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Four Color Politics

Mainly the Quotes of the Morning, with occasional Other Crap.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Quotes of the Morning: The Return of Rant Man

“I apologize for these this morning. They get a little grim, and I am, quite frankly, a mite bit upset. If you can’t deal with that, please don’t read them. Sorry.”

"I don't think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees."
-George ‘Dubya’ Bush, on Good Morning America, September 1, 2005

“The damage left by Hurricane Katrina is hard to comprehend but you might be surprised to learn that many experts have long studied the very scenario of a huge hurricane hitting New Orleans.
Researchers took particular interest after Hurricane Ivan threatened the area last year. Even though that hurricane side-stepped New Orleans, researchers began pondering what would have happened had Hurricane Ivan not missed New Orleans.
In November, an article published in the Natural Hazards Observer spelled out what would happen. It predicted 17-foot storm surges, problems with levees that are unable to keep up and severely damaged structures in 80 percent of the flooded areas.”
-Denverchannel.com, September 1, 2005

“An old man in a chaise lounge lay dead in a grassy median as hungry babies wailed around him. Around the corner, an elderly woman lay dead in her wheelchair, covered up by a blanket, and another body lay beside her wrapped in a sheet.

‘I don't treat my dog like that,’ 47-year-old Daniel Edwards said as he pointed at the woman in the wheelchair. ‘I buried my dog.’ He added: ‘You can do everything for other countries but you can't do nothing for your own people. You can go overseas with the military but you can't get them down here.’''
-Associated Press, September 1, 2005

“The problem for Louisiana and Mississippi isn't how many troops are in Iraq, but rather the kind of soldiers who are there, said Dave McGinnis, a military analyst who specializes in National Guard personnel issues.

‘It's combat brigades, which are the types of units you need in these situations,’ he said. Combat brigades — large, self-sustaining units of about 3,000 troops — have the vehicles, communications equipment and structure to cope best with a natural disaster. In Louisiana, communications and mobility are especially critical because most of New Orleans is without water, power and telephone service.”
-USA Today, August 31, 2005

"’This is mass chaos,’ said Sgt. Jason Defess, 27, a National Guard military policeman who had been stationed on a ramp outside the Superdome since Monday. ‘To tell you the truth, I'd rather be in Iraq,’ where he was deployed for 14 months until January.

‘You got your constant danger, but I had something to protect myself,’ he said. ‘Three meals a day. Communications. A plan. Here, they had no plan.’”
-Washington Post, September 1, 2005

"This is a national emergency. This is a national disgrace. FEMA has been here three days, yet there is no command and control. We can send massive amounts of aid to tsunami victims, but we can't bail out the city of New Orleans."

-Terry Ebbert, New Orleans Homeland Security Director, September 1, 2005

“For the Administration.. life as usual.”

“Will you help bring tax relief to more hard-working Americans? Call Senator George V. Voinovich at 202-224-3353 today and ask them to eliminate the death tax.
Our party's opportunity agenda means allowing families to keep more of the money they earn. The historic tax relief in the President's first term was only the beginning. Americans deserve a tax code that is simple and fair. The Senate needs to do its part by making tax relief permanent and burying the death tax forever.
Call Senator George V. Voinovich at 202-224-3353 today and ask them to vote to eliminate the death tax!
Make your voice heard on this important issue. Call Senator George V. Voinovich. Express your support for tax relief and economic opportunity.”
-Email from Ken Mehlman, RNC Chairman, sent September 1, 2005

“Yep, the estate tax is apparently a major priority for the RNC at the moment.. If we can get rid of that we’ll relieve some of the problems of the extremely wealthy. Because they suffer so much.. Assholes.”

“Vice President Cheney, who has spent part of August at his home outside scenic Jackson, Wyo., remains there today -- although his spokeswoman, Lea Anne McBride, doesn't call it vacation.
‘He's working from Wyoming today,’ McBride told me this morning.”
-Dan Froomkin, Washington Post, August 31, 2005

“Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, here on three days' vacation to shop and see the U.S. Open, hitting some balls with retired champ Monica Seles at the Indoor Tennis Club at Grand Central.”
-NY Post, September 1, 2005

“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.”
-Gawker.com, September 1, 2005

“Someone should pin a medal on that woman, whoever she was. She seems to get it.”

“In twelve days, we will commemorate Patriot Day, a day to remember the tragic events of September 11, 2001, a day to honor members of the Armed Forces currently serving at home and abroad, and a day to reiterate our commitment to the freedoms we enjoy. I will honor Patriot Day by participating in the Freedom Walk, a memorial event sponsored by the Department of Defense. I invite you as employees of the Department of Health and Human Services to join me. The Freedom Walk begins at 10 a.m. in the Pentagon's south parking lot, winds two miles through Arlington National Cemetery and over the Potomac River, and ends at the Reflecting Pool on the National Mall where country music star Clint Black will perform. The walk is free, but people must register by visiting www.AmericaSupportsYou.mil”
-Email from the US Department of Health and Human Services to employees, August 31, 2005

“Sent on August 31… after the fricking disaster was already well underway.
What the fuck are you people thinking about? In the face of an entire American city being literally washed off of the face of the Earth you are still asking people (specifically people in the fucking Department of Health and fucking Human Services) to show up for a ‘Freedom Walk’ on ‘Patriot Day’ sponsored by the fucking Pentagon. Cancel the Clint Black concert. Can the stupid friggin walk and get those people (and the money to host this little shindig) working to help the hundreds of freaking thousands of people who are currently dying or homeless! My God, show some god-damned humanity.
How the hell could this have happened? I thought after 9/11 we were supposed to have been working on figuring out just what the fuck to do in case of a major disaster. I thought that we had contingency plans and FEMA and all kinds of other scenarios worked out. What the FUCK have these people been doing for the last four years??”
-Rant Man

“Bush administration funding cuts forced federal engineers to delay improvements on the levees, floodgates and pumping stations that failed to protect New Orleans from Hurricane Katrina's floodwaters, agency documents showed on Thursday.
The former head of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the agency that handles the infrastructure of the nation's waterways, said the damage in New Orleans probably would have been much less extensive had flood-control efforts been fully funded over the years.
‘Levees would have been higher, levees would have been bigger, there would have been other pumps put in,’ said Mike Parker, a former Mississippi congressman who headed the engineering agency from 2001 to 2002.
‘I'm not saying it would have been totally alleviated but it would have been less than the damage that we have got now.’"
-Reuters, September 1, 2005

“It appears that the money has been moved in the president's budget to handle homeland security and the war in Iraq, and I suppose that's the price we pay. Nobody locally is happy that the levees can't be finished, and we are doing everything we can to make the case that this is a security issue for us.”
-Walter Maestri, emergency management chief for Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, June 8, 2004

“FEMA is not the only agency that found itself bled of required funding by White House decisions after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11. Shortly after the attacks, the Army Corps of Engineers found itself facing deep cuts in funding for the largest flood control and drainage program in the New Orleans area. In the first full budget year after the attacks, the Bush administration funded the Southeast Louisiana Urban Flood Control Project, or SELA, at only 20 percent of the Corps' request of $100 million. In fiscal year 2004, the White House funding came in at 17 percent of the request.”
-Salon, September 1, 2005

“So let me get this freaking straight.. The Bush White House has been funneling money in the budget away from things like projects that might have prevented this tragedy in order to pay for the war that we were lied into. Our war in Iraq (which is now more expensive that Vietnam on a monthly basis.. and that is using inflation adjusted dollars) has cost thousands of lives of Americans in Iraq, and now may have been, in part, behind the death of thousands of Americans in the South, as sufficient National Guard troops are not available (they are being called in from neighboring states) and the freaking projects that might have kept one of the great American cities from drowning like a kitten in a sack have been cancelled or tragically underfunded.
The war in Iraq, the war that was originally sold to us as a response to one of the greatest national tragedies in our history, 9/11, has now indirectly contributed to an even larger tragedy. Because of politics.
Bush, you bastard.
I donated to the Red Cross yesterday to help the relief plans. It wasn’t much, but it was a start. Please do what you can. This is literally a life and death situation.
Oh, and, as a side note, if you go to FEMA’s web page and look for places you can donate you’ll find ‘Operation Blessing’ is the third option down. That is the religious charity run by.. wait for it.. Pat Robertson. I recommend donating to just about any organization except his. People who pray for hurricanes to hit ‘sinful’ cities should not receive aid to help those places recover. Bastards.”
-Rant Man


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