Though he'll freely concede the healthcare.gov rollout has been "a low state" in Barack Obama's presidency, Jon Stewart is flabbergasted by callously overeager recent comparisons. It's "hard to overstate" how disastrous it's been, Stewart said on last night's Daily Show. "Hard to overstate—but not impossible."
Enter: the media's dubious parallel between Obama's website glitches and Hurricane Katrina.
"Yes, I believe we've all seen the damning photos of the presidential flyover surveying the human suffering of the healthcare.gov website from a safe distance," Stewart snarked. Then he adopted a serious tone: "Comparing the government abdication of responsibility during Hurricane Katrina—the deaths of hundreds of people, the displacement of hundreds of thousands of people—to a f--ing website is offensive!"'
Indeed, it's offensive to Bush-era government officials partly responsible for Hurricane Katrina—like former White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card, who recently claimed "jurisdictional challenges" in 2005 because Bush didn't have the cooperation of then-Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco. Stewart then turned to Fox News anchor Chris Wallace's quibble with the comparison: "Katrina was a terrible event . . . but it began and it ended within a week," Wallace insisted. "This could affect people's lives for years to come!"
"Are you out of your f—" Stewart began, then paused, full of venom. "Spike Lee's documentary about Katrina lasted longer than a week!"
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.