Katrina 2005

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Re: Katrina 2005

Postby Schmeelkie » Mon Oct 24, 2005 1:02 pm

Looks like Wilma is almost off the east coast now. Got colleagues in Tampa - haven't heard from them today... Hope things go better in FL than they did in LA.
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Re: Katrina 2005

Postby analog » Mon Oct 24, 2005 9:29 pm

Talked to the kids today.

Daughter in Key West 'evacuated' to Key Largo, where her friend's house lost some trees and roof shingles , and got a little salt water in the yard.

Daughter in Homestead lost only an oak tree and back porch screens.

Son in Orlando reports just a little wind and rain then a beautiful afternoon.


Now would be a good time to go sea-shelling on Marco Island or Cape Sable. West wind brings in a fresh batch.

<small>[ 10-24-2005, 10:38 PM: Message edited by: analog ]</small>
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Re: Katrina 2005

Postby piqaboo » Tue Oct 25, 2005 11:49 am

Holy Moly! With three kids in FL, you've had some worrisome times these past two years! Glad they all came thru ok (hoping KW daughter's house is ok).

RC - we're hoping the best for you.
And for everyone else in Wilma's path.
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Re: Katrina 2005

Postby BigJon@Work » Fri Jan 20, 2006 8:32 pm

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Re: Katrina 2005

Postby Haggis@wk » Mon Dec 20, 2010 2:56 pm

I'm now most of the way through George W. Bush's presidential memoir, Decision Points (still #1 on Amazon). It is certainly a reflective book, full of admissions of error and regret alongside the defense of certain unpopular decisions and quite unlike the usual politician's fare. Bush's account generally rings true (even if incomplete in certain obvious respects), both in Bush's measure of himself and his generous assessment of others. When he hammers somebody, you can really feel his frustration.

The chapter on Katrina not surprisingly contains no small measure of regret, but it is uncharacteristically savage in its depiction of Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco and Mayor Ray Nagin:

"Who's in charge of security in New Orleans?" I asked.

My question silenced the raucous discussion in the Air Force One conference room on Friday, September 2, 2005. "The governor is in charge," Mayor Ray Nagin said, pointing across the dark wood table at Governor Kathleen Blanco.

Every head pivoted in her direction. The Louisiana governor froze. She looked agitated and exhausted. "I think it's the mayor," she said non-committally.


The tone started out tense and got worse. The governor and mayor bickered. Everyone blasted the Federal Emergency Management Agency for failing to meet their needs. Congressman Bobby Jindal pointed out that FEMA had asked people to email their requests, despite the lack of electricity in the city. I shook my head. "We'll fix it," I said, looking at FEMA director Mike Brown. Senator Mary Landrieu interrupted with unproductive emotional outbursts. "Would you please be quiet?" I had to say to her at one point.

I asked to speak to Governor Blanco privately. We walked out of the conference room, through a narrow passageway, and into the small cabin at the front tip of Air Force One. I told her it was clear the state and local response forces had been overwhelmed. "Governor," I pressed, "you need to authorize the federal government to take charge of the response."

She told me she needed twenty-four hours to think it over.

"We don't have twenty-four hours," I snapped. "We've waited too long already."

The governor refused to give an answer.

Next I asked to meet privately with Mayor Nagin. He had spent four days since Katrina holed up in a downtown hotel. He hadn't bathed or eaten a hot meal until he used my shower and ate breakfast on Air Force One. In a radio interview the previous evening, he had vented his frustration with the federal government. "Get off your asses and do something," he said, "and let's fix the biggest goddamn crisis in the history of this country." Then he broke down in tears. When I met him on that plane, Ray whispered an apology for his outburst and explained that he was exhausted.

I asked the mayor what he thought about federalizing the responses. He supported it. "Nobody's in charge," he said. "We need a clear chain of command." But only the governor could request that the federal government assume control of the emergency.

I think that if Rudy Giuliani or Rich Daley had been running New Orleans and just about anybody else had been running Louisiana the human costs of Katrina would have been vastly less.
The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public’s money.” Alexis De Tocqueville 1835
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Re: Katrina 2005

Postby Shapley » Mon Dec 20, 2010 4:02 pm

I've pointed out many times that the federal government cannot just go into a State and take command. Too many people slept through that part of their government classes, methinks.

Those same people will probably read that excerpt and say that President Bush is just passing the buck...
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Re: Katrina 2005

Postby jamiebk » Mon Dec 20, 2010 10:57 pm

process and system paralysis...

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Re: Katrina 2005

Postby Shapley » Mon Dec 20, 2010 11:29 pm

...separation of powers, federalism, and the problem with electing governors that don't know how to govern...
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Re: Katrina 2005

Postby dai bread » Tue Dec 21, 2010 5:44 pm

The Mayor and Governor shouldn't have been on Air Force One anyway. They should have been far too busy attending to their people. If Federal help is needed, surely a phone call will do.
We have no money; we must use our brains. -Ernest Rutherford.
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