Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Tone Deaf Bush

Bush has fallen into some very hot, if not boiling, political water with his proposed approval of the purchase by Dubai Ports World, a United Arab Emirates owned firm, of the London based Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company, which runs six major United States ports. Bush even threatens a veto if Congress takes any action preventing the sale. Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-South Carolina) calls the move foolish and said the Bush Administration was "unbelievably tone deaf politically." To quote the great fictional moral philosopher Forrest Gump, "Stupid is what stupid does."

The ports involved are very important and vital to our economy. They include some of our busiest: New York, New Jersey, Baltimore, New Orleans, Miami and Philadelphia.

The bipartisan angst felt about this issue brings about a good question: Why should we worry? Well, the company that will run the ports can select the personnel of their choice and have oversight of the cargo brought into the country. Moreover, the firm will have complete knowledge of the security plans along the eastern seaboard--an inviting opportunity for any terrorist organization with proactive plans that have hatred towards the U.S.

Rep. Edward Markey, (D-Mass.) said:
Almost none of the cargo that enters our ports is ever inspected. While the federal government is ultimately responsible for security at ports, much of the day-to-day security responsibilities, such as hiring security guards and ensuring adequate access controls and fencing are in place, are delegated to the companies that operate at the port.
Yet, the Republican in Congress will not go quietly into the night on this issue. They’re ticked off and are willing to challenge the Bush Administration on this strange decision. In fact, House Speaker Hastert called for an "immediate moratorium" to be placed on the deal. Oh, oh, those sound like fighting words.

We have enough problems in combating terrorism domestically to add another headache to worry about. As such, this issue is a winner for Democrats, and we can rightly make the case that we’re tougher on security issues than the Bush Administration. Dems can rightly argue that Bush allowed "bombs in a box" to be potentially brought into the country by outsourcing the management of ports.

We have a winner folks.

Update: Kevin Drum over at the Washington Monthly blog has a diferent take. See here.


Anonymous Steve said...

This is another example of hyperbole overcoming objectivity. In relation to national security the sale of these ports is irrelevant and changes nothing...NOTHING...other than the possibility that union longshoremen might be displaced.

The democrats got their marching orders from the unions to oppose the sale, and the supercritical steam gushing from their mouths panicked some otherwise rational repulicans into doing the same.

The unions could give a rat's ass about security, they want the authority to run and rule the roost like they always have at these docks so they can hold the country hostage whenever they want more money.

10:56 AM  
Blogger Lou Delgado said...

Geez, the Republicans in Congress have been much tougher than my tepid words.

And, your comment, "unions could give a rat's ass about security" is so freaking super idiotic it does not even desesrve a responce. And you talk about hyperbole. Ha, what a clown.

1:19 PM  

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