Sunday, September 04, 2005
This morning’s Washington Post provides some damning facts that lay responsibility for the Katrina Hurricane mega-disaster on the President’s doorstep.
Here’s the shocking pith from a 4-page article on the intentional destruction of FEMA:
We have less capability today than we did on September 11," said a veteran FEMA official involved in the hurricane response. "We are so much less than what we were in 2000," added another senior FEMA official. "We've lost a lot of what we were able to do then."
When Chertoff took office earlier this year, he made his top priority an entirely new bureaucratic reorganization…taking away a key remaining function, preparedness planning, from FEMA…procedures for what to do when the inevitable disaster hit were also subjected to a bureaucratic overhaul, still unfinished.
Last Tuesday, as New Orleans was drowning…some department contractors found an important e-mail in their inboxes…Attached were two documents -- one more than 400 pages long -- that spelled out in numbing, acronym-filled detail the planned "national preparedness goal”…the documents were not a menu for action in the devastated Gulf Coast. They were drafts, not slated for approval and release until October.
[The Department of Homeland Security] emphasized terrorism at the expense of other threats, said several current and former senior department officials and experts…cutting funding for natural disaster programs and downgrading the responsibilities and capabilities of the previously well-regarded FEMA.
On the Friday before Katrina hit, when it was already a Category 2 hurricane rapidly gathering force in the Gulf, a veteran FEMA employee arrived at the newly activated Washington headquarters for the storm. Inside, there was surprisingly little action. "It was like nobody's turning the key to start the engine," the official recalled.
There has been substantial talk, on line, that the President and his government must leave office because of their calculated actions as regards FEMA and their coldly meretricious behavior toward the devastated survivors of Katrina.
I think that talk is more than justified.
Bush supporters will no doubt spin discussions toward isolated and improperly framed specifics such as the Echo Chamber’s intellectually bankrupt looting meme, but, in this case, it is the overall and currently continuing gestalt of Katrina that damns the Bush maladministration.
I, personally, am as heartsick as I was in the days following September 11, 2001.
I have followed this disaster closely and have personally witnessed via CNN and the Internet many of the events the Bush maladministration now claims not to have happened.
We all have witnessed these Bush modi operandi before, haven’t we?
And, with the timely death of Chief Justice Rehnquist, who knows what tricks are yet hidden up the elastic Bush sleeve?
No pitiful excuse or cowardly attempt to shift blame will succeed and, I think, should not be tolerated particularly in light of the orchestrated FEMA destruction outlined in this morning’s Washington Post.
Reports, again on line, from eyewitnesses and European news outlets clearly show the ballyhooed Bush visits to the hurricane areas were nothing more than heartlessly staged photo-ops geared toward fluffing our over-fluffed and naked emperor.
Already, this Sunday morning I have witnessed various craven talking heads, specifically Campbell Brown and Cokie Roberts, who ludicrously claimed to have “been involved in this from the beginning”, assist the Bushies in another feeble attempt to shift blame to state and local officials and, of course, the poor benighted hurricane survivors.
As I’ve said in several blog comment areas, Katrina is America’s Yeltsin on the Tank moment, a time when vast numbers of Americans are seeing though the fog of a controlled media to the charade of national leadership.
I know we can proceed with the unprecedented removal of a President and his government in an orderly manner and in a manner that celebrates our Founders, our constitution and our Freedoms.
Remember, this is a holiday weekend where we should be reminded of our own particular forefathers, their sacrifices and their blood.
We, all of us, owe our past and the living document of our Constitution the continued promise of a truly American future.
Modified Image: LA Times, White House