Friday, October 26, 2007

Big Dan's Big Blog Exclusive: Bush's Uneditted California Fires Speech; Bush Says Words At Fire

THE PRESIDENT: Governor, thank you very much. First thing I want to let the people know out here in Southern California is that Southern California is a state. It’s a good state. We’re in Southern California. You have a football team. It’s called the Southern California Trojans. You wouldn’t have a football team, if you weren’t a state. I think they’re named after the condiments. It's very important for those who are wondering about their future to know there's a lot of good citizens all across America. America is a great big land! Americans pray. Prayin’ is good. Southern California prays a lot.

I appreciate the leadership of Governor Schwarzenegger. He’s a governor. He governs. I said earlier when we were at the neighborhood, there's no hill he's not willing to charge, no problem he's willing to solve. And we've got a problem out here, and I appreciate his leadership. I appreciate that he’s a leader and I appreciate there’s no problem he can solve. Problems are bad. We don’t like problems. Fires are bad. Fires are like problems, and problems are bad. Fires and problems are bad.

I do want to thank Senator Feinstein for joining us. I want to thank the local mayors, statehouse folks, the congresspeople for being with us, as well. There’s people in congress. I like when people are with us. People being with us is good. Good people being with us is real good.

Really, it's important for me to come out here and see firsthand the situation. I’m seeing it. That’s why I’m here. And there's no question a lot of people are suffering. I’m seeing the suffering. And there's no question there's been terrible losses. I’m seeing the losses. I also am out here to make sure these firefighters behind me and the first responders know how much I appreciate and how much the country appreciates their courage and bravery. (Applause.)

Firefighters are on the scene and on the front lines. Firefighters on the scene and on the front lines are good. Firemen have red fire engines. The red fire engines go fast. The red fire trucks have bells on them. I love bells. The bells are good. The police have helped maintain order. The police are order maintainers. They maintain order. Emergency medical teams have treated the sick. They always do that. Emergency medical teams are always treating the sick. They’re sick treaters. That’s good when emergency medical teams treat the sick. They’re good at that. That’s good. And our National Guard personnel is providing very important assistance. Important assistance is good. It’s real good when the National Guard personnel is providing important assistance. It turns out when the President shows up, so does a lot of the other brass. I’m the president. I'm proud to be here with General Tuck, who runs the entire National Guard bureau. (Applause.)

General Tuck is a general. He looks like an army guy. He has a uniform. The uniform has stars. I like stars. Stars are shiny. He runs the entire National Guard bureau. That’s good. He looks official. You need to look official when you run an entire bureau. He’s good because he wears a uniform and runs things...and has stars.

All of us associated with the federal government, Governor, are here to make sure that the resources at our disposal are deployed to help you. We’re deployers. That’s why we’re here. That’s why I’m here. I’m deployin’. We're all deployin'. And that's why there's all kinds of people from all different departments at the federal level, to assess the needs, to listen to the concerns, and to respond. And that's exactly what we've been doing, and that's exactly what we'll continue to do. We’re going to continue to see, deploy, respond, and concern. We’re concerners, too. We’ll continue to be all kinds of people from all different departments, doing all kinds of things like concerning, listening to you and responding to you. We're bein' people from departments.

As the Governor mentioned, I did issue an emergency declaration which allows federal agencies across the government to help state and local authorities. The Governor said those words. The words said something I did. He said I did it. Those were the words. The words are sayin' FEMA can provide vital supplies as well as to pay emergency grants to help pay for the cost of firefighting, evacuation shelters, and traffic control. FEMA provides vital things. They help a lot. FEMA helps a lot. FEMA is a vitaler. A vitaler supplier. They supply vital things. I see them supplying vital things.

Our Department of Agriculture and Interior have provided elite firefighters and equipment. As I mentioned, the Department of Defense is in this to help you through NORTHCOM. I don’t know what NORTHCOM is. It sounds official. A lot of guys in uniforms are good at running things there. I think they’re the military. The military has got assets that we can help you with. Assets are good. The guys in uniforms are gonna help you with their assets. General, thanks for coming. We've got a four-star general with us today; he runs NORTHCOM and the reason he's here, Governor, is to listen to you, find out what assets we can continue to deploy to help you. The General has a uniform with stars on it. He’s standing right next to me. He's the guy in the uniform. I like stars.

As the Governor mentioned, yesterday I signed a second declaration to help California's recovery and rebuilding efforts. The major disaster declaration authorizes the release of federal funds for debris removal and long-term assistance to individuals and business owners. The business owners own businesses. That's why we're callin' them business owners. The individuals don't have businesses. They're individuals. People affected by the fires can now apply for assistance for temporary housing and home repair and low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses. Just like Katrina. You'll be applyin'. Applyin' for things. Fillin' out forms...makin' phone calls. Forms and phone calls help the applyin'. You heard the words I said about Katrina when that happened. Those words were like these words. In fact, they're the same words. They're good words. Remember those words? I hope you don’t. If you do, they were like these words. I say words a lot. I say words a lot at disasters.

Now people here in this part of the world are wondering, is there a number they can call to get help? This part of the world is Southern California. Did you know that? Did you know that you live in this part of the world? Here's the number: 1-800-EAT-SHIT. You want to find out whether or not you qualify for help, federal help, just call 1-800-EAT-HELP or go to the website It’s on the internets. The internets are a bunch of tubes. Did you know that? The tubes will help you. The tubes are good. They’re good tubes. And there's a third way that you can find out whether you get help, and that is through a mobile disaster. A mobile disaster recovery center that FEMA's deployed around this state. And Arnold Schwarzenegger's right. These fires are going to go out. I think he's right. Fires go out. The fires will go out because of the bravery of the people behind us. Bravery makes fires go out. People are brave and fires go out. But there's still going to be needs and concerns. Concerns that the fires aren't gonna go out. Did you know the fires are gonna go out? I’ll bet you didn’t know the fires are gonna go out. Even if you knew the fires were gonna go out, I’ll bet you didn’t know they were gonna go out because of bravery and concern.

And the final reason I've come is to let you know we're not going to forget you in Washington, D.C., I’m telling you that we’re thinking about you. That’s why I’m here: to tell you that we’re thinking about you. I’m here saying words. And thinkin'. Thinkin' about you. It’s good for me to tell you that we’re thinking about you in Washington, D.C. We want the people to know that there's a better day ahead. Did you know there’s a better day ahead? The better day may not be tomorrow but there will be a better day. There’s a day tomorrow. There always is. Tomorrow, today will be yesterday. Did you know that? That’s pretty tricky! We think that, when we’re thinking about you in Washington D.C.; that today, your life may look dismal but tomorrow, life is going to be better; and to the extent that the federal government can help you, we want to do so. That extent isn’t a good extent. But we’re going to help you to that extent. And we’re going to think about you…from Washington, D.C...tomorrow...and that bad extent I was tellin' you about.

I do want to thank all the volunteers who have stepped forth to help a neighbor in need. Helping neighbors is good. Would you be my neighbor? I knew you would! It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood, a beautiful day in the neighbor…could you be mine? Would you be mine? There's an impressive number of people that have heard the call that one of their neighbors needs help. They heard their neighbors calling for help...just like we're thinkin' about you in Washington D.C...and they heard it. For all of those who are volunteering their time to help somebody get their feet back on the ground, the hot ground, I thank you from the bottom of our nation's heart. I like it when neighbors who hear other neighbors calling for help, step forward and help them. I like that. That’s good. Neighbors are good. Neighbors are those people living near you, but they’re not you.

May God bless those who suffer and not help them before they suffer, not to suffer; may God bless those who are helping the people who are hurting, and not help them not hurt before they are hurting; and may God continue to bless our country as I hurt it, in the name of my Father, his Son, and the terrists. Amen. Thank you. (Applause.)
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