I had wondered whether anyone would connect my essay What really worries me about the War on Terror, written several weeks before Hurricane Katrina's devastating blow, with that disaster. Particularly re-read the last several paragraphs. Reflect on what the removal of the veneer of law and order revealed about the citizenry. Think about the grandstanding and blameshifting that have followed these events.
I am not a prophet, nor the son of a prophet, but I'll say this: recent news has not served to make me less worried.
The one disaster, engineered and carried out by men, did not serve to wake us up, and I expressed concern about what it would take. Now a "natural" disaster has hit us, and hit us hard. What is the general reaction? To blame men for not preventing it, to blame the government for not being big enough to deal with it, to blame President Bush for not exercising Godlike powers. (Read this spluttering, hate-soaked screed from the NYT's Frank Rich as an example.) All still man-centered and strictly horizontal thinking -- while the removal of the restraint of law almost instantly shows what lurks just under the surface in our society.
But there's more.
President Bush and the GOP leadership did not succeed in slapping down Dem obstructionism in the matter of appointing justices. The hearings on Roberts' appointment to the Supreme Court have been delayed until September, and even so one of the Dems' Chief Obstructionists, Ted Kennedy -- a man who knows his water-related disasters -- predictably wants to delay them further. Now Chief Justice Rehnquist has died, presenting President Bush and the GOP (and America) with a real opportunity to shift the court towards sanity, or further away from it.
And amid all this, irrational attacks on the President's failure to be God are going unrefuted in the Mainstream Media arm of the Democratic party and (as usual) unanswered by the President himself and the GOP. They still seem to think that if they're just nice and genteel, everyone will sort things out for himself. Because everybody's basically good at heart.
Given that this latest disaster shows no sign of generally waking anyone up, but rather of further bringing out the depth of our spiritual and (thus) rational declension, it is easy to project a few more events bringing us to dire straits indeed.
All this to say that we should pray. But, as I've said, I think we dare not pray for God simply to "bless" America. We must pray that He chasten us, humble us, and bring us to repentance -- which would involve disabusing the President and others like him of their muzzy and anti-Biblical notions of the fundamental goodness of all men.
Now that would be a blessing.
UPDATE: Ben Stein offers some good, contextualizing thoughts about the Bash-Bush-apalooza that the MSM is trying to perpetuate. By contrast, the always-wrong Paul Krugman must be slipping, though; he actually takes three paragraphs before first explicitly blaming President Bush for the death and destruction.
UPDATE II: FReeper NewJerseyJoe produces an on-target satire of the MSM's subtext in How the libs wanted Bush to act: A Katrina Fairy Tale.
UPDATE III: Powerline's Rocket-man John Hinderaker dissassembles foam-flecked Paul Krugman piece by piece. It isn't a pretty sight, and not much is left when the dust clears.