>The worst part of the devastating effects of the Bush administration on this nation may just be how much more cynical many people like me have become. It's not that I wasn't cynical to begin with, but it's gotten to the point where even a natural disaster makes me roll my eyes and heave sighs. I read about how efficient FEMA has been in providing aid to evacuees in San Diego County - which is great; no one should have to suffer like the people in New Orleans did - and instead of thinking how glad I am that FEMA got its shit together, I sigh because I am sure that FEMA got its shit together because San Diego County is 66% white and about 80% Republican. Oh, and nearly a quarter of people who live there have household incomes of more than $100,000 per year.

Again, this is not to say that upper middle class white Republicans should not be helped in disasters, although I actually do sort of think that people who voted for Bush should be forced to live in the same horrific conditions that the administration wrought on New Orleans residents, 67% of whom are black and 54% of whom have household incomes of less than $30,000 per year. (I don't know what percent are Democrats, but I think it's safe enough to assume that it is a number proportional to the percent of Republicans in San Diego County.) Years ago, I would have just hoped that everyone who lived through a tragedy would get the help they need and I would be proud that our government was serving them. These days, I just wonder if the fires where in Compton or South Central if FEMA would have managed to get 25,000 cots delivered to the local stadium safe haven on time. I suspect not.

Some day, I may be able to get over the polarized, punitive political environment that Republicans have worked so hard to craft since their "revolution" in the 1990s. Until then, I will be suspicious when good things happen to wealthy white Republican areas, and worse, a small part of me will wish that they didn't get help in times of need since they are only too happy to deny the same courtesy to others. (Is it wrong for me to hope that the random fires only consume the homes of Republicans? They are most likely to get the best recovery assistance, right?) Very sad comment on the current state of affairs in our nation.