Friday, September 02, 2005

Morning copy 9.2.2005 (New Orleans)

From the USA Today/AP story:

"They don't have a clue what's going on down there," Mayor Ray Nagin told WWL-AM Thursday night.

"Excuse my French — everybody in America — but I am pissed."


"This is a national disgrace," said New Orleans' emergency operations chief Terry Ebbert. "We can send massive amounts of aid to tsunami victims, but we can't bail out the city of New Orleans."


"We have individuals who are getting raped, we have individuals who are getting beaten," Compass said. "Tourists are walking in that direction and they are getting preyed upon."

From the Survival of New Orleans Blog:

Three days ago, police and national guard troops told citizens to head toward the Crescent City Connection Bridge to await transportation out of the area. The citizens trekked over to the Convention Center and waited for the buses which they were told would take them to Houston or Alabama or somewhere else, out of this area.

It's been 3 days, and the buses have yet to appear.

This morning on CNN FEMA chief Mike Brown said he found out about the convention center from the MSM Thursday morning. He was interviewed by Soledad O'Brien, who was at times shocked my the material disconnect Brown has from reality...

" go into a national catastrophe with the FEMA you have." writes the Cunning Realist:

Holding the administration and the government to account for this is not opportunistic political rhetoric. What has happened should deeply concern us all. How is it that four full years after 9/11---a period of time during which our overarching national priority should have been to upgrade and prepare for a domestic disaster on this scale---we are utterly hapless and helpless when one occurs? If you live in San Francisco or for that matter any city, are you confident that your tax dollars have bought you the minimum level of assistance you would expect if this happened to you? And, distressingly, what message does this send to terrorists who are no doubt watching, nodding to themselves, and silently taking notes?

"A total breakdown of organized society" in the New York Times editorial.

Paul Krugman in the NY Times:

First question: Why have aid and security taken so long to arrive? Katrina hit five days ago - and it was already clear by last Friday that Katrina could do immense damage along the Gulf Coast. Yet the response you'd expect from an advanced country never happened. Thousands of Americans are dead or dying, not because they refused to evacuate, but because they were too poor or too sick to get out without help - and help wasn't provided. Many have yet to receive any help at all.

At some point, when the political stink peaks, when Bush is staring the end of his presidency square in the eye, they will try and shift this to a "we gave an evacuation order" and so therefore we are no longer morally obliged to save lives. If you buy that, you are buying political spin over heaps of needless dead. It is coming.

And it is OK to play politics at times like this. The military is under civilian, administration control. They are stretched thin fighting Bush's war over trumped up evidence. FEMA is a federal agency as well. Bush, the most political of animals, only wants people to not play politics because he'll lose this round bad.


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