us the hard truth at the start not pussy foot around saying she was on it from day one, while doing nothing.

        • Based on her response to 9-11, I feel fairly certain Hillary would have been right there, getting a grasp on the situation, and, more likely than not, actually getting her hands dirty. That’s what the DNC/PTB (powers that be) have stolen from us–a president who can study, comprehend, act, and inspire. And in contrast to B0, she deeply loves our country, which is sadly lacking in the fraudulent puppet president.

  21. The following comment on WKRG’s SpillCam site links to some disturbing videos:


    TellUsTheWholeStory Says:
    Tue, May 25, 2010 at 8:45 pm

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PASvown8rFM oil flow 1/3
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vwCn7BhqVaE oil flow 2/3
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bgNLmFKUf3M oil flow 2/3

    Looks as if something did not go well at all.

    (I’ll try to embed the video….)

  22. W2 is sidestepping the oil spill problem for the same reason W sidestepped Katrina. He doesn’t want to get his hands dirty. If he actually takes on the probelm he is afraid that he will own it. Bush wasn’t callous or racist, he just wanted someone else to be on the hook if it went bad.

    The Precious says it is BP’s fault and BP’s responsibility, but it is OUR ocean, OUR coastline and in a weird way it’s OUR freakin’ billions of dollars of oil going completely to waste.

    By dragging his feet to avoid blame W became the total goat in Katrina and W2 is following in his footsteps. Everyone knew that the hurricane had nothing to do with Bush but his obvious shirking after the fact doomed him. How dumb do you have to be follow in the footsteps of the dumbest President in history?

    Anyway, I think the Reverend Al Sharpton put it best when he said, “Pharaoh twiddled while Rome Burned.”

    Yeah Al, close e-damned-nough.

  23. Guinnesss Nelson Sees `Fantastic’ Chance to Buy BP
    (interesting how the wealthy think)

    • They are tipping thier hand…if they can’t have a new war, by God , they can at least have a dead Gulf !

    • I think first we should put him on an inner tube and drop him in the middle of the gulf for a few days.

      • lol!!! I’ll bring the feathers…this would be a tar and feathering, via oil spill

        • really, talk about having no clue. Let’s let him have sun block though. I’ve had some of those Gulf coast sun burns before.

    • BP has lost 29 billion in market value in the past month, above and beyond the drop in the S&P.

  24. Waiting until Friday to visit the Gulf. Mr. President apparently wants to make sure that as many people as possible are camping for Memorial Day when the spotlight is on him.

    • What’s the rush? It’s not like that oil gusher is going anywhere, right?
      He disgusts me.

  25. Top Down Kill:
    Spill response: Pumping bullshit

    CNN: How is that neither the government nor bp were prepared to deal with a spill this big, or this deep without adequate safeguards being put in place? how did they even get permission to drill without a having a disaster plan?

    Browner: Well there are plans, um, the states have plans, the drillers are required to have plans, there are plans and obviously this is a very, very, uh, large, complicated situationand what we are doing right now is making that sure all the best minds are brought to bear and that BP, we’re not relying on BP, that their expertise is being taken advantage of, but we’re making sure everything is being done to get this thing shut down.

    CNN: Well you said that there plans, but it would, a pretty clear indication from what we’re seeing now 36 days out that their plans were wholly inadequate. So how did they ever get through?

    Browner: Well for example, each of the states have plans in terms of what needs to be protected, what’s their most sensitive areas, we are working with the governors, uh, we’re on the phone with the president when he spoke with the governors, we speak to the governors daily…


    Sent from my iPhone

  26. I wonder how much longer the citizens of Louisiana, Mississippi, Florida will have to wait before the Gulf becomes a cesspool…….

  27. Is it any wonder why both parties don’t want to count our votes in Florida? We suffer from immigration problems and all the issues related to drilling for oil in our coastal waters. Wasn’t it Cape Cod that couldn’t handle the idea of building a wind farm off their coastline? What other problems do they have to deal with? I have a friend whose job it is to count birds there. Thats a Federal Gov’t job by the way.
    When will Obama declare a State of Emergency? That frees up lots of money. I read on FDL today that their bloggers were at the beach near New Orleans. Its Royal something. They noticed that although the beach is covered with oil and closed, there are no oil booms to be seen anywhere. I’ve got hand it to Jindal. He’s passionate. This is what I’d feared with Obama. The Republicans will be able to make a comeback. Prepare to have the most right-wing, conservative Congress we’ve had since Newt Gingrich and their Contract With America. Imagine the steps they’ll take to cut the deficit – all thanks to Obama and this pathetic Congressional leadership.
    I watched the hearings this morning with Salazar, it was the usual “blame Bush”.

  28. “Now watch this drive….”

  29. News seems to think they may have started Top Kill already. Maybe we’ll know if it worked by tonight. *fingers crossed*

  30. Top Kill: Live New Conference Update on ABC:


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