Diary

Haiti vs Katrina coverage

Call me cynical, but is anyone else noticing the difference in TV coverage? I’m taking it as a given that the great majority of help and organization in Haiti is going to come from us. If they are going to depend on the UN for help they might as well commit suicide now and get it over with. There seem to be many of the same sorts of things taking place in these two events.

  • Natural disaster of monumental proportions.
  • Local governments inept (at best) or non-existent.
  • Problems getting food/water/medicine staged.
  • Problems getting those supplies to the people who need it.
  • Thousands of people in desperate need.
  • Some groups of old and/or disabled people literally dying as help is not received.
  • Anarchy – armed gangs of people terrorizing others.
  • Aid workers and medical people coming under armed assault.

I’m sure there are some other similarities I’m missing. In all these sorts of things, the coverage in Bush’s case was: “I don’t want to hear your puny excuses – YOU need to fix this.” In Obama’s case, the coverage is more like: “He gave a nice speech, taking a few minutes out from his many hours of secret health care meetings and his campaigning for Marsha Martha Coakley, and is doing everything he can.”

This double standard even applies in other areas. When Bush avoided visiting NOLA for fear of interfering with aid workers, it was proof that he didn’t care. When Obama says the same thing about Haiti, it is proof of how insightful and compassionate he is.

BTW I guess we know where Geraldo will be for a while and we know where Anderson Cooper will be for a long time.