Thursday, June 15, 2006


We'll start today with the kind of foreboding move that usually happens in the movie right before the volcano erupts / monster comes ashore / things go horribly wrong, etc: | Politics | Disaster communications bill dies:
Boasso’s proposal is Senate Bill 739. It passed the Senate last month 39-0. However, criticism from Blanco’s office and other problems made the issue controversial in the House Judiciary Committee, which voted 10-4 to shelve the measure. Katrina’s water and wind knocked out land telephone lines and electricity to government and commercial communication towers, which ended or limited the use of radio, cell phones and Internet availability during and days after the storm. Boasso said some hurricane victims died because of the communication breakdowns. The bill would set up an office in charge of communication among law-enforcement authorities. The office would be in the state Office of Homeland Security, with a director in charge. The legislation would also set up a committee of state officials, sheriffs, police, fire chiefs, lawmakers and others to manage federal funds that come to the state for improved communications. In January, Blanco named an executive committee to tackle the issue. However, Boasso and others complained that the panel is dominated by state officials, is not making needed progress and is missing out on federal dollars for communication improvements. “Our problem is the state wants to go in one direction,” said Buddy Hodgkins, assistant executive director for the Louisiana Sheriffs’ Association. “The locals cannot afford that direction.” “It’s not going anywhere,” Hodgkins said of communication improvement efforts.
Communication within and between agencies during and after Katrina was disastrous; a comprehensive communications infrastructure for responders was discussed during Pam and in subsequent meetings, but no one thought -- stop me if you've heard this one -- that things would fail so badly. And now, the option of setting up an office in the DHS, from where disaster recovery efforts are supposed to be controlled from, has been tabled in favor of another of Blanco's beloved panels. And those panels always do such a kickass job. What I don't get is how the House Judiciary Committee can still roll over for the governor, especially on an issue like this and at this late date. Hunt Downer says "Don't worry" and everyone else says "Phew! That's a relief"? Since when? And why does Boasso have such a hard time getting traction? Is he just facing a vast force field of ignorance and apathy, or is it his breath or something? Governor Let-us-pray did score a victory by pushing through legislation to strip away some of NOLA's bloated political structure, getting rid of six of seven assessors, two of three elected sheriffs, one of two elected clerks of court and merging three distinct court systems into one. Don't even ask how it got that way. Heh well, actually, it's a funny story, see T. Semmes Walmsley was walking by a pet store one day when he saw this dancing cat and ow ow ow shit aneurysm And now for today's natural wonders: T. brings us her comments on David Vitter's breathtakingly stupid and dishonest letter from the 6/11 Times-Pic. I don't even have the words for this right now; it's this kind of philistine ignorance and bigotry that sends me into white phosphorus mode, but I haven't even had my coffee yet. Just read T. and let me add only, to Senator Vitter, that while everyone appreciates, sincerely, your efforts at passing the Hurricane Recovery package, ANY time spent on the MArriage Protection act or any similar anti-gay marriage proposal is a COMPLETE waste of time, energy and resources, and your last four paragraphs are irrelevant BULLSHIT and your continued demonization of Liberals as opposing all that is right and good is tiresome, insulting, inaccurate, and shows me little other than the limitations of your feeble partisan thinking. You're lucky I haven't had my coffee, or I'd go on about how you're becoming a national embarrassment despite your efforts on the recovery package and how maybe you should take your well-known belligerent personality and give it a rest before you get another assault charge. Maybe you could accomplish some of the people's pressing business during that time -- business that does not include such, yes, David, trivial strawman horseshit. Mmmm coffee. And here, the find of the day: two new political "blogs" at the Daily Advertiser. They're not blogs, of course, they're columns, but dictionaries have been banned at the Advertiser as counter-revolutionary. Stephen Handwerk, in the cunningly titled LeftBlog, sets down the standard line against the Bush tax cuts using sure-fire winning strategies like lots of numbers and math and pseudo-Marxist complaints about the distribution of wealth. This is one reason people avoid the democratic party any more, Steve: y'all are boring. Carl Tritschler, writing in the equally cunningly named RightBlog, more than lives up to his reputation as a first-class pinhead with a column filled with nothing but regurgitated extremist talking points, ludicrous assertions of non-facts and outright lies, and delusional wingnut tough talk. Just go read it, and marvel that the Advertiser sees fit to pay for and print this nonsense from someone widely considered the biggest idiot in Louisiana politics.


Blogger Ian McGibboney said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/15/2006 05:28:00 PM  
Blogger Ian McGibboney said...

These blogs are very entertaining. In a morbid sort of way.

When my grandfather was alive, I used to read his American Legion magazines. Each issue had a liberal-conservative dual take on some issue (with different writers each time). Inevitably, the right-wing side peppered their text with endless numbers and dollar signs. Weird how things have changed.

6/15/2006 05:31:00 PM  

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