Saturday, September 03, 2005

How to Help Katrina Survivors

Well, this probably doesn't help, although there's a lot of it going around. Rogers Cadenhead, who at least made fundraising his second Katrina topic (more than some can say) is among many who deny trying to make political hay from the disaster while doing so vigorously. Here's his comment in response to being accused being among those who would rather complain than solve a problem:

Part of being a grown-up is taking responsibility. President Bush ran on a re-election campaign that heavily emphasized he would make the country safer from disaster than his opponent.

Will anyone in his administration take responsibility for failing to do that this week?

Just once, I'd like to see someone in the Bush White House say directly "I made a mistake," rather than the passive statement "mistakes were made."

The presidency has come a long way since "the buck stops here" leadership of Harry S Truman. Most of it downhill.


I should say I don't believe Rogers would rather complain than solve a problem, and he's done more than many to help Katrina survivors, but I guess I don't see how anyone is helped by Bush saying one thing or another. Then again, if it helps liberals chill the f%ck out while we sort out this disaster then by all means, George, hit them with an apology. We can spend all of 2006 pointing fingers for all I care, but let's keep our eyes on the ball for now.

7 comments:

Rogers said...

I don't know see you avoid politics in response to an utter breakdown of local, state, and federal government that costs numerous lives. It's a political failure.

I think it's possible to simultaneously promote relief efforts and talk about what a start-to-end human-made disaster this became after Katrina hit. If something like this happened in Japan, there'd be government officials committing hara-kiri for a failure of such magnitude.

Uncle Mikey said...

It's not a political failure, it's a natural disaster that covered a huge area and is taking up enormous manpower and resources to make right. Not being satisfied with the results of such an enormous effort is your prerogative, but blaming the people farthest from the action is ridiculous and counterproductive.

This particular disaster has been anticipated for decades, and if you're going to blame one president for not making New Orleans ready to deal with it, blame them all. Or how about Congress? Or the New York Times.

Better still, blame the state of Louisiana (Mississippi had their shit together by comparison) or the City of New Orleans. Bush called the Governor of Louisiana and made her evactuate the city, then the Mayor of NO lost it when a chunk of his police and rescue force disappears and forgot to use the city buses to evacuate, the shift from rescue effort to martial law when people go nuts in the streets, reducing rescue efforts further. Which part of that is Bush's fault again?

No one is satisfied with the way things are going. The difference is, you think blaming someone is helpful. I'm telling you it's not - making sure it goes right next time is. If you insist on pointing fingers, at least wait long enough to have a chance of being accurate about it. In the mean time, take a page from Bill Clinton and chill out on the pointless criticism.

Rogers said...

When a foreseeable disaster occurs and our governments (note the "s") are unprepared to deal with it, that's a political failure. All the way up the ladder, from the local officials in New Orleans to the parish officials in southeast Louisiana to the state officials in Baton Rouge to the Congressional delegation in Louisiana to FEMA to the Department of Homeland Security to the DHS secretary Michael Chertoff to George Bush, who now has the distinction of being the first president to lose a major American city on his watch.

People who say we shouldn't start the blame game seem to have no problem pointing fingers at state and local officials.

If you get a chance, watch Meet the Press when it is rebroadcast in the middle of the night tonight by NBC.

Nearly four years after 9/11, we've failed to provide the infrastructure necessary to protect this country and preserve order in the wake of a catastrophic disaster on one of our cities. Things need to change as urgently as possible.

Uncle Mikey said...

I agree that changes are necessary, but too many are using this disaster as a political chess piece. I don't think you're one of them, exactly, and to the degree that you are I would probably do the same were the ideologies reversed, but I still think Clinton has the right idea. CNN and MSNBC, on the other hand, are revelling in the political bloodbath, and I think it's gross and not helpful.

Uncle Mikey said...

And you're still a poopweiner, no matter what you say. So there.

Rogers said...

I don't want to politicize this as much as I want to wake up to good news in the paper. This is nightmareland.

Not only that, North Texas was going to beat LSU yesterday.

Anonymous said...

Is that his design in settling here?
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