Friday, 2 September 2005

Vote Nagin!

"We authorised $8bn to go to Iraq, lickety spit. After 9/11 we gave the president unauthorised powers, lickety spit, to take care of New York and other places,"

"Now you mean to tell me that a place where most of your oil is coming through, a place that is so unique... that you can't figure out a way to authorise the resources that we need?"

"I don't know whose problem it is, I don't know whether it's the governor's problem, I don't know whether it's the president's problem, but somebody needs to get their asses on the plane and sit down the two of them and figure this out, right now."

"This is ridiculous. I don't want to see anyone doing any more goddamn press conferences. Put a moratorium on press conferences. Don't do another press conference until the resources are in this city and they come down to this city and stand with us when there are military trucks and troops which we can't even count."

This bloke get's my vote.

12 careful considerations:

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Angie said...

The Mayor of New Orleans is beyond pissed at this point. He has been let down by his own government. We all have been. And thing is, we shouldn't be surprised. We have been time and time again. But to see it happening, to this degree, when people so desperately need help. Damn it's just wrong!! People are dying on the fucking streets!! And help is not there.

But in saying that, I heard that there are trucks on the way. I haven't seen that confirmed yet tho. I'm still searching news articles. I wish I had a damn tv here at work.

Nogbad said...

There was a very interesting guy interviewed on a BBC radio channel earlier and I can't find his name. He is an advisor to Kofi Annan and is reckoned to be one of the most influential economists in the world (ha's an American). he was totally damning about fiscal policy under bush and made the point that this administration veto'd plans to spend money on sea defences along the Gulf coast. He also pointed out that the US spends 3 cents in every 100 dollars on aid but 5 dollars per 100 on the military (the US is the lowest per capita donor to foreign aid in the developed world). He made these points to support his assertion that the current US Government has lost the plot in a big way - evidence of that abounds right now I'd say.

Wendy said...

Exactly! Teh mayor of N.O. is kicking hiney now. Finally someone is willing to put it out there and act like a human and not a drone.

Nogbad said...

A suggestion growing (here at least) is that if the refugees were white & middle class aid might have got there sooner.

Some of the eye-witness reports are horrific - no doubt the news there is filled with similar stuff; those poor people dying in hospitals without power or water, gang rapes, shootings, police officers handing in their badges. A guy was interviewed to say that his son and some other foreign students had been taken out of the drome for their own safety - the police were concerned that violence would be directed at them as they aren't American.

Somebody somewhere is going to have to answer some very tricky questions when this lot is over with. How does the richest and most powerful country the world has ever seen screw up so badly when it comes to helping it's own people?

Interesting too that Bush has said that the efforts so far are not acceptable - who is to blame for that? Didn't one president have a sign on his desk saying "The buck stops here"? Mebbe Bush has one with an arrow pointing to one side saying "It's his fault!" or "It was like this when I got here" or "Some big boys did it and ran away!"

Angie said...

One of bush's people has already said, and asked to not be named, that you can't blame bush for this mess, it's the hurricanes fault. bush constantly/consistently refuses to accept responsibility for how he is running this country (should be ruining really). It is so incredibly heartwrenching to see this happen and know there is absolutely nothing you can do. Yes you can donate money, but it doesn't feel as tho that is enough. I want to be there helping. Not sitting here venting.

Echo Mouse said...

He'd get my vote too. That was fantastic. I heard it online, the full 11 minutes. Seems it wasn't long after that rant that the national guard started to arrive.

Nogbad said...

I listened to it too - and had a tear in my eye when he broke down. This guy cares - it seems that many do - but didn't have the tools to sort it out.

Squid Vicious said...

So where was HIS contengency plan? What did HE do to provide for his people? "Go to the Pooperdome" is not an emergency action plan...

Laban said...

Nogbad - stop regurgitating all the anti-Bush stuff from the BBC please and read up about the seperation of powers between State and Federal govt. In my understanding GWB had no power to order an evacuation of NO.

I'm impressed with the way you suggest racism among the rescuers ('if the refugees were white & middle class') while ignoring it amongh some 'victims'. According to their own testimony the Brits weren't targeted because of their nationality but because of their skin colour.

Any more blogging like this and I shall have to beat the silver medal and summon Grolliffe the Ice Dragon from beyond the Glass Mountains.

Nogbad said...

Sorry Laban - I'll dump the anti-Bush BBC stuff (except the Nagin interview is PD and available from any source). Of course not relying on the BBC still leaves the other mainstream media in the UK and Europe and the rest of the world so that's no big loss. In fact the posting further up is based on the Sunday's rather then the terribly biased BBC.

The separation of powers certainly would stop the Federal government ordering an evacuation before the hurricane hit, it looks as though the local plans for evacuation were poor at best and based on the false premise that people would actually heed it (added to this there are stories that the evacuation notices were only available in English) - Nagin has a lot of questions to answer too. Where the Federal government went badly wrong is the slow and poorly planned response from FEMA - an agency established to deal with exactly this type of energency but now subverted to respond mainly to terrorist attack. It should be inconceivable that it took twice the length of time to start delivering aid to part of a developed country than it did to Asia in response to the tsunami. Factor in that the hurricane was expected and the country is the US and it defies belief that the response was so poor. I've seen a few half-hearted attempts at explaining it but ultimately it's a cock-up of immense proportions and it cost lives. Of course there are any number of postings around suggesting that none of this is Bush's fault (and they usually have lots of CAPITAL LETTERS OftEn in the wRONg places - maybe this adds credibility, I'm not sure) but when the President gets the keys to the White House and Air Force One he also gets some responsibilities too - one of them is protecting the citizens. We used to have a similar system here didn't we? I have a feeling that Blair and co got rid of it a while ago.

Good call on the rascism - the first reports I saw on this didn't mention skin colour so it would have been silly to presume. It is now clear that being white was a big risk factor for the non-US students in the Superdome (and possibly for other whites in that environment). In terms of the wider issue it now seems that skin colour is a red herring and the mistake these poor people in the convention centre and the Superdome made was being poor. There are reports that wealthy people (regardless of skin colour) were given preferential treatment when it came to getting out of town. Again it's unlikely that any of these points will be supported in any official reports. My only safety advice would be that anyone travelling might wish to avoid being black AND poor just in case. I've seen lots of comments that these people brought hardship on themselves because they didn't leave when told to but I think that misses a large number of issues as well as being distasteful.

Regarding Grolliffe - I'm surprised you weren't aware that the threat posed by Ice Dragons is no longer extant! Firstly Blunkett - when Home Secretary - imposed the EU regulation regarding HASWA and the effect of working with ice. This restricted anyone working with ice to a working week of 32.75 hours or a working month of 145.72 hours. Being innumerate meant that Grolliffe struggled to meet these requirements. Subsequent changes to border controls also made it harder for Grolliffe to enter the UK. Without an EU passport Grolliffe's only way of getting here was hanging off the axles of 40' trailers full of sweatshop produced Wonderbras. Once he made it the latest tax on anyone with green skin and wings made it expensive to get around. He's moved from beyond the Glass Mountains and now owns a bar on Zante. He serves cheap booze around the clock and kicks seven shades out of anyone who starts a fight.