NEW ORLEANS--I'm preparing to begin shooting a feature-length documentary on the subject of why, in August 2005, 80% of the city of New Orleans experienced catastrophic flooding. The city, of course, is in an ecstatic mood this week, and there seemingly isn't a conversation that doesn't begin and end with the Saints.
It's instructive that a community so recently wrecked by the confluence of nature and human malfeasance, and which is just at the moment beginning early voting for its next mayor, is so clearly placing its hope, faith and belief in a football team. What it says to me is that folks here have rarely seen the leadership class perform with the professionalism, discipline and determination that they see in their football players.
Of course, President Obama has been asked to weigh in on the portentous Colts v. Saints Super Bowl matchup. Maybe it's just that this sound bite appeared on the same day the president donned Republican garb and called for a federal (non-defense) spending freeze, but the sentiment the man expresses ("pretty sympathetic") about the near-destruction of New Orleans is starting to typify the pallidness and halfwayness of this Presidency. Maybe what he'll get next time is voters who are "pretty interested" in his re-election.