Apologies for taking the weekend off and the slow start here...I keep talking about "personal stuff," and yeah, there's still some of that (and it will likely keep me busy this afternoon as well)...
Anyway, spent this morning working and catching up--on the catching up side, despite obvious focus on the major crisis here, I caught this Juan Cole post--he received a letter describing the situation in Baghdad as "dire." Then there's the $1 billion dollar question, which follows up on the $8 billion dollar question from earlier this year--then you've got recent and even more recent carnage literally ripping the county to shreds...and ADD to this the stench of Iraqification potentially being as bad or worse as the odor emanating from NOLA, and I'd say Team Bush has a real mess on their hands.
Meanwhile, stateside things aren't looking all that much better: Jeffrey points us once again to Ashton O'Dwyer, who must be feeling emboldened by his declaration of sovereignty last week. O'Dwyer is letting his inner racist shine.
NOLA Metroblog has a good link to City Pages--a first hand account from a NOLA cop from the Convention Center during the days of chaos. Plenty of things weren't exactly done by the book, but things were done. Interesting reading.
On the other side of the coin, Steve M. at No More Mister Nice Blog makes several good points while ripping idiot John Tierney a new one:
Weren't we told back in 2000 that this was one good reason we should elect an M.B.A. president and a CEO vice president, rather than "career politicians" -- because they would bring old-fashioned common sense and hard-nosed business smarts to everything they do? With all its disdainers of government and admirers of cut-through-the-bullshit capitalism, shouldn't the Bush administration, by definition, have been able to just make things happen and get the job done?
And beyond that, remember that the Bushies were the folks who pored over every adverb and semicolon in the laws relating to torture and suspension of due process, looking for any loophole they could exploit in the treatment of terrorism suspects. Why didn't the Bushies apply a similar tireless diligence to the laws relating to relief? When they wanted to engage in waterboarding rather than rescuing people from water, the Bushies called on a phalanx of smart Federalist Society lawyers who could eloquently justify legally questionable impositions of pain and suffering; why couldn't the same lawyers do the same thing for the alleviation of pain and suffering?
I don't want hear that various things didn't happen because people at FEMA believed they didn't have permission to act; isn't the point of being in the Bush administration that Bush and his subordinates loudly insist that they have the right to do anything they want?
Finally, to round out the morning, my sister sent me this link to "Katrina: The Gathering" cards. Not having had a whole lot of experience with these kind of games, I can't comment on whether or not they look "like the real thing" (IIRC, Magic: The Gathering? or Illuminati? Something like that, I believe...). But nonetheless they're worth a look.
Oh--and I'm evidently in a debate over at Pawpaw's blog--I put up a question/challange in comments over at YRHT--Pawpaw replied at his site, which elicited another comment--and maybe another, I don't know (will get there as soon as thing slow down). The gist of my "argument" is that ONLY the feds could really have organized an effective evacuation, which I base primarily on costs ($4 billion, i.e. almost a quarter of the ENTIRE state budget, probably more than the entire NOLA budget...but barely a few HOURS worth of federal spending).
Anyway...alas, I'm still a little busy here, so I'll post this and be back in a bit.