Sunday, September 04, 2005

Who is responsible?

The angry left is desperately trying to blame President Bush and FEMA for the slow response to the problem in New Orleans.

Update 9/5: What advance notice did the Governor and the Mayor have?

On June 3, 2004 an IEM Team to Develop Catastrophic Hurricane Disaster Plan for New Orleans & Southeast Louisiana involved James Lee Witt Associates. Make note of that name, because we will see James Lee Witt later

December 21, 2004 the Louisiana Board of Regents received the Assessment and Remediation of Public Health Impacts Due to Hurricanes and Major Flooding Events which reported

The 2004 Hurricane Pam Catastrophic Hurricane Planning Exercise demonstrated the strong need for a scientific basis for casualty estimates. This scenario-based exercise was constructed around the scenario of a strong Category 3 hurricane striking New Orleans, inundating Orleans Parish and major portions of surrounding parishes. The contractor creating the exercise developed casualty estimates for the NOAA-provided storm surge conditions. Their initial estimate was well over 80,000 fatalities. When this was presented to FEMA and state and local emergency managers during a pre-exercise development briefing, it was met with much skepticism and disbelief. Based on complaints from these groups, the figure was reduced to something on the order of 60,000,
That is a fantastic way to plan for problems. If the estimates show more damage than you are prepared to accept, lower the estimates.
which was still highly controversial.
They certainly had a lot of plans. Did they follow them?

Update 9/5: As NOLA.com reported 8/28 10:48 am a mandatory evacuation was ordered Sunday for New Orleans by Mayor Ray Nagin. Acknowledging that large numbers of people, many of them stranded tourists, would be unable to leave, the city set up 10 places of last resort for people to go, including the Superdome.
As JunkYardDog shows, the New Orleans school system owns 205 buses, and elsewhere we learned there were 364 buses owned by the New Orleans public transit. Why did the Mayor not make use of these buses to send people from the Superdome (and elsewhere) to Houston, or any other major city?
The mayor called the order unprecedented and said anyone who could leave the city should. He exempted hotels from the evacuation order because airlines had already cancelled all flights.
Why exempt the hotels? Was it ok for the tourists to die, but not New Orlenas residents, or did he deliver them supplies of water and food so they could survive in the hotels?
"We are facing a storm that most of us have long feared," Nagin said. The storm surge most likely could topple the city's levee system, which protect it from surrounding waters of Lake Pontchartrain, the Mississippi River and marshes, the mayor said. The bowl-shaped city must pump water out during normal times, and the hurricane threatened pump power.... He told those who had to move to the Superdome to come with enough food for several days and with blankets. He said it will be a very uncomfortable place and encouraged everybody who could to get out.
Since he anticipated flooding, which would mean power failures, loss of water pressure, and hence inability to flush the toilets, did he provide Port-a-poties?
What is FEMA's responsibility in the City of New Orleans Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan? As I read the document:
  • The ATO shall either utilize materials prepared by other agencies such as the Louisiana Office of Emergency Preparedness, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), or shall develop materials directed at the specific needs or concerns of our local population.
  • These sites shall be established at geographically strategic sites, providing all affected citizens with access to available programs, and shall provide representatives from numerous federal, state, local, and private relief agencies. Locations of the centers, as well as information on FEMA's teleregistration program, shall be made known via ESF?14, Public Information, and all other available information outlets
  • At the briefing, public officials shall be oriented on available assistance and procedures, and shall receive "Notice Of Interest" forms to be filed with state and federal officials. Subsequent "Project Applications" shall be filed with FEMA for further processing. State and federal authorities will evaluate the project applications and determine justification for assistance.
  • Applications for LOEP/FEMA courses will be submitted to the Director, Office of Emergency Preparedness for approval and submittal to LOEP.
  • The Director of the Office of Emergency Preparedness shall endeavor to take full advantage of courses offered by the Louisiana Office of Emergency Preparedness (LOEP), the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Louisiana Emergency Preparedness Association (LEPA) and other agencies, as well as conferences, seminars and workshops that may from time to time be available, most notably state hurricane conferences and workshops and the National Hurricane Conference.
On August 26, the Governor declared a State of Emergency. I could not locate their "Emergency Response And Recovery Program" on their web site but her declaration does put the response under the "command of the director of the state office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness"

On August 28, she sent a letter to George Bush requesting a declaration of a major disaster, which George Bush did on 8/29 The press report for that is dated 8/27 and it said the aid was to begin on 8/26. It is a little unclear exactly what date to assign it, but Bush certainly acted before the storm hit.

She also said that she had directed execution of the State Emergency Plan
Which has two references to FEMA:
  1. Alert FEMA of the situation and advise that the State may need Federal assistance.
  2. Request FEMA send representatives to coordinate and prepare for possible deployment of the Advance Emergency Response Team.
, she asked for Hazard Mitigation for eligible applicants that have a FEMA Approved Local Hazard Mitigation Plan, and asked for some more monetary funding, and help with debris removal. She did not authorize active duty military, reserves, or National Guard from other states.

She issued a number of executive orders which recognize that "under the provisions of Louisiana Homeland Security and Emergency Assistance and Disaster Act, and R.S. 29:724 in particular, the governor (not the President) is responsible for meeting the dangers to the state and people presented by emergencies or disasters"None of which authorizes active duty military, reserves, or National Guard from other states.

On 9/2 she said she "previously requested significant federal support to include: an additional 40,000 troops; trailers of water, ice and food; commercial buses; base camps; staging areas; amphibious personnel carriers; deployable morgues; urban search and rescue teams; airlift; temporary housing; and communications systems." but I find no indication of that request on their website, but in this letter she did request the return of her National Guard that are in Iraq (which obviously would take some amount of time), but she did request a number of other items, which arrived the same day.

WaPo reported on 9/3 that Shortly before midnight Friday, the Bush administration sent her a proposed legal memorandum asking her to request a federal takeover of the evacuation of New Orleans, a source within the state's emergency operations center said Saturday.

The administration sought unified control over all local police and state National Guard units reporting to the governor. Louisiana officials rejected the request after talks throughout the night, concerned that such a move would be comparable to a federal declaration of martial law. Some officials in the state suspected a political motive behind the request. "Quite frankly, if they'd been able to pull off taking it away from the locals, they then could have blamed everything on the locals," said the source, who does not have the authority to speak publicly.

A senior administration official said that Bush has clear legal authority to federalize National Guard units to quell civil disturbances under the Insurrection Act and will continue to try to unify the chains of command that are split among the president, the Louisiana governor and the New Orleans mayor.

Louisiana did not reach out to a multi-state mutual aid compact for assistance until Wednesday, three state and federal officials said. As of Saturday, Blanco still had not declared a state of emergency, the senior Bush official said.

"The federal government stands ready to work with state and local officials to secure New Orleans and the state of Louisiana," White House spokesman Dan Bartlett said. "The president will not let any form of bureaucracy get in the way of protecting the citizens of Louisiana."

Blanco made two moves Saturday that protected her independence from the federal government: She created a philanthropic fund for the state's victims and hired James Lee Witt, Federal Emergency Management Agency director in the Clinton administration, to advise her on the relief effort. Remember where we heard that name before?


Update 9/5: Commenters speculated that the appointment of James Lee Witt, the former director of FEMA, may have been an effort to prevent George Bush riding in on a white horse and stealing all her headlines and accolades for the rescue response, and that maybe he made an ill-advised suggestion to Governor Blanco to reject Bush's proposed legal memo to federalize the state and local evacuation procedures prior to Katrina's arrival? In other words the was willing to sacrifice the safety and security of Louisiana residents to cover up for her failures to protect her citizens

It seems pretty clear that Blanco was doing everything possible to avoid asking for the help that the President is now being blamed for not providing immediately after Katrina struck.

Since 1878 Posse Comitatus has prevented the the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines from operating on US soil. An exception is made for National Guard troops under the control of state governors, and I believe the governors can request military support (such as National Guard troops from other states), but they must explicitly request them.

Does anyone want the President of the United States [Democrat or Republican] to decide to deploy active duty military, reserves, or National Guard from other states without the specific request and approval of the Governor of that state?

Some are trying to blame the Bush administration for not funding the levee repair. Chicago Tribune reported The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said Thursday that a lack of funding for hurricane-protection projects around New Orleans did not contribute to the disastrous flooding that followed Hurricane Katrina.

In a telephone interview with reporters, corps officials said that although portions of the flood-protection levees remain incomplete, the levees near Lake Pontchartrain that gave way--inundating much of the city--were completed and in good condition before the hurricane.

However, they noted that the levees were designed for a Category 3 hurricane and couldn't handle the ferocious winds and raging waters from Hurricane Katrina, which was a Category 4 storm when it hit the coastline. The decision to build levees for a Category 3 hurricane was made decades ago based on a cost-benefit analysis.

"I don't see that the level of funding was really a contributing factor in this case," said Lt. Gen. Carl Strock, chief of engineers for the corps. "Had this project been fully complete, it is my opinion that based on the intensity of this storm that the flooding of the business district and the French Quarter would have still taken place."

Strock also denied that escalating costs from the war in Iraq contributed to reductions in funding for hurricane projects in Louisiana, as some critics have suggested. Records show that corps funding for the Louisiana projects has generally decreased in recent years.

Several critics, including a former head of the Corps of Engineers, suggested in a Tribune story Thursday that the flooding in New Orleans could have been less severe had the federal government fully funded projects to improve the levees and drainage in the city.

Congress in 1999 authorized the corps to conduct a $12 million study to determine how much it would cost to protect New Orleans from a Category 5 hurricane, but the study isn't scheduled to get under way until 2006. It was not clear why the study has taken so long to begin, though Congress has only provided in the range of $100,000 or $200,000 a year so far.

Al Naomi, senior project manager in the corps' New Orleans District, said it would cost as much as $2.5 billion to build such a system, which would likely include gates to block the Gulf of Mexico from Lake Pontchartrain and additional levees. If the project were fully funded and started immediately, Naomi said it could be completed in three to five years.

A project to build up the levees to withstand a Category 3 hurricane was launched in 1965 after Hurricane Betsy and was supposed to be completed in 10 years, but it remains incomplete because of a lack of funding.
If a project launched in 1965 and supposed to be completed in 10 years is still not completed, due to funding cutbacks in many administrations, hopefully no one is stupid enough to suggest that the above $2.5 billion project would make any sense at all. New Orleans should be moved, not rebuilt in place
In recent years, funding has dropped precipitously, which some officials attributed in part to the escalating costs of the Iraq war. Funding for a drainage project in New Orleans went from $69 million in 2001 to $36.5 million in the current fiscal year, while funding for such hurricane-protection projects as levees around Lake Pontchartrain declined from $10 million in 2001 to $5.7 million this year, according to figures provided by the office of Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.).

Funding for these projects has generally trended downward since at least the last years of the Clinton administration. Congressional records show that the levee work on Lake Pontchartrain received $23 million in 1998 and $16 million in 1999. It was not clear how much the drainage project received in 1998, but records show it received $75 million in 1999.

Neither the White House nor the Corps of Engineers would confirm the numbers, nor would they provide funding levels dating to previous administrations.

26 comments:

Greta (Hooah Wife) said...

Awesome post Don. I agree, it is not the President or the military's responsibility. We want to stay away from "big government." I have a feeling the refugees will take more time in the future to decide who they ote for! It is always easier to point the finger at the "big guy" after the fact andthe press loves it!

Sigmund, Carl and Alfred said...

Well done. In fact, the NO response- or lack thereof- was predictable. There was never an indication of any disaster preparedness, ongoing or otherwise.

Anonymous said...

I was wondering if James Lee Witt, the former director of FEMA, made an ill-advised suggestion to Governor Blanco to reject Bush's proposed legal memo to federalize the state and local evacuation procedures prior to Katrina's arrival?

Methinks something's afoot with James Lee Witt, being the very advisor and former director of FEMA for Governor Blanco at the most convenient timing before the Katrina disaster.

LemonJoose said...

Excellent work. The final report on the sequence of events in the decision making should really be an interesting read. It sounds like the governor of Louisiana made some really stupid decisions based on her own ego/vanity and worries about George Bush riding in on a white horse and stealing all her headlines and accolades for the rescue response.

Don Singleton said...

anonymous, you may be right, but it would just be speculation. I tried to just show what I could show to be true.

The Governor AND the mayor both did very stupid things, and did practically nothing right.

Anonymous said...

http://www.nola.com/newsflash/louisiana/index.ssf?/base/news-18/1125239940201382.xml&storylist=louisiana
http://www.publichealth.hurricane.lsu.edu/Adobe%20files%20for%20webpage/reports%20&%20meeting%20minutes/Annual%20Interim%20Report%20(Yr3)%20Narrative%20-%20%20HEF%20(2001-06)-01.pdf
http://www.ohsep.louisiana.gov/plans/EOPSupplement1a.pdf
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/chi-050901corps,1,7189346.story?coll=chi-news-hed&ctrack=1&cset=true
http://www.cityofno.com/portal.aspx?portal=46&tabid=26
http://www.gov.state.la.us/Press_Release_detail.asp?id=1009

These are the different reports you were looking for plus a couple other things like her press conference with Nagin when they said President Bush "urged" them to evacuate. Since he declared the Emergency "before" Katrina (opening up all supplies and support that she has to only "ask" for) and urged evac. Why should anyone else take the blame for the gross neglgence that took so many lifes so needlessly. Google "hurrican pam" an exercise which issued a report for them all in Dec of 2004 of this exact scenario and the responsiblities of Mayor and Gov. (mostly Nagin). All 4 most recent studies showed that appx. 22% would not or could not evacuate and the Mayor and Gov would be responsible for their safety. Nice Job, eh?

Anonymous said...

"Quite frankly, if they'd been able to pull off taking it away from the locals, they then could have blamed everything on the locals"

Whereas if the locals have control, they blame everything they do wrong on the Feds?

W. T. F?

Anonymous said...

You need to include this on your timeline:


Statement on Federal Emergency Assistance for Louisiana
Office of the Press Secretary

August 27, 2005

The President today declared an emergency exists in the State of Louisiana and ordered Federal aid to supplement state and local response efforts in the parishes located in the path of Hurricane Katrina beginning on August 26, 2005, and continuing.

The President's action authorizes the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), to coordinate all disaster relief efforts which have the purpose of alleviating the hardship and suffering caused by the emergency on the local population, and to provide appropriate assistance for required emergency measures, authorized under Title V of the Stafford Act, to save lives, protect property and public health and safety, or to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe in the parishes of Allen, Avoyelles, Beauregard, Bienville, Bossier, Caddo, Caldwell, Claiborne, Catahoula, Concordia, De Soto, East Baton Rouge, East Carroll, East Feliciana, Evangeline, Franklin, Grant, Jackson, LaSalle, Lincoln, Livingston, Madison, Morehouse, Natchitoches, Pointe Coupee, Ouachita, Rapides, Red River, Richland, Sabine, St. Helena, St. Landry, Tensas, Union, Vernon, Webster, West Carroll, West Feliciana, and Winn.

Specifically, FEMA is authorized to identify, mobilize, and provide at its discretion, equipment and resources necessary to alleviate the impacts of the emergency. Debris removal and emergency protective measures, including direct Federal assistance, will be provided at 75 percent Federal funding.

Representing FEMA, Michael D. Brown, Under Secretary for Emergency Preparedness and Response, Department of Homeland Security, named William Lokey as the Federal Coordinating Officer for Federal recovery operations in the affected area.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: FEMA (202) 646-4600.

I have no idea what this means when it's all put together, I just think it's absurd that everyone will say "DON'T PLAY POLITICS WITH TRAGEDY ... oh, I mean, unless the other guy's to blame."

sandspur said...

http://www.ieminc.com/Whats_New/Press_Releases/pressrelease060304_Catastrophic.htm

June 3, 2004
IEM, Inc., the Baton Rouge-based emergency management and homeland security consultant, will lead the development of a catastrophic hurricane disaster plan for Southeast Louisiana and the City of New Orleans under a more than half a million dollar contract with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security/Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
In making the announcement today on behalf of teaming partners Dewberry, URS Corporation and James Lee Witt Associates, IEM Director of Homeland Security Wayne Thomas explained that the development of a base catastrophic hurricane disaster plan has urgency due to the recent start of the annual hurricane season which runs through November. National weather experts are predicting an above normal Atlantic hurricane season with six to eight hurricanes, of which three could be categorized as major.

Everything I have seen indicates that the emergency plan was from 2000. Was there a plan from June 2004? Here is Witt again. IS something afoot?

kenprice said...

I am an Emergency Management Specialist for South Carolina. What is not being mentioned in the MSM is the fact that FEMA tells everyone that, for the first 72 hours after an emergency event, you're pretty much on your own. NJew Orleans violated every rule in the book: They failed to use available resources, they failed to have supplies pre-positioned, they did not follow their own disaster plan. The ONLY thing they get right was shifting the blame for their failures to everyone but themselves.

In future years, Katrina is going to be used as a classic "case study" on how NOT TO handle a crisas.

Justin.kredible said...

Here's a few plans for you...

http://www.ohsep.louisiana.gov/plans/plansindex.htm

Anonymous said...

Out of the New Orleans Emergency Operation Plan on the city website. The Mayor didn't come close to making the standard warning times.

A. Evacuation Time Requirements

Using information developed as part of the Southeast Louisiana Hurricane Task Force and other research, the City of New Orleans has established a maximum acceptable hurricane evacuation time standard for a Category 3 storm event of 72 hours. This is based on clearance time or is the time required to clear all vehicles evacuating in response to a hurricane situation from area roadways. Clearance time begins when the first evacuating vehicle enters the road network and ends when the last evacuating vehicle reaches its destination.

Clearance time also includes the time required by evacuees to secure their homes and prepare to leave (mobilization time); the time spent by evacuees traveling along the road network (travel time); and the time spent by evacuees waiting along the road network due to traffic congestion (delay time). Clearance time does not refer to the time a single vehicle spends traveling on the road network. Evacuation notices or orders will be issued during three stages prior to gale force winds making landfall.

> Precautionary Evacuation Notice: 72 hours or less

> Special Needs Evacuation Order: 8-12 hours after Precautionary Evacuation Notice issued

> General Evacuation Notice: 48 hours or less

The Sgts Lady said...

Excellent post. I will be referencing the information over the next few weeks in my discussions with the less informed... I do wonder if the LA Govenor was advised by someone within the Democratic Party not to sign control over to the Federal Government...and hiring a former Clinton FEMA Director...what about relying on the team she'd put together for this exact purpose (oh, right, paper tigers only). Hmmm, sounds like politics as usual in LA...I suspect Mayor Nagin's endorsement of the Republican candidate for Govenor didn't win him any friends in Blanco's administration.... Of course this falls into the area of wild speculation, but there's more truth to it than the lies being pushed by the "other" side...I won't mention them here. Again, excellent post and terrific effort by the Military (as usual).

Anonymous said...

Y'gotta understand one thing about Louisiana politicians -- if there ain't any graft, they just ain't interested in it.

cc said...

I commend you on your very informative and rational post.

the sgts lady: I agree! Our military is the best in the world!

Anonymous said...

It's typical of Democrats to shun President Bush and reach for Clintonites to help them out of a jam. This time it backfired on them, big time.

The MSM are putting up a smokescreen to hide the fact that their precious Democrats blew it. It's amazing to read how bad President Bush acted and how noble the Louisiana Democrats were in this disaster.

The mayor of New Orleans acted like a victim, the governor of Louisiana like a partisan hack, and their senator became a defensive crybaby.

I hope the reasonable people of Louisiana wake up to these facts come election day.

But, they won't if the MSM has it's way.

Gary<<<<<

RollCast said...

I fear that the docucments that you've linked, particularly those from LA and NOLA on diaster planning, are going to be taken down from the official websites to keep out the "busybody agitators". I hope someone in BlogWorld is storing all of this stuff...

Source said...

But…they had buses.…

Did they have the local manpower to organize one of the largest evacuations in US history?

But…they had buses.…

Did local officials have the resources to feed, water and provide medical aid to the tens of thousands of people they’d needed to evacuate?

But…they had buses.…

Did they have a destination? Or were the buses supposed to travel North until they ran out of gas? And If they had destinations, were these destinations equipped to deal with thousands and thousands of survivors for days on end?

But…they had buses.…

Yes, they had Buses. Almost 600 of them. They just didn’t have any support from the Federal Government. And if you think it’s possible to evacuate a major US city without it…well, the term Batshit Insane has been escaping my lips at an acceleratred pace the more I hear apologists for FEMA, the DHS and The President.

Source.

Walt said...

Did they have the local manpower to organize one of the largest evacuations in US history?

Apparently not. Apparently they didn't have the manpower to evacuate... anybody

And I guess that about answers the rest of your questions as well.

Don Singleton said...

RollCast said... I fear that the docucments that you've linked, particularly those from LA and NOLA on diaster planning, are going to be taken down from the official websites to keep out the "busybody agitators". I hope someone in BlogWorld is storing all of this stuff...

I have saved all of them on my hard drive. I don't intend to post them yet, but will if and when necessary. Also we have Google Cache and the WayBack Machine

Source said...
But…they had buses.…

Did they have the local manpower to organize one of the largest evacuations in US history?


They had a lot of people wanting out, and I bet a lot of them knew how to drive. Surely Jabbar Gibson was not the only one.

But…they had buses.…

Did local officials have the resources to feed, water and provide medical aid to the tens of thousands of people they’d needed to evacuate?


Their emergency plans certainly called for them to have them, President Bush issued the requested disaster declaration which resulted in food, water, and medical supplies being staged in nearby areas, so if she was not willing to let him bring them into the state, they could have sent a bus load of people out of state, and filled it with supplies for the trip back to pick up more people to evacuate.

But…they had buses.…

Did they have a destination? Or were the buses supposed to travel North until they ran out of gas?


North would have been a good direction. West would have been another good one. And they would have encountered a number of "filling stations" along the way where they could have bought more gas.

And If they had destinations, were these destinations equipped to deal with thousands and thousands of survivors for days on end?

Perhaps not before the storm hit (that is something they should have had in their planning documents, reciprocal arrangements with other states to have places for evacuees to go in an emergency). But after the storm hit, Texas set up facilities in the Astrodome, and rather than sending people to their Superdome they should have taken them to the Astrodome, which had plenty of food, water, and electrical power.

But…they had buses.…

Yes, they had Buses. Almost 600 of them. They just didn’t have any support from the Federal Government. And if you think it’s possible to evacuate a major US city without it…well, the term Batshit Insane has been escaping my lips at an acceleratred pace the more I hear apologists for FEMA, the DHS and The President.


They had a lot of supplies staged in nearby states as a result of Bush's disaster declaration, and he was asking for authorization to send in Federalized National Guard and other military troops with the equipment, but she would not authorize it because she preferred having her people do without, than share the spotlight with Bush.

And she did not send those 600 buses out with evacuees, and let them pick the supplies up on their return trip.

NotHughHefner said...

I've been blogging about the criminal negligence of the NO mayor and LA governor for days.

They exemplify the very lowest form of civil servant morons the democrats field year after year in LA.

Bush will do what he does best, which is dig in and get the job done, despite the whining of the MSM. And intelligent, voting Americans will appreciate it next voting cycle. Count on it.

Tad said...

The most important part of an emergency plan is the execute it when necessary. It seemed pretty clear to me here in Tucson that this was an epic storm poised to decimate the region. Apparently the Mayor of New Orleans didn't think so.

No , no evacuation. Its Bush's fault, of course.

Anonymous said...

Source: during the fiasco of the evacuation of IVAN in Sep 2004, Nagin and Blanco PROMISED in front of "God and everybody" during a press conference to fix things and specifically evacuate the poor, disabled, elderly, and those without cars.

So yes, that they had buses is damning. Nagin went through the evac LAST YEAR for Ivan; so he SHOULD have come up with a plan to get people out. In a city without power, water, sewage, and food, thousands would die in the hot and blazing August Louisiana sun. Nagin knew that and basically threw up his hands and didn't even TRY to get anyone out. No special trains running from Amtrak to evacuate folks on Friday (or Sat AM); no buses going to the poorest neighborhoods to pick up those who had no transportation and at LEAST take them to Baton Rouge.

I mean, that's just inexcusable. It's like New York after 9/11 having no terrorist response plan, or San Diego having NOW no fire plan for massive wildfires. Advocates for the poor and the disabled BLASTED both Nagin and Blanco in 2004 for their non-response, so what changed?

Blanco and Nagin chose to do nothing, and merely blame Bush. Bush deserves blame, for not realizing late Wed that neither Nagin (spent most of the week in Baton Rouge) and Blanco (spent most of the week crying) were even minimally competent and flying to Baton Rouge to personally take charge and elbow both aside, worry about legality later. Bush by leading (and taking a huge risk) could have saved some people in either the Superdome or Convention Center by mandating a decision to get folks out.

The Convention Center was literally a football field away from the ferry crossing to the West Bank which had power, food, sewage, and water and could have taken in at least the elderly, ill, infants, etc. which would have saved lives. Bush's fault is leadership, not responding to the obvious failures in Louisiana and taking charge to save at least some lives.

There WERE National Guard troops outside New Orleans by late Tue but they did not enter because of political decisions by Blanco. Likely the fear of white national guardsman shooting snipers or thugs who were African American. That sort of decision makes perfect sense in Louisiana.

Frustrated career USN said...

Doesn't this make you wish Senators Clinton and Reid get their way and we have a Katrina Failings commission? Wouldn't it be wonderful for them to receive a civics lesson on what the federal government can and cannot do? I really would like someone to shove the truth very publicly down a certain group of politicians throats! Now how do we ensure Governor Blanco and Mayor Nagin take responsibility for their failings vice get away with blaming the President?

Anonymous said...

How about doing up a page with "condensed version" of the facts about how Mayor Nagin didn't follow the city evacuation plan, which specifically said to use the city and school busses? Remove the sarcastic bits like the Nagin Memorial Motor Pool.

I've found most lefties were born unable to grok sarcasm. ;)

Also use New Orleans instead of NO. Have to think about the "lowest common denominator, minus one" who may be reading it. Like Ted Kennedy or Frank Lautenberg, who made the insane statement that the military and other outfits should've been in
New Orleans Monday afternoon. (Apparently by using the secret alien teleporters hidden at Area 51.)

That'd be easy for people to e-mail to their senators, congressmen and friends and relatives.

Even better would be to suggest to your readers to print many copies, preferably in color, and get them
to shelters where refugees from New Orleans are.

Got to get the truth to them to stop Nagin's blame anyone but him campaign!

If people at the shelters have this in hand, just might get a few on the news asking why the mayor
didn't follow the plan and get them out instead of penning them up at the Superdome and convention
center with no food, water or porta-potties!

PLEASE do this, show the lefties they CANNOT get away with their lies about who's fault the mess is
in New Orleans!

Brady Westwater said...

There is a difference between failing - and lying to the people you are supposed to protect. And that is what Ray Nagin did.

http://lacowboy.blogspot.com/2005/09/hurricane-katrina-blogger-brendan-loy