Entries categorized "Soapbox"

Hurricane Katrina

Better late than never.  President Bush, today, finally took responsibility for government failures in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.  Keep in mind the Hurricane blasted through Louisiana and the Gulf States two weeks ago and he has received intense criticism from the media, Americans and some members of his own party - not to mention the fact that his poll numbers continue to plummet.

"Katrina exposed serious problems in our response capability at all levels of government," Bush said at a joint White House news conference with Iraqi President Jalal Talabani.  "To the extent the federal government didn't do its job right, I take responsibility."

Now let's hope that Mr. Bush does the right thing and investigates the horrible government failures  and makes the necessary changes in the Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) before another catastrophe occurs and more lives are lost. 

Keep in mind Hurricane Ophelia is bearing down on the Carolina Coast, at this writing, and hurricane season doesn't end for another 2 1/2 months. Sobering isn't it?

Hurricane Katrina - Day 10

Spin, spin, spin.  The Congress is back in town, and instead of taking a fair, unbiased look at the federal government's failure to respond adequately to Hurricane Katrina, partisan politics is breaking out all across town.  Republicans create a panel to look at the response effort, but don't consult Democrats.  Democrats refuse to participate because they were not consulted and will not have bipartisan 'subpoena' powers, or an ability to sit on panel balanced with equal numbers of Democrats and Republicans.  Republicans accuse Democrats of playing 'partisan' politics when Democrats question the Administration's response to the Hurricane.  The President launches his own investigation:  'we'll investigate the administration response ourselves'.

Back and forth, back and forth, like a tennis match.  For goodness sake!  It's not lost on Americans across the country that the Republicans control everything in Washington:  White House, House and Senate.  The White House (with the President's inquiry) and the Republicans (with their inquiry) seem to be saying, 'we'll handle it':  kind of like the 'accused' in a trial saying "forget about the judge and jury let me 'try' myself.  I'll be fair, thorough, un-biased, and I'll do the right thing, just leave it to me".

Memo to the President and Congress:   Please appoint an independent, non-partisan, un-biased commission, like the 9-11 Commission, so that Americans can feel secure in knowing that a fair, un-biased, comprehensive investigation will be launched and completed.  To do anything less is a travesty.  To do anything less means that the federal emergency response problems could continue without correction, thus jeopordizing more American lives in future natural or man-made disasters.

'Come on Washington.  Do the right thing for the sake of our country'.

Hurricane Katrina - Day 8

The following excerpt from the Associated Press (AP) speaks for itself . . .

Houston, Texas (AP) - Former Presidents Bush and Clinton got smiles, hugs and requests for autographs when they met with refugees from Hurricane Katrina - but it was Bush's wife who got attention for some of her comments.

Barbara Bush, who accompanied the former presidents on the tour of the Astrdome complex Monday, said the relocation to Houston is "working very well" for some of the poor people forced out of New Orleans.

"What I'm hearing which is sort of scary, is that all want to stay in Texas.  Everyone is so overwhelmed with the hospitality," she said during a radio interview with the American Public Media Program "Marketplace".  "And So many of the people in the arena here, you know, were underpriveledged anyway, so this is working very well for them."

Her comments came as the two former presidents visited with hundreds of 23,600 hurricane refugees and announced the creation of the Bush-Clinton Katrina Fund.