Thursday, September 01, 2005

Hurricane Bush

You may have heard or read about W cutting funds for levee repair and upkeep for New Orleans to prevent against a flood disaster that was widely known to be just a matter of time. Editor and Publisher writes that beginning in 2003, "the flow of federal dollars toward" flood control in Southeast Louisiana "dropped to a trickle." The Army Corps of Engineers "never tried to hide the fact that the spending pressures of the war in Iraq, as well as homeland security -- coming at the same time as federal tax cuts -- was the reason for the strain." In addition, "at least nine articles in the Times-Picayune from 2004 and 2005 specifically cite the cost of Iraq as a reason for the lack of hurricane- and flood-control dollars." The Washington Post also explains that under W, FEMA has been, in effect, systematically downgraded and all but dismantled by the Department of Homeland Security.

I'm not going to blame New Orleans becoming Lake New Orleans on W but no doubt he shares the blame with any and all officials who were in a position to fund the upkeep, maintenance and re-building of those levees and didn't. It's much sexier to stand in front of troops and fancy flat-screens and computer terminals at some national threat center than to fix a wall. How about build a second or third barrier like the Dutch did to protect the Netherlands? Too late. It's the roads, bridges, levees and other infrastructure that needs some attention - not tax cuts for Paris Hilton.

How about this - what else isn't being fixed that may end up killing a bunch of people here? And adding insult to injury, Bill O'Lielly of Faux News said last night we can't pay to fix these things because "we are already taxed up to our eyeballs." Amazing. We have billions and billions to reconstruct Falluja but not New Orleans. Simply amazing. By Friday night Faux News will be blaming Clinton, (both of them), the New York Times, and maybe even Cindy Sheehan.

So after years of degrading levees and FEMA why is it any surprise that tsunami-like flooding occurs and the disaster response is slow, ineffective and on par with Banda Aceh, Indonesia? It's a disgrace. What does this say about the ability of the federal government to response to large scale disasters? It says you are on your own. Any outrage by the media? Nope. They endlessly talk about looters stealing crackers and peanut butter for survival and give attention to some wealthy couple who paid $3,700 to get junior a limo ride back to suburban Glencoe near Chicago.

Since most of the residents of New Orleans can't hire a limo to drive them to one of the wealthiest suburbs in America maybe some attention should be given to how this happened and why there was no disaster plan to implement. The people of New Orleans deserve better whether they voted for W or not. And the people of Mississippi deserve better even though they did vote for W. We all deserve better. Doubt we'll get it from W who values a man with a "good heart" rather than a logical, scientific and thoughtful brain.

BONUS POSTING: A Hong Kong jury Thursday convicted an American of murdering her wealthy investment banker husband by drugging him with a milkshake laced with sedatives and then beating him to death. My wife wanted and just bought a smoothie maker presumably for cranky jr. Should I be worried?


Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

Smoothy maker? I wonder what a Curmoodgie looks like?

10:25 AM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

But seriously - the Letters section in the papers are already filling up with people insisting Bush can't be blamed and it's the fault of people who live near the sea. Sounds funny because everyone who wrote those letters lives near the sea in a hurricane zone, but such is the mind of a Bush Supporter.

Their loyalty to the F├╝hrer is endless and their loyalty to America is non-esistent.

12:07 PM  
Blogger d.K. said...

I read the NY Times today, otherwise all I know is what I saw on CNN international. I have a lot of catching up to do. This is always a good place to start.

12:50 PM  
Blogger Petunia McGillicuddy said...

I still read your blog regularly, I just never know what to say. I am rendered mute.

1:53 PM  
Blogger Cranky's Wife said...

Maybe it's not Jr. I'm trying to poison (heh, heh)!!

2:44 PM  
Blogger Crankyboy said...

The "presumably" reference implies that I'm the target.

2:46 PM  
Blogger Petunia McGillicuddy said...

smoothies are great! but this is a smoothie-maker, not a blender?

9:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"shibboleth", until yesterday I had never seen or heard of this word.Very surprising coming from me the great uniter. I read the word twice yesterday.Coming in on the train I was reading Jim Cramer's (Mad Money) book Sane investing. He used the word and I was going to look it up, forgot to and then saw it on the Curmudgeon. Six degrees of separation between DEMs and GOPs here or just plain coincidence? You be the judge? Thoughts from the twilight zone. HR

11:28 AM  

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