. I hereby assume the role of wise guy, back seat driver, fool's bellweather,
and couch potato know it all (and I do). It is clear to me at this time that
there are not enough whiners and complainers like myself. 'Not nearly enough
poorly thought thru advice. And so in my esteemed and cocky opinion in New
Orleans I declare:
"Bush did it right."
. Everyone else called in sick.
With disasters it is imperative that local leaders step up and form command
centers with early high level meetings to identify and marshall local
leadership; to evaluate resources and missing
resources; to begin stop gap measures; and to marshal major
volunteer deployment and enthusiasm. High school and college students often
form the front line of these efforts and they often consist of
setting up safe zones, establishing radio communications to the
stricken community (and to volunteers), eliminating health
hazards, coordinating distribution of supplies and doing the
grunt work of establishing the conditions for rebuilding using
youth, volunteers and available materials. This is not the Federal government's
business unless the disaster has literally
wiped everyone off the map (perhaps a close call in this one). But even then:
Uncle Sam usually does loan assurance, emergency food
and water, lockdown and MP duties, & maybe bulldozing and mass transit where
needed. Bush did his job (and since I really dislike Bush it galls me to say
it). He did it fast. He sent the right size response based on recommendations.
FEMA is a communications tool, thats all they were ever designed or asked to be!
Floodlit safe zones should have been created by local leaders within a short
boat ride of every house and boats should
have quickly approached & surveyed and secured several hundred thousand
residences(and then should have stayed in place). None of this happened.
Instead Red Cross stepped in and did what it could.
A loose infrastructure of boat fanatics should have appeared in every
neighborhood going door (or roof to roof) to door to door. Eventually they did!
But local leaders failed to coordinate, waiting instead for God or country.
Floatilla's of tankers full of sand should have
quickly sealed the levies and we should have seen thousands of volunteers and
seagoing cranes working on those levies not federal helicopters. The Fed
stepped in and did the job, did it fast, did it right.
So what happened???
This is not about politics. Several one hundred year floods hit
Fort Wayne, Indiana and each time the response was nearly
perfect under Democrat leadership. When the Mississippi floods
hit Iowa it washed away whole cities but the responses were
good under Republican & Democrat leadership, about as good as could be
expected. In New Orleans police "chiefs"
were begging for leadership on national TV two days after the flood. Whoops!
These are the leaders. Leading was their job. They didn't do it! The Feds
are/was/were/will be the backup guys. They did/are doing/will do their job.
In one complaint compatable radios were not in the hands of people at a life
threatening scene. Helicopters could not talk to the ground. You know who
releases those radios and usually decides what frequencies and equipment to
use??, the city. Talk of graft and boondoggle has surrounded the stories of
levy non-maintenance, with hundreds of millions of fed dollars never reaching
target.. So why not nationalize the levy system. Why should gangs of good old
boy thugs be rewarded for killing tens of thousands of people?? I vote we bop
Good job George Bush!