Gov. Blanco's Bureaucrats Blocked Food and Water
Fox News is reporting that the Red Cross was blocked from delivering food and water to the Superdome by Louisiana officials. Brilliant, absolutely brilliant. From all appearances, you could have gotten better leadership than Nagin and Blanco simply calling Rudy Guiliani's mobile and asking for advice.
Warning: take your blood-pressure medication before reading the following snippets.
|The Red Cross was reportedly ready to deliver food, water and other supplies to flood-ravaged refugees who were sweltering inside New Orleans' Superdome last week - but the relief was blocked by bureaucrats who worked for Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco.|
Fox News Channel's Major Garrett reported Wednesday that the Red Cross had "trucks with water, food, hygiene equipment, all sorts of things ready to go ... to the Superdome and Convention Center."
But the Louisiana Department of Homeland Security, Garrett said, "told them they could not go."
"The Red Cross tells me that Louisiana's Department of Homeland Security said, 'Look, we do not want to create a magnet for more people to come to the Superdome or Convention Center, we want to get them out,'" he explained.
"So at the same time local officials were screaming where is the food, where is the water, the Red Cross was standing by ready [and] the Louisiana Department of Homeland Security said you can't go."
Following up, Radioblogger transcribed a fascinating interview with Garrett:
|MG: ...you know, I watch hurricanes all the time. And I see correspondents standing among rubble and refugees and evacuaees. But I always either see that Red Cross or Salvation Army truck nearby. Why don't I see that?|
HH: And the answer is?
MG: The answer is the Louisiana Department of Homeland Security, that is the state agency responsible for that state's homeland security, told the Red Cross explicitly, you cannot come... I want your listeners to follow me here. At the very moment that Ray Nagin, the Mayor of New Orleans was screaming where's the food, where's the water, it was over the overpass, and state officials were saying you can't come in.
The Political Teen has video of Garrett discussing this issue with Britt Hume.
Bob Williams, a state legislator from the state of Washington during the Mount St. Helen's disruption, also pins the blame on clueless state and local officials:
|...Mayor Nagin was responsible for giving the order for mandatory evacuation and supervising the actual evacuation: His Office of Emergency Preparedness (not the federal government) must coordinate with the state on elements of evacuation and assist in directing the transportation of evacuees to staging areas. Mayor Nagin had to be encouraged by the governor to contact the National Hurricane Center before he finally, belatedly, issued the order for mandatory evacuation. And sadly, it apparently took a personal call from the president to urge the governor to order the mandatory evacuation.|
...unlike the governors of New York, Oklahoma and California in past disasters, Gov. Blanco failed to take charge of the situation and ensure that the state emergency operation facility was in constant contact with Mayor Nagin and FEMA. It is likely that thousands of people died because of the failure of Gov. Blanco to implement the state plan, which mentions the possible need to evacuate up to one million people. The plan clearly gives the governor the authority for declaring an emergency, sending in state resources to the disaster area and requesting necessary federal assistance...
The phrase 'useless bureaucratic gasbags' comes to mind. As do a few choice curse words. When the final history of this sorry catastrophe is written, the names Nagin and Blanco will likely be written in the same context as Nero, who fiddled while Rome burned.