Saturday, July 15, 2006

Church leaders take a hike

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (AP) -- Nearly all the religious leaders serving on a committee created by the Bush-Clinton Katrina Fund to disburse money to churches destroyed by Hurricane Katrina have quit their posts, claiming their advice was ignored...

"I've learned in life that if people say they want your advice and then they change it, ignore it, or undermine it, then they really don't want it," said Gray, also a former congressman...

Numerous disagreements ensued, but Jakes and Gray said the last straw was the fund's decision to cut checks to 38 houses of worship, each for $35,000, without first conducting an audit to ensure the church exists.

Imam Abdelhafiz Bensrieti, another committee member who resigned, said the Washington staff wanted the religious leaders to "rubber stamp" their decisions. "They had their agenda and that's unacceptable," he said.

Good. These clowns wanted to get a bunch of clergymen on hand for PR reasons, to pretend that they had the "support of the religious community" to do whatever they wanted to do, and the clergymen decided that they weren't going to be so used. This is the sort of stuff done by the White House all the time: they do what they want, and make sure that someone else can be blamed for any mess. The reverend's decided that they weren't going to play that game, and weren't going to be patsies. Good for them.

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