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Friday, September 9, 2005

Reaction pours in

"FEMA director Michael Brown relieved of hurricane responsibilities" -- News headline

Comments (20)

Waiting for Nagel and Blanco to fire themselves.

still waiting.
still waiting...
still waiting...
still waiting...
still waiting...
still waiting...
still waiting...


I guess being democrat means never having to say you're accountable.

Rob: There's a comments policy. Please do check it out. One new thread per day. Thanks.

On your point, you'll be waiting a long time, I think. The backlash you're smelling isn't against the local bozos. It's against the Big Bozo.

Also on the point, the local bozos had their "local" wiped out. The Big Bozo was busily schmoozing at his leisure. Minor difference.

Memo from Karl Rove to Rob Kremer:
1. The “still waiting” thing over and over again was brilliant. Repetition is how we convinced most Fox News viewers that Saddam was behind 9/11.
2. Diverting the spotlight somewhere else to the local officials was also very, very good. It’s nice to see you following the script.
3. Okay, the Love Story “never having to say you're sorry” bit is not working. First, it’s what we call in the business a “dated reference.” Plus, this President has a real problem saying sorry so why go there? Being George W. means never having to say you’re sorry? Finally, the Love Story book was written by Erich Segal, then an assistant professor at Yale. At a time when the President is turning in such low marks, the last thing we want to do is bring up Yale.
Thanks, and we’re watching you,
Karl Rove

Let me try to provide a little comfort to the distressed. Don't panic! The spin machine is being cranked up to overdrive by Uncle Karl and large batches of happy-news are in the pipeline from Karen Hughes for foreign consumption. The Oregonian is writing more helpful headlines every day, Halliburton is already making money on the clean-up and Tom Delay is hard at work making sure even more of the right people will get their share of the contacts. Things will be back to normal in no time and people will stop listening to old meanies like Jack when they say bad things about the President. So relax. Stay in your homes. And remember this above all: your tax breaks are safe. There, I hope that helps.

I loved the Kennedy shot! Nice caption.

While I think Nagin could be guilty enough to resign, I think that the only point it would serve is to show accountability, but not to help the recovery. I doubt there's a deputy mayor or someone lying around who would lead better right now. In Brown's case, getting a new leader in really does help the situation immediately.

Rob Kremer - the truth about state and local accountability is beginning to trickle out:


Regarding Rob's point:

1. The local govenor and mayor were clearly incompetent. That does not directly threaten us in Oregon. The people of their state should deal with them harshly. The governor and mayor do not provide an excuse for FEMA's failures, however. There are no excuses.

2. FEMA was incompetent. Bush appointed a politial hack to head FEMA. That does threaten us in Oregon. When some trouble hits Oregon, there is no reason to think that FEMA will be able to handle it. Bush owes the country a competent administrator for FEMA.

3. The Coast Guard and Air Force rescue teams were outstanding. Brave and competent.


Sorry, I refuse to read the paper of a man who believes himself to be the second coming of Christ, and who provides Kim Jong Il with arms.

But maybe that's just me...

Uh, Rob, Mayor Ray Nagin of New Orleans is a donor to George W. Bush, endorsed GOP gubernatorial nominee Bobby Jindal over Kathleen Blanco, and is a former corporate executive.

Yes, technically, he recently changed his registration to Democrat - but that's because it's not possible to win in New Orleans any other way.

In all other ways, he's a Republican. I know it's hard to tell - being black and all - but facts are facts.

Time to turn off the Fox News.

So many thoughts regarding Rob and Scott's comments. Went over my 150 words. Complete thoughts on my own blog.

With respect to Chris Snethen's thoughts, I offer the following words attributed to Jason van Steenwyk, "a Florida Army National Guardsman who has been mobilized six times for hurricane relief":

"The federal government pretty much met its standard time lines, but the volume of support provided during the 72-96 hour was unprecedented. The federal response here was faster than Hugo, faster than Andrew, faster than Iniki, faster than Francine and Jeanne."


Due to a derailment in the federal witchhunt, the state and local accountability train is right on time.

Oh, and Guardsman van Steenwyk has no known ties to Haliburton.

If Nagel was still a Republican, then the left would be screaming for his head, and you know it.

I’m sure the defense of this President’s laser-like focus on Katrina will continue and I love the 72-hour starting point. Unfortunately comparing this to other hurricanes doesn’t factor in the New Orleans levee scenario which the President was either unaware of or lying about. I also enjoyed Bill Kristol’s admission that the Clinton 16-hour workday approach might have worked better than President Bush’s detached vacation-mode delegation of responsibility, especially when you’re delegating to a bunch of political cronies who have no clue how to do their jobs. It’s bad when your beloved hero’s main job skill is explaining what went wrong, but the White House has learned from Katrina. They’re now blaming what went wrong in Iraq on the mayor of Bagdhad. New Orleans has been described as a bowl in the ground, and Katrina proved the Bush administration can’t tell its ass from a bowl in the ground.

The entire disaster relief effort appears to be a disaster itself...local, state, and federal. There is plenty of blame aka "accountability" to go around once the crisis is over.

What kills me is the politics of it all. Why is everything political? This whole finger pointing game on both sides is not helping anything. Politics is so devisive, and I don't think it's helping our country at all, and it is certainly not helping in the crisis.

LOVE this blog, by the way!!! I'd love to see you all at a party together....

The question isn't who to blame, the question is whether the responses of various levels of government were adequate, and the extent to which the competence will affect future crises.

Frankly, the response of the mayor and governor really have no bearing on future disasters unless those disasters also occur in LA.

What is of big concern is that the Federal Government, defined as it is by 9/11, was still completely unable to respond to a predictable disaster in a reasonable way.

Now we have to ask, why is that? If FEMA is poorly managed, what about the other government agencies? If major disaster relief is unavailable for days after a predictable natural disaster, how long will it take to arrive at an unpredictable terrorist attack? How can the federal government function this poorly?

These questions trump the matter of who's to blame, and they're questions that the President is chiefly qualified to answer. The Mayor just doesn't have a thing to do with it.

If we look at government, local, county, state, federal we can find poor management, weak leadership and inefficiencies on every corner. We all accept it because we don't know how to change it and make jokes about government ("Good enough for government work").

Look at Multnomah County. It's a mess! Look at the state. What a huge inefficient organization that is. I work with them and I know first hand. They are slow and disorganized, many employees are apathetic because of the quagmire they work in, staff hide behind their job descriptions and don't know anything about other departments or agencies, and money is squandered because there is no control. But for some reason, we expect government to all of a sudden be efficient and organized and prompt when we have a disaster. If we can't get our government to run an efficient school district, how can we expect it to handle a disaster of epic proportions?

Government needs vast reform. Until then, we are doomed when the next disaster hits. Sad, but true.

Bah, government does lots of things well. It can do this well too, and it has in the past.


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