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Times-Picayune Editorial, Open Letter

Katrina Times-Picayune Op-Ed

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#1 Nonny

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 09:28 AM

CNN

Quote

Editorial blasts federal response

Sunday, September 4, 2005; Posted: 7:21 p.m. EDT (23:21 GMT)

NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana (CNN) -- The Times-Picayune of New Orleans printed this editorial in its Sunday edition, criticizing the federal government's response to Hurricane Katrina and calling on every FEMA official to be fired:
An open letter to the President

Dear Mr. President:

We heard you loud and clear Friday when you visited our devastated city and the Gulf Coast and said, "What is not working, we're going to make it right."

Please forgive us if we wait to see proof of your promise before believing you. But we have good reason for our skepticism.

Bienville built New Orleans where he built it for one main reason: It's accessible. The city between the Mississippi River and Lake Pontchartrain was easy to reach in 1718.

How much easier it is to access in 2005 now that there are interstates and bridges, airports and helipads, cruise ships, barges, buses and diesel-powered trucks.

Despite the city's multiple points of entry, our nation's bureaucrats spent days after last week's hurricane wringing their hands, lamenting the fact that they could neither rescue the city's stranded victims nor bring them food, water and medical supplies.

Meanwhile there were journalists, including some who work for The Times-Picayune, going in and out of the city via the Crescent City Connection. On Thursday morning, that crew saw a caravan of 13 Wal-Mart tractor trailers headed into town to bring food, water and supplies to a dying city.

Television reporters were doing live reports from downtown New Orleans streets. Harry Connick Jr. brought in some aid Thursday, and his efforts were the focus of a "Today" show story Friday morning.

Yet, the people trained to protect our nation, the people whose job it is to quickly bring in aid were absent. Those who should have been deploying troops were singing a sad song about how our city was impossible to reach.

We're angry, Mr. President, and we'll be angry long after our beloved city and surrounding parishes have been pumped dry. Our people deserved rescuing. Many who could have been were not. That's to the government's shame.

Mayor Ray Nagin did the right thing Sunday when he allowed those with no other alternative to seek shelter from the storm inside the Louisiana Superdome. We still don't know what the death toll is, but one thing is certain: Had the Superdome not been opened, the city's death toll would have been higher. The toll may even have been exponentially higher.

It was clear to us by late morning Monday that many people inside the Superdome would not be returning home. It should have been clear to our government, Mr. President. So why weren't they evacuated out of the city immediately? We learned seven years ago, when Hurricane Georges threatened, that the Dome isn't suitable as a long-term shelter. So what did state and national officials think would happen to tens of thousands of people trapped inside with no air conditioning, overflowing toilets and dwindling amounts of food, water and other essentials?

State Rep. Karen Carter was right Friday when she said the city didn't have but two urgent needs: "Buses! And gas!" Every official at the Federal Emergency Management Agency should be fired, Director Michael Brown especially.

In a nationally televised interview Thursday night, he said his agency hadn't known until that day that thousands of storm victims were stranded at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. He gave another nationally televised interview the next morning and said, "We've provided food to the people at the Convention Center so that they've gotten at least one, if not two meals, every single day."

Lies don't get more bald-faced than that, Mr. President.

Yet, when you met with Mr. Brown Friday morning, you told him, "You're doing a heck of a job."

That's unbelievable.

There were thousands of people at the Convention Center because the riverfront is high ground. The fact that so many people had reached there on foot is proof that rescue vehicles could have gotten there, too.

We, who are from New Orleans, are no less American than those who live on the Great Plains or along the Atlantic Seaboard. We're no less important than those from the Pacific Northwest or Appalachia. Our people deserved to be rescued.

No expense should have been spared. No excuses should have been voiced. Especially not one as preposterous as the claim that New Orleans couldn't be reached.

Mr. President, we sincerely hope you fulfill your promise to make our beloved communities work right once again.

When you do, we will be the first to applaud.
I think they went easy on him.  :angry:  

Nonny
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#2 Spectacles

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 09:32 AM

This is a particularly good piece because it nails the question that most Americans are asking: why on earth was aid not dispatched soon enough?  And it challenges the "accessibility" excuse.
"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

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#3 G1223

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 10:14 AM

So where is the anger at the Govenor for sitting on his hands and not calling up those not federalized members of the national guard? OR his not doing anything productive for the first few days.

Awful nice to shake the finger at the guy who is suppose to show up a few days later rather than the man who is already there and appearantly doing nothing.
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#4 waterpanther

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 10:20 AM

I think it's a fair statement that anyone who was paying attention to what Governor Blanco was actually doing would know she's a woman.
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#5 Nonny

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 10:21 AM

G1223, on Sep 6 2005, 07:14 AM, said:

So where is the anger at the Govenor for sitting on his hands....

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Somebody else want to tell him?  

Nonny
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The once and future Nonny

"Give a man a gun and he can rob a bank, give a man a bank and he can rob the world." Can anyone tell me who I am quoting?  I found this with no attribution.

Fatal miscarriages are forever.

Stupid is stupid, this I believe. And ignorance is the worst kind of stupid, since ignorance is a choice.  Suzanne Brockmann

All things must be examined, debated, investigated without exception and without regard for anyone's feelings. Diderot

#6 MuseZack

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 10:22 AM

G1223, on Sep 6 2005, 03:14 PM, said:

So where is the anger at the Govenor for sitting on his hands and not calling up those not federalized members of the national guard? OR his not doing anything productive for the first few days.

Awful nice to shake the finger at the guy who is suppose to show up a few days later rather than the man who is already there and appearantly doing nothing.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


The governor is a SHE.  And she did call up the National Guard (1/3 of whom were in Iraq, along with half their equipment) immediately and ask for help from other states--- help which was delayed for several days by the federal government.
"Some day, after we have mastered the wind, the waves, the tides, and gravity,
We shall harness for God the energies of Love.
Then, for the second time in the history of the world,
we will have discovered fire."
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#7 Nonny

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 10:23 AM

waterpanther, on Sep 6 2005, 07:20 AM, said:

I think it's a fair statement that anyone who was paying attention to what Governor Blanco was actually doing would know she's a woman.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Dang!  Cross post!  :lol:  Well, so long as somebody told him.  :rolleyes:  

Nonny
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The once and future Nonny

"Give a man a gun and he can rob a bank, give a man a bank and he can rob the world." Can anyone tell me who I am quoting?  I found this with no attribution.

Fatal miscarriages are forever.

Stupid is stupid, this I believe. And ignorance is the worst kind of stupid, since ignorance is a choice.  Suzanne Brockmann

All things must be examined, debated, investigated without exception and without regard for anyone's feelings. Diderot

#8 waterpanther

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 10:30 AM

Hmmmm, on second thought . . ..  You know, I think we've been hasty and made assumptions here.  Governor George Bush has indeed been sitting on his hands. . ..
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#9 G1223

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 10:32 AM

And the using of those troops to stop the looting? Was that before or after the feds arrived? I seem to remember the locals considering doing it themselves since the police and guardmen were not maintaining order.
If you encounter any Trolls. You really must not forget them.
And if you want to save these shores. For Pity sake Don't Trust them.
paraphrased from H. "Breaker" Morant

TANSTAAFL
If you voted for Obama then all the mistakes he makes are your fault and I will point this out to you every time he does mess up.

When the fall is all that remains. It matters a great deal.

All hail the clich's all emcompassing shadow.

My playing well with other's skill has been vastly overrated

Member of the Order of the Knigths of the Woeful Countance.

#10 Nick

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 10:43 AM

It's nice to see more evidence of the media waking up and beginning to put some feet to the fire.  It's an utter disgrace how this has been handled, and the President needs to show some real leadership here.  Will we actually see it?  Or is he going to continue photo-opping and play the pass-the-blame-game (as so many other politicians are now doing)?.

-Nick

#11 MuseZack

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 10:43 AM

G1223, on Sep 6 2005, 03:32 PM, said:

And the using of those troops to stop the looting? Was that before or after the feds arrived? I seem to remember the locals considering doing it themselves since the police and guardmen were not maintaining order.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Los Angeles has a police force six times larger than New Orleans (and a lot better equipped and less corrupt), and it took four days and the Marines from Camp Pendleton to quell the Rodney King riots in one section of the city.
"Some day, after we have mastered the wind, the waves, the tides, and gravity,
We shall harness for God the energies of Love.
Then, for the second time in the history of the world,
we will have discovered fire."
--Father Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

#12 Anarch

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 12:24 PM

Quote

So where is the anger at the Govenor for sitting on his hands and not calling up those not federalized members of the national guard?

One should note at this juncture too that Blanco requested members of the New Mexico NG and that request was accepted on the 29th/30th... but the White House failed/refused to authorize the transfer of troops until the 2nd.

#13 Natolii

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 01:56 PM

G1223, on Sep 6 2005, 11:32 AM, said:

And the using of those troops to stop the looting? Was that before or after the feds arrived? I seem to remember the locals considering doing it themselves since the police and guardmen were not maintaining order.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


G-man,

National guard was called up on Saturday 8/27/05.

How do I know? Because my buddy Thrashman let us know that he had to go on duty that day and his brother has been letting us know what is going on.

The NG were on search and rescue for the tens of thousands that were not at the Convention Center or at the Superdome. How hard is that to comprehend?

In a time such as this, Wal-mart is also known to open their doors and let the looters come in and take teh perishables... It's going to go bad otherwise. This is a quote from a Wal-mart employee.
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#14 Nonny

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 02:10 PM

Natolii, on Sep 6 2005, 10:56 AM, said:

In a time such as this, Wal-mart is also known to open their doors and let the looters come in and take teh perishables... It's going to go bad otherwise. This is a quote from a Wal-mart employee.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Good on them!  :happy:  :happy:  :happy:  

Nonny
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The once and future Nonny

"Give a man a gun and he can rob a bank, give a man a bank and he can rob the world." Can anyone tell me who I am quoting?  I found this with no attribution.

Fatal miscarriages are forever.

Stupid is stupid, this I believe. And ignorance is the worst kind of stupid, since ignorance is a choice.  Suzanne Brockmann

All things must be examined, debated, investigated without exception and without regard for anyone's feelings. Diderot

#15 Cait

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 02:17 PM

Anarch, on Sep 6 2005, 10:24 AM, said:

Quote

So where is the anger at the Govenor for sitting on his hands and not calling up those not federalized members of the national guard?

One should note at this juncture too that Blanco requested members of the New Mexico NG and that request was accepted on the 29th/30th... but the White House failed/refused to authorize the transfer of troops until the 2nd.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


OH dear lord is this true?  Is this true?

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html


#16 waterpanther

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 02:21 PM

Stopping the looting should of course have been the first priority of everyone concerned.  Let the old folks drown, but for all the gods' sake, stop some idiot from stealing a water-logged, shorted out TV!  Let the babies dehydrate and die for lack of water; just get that guy who's making off with some fishing rods!  Who cares about that family stranded on their roof for five days?  Catch the kids siphoning gas out of an abandoned car!

Priorities, people!  Priorities!

Edited by waterpanther, 06 September 2005 - 02:23 PM.

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#17 Spectacles

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 02:32 PM

Cait, on Sep 6 2005, 02:17 PM, said:

Anarch, on Sep 6 2005, 10:24 AM, said:

Quote

So where is the anger at the Govenor for sitting on his hands and not calling up those not federalized members of the national guard?

One should note at this juncture too that Blanco requested members of the New Mexico NG and that request was accepted on the 29th/30th... but the White House failed/refused to authorize the transfer of troops until the 2nd.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


OH dear lord is this true?  Is this true?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



I've been asking myself that question for days and over so many things, Cait....
"Facts are stupid things." -Ronald Reagan at the 1988 Republican National Convention, attempting to quote John Adams, who said, "Facts are stubborn things"

"Although health care enrollment is actually going pretty well at this point, thousands and maybe millions of Americans have failed to sign up for coverage because they believe the false horror stories they keep hearing." -- Paul Krugman

#18 Cait

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 02:36 PM

Spectacles, on Sep 6 2005, 12:32 PM, said:

Cait, on Sep 6 2005, 02:17 PM, said:


OH dear lord is this true?  Is this true?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>



I've been asking myself that question for days and over so many things, Cait....

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


I just keep shaking my head in disbelief.  What a mess!

And the agony has just begun.. Soon all those families will have to begin accepting the deaths of loved ones.  Such terrible sadness.

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html


#19 Anarch

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 04:24 PM

Foolish Times-Picayune.  The Medium Lobster explains it all.

#20 Cait

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Posted 06 September 2005 - 06:48 PM

Oh that is good.  I'd be laughing out loud, if it weren't so true.

Quote

This, of course, is ridiculous: as anyone knowledgable in the nature of the structure and history of the American executive branch would explain, the president is utterly powerless in the face of disaster, and can only look on helplessly and leave things to those powerhouses in local government.

Rules for surviving an Autocracy:

Rule#1: Believe the Autocrat.
Rule#2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
Rule#3: Institutions will not save you.
Rule#4: Be outraged.
Rule#5: Don't make compromises.
Rule#6: Remember the future.

Source:
http://www2.nybooks....r-survival.html




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