Mister Eclectic (howeird) wrote,
Mister Eclectic

For Pete's Sake

Pete Wilson launched into a 15-minute radio rant just as I was driving back to work from lunch. The gist of it is he has had shouting matches in the hall with people he likes and respects because they want to blame Bush for everything which has happened to NOLA and the surrounding area this week. He sounded like he was having a difficult time maintaining a professional on-air voice, I think he wanted to yell and scream.

This is what i emailed him:
Hi Pete,

I heard the first 10 minutes of your rant this afternoon on my way back from lunch. Or I think it was you - I'm not a regular listener, and the speaker did not give his name at the break.

Anyhow, you're right, this is not healthy. I was afraid you were going to have a heart attack right in front of the mike. We don't need that. Try not to take it so personally.

I hear what you are saying about not wanting to blame a president for what he doesn't do, but you're just plain wrong about that. When someone stands idly by who has the power to help, that person deserves some blame.

It was obvious to anyone who saw the satellite images or listened to any weather segment on the news last Saturday that a huge hurricane, possibly the biggest one ever, was going to hit somewhere in the general vicinity of New Orleans. By Sunday morning there was no doubt at all. And there was no doubt it was going to impact at least three states. What Bush should have done at that point was declare a national emergency, direct his Joint Chiefs to mobilize troops, equipment and supplies, and coordinate with the governors of the affected states to call out the National Guard.  To wait nearly a week to lift a finger? Insane.

Unfortunately, most of the National Guard are in Iraq. Maybe we can blame Bush for that?

You're right that Bush is not the only president to blame for the Army Corps not having the funding to build storm-proof levies.  But he's certainly one of them. Clinton couldn't do much - but he had a Republican House to contend with. As you know, it's the House which appropriates money for all Federal programs. And yes, you could blame every President since Jefferson, but I don't think we had  the technology until the 30's to really do this job.

Like you, I don't think this is about race. However, there can be no doubt that the majority of the people who could not afford to evacuate when the order was given are Black. Had Bush ordered the military to  mobilize before the hurricane struck, they might have been able to get everyone out who wanted to get out. It's too late now.

Best regards

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