The President of the United States would like for us to think all is going well in Puerto Rico. It isn’t. In significant ways, it has gotten much worse. On September 22nd, in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Maria, CNN News reported that only one-third of the population had power.
But yesterday a substation in the capitol city of San Juan failed, dropping the number of residents who had power from 12 percent to 7 percent. This failure affected hospitals and led to the following cry for help from the Mayor of San Juan Carmen Yulin Cruz:
Power collapses in San Juan hospital with 4 patients now being transferred out. Have requested support from FEMA. NOTHING! @DavidBegnaud
— Carmen Yulín Cruz (@CarmenYulinCruz) October 8, 2017
The Hospital had requested support from FEMA and no response. Oh sorry they are collecting data…
— Carmen Yulín Cruz (@CarmenYulinCruz) October 8, 2017
And what, might you ask, was FEMA’s response? As reported yesterday by Politico, the Director of FEMA Brock Long said:
“We filtered out the mayor a long time ago. We don’t have time for political noise.”
Since when has begging for help for hospital patients been considered “political noise”? Because the cry comes from a woman? Because she did not bend the knee and kiss the ring of Donald Trump. Imagine the outcry if FEMA a tragedy struck New York City and FEMA said they were filtering out the Mayor and only dealing with the Governor of the state.
FEMA also got caught and called out when they tried to delete data from their official website regarding the number of people in Puerto Rico who had access to power and to clean drinking water. They were shamed into at least posting the numbers for people who had clean water to drink. The hospital ship Comfort did not reach Puerto Rico until this past Tuesday. That’s because it sat in its berth in Norfolk, Virginia for over a week after the hurricane hit.
Trump’s own visit to the island turned into a public relations disaster. After comparing the devastation wrought by Hurricane Maria to Hurricane Katrina which he defined as a “real catastrophe” and then telling the participants at his tarmac reception “I hate to tell you Puerto Rico, but you’ve thrown our budget a little out of whack” – words he never spoke to the governors of Texas, Louisiana, or Florida – he then proceeded to visit a church where he gleefully lobbed rolls of paper towels to the audience. Only at the last minute was he convinced not to throw cans of chicken at them.
After Trump, or more likely members of his inner circle, recognized that he was receiving significant backlash from his tone-deaf trip to the island, and that a “clean up on Aisle Four” was needed, they produced the following nine-minute video that Trump uploaded on Twitter yesterday.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 8, 2017
You should watch it. You paid for it.
“Nobody could have done what I’ve done for #PuertoRico with so little appreciation. So much work!”
Whiney Donney is at it again, at our expense. And, once again, it is all about him. What “he” has done for Puerto Rico. No credit to the first responders who brought in much needed supplies. No credit to the military who have been working around the clock. No credit to the doctors and nurses who have taken their personal time to help in the recovery efforts. No credit to Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines for cancelling a cruise in order to bring in supplies and help evacuate people needing to get out. And definitely no credit to Senator Marco Rubio who was on the ground almost immediately and has worked tirelessly to help the citizens of Puerto Rico.
By all accounts, including those on the ground in the island, Trump himself has done pretty much damned little. But this could be unfair – he might have been flying that helicopter in the video. Then he complains that he has gotten “so little appreciation.” Well, duh, there hasn’t been much for the people to be appreciative of. “So much work!” You flew on Air Force One, visited a couple of groups, threw some paper towels, then told residents without food, water, or electricity to “Have a good time.”
Do you remember the video that George W. Bush put out about all he had done for the victims of Hurricane Katrina? Yeah, me neither.
The report that his approval ratings fell to its lowest level yet, 32 percent, in the recent AP poll might have something to do with this damage-control piece of propaganda. Because that’s exactly what it is. Propaganda. Fortunately the mainstream media including The Washington Post and NBC (aka FAKE NEWS) are continuing to keep the American people informed on what is really happening. And according to the recent poll, more people now believe them than Donald Trump.
At least Elon Musk finally got permission to work on restoring cell phone service to the island. This is crucial as many people cannot be contacted other than by cell phone, and thousands of residents in the United States have been unable to reach loved ones.
And the creator and star of the Broadway blockbuster “Hamilton” Lin-Manual Miranda was able to garner almost immediately an A-list of performers to produce “Almost Like Praying” a song whose proceeds will all go to disaster relief through Hispanicfederation.org. Some are calling it the “We Are The World” song for 2017.
Everyone on the track pic.twitter.com/oCKcWUax5R
— Lin-Unwell Mirandead (@Lin_Manuel) October 6, 2017
According to some news sources, he raised over $3 million dollars BEFORE the song was released. It can be viewed on YouTube or you can purchase it for only $1.29 on ITunes.