Washington Post reporter Juliet Eilperin filed a Monday story from the New Orleans Jazzfest this weekend. Late in the story, she noted rock star Bruce Springsteen "delivered a scathing assessment of President Bush's response to Hurricane Katrina." Having surveyed the city on Saturday, he said "The criminal ineptitude makes you furious. This is what happens when political cronyism guts the very agencies that are supposed to serve American citizens in times of trial and hardship." The federal government is shoveling billions and billions to New Orleans and liberals are still saying the agencies are "gutted."
Eilperin wrote that Springsteen played a two-hour set Sunday night that included a rewritten version of the folk song "How Can a Poor Man Stand Such Times and Live?" with new Katrina-response lyrics:
There's bodies floatin' on Canal and the levees gone to hell
Martha get me my 16 gauge and some shotgun shells
Them's who got got out of town
And them who win't got left to drown
Tell me, how can a poor man stand such times and live?
The San Francisco Chronicle had a slightly different Springsteen quote from the "city care forgot," but the "criminal ineptitude" talking point was still front and center: "The criminal ineptitude makes you furious. This is what happens when you play political games with people's lives." AP added that he dedicated his rewritten "bodies floatin" song to "President Bystander."