Sunday, September 04, 2005

Still More Incompetence

(via the White House)

Quote of the day:

"No hint of intelligent design in any of this. This was just survival of the richest." Bob Sheiffer

An impassioned indictment of the Bush administration and FEMA from the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

    ...Despite the city's multiple points of entry, our nation'’s bureaucrats spent days after last week'’s hurricane wringing their hands, lamenting the fact that they could neither rescue the city's stranded victims nor bring them food, water and medical supplies.

    Meanwhile there were journalists, including some who work for The Times-Picayune, going in and out of the city via the Crescent City Connection. On Thursday morning, that crew saw a caravan of Wal-Mart tractor trailers headed into town to bring food, water and supplies to a dying city...

    Yet, the people trained to protect our nation, the people whose job it is to quickly bring in aid were absent. Those who should have been deploying troops were singing a sad song about how our city was impossible to reach.

    Every official at the Federal Emergency Management Agency should be fired, Director Michael Brown especially.

    In a nationally televised interview Thursday night, he said his agency hadn'’t known until that day that thousands of storm victims were stranded at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. He gave another nationally televised interview the next morning and said, "We'’ve provided food to the people at the Convention Center so that they'’ve gotten at least one, if not two meals, every single day."

    Lies don'’t get more bald-faced than that, Mr. President.

    Yet, when you met with Mr. Brown Friday morning, you told him, "You'’re doing a heck of a job.

    That's unbelievable....


And the Mayor of New Orleans implores the feds: "Get off your asses." Later he is pressured to recant.

The incompetent Homeland Security Chief Michael Chertoff squirms as he tries to weasel out of any accountability. Tim Russert opens by asking him if he plans to resign and the criticisms just keep getting more and more blunt. See Immediate Accountablity parts 1 and 2. The second one is the best.

And the local Jefferson Parish President Aaron Broussard details some of the incredible fuck up, calls for heads in DC to roll and breaks down recounting the consequences of the failure to respond.

And in a commentary Bob Sheiffer sums things up:
    As the floodwaters rose, local officials in New Orleans ordered the city evacuated. They might as well have told their citizens to fly to the moon. How do you evacuate when you don't have a car? No hint of intelligent design in any of this. This was just survival of the richest."
The video is at Crooks and Liars
-------
The President Responds:

Operation Clusterfuck

    You know, yesterday, as I gazed down from Air Force One at Katrina's destruction, many thoughts flitted through my noggin. First of which was "Hey, them poor folk up to their hips in poo water – they vote for me?" The second thought was, of course, how happy I was to be on a photo shoot thousands of feet up in the air, safely away from The Big Queasy. Stinky smells make me gag like Jenna after six or seven pounders of Smirnoff Ice.

    Apparently, prayer can't hold back the waters of the Mississippi...

    Now I don't believe in Darwinism or evolution, as you well know. But as I read the intel neatly typed up for me about this itty-bitty basement flooding in swampy crawdad country, it seems that Darwin was right about one thing – only the strong survive. Or if not the strong per se, at least the rich. Because look, this disaster ain't really no different from a business going belly up: those at the top of the ladder keep their feet dry, while everyone else can fuck off...

    In closing, I'd like to remind everyone here that I am busy fighting our World War II in Iraq. So though I care about this little rainstorm, I want you to know that I am like FDR – only I can jog.

    In other words folks, "the only thing to fear is freaking out."

And Pharyngula has a good roundup of the very helpful religious response to this act of god.

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