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February 01, 2006
Like I said...

The other day... Criminal Negligence...

Posted by David A at 07:27 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 7 Words
January 25, 2006
More of the Same....

From Talk Left in November....

Even some Republicans are growing weary of the administration's efforts to stonewall any investigation that might shed light on its poor performance. Rep. Thomas Davis III leads a Congressional panel investigating the administration's response to Hurricane Katrina. On Sept. 30, the panel asked for "e-mail and other correspondence between officials in the White House and other agencies during the response to the hurricane, as well as agency documents dealing with specific preparations for and responses to Hurricane Katrina." A month would seem more than adequate to collect and produce that information, but the administration has stalled.

It's still going on:

Yawn.... Do we really expect anything differen't from these guys?

UPDATE: Now it looks like they will claim something like executive privilege.... What a surprise. The worst thing about our country is the apathetic middle that allows this crap to continue.

Posted by David A at 02:57 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 148 Words
November 30, 2005
The Cause of the New Orleans Disaster

Paul from Wizbang does a "bang up job," of exposing the real reasons New Orleans flooded. Awesome job! And in this case, I am with HIM, where is the major media on this story?

Posted by David A at 11:24 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 34 Words
November 03, 2005
Michael Brown was drowning during Katrina...

If you need any proof of how over his head the horse trainer was during the Katrina dissaster, you have to read this, and this.

Hat tip C&L.

Posted by David A at 04:10 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 31 Words
October 30, 2005
Tearing apart the myths of Katrina's victims!

This is MUST READ!

Hat tip to Crooks and Liars!

If you bought into the racist dribble about the poor in New Orleans getting what they deserved, read the post and make up your own mind.

Posted by David A at 01:37 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0) | 38 Words
October 23, 2005
This just about sums it up, doesn't it....
WASHINGTON (AP) -- In the midst of the chaos that followed Hurricane Katrina, a Federal Emergency Management Agency official in New Orleans sent a dire e-mail to Director Michael Brown saying victims had no food and were dying.

No response came from Brown.

Instead, less than three hours later, an aide to Brown sent an e-mail saying her boss wanted to go on a television program that night, after needing at least an hour to eat dinner at a Baton Rouge, Louisiana, restaurant.

The e-mails were made public Thursday at a Senate Homeland Security Committee hearing featuring Marty Bahamonde, the first agency official to arrive in New Orleans in advance of the August 29 storm. The hurricane killed more than 1,200 people and forced hundreds of thousands to evacuate.

Bahamonde, who sent the e-mail to Brown two days after the storm struck, said the correspondence illustrates the government's failure to grasp what was happening.

"There was a systematic failure at all levels of government to understand the magnitude of the situation," Bahamonde testified. "The leadership from top down in our agency is unprepared and out of touch."

The 19 pages of internal FEMA e-mails show Bahamonde gave regular updates to people in contact with Brown as early as August 28, the day before Katrina made landfall. They appear to contradict Brown, who has said he was not fully aware of the conditions until days after the storm hit. Brown quit after being recalled from New Orleans amid criticism of his work.

Brown had sent Bahamonde, FEMA's regional director in New England, to New Orleans to help coordinate the agency's response. Bahamonde arrived on August 27 and was the only FEMA official at the scene until FEMA disaster teams arrived on August 30.

As Katrina's outer bands began drenching the city August 28, Bahamonde sent an e-mail to Deborah Wing, a FEMA response specialist. He wrote: "Everyone is soaked. This is going to get ugly real fast."

Subsequent e-mails told of an increasingly desperate situation at the New Orleans Superdome, where tens of thousands of evacuees were staying. Bahamonde spent two nights there with the evacuees.

The big question for me is, did we really learn anything.... I know, the story has been beat to death, but REALLY... Did we learn anything.

Read the rest of the article. The part about the dinner in Baton Rouge is pretty sickening. And Brown had the nerve to be outraged in the hearings following this dissaster...

Posted by David A at 03:36 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 412 Words
September 19, 2005
Repopulate New Orleans?

Joe has a good post, on the conflict between the Bush Administration and Mayor Nagin, over Reopening New Orleans. In this case, I have to agree with the President. While everyone is concerned about a possible Hurricane with Tropical Storm Rita, my concern is more about the wisdom of people circulating in what is still arguably a disaster area. The health concerns alone, bodies still being recovered, toxic waste, etc., are enough to warrant caution.

While I understand the Mayor's desire to get back to business, I think caution is a wiser course of action at this point.

Posted by David A at 04:00 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 99 Words
It's about time!

Clinton finaly opens up:

Former US president Bill Clinton sharply criticised George W. Bush for the Iraq War and the handling of Hurricane Katrina, and voiced alarm at the swelling US budget deficit.

Breaking with tradition under which US presidents mute criticisms of their successors, Clinton said the Bush administration had decided to invade Iraq "virtually alone and before UN inspections were completed, with no real urgency, no evidence that there were weapons of mass destruction."

The Iraq war diverted US attention from the war on terrorism "and undermined the support that we might have had," Bush said in an interview with an ABC's "This Week" programme.

Clinton said there had been a "heroic but so far unsuccessful" effort to put together an constitution that would be universally supported in Iraq.

The US strategy of trying to develop the Iraqi military and police so that they can cope without US support "I think is the best strategy. The problem is we may not have, in the short run, enough troops to do that," said Clinton.

On Hurricane Katrina, Clinton faulted the authorities' failure to evacuate New Orleans ahead of the storm's strike on August 29.

People with cars were able to heed the evacuation order, but many of those who were poor, disabled or elderly were left behind.

"If we really wanted to do it right, we would have had lots of buses lined up to take them out," Clinton.

He agreed that some responsibility for this lay with the local and state authorities, but pointed the finger, without naming him, at the former director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

And if you have ANY doubts about how poorly the war in Iraq has been executed, you need look no further than this week's Time Magazine.

Yeah it's a worse disaster than than we knew. And is beginning to look like the... shall we say it... Quagmire, that supporters are so afraid of.

In the meantime, hundreds continue to die weekly, British soldiers are torched in their tank, and it appears that the, "Last Throes," are going to last a long, long time.

As for the Hurricane Katrina thing.... I am a Gang Banger.

Update: John Kerry joins in and hammers the administration. If he had shown this kind of spirit on the campaign trail, he might be President.

Posted by David A at 03:23 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 394 Words
September 18, 2005
News Filters out about FUBAR FEMA!
(CNN) -- As Hurricane Katrina bore down on the Gulf Coast three weeks ago, veteran workers at the Federal Emergency Management Agency braced for an epic disaster.

But their bosses, political appointees with almost no emergency management experience, didn't seem to share the sense of urgency, a FEMA veteran said.

"We told these fellows that there was a killer hurricane heading right toward New Orleans," Leo Bosner, a 26-year FEMA employee and union leader told CNN. "We had done our job, but they didn't do theirs."

When it's all said and done, this is going to look very, very bad....

Posted by David A at 12:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 100 Words
September 16, 2005
Sticky Post - ISOU doing it's part for Hurricane Relief
Donate Now
In Search of Utopia's Charity of choice is the Red Cross. I have been working on ways we can help and have come up with a couple of ideas. I am still working with The Commissar to figure out a way for he and I to work together on some kind of bipartisan effort, but that for now is stalled. In the interim, here is what we are planning. At the end of September, I will personally donate a selection of Costa Rican Gourmet Coffees, or a box of premium cigars (eh, the kind you can not get in the U.S., lets just say), to the person who donates the largest ammount to any Katrina Related Charity.

All I require is a reciept of some sort showing the amount of your donation. Due to the cost of these items, minimum donation is $50. I will buy both items and the runner up will recieve whatever the high bidder did not choose. I will pay for shipping anywhere in the world.

I will also be working with my Costa Rican Business Parners to see what we can come up with. Stayed tuned for developments.

I still have hopes that we can create some sort of Bipartisan effort to raise money. I would appreciate any trackbacks and linking to this post.

Posted by David A at 09:18 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (4) | 220 Words
September 15, 2005
Two of my favorite people on Katrina

Bill Maher and Anderson Cooper together! And you know when that happens, some tough questions will be discussed.
Great Video on Crooks and Liars. Check it Out!

Posted by David A at 09:53 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | 29 Words
Hmmmmm Didn't this happen before?
WASHINGTON (AP) - Senate Republicans on Wednesday scuttled an attempt by Sen. Hillary Clinton to establish an independent, bipartisan panel patterned after the 9/11 Commission to investigate what went wrong with federal, state and local governments' response to Hurricane Katrina.

I'm not surprised, are you surprised?

Posted by David A at 09:08 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (1) | 46 Words
September 10, 2005
Damn, Damn, Damn!
"There are still a lot of things I want to say about Hurricane Katrina and the savage, apocalyptic vision of America that she revealed, floating face down in the water. But last night I came across an account of the search for real bodies -- not metaphorical ones -- in the stinking ruins of New Orleans. It's like something out of the charnel houses of World War II:

Volunteer rescuer Gregg Silverman, part of a 14-boat contingent from Columbus, Ohio, said he expected to find many more survivors in his excursion through the city's flooded streets. Instead, he found mostly bodies.

"They had me climb up on a roof, and I did bring an ax up to where a guy had tried to stick a pipe up through a vent,'' Silverman said. "Unfortunately, he had probably just recently perished. His dog was still there, barking. The dog wouldn't come. We had to leave the dog just up there in the attic.''

As for other bodies his group encountered: "Obviously we are not recovering them. We are just tying them up to banisters, leaving them on the roof.''

It is reported that the state of Louisiana has placed an order for 25,000 body bags.

For some reason, it wasn't until I read that story that the full horror of what happened in New Orleans finally hit home for me. Maybe it's because I was on the road part of last week, and missed most of the live broadcasts during the days when the city was in complete chaos. Maybe it's because I don't watch TV much even when I am home. But until now I've thought about the catastrophe more in terms of the loss of a great American city -- and less in terms of the individual human lives that were destroyed.

No longer. The image -- of a man frantically trying to breath through a pipe stuck in a ventilator grate as the waters rise over his head -- is too searing to hold at an emotional distance. How long did he survive, submerged in total darkness? And how many others died in the same bizarre trap -- too weak or terrified to break through the layers of plywood and asphalt that had suddenly become the lids on their underwater coffins?

Thinking about those deaths is like looking at pictures of people jumping, hand in hand, from the windows of the World Trade Center on 9/11 -- forced in a moment of howling panic to choose between the flames and the long fall to the pavement below. Such images are unendurable. The mind recoils from them as if we ourselves were caught in the same trap.

p>And suddenly all the backbiting over who failed first -- or most often, or most spectacularly -- seems too vile to worry about, much less write about." Billmon

He's right, and I can't take it anymore either... I have so much I want to say, so much anger. I want to rage against the injustice of what happened in New Orleans and elsewhere. I want someone to blame. I NEED someone to be angry with, even to HATE. I need it in a visceral way that surprises me at times with it's force. I just finished reading several posts by one of my Blog Daddies, Billmon, and I feel anger rising up in my like acidic bile, that no amount of Alka Seltzer will suppress.

I am an American, and yet I am ashamed of being an American right now... My driver asked me yesterday how a country as Rich as America could let so many die. I had no answer. Tomorrow is 9/11 and there will be solemn ceremonies and the trotting out of stories of heroism and personal reflection. I once took part in all of that. I wont tomorrow, because honestly, I don't have the stomach to look back any more. I will instead be thinking about a Disaster that did not have to happen. I will be thinking of a man desperately drowning while trying to breath through a pipe. I will be thinking about Racist cops denying people escape. I will be thinking about a Horse Breeder put in charge of saving lives. And I will be thinking about other heroes. The ones who tried desperately to help their fellows, even as their government city, state and federal failed them miserably.

The accountability argument has been made on both sides, usually drawn down party lines, and Billmon is right, it all seems pretty shallow now. There is a part of me so filled with anger that I want to stand on my roof and scream for justice, scream for retribution, but I see little changing, in spite of the outrage. When this is all over, I have no doubt that Karina will make 9/11 look insignificant in its human toll. Louisiana has ordered 25,000 body bags. Wrap your mind around that one for a minute. And yet, shamefully, I doubt that any politician or leader will drape themselves in the flag of this disaster. Instead we will likely see a whitewashing of the entire event.

So I am done. This will likely be my last post on Katrina and it's aftermath. Leave history and God to be the judge of the failures of men, because I have no doubt my country and those who support those who failed, have not the stomach for that judgement....

Some Other Posts you might want to Read:

Digby Expresses the Outrage that I feel right now.

The New York Times chronicles what went wrong. Hat Tip: Talk Left.

Brother Cobb answers his Conservative Brethren's criticism of Ray Nagin, and does a helluva job of it!


And Newsweek demonstrates just how disconnected from Reality Bush really is.

And this... Cop... Should be lined up against one of the levees and shot.

No... I don't want to talk about it any more, but I am sure as hell glad someone does...

Posted by David A at 08:28 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (2) | 999 Words
September 09, 2005
Oh the Outrage....

Wizbang points out this morning that the DNC was using a petition to fire the FEMA Director, to raise funds, you know, to do political stuff. Of course the Republicans never do such things. President Bush would never use a National Tragedy for political gain.... Would he?

While I agree that Katrina should not be used as a fundraiser for anyone other than the victims, I am a bit startled by the sheer hypocrisy.

Posted by David A at 10:16 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 76 Words
September 08, 2005
The Boy King...

This kind of says it all, doesnt it:

We have a man-child as President of the United States. That may seem an unfair characterization, but consider the President's performance last Friday when he ventured to the storm ravaged Gulf Coast. In a revealing moment, he referred to the FEMA Director as "Brownie" and joked about his past good times in New Orleans.

It was inappropriate behavior that one would expect from an adolescent and not the adult leader of the free world. It largely went unnoticed.

But perhaps the clearest demonstration of the President's arrested development is his inability to accept responsibility or accountability. Another revelatory moment was when the President pronounced that the response to Katrina was " not acceptable." Of course, he was the one in charge. It was as if a child passively proclaimed that "the milk was spilt".


Posted by David A at 12:39 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 142 Words
September 07, 2005
The Video.... The Lies.... I am waiting for a Conservative Response

In the age of video, it is "hard work," lying...

Yeah... Real Hard Work...

Anyone who can watch this video and still claim that this is all about Bush Hatred is... well... delusional at best.

Posted by David A at 10:13 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 36 Words
Things that make me scratch my head in wonder...
It has been a week since Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast, leveled New Orleans and left hundreds of thousands of Americans homeless. We saw the best of America during that time—millions of people stepped forward to offer help. Meanwhile, the Bush administration failed at their most important job: keeping America safe. The federal effort was too little, too late and it is now becoming obvious that hundreds or even thousands of people died as a result.

Then, starting Friday, in a Karl Rove-led campaign, the White House started to blame state and local officials and even the victims who were stranded without transportation when the Hurricane arrived. Sign our petition demanding that the Bush administration stop blaming victims, including state and local officials, and focus on helping them.

Timeline

Friday, Aug. 26: Gov. Kathleen Blanco declares a state of emergency in Louisiana and requests troop assistance.


Saturday, Aug. 27: Gov. Blanco asks for federal state of emergency. A federal emergency is declared giving federal officials the authority to get involved.


Sunday, Aug. 28: Mayor Ray Nagin orders mandatory evacuation of New Orleans. President Bush warned of Levee failure by National Hurricane Center. National Weather Service predicts area will be "uninhabitable" after Hurricane arrives. First reports of water toppling over the levee appear in local paper.

Monday, Aug. 29: Levee breaches and New Orleans begins to fill with water, Bush travels to Arizona and California to discuss Medicare. FEMA chief finally responds to federal emergency, dispatching employees but giving them two days to arrive on site.


Tuesday, Aug. 30: Mass looting reported, security shortage cited in New Orleans. Pentagon says that local authorities have adequate National Guard units to handle hurricane needs despite governor's earlier request. Bush returns to Crawford for final day of vacation. TV coverage is around-the-clock Hurricane news.

Wednesday, Aug. 31: Tens of thousands trapped in New Orleans including at Convention Center and Superdome in "medieval" conditions. President Bush finally returns to Washington to establish a task force to coordinate federal response. Local authorities run out of food and water supplies.

Thursday, Sept. 1: New Orleans descends into anarchy. New Orleans Mayor issues a "Desperate SOS" to federal government. Bush claims nobody predicted the breach of the levees despite multiple warnings and his earlier briefing.

Friday, Sept. 2: Karl Rove begins Bush administration campaign to blame state and local officials—despite their repeated requests for help. Bush stages a photo-op—diverting Coast Guard helicopters and crew to act as backdrop for cameras. Levee repair work orchestrated for president's visit and White House press corps.

Saturday, Sept. 3: Bush blames state and local officials. Senior administration official (possibly Rove) caught in a lie claiming Gov. Blanco had not declared a state of emergency or asked for help.

Monday, Sept. 5: New Orleans officials begin to collect their dead.

(Adapted from: Katrina Timeline.

Those are the facts. State and local officials BEGGED for help as people in their city suffered. The Bush administration didn't get the job done and when their failure became an embarrassment they attacked those asking for help.

The New York Times reported on Friday that Karl Rove and White House communications director Dan Bartlett "rolled out a plan...to contain the political damage from the administration's response to Hurricane Katrina." The core of the strategy is "to shift the blame away from the White House and toward officials of New Orleans and Louisiana."

This is the same pattern of smearing that the Bush political machine has used for a decade. John McCain and John Kerry had their war records smeared. The CIA cover of Ambassador Joseph Wilson's wife was blown after he criticized the Bush Iraq policy. Now, Hurricane victims are attacked when the Bush administration failed to do their duty to help them.

It isn't just the Bush administration. Republican Senator Rick Santorum blamed victims in a TV interview and House Speaker Dennis Hastert suggested New Orleans should not be rebuilt.

Excerpted from a MoveOn.org mailing. Sign their petition here.

I don't have much to say about this. I mean expressions of outrage just seem to bounce off the walls these days. These people are truly disgusting in their ability to play politics with disaster, and to put it simply... LIE. That there are people out there who still, after all this, refuse to deal with the truth is Frankly MIND BOGGLING!

Posted by David A at 08:39 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 728 Words
Scumbag Alert

Heads Up:

Sept. 7, 2005 -- The American Red Cross has asked the FBI to investigate at least 15 fake Web sites that are designed to look like legitimate Red Cross appeals for donations to Hurricane Katrina relief efforts.

"It's outrageous what they are doing to American citizens who are giving their hard-earned money to help people who desperately need their help," said Mary Elcano, the general counsel for the American Red Cross. "There's no question in my mind that these are the lowest of the low."

I knew it was only a matter of time before these dirtbags took advantage of the situation. I have actually been waiting for my first 419 letter on the subject. Anyway, take care to whom and how you donate.

Posted by David A at 08:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 126 Words
September 06, 2005
Oh That Wacky Bush Family

First Barbara thinks that the victims are "comfortable," after having lost everything and in some cases everyone, that was important to them, and now George is going to "Lead the investigation into what went wrong!"

GEORGE Bush risked further antagonising his critics yesterday by rejecting calls for an independent commission to examine what went wrong in the handling of Hurricane Katrina and announced instead that he would personally lead an investigation.

Mr Bush said he was not in the business of finger-pointing and insisted it was important to establish whether the United States could respond to another major storm or an attack with weapons of mass destruction. But the US Congress, apparently unprepared to accept a single presidential inquiry, said it would hold its own hearings.

"Government at all levels failed," the Republican senator Susan Collins said after meeting the president. Announcing that the Senate governmental affairs committee would hold its own investigation, she added: "It is difficult to understand the lack of preparedness and the ineffective initial response to a disaster that had been predicted for years and for which specific dire warnings had been given for days."

On another difficult day for the president, his mother, Barbara Bush, ventured on to dangerous ground after meeting evacuees, suggesting that some of the poor who had been victims of the hurricane were benefiting from their evacuation. "So many of the people here, you know, were underprivileged anyway, so this is working very well for them," she chuckled after a tour of the Houston Astrodome in Texas. "What I'm hearing, which is sort of scary, is they all want to stay in Texas. Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality."

She later reiterated her views. "Look what's happened. Hundreds of thousands of people have been evacuated and are in comfortable shelters."

Mrs Bush, who was accompanying her husband, the former president George Bush snr, as he and his successor, Bill Clinton, launched a national fund-raising campaign, went on: "Almost everyone I've talked to says 'We're going to move to Houston'."

Her son has faced intense criticism of his and the federal government's handling of the crisis in New Orleans and the failure to respond sooner when the scale of the disaster became clear.

Yesterday, as efforts continued to repair the breached levees which let in the floodwater and preparations were made at a giant morgue to receive the thousands of bodies expected to be recovered when the water recedes, Mr Bush called congressional leaders to the White House for their first meeting since Katrina struck.

Stung by the criticism he has faced, he said later: "What I intend to do is lead an investigation to find out what went right and what went wrong.

"We still live in an unsettled world. We want to make sure we can respond properly if there is a WMD attack or another major storm."

But he rejected calls for a commission to investigate the response to the hurricane, insisting it was not the time to point fingers. "One of the things people want us to do here is play the blame game," he said. "We got to solve problems. There will be ample time to figure out what went right and what went wrong."

I got a couple words for both of them, Barbara, shut up. And Mr. President, let me save you some time and the people some money. What went wrong was a dissasterous failure in Leadership... A lot of Leadership from both sides, but most importantly, from YOU and the group of handpicked cronies like the horsetrainer you chose to run FEMA. So it is a bit late for you to LEAD anything...

Posted by David A at 11:28 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0) | 611 Words
September 05, 2005
Sticky Post - Drop Cash for Hurricane Relief

Liberal Blogs for Hurricane Relief

"There's nothing wrong with America that can't be fixed by what's right with America."
Bill Clinton

Hurricane Katrina destroyed thousands of lives. Together, we're raising $1 million for the American Red Cross and prove that the liberal blogosphere can help our fellow citizens.

Please donate now

You can also get the advertisement on the Right for your blog, here. Please spread the word on this, and get your own ad to place on your blog.

Note: This post will remain at the Top of my blog for the next two weeks, or as long as is needed.

Posted by David A at 02:00 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0) | 103 Words
September 04, 2005
Best Round Up on Katrina Politics I have seen...

As usual, Joe Gandelman of The Moderate Voice, has the best roundup on the issue of the day. All I can say is I was surprised at the number of conservatives and moderates who actually agreed with my stance on the matter. This is a must read guys. I believe this disaster signals the begining of the end for Bush, more and more of the "faithful are begining to see the light," and when some of his most stalwart supporters in the Conservasphere use language like:

The Blogs of War's John Little's initial reaction:"I don't know what my opinion is worth in this matter, and I certainly don't mean to imply that the responders on the ground are anything but heroic, but the federal response seems inadequate, sluggish, ineffective, completely at odds with what I would have expected in a post-9/11 America. We've lost an entire city, many cities actually, and the response just doesn't seem to be rising to the level required."

I think it is safe to say he has a REAL problem...

Posted by David A at 12:24 AM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0) | 175 Words
September 03, 2005
Anyone but Bush....

Okay, I promised myself that I would not play politics today, but this is too difficult to pass up. For the last couple of days, Jay Tea of Wizbang has been OUTRAGED, OUTRAGED I tell ya! That I would the audacity to blame Bush for any of the problems in New Orleans and the surrounding area! So what do I find on Wizbang today???

"Note that the commander-in-chief of the Louisiana National Guard is Governor Kathleen Blanco (D). How she's deflected all blame for the delays in deployment is beyond me (certainly having the "D" behind her name doesn't hurt), especially when (as of Wednesday) only half of the available Louisiana National Guard was deployed for Hurricane Katrina relief efforts..."


Kevin at Wizbang

Still no mention of the disastrous FEMA response, who I believe report to the President... Nor did I note any mention that the bulk of the LA Guard is in Iraq... Oh well. Jay will of course claim that the post was not his so he has no responsibility for it. I just wonder if he gave Kevin the same lecture he gave me....

Posted by David A at 04:39 PM | Comments (10) | TrackBack (0) | 188 Words
Some Wisdom from Random Fate

You have GOT to read this post at Random Fate:

Last night, CNN's Anderson Cooper abandoned the old persona to throttle Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., in a live interview. (See the video or read the transcript.)

"Does the federal government bear responsibility for what is happening now? Should they apologize for what is happening now?" Cooper opened.

As if campaigning before the local Democratic Ladies' Club lunch, Landrieu sing-songed back, "Anderson, there will be plenty of time to discuss all of those issues, about why, and how, and what, and if." She went on to thank President Bush, President Clinton, former President Bush, Senators Frist and Reid, and "all leaders that are coming to Louisiana, and Mississippi, and Alabama, "for their help.

Her condescending filibuster continued: "Anderson, tonight, I don't know if you've heard maybe you all have announced it but Congress is going to an unprecedented session to pass a $10 billion supplemental bill tonight to keep FEMA and the Red Cross up and operating."

Cooper suspended the traditional TV rules of decorum and, approaching tears of fury, said: "Excuse me, Senator, I'm sorry for interrupting. I haven't heard that, because, for the last four days, I've been seeing dead bodies in the streets here in Mississippi. And to listen to politicians thanking each other and complimenting each other, you know, I got to tell you, there are a lot of people here who are very upset, and very angry, and very frustrated. And when they hear politicians slap you know, thanking one another, it just, you know, it kind of cuts them the wrong way right now, because literally there was a body on the streets of this town yesterday being eaten by rats because this woman had been laying in the street for 48 hours. And there's not enough facilities to take her up. Do you get the anger that is out here? I mean, I know you say there's a time and a place for, kind of, you know, looking back, but this seems to be the time and the place. I mean, there are people who want answers, and there are people who want someone to stand up and say, "You know what? We should have done more. Are all the assets being brought to bear?"

Landrieu kept her cool, probably because she's in Baton Rouge, while the stink of corpses caused Cooper to tremble in rage all the way to the commercial break.

I saw this interview live; it was painful.

I excerpted the Anderson Cooper interview because it/he says so well in that interview, what I have been trying to say for the last couple of days.

Jack does an awesome job of putting it all together, and more or less blowing most of this argument out of the water.

He also points out that there are a lot of people accountable for what happened and did not happen in New Orleans, including Democratic Leaders like the aforementioned Senator, and the Mayor who seemed to completely break down under the pressure.

I am not going to rehash or refight the last couple days of arguments about accountability, but I strongly reccomend this post, and I will echo Anderson Cooper's comment,

"I mean, I know you say there's a time and a place for, kind of, you know, looking back, but this seems to be the time and the place. I mean, there are people who want answers, and there are people who want someone to stand up and say, "You know what? We should have done more. Are all the assets being brought to bear?"

I also like Jacks final thoughts on the issue:

Who can be held accountable?

That question is the easiest one to answer in this entire tragedy.

To find who the American people should hold accountable, go to the nearest mirror and look into it.

We are proud that the United States is a democracy at all levels of government, city, county or parish, state, federal. All of those tasked with creating disaster plans, with coordinating activities between the different levels of government, with ultimately minimizing as much as reasonably possible the effects of disasters natural or man-made ultimately report to the voters, directly or indirectly.

So, who is accountable?

Those who chose the ones who call themselves our leaders.

Those who voted.

Amen

Posted by David A at 02:16 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | 727 Words
September 02, 2005
Bipartisan Relief Effort For Katrina

The Commissar and I are going to try and organize a BiPartisan Relief effort for Katrina victims, so we can put asside the political bull for a moment and work together, anyone interested in Joining, contact myself or the Commissar here or at this post. If we are going to truly make this biPartisan, then lets ask in that spirit, then lets get at it, and keep politics out of THIS particular effort.

UPDATE: Well it looks like the Commissar wants to make such cooperation a contest, which I dont agree with, so we agreed last night to support each other, but have not come to any conclussions as to how we can work together. In the interim, I will be posting my own fundraiser later this morning.

Posted by David A at 07:12 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack (0) | 129 Words
Strange Bedfellows...

It is strange when I find myself agreeing with La Shawn Barber, at least partially for two days straight. Through Angel, who does a damned good job, AGAIN, of reminding La Shawn of the purposes of True Christianity, I discover this post:
(I am partially excerpting it, but please visit La Shawn and read the whole thing). It is further proof that even Conservatives have concerns about the way this dissaster has been responded to:

Liberals hate George Bush, and no matter what he does, they'll use anything and anyone to get at him. I don't hate the man. I voted for him. I want him to succeed, but more than that, I want to be safe, feel safe, and I don't. The federal government's response to Hurricane Katrina has been an epic and humiliating embarrassment.

So Bush is "raising" his profile. I'm happy for him.

[Note: To illustrate how out of touch government bureaucrats and politicians are with the people, Michael Savage talked about watching on split screen a homeland security chief giving out a web site address as people waded in water up to their necks. The people have no homes, no computers, no electricity, and bureaucrats were telling them to check the DHS web site.]

Some "super power" we are. We’re a laughingstock. Not only do starving victims have to deal with hunger, thirst, heat and stench, they have to protect themselves against THUGS the cops ignored in the beginning. Now the looting is out of control. I've heard about marauding idiots raping and murdering, but you know what? I have not read one story about the police killing any marauding idiots. Why is that?

Why aren't the military down there killing criminals and rescuing victims? Navy ships were dispatched a couple of days ago. What are they doing? Are they airlifting food and water?

I know, I know, George Bush is only one man, but the Democrats are circling in the water. They're going to have his head for this, for all the wrong reasons, of course, but I won't be lifting a finger to defend him. Who cares anyway? I want those people helped. I want them fed and cared for, and want those thugs SHOT on sight.

It's September 2. The storm ended four days ago. People have been waiting, begging for help, and all politicians do is talk, talk, talk. Doctors and nurses are begging for help. The aftermath of the storm is much worse than the storm itself.

We send billions of dollars overseas. We help everyone else, but we can't even help ourselves. Why was the federal government slow to respond? Why weren't rescue efforts coordinated? Isn't that what all those billions of homeland security dollars were supposed to do? Why are people still waiting to be rescued?

I'm ashamed of this country and its bumbling leadership today. Bush and Co. are going to catch he** from all angles, including the race angle, and I hope they catch it good, too. Billions we spend, and all we have to show for it are four-day-old corpses on the side of the road, starving and injured people, and women and children being raped by animals who shouldn’t even be alive.

No I don't agree with the "shoot them and let God sort it out," nonsense, nor do I agree with her comments on Clinton. What I do agree with is the sense of embarrassment at a National Government that appears to be more keystone cops than effective solution providers. In this case, I share La Shawn's outrage, even if I don't completely agree with ALL of her solutions.

Instead of defending Bush, where are the rest of the Right Wing Bloggers in expressing outrage?

Posted by David A at 05:10 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 626 Words
I see that the "Semen Wisdom" Fan club has arrived....

The idiot meter is about to go off the scale in the Hurricane Katrina debate, as scores of Jeff G fans start to stream into ISOU to defend their hero. Bring it on boys, I am not going to delete ONE idiotic, cowardly screed. I welcome you, give you a platform, a vent for your hatred. There is nothing I can write that will demonstrate BETTER what we are dealing with than to just let you go at it. So I wont delete a thing, not even the one I just read that insulted my dead mother. Yeah, bring it on, show just how much class and intelligence you have.

Posted by David A at 03:13 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack (0) | 110 Words
Welcome Washington Post Readers

Welcome Washington Post readers, as you can see, there is quite a debate going on over the Hurricane. Feel free to jump in with comments, regardless of your point of view.

Posted by David A at 12:13 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 31 Words
Criticism about Criticism
WASHINGTON - President Bush, facing blistering criticism for his administration's response to Hurricane Katrina, said Friday "the results are not acceptable" and pledged to bolster relief efforts with a personal trip to the Gulf Coast.

"We'll get on top of this situation," Bush said, "And we're going to help the people that need help."

He spoke on the White House grounds just before boarding his presidential helicopter, Marine One, with Homeland Security Department secretary Michael Chertoff to tour the region. The department, which oversees the Federal Emergency Management Agency, has been accused of responding sluggishly to the deadly hurricane.

So Bush is now in the affected region, and has admitted that the response has been ineffective. This six days and who knows how many unnecessary deaths since the disaster first struck. There are many on the Right who don't want to talk about who's fault it is that this happened. Some want to imply that Left Bloggers are being petty. There is NOTHING petty about the death and destruction in Luisianna, Mississippi and Alabama. And there is NOTHING that would convince me that these same people would not have been all over Clinton, had this happened on his watch. Without even getting into the LA National Guard being in Iraq, or the fact that the Government cut moneys needed to keep New Orlean levy system functioning, there are still plenty of accountability issues in this case. And Bush's statement today is proof of them.

Call me petty all you like, but I do not consider it petty to hold our government accountable in times of crisis, and perhaps those criticizing the critics have not thought of this, but it has been six days since the Hurricane first hit. Look at the first line of the above article... Do you think that WITHOUT the criticism from the Left Spere, that Bush would be there today?

I have distant relatives that live in New Orleans, as well as countless personal friends and Fraternity Brothers. At this point I don't know where any of them are. I am angry and it appears that a LOT of Americans are angry. I am also dissapointed, that the President elected for Strong Leadership has so far shown VERY LITTLE strength or Leadership. Perhaps those of you who voted for him can stomach that, even EXCUSE it, I can't and won't. So dont DARE lecture me or others for "politicizing the disaster," when YOUR SIDE has politicized everything from 9/11 forward. This situation stinks with the smell of water bloated dead bodies. You are right about one thing, this event is being politicized, but not by the people calling for accountability. It is being politicized by the same people who time after time have excused the failures of this administration. There are two disasters taking place today, one is obvious, the other has been going on for five years!

And while you are pointing fingers at the Left, perhaps you should read this article about how one Conservative Magazine wants to blame the victims!

UPDATE: Jeff G weighs in on this post. As usual it's a distortion of what I wrote:

update: Here is "reasonable" lefty David Anderson, doing what he does best: congratulating himself and his ideological brethren
for saving the poor and displaced by heaping scorn and blame on the
President and his administration for a devestation (sic) he pretends to understand.

Because, you see, without the lefties screaming and yelling about how
Bush hates brown people and wants to see them dead or about how he
underfunded a levee that, were it to have prevented this disaster,
would have needed to be 50% taller to stop the Category 4 storm surge
(a plan that was never in the pipeline) they FORCED him to provide the relief he otherwise wasn't going to give.

They got him off vacation and into ACTION, however reluctantly. THEIR CRITICISM IS SAVING LIVES!

This, my friends, is why having a debate with wannabe pundits on the left is a losing proposition: their ignorance of the facts is surpassed only by their preening and utterly unfounded self-righteousness.

Like Gulliver, I fear I'm beginning to despise large swathes of humanity.

Welcome to the club Jeff, better late than never. I despised hypocrites a long time ago. And just to make it clear, I never accused Bush of Racism, I accused him of incompetence. Neither did I say anyone forced him to take action. What I said was that the criticism from across a broad segment of NON-Kool Aide drinking Americans forced him to move more quickly. Five days is a bit much don't ya think? But gee thanks for reading the blog and for the link. Us "wanna be pundits," take all the help we can get, even from an arrogant child who's own press and preening fan base has went to his head. Oh, and just so you know, I do understand disasters, having lived through a few of them myself. What I dont understand is people who just cant acknowledge that they are wrong. That never fails to amaze and annoy me.

Update HERE.

Posted by David A at 11:02 AM | Comments (41) | TrackBack (2) | 857 Words
The face of Pain

I found this Washington Post Article via Negrophile tonight.

PH2005090102502.jpg

"It was like going to hell and back," said Bernadette Washington, 38, a black homemaker from Orleans Parish who had slept under a bridge the night before with her five children and her husband. She sighed the familiar refrain, stinging as an old-time blues note: "All I have is the clothes on my back. And I been sleeping in them for three days."

With all the stories of looting, and images of Black people in the streets, some acting like animals, stories like this one, stories of a family just trying to survive in a time of unspeakable horror, get lost.

As I look at my own children, especially little Apollonia, sleeping peacefully in her crib tonight, my heart goes out to these people. I have been through a number of dissasters in my life, most notably the Northridge Earquake, but never have I experienced anything close to what these people are suffering.

I can't help but to think that the media images of rampaging looters must be damaging to the sense of kinship other Americans have with the victims. And yet it is stories like the one above that say to us all, "There by the grace of God, go I."

Posted by David A at 01:22 AM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0) | 212 Words
September 01, 2005
Hurricane Katrina Donations

The Red Cross link for donations to help out hurricane victims....

Also, I will auction off any cartoon (the original artwork) on Zencomix and donate all proceeds to the Red Cross. If there is a cartoon you want, bid on it in the comments section at Zencomix. Minimum bid is $5


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Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Posted by Doogntoon at 09:44 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 52 Words
Truth, Anger and Righteous Indignation!

This is one of the most devastatingly brilliant pieces of blogging I have EVER READ! Thanks to the Brad Blog, for the heads up. It is a long piece, and brilliant every word, but I could not excerpt it in it's entirety. Go read the whole thing!


What happens when Chertoff (whose name actually means "of the Devil" in Russian) decides to forgo civil liberties in general and abuses his office, err, industrial department of Homeland Security? What happens when these Homelanders declare Martial Law in order to keep people from looting, but will not supply them with water, food, and other life sustaining supplies?

Apparently not a damn thing.

After all, no blond "good Christian" wealthy Republican children are drowning. Fox News anchors sit laughing at this tragedy but cry and piss on themselves because a blond girl on an island went missing (no offense to the family of the missing girl).

Do you realize that one person - one single person who is white, blond haired, and blue eyed - is more important to the networks than the thousands of black children spiraling to their deaths in a swirl of sewage in a once historic city?

Looting is what the networks are covering, as though such activity is "typical" of what "black people" do. The majority of residents left behind were the poor, who - due to the inexcusable mismanagement of emergency resources, coupled with high oil prices - were unable to leave on their own. The poor in this country happen to be minorities, so the people left behind were minorities.

Take away food, water, and other supplies and what should someone do? Swim over to an ATM and get some soggy money out? Or maybe dive in, holding their breath, and swim through their underwater living room looking for a lost wallet? Not to worry, the Pentagon is on its way, Martial law is declared, journalists are forced out, and those saved are happily dining on cat food.

Bush's cutting of his vacation short by a whole two hours - jetting off to DC, from where he can look Presidential -- is almost as timely as is him finally putting down My Pet Goat.

And where is that treasure of a mother, that national "I love my gay daughter when it works for the campaign" bastion of integrity? Lynn Cheney, the doyenne of Christian values, is probably rehearsing her "I am an indignant mother" routine, somewhere in the bowls of her underground mansion. Because she is not out, carrying buckets or collecting donations or for god's sake doing something to help the people of "her country."

Congress is still on vacation even though we are witnessing a national tragedy that could produce the worst death toll in recent US history.

Condi's father a prominent minister and educator is spinning in his grave as black women and children drown, while Condi stands and shills somewhere who the hell knows where on how we are spreading Democracy. As though such a thing as Democracy could be spread through rape, torture, and murder, like some venereal disease.

Where is the god damn leadership of this country? Dick, Condi, Rummy, anyone? Bueller? Anyone?

You know I finaly figured out why Jay Tea was so angry with my earlier post. Anyone from the Right who has watched what has happened in the Gulf Coast and is NOT having an "Oh Shit," moment, has got to be delusional. This disaster has absolutely stripped the myth away from George W. Bush and demonstrated not only the complete incompetence of his administration, but the callousness of it as well. It has also completely destroyed the MYTH of George W. Bush as a Leader in times of crises. This is a repeat of the Seven Minute Reading Session, as planes crashed into the towers, only this one has lasted five days. And honestly, if I was a Republican right now, I would be embarrassed beyond words.

Changing the subject will not change the facts. Shields are down Scotty, and there isn't enough Kool Aide in the world to bring 'em back up!

Posted by David A at 09:28 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 690 Words
Looting

Angel sent me the link to La Shawn Barber's post about Looters in New Orleans. While I don't often agree with La Shawn, there are some things about her post that ring true to me.

New Orleans is a disaster, people are suffering, and criminals who roam the streets, robbing non essentials and luxury items need to be dealt with harshly. So do the thugs who reportedly are raping women and stealing relief supplies only to sell them back to victims. Do I believe people should be shot on site, no not really, not unless they are armed and presenting a threat to relief workers, law enforcement or the general public.

But I have little tolerance for scum who feed on the suffering of others. What do I think should happen to them? They should be put to work cleaning up the rubble, chain gang style, and they should be kept that way until the city is cleaned up. They should be tried by military style courts on the scene, sentenced and put to work under the supervision of the National Guard and police, at least the police who aren't stealing themselves, (What idiots).

As for shooting people on site, well if they are caught in the act of violent crime and armed, I have no problem with that.

Posted by David A at 09:04 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 221 Words
Jack Caferty Wisdom

It looks like a Broad Spectrum of Americans are pretty fed up with the way the disaster is being handled. This today from the Situation Room:

JACK CAFFERTY, CNN ANCHOR: Well, and the thing that's most glaring in all of this is that the conditions continue to deteriorate for the people who are victims in this are and the efforts to do something about it don't seem to be anywhere in sight.

I want to read you something, Wolf. This is a quote from an editorial: "A better leader would have flown straight to the disaster zone and announced the immediate mobilization of every available resource. The cool, confident, intuitive leadership Bush exhibited in his first term, particularly in the months following 9/11, has vanished." Now that's not from some liberal rag. That is an editorial from one of the most conservative newspapers in the country, New Hampshire's "Union Leader."

"The New York Times," not unexpectedly, kind of chimed in. They said the President showed up a day later than he was needed, and they excoriated him for appearing casual to the point of carelessness. Harsh words coming from FEMA's former Disaster Response Chief Eric Tolbert who says the government was not ready and shifted its attention from natural disasters to fighting the war on terror.

The questions that we ask on THE SITUATION ROOM every afternoon, Wolf, are posted on the website two or three hours before we go on the air. And people who read the website often begin to respond before the show actually starts. The questions this hour is how would you rate the response of the federal government to Hurricane Katrina? I got to tell you something. We got 5 or 600 letters, before the show even went on the air. No one, no one says the federal government is doing a good job in handling one of the most atrocious and embarrassing and far reaching and calamitous things that has come along in this country in my lifetime. I'm 62. I don't remember -- I remember the riots in Watts. I remember the earthquake in San Francisco. I remember a lot of things.

I have never ever seen anything as badly bungled and poorly handled as this situation in New Orleans. Where the hell is the water for these people? Why can't sandwiches be dropped to those people that are in that Superdome down there? I mean what is going -- this is Thursday. This is Thursday. This storm happened five days ago. It's a disgrace. And don't think the world isn't watching. This is the government the taxpayers are paying for, and it's fallen right flat on its face, as far as I can see, in the way it's handled this thing.

We're going to talk about something else before the show is over, too, and that's the big elephant in the room. The race and economic class of most of the victims, which the media hasn't discussed much at all, but we will a bit later -- Wolf.

And then there is this, from another blog:


Jack Cafferty on CNN made a very astute observation today, the
5th day following Hurricane Katrina. He noted that Congress, during all of the Terri Schiavo ridiculousness, held a special session during Easter recess specifically for the purpose of passing the infamous Terri Schiavo law,
one of the few (only?) laws in the country ever to apply to a single
person. Yet here we are, five days after Katrina, with tens of
thousands of (to point out the obvious) largely African American
Katrina refugees piled up in the Superdome and Congress is still on
vacation? They can't even drop water and sandwiches to these starving, dehydrated, dying people? While I still stand by the notions that 1) there was ample warning for this disaster and 2) that this country is better equipped as regards the resources to deal with a natural disaster of this magnitude than third world countries, I think its pretty obvious that leadership seems woefully absent here.

For those who might doubt this notion, I'd note that the first load of folks delivered to Houston from New Orleans was handled not by any government or military unit, but by 20 year old Jabbar Gibson who managed to steal a school bus and transport a load of folks to safety.

Even if they manage to reconvene early, it should have never taken this long to mobilize the political powers that be in a scenario such as this. Unbelievable.

Yes it is unbelievable. Many of us are just sitting back trying to figure out how we got to this point as a country.

And I have tried to avoid the race card in this discussion, but when I see my people suffering, when I see the media coverage that seems to paint New Orleans as, "Niggers gone wild," I have to stand up and pay attention. And if you think I am exaggerating, read this post from Tony Pierce.

Donate Now
I just got another screed from Jay Tea of Wizbang about how Wizbang is running raffles to help the victims. Well it started off to help Paul of Wizbang, so I don't know how much of the money is going into victims pockets. I suggest avoiding "Private Fundraisers," and giving directly to the sources most able to help ALL the People.

Jay's basic claim is that by criticizing the administration during the crises, that we take energy away from helping the people suffering... Sound Familiar? How about, "By criticizing the administration over Iraq, you harm the morale of our troops," or "By talking about the Valery Plame Case, you damage the investigation..." Jay... We aren't drinking the Kool Aide my man. Forget it! The time to hold those accountable for the systematic failures that led to this tragedy, IS NOW. And if not now... When? A year from now, when the pain is forgotten, and the facts convienantly swept under the rubble of the once proud cities destroyed by this? You tell me, when you and others on the Right are going to be willing to hold Bush accountable for anything? You seem to have no problem holding Clinton accountable for everything.

Update: Rogue has put together two posts, with excellent resources for helping or surviving the Hurricane.

Posted by David A at 05:23 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 1058 Words
Our National Embarrassment

I am watching CNN this morning and the video coming from New Orleans and the Hurricane Zone is horrible. People are dying. People are without food and water. People are without hope...

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (CNN) -- Thousands of people forced from their homes by Hurricane Katrina have crammed into the New Orleans convention center, where they've had no food, no water and no word on when help would come.

And people are dying.

CNN's Chris Lawrence described "many, many" bodies, inside and outside the facility on New Orleans' Riverwalk.

"There are multiple people dying at the convention center," he said. "There was an old woman, dead in a wheelchair with a blanket draped over her, pushed up against a wall. Horrible, horrible conditions.

"We saw a man who went into a seizure, literally dying right in front of us."

People were "being forced to lived like animals," Lawrence said -- surrounded by piles of trash and feces.

He said while he has seen police SWAT teams drive by in armored vehicles, no one has stopped to talk with the refugees.


I saw a video of someone's mother or Grandmother, dead in a wheelchair, pushed against a wall at the Superdome, covered with a blanket. Another grandmother complained of not having food for two days.

That people are still dying after FIVE days is a National Disgrace. This was an act of God, one that was expected and anticipated for days before hand. In fact, New Orleans has been a Hurricane Victim waiting to happen for years, so none of this should have come as a surprise to anyone...

The failure of Homeland Security to move quickly and have sufficient resources to aid the people of the Hurricane Stricken Region is yet another example of the ineptitude of the Bush Administration.

Those of you who voted for Bush with the idea that he was the best candidate to protect the Homeland, have now had your wakeup call. It does not matter the type of disaster. Had this been a terrorist attack, it is likely the same thing would have happened. At a time when the people of Luisiana needs them the most, their sons and daughters of the National Guard are far away fighting a useless war in Iraq. While Billions are wasted and even LOST in Iraq, the pumps and Levy's needed to protect one of our most beautiful and historical cities were neglected by our National Government.

Our Homeland Security appears to have learned nothing from 9/11. Police are not equipted to handle the scope of the disaster. Radios dont work. Police are taking gas from abandoned cars to fuel their cruisers. Coordination between FEMA, Homeland Security and local authorities has been a disaster. This disaster has been made 100 times worse by the incompetance of a Government that has bungled every major operation they have undertaken since first taking office five years ago.

This is NOT one Bush is going to be able to avoid responsibility for. Nor will it be one that Conservatives will be able to spin. It is a disaster of unparalleled proportions, and the responsibility for much of what has happened sits squarely at the door of this administration.

UPDATE: Jay Tea of Wizbang fame, has already posted a scathing comment to this post accussing Lefties of insensitivity to the problems on the ground in New Orleans:

"Things in the South are horrible. And while the Right side of the blogosphere is doing everything they can to help the people, the liberals are busting their asses, doing everything they can to make sure the "right" people get the blame. They'd much rather sit around and shriek in outrage, looking for someone to pin the blame on, than get off their self-indulgent asses, pry themselves away from their circle-jerk of political correctness, and actually step up and DO something about the problem themselves.

It's reminiscent of the illegal alien situation. The problem must be solved PERFECTLY, with no one getting their feelings bruised, or absolutely nothing at all can be done.

And in both cases, the liberals don't seem to mind if dozens, or thousands, or millions of people continue to suffer and die, as long as the liberals can make goddamned sure that they have plenty of bodies to lay at the Right's feet. In fact, for some, the more the merrier.

I'm putting my money where my mouth is, David. I'm helping Kevin coordinate our own relief efforts -- and it's not just because one of our own is one of those in trouble, and happens to be positioned to do some good. Where the FUCK is the massive movement from the Left to help those people?

On second thought, maybe it is best if you folks just stay out of the way while we do the real work. I'm trying to recall the last time liberals got involved in something serious and didn't majorly fuck it up. So keep on playing your little masturbatory political games -- we've got REAL work to do."

Perhaps Jay needs to look around the Liberal Side of the blogsphere before he makes such accusations:

In Search of Utopia

Patridiot Watch


The Rogue Angel


Crooks and Liars

Rox Populi

Billmon

Oliver Willis


Comments from Left Field

Dan Gillmor


Loaded Mouth

Ratboy's Anvil


The Progressive Blog Alliance

Ezra Klein

And that took me all of 30 seconds and was less than 1% of my Leftie Blogroll. Jay... Piss off. Because you Right Wingers want to stick your heads up your ass and pretend that this was a simple act of God, that NO ONE is responsible for, does not mean we should do it. It is time someone called this administration to accounts for the ridiculous policy and budgetary decisions that have led to so many deaths in the South.

You and your ilk would prefer to ignore the issue of responsibility, not just because the responsibility falls at the door of the President you voted for, but because YOU are partially responsible. You voted for this man, knowing well his record. YOU pushed his credentials for protecting the country. YOU supported a WAR that has drained the country of just the resources needed to address this kind of disaster. Yes Jay, you and everyone else who supported Bush, share responsibility. So YES, you should be working hard to help the people affected. It is the decent thing to do, the right thing to do. When it is over, six months or a year from now, you can stop working. We will join you in the effort to help those in need. But we will condemn the people who are responsible, AND we will hold them accountable, whether you chose to or not. And you are part of those who we will hold responsible.

If that hurts your feelings or embarrasses you, perhaps it should. Perhaps the time has come for ALL of you to step back, get off your own high horses and realize that you made a HORRIBLE mistake. One that today is affecting tens of thousands of Americans, including one of your own. One who pooh poohed Global Warming, which may have contributed to this disaster, and who supported the very war that took the Louisiana National Guard away from home at a time when they are desperately needed. With thousands missing, and an unknown number dead, I wonder how many of those troopers can concentrate on fighting your war right now, while the status of their own families are in doubt.


That is being an American.

Oh and Jay, while you are ranting about Liberals taking political advantage of the dissaster, perhaps you should read this Op/Ed from your own hometown and VERY CONSERVATIVE newspaper:

"Katrina already is measured as one of the worst storms in American history. And yet, President Bush decided that his plans to commemorate the 60th anniversary of VJ Day with a speech were more pressing than responding to the carnage.

A better leader would have flown straight to the disaster zone and announced the immediate mobilization of every available resource to rescue the stranded, find and bury the dead, and keep the survivors fed, clothed, sheltered and free of disease."


Posted by David A at 12:16 PM | Comments (16) | TrackBack (2) | 1375 Words
August 31, 2005
Yes, I'll say it: Bush is to blame

[Crossposted from Loaded Mouth]

I know some people might find this hard to believe, but I've been trying not to criticize Bush in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. This is probably the worst natural disaster in the history of this country, and I don't want to contribute to the cause of any divisions in a time of national crisis.

However, there are lessons to be learned here. And since Bush and his ilk only seem to listen to dollar signs, I'll explain this in simple financial terms: When does $3.9 million actually equal billions of dollars? When you should have spent $20 million to fix the levees.

The cleanup and recovery efforts for Hurricane Katrina are going to skyrocket into the billions, but it didn't have to be this way. The catastrophe that happened to New Orleans could have been avoided if the city was properly protected by a system of levees that required federal funding to be fixed. Let us not forgot that Katrina did not cause the massive amounts of flooding we now see in New Orleans; this was caused by the failure of levees after the storm had passed. Why did these levees fail? Because Bush grossly underfunded the Army Corps of Engineers projects needed to repair them. Attytodd has used Lexis/Nexis to dig up some articles about the levee projects. Here's what he found in an article from 2/16/04 in the New Orleans CityBusiness:

The $750 million Lake Pontchartrain and Vicinity Hurricane Protection project is another major Corps project, which remains about 20% incomplete due to lack of funds, said Al Naomi, project manager. That project consists of building up levees and protection for pumping stations on the east bank of the Mississippi River in Orleans, St. Bernard, St. Charles and Jefferson parishes.

The Lake Pontchartrain project is slated to receive $3.9 million in the president's 2005 budget. Naomi said about $20 million is needed.

"The longer we wait without funding, the more we sink," he said. "I've got at least six levee construction contracts that need to be done to raise the levee protection back to where it should be (because of settling). Right now I owe my contractors about $5 million. And we're going to have to pay them interest."


The Attytodd piece is a must-read, and it has much more detail into how much the funding was undercut and why. For the sake of brevity, I'll sum it up: The levee projects were started and fully funded while Clinton was in office, but ever since Bush took office, he has cut taxes spent boatloads of money on the Iraq war.

So under the pretense of protecting American lives and cities, the funding of the Iraq war has led to the destruction of New Orleans and who knows how many deaths. Hundreds? Thousands? Bush said he would protect us from a dirty bomb, and as a result we got a dirty flood and an unwinnable war of questionable intentions.

The irony doesn't stop there, given the fact that the cost-cutting measures Bush imposed on the homeland to fund his billions in war spending now mean that we'll have to spend billions to clean up a tragic mess that could have been avoided.

Disgusting. Simply disgusting. Bush and his war buddies walk away with billions in cash because of this war, yet not a dime could be spared to fix the levees of New Orleans. Lives, homes, culture, and history all destroyed, all washed away... Does this man have respect for anything? Will he take responsibility for anything? But, more importantly, have the Republicans finally learned that tax cuts and wars aren't always a good thing, and that the homeland needs to be protected and serviced by a sound infrastructure before we can think about doling money out to the richest among us?

[Big hattip: Chrissy]

Posted by Tas at 11:43 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack (1) | 644 Words
Talking Loud and Saying Nothing...

Bush is well known for his soaring rhetoric, especially when it comes to Iraq. It is a conflict born out or rhetoric, and indeed sustained by it. But the rhetoric has begun to ring hollow with a majority of the American public, and statements comparing Bush's War on Terror with the greatest conflict of the last century is well.... Ridiculous!

From Slate:

Accept for a moment the argument that Iraq is but one theater in a global war on terrorism. Overlook that, to the degree this is true, it's because Bush's invasion of Iraq and his many miscalculations afterward helped make it so. Even so, it would be an enormous leap to claim that the war in Iraq or the broader war on terror is the political, strategic, or moral equivalent of World War II.

Al-Qaida or its sundry offshoots could crash many more airplanes, wreck many more buildings, and bomb many more subways and the magnitude of their power, and the urgency of their threat, would still fall far short of that posed by Nazi Germany. The panzers of the Wehrmacht rolled across the plains of Europe, toppling governments with ease, imposing totalitarian regimes, and killing millions in their wake. This was a war of civilization on a level that today's war however you might define it doesn't begin to approach.

But let's say that the two wars World War II and Iraq (or the broader war on terrorism) are comparable, that their stakes are even remotely as high. Then why is President Bush fighting this war so tentatively?

From December 1941 to August 1945 the attack on Pearl Harbor until the declaration of Allied victory the United States manufactured 88,430 tanks and 274,941 combat aircraft. Yet in the two years after the invasion of Iraq, much less the four years since the attack on the World Trade Center, the Bush administration has not built enough armor platings to protect our soldiers' jeeps from roadside bombs.

To fund World War II, the United States drastically expanded and raised taxes. (At the start of the war, just 4 million Americans had to pay income tax; by its end, 43 million did.) Beyond that, 85 million Americans—half the population at the time—answered the call to buy War Bonds, $185 billion worth. Food was rationed, scrap metal was donated, the entire country was on a war footing. By contrast, President Bush has asked the citizenry for no sacrifice, no campaigns of national purpose, to fight or fund the wars in Iraq or Afghanistan. In fact, he has proudly cut taxes, heaving the hundreds of billions of dollars in war costs on top of the already swelling national debt.

If this war's stakes are comparable to World War II's, the entire nation should be enlisted in its cause not necessarily to fight in it, but at least to pay for it. And if President Bush is not willing to call for some sort of national sacrifice, he cannot expect anyone to believe the stakes are really high.

Bush has not asked the American public to sacrifice for the war in Iraq. If he had, I doubt it would have taken this long for the American Public to become fed up with it. This disorganized, disjointed conflict, in which our young men and women are sent to die in a meatgrinder of RPG's and Roadside Bombs, has been a disaster from it's inception.

And despite claims to the contrary, the shortage in available Guard Units due to the war, has no doubt had an impact on the ability to rapidly respond the victims of Katrina. Would anyone argue that we are one disaster away from a tragedy of ungodly proportions. This administration is an undeclared National Disaster. We put a drunken Frat Boy in the highest office in the land, fronted and propped up by an old boy network and a political hack in Karl Rove, and NOW... NOW with thousands dead in Iraq, New Orleans wiped off the map,fiscal problems that would make The Lemon Drop Kid blush, political scandals ranging from Gay Hookers in the Press Room to Outing CIA agents for revenge, only NOW do we start looking at the five year train wreck and international embarrassment that this administration is...

It is beyond belief to me, that an entire Nation, a nation with the backbone of heroes, could be so cowed by 9/11, that we allowed this man to waltz back into the White House on an Agenda of "Fear All the Time." That Bush is President for three more years, means that the opportunities to continue to squander this nations assets, destroy our international esteem, and generally continue to FUBAR everything in sight, is a reality that we all must face, and all must take responsibility for. My ONLY hope is that in the Mid Term elections, The American people wake up and realize that the only way to apply some sanity to an America on the brink, is to throw those out, Republican and Democrat, who have collaborated with this government. Then there is a long path to getting our house back in order, and I am afraid it will be a few more years yet, before we can start the real cleaning...

In the mean time, The President continues his "vacation," while 10's of thousands of Americans in Louisiana and Alabama wonder how they are going to live now that they have no job or place to live....

Posted by David A at 10:57 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | 912 Words
Help for the Victims of Katrina

Just Do it!
I remember in 1994 when the Northridge quake pretty much trashed Chatsworth, California. I remember the sense of helplessness. I remember being homeless. I remember feeling powerless. I remember the sense of Great Pain and Loss, and I have never forgotten it.

Donate Now
We can all help in this case. The pictures of what happened in New Orleans and Alabama are heartbreaking. There are thousands of people, tens of thousands of people that are homeless, without food, clean water and the basic necessities.

Many of them are also out of work, their very lives turned upside down by this tragedy.

I remember something my mother used to say often when I was a child and she witnessed some particular tragedy... "There by the Grace of God, goes I." And it is true. Any of us, at any time can have our world turned upside down by a similar tragedy, and we are powerless to prevent it.

We all need to think about that for a bit, and regardless of our personal circumstances, do whatever we can to help our fellow Americans. Do what you can... Just do it!

Posted by David A at 07:13 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 190 Words
Some Katrina Stuff

I am watching CNN right now, and the amount of devastation in New Orleans is nothing less than incredible. They have been talking about looting and gang activity. I noticed that most of the images we are seeing are of African Americans looting.

Sorry, but I have no patience for this kind of shit. Looters should be dealt with as harshly as possible, regardless of their race.
There is super print coverage of the Hurricane and it's aftermath here.

Posted by David A at 01:20 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0) | 81 Words
August 29, 2005
Is Katrina powered in part by Global Warming?

This article from Time Magazine certainly suggest that it's a possibility.

The current administration has all but pooh poohed Global Warming as an issue, even going so far as to have a "ringer," within the administration who "doctored," scientific reports to minimize the impact indicated by the reports. Paul over at Wizbang has written a couple of times on the "myth," of global warming. I believe he lives in Louisiana, I wonder how he is feeling about it about right now...

Posted by David A at 03:10 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack (1) | 83 Words
New Orleans

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Tipitina's bust
Like a Buddha belly charm
Rub Longhair for Luck

Zencomix

Posted by Doogntoon at 11:46 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0) | 12 Words
 
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