Thursday, September 08, 2005

"Because the President declared a state of emergency on
August 26, and because Blanco requested Federal Assistance on
August 27,Under the National Response Plan (as outlined in my Diary, here, and as is amply outlined in many, many places (I linked to them in my diary)....
Several things happened:Under the Homeland Security Act, the Stafford Act, and according to the NRP, this was AUTOMATICALLY determined to qualify as an "Incident of National Significance" - therefore, Responsibility for initial actions, coordination, and etc, AUTOMATICALLY fell upon the Director of DHS (Chertoff), and thereby AUTOMATICALLY fell upon FEMA and its director (Brown), and throught them, ultimately responsibility for command, control, and authority AUTOMATICALLY flows to the COMMANDER IN CHIEF...
In short, because Bush declared a disaster, the relief effort, by law, became the responsibility of the Federal Government Agencies. Any orders, actions, commands, and etc - done or not done, failed or successful, are the ultimate responsibility of the DHS, and the President.
Period." from These people (Republicans) really are evil. I don't mean just mean, or ill informed, or rude. I mean fucking evil. Blame the victim, blame the victim, blah blah blah blah. It's as simple as this-they're wrong about Blanco and Negin. They asked for help, and it never came until it was too damn late. Fine. All that aside-the results of this storm-telecommunications gone, toxic waters, dead people, disabled roadways-are an excellent version of the results of a terrorist attack. These people have had four years to fix this. This was the MBA president and the people who want to run government like a business. Effiency, right? New civil tone? Grownups in charge, right? And they actually get a chance to put their new tools, which they begged for, and said they absolutely had to have to protect us with, to work, and it is a category five clusterfuck. AND they have the nerve-the unmitigated GALL- to stand there and say that its not their fault! They dont want to play the blame game? yeah, sure-because they are the ones to blame!

Monday, September 05, 2005
"I have been in contact with a person trying to live through this horror in New Orleans. She has been straddling the position of disaster victim and wife of the Chief of the NOFD. The suicides, the shoot-to kill-order (for humans and animals) and the stress contributed to this gutwrenching exerpt of the e-mail I just received.
'You are not alone, and even the order against the pets are affecting the local police and firefighters. Our police superintendent's house was broken into and someone killed his dog. This wasn't in retaliation to the order to shoot to kill, it was a malicious attack because of who he is and represents. He was surrounded by a very angry crowd at the river, and nearly met his end. PTS, stress, little sleep, not knowing about your loved ones, are taking a huge toll. My first campaign was for the city to provide an email or satellite connection for our families left behind. I went to several stations, local and national, and they are still sharing the same phone that isn't of the 504 area code. I have broken down so many times watching just an hour of the news stations, and another suicide by a police officer.'
Please, if anyone can get this to Josh, the other journalists here, members of both print and electronic media, PLEASE DO! There has been no coverage of the shootings that have already taken place, much less the mounting suicides by police and other emergency workers. I know from my source that one officer committed suicide yesterday (ate a bullet) after his entire family was lost in the disaster and he couldn't cope with the destruction and the shoot-to-kill order any longer. This is an SOS to the media. Without them, nobody will know what is happening inside that place right now."


Sunday, September 04, 2005

"During the campaign of 2004, I spoke often of the two Americas: the America of the privileged and the wealthy, and the America of those who lived from paycheck to paycheck. I spoke of the difference in the schools, the difference in the loan rates, the difference in opportunity. All of that pales today. Today - and for many days and weeks and months to follow - we see a harsher example of two Americas. We see the poor and working class of New Orleans who don't own a car and couldn't evacuate to hotels or families far from the target of Katrina. We see the suffering of families who lived from paycheck to paycheck and who followed the advice of officials and went to shelters at the Civic Center or the Superdome or stayed home to protect their possessions. "

--Fmr. Sen. John Edwards

Love this man. Want to go back in time and vote for him again.
from Editor and Publisher magazine:

"(September 03, 2005) -- While a rising chorus in the press has taken the White House, FEMA and the Pentagon to task for performing miserably in their response to the human disaster on the Gulf Coast, few have focused on the most telling aspect of the entire failure. It’s not just incompetence. It’s a shameful lack of concern: The 9/11 “My Pet Goat” dithering on an administration-wide scale.Simply stated, the president and his top advisers chose vacation over action.While the media has done a good job in portraying the overall deadly failure of leadership, it has not focused enough on this deadly dereliction of duty. President Bush, in his weekly radio address on Saturday, said: “In America, we do not abandon our fellow citizens in their hour of need.” But Bush, and his top aides, quite frankly, did just that. I was reminded of this today, seeing pictures of Vice President Dick Cheney finally showing up at the White House after riding out the storm-of-the-century in Wyoming. Perhaps he brought back with him a couple dozen trout to throw on the grill for the White House staffers. His absence, and the president’s performance during it, can only add to the rumors that Bush is clueless without the Big Guy at his side. This follows Bush himself remaining on vacation for more than two days after the storm hit, despite acknowledging this was the worst disaster in the nation’s history. He did take a trip during those days, not back to Washington but out to San Diego to deliver a political speech comparing his Iraq war to World War II. It got little play because nearly everyone else in the country, beyond his inner circle, was focused on New Orleans instead. What that trip did produce was a picture of Bush laughing with a country singer and strumming a guitar. But at least the president did start heading home late Wednesday. As he did, Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice was still enjoying her vacation in New York. In fact, that night she enjoyed a few good yucks while attending the goofy Broadway play “Spamalot.” Ironically, the Bush team's performance this week did indeed seem like something out of a Monty Python skit. Each, in his or her own way, took a bunch of "silly walks."Condi also played tennis with Monica Seles and on Thursday went on a shoe-shopping spree on Fifth Avenue until a fellow customer yelled at her for not doing her job and bloggers exposed all of this. Then she hurriedly headed back to Washington. Whoops, we discovered she was overdue in getting a grip on offers to help that were pouring in from overseas governments and organizations. Paging Andrew Card: Turns out he was Bush's Maine man. And what of FEMA chief Michael Brown? He was so out-of-it that he didn’t even know about 10,000 evacuees living and dying at the Convention Center, even after they had received wide TV coverage for hours and hours. The next day, the president greeted him with, "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job." A medal is surely on the way. This from a president who has been fighting a "war on terror" in Iraq while appointing to the top FEMA position here at home a man whose main career experience was running an Arabian horse association. At a press conference on Thursday, the fourth day of the disaster, with newspapers and TV reporting tens of thousands stranded at hospitals, homes and a highway overpass, Homeland Security chief Michael Cherotff was asked by a reporter if he thought only hundreds or maybe many more needed rescued. He replied:“I'd be guessing. I mean, a thousand seems like a very large number, but we have already rescued several thousand. Hopefully, most people have gotten themselves onto roofs and have been picked up. But, as I said, rather than give you a guesstimate, I can tell you that as long as there is someone on a roof waving a flag, we're going to be sending a helicopter out there to get them.”At the same press briefing, Cherotff was asked if he thought there were enough soldiers on the ground to control the situation. His answer: “I'm satisfied that we have not only more than enough forces there and on the way. And frankly, what we're doing is we are putting probably more than we need in order to send an unambiguous message that we will not tolerate lawlessness or violence or interference with the evacuation.”While the 9/11 “My Pet Goat” episode was certainly illuminating, it’s not certain what might have worked out better that day had the president dropped the book and taken action. But his failure to grab the reins in the hurricane catastrophe for three days this week probably doomed hundreds, or more, to death. This is not mere incompetence, but dereliction of duty. The press should call it by its proper name."

Amen to that.

The President has been unforgivably cruel in this painful time.

Impeach George W. Bush now.