The Associated Press got their hands on a video conference held between the President and his FEMA team just before Katrina hit the Gulf Coast states.
Most astute media people have picked up on the significance of Bush's being told that the levees were in jeopardy of breaching--the contrast to his later claim that nobody anticipated that catastrophe marks a certifiable lie.
However, more notable than Bush's "lie" is the opportunity to witness the President's management style. Katrina was one of the most, if not the most, devastating natural disaster to ever strike this country. Katrina was also, as the video shows, one of the most anticipated natural disasters. At this key moment of crisis, as preparations were engaged, the President didn't ask a single question of his advisers nor issue a single unique insight or recommendation. This is the Clarence Thomas School of Management. Opening his mouth doesn't exactly inspire confidence, but Bush rarely spares the public that disappointment. Why should his advisers fare any differently? If ever there was lingering doubt about Bush's competence in basic management, the video footage provides historical evidence of a puppet Presidency. The clothes have no emperor.
Oddly enough, the hero of the video seems to be "heckuva job Brownie". While Bush sits and listens (and perhaps he wasn't even doing that), Michael Brown seems to display full comprehension of the impending disaster and, dare we say it, competence. We know that Michael Brown wasn't exactly qualified to run FEMA, that he was yet another crony appointment in a corrupt administration, but at least he seems to have tried to rise above his lack of experience and expertise. The same cannot be said of the President, who seems incapable of growing beyond knowing just enough to pretend to be in charge--and he isn't even very good at that.