Tuesday :: Feb 14, 2006

Capitalizing on the Shooter Distraction - FEMA Reform?

by Duckman GR

First, let me say that I don't believe any of this story, except the part that Josh Marshall mentions, that 90 minutes after the incident Rover was on the phone talking to Ms. Armstrong. But little Spinnin' Scottie didn't know didly about what had happened. Right.

Character will out, regardless. And Big Time Dick has none. Not only didn’t he tell the press, until the next day, he actually didn’t tell the press at all, leaving it to someone else to clean up for him, and to do the talking for him too. Nice, what a man, huh?

It just doesn’t matter the subject, their first reaction is to cover-up, deny, delay, lie. Now, you have to ask yourself, why is that? Why is a cover-up the first thing they always do? Followed by shifting the blame to the victims, then accusing the messenger of complicity in a crime? Lack of personal integrity, if you ask me.

But there's always those side benefits, helping deflect attention from more telling actions. Like the House report and the Democratic addendum that rips Chertoff and HSD, Brown, Bush and his gang.

Via First Draft and Scout Prime, there’s this article about that Democratic report that discusses all the good work of FEMA, and Chertoff et al.

And this bunch is going to reform FEMA. Similar to the way that Porter Goss was going to fix the CIA, no doubt.

But here’s the reality of it.

Knight Ridder’s Seth Borenstein does some journalism that illustrates 2 things. 1, what is journalism, and 2, the absurdity of having the fox reform the henhouse.

The key to fixing the problems that bedeviled the federal response to Hurricane Katrina is in the details, top Bush administration disaster officials said Monday. They proposed high-tech tracking of relief supplies, more federal disaster workers and a beefier Homeland Security Department.

But Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff's new disaster response plan fails to address the poor leadership that became apparent after Katrina slammed the Gulf Coast, outside disaster experts and administration critics said. Two Louisiana Democratic congressmen even called for Chertoff's ouster.


At a meeting of state emergency management officials in Virginia on Monday, Chertoff said: "Our most urgent priority in the near term is to take a hard, honest look at what we can do to improve our response capability and make substantial progress toward that goal by the looming hurricane season."

Those state disaster officials, who are normally among the first to respond in a crisis, said that they're hearing some good proposals from Bush administration officials, but added that they're upset that the president is cutting federal planning money. On Tuesday, an association of state disaster officials will ask Congress to appropriate $250 million a year in planning funds. The Bush administration has proposed $170 million for the 2007 fiscal year, $13 million less than the budget for 2006.

Where have we heard this story before? Improve SEC enforcement by cutting enforcement budgets. Cut the Deficit by increasing spending and cutting taxes. Improve Education by cutting Student Loan Programs and dumping unfunded education mandates on the States via NCLB.

Their whole operation is just a bunch of lies meant to confuse and paralyze the average American. And why? For money and power of course. There is no other explanation, no other theory that fits all cases. Incompetence, yes, in part for Katrina, and Iraq Security and Reconstruction. Selfish greed for Enron and Cunningham and Abramoff and Noe and Delay and Reed. But money and power covers all bases with this lot. And when you understand that, then the lies become much clearer, more explanable.

Acceptable? No. Understandable? No. Treasonous? Yes. Derelict? Yes. Disgusting? Thrice yes.

As a further illustration, take this other story from the Times Picayune. Keep in mind that some of bushies best corporate buddies got millions and billions in contracts to clean up "debris" in Katrina's wake.

He knew what had to be done. So he drove to the nursery he owns on nearby Tchoupitoulas Street, hopped in his Bobcat front-loader and went to work. Behind the wheel of the small bulldozer, Richards toiled for two tireless weeks, clearing trees, debris and downed power lines from Uptown streets.


When he was done, Richards had cleared almost 23 miles of roadways, including the critical stretch from River Road to Tchoupitoulas Street that became a lifeline to and from the city. Within days, military personnel, emergency workers and other first-responders discovered his handwork and poured into the flooded city along his path.

No bid, no contract, no pay, he just did what needed to be done. A real American.

The HSD press release has the all important debris cleanup, but nothing like that above: In order to streamline this process and ensure quick reimbursement for services, FEMA will work to establish solid contracting practices... yep, streamline those bulldozers and contracts baby, no oversight for KBR thank you.

A couple of other things struck me. One was how piecemeal this reform seems, and how it just seems to give more opportunities for more Gov't contracts. But that couldn't be, could it? New upgrades to computer systems, advanced IT for better data mining, er data collection, new special mobile disaster trucks, etc.

Oh, there you go again, money and power for the corps. As always.

Duckman GR :: 12:09 AM :: Comments (15) :: TrackBack (0) :: Digg It!