Skip to comments.Houstonians pour money and hearts into Bush-Clinton fund (Barbara Bush calls Toon her "Son")
Posted on 05/07/2005 8:06:09 PM PDT by ambrose
Houstonians pour money and hearts into Bush-Clinton tsunami relief fund
By TONY FREEMANTLE
Copyright 2005 Houston Chronicle
WHERE SOME OF THE MONEY'S GOING $5 million: Will be used to provide scholarships for as many as 75 students to attend Texas A&M University or the University of Arkansas for study in subjects that will aid ongoing reconstruction engineering, city planning and agriculture. $1 million: Will be used to build playgrounds in Sri Lanka. $500,000: Will be spent in Lampuuk, Sumatra, Clinton said, to rebuild a school, a health clinic, a women's center and a small market, and to rebuild the village's water system.
From schoolchildren to corporate giants, churches to sports franchises, Houstonians have contributed $10 million to a fund set up by former Presidents Bush and Clinton to help victims of December's devastating Indian Ocean tsunami.
Bush and Clinton, who were asked by President George W. Bush to lead a national fund-raising campaign in January, announced the local total at a ceremony Thursday at Westside Tennis Club. Among others, the event was attended by hundreds of schoolchildren who contributed.
"I want to thank all the people of Houston who generously donated to this fund," Clinton said. "I don't think any city in America can match the contributions that Houston has made to tsunami relief."
The Bush-Clinton Houston Tsunami Fund was an offshoot of the national campaign and was chaired by Houston businessman Jim McIngvale and his wife, Linda. Donations were received from more than 14,000 contributors and averaged $714.
Nationally, Bush said Americans have contributed more than $1 billion to tsunami relief and redevelopment efforts. The contributions to the Bush-Clinton fund do not include millions of dollars donated by Houstonians and others through other avenues.
Presidents toured region
The local fund's $10 million will be targeted at specific redevelopment projects in four countries Indonesia, Thailand, Sri Lanka and the Maldives that were particularly hard hit by the tsunami, and which were visited by the two former presidents on a tour of the region in February.
The tsunami, triggered by a massive earthquake off the western coast of the Indonesian island of Sumatra on Dec. 26, left at least 275,000 people dead or missing in at least 12 countries from Asia to East Africa. More than a million people were displaced by the giant waves, which in many places wiped out entire towns and villages.
The two former presidents visited one such village, Lampuuk, on the west coast of Sumatra, during their February trip. Before the waves, Lampuuk was home to about 6,500 people; only 700 survived. The only building left standing was the local mosque, though it suffered heavy damage.
The devastation in Lampuuk clearly moved both Clinton and Bush, who pledged to help the village recover.
In Thailand, Bush and Clinton visited Ban Nam Khem, a small fishing village that was virtually wiped out. Their fund will be used to buy or build nearly 200 fishing boats.
In the Maldives, a damaged island will be "adopted" with the help of Bush-Clinton funds and its water and sanitation systems will be repaired, as will its harbor and government offices.
Bush and Clinton, in part because they have worked so closely on fund-raising efforts, have forged a close friendship in recent months, prompting some humor from former first lady Barbara Bush when she introduced the former presidents.
"It's my great honor to introduce America's favorite new couple," she said. "Everyone is talking about the 'odd couple,' George and Bill or, as I now call him, Son."
In January, as the scale of the disaster began to sink in, McIngvale said the American people began responding in an unprecedented way.
"Soon the prayers of the American people were met with action," he said. "The reason you were invited to be here tonight is that you were part of more than 14,000 people who responded."
Bush added: "I want to thank each and every donor who opened their hearts to this unimaginable suffering. This has been one of the most rewarding efforts I have been a part of."
This bothers me.
Yes, I think the Bush's have a fondness for impeached, reprobate, criminal, adulterous, treasonous sociopaths.
(did I forget any other Clinton features? :-) )
Keep your friends close.
And your enemies closer.
They may have a fondness for old Bubba, but mark my words, he'll stab them in the back one day. They don't call him Slick Willie for nothin'.
Very clever. The Bush family love-bombs BJ, and in turn, he doesn't criticize the current administration.
Billy doesn't seem to be flapping his gums as much, ever since he was adopted by his new surrogate parents. Still.. "Son"?
I wouldn't give money to the Tsnunami relief, not after the way people protest in Indonesia with their anti-semetic and anti- american bigotry . Give money to people who hate us or want me dead, no way Jose.
... he'll stab them in the back one day....
Yes, just like he did virtually every person around him, including his so-called wife. He is a sick SOB, that should be in federal prison for treason, at the least.
BARF. What happened to "it's time for them to go" and "when I get the White House, I will give the sink a good scrubbing"?
Damn...Pappy Bush has gone Goldwater on us.
Wonder just how much do Bush and Clintoon pocket? There's a catch here that we'll never know.
(did I forget any other Clinton features? :-) )
But I'd be damned before I'd ever shake hands with that piece of shit. *
I was raised 'right', been to college(s), and look good in a tux,
but the kind of 'diplomacy' being exhibited by the Bush clan in this case is beyond me.
* (true sentiments redacted re secret service)
Speculation (educated) has it that was the only "war wound" that Willy ever received. Happened in a back country rent-by-the-hour sleazebag motel one night, when the lights went out. Willy ran into the wall at high pursuit speed..never did catch the bimbo.
The only thing Willy ever lost in battle, was a pair of underwear in a cheap hotel...a FINE AMERICAN!!!
Kinda bugs me as well. I don't care much for it.
Certainly more profane than anything Laura Bush said on her comedy tour.