CNN’s Gary Tuchman reports on a New Orleans man who has a sad and startling reason for staying in town.
I remember on Tuesday morning picking up newspapers and I saw headlines, ‘New Orleans Dodged The Bullet.'”
The headline, of course, in most of the papers on Tuesday — “New Orleans Dodged a Bullet,” or words to that effect. At that time, when those words were in our minds, we started working issues before we were asked, and on Tuesday, at the direction of the secretary and the deputy secretary, we went to each of the services.
Now the president is saying it (original link, no longer active – http://archive.thinkprogress.org/politics/2005/09/12/1764/bush-relaxation/):
What I was referring to is this: When that storm came by, a lot of people said we dodged a bullet. When that storm came through at first, people said, Whew. There was a sense of relaxation. And that’s what I was referring to.
And I myself thought we had dodged a bullet. You know why? Because I was listening to people probably over the airwaves say, The bullet has been dodged. And that was what I was referring to.
The trouble is, the only media source that said “Dodged a Bullet” was the ultra-conservative mini-paper, WorldNetDaily. If that’s where the president gets all his news, we’re in trouble.
And all of this begs the question… why is the President getting his information from the newspapers in the first place? Shouldn’t he be talking to weather services and officials on the ground in New Orleans? Like the Army Corps of Engineers; the guys who are actually standing there looking at the levees?
All the mainstream newspapers said this:
Media Matters examines the facts surrounding each of these bogus Republican claims.
1. Bush: “I don’t think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees”
2. Chertoff strained credulity in defense of Bush, claimed levee breaks and massive flooding came as a surprise — more than 12 hours after local media reported them
3. Brown: “We’ve provided food to the people at the Convention Center so that they’ve gotten at least one, if not two meals, every single day”
4. Chertoff: “Apparently, some time on Wednesday, people started to go to the convention center spontaneously”
5. Chertoff pointed fingers: “New Orleans officials and the state officials … called for the Superdome to be the refuge of last resort”
6. Chertoff falsely minimized federal government’s role in Katrina response as subordinate to states
7. Wash. Post, Newsweek, Gingrich falsely claimed that Blanco did not declare a state of emergency
8. Gingrich falsely claimed that Nagin could “have kept water pumped out” of city had he ensured that pumps worked
From Metamute comes this story; please read it…
by Larry Bradshaw and Lorrie Beth Slonsky
Two paramedics stranded in New Orleans in the wake of hurricane Katrina give their account of self-organisation and abandonment in the disaster zone
From a woman with a battery powered radio we learned that the media was talking about us. Up in full view on the freeway, every relief and news organizations saw us on their way into the City. Officials were being asked what they were going to do about all those families living up on the freeway? The officials responded they were going to take care of us. Some of us got a sinking feeling. “Taking care of us” had an ominous tone to it.
Unfortunately, our sinking feeling (along with the sinking City) was correct.
Just as dusk set in, a Gretna Sheriff showed up, jumped out of his patrol vehicle, aimed his gun at our faces, screaming, “Get off the fucking freeway”. A helicopter arrived and used the wind from its blades to blow away our flimsy structures. As we retreated, the sheriff loaded up his truck with our food and water.
Once again, at gunpoint, we were forced off the freeway. All the law enforcement agencies appeared threatened when we congregated or congealed into groups of 20 or more. In every congregation of “victims” they saw “mob” or “riot”. We felt safety in numbers. Our “we must stay together” was impossible because the agencies would force us into small atomized groups.
In the pandemonium of having our camp raided and destroyed, we scattered once again. Reduced to a small group of 8 people, in the dark, we sought refuge in an abandoned school bus, under the freeway on Cilo Street. We were hiding from possible criminal elements but equally and definitely, we were hiding from the police and sheriffs with their martial law, curfew and shoot-to-kill policies.
The next days, our group of 8 walked most of the day, made contact with New Orleans Fire Department and were eventually airlifted out by an urban search and rescue team. We were dropped off near the airport and managed to catch a ride with the National Guard. The two young guardsmen apologized for the limited response of the Louisiana guards. They explained that a large section of their unit was in Iraq and that meant they were shorthanded and were unable to complete all the tasks they were assigned.
See also A tale of Two Photos for some other photos taken within hours of one another.
Before the hurricane struck, the Mayor and Governor were begging for federal help to put sandbags at the levees and to get rescue trucks in to evacuate people; they weren’t just asking people to leave, they were asking for federal help to get people who didn’t have transportation out.
See the letter asking for help here… the letter the president ignored for 4 days.
Fox News and the Bush administration are now blaming the Governor and the Mayor, saying the didn’t ask for help, and didn’t explain what they needed. It’s not true; the white house are liars.
According to Drudge, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has recently enjoyed a little Broadway entertainment. And Page Six reports that she’s also working on her backhand with Monica Seles. So the Gulf Coast has gone all Mad Max, women are being raped in the Superdome, and Rice is enjoying a brief vacation in New York. We wish we were surprised.
What does surprise us: Just moments ago at the Ferragamo on 5th Avenue, Condoleeza Rice was seen spending several thousands of dollars on some nice, new shoes (we’ve confirmed this, so her new heels will surely get coverage from the WaPo’s Robin Givhan). A fellow shopper, unable to fathom the absurdity of Rice’s timing, went up to the Secretary and reportedly shouted, “How dare you shop for shoes while thousands are dying and homeless!” Never one to have her fashion choices questioned, Rice had security PHYSICALLY REMOVE the woman.
Angry Lady, whoever you are, we love you. You are a true American.
Bitch, get to the White House and get to work. I’m at work right now, you should be too.
The Houston Chronicle had an article about what would happen in New Orleans if a major hurricane should hit — back in December of 2001.
Amazing that the White House intended to cut funding for for the Army Corp. of Engineers, given that it was well known what the problems were.