Wednesday, 7 September 2005

Katrina – Timeline of Events

Think Progress has a comprehensives Katrina Timeline. I thought it could use as much Google Juice as possible.

Two sections are good to remember.

Friday, August 26


GULF COAST STATES REQUEST TROOP ASSISTANCE FROM PENTAGON: At a 9/1 press conference, Lt. Gen. Russel Honoré, commander, Joint Task Force Katrina, said that the Gulf States began the process of requesting additional forces on Friday, 8/26. [DOD]

Saturday, August 27


GOV. BLANCO ASKS BUSH TO DECLARE FEDERAL STATE OF EMERGENCY IN LOUISIANA: “I have determined that this incident is of such severity and magnitude that effective response is beyond the capabilities of the State and affected local governments, and that supplementary Federal assistance is necessary to save lives, protect property, public health, and safety, or to lessen or avert the threat of a disaster.”

FEDERAL EMERGENCY DECLARED, DHS AND FEMA GIVEN FULL AUTHORITY TO RESPOND TO KATRINA: “Specifically, FEMA is authorized to identify, mobilize, and provide at its discretion, equipment and resources necessary to alleviate the impacts of the emergency.”

Wednesday, August 31

PRESIDENT BUSH FINALLY ORGANIZES TASK FORCE TO COORDINATE FEDERAL RESPONSE: Bush says on Tuesday he will “fly to Washington to begin work…with a task force that will coordinate the work of 14 federal agencies involved in the relief effort.”

Thursday, September 1

8AM — BUSH CLAIMS NO ONE EXPECTED LEVEES TO BREAK: “I don’t think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees.”

I believe Amazon’s Free Shipping estimated delivery is 4 days, even then you get a tracking number.

George Lakoff on Katrina – Failure of Moral Values

In a nice follow up to my earlier There’s No Helping the NeoCons post, George Lakoff comments that Katrina was not only a natural disaster and federal failure, it was a complete failure of the Republican moral and political philosophy.

(emphasis is Lakoff’s)

“The [right-wing conservatives] central principle: Government has no useful role. The only common good is the sum of individual goods. It’s the difference between We’re all in this together and You’re on your own, buddy. It’s the difference between Every citizen is entitled to protection and You’re only entitled to what you can afford. It’s the difference between connection and separation. It is this difference in moral and political philosophy that lies behind the tragedy of Katrina.”

Tuesday, 6 September 2005

Monday, 5 September 2005

Federal Ineffectualness Self-Fulfilling Prophecy?

If you’re trying to show the value of and need for a small government, what better way to do it than bog it down in red tape, heel-dragging, target-less finger-pointing, and ignoring the pre-existing plans.

By cutting funding, acting slowly, and otherwise sabotaging success – whether in the public education system or the New Orleans recovery – the belief that “big” government “doesn’t work” is proved.

Unfortunately, the reason we have a federal government is to handle situations larger than any single state and important to all states; highways, commerce, disaster response, citizen education, and a handful more.

Best we can hope for is that dead at the bottom of Lake George is the conniving, budget-cutting, nihilism that caused it.

Saturday, 3 September 2005

You Don’t Piss Off Mayor Daley

While we were living in Chicago, a ComEd tripped up and a good chunk of the Loop was without electricity in the middle of the day. People stuck in elevators, the business day ground to a halt.

I have vivid memories of Mayor Daley reaming out ComEd on tv that evening. The problem was fixed promptly and ComEd took responsibility. His dad was the same way. Daleys get shit done can’t tolerate hemming and hawing. I always respected that.

I can only imagine the steam coming out of his ears as the Fed’s decline his offer of assistance in cleaning up Lake George.

“We are ready to provide more help than they have requested. We are just waiting for their call,” said Daley, adding that he was “shocked” that no one seemed to want the help.”

Friday, 2 September 2005

“George Bush Doesn’t Care About Black People”

Anyone else catch this on NBC’s Concert for Hurricane Relief?

The man that said it was on camera with Michael Myers. I didn’t recognize him. Did you?

According to PBCLiberal, it was non-NBC talking head Kayne West

Video can be found at Zebrality

Looks like I heard something different, the quote being reported is:

“George Bush doesn’t care about black people,” West said. “They’re saying black families are looting and white families are just looking for food…they’re giving the (Army) permission to shoot us.”

It’s great that NBC’s lawyer needed to state the obvious;

“….his opinions in no way represent the views of the networks. “

Like PBCLiberal stated, if West’s opinions did or the lawyers didn’t have to state the obvious, the network might actually have a fighting chance against cable, Fox, netflix, and your nephew’s video blog.

West’s comments definitely didn’t “ruin” the show, his authentic, unscripted comments they made it worth talking about. This post and all the others linked to in wouldn’t exist otherwise. Nor would I have known who Kayne West is or how he really feels about how the Katrina is being handled. Kudos for West for sticking his neck out. Shame on NBC for not understanding that unscripted is far more valuable and interesting than poorly written cue cards.

But if NBC doesn’t want viewers talking about them, I’m happy to not tune into them.

iFilm has the video also. I’ve corrected the title of this post to accurately reflect West’s comment. Though I’m starting to question the decision of changing this post’s title. Seems Liz Vang and He’ll Quit the Game” also heard “hates”.

Hmmm. Interesting.

Thursday, 1 September 2005

Who Do We Attack for Katrina?

Saturday Night Live had an opening sketch that sticks in my mind. In it, Bush wins the 2000 presidency and he’s commenting on the state of our nation: “The Great Lakes are on fire – even I know that’s not good.”

On September 11, 2001, 2,819 died in a terrorist action on our soil. Bush responded by focusing his energy on attacking Iraq. The grounds for such a move have been debated and debased elsewhere many time since. Still, we are in the middle of that uncomfortable decision, with our progress debatable. And a handful more of Americans dying on foreign soil each day.

On August 25, 2005, Katrina devastated Louisiana. Destroying one of the largest, most American of cities. Thousand are likely dead. Drowned in their own homes. From flooding caused by slashing 80% of the maintenance funding on weakening levees. The thousands that made it out of their homes watched each other starve and die while waiting for our over-stretched National Guard to rescue them (aren’t they in Iraq also?). The million that evacuated prior to this disaster are now looking for a home – any home – anywhere in the nearby states. Alabama, Texas, Tennessee are simply the first to be asked.

This is far, far worse than the World Trade Center. The entire population of New York City didn’t have to relocate. With nothing. Albeit with a heavy heart, the city that never sleeps picked itself up and continued onward. Even now.

New Orleans does not share that fate. Right now, it’s somewhere under 20 feet of sewage, corpses, and flood water. It will be years, if not decades, before that city is more than a shadow of itself. Until then, we have lost. Lost friends, lost homes, and lost a great American city.

Who do we attack for this? God?

There is no one to blame except ourselves. We weren’t prepared. Aside from the fact that the damage is greater and the number of lives affected is greater, what makes New Orleans more painful than 9/11? New Orleans was self-inflicted.

We elected Bush.

“New Orleans is more devastated than New York was.”( – even I know that’s not good?)

Jeneane Sessum, “President Bush Declares “War on Weather”

I quite like the War on Error