I know Hurricane Katrina is so 2005, but nonetheless there are some loose ends and ongoing outrages that deserve a little attention.
- The White House was warned, hours before Katrina hit, that New Orleans would likely be flooded. As you may recall, they didn’t do much about it. You might also recall that Bush said "no one anticipated" a breach of the levees. That was — what’s the polite term these days? — misleading.
- The Bush administration has refused to turn over documents and emails relevant to its preparation and response to the hurricane to Congressional investigators. Joe Lieberman, ranking Democrat on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, says the Bushies have also instructed other government departments not to cooperate. He says they’re trying to run out the clock on the investigation.
- Former FEMA director Michael "Brownie" Brown (who came in at a lowly 35 on the America’s most loathsome list, though I would argue for higher placement) kept his $148,000 FEMA salary for two months after he was booted, allegedly to serve as a consultant and help Congressional investigators figure out what went wrong. But now he’s refusing to cooperate with the investigation — though he’s taking money to speak on the very same subject at conferences. Toad.
- Meanwhile, New Orleans remains a farrago of opportunism, venality, and despair.
I don’t know about y’all, but I feel super comfortable about what might happen in the wake of another terrorist attack or weather disaster. We’re in good hands!
Update [2006-1-25 16:34:13 by David Roberts]: On Katrina, James Wolcott is a good read.