Thursday :: Sep 15, 2005

Thursday Morning Katrina Update

by Steve

"In some instances, (Democrats are) trying to up the ante and use this crisis to accomplish goals that maybe they wouldn’t have otherwise been able to accomplish without a natural disaster."
--GOP Senator Charles Grassley, this morning

First, I have a message for Senator Grassley: look in the mirror pal. Before you accuse Democrats of using Katrina to achieve goals, please tell us why the White House wants to use Katrina to bring back separate but equal education for black kids, why the White House refuses to expand eligibility requirements temporarily for Medicaid, why the White House is using Katrina to undo Davis-Bacon, and why the White House is using Katrina to suspend wage supports for service workers in the hurricane zone? I’m sure we’ll hear more about the GOP plans to profit from Katrina tonight when Bush outlines his vision for how to rebuild the hurricane zone and pad the pockets of Halliburton, Bechtel, and other campaign contributors at the same time through GOP graft and corruption that will make Iraq look like an amateur operation.

Second, former FEMA chief Michael Brown tells the New York Times that it was all the state’s fault, and that he did tell the White House early on that the state couldn’t get its act together, something Governor Blanco fessed up to yesterday when she did her bit to accept responsibility for problems at her level. However, the problem with Brown’s statement is that it confirms that 1) the White House knew exactly how bad things were very early on, and given the authority that Chertoff already had to act without waiting for the state to request assistance once Bush declared a incident of national significance over the weekend, the White House still didn’t step in until it was too late, a point made in the New York Times article this morning. One of the reasons for the delay, which didn’t manifest themselves when Jeb’s state was hit the year before during the election, were the bureaucratic obstacles raised by the Pentagon that were documented by Mike Isikoff and Mark Hosenball in Newsweek last night. And it doesn’t help make Brown any more credible on this when it was his agency that prevented rescue supplies from getting to Methodist Hospital.

Third, the GOP senate took the necessary steps to cover Bush’s ass when they rejected an outside commission to look into government’s response to Katrina, even though a large majority of the public wants an outside commission to investigate what went wrong at all levels.

Fourth, the Army backtracked yesterday and claimed the media would not be prevented from covering the removal of bodies from New Orleans, after a member of the 82nd Airborne told a San Francisco Chronicle reporter and cameraman earlier in the week that a Pentagon “policy” prevented such coverage, and that the media faced a loss of credentials and an eviction from Louisiana if they violated that “policy”. The Army said yesterday that there is no such policy.

Steve :: 8:51 AM :: Comments (6) :: TrackBack (1) :: Digg It!