Monday, September 05, 2005

Hurricane Thoughts

Dateline: Hollywood gets it absolutely right in a nice little parody piece: Cable News Networks Interrupt Talking Heads To Cover News.

Aaron Broussard, president of Jefferson Parish, Louisiana - Full Transcript:

I am personally asking our bipartisan congressional delegation here in Louisiana to immediately begin congressional hearings to find out just what happened here. Why did it happen? Who needs to be fired? And believe me, they need to be fired right away, because we still have weeks to go in this tragedy. We have months to go. We have years to go. And whoever is at the top of this totem pole, that totem pole needs to be chain-sawed off and we've got to start with some new leadership... FEMA needs to be empowered to do the things it was created to do. It needs to come somewhere, like New Orleans, with all of its force immediately, without red tape, without bureaucracy, act immediately with common sense and leadership, and save lives.

All it would have taken was a phone call from Bush:

"We had the USS Bataan sailing almost behind the hurricane so once the hurricane made landfall, its search and rescue helicopters could be available almost immediately So, we had things ready. The only caveat is: we have to wait until the president authorizes us to do so. The laws of the United States say that the military can't just act in this fashion; we have to wait for the president to give us permission."

From a British reporter: When the developing world is judged to have done better than the United States in dealing with a humanitarian crisis you know something's gone seriously wrong.

Lea's Got It All Figured Out.

Mark Evanier has some good links... one is to the blog of a storm watcher, Brendan Loy, who followed Katrina's movements from the moment it was a tropical depression. His chilling comments make for a solid timeline of the events, including when New Orleans should have gotten help. Brendan doesn't pull any punches when people deserve contempt.

Speaking of contempt, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin apparently discovered a soul in the hurricane, but read what he did before. This bit from Loy's blog says it all:

The mayor of New Orleans is an idiot...I can't emphasize enough what a bad decision I think it is for New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin to delay the mandatory evacuation order until tomorrow morning...Will Ray Nagin go down in history as the mayor who fiddled while New Orleans drowned? Could be.

Another Mark Evanier rant links to an editorial about the incompetence of FEMA.

The fears for the disease vectors in New Orleans are rising with the continued existence of standing water. As if it weren't already bad enough.

Any sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice. It's hard to tell whether FEMA was there to rescue or kill survivors:

And there's more here. Again, was FEMA actually trying to help, or were they determined to kill the hurricane survivors?

New blog to cover FEMA Failures. The time to fix this is NOW, before another disaster hits.

Red Cross has been giving mind-boggling help. Look at the numbers.

Give to Operation USAGive to The Red Cross

And, absolute last thought tonight: if it's not the time for finger-pointing, even by people like me who are utterly useless, then why is Rove already finger-pointing?