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September 03, 2005

Comments

Sue

I will bite, on this comment, being that I am one of the conservatives you and Cheryl seem to hate so much.

I believe that not one single person could have imagined nor prevented nor been completely ready for the double whammy on New Orleans. I also don't believe that enough people could be rounded up in time to save EVERYONE in the 5 states that get hit from the nearly category 5 hurricane, and later monumental costal flooding.

All that said. I do think we deserve to know what was happening and when in the first 2 days, including the day of the hurricane. I don't expect the administration to tell me every cotton picking detail, but I want some real truthful timeline of what was going on.

It is hard for regular fold US citizens to know what is really going on militarily and in federal level of government (or really any government level). I mean really. What politician is straight up honest in the middle of chaos. They cannot show us everything that is discussed and bantied about. Let's get real on that. Blaming the president for the hurricane is silly and stupid. Blaming one single human being for a natural occuring meterological event isn't logical or reasonable.

Now blaming several White House administrations for not working on hurricane proofing all costal regions, now that is stupid. But you cannot blame one president, one that you hate with every fiber of your being, for something that had been brewing to happen over many years, even decades.

Ask any trained meterologist (I listened to two in my area) and they say hurricane seasons have cycles of lives, and we are in an active cycle that may take a few more years to live out its lifespan. Then it will be calm, we won't have category 3, 4 or 5 hurricanes for several years in a row and then it will gradually get bad again. They only have 40-50 of real raw meterological data in the books, before that the data is sketchy. And prior to late 1800s there was no data. So who is to say before President Washington walked this great Union/Nation that there weren't moments in Earth's history that there were really bad seasons of terrible catastrophic hurricanes. No one can prove or disprove that. It is just logical that to notice that given the last 100 years of data, one can logically assume that these things happen in cycles.

Get over the conspiracy theories.

What is most important now is saving as many lives, cleaning up the areas hit, and rebuilding what needs rebuilding. Getting people into permanent shelter and jobs and getting back to a normal way of life, even if it is in a different city or state. And America needs to care of its own citizens.

That's all I gotta say.

God Bless those directly affected by these catastrophes.
And God Bless America.

Sue

the exile

See my comment a couple of posts below about the trolls being out in force because the White House realizes the political trouble they are in. "Sue" strikes me as extremely intelligent, reasonable, and well-informed. Any troll who still believes that "not one single person could have imagined nor prevented" a scenario that WAS predicted virtually down to the last detail, could not possibly be as well-educated as "Sue." My only possible conclusion is that "Sue" is a covert RNC operative paid to troll liberal blogs and get out the talking points. And kudos for quite a competent attempt at an impossible job.

the exile

Just in case I was unfair, "Sue" does have a point that focussing on Administration culpability in the levee's failure is a bit of a hard sell. Surely there is lots of blame to go around, and nothing that anyone could have done would be a 100% hardfast guarantee against levee failure. The criminal negligence is in the slowness of the relief response. Exactly this scenario had been predicted. A detailed response plan should have been in place, and implementation of that plan could have begun 3 days before the storm hit. Troops and helicopters could have been sitting in Baton Rouge waiting to see where they would be needed. Ships could have set sail from Norfolk 3 days before as well. Why didn't it happen? How can you attribute it to anything OTHER than FEMA's incompetence under the leadership of untrained political hack Brown, and the fact that the whole frigging US government was on vacation?

Cheryl

OK, let's pick this rotten apple apart one lie at a time.

First, Clinton's FEMA head warned about the levees, and National Geographic did a special on it last year. Clinton's FEMA budget included funding to strengthen the levees, and Bush cut the funding to give tax breaks to his billionaire buddies and fund propaganda (yes Bush engaged in federally funded propaganda which is a felony) to sell his Social Security wall street bailout plan. If you do not believe that Bush engaged in federally funded propaganda, just call the Social Security administration and ask them to put you on hold. You will hear propaganda advising you that investing your defined benefit SS contributions into risky Wall Street is a good plan. Remember Guckert, that Republican gay male prostitute who was popping you in the ass with his Bush fawning? Remember the Office of Special Plans that put together that laughably fake yellow cake uranium document for Dick Cheney with all the misspellings of French words and all the confused signatures by Nigerian government officials who had retired a decade earlier (which of the right wingers was assigned to Nigeria a decade ago? Was it one of Daddy Bush's friends, perhaps that Jose Posada guy who is a terrorist and is being coddled by Bush Junior to keep him shut up?)

Second, Bush deployed National Guard to Iraq to aid in the occupation. Not only did the guard go, but the humvees, the emergency genrators, and even the amphibious vehicles went to allow them to cross the Tigris river. That left New Orleans and the rest of the country wide open to natural disasters of all kinds.

What is the mission of the guard in Iraq? Well, we could take a guess based on the oil production. Before the fall of Baghdad, Bush warned Hussein not to destroy oil wells. After the fall of Baghdad, Halliburton marched in to restart the pumps. The amount of oil that was pumped, as well as the payments made to the treasury to Iraq (if any) in exchange for that oil, were immediately classified. Later, the oil was not even metered until the grumblings in the European press got too loud, and then the meters were turned back on again. All the figures are still classified and no one knows if the Bush administration has paid a single penny for any of that oil that they have stolen.

Third, your right-wing pals at Fox News are trying to convince us that New Orleans is full of ignorant niggers who chose to live below sea level and then began looting like animals when the levees broke. In a sense they are right. It was in fact the niggers who got left behind when all the wealthy whites fled, and now that they have been rotting for three days without anyone lifting a finger to help them of course the niggers are looting because there is no food and water to sustain them.

Anyone like Sue who claims that this was an unpredictable disaster and that no one could have done anything about it is either a pawn or evil. There is nothing flattering to say about people who walk around making excuses for criminal negligence, thievery, racism and genocide. And I am not even going to elaborate on the Enron looting of the California treasury or all of the short stock sales in American Airlines and United Airlines just before 9/11 that were processed by Deutche Bank and which no one has ever investigated.

Sue, if you are not a billionaire, you are a dupe. Give it up. The Republicans do not care about you. You are not part of their club and not a single one of them would stoop down to give you the time of day. Why do you let them use you like this? Are you a masochist?

I do not hate you, Sue. I love you. I will pray for your soul. I seem to recall that you are a Christian, or at least claim to be one. In that case, I have some interesting trivia for you to examine. We are in fact in the last days just before Armageddon, and I have proof.

There is a web site that explains why Bush is the antichrist. It is based on numerology. For example, take Bush's name (the original German):

George Walker Busche
666

Yes, that's right, Busche has six letters in each of his names.

The numerology evidence is overwhelming. Try out

Bush is the Antichrist

After seeing 666 pop up a dozen times when using all the ancient numerology methods to examine our current president, you will have to concede that this is not coincidence. Busche is in fact the antichrist, and these are the end times. And you are in league with the devil.

Need more proof? Busche admitted that he wants to be a dictator, and one of his first major acts was to dissolve our constitution with the Patriot Act. He has more convicted felons in his top-level cabinet than the Mafia does.

Want more proof? Busche's grandfather was a banker for Adolf Hitler.

Want more proof? Busche's family history leasds back to the last emperor of Rome.

That's right, we are being ruled by a descendant of Caesar whose family is entangled with fascists. I seem to recall something about Caesar having been one of the 13 horns of the Antichrist. I also seem to recall that Hitler is somehow entangled with the antichrist.

Busche laughed about capital punishment, he gleefully chuckled and smirked when Carla Faye Tucker found religion and repented. He executed more people as governor of Texas than any other US governor.

And guess what else? It is no secret that Busche is dumb and that he was several inches shorter than Giore. That is why he is the antichrist. The last horn of the antichrist is the short one, the stunted one, the stupid one.

After World War II, the US not only tried the Nazi generals for war crimes, the US also imported all the Nazi scientists to work on the space program. NASA's first director was an ex-Nazi. NASA, having put spy sattelites up all over the place, is now in the process of adding nuclear-powered X-ray weapons in space to shoot down Chinese spy sattelites. this way the US can invade any country in the world with the aid of sattelite photos. All of the targets can be identified in advance and all the strategic targest such as bombs, ainti-aircraft batteries, planes, tanks and bunkers can be destroyed before the ground troops move in.

That's rigth, the US is home to the antichrist. German banks with ties to Nazis and drug money laundering selling stock short before 9/11, descendants of Caesar with their fingers on the nuclear button, Nazis running around all over the place. The US is home to the Fourth Reich.

Sue, wake up girl. Your immortal soul is in jeapordy, You are in league with the devil. The proof is incontrovertible. You are going straight to hell unless you repent and begin working for the just side.

It should be self-evident to you, but I know that Satan can be seductive. Vote for me and I will make you rich with tax cuts. Be my mouthpiece and I will send you to immortal bliss. Vote for me and I will protect your innocent babies from the evil abortionists. Vote for me and I will give you a Hummer for life.

You see already that Busche senior and junior have contaminated all of Iraq with depleted Uranium, poisoning the entire country with a half-life of 5 billion years. Busche Senior did the same to Afghanistan. What kind of righteous ruler poisons the earth for eternity? What kind of just ruler makes gleeful jokes about capital punishment?

Give it up, Sue. Wake up. I will pray for you. I have little hope that you will repent. Your writings show that you do not listen. Satan has deafened you. He has punctured your spiritual eardrums and you are stone deaf. Still I will pray for you in the hope that your soul may be saved by some miracle.

Now maybe you have some idea what it means to be condescended to. Read about the antichrist, Sue. Search your soul and ask yourself which side you are really on.

I give you odds of 1 billion to one that you will see the light. One chance in a billion is all that a billionaire dupe has. You have to extricate yourself from all that money first, and only one of those bills has your salvation on it. Know which one it is?

The last one.

That is right. Jesus was poor. Jesus condemned the rich. Something about camels and needles, I believe. Something about helping the poor, I believe.

In order to save your soul you will need to give away every single one of those billions of dollars that are singing that siren song to you. I know why you vote Republican, Sue. It is your greed. You need to cure your greed to get to heaven.

I will pray for you. Give up your greed. Give up your hummer. Give up your dream of infinite conquest and the kingdom of God spreading theocracy throughout the US.

Everything you believe in is a lie. If you want to save innocent babies from abortion, you will have to start improving the standard of living of the poor. That means income redistribution. There is no other way to help desperate people but to help them. Punishing them with restrictive laws works against your aims. Punishing people with aristocratic cruelty sends you straight to hell.

It is incontrovertible. There is nothing to deebate. You are wrong. Wake up.

Sue

Cheryl, when I posted my remarks, I did not know of all the stuff that came up in discussions galore on Fox, CNN, this blog, other blogs, local papers, etc etc. I am not as educated as some, but I am not a Republican either. I don't side with a political party.

I am reactionary in my thoughts and words and deeds. Sometimes to my own detriment.

Since last posting I have learned the following from various sources, mostly my local talk radio station.

1) yes there were studies done and the levees were good for up to a Category 3 hurricane. (my question will always be: how big, how long, how wide must a levee be or a series of levees be to ensure a Category 5 hurricane cannot damage it? I don't know much about levees, engineering and the like, so I have no other comment than I just don't know if we could have built the PERFECT levee system that wouldn't get wrecked by any natural disaster)

2) The GOVERNOR is the only one that has the authority to ask for Federal help, not the mayor. And the Federal folks cannot come in and force people out of there homes because of a natural disaster. The MAYOR has primary authority of 1st Responders, not the Governor nor the President. (the first thing I like to know is what are the facts, and everyone was up blaming the President and this guy and that and apparently, they did not know the responsiblity and order of things in an Emergency such as this. I didn't either, but I did not immediately blame the President for everything going on.)

3) There are cycles to the climates in the Northern Hemisphere and there are several years in a row where the surface water temp builds up even 1 degree higher than normal and that can cause a decade worth of hurricanes in the Atlantic. The stuff I read says that this year, and last year, could be attributed to both global warming and natural occilation cycles of warm water and air currents. (again, another scientific area I am not that educated in, so I cannot even begin to guess or know the truth.)

4) I understand that there wasn't nearly as much damage from the hurricane per se as in NOLA as there was in Mississippi. After the main winds died down and the storm surge was over, most of the city was apparently still standing pretty good (kind of a generalization, I know. Surely those on the coastline had damage and problems). Neither the mayor nor the Governor said too much. IT wasn't until after the levees broke that all hell happened. There were 2000 buses that the mayor's city ordinances (some kind of city guidelines for emergency evacuations) that strictly said that the school buses were supposed to be used to evacuate people in the depressed sections of the city. They were not used , and they are now under water. (I consider that one of the main reasons for deaths from the flooding -- the mayor wasn't on his game like Rudy Guiliani was in NYC on 9/11/01).

5) The president met with the mayor and the Governor after the levees brokes, and the mayor said that he told the two of them to get their acts together and come up with a solution. This was on Airforce 1. Apparently the President told the Governor of LA that she had every federal thing available to help her state, and she balked for 24hrs. She was the only one with the power to get and direct the federal help available and she did not for whatever reason. (this is another huge area of disgrace in this tragedy, and most tv programs are not discussing this woman's responsibility at all).

6) finally about the looters -- there are many poor people that lived in NOLA. Many go back and forth from prison to the city streets, back and forth. And so the climate in the inner city there is probably worse than most other big US cities. High Crime and lots of oppressed peoples. (I don't blame govt for all things that poor people do or deal with, sometimes people just make their own bad choices, it is not everyone else's fault). The media reported many times that there were people passing up the food and water and going straight for the big screen TVs. The reporters' cameraguys followed these people into the store and you could see this for yourself. That lawlessness I do not understand. I am white, yes, I have never been that poor, yes. But I have never stolen anything from a store for any reason, even when my family was on foods stamps for 7 years long time ago. I had to work for my own stuff, my own clothes, my own radios, and car, and so forth. I never thought that I could get rich off the govt, that they owed me something. I didn't like the free govt food we got. I worked so as not to eat that stuff. My point is that there were some bad guys in NOLA that took advantage of the situation, and stole things that were not theirs (I can overlook stealing food and water for the hungry) and then stole guns and raped women and girls at night. How can any of this activity be someone else's fault? There are black leaders in every state that came up from nothing, poor as Church mice, and they didn't lie and steal to get ahead. Most people that lie and steal their whole lives never get ahead.

That's all I got.

Cheryl

Congratulations Sue. You completely ignored my comment.

I am not superstitious and I am not so duplicitous as to claim that I do not have a party allegiance that I clearly do have. You however I perceive as being both superstitious and two-faced.

So, did you bother to read about the antichrist? What do you think? As a religious person, do you believe in revelation and rapture? If so, how do you explain the fact that Bush is incontrovertibly the antichrist yet is in charge of the USA under the auspices of the Republican party, the Party of God as they like to think of themselves?

Your silence is deafening. I will leave this one, you obviously are not listening. If I were a Christian I would have no choice but to apostate myself the hell out of here.

So let's move on. If you are not partisan, why have you adopted the Republican version of the 'facts'?

You admit that your 'facts' come from your local talk radio station, yet seem oblivious to the dilemma of recycled spin. There is no original reporting going on in the US. Fox news and corporate media under GE etc. set the tone and it just echoes around the country forever. If you want another view you have to go outside the US or hit the leftist internet radio stations. There is no other independent voice in the US. Maybe Media Matters or Common Dreams might enlighten you, that is if you have a soul left to save.

As for you 'facts', let's take them on one at a time.

1) the 'Perfect' levee is a 'perfect' talking point. Let's dispense with the extreme rhetoric. Bush cut the funding that was supposed to be used to protect Americans by fixing the levees. I don't care what the technical details are. He cut the funding and put American lives at risk in the process.

2) Under the Patriot Act, the federal government can do any damn thing it wants to protect the public, including forcefully vaccinating us against our will with no legal recourse to sue anyone if we are harmed. That was the whole pont of the patriot act, to abolish the constitution. Why then did Bush not use the patriot act to protect the poor black citizens of New Orleans? (Answer: because he does not care about them).

Rove claimed that Blanco did not declare a state of emergency. From the Washington Post:

By Manuel Roig-Franzia and Spencer Hsu Washington Post Staff Writers Sunday, September 4, 2005; Page A01 As of Saturday, Blanco still had not declared a state of emergency, the senior Bush official said."

Saturday was September 3rd. Contrast Rove's propaganda, repeated verbatim by the Post with no cross-checking, with the facts as the world knows them on August 26th:

Press Release Date: 8/26/2005


Contact:Denise Bottcher or Roderick Hawkins at 225-342-9037


GOVERNOR BLANCO DECLARES STATE OF EMERGENCY

BATON ROUGE, LA--Governor Kathleen Babineaux Blanco today issued Proclamation No. 48 KBB 2005, declaring a state of emergency for the state Louisiana as Hurricane Katrina poses an imminent threat, carrying severe storms, high winds, and torrential rain that may cause flooding and damage to private property and public facilities, and threaten the safety and security of the citizens of the state of Louisiana.

This is pasted from Louisiana's web site and dated several days before the hurricane even made landfall. So you simply have your facts wrong, as does the press. You could have found this fact with one Google search like I did, but instead you troll your right-wing talk radio. Face facts, Sue, the media is fascist propaganda, even the Washington Post is in on it now.

3) If you plan on blaming the hurricane on global warming, better mention that Bush walked out on Kyoto. I hope the GOP is not wasting too much money on you, you suck at this game.

4) As far as this school bus lie is concerned, try out the facts for a change:

ABC's Stephanopoulos repeated school bus falsehood spread by Pruden, Hannity, and Gingrich

On September 11, ABC host George Stephanopoulos repeated a falsehood that had reverberated through the right-wing media the preceding week -- that "there were 2,000 buses under water" that New Orleans Mayor C. Ray Nagin could have used to evacuate his city before Hurricane Katrina's arrival. The claim appears to have originated in a September 6 column by Washington Times editor-in-chief Wesley Pruden, who inaccurately charged that, although Nagin ordered a mandatory evacuation before the hurricane's arrival, he "kept the city's 2,000 school buses parked and locked in neat rows when there was still time to take the refugees to higher ground."...

As of 2003, the most recent year for which data appears to be available, the Orleans Parish school district, which operates New Orleans' public schools, owned only 324 school buses. In addition, a Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development profile of the New Orleans Regional Transit Authority (RTA), last updated May 5, notes that RTA owned 364 public buses, bringing the total of the city's public transit and school buses to fewer than 700 (assuming the fleet of school buses has not been dramatically increased since 2003), far fewer than the 2,000 Pruden claimed...

According to a September 5, 2003, article in the New Orleans Times-Picayune, "The [Orleans Parish school] district owns 324 buses but 70 are broken down."...

"Even if the entire fleet was used," the Times-Picayune noted, "the buses would carry only about 22,000 people out of the city -- far short of the 134,000 people estimated to be without cars in a recent University of New Orleans study." Even the addition of the full school bus fleet would have been far from sufficient to transport the remaining residents.

Moreover, The New York Times noted that a number of New Orleans buses were in use as the hurricane approached: "But Chester Wilmot, an L.S.U. [Louisiana State University] civil engineering professor who studies evacuation plans, said the city successfully improvised. He said witnesses described seeing city buses shuttle residents to the Superdome before Hurricane Katrina struck."...

So in your version of the facts, 200 school buses magically multiply into 2,000 school buses. It appesars that ABC is now goose-stepping right along with the rest of the fascists. Honestly, Sue, are you a dupe or what?

5) As far as this 'meeting' with the president-not is concerned, here is what the Post reported that the locals (who do not have the authority to speak publicly) thought of it:

Behind the scenes, a power struggle emerged, as federal officials tried to wrest authority from Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco (D). 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.

Given the magnitude of the fuck-up on the federal level, I think they made the right call.

6) As far as people "passing up food and water and going straight for the big screen TV's" is concerned, I am sure that the media found at least one or two examples of blacks running off with televisions and repeated them ad nauseum on the nightly news. Everyone knows that blacks would rather have televisions than food. Honestly Sue.

Did you see any reporting on the small group that had organized food distribution on high ground in the middle of a highway bridge and had managed to help dozens of others besides themselves, but who were disbanded by FEMA because the visual imagery of the locals lifting themselves up by their own bootstraps was making Bush look bad? No of course not...

I tire of debunking these lies, myths and stereotypes. Go crawl back under your rock please.

Cheryl

Oh yes, one more juicy tidbit:

"Most people that lie and steal their whole lives never get ahead."

I almost choked on my granola bar when I read that. You are incredibly naive.

Most people who get ahead do it by lying and stealing. It is only those who aspire to nothing higher than being a good citizen who meekly follow the rules, and we share a similar fate to those who lie and steal but do it badly. We never get ahead. That is why we are all in debt and one paycheck away from a medical disaster. Have you not been paying attention?

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