T Nation

Abandon Ship (New Orleans)

[quote]Bill Roberts wrote:
As you had written, “… an army Major told CNN that the city protection at it’s current state could handle a strong category 2 hurricane. He also mentioned that because of financial reasons, (i think man-power/time as well) that the city at this point in time could not withstand a more powerful hurricane” it was fairly natural to think you were saying that lack of money was a cause or even the main cause.

By the way, do you think it was Bush’s job to order Nagin to get those school buses going? Was it his job to order the city to get its act together before the hurricane? Was he supposed to fly in the United States Air Force and bring in the US Army to evacuate people? What should he have done pre-and-during hurricane that he did not? Specifically?

Surely there was no problem of not handing out enough money afterwards??

Funny how there was no such whining in Kansas, where the Federal government did no more with regard to the flooding (and should not have.)

It’s the responsibily of cities, counties, and states to be prepared for hurricanes, flooding, etc and it is their responsibility to be both able to recover from them and to actually do it. However, there’s a part of the spectrum where the concept of responsibility is utterly denied and who have it that the Federal Government is supposed to do everything that in fact is their own responsibility.

The people in Kansas did not fall within that part of the political spectrum. The people in New Orleans not only fall within it – speaking of aggregate behavior, not every single individual – but they are the very definition of it. I speak of course only of the whiners and the victim-mentality set, not those that have chosen to be responsible for themselves, of which there many, also.[/quote]

The Army Major stated money and man power as the reasons, along with another, and I think it was time… i was only positive about the first one, 90% sure on the 2nd and 75% sure he said the 3rd one… thats why I wrote it like that.

Anyways, do you think if the President called up a governor and said “look here buddy, i’m gonna make it rain shit on you for the rest of your political life if you don’t take care of this right fucking now!!!”

I have a feeling he failed at doing this. Was it his responsibility to do this? NO. Should he have done this in my opinion, YES.

Now, I’d love to argue Bush and other elected officials sucking at their job else where, but this thread was originally created to get opinions on the FUTURE state of N.O. and not how the government sucked in the past.

[quote]Bill Roberts wrote:
The people in Kansas did not fall within that part of the political spectrum. The people in New Orleans not only fall within it – speaking of aggregate behavior, not every single individual – but they are the very definition of it. I speak of course only of the whiners and the victim-mentality set, not those that have chosen to be responsible for themselves, of which there many, also.[/quote]

Nagin should be in prison for his actions - or severe lack thereof - during Katrina. But he’s not. In fact the stump headed idiots of NOLA re-elected the man who in all likelihood stares at his shoestrings every morning waiting on someone to tie them for him.

Whoa, Bill:

I don’t like “strawman” arguments, so I want to be clear on what you’re saying and the analogy you are drawing.

The first half of your argument I agree with; it was Nagin’s responsibility and that of Louisiana (the other Gulf States had their own problems at that time).

The second half I have problems with.

Comparing the slow rise of the Mississippi, Missouri and Arkansas River basins, mostly (but not entirely) over a LOT of farmland, with people with experience in dealing with flooding…

And comparing that to failure of the pump and levee system of NO ,which allowed the Atlantic wall to flood suddenly (within hours) into an area with a population density of a New York borough; with people as prepared for flooding as someone in Arizona, is a stretch.

The two groups were not under different POLITICAL realities; they were under much different EMERGENCY AND EVACUATIION realities.

Mufasa

The problems with emergency and evacuation of New Orleans were never the Federal Government’s responsiblity.

The only thing remaining to criticize the Federal government for is the “aftercare.”

As I said, the difference in expected and demanded aftercare was drastic between Kansas and New Orleans, because of different philosophy of personal and local responsibility. The latter had a pattern (of many, not all) of whining, dependency, and sense of entitlement; the latter did not.

Expected and demanded aftercare?

C’mon, Bill.

There weren’t many,(if any) dead, decaying bodies floating in the canals of Levenworth and Kansas City; or thousands of people stuffed into Arrowhead stadium with no water, toilets and very little food in the middle of the Summer.

What you saw as whining were in my mind pleas for food, water, shelter and basic services.

Mufasa

[quote]Mufasa wrote:
Expected and demanded aftercare?

C’mon, Bill.

There weren’t many,(if any) dead, decaying bodies floating in the canals of Levenworth and Kansas City; or thousands of people stuffed into Arrowhead stadium with no water, toilets and very little food in the middle of the Summer.

What you saw as whining were in my mind pleas for food, water, shelter and basic services.

Mufasa[/quote]

Plan ahead next time? :smiley:

The whining continued for indefinite periods of time after, and as for wanting food, water, shelter, and basic services, guess what that was completely available to any person who listened to the fact that the hurricane was coming and acted responsibly and had basic adult skills in taking care of themselves.

Of course I sympathize completely with the elderly, the infirm, the sick and so forth. Their city and state failed them.

Blaming Bush or anyone else in Washington DC is just missing the point of what really happened.

As for your point on the floodwaters offering several days warning in Kansas, there was several days warning of Katrina too, so no difference there. The difference in demands for outside help vs self-sufficiency (or almost entirely so) was principally in the attitude and self-responsibility of the people and local and state governments involved. I was not incorrect in pointing that out.

Are you really going to deny or disagree that between the two places, Kansas generally has and has shown a greater prevalence of a worldview and practice of self-reliance and individual and local responsibility and less of reliance on Big Government, while New Orleans has and has shown a greater prevalence of reliance on Big Government and less on self-reliance and local responsibility?

Wow.

We will just have to agree to disagree on this one, Bill.

Mufasa

I know where this is goin and it ain’t gonna be pretty when it gets there, but I’m with Bill. There are much larger issues than meteorological tragedies in play here.

Well, as to where it could be going, I think I explained what I said and why I said it adequately enough already. Any who disagree are certainly free and in fact encouraged to give their counterexamples, but I’ve already put forth what I thought on it adequately.

Hopefully this time will be better for New Orleans, though the fact that they re-elected the same mayor isn’t promising, nor is the fact that despite considerable time going by they apparently haven’t taking the levy rebuilding seriously enough. (If they haven’t used all or at least most of the funds provided – that exact same situation existed before Katrina as well, it’s not that they weren’t allocated the funds then either, but rather that they didn’t use them – that seems like strong evidence that they didn’t take the levee rebuilding seriously enough.)

Hopefully the hurricane will slip by or downgrade in intensity.

Before Katrina, my understanding is that the federal government actually gave them money to improve the levies, and they decided to spend it elsewhere.

Before Katrina hit, there was even a documentary that mentioned how the levies needed to be upgraded before a hurricane hits there.

So people were fully aware of the reality, and did nothing.

Then we have people who did not have insurance. If you have insurance, the insurance company comes in and at least reimburses your financial loss. (You may have to fight at this point though, but they will pay.)

But if you didn’t, why should the government pony up the cash? Why should anyone buy insurance if the government is just going to pay for it anyway?

Is this in any way fair?

Then we have people actually using this disaster as another way to destroy Bush’s reputation. (Any reason, any purpose.) My disgust for that (successful) political maneuver just showed what pathetic low life some politicians are.

And then the nuts who were using this one hurricane as proof of global warming, as if there had never been a hurricane, ever before, in the history of man.

Oh yeah, when Sean Penn actually went out there for a photo op, in a little $100 boat, to act like he cared, when he could have financed 20 pros with proper equipment that would have done a 1000 times better job, and for what would be pocket change to him.

There is quite a bit about this that just disgusts me.

But I still wish good luck to the people of New Orleans now. (And yes if they do need help, we should help them.)

So far it looks like it isn’t as bad as it could’ve been. The levees are holding, but some are being topped.

Everybody does realize that if this were to blow over with minimal damage and every one were back in their homes and businesses next week that the democratic mayor would be praised for all the lessons he’s learned.

The only reason they would say it wasn’t a failure on GWB’s fault would be because it wasn’t bad enough to really need his help. If it turns out to be really bad it will definitely be another Bush failure and an instant campaign issue. Actually it will be a campaign issue of some kind in any case most likely.

This guy could be videotaped tearing off his shirt, diving into the raging water and pulling a barge full of stranded poor citizens to safety with his teeth and it would first be questioned whether it was actually him, then questioned whether it was somehow staged and then finally reported as the least he could do after causing the hurricane and killing all those people last time.

Trib, I heard this a couple of years ago:
The Pope visits Washington and President Bush takes him for a ride down the Potomac on the presidential yacht. They’re enjoying themselves when a gust of wind blows the Pope’s hat (zucchetto) off and out onto the water. The Secret Service begins to launch a boat but Bush waves them off saying, “Wait. I’ll take care of this.”

Bush steps off the yacht onto the surface of the water, walks out a ways and picks up the hat. Back on board, he hands the hat to the Pope amid stunned silence.

The next morning the Washington Post carries the story complete with photos under the heading “BUSH CAN’T SWIM”.

[quote]The Mage wrote:
Trib, I heard this a couple of years ago:
The Pope visits Washington and President Bush takes him for a ride down the Potomac on the presidential yacht. They’re enjoying themselves when a gust of wind blows the Pope’s hat (zucchetto) off and out onto the water. The Secret Service begins to launch a boat but Bush waves them off saying, “Wait. I’ll take care of this.”

Bush steps off the yacht onto the surface of the water, walks out a ways and picks up the hat. Back on board, he hands the hat to the Pope amid stunned silence.

The next morning the Washington Post carries the story complete with photos under the heading “BUSH CAN’T SWIM”.

[/quote]

I think the only thing truly comparable in recent memory to me is Ken Starr during the Lewinski debacle. I don’t think Newt even got hammered that hard. I told my wife once that we could have footage of Bill Clinton bludgeoning Ken Starr to death on the floor of the senate and the headlines would read “Kenneth Starr Soils Carpet of Senate Chamber”