Off Topic Messages

Mon Sep 12, 2005 2:31 am

Yes! :lol: Along with if every car had a spike sticking out of the steering wheel we'd all drive more carefully. :lol:

Mon Sep 12, 2005 6:18 am

The foreign (Germany, France, India, etc.)and domestic corporate support (Walmart, etc.) offered to Katrina victims was
genuine, if symbolic of our inablilty to be organized and to recognize
when we had blown it. Watching it on TV, it was clear our "plan"
was not working. It was something to make the "Keystone Cops" proud.

As surely one of the richest (if not richest) countries
on the planet, the storm also blew the lid off the some of the poverty and
class issues we usually keep well-hidden. A lot of folks are getting
a "new deal" of sorts, which has made others with some means grumble,
such as that government-issued credit card with $2000 on it, or whatever it was. It's really quite something how much Americans have stepped
up to the plate, however, in terms of giving to charity and even
taking folks in.

Sunday's Washington Post had an interesting omsbudsmen column
about a controversy about the paper's uncritical use of a "senior Bush
aide" who claimed (erroneously) that Louisiana Governor Blanco did not declare a state of emergency, hence allegedly hamstringing the President's ability to take action.

In fact, this was contradicted by the fact that
the Governor, as it turns out, did do so before the storm (August 26th, in fact) and so the Bush
camp was caught attempted to change the facts of the story (no surprise)
and direct blame elsewhere. The author criticized the paper
for (again, as usual for the lap-dog press) uncritically using such an unnamed "source" - and then not doing a follow-up article on the controversy itself.

Blanco and Bush just met again, so I assume the stance is "moving forward," which is good.

As an aside on guns, the notion that we have to arm everyone to the teeth
so as to squelch other would-be gun-toters (that is, other ones) is
pretty sad. The conflict between responsible gun-owners in the rural
and suburban "fly-over" country also seems at odds with that of urbanites
in cities, who generally tend to favor gun-control for a varieity of reasons. I don't know how we ever bridge that gap.

If more folks sincerely believed in gun registration, waiting-periods (etc) as Pete does, it would be easy to take the 2nd-Amendment
folks seriously. It's a credit to gun-owners who don't take the NRA
(National Rifle Association) as gospel on everything. Here's one
issue where a happy medium is possible. Republican James Brady
(crippled during the attempted '81 Reagan assassination) spearheaded
one such sane approach to gun control that (I think) respected basic
gun owner rights. The Democrats, however, will continue to lose
if they continue to ridicule and mock responsible sportsmen and fishermen-types who often are gun-owners - or rather, covet
the small base of such elitist voters who in turn champion various
small causes of no real electoral value, that is, broad popular support.

Tue Sep 13, 2005 12:30 am

You were correct Greg, THE richest.

I do agree though, there was bad coordination, and guess what, it is again at the LOCAL level. You can put in all the supplies but without leadership there is nothing that can be changed.

As far as the "mistake" I wouldn't mind seeing the whole article, but as it stands who cares. Whether she declared it or not doesn't matter. What does matter is that she refused Bush's request to take over the evacuation, and in essences she did SQUAT for preparation. That is not the presidents fault. So many have forgotten that his role is to act as a delagator. I remember someone asking if New Orleans would be rebuilt, and rightly so Bush said "that isn't up to me...but up to the experts".

The fault lies first and foremost on the shouldiers of the governer, but I do believe there is alot of guilt to go around.

Though the constant blaming of Bush is not only wrong, but totally naive. My problem is not with the catastrophe..because that is almost unavoidable, but the way the aftermath was handled. Nagin and Blanco acted like complete idiots that had no clue what their job was.

Here are some quotes that you should read Greg,

WHO WAS IN CHARGE OF THE BUSES AND WHAT HAPPENED TO THE EFFORT?
FACT: Available Buses Were Not Used To Evacuate Before The Hurricane: "Some 200 New Orleans school buses sit underwater in a parking lot, unused. That's enough to have evacuated at least 13,000 people. Why weren't those buses sent street by street to pick up people before the storm? A draft emergency plan, prepared by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and obtained by NBC News, calls for "400 buses to ... evacuate victims." Yet those 200 buses were left in Katrina's path." (Lisa Myers, "What Went Wrong In Katrina's Wake?" MSNBC, 9/6/2005)

"New Orleans' own comprehensive emergency plan raises the specter of 'having large numbers of people ...stranded' and promises 'the city ... will utilize all available resources to quickly and safely evacuate threatened areas.'" (Dan Harris, "Who's to Blame for Delayed Response to Katrina?" ABC News, 9/6/2005)

"The city's evacuation plan states: 'The city of New Orleans will utilize all available resources to quickly and safely evacuate threatened areas.' But even though the city has enough school and transit buses to evacuate 12,000 citizens per fleet run, the mayor did not use them. To compound the problem, the buses were not moved to high ground and were flooded. (Bob Williams, Op-Ed, "Blame Amid The Tragedy," The Wall Street Journal, 9/6/05)

FACT: Additional Personnel Was Not Recruited To Move The Disabled: "The plan also states that 'special arrangements will be made to evacuate persons unable to transport themselves or who require specific lifesaving assistance. Additional personnel will be recruited to assist in evacuation procedures as needed.' This was not done." (Bob Williams, Op-Ed, "Blame Amid The Tragedy," The Wall Street Journal, 9/6/05)

FACT: Lessons From Past Failures Were Not Addressed Or Were Repeated: "A year ago, as Hurricane Ivan approached, New Orleans ordered an evacuation but did not use city or school buses to help people evacuate. As a result many of the poorest citizens were unable to evacuate." (Bob Williams, Op-Ed, "Blame Amid The Tragedy," The Wall Street Journal, 9/6/05)

"Fortunately, the hurricane changed course and did not hit New Orleans, but both Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin acknowledged the need for a better evacuation plan. again, they did not take corrective actions." (Bob Williams, Op-Ed, "Blame Amid The Tragedy," The Wall Street Journal, 9/6/05)

WHOSE IDEA WAS IT TO USE THE SUPERDOME?
FACT: Mayor Nagin Ordered The Superdome To Be Used As Shelter: "Nagin ordered a mandatory evacuation for the city's 485,000 residents and opened the Superdome as a shelter of last resort, bluntly warning those who stayed that they would be at the mercy of Katrina's high winds, 28-foot storm surge and 15 inches of rain that threatened to overwhelm the city's protective levees." (Brett Martel, "New Orleans Flees, Braces, Prays As Monstrous Hurricane Katrina Bears Down," The Associated Press, 8/29/05)

"Instead of evacuating the people, the Mayor ordered the refugees to the superdome and convention center without adequate security and no provisions for food, water and sanitary conditions." (Bob Williams, Op-Ed, "Blame Amid The Tragedy," The Wall Street Journal, 9/6/05)

"Plenty of missteps at the local level contributed to last week's disaster too, from a failure to take basic steps to protect the telecom infrastructure to inadequate food and water at the superdome. New Orleans may be able to stage events such as Mardi Gras and Jazzfest and provide parking, crowd control and adequate toilets for millions of visitors, but its hurricane plan was more rudimentary." (Robert Block, Amy Schatz, Gary Fields and Christopher Cooper, "Power Failure" The Wall Street Journal, 9/6/05)

“Get people to higher ground and have the feds and the state airlift supplies to them - that was the plan, man,' Mayor Ray Nagin said in an interview ..." (Robert Block, Amy Schatz, Gary Fields and Christopher Cooper, "Power Failure" The Wall Street Journal, 9/6/05)

FACT: Lessons From Past Failures Were Not Addressed Or Were Repeated: "In 1998, during a threat by Hurricane George, 14,000 people were sent to the superdome and theft and vandalism were rampant due to inadequate security. Again, these problems were not corrected." (Bob Williams, Op-Ed, "Blame Amid The Tragedy," The Wall Street Journal, 9/6/05)