Monday, September 05, 2005

Passing the Buck 2

But, let's be honest about it- everybody screwed up in regards to New Orleans. It's astounding to me that, four years after 9-11, we apparently have no plan for helping a major US city in an emergency situation. But, it's not as if Clinton, that blithely arrogant President Belushi, was concerned about the levees either. I think what's so disturbing about this is the fact that seemingly everyone who's ever looked into it has known that this could happen for the last hundred or so years. But, it's apparently been a very low priority for the government, both parties, hell even the core of engineers.

And race, our nation's Achiles heel, eventually has to enter into it. Because, clearly we have known for decades that this very poor, largely African-American part of the country was very likely to be wiped out in the event of a hurricane. But, clearly nobody had any real plan of what to do in that event, or even felt a plan was necessary. It's as if they knew it would likely be quite tragic, but underestimated the public response to that tragedy. And that's particuarly chilling.


Becky said...

This is why my roommates and I are putting together an earthquake survival kit. Because if this is any indication of the government's readiness to respond to a disaster, I'd say we're all pretty much fucked. Although, as my roommate said, "it's all rich white people around here, so we'll probably get help pretty quick."

focalelement said...

Hey Man

Long time no chat, I thought that you might enjoy checking out this article.


Rufus said...

Hey, good to see you hanging around, Lee!

It's an interesting article. I think I'm pretty much between the left and the right about this one though. I think a lot of people are responsible for this massive screw up, including Mayor Nagin. The pictures of that fleet of abandonned buses, which could have (and were intended to) been used to transport people to safety, are damining. Like I said, it seems that everyone who has tried to prepare for this scenario has screwed up, tragically.

That said, I am troubled by the tendency of conservatives to condemn every criticism of the President as "partisan" or "venemous" (to quote another recent column). The President, if anybody, has a responsibility to handle situations like this as best he can. Of course, he probably couldn't have saved everyone in NO, but he fell far short of what he could have done. And, conservatives, if anyone, should demand accountability and personal responsibility from him. He's the President, after all. And, there's a difference between being fair about the blame (which your linked article attempts) and Mandarinism, which sadly, is the default setting for many writers these days.

Again, thanks for stopping by.

Rufus said...

Becky, I honestly think your church has had the right idea about these things for a long time. It's always good to be prepared, no matter where you live.