Maybe the alternate photo caption should read something like "I can see the end of my presidency from here." Well, we all figured this would be a carefully choreographed photo op for the current occupant of the White House, but little did we know having their boot firmly on the neck of BP meant the folks at BP were obliged to send in some stooges for the visuals. I guess the goons from SEIU were off harassing some bank workers or getting an early start on the holiday weekend and weren't available. Or maybe Organizing for America didn't factor stuff like this into their budget. I saw a report earlier from Grand Isle and the place was a virtual ghost town. Seems they have to pay the folks to show up.
Perhaps you saw news footage of President Obama in Grand Isle, La., on Friday and thought things didn't look all that bad. Well, there may have been a reason for that: The town was evidently swarmed by an army of temp workers to spruce it up for the president and the national news crews following him.Thanks to Ace, Allahpundit and Instapundit for the links.
Jefferson Parish Councilman Chris Roberts, whose district encompasses Grand Isle, told Yahoo! News that BP bused in "hundreds" of temporary workers to clean up local beaches. And as soon as the president was en route back to Washington, the workers were clearing out of Grand Isle too, Roberts said.
"The level of cleanup and cooperation we've gotten from BP in the past is in no way consistent to the effort shown on the island today," Roberts said by telephone. "As soon as the president left, they were immediately put back on the buses and sent home."
Roberts says the overnight contingent of workers was there mainly to furnish a Potemkin-style backdrop for the event — while also making it appear that BP was firmly in command of spill cleanup efforts.
New Orleans NBC affiliate WDSU reports that the workers were paid $12 an hour and came mostly from neighboring Terrebonne and Lafourche parishes.
News of 11th-hour spruce-up brigade spread rapidly Friday afternoon and infuriated locals. One popular radio host, WWL's Spud McConnell, suggested that the Coast Guard and the White House may have been involved in setting up the "perfect photo op."
Special added bonus: The bused-in workers making things pristine for The One.
And yes, it gets better.