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The incompetence of the Bush Administration over Katrina revealed.

The totally inadequate response by Bush during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina is generally seen as the issue that really started the slide in popularity of Bush. I’ve no doubt Iraq would have continued to do so anyway, but Katrina accelerated the process. However, the sheer ineptitude of the Bush Administration’s response to Katrina can be found in the pages of the Washington Post today:

Allies offered $854 million in cash and in oil that was to be sold for cash. But only $40 million has been used so far for disaster victims or reconstruction, according to U.S. officials and contractors. Most of the aid went uncollected, including $400 million worth of oil..Overall, the United States declined 54 of 77 recorded aid offers from three of its staunchest allies: Canada, Britain and Israel, according to a 40-page State Department table of the offers that had been received as of January 2006…

Even the money and aid that the US did accept has been poorly managed:

Of the $126 million in cash that has been received, most has not yet been used. More than $60 million was set aside in March 2006 to rebuild schools, colleges and universities, but so far, only $10.4 million has been taken by schools.

Here’s a real kicker :

In one exchange, State Department officials anguished over whether to tell Italy that its shipments of medicine, gauze and other medical supplies spoiled in the elements for weeks after Katrina’s landfall on Aug. 29, 2005, and were destroyed. “Tell them we blew it,” one disgusted official wrote. But she hedged: “The flip side is just to dispose of it and not come clean. I could be persuaded.”

And what was the Bush Administration doing to try and correct all of this incompetence? Why, issue propaganda orders to its ambassadors to tell everyone how appreciative they were of the offers:

…presidential confidante Karen Hughes sent a cable from her State Department office to U.S. ambassadors worldwide. Titled “Echo-Chamber Message” — a public relations term for talking points designed to be repeated again and again — the Sept. 7, 2005, directive was unmistakable: Assure the scores of countries that had pledged or donated aid at the height of the disaster that their largesse had provided Americans “practical help and moral support” and “highlight the concrete benefits hurricane victims are receiving.”

Bush and the Republicans are the ideological heroes and the model that Steve Harper and his Conservatives look up to and wish to emulate?


2 comments to The incompetence of the Bush Administration over Katrina revealed.

  • I Go Further … what if anything is learned ???
    I Mean in Canada and I mean NOW????

    Do we have some grand designed and / financed / Emergency Rescue plan in Canada not like FEMA but something efficient rescue system in case of a large scale disaster??? or will “Steve ” send air-conditioned tanks or fighter jets to rescue me if we have really bad earthquake???

    Don’t tell me the “fiberals’ didn’t do anything about it … why should you Steve ???? I Think you shopping list for extravagances is totally WRONG.. you are wasting the hardworking taxpayers money for toys for the boys… and the fals glory of all men.. WARS what are unnecessary..

    marta from Vancouver

  • Many people around the world were amazed, it showed a certain highmindedness as in we, the world’s number one don’t need anybody’s help. Most kept their mouth shut, though because it was just such a tragic disaster and so many people lost their lives.

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