Yahoo! News: Bush comments on Katrina sound sour in New Orleans
"Bush didn't give a damn what we got."
"To me, black folks weren't handled right, but we can't worry about it. We have to do the best we can."
Here, let me translate:
"Waaah waaaah waaaah! George Bush needs to stop running the country and help N'awlins out because he's white and we're black and the Democrats done tol' us fer 40 years that white people owe us stuff cuz mah great great gran-pappy were a slave! Now where mah gummint checks at so's ah can buy one o' them flat screen TVs?"
Before something is the responsibility of a county government - whether mundane or disastrous - it is the responsibility of the municipal government. Before it is the responsibility of the state government, it is the responsibility of the municipal and county governments. Before even CONSIDERING asking the federal government (the National Guard is governed by the federal government, by the way) for assistance, it is the responsibility of the local, county, and then the state government to put resources towards resolving the problem.
What do you mean, "black folks weren't handled right"? They weren't waited on hand and foot? They weren't scooped out of the New Orleans city limits on the wings of angels 5 minutes after Hurricane Katrina struck? They weren't given their reparations checks along with their rescue by the cavalry? The federal government bent over backwards to accomodate some mouth-breathing troglodytes who CHOSE, out of all the regions in the Southern United States, to live in a COASTAL city that LIES BELOW SEA LEVEL. Do you know what happened to other communities in the South that were hit by the hurricane? They dealt with it just fine, like any other hurricane they have experienced: communities of people, along with their municipal and county leadership, made sure everyone was properly secure. There was minimal loss of life, even if a good deal of property was destroyed.
Now, contrast this with the persecution complex adopted by Mayor Ray "Chocolate City" Nagin and the weeping and pleading offered by Governor Kathleen Blanco, and you start to realize that New Orleans truly is a "different" kind of city. It is a Democrat stronghold, and we all know what THAT means - lots of stupid people with a "society owes me" mentality, an easily angered populace who can't understand that solutions to their problems don't come by FedEx Overnight, and a host of other social ills directly related to the ever-increasing size of the welfare state and federal involvement in more aspects of daily life.
"Black folks" were not only "handled right", the federal government went above and beyond to help them. Well, as much as they could when the whole damn city was 20 feet under water and rescuers were being shot at! The other communities affected not only by Hurricane Katrina but other hurricanes before and after have experienced a miniscule fraction of the looting, rape, murder, and all other forms of iniquity (I'm talking Louisiana Superdome-style mayhem) because the people in other places are of a different mindset.
Individuals in those communities are more or less independent - they have emergency supplies, a good rapport with their neighbors, and they survive and thrive despite that there's rarely a government agency around to hold their hand as they weather a natural phenomenon. Individuals in New Orleans are different. They are dependent, being taught that they are helpless and thus need government help every step of the way since birth. They don't know their neighbors, stock no emergency supplies (outside of perhaps a cheap handgun and some malt liquor), and are ready to take advantage of other people at the drop of a hat.
This has nothing to do with a lot of Southern communities being "white" while New Orleans is "black" (excuse me, "chocolate"), and thus one is somehow deserving of more federal resources than the other. It has everything to do with a community mindset. Are you a sheepdog or are you a sheep? Are you prepared and ready for danger, or are you just going to stand around with a dumb look on your face and let everyone else figure it out for you?
President Bush is absolutely correct when he said "[T]he systems are in place to continue the reconstruction in New Orleans." They're called the local and state governments, which should have been the "first responders".
The morning of September 11th, 2001 could have been much worse for the people on the ground had there not been competent leadership at a more local level. New York was led by Rudy Giuliani, who refused to be a victim and allow chaos to ensue. He worked with emergency responders, instead of looking to them to do his job. He didn't blame some federal agency for "not doing enough". I obviously can't get inside Mr. Giuliani's head, but I probably wouldn't be far off if I said that the foremost thought going through his head during that day and the days following was something to the degree of "What needs to be done and how can I help things along?" That's it. The buck stopped there. Ray Nagin was more concerned with "Who can I blame because I didn't do my job?" than with being a good example to the people in his city. Giuliani and anyone else who decided that they would do everything they could to help others and not worry about blame were the MEN of the hour. Nagin is an unmanly simp who would likely respond to his keys getting locked in the car by revoking the business license of the local locksmith if he wasn't there to assist in a "timely manner".
Hundreds of school buses sat underwater rotting away. Those buses could have saved thousands of people, but that would have required Nagin to do his job. Remember kids, when a black person is in need, it is the responsibility of all white federal officials to rush aid to them. When a black person says "jump", all whites who heard the command are to respond "how high?" This is the legacy of the modern Democratic Party. They are the same kind of Democratic Party of the antebellum South, but they now engage in intellectual and moral enslavement of minorities. They have made them wards of the state again. The benevolent white plantation boss is ultimately responsible for their well-being and prosperity yet again.
New Orleans is corrupt as corrupt can be, so it wasn't much of a surprise that Nagin was more worried about his job and his image.
As for Kathleen Blanco, she had the nerve to point the finger at the federal response despite not doing her job, either:
"President Bush is totally wrong about the federal response... It was absolutely too slow in those early, critical days."
Whose responsibility were those levees? Could it have been the state government's responsibility? Here in California, we make sure that we are more or less prepared for the aftermath of a significant earthquake. We're not going to point fingers at FEMA because they were "absolutely too slow" in trying to help us, at least not after local and state resources are exhausted. We make sure to maintain earthquake standards for buildings and design our skyscrapers with all sorts of cutting-edge technology to make them more stable. The southern part of our state suffers from large brush fires every year, yet 9 times out of 10 our state and local fire departments and forest services tackle the blazes. We don't have to wait for George Bush to send a federal fire department to our aid because our governor and local officials wasted time making a "People I'm Going to Blame For This" list.
Since 2005, the Bush Administration and Congress have set aside $126 billion (with a 'B') for hurricane relief. Despite this massive influx of funds, not much has been done. Typical of governmental response to everything - just throw money at it until it goes away.
"Melanie Ehrlich, a resident and frequent critic of the state-run Road Home program, said that residents, not goverment at any level, have rebuilt the city."
I guess people in New Orleans are waking up from their nanny-state dream and starting to take their future in their own hands. They learned their lesson correctly - the federal government has no responsibility to dole out aid for individuals. That is the responsibility of local governments. If the local government doesn't help, that is not the responsibility of the federal government. They weren't the ones who elected an egomaniacal malingerer for mayor or a bumbling nincompoop for governor.
Cities rise and fall. Governments are instituted and they dissolve. No matter how many times human society goes through the cycles of civilization, we are ultimately responsible for ourselves. Self-reliance is a biological imperative, but some people are just more "progressive" and have concealed that imperative better than others through the help of massive and ineffective bureaucracies with their "feel-good" social welfare policies that only serve to hobble ingenuity and human advancement.