A Lady's Ruminations

"Jane was firm where she felt herself to be right." -Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Rightly So!

I saw part of the Michael Brown hearing on Fox News earlier this morning. While I'm certain he didn't do a perfect job as the head of FEMA, he's certainly right about the failings of others.

AP: Former FEMA Director Blames Others---

WASHINGTON - Former FEMA director Michael Brown blamed others for most government failures in responding to Hurricane Katrina on Tuesday, especially Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco and New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin. He aggressively defended his own role.
Brown's testimony drew a scathing response from Rep. William Jefferson (news, bio, voting record), D-La.

"I find it absolutely stunning that this hearing would start out with you, Mr. Brown, laying the blame for FEMA's failings at the feet of the governor of Louisiana and the Mayor of New Orleans."
This from William Jefferson, who had National Guard escort him to his house so he could retrieve his belongings, while people were going unrescued. William Jefferson who is under FBI Investigation and was possibly removing evidence from his house?

Who is he to talk?

Further, the blame for the failings belong mostly to the governor of Louisiana and the mayor of New Orleans.

Has William Jefferson or any of the others on the committee, or the governor of Louisiana and the mayor of New Orleans most importantly, ever read the New Orleans Emergency Plan. Blanco and Nagin were responsible for the evacuation and response to Hurricane Katrina, not FEMA. FEMA is not a first responder. FEMA should not have to go in to a disaster area and have to fix, not only the disaster, but the incomptence of the area's officials.

Texas, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida all seem to be doing just fine. They have competent officials. It is only in Louisiana that there have been major problems.

Brown in his opening statement said he had made several "specific mistakes" in dealing with the storm, and listed two.

One, he said, was not having more media briefings.

As to the other, he said: "I very strongly personally regret that I was unable to persuade Gov. Blanco and Mayor Nagin to sit down, get over their differences, and work together. I just couldn't pull that off."

Both Blanco and Nagin are Democrats.

In Baton Rouge, La., Blanco's press secretary, Denise Bottcher, ridiculed Brown's line of attack. "Mike Brown wasn't engaged then, and he surely isn't now. He should have been watching CNN instead of the Disney Channel," Bottcher said.
And what was cry-baby Kathleen Blanco watching instead of putting the emergency plan into effect? Lifetime Television for Women?

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