The Tao of Politics

One of my main concerns is: how can I make a difference? There are thousands of political blogs out there. It’s easy to get lost in that ocean. So I may blog about politics on occasion, or I may blog about health issues, depending on where my interests lead me, and where I feel I can contribute something of significance.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Federal EMERGENCY Management Agency

  • FEMA needs to be headed by an Army General, or the Army Corps of Engineers, or someone who knows how to do a tough job; someone who knows how to move men and material. Definitely not a politician, or someone with no emergency management experience.

  • FEMA needs to remain in a constant state of preparedness.

  • FEMA needs to start with the assumption that, after a national emergency, people will be suffering. That's why it's called an emergency. Their suffering needs to be alleviated as soon as possible, within hours, not days or weeks. There needs to be compassion for all the victims.

Now, having said all that, there was a segment on Countdown last night in which they compared the emergency response after last year’s Florida hurricanes with the emergency response to Hurricane Katrina. Last year was an election year, of course, and the relief effort in the home state of the President’s brother was magnificent, to say the least. The relief effort in New Orleans this year was . . . somewhat less than magnificent. Was it all about politics? Are relations between President Bush and Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco strained? Does the President care more about white Floridians than he does about black Louisianans? I don’t know. That’s something the American public will have to decide. My current thinking is that there is not a lot wrong with FEMA, but there is a lot wrong with our leadership in this country. All that needs to be looked into. In the meantime, for God’s sake do something so that we don’t repeat the same mistakes the next time there is an EMERGENCY.


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