The Feds Think New Orleans Is Just Fine

The Big Disconnect in New Orleans, in which CNN compares what federal officals say to the reality on the ground. Absolutely shocking.

One example:

# [FEMA Director] Brown: I’ve just learned today that we … are in the process of completing the evacuations of the hospitals, that those are going very well.

# CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta: It’s gruesome. I guess that is the best word for it. If you think about a hospital, for example, the morgue is in the basement, and the basement is completely flooded. So you can just imagine the scene down there. But when patients die in the hospital, there is no place to put them, so they’re in the stairwells. It is one of the most unbelievable situations I’ve seen as a doctor, certainly as a journalist as well. There is no electricity. There is no water. There’s over 200 patients still here remaining. …We found our way in through a chopper and had to land at a landing strip and then take a boat. And it is exactly … where the boat was traveling where the snipers opened fire yesterday, halting all the evacuations.

Harry Connick Jr. on how easy it is to get into New Orleans. (Thanks, Marty, for mentioning that one).

Mayor to Feds: Get Off Your Asses (CNN)

A Can’t-Do Government (New York Times). Including this memorable quote:

“On Wednesday,” said an editorial in The Sun Herald in Biloxi, Miss., “reporters listening to horrific stories of death and survival at the Biloxi Junior High School shelter looked north across Irish Hill Road and saw Air Force personnel playing basketball and performing calisthenics. Playing basketball and performing calisthenics!”

Harry Connick Jr. Voiced some of my suspicions (blog post).

The FEMA chief blaming the victims (this is a story I wrote about earlier)

From Margins of Society to Center of Tragedy (New York Times)

Critics Say Bush Undercut Flood Prevention Funding (Washington Post)

4 thoughts on “The Feds Think New Orleans Is Just Fine

  1. Mayor of New Orleans: You are FIRED!

    You have failed to prepare, You have failed to provide and you have failed to coordinate.

    Now the feds have to BAIL YOU OUT!

    Nagil, YOU ARE FIRED!

    Reply

  2. http://www.nola.com/newsflash/louisiana/index.ssf?base/news-18/1125239940201382.xml&storylist=louisiana

    Gov. Kathleen Blanco, standing beside the mayor at a news conference, said President Bush called and personally appealed for a mandatory evacuation for the low-lying city, which is prone to flooding.

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/chi-050901corps,1,7189346.story?coll=chi-news-hed&ctrack=1&cset=true

    In a telephone interview with reporters, corps officials said that although portions of the flood-protection levees remain incomplete, the levees near Lake Pontchartrain that gave way—inundating much of the city—were completed and in good condition before the hurricane.

    Reply

  3. I think it’s fair to say there was gross mismanagement of this situation, including advance planning, at every level of government.

    One positive thing I noted this time around: Bush’s “we’ve not dont well enough” comment. I think that’s the first time I’ve heard something like that from him, and it’s to be commended.

    Reply

    George Danchev Reply:

    I just can’t imagine how can leave the poor people days after the strike to struggle for their lives alone. Seems it is easier for the government to send troops and aircarriers all over the world than to send rescue teams to N.O. area. Out of any humanity. The government needs to be heavily patched.

    Reply

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