NC Media Watch

A quest for reason and accuracy in letters to the editor, guest editorials and other issues of interest to the citizens of Western Nevada County.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Blame Game Update: Poisoned question, misplaced blame

Peggy Baldwin wants to know “What happened in New Orleans?”, September 9, 2005
Mr. President I would like a explanation for why water, food and personnel could not have been air dropped on the Superdome and Convention Center in New Orleans? Is there some logistic I don't understand? With all our military and technical skill, why wasn't emergency relief employed earlier than four days?
Madam you are looking in the wrong place, for answers. The Red Cross and Salvation Army we prepared to give the people food and water, but the STATE Homeland Security, the former emergency response agency, refused to allow them entry to the Superdome and Convention Center as both have reported on TV. The responsible state agency did not want, more people attracted to this facility. The President flew to the area and asked Governor Blanco to Federalize the rescue effort, and she refused.
What this disaster reveals to me is that policy and ideology are not a substitute for compassion and caring for the common people.
Madam, you are right. Mayor Nagin waited until 24 hours before the storm hit to issue a mandatory evacuation order, and then abandoned his city evacuation plan. This after President Bush called 48 hours before the storm, Max Mayfield Director of the National Hurricane Center, called Nagin and Blanco 72 hours and personally explained the danger, requesting full evacuation. Yet, Nagin and Blanco, like deer in the headlights, could not make critical decisions which could have saved lives.

Or, in one case, a bad decision by refusing to let the Red Cross and Salvation Army to bring critical supplies to those in need, and you are blaming President Bush.

After a second read of your letter, it appears your real goal was to damage President Bush, not seeking answers. The facts were out there, you just refused to see them.

UPDATE: Here is a view from a long time resident of New Orleans on who is responsible.

Click here for a private e-mail comment. For public comment select comments below.


Blogger Sherry said...

It's good to know that SHOULD a situation like, say, gas stations blowing up in Grass Valley, (maybe extending to other counties, perhaps around the state), that ANY HELP that would be necessary in the immediate aftermath, (perhaps raging forest fires), of such an event CAN BE LEFT ON HOLD by our local "mayor", or perhaps, "supervisor" or EVEN Arnold if he decided, (or couldn't, wouldn't, didn't) on "appropriate action" perhaps being NO ACTION. It's NOT GOOD ENOUGH that supporters cry "potential foul" if Bush, as president, SHOULD DEMAND that an AGENCY---specificaly HOMELAND SECURITY---do it's job, AND even as John Q might feel the agency had "overstepped". Wasn't the "lack" of protection, (no matter how the catastrophe was mitigated away by loyal Bushists), that ALLOWED for 9-11, SEEN as a complete letting down of our "guard"? You talk about "what we've learned" from Katrina, AS YOU completely IGNORE what we were SUPPOSED to have "learned" from 9-11. THIS ADMINISTRATION, (or any other), cannot IGNORE the realities. Yes, PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY inasmuch as PEOPLE can feed and water themselves for a few days IS IMPORTANT, HOWEVER, that "acknowledging" and that "complying" WILL NEVER SAVE (and couldn't have saved) those that CAN'T/COULDN'T GET AWAY from THE KIND of devastation Katrina delivered. There is no, "HOMELAND SECURITY". All that remains, including taking care of the dead, is a "HOMELAND CLEANUP CREW"---and THAT only thrown together WHEN it becomes obvious that "it's needed". Maybe we should quit spending horrendous amounts of money on SECURITY when, as evidenced by 9-11 and Katrina---there IS NO SUCH AGENCY. IF we intend to just KEEP PRINTING MORE MONEY as the answer, then SEND IT TO THE LOCAL SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT! Maybe "Protect and Serve" will go back on the sides of their car doors, then, when they DON'T, the "blame game" you are so fearful of will NEVER leave town. Corruption and greed can reign supreme, locally, and as it was meant to be---where John Q might, if he's isolated himself enough, have a chance of really protecting HIMSELF---WHERE SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST is more important than SURVIVAL OF THE RICHEST.

I think (you're) right, Bush is bent on founding consumerism as our national religion---and just when the atheists THOUGHT he was trying to force his god down their throats!

Power to the people---er, "rich" people just doesn't have the same "ring" to it, does it?

Fri Sep 09, 08:18:00 AM PDT  
Blogger Frederic Christie said...

Yes, Russ, the government, both federal and national, has been refusing aid from quite a few countries for quite a few reasons, and even now can't coordinate aid workers. But your commentary ignores two points: 1) If this was a terror attack, we wouldn't be having this discussion. 2) Your repeated arguments that everybody but the kitchen sink screwed up prove NOTHING about whether Bush is part of that crew or not. Indeed, by now you've conceded that, irrespective of the reasoning, Bush cut levee money in a major hurricane year.

Ceterus paribus, our blame should lie on the federal government. Why? If a local or state government is struggling, current decisions that the courts think are constitutional allow a disaster agency called FEMA to intervene.

Fri Sep 09, 09:48:00 AM PDT  

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