Saturday, September 03, 2005

The Truth About New Orleans

I am a former resident and law enforcement officer of New Orleans (1998-2004). I have spent the last week flipping back and forth between FOX and CNN. While most of America is shocked by what has happened. I, on the other hand, am not!

My employment in law enforcement during my years as a NOLA resident taught me a lot! And ultimately led to my leaving! While most people are shocked at the lack of leadership, I am not! While most people are shocked at anarchy, I am not!


As for the leadership, most of the blame goes to Gov. Blanco! I remember her lack of understanding of policies and planning during the gubernatorial debates. She often appeared confused and rattled when asked a question. Many times she would simply answer a question by stating, "I agree with him (Bobby Jindal)." or "I think we should do what he (Bobby Jindal) said." Of course Jindal lost because of his political party and youth. While many people want to lay the blame at the President, we must understand that the federal government can not take charge of a situation until the Governor of that state provides authorization.


The total destruction that we see in New Orleans was expected. Several years ago, an Times-Picayune reporter did about a five-part series with LSU clearing reporting what would happen to NOLA during a CAT 5 hurricane. The report included a full-color graphic showing how the levee holding back the lake would break. This graphic also clearly showed what parts of the city would be flooded and by how much water.

On Saturday (8/27/05), I told my wife that Katrina would hit the heated waters of the gulf and become a major hurricane and slam into NOLA. I then went to the Times-Picayune website, found the report in the archives and showed her what would happen.

Several years ago, when the article was first published, I downloaded the graphic as a PDF file on my laptop, brought it to work, and asked our leadership, "What are we going to do when this happens?" The response has allows been, "Well, we hope that never happens." (click here for report)


Everyone wants to bring in Rudy! However, this is an entirely different disaster. The 9/11 terror attack did not effect the entire city of New York in the same manner as Katrina. The actual disaster was in a "section" of the city. The city of New York was not under water. The complete infastructure of the city was not destroyed! Rudy would not have made the relief efforts any better.

The blame does not go beyond the leaders of Louisiana!


ash said...

With all due respect:

There's plenty of blame to go around, but in times of crisis, we look to the leader of the free world, not the governor of some pissant state. You're going to have to explain to me how the federal government can't do anything unless the state authorizes it - I'm not a lawyer, but the federal government can move in and take over whenever it damn well pleases (and whenever it is politically expedient.)

Sure they knew it would happen. We've all read about the newspaper report of a few years back. So what's your point?

My point is that somebody should have been ready. The Federal Emergency Management folks, the Homeland Security folks, they're supposed to be ready for shit like this. That's what they've been training to do, especially since Sept. 11, 2001. But the response was pitiful and woefully slow. Why? Where are my tax dollars going? I'll tell you why - nobody was ready because nobody cares about lower middle class people with no political donations to make and no political clout in Washington. If this had happened in Florida, would we even be talking about the response at all? Hell no!

Why isn't this like 9/11? Why isn't there a national moment of silence/ Why are major league baseball players and professional football players suiting up? Why didn't everyone swarm the Red Cross to give blood, instead of jamming gas stations for their own good? Why? Because most Americans don't know what it's like to grow up in a project. Because most Americans are lazy slobs. Because of money and politics and this country's inability to care for the lowest of its residents.

The blame certainly extends beyond Louisiana, into every hall of power, every home of the priveledged and lazy, every notebook of an inept media, every heart of an uncaring American.

Screwy Hoolie said...