Saturday, September 03, 2005

...and now the darts...

The Philadelphia Inquirer (9/2) editorialized that "human deeds can mitigate a disaster, or can make it worse." Let's review:

Dart and Laurel Combination: To Mayor Ray Nagin, who called for an evacuation a week ago, but should have started three days earlier. According to Scott Shane and Eric Lipton of the New York Times News Service, the city's hurricane plan said it might take 72 hours for residents to leave. And planners evidently didn't account for elderly and poor people who didn't have any way of leaving (no car, no relatives, etc.). But to those who said Nagin was nothing like former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, consider this: 9/11 in New York City was a horrible event, but was geographically contained to several blocks. Approximately 90% of New Orleans is under water. The Army Corps of Engineers estimates it may take 80 days to pump out that water, or longer.

Dart: To the looters, rapists, snipers, murderers and carjackers. You suck.

Dart: To U.S. Rep Maxine Waters (D-CA), who justified the looting during the Los Angeles riots. Any storeowners in New Orleans who had their stores looted may submit bills to:
Congresswoman Maxine Waters
2344 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

Note: There's been a lot of discussion about the difference between scavaging and looting. I'd provide links, but since I haven't had access to the net, you'll have to google for yourself. Some stores simply handed out as much food, water and diapers as they could, once it became apparent they would be flooded out. Other stores started price gouging. And then you had the looting, which is still going on, though the presence of the National Guard is reducing that. I can see stealing food (Les Miserables), but stealing VCRs, TVs and DVD players shouldn't be condoned.

Dart: To President Bush, who said this wasn't a time to point fingers. Really? His Iraq experiment pulled National Guard members away from Gulf states, and away from being able to help just where they're needed most. There should be no reason Pennsylvania has to send 2600 members of its Guard to the Gulf to help out. And not fully funding Army Corps of Engineers proposals for strengthening the levees in New Orleans didn't help, either. In 2004, Bush was in Florida at warp speed to dispense hurricane relief in an election year, and in a state he needed to win. This year, it took days for the National Guard to arrive in New Orleans - some people died outside and inside the Superdome and Convention Center because help didn't get there fast enough.

Dart: To Republican ideologues. Bill Bennett's radio show went on and on about how we're seeing looters, and single women with children, and how it's obvious that a decline of values and family structure is at the root of the violence we see there. That, and how all the druggies stayed behind to loot pharmacies to deal with not being able to get a fix in over a week.

Dart: To U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL), who questioned the logic of spending billions to rebuild New Orleans, then had to issue a "clarification" that of course he supported rebuilding, but with the safety of residents in mind to prevent a future disaster. If tornadoes had leveled 90% of Hastert's district, somehow I don't think he'd be questioning if a rebuilding effort would be worth it.

Dart: To Democrat ideologues such as Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who quickly made inane comments like Katrina was God's punishment for having Haley Barbour, former RNC Chair, as Governor of Mississippi. Idiot.

Let's fix the problem, people.


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