San Diego, CA (Rotters) – Making an early, clandestine departure from Washington, DC aboard Air Force One late this afternoon, President Bush this evening offered a live fireside chat from San Diego, California. He offered sympathy and support to Southern Californians during the ongoing wildfire disaster, and pledged “whatever it takes” to rebuild a better and brighter Southern California. He then toasted a marshmallow as a symbolic gesture, encouraging all Californians to “not lose sight of the simpler things in life, and return to normal as soon as possible.”
“No one could have predicted that such a dry tinderbox could have been vaporized so rapidly in a firestorm fueled by the caprices of the Santa Ana winds,” stated Bush.
“This administration has learned the bitter lessons of Katrina,” said Bush. “This time around FEMA has done a heck of a job mobilizing bottled water and such. Sad to say, again, largely Democratic state and local officials were slow to ask for assistance… particularly when it came to mobilizing volunteers to actually open the bottles and pour them onto hotspots and firebreaks.”
The administration has been under criticism over the past week due to the fact that a large contingent of California’s National Guard and equipment was unavailable and occupied overseas with the war in Iraq and Afghanistan.
“The 3000 or so California National Guard who have been available for fire duty, have performed admirably,” praised Bush. “I will be authorizing, via presidential decree, their immediate rotation out of harm’s way as a reward for their service. They will be immediately eligible for significant bonuses prior to their deployment to theaters of operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.”
“The perpetrators of this disaster will be caught and punished,” vowed Bush. “Let this serve as a grim warning to those who would sow disbelief as to the real danger of Al Qaeda in America. You’ve kept us from fighting them over there, and now they’re here.”