Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Michael: Accountability for Lake New Orleans

Accountability for Lake New Orleans levee breach and the flooding of New Orleans will be a major scandal for this Administration. The funding for improvements to the flood control district designed to mitigate the effect of a catagory 4 or 5 storm were diverted to other projects as a result of the elective Iraq war and homeland security boondoggles.

When this shakes out into the mainstream media, it is going to crush Bush like a bug. We don't yet know the scale of the human disaster in new Orleans and surrounding areas, but I suspect in a few weeks we will realize that hundreds, if not thousands, will have died. Those deaths will demand an accounting and this Administration is already overextended.

4 Comments:

At 8:34 PM, Blogger Joel Gaines said...

"When this shakes out into the mainstream media, it is going to crush Bush like a bug. We don't yet know the scale of the human disaster in new Orleans and surrounding areas, but I suspect in a few weeks we will realize that hundreds, if not thousands, will have died. Those deaths will demand an accounting and this Administration is already overextended."

I wonder why one could not have waited until all of the bodies were accounted for before using the catastrophic, natural disaster for political gain.

 
At 6:13 PM, Blogger Jack Benway said...

In the stories you cite, it is stated that the funds were cut in 2004, and that at that time, a 4 year study was required to determine how to protect New Orleans against a category 4 or 5 storm. Sure, funding was cut, but were it there, it still would have made no difference. You're cherrypicking data to meet your political goal, which is odd, because there's plenty of GOP screw-ups on this to criticize.

If you want to cast blame, how about asking where FEMA has been for the last 72 hours? How about asking why New Orleans had no comprehensive risk management plan for a hurricane, yet had one for terrorist attacks? How about asking why no engineering studies had been conducted to look at ways of repairing the levees in the event of a breach? How about asking why the pumps in New Orleans pump the water back into the lake so that it can flow back into the city?

There's plenty of stupidity in this event. You don't have to invent some.

 
At 6:20 PM, Blogger Jack Benway said...

Actually, I've rethought that last post.

How about holding off on casting any blame until the bodies aren't floating down flooded streets anymore? There's plenty of time to criticize and cast blame. Doing so now is opportunistic in the same way a vulture is opportunistic, in the same way that the looters in N.O. are opportunistic.

 
At 9:38 PM, Blogger Michael said...

I disagree that there is anything ghoulish or politically opportune about the desire to assign blame for a preventable tragedy. Immediately following 9/11, the very next question that occured to people after "who did it?" was, "could this have been prevented?" That second question still has not been adequately answered almost 4 years later. Given how long and difficult a process it can be to ferret out the answers to such complex issues of causality, it is not innapropriate to start asking the questions, and even suggesting conclusions, immediately.

Outrage demands an assignment of blame. Only those who aren't terriby outraged, or those who wish to shield the guilty, are themsleves outraged and 'shocked' by the 'opportunism' of legitimate allegations of blame.

That said, benway makes asks some important and germane questions which should be considered in his first comment.

 

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