Respites

the bizarro president

At his last formal news conference, Bush at one point said: “Don’t tell me the federal response was slow when there was 30,000 people pulled off roofs” not long after the hurricane passed over the Gulf Coast.

I guess he still believes Brownie did a heckuva job.

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25 Comments on the bizarro president

  1. I don’t know about Brownie, but Nagin and Blanco did completely shitty jobs. BTW, they are the people responsible for taking care of the people and activating the National Guard, not the Fed and FEMA.

    Ever wonder why we didn’t have to rescue midwesterners from their rooftops duirng the Mississippi River floods?

    Ever wonder why five hurricanes went through Florida in one year and they barely even needed FEMA?

    Couldn’t have anything to do with the people who lived in New Orleans, could it?

    Muggings in Midtown, murder in Grant Park…. sooner or later we will all figure out that the government cannot protect you.

  2. For once, I agree (partially) with DaleC. The Katrina “response” was a rather disgusting episode of our political shadow war.

  3. It goes without saying that Nagin and Blanco were woefully unprepared. And that was clear from the beginning.

    Here’s the thing about being the president: You’re the person in charge. One call and you can mobilize an immediate response. Of course, he didn’t have competent people leading the agencies who would carry out his orders. He hung around in Texas and did a fly over but didn’t get on the ground and see for himself.

    At the point, the American people concluded, correctly, that the Bush Administration was inept.

    As for your point about muggings and murder intown, the government can put more cops on the streets. They can’t guarantee your safety, but would we better off with a bunch of armed vigilantes? Sounds like a Wayne LaPierre talking point to me.

  4. They all f’ed it up. But most of us don’t live in N.O. or LA, so whose response do we worry about if something happens in our backyard?

  5. IC Atlanta // January 12, 2009 at pm //

    If the govt can’t do what they are supposed to do correctly why do some citizens want to turn over their health care to govt? Why have we turned over our economy to govt?

    In the words of Ray Goff, “the man never quits” – he don’t quit.

  6. 504to404 // January 13, 2009 at am //

    Look… it was a cruddy situation all around. We (in New Orleans) have known that the “big one” was coming for 30 years and yet, did not prepare properly. Next, the state of Louisiana has had inept political leadership for that same 30 years.
    Hence, when the inevitable happened, no one was ready and Nagin and Blanco were like deer in the headlights. No one knew what to do fast enough.
    Then the Feds did not do enough, soon enough and the whole response system appeared to be in total collapse. Blame no one, blame everyone.
    I’m here in Atlanta now because New Orleans will never recover… it’s not the city it once was…

  7. 504to404 – I was just there for New Years and it was turly sad to see the empty buildings and homes.

    ICAtlanta – egg-zachary

    sansho1 – I would say that YOU should prepare to handle yoru own safety. It isn’t that hard or expensive.

    atlmalcontent – Reality is that when I walk my dog, criminals choose if they want to prey on me, but I can determine whether or not they are successful. I am not talking about vigilantes, nice non-sequitor, I am talking about the mindset that the government will save me so I have no duty to protect myself. I can do that through active means like self-defense training and a gun permit or through passive measure like moving to a safer place or staying inside after dark. The mindset that says I can just bop through my happy day and the governmetn will handle any problems puts you on a roof in a flood, which is all Katrina was at that point. The city buses were running for a couple of days beofre the storm, nearly 50,000 cars were hauled from the waters and everybody knew the levees were a joke. I don’t even live their and I knew the Levee Boards were corrupt. I learned that levees break when I listened to Led Zeppelin at the age of 10.

    Just sayin’

  8. BTW, Bush made more than one call I know of two, at least.

    He called Blanco and asked her to activate the Guard, she said let’s “wait and see”.

    He asked Nagin to evacuate and he said it would kill tourism.

    At ahta point I think he would be completely justified in saying to the Governor and Mayor, “Your on your own, you dumbasses”.

  9. DaleC beat me to the punch re: National Guard and “immediate response.”

    Can you imagine how Bush would have been treated if he had (unconstitutionally) sent in the National Guard w/o Blanco’s permission? The left would have added that to their list of how Bush “trashed the Constitution.”

    Bush was screwed now matter what he did.

  10. Earthquake! You’re on your own!!

  11. The party of personal responsibility sure manages to come up with a lot of excuses when it comes to W.

  12. Blackout! Every man for himself!!

  13. Sansho1 – do I get three days advance warning of the earthquake and blackout like they did for Katrina?

    If not, then an earthquake can pretty well be dealt with by stocking up a few days worth of food and water, some batteries for the flashlight and radio, etc

    The blackout only needs the batteries. I know because I have been in two in the last twenty years that lasted for 5 -7 days and were compounded by the snow and ice on the ground. Even when I lived in a building here in Modtown which was pretty much immune to blackout, I still had supplies.

  14. Atlmalcontent – first, I am not a Republican, so I am exempeted from your comment about excuses. Secondly, I have ripped Bush a new one over immigration, the bailout, spending, Alberto Gonzales, nominating his lady lawyer frinend from Texas for the SC, etc etc

    I believe in nailing him for what he did wrong and praising him for what he did right. I did the same with Clinton and Obama.

  15. Leave it to Sansho1 to come up with a ridiculous example (earthquake) to defend his ridiculous argument (we are no responsible for ourselves).

  16. No, you don’t (believe me — I was on the seventh floor of a Seattle office building when the 2001 quake hit…we were rockin’ and rollin’). If you did get such an advance warning of large-scale a disaster likely to cross state lines, it could be designated a regional crisis and federal would be designated the primary coordinator of response before the disaster happened. As was the case with Katrina.

  17. Leave it to Sansho1 to come up with a ridiculous example (earthquake) to defend his ridiculous argument (we are no responsible for ourselves).

    See above. Been in one. No local government has the capacity to deal with something that can go as badly wrong as an earthquake.

  18. I guess you live in a world where earthquakes don’t happen, Dale?

  19. Terrorist attack! Muster all county property taxes!!

  20. You are making this so easy for me.

    No, Sansho, I live in a world where earhtquakes don’t happen in Atlanta. I also live in a world where we pretty much know where earthquakes will happen. If you live in an earthquake zone, you should prepare for one. Can’t remember an earthquake in Atlanta or New Orleans, but I can name several ice storms and tornados here and floods and hurricanes in NOLA.

    The point is not to rely on government, whcih is precisely what the vast majority of “victims” in NOLA did, especially when you can reasonably predict that a particular disaster WILL hit your area. This is why people in tornado prone areas have shelters and lots of people in Florida have generators. It’s called self-preservation and preparedness, instincts which have been bred out of many people by generations of dependence on government.

    My point about advance notice was that earthquakes don’t make an three day advance appointment with your city, hurricanes, particularly Katrina do, therefore comparing an earthquake to a hurricane is apples and oranges.

    Terrorist attack? Thank you for making my point so clearly. Can you tell me how many Federal employees responded to the WTC in the first two days? Here is a hint, it is an integer between -1 and 1. Keep in minda that roads were not blocked by flood waters like in Katrina and the disaster area was limited to a few city blocks, not an entire region, so responding was much easier. The initial response to the WTC was local governmetns and civilians. At the time of Katrina, FEMA guidleines told everyone that FEMA was NOT among the first responders and that the locals should be prepared to handle the first 5 to 10 days by doing common sense things like riding a NOLA city bus to shelter, leaving town or activating the National Guard.

    Ah hell, there is that pesky “personal responsibility” thing again.

  21. “In the minutes after the first hijacked plane slammed into the World Trade Center towers, FEMA, as well as emergency services all over the city and state of New York, were mobilized. FEMA had activated 25 of the 28 Urban Search and Rescue teams in response terrorist attacks. Five were deployed to the Pentagon. 20 were deployed to the World Trade Center site” -from Wikipedia

    FEMA’s job is disaster response. It’s their job. Repeat. It’s their job. Repeat. It’s their job. Before they were folded into Homeland Security, they were good at it. See Sept. 11. Afterward, not so much. See Katrina. You’d have them act or not act based on your conception of who’s too stupid to save, or who has elected poor local leadership.

  22. Let me tell you something else about disaster preparedness. When I was sitting at my desk at work when the Seattle quake hit, and that f’ing building was losing windows, and people were screaming and running for cover, I wish you could have magically appeared and told everyone they should have been prepared for it. People don’t spend their days on high alert for any unlikely occurrence, and they aren’t always three feet from their backpack ready to head for the hills. What a stupid fucking world that would be. We pay professionals with our taxes to be ready for such large-scale unlikelihoods, and they’d better damn well be ready to mobilize.

  23. The teams were activated, that means notified. When did they get to the scene? It was not in the first few days, at least not in any significant portion, especially in compariosn to fire, police and rescue agencies from the immediate area. Also, access was not restricted by land access routes flooded by water aswas the case in NOLA.

    The VAST majority of response, almost exclusively, was NYPD, NYFD and their counterparts from surrounding communities.

    Disaster response is NOT their job. REPEAT, disaster RESPONSE is not their job. Their job is to come in and coordinate the management of the responses to large scale disasters. Hence the “M” in FEMA.

    FEMA is NOT a first responder, it never has been and was never intended to be so.

    FEMA is still good at what they are supposed to do. I could detail the huge response from FEMA to Katrina, but your mind likely can’t be changed so there is no point.

  24. Sansho – obviously no one can be ready for the minute that an earthquake or tornado strikes, but neither can the people you rely on with your taxes, can they? No, we are talking about the long tail that follows a disater. The lack of food, water, electricity, safety and security, etc.

    You refer to a “stupid fucking world”, I think it is a “stupid fucking” person who relies on government to protect them and provide for their well being in every way when they have proven over and over to be incapable of that mission. That mission is more unmanageable as you go up the line from loval to Fed.

    The government cannot protect me while walking my dog in Midtown and, in spite of the taxes I pay for that very protection, I would have to be a dumbass to walk out my door late at night and expect safety. that is where this discussion started after all.

  25. BTW, I need no instruction in disaster preparedness. I have worked in long toerm disaster recovery in Hurricane Floyd, Georges, Dolly, Katrina, Ivan, Ike among others, and too many tornadoes and floods to list. Usually, my deployments lasted three to six months. Perhaps I am a little more sensitive to preparedness than most people.

    I have seen this first hand on the ground to a greater extent than probably anyone you know. I know what happens with FEMA an dway before Homeland ever came along.

    For the first week or so after a major disaster, you can not rely on ANY government agency.

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