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September 02, 2005

Roy Nagin is pissed

Listen to this interview.

Posted by Chris Clarke at September 2, 2005 07:44 AM TrackBack URL for this entry:

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i was trying to think of disasters of similar scope in this country, and have come up short. certainly not our loma prieta quake, or hurricane hugo in 1989, or the los angeles quake in 1971, which are the "biggies" with which i've had some connection.

we can go back to the great 1906 earthquake in SF. this seems bigger still -- and at least survivors then could walk or ride a few miles to GG park or other points of safety. katrina's victims might walk or swim a few miles to the superdome, only to find a scene from utter hell.

i read someplace today that katrina has displaced more people than the dust bowl did -- and katrina did that in hours, not years.

there will be plenty of blame to go around. for the moment, my mind is popping about why we can't get help and supplies in, and why we can't get people out -- and if that could get done today, then maybe some lives could be saved.

hell, a convoy of busses from the bay area could have been there to shuttle people by now, and there are lots of closer places. it does not even sound like there is a command center yet to coordinate immediate, emergency aid.

Posted by: kathy a at September 2, 2005 11:08 AM
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here's a transcript posted on sfgate:

The Real World: New Orleans has posted the transcript of an interview with New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin on New Orleans radio station WWL-AM, conducted Thursday night by WWL correspondent Garland Robinette. Nagin lashed out at the federal and state government's relief efforts. The full transcript is here.

Mayor C. Ray Nagin
Nagin: I told (President Bush ) we had an incredible crisis here and that his flying over in Air Force One does not do it justice. And that I have been all around this city, and I am very frustrated because we are not able to marshal resources and we're outmanned in just about every respect. You know the reason why the looters got out of control? Because we had most of our resources saving people, thousands of people that were stuck in attics, man, old ladies. ... You pull off the doggone ventilator vent and you look down there and they're standing in there in water up to their freaking necks. And they don't have a clue what's going on down here. They flew down here one time two days after the doggone event was over with TV cameras, AP reporters, all kind of goddamn -- excuse my French everybody in America, but I am pissed.

Garland Robinette of WWL-AM
WWL: Did you say to the president of the United States, "I need the military in here"?

Nagin: I said, "I need everything." Now, I will tell you this -- and I give the president some credit on this -- he sent one John Wayne dude down here that can get some stuff done, and his name is [Lt.] Gen. [Russel] Honore. And he came off the doggone chopper, and he started cussing and people started moving. And he's getting some stuff done. They ought to give that guy -- if they don't want to give it to me, give him full authority to get the job done, and we can save some people.

WWL: What do you need right now to get control of this situation?

Nagin: I need reinforcements, I need troops, man. I need 500 buses, man. We ain't talking about -- you know, one of the briefings we had, they were talking about getting public school bus drivers to come down here and bus people out here. I'm like, "You got to be kidding me. This is a national disaster. Get every doggone Greyhound bus line in the country and get their asses moving to New Orleans." That's -- they're thinking small, man. And this is a major, major, major deal. And I can't emphasize it enough, man. This is crazy. I've got 15,000 to 20,000 people over at the convention center. It's bursting at the seams. The poor people in Plaquemines Parish. ... We don't have anything, and we're sharing with our brothers in Plaquemines Parish. It's awful down here, man.

WWL: Do you believe that the president is seeing this, holding a news conference on it but can't do anything until [Louisiana Gov.] Kathleen Blanco requested him to do it? And do you know whether or not she has made that request?

Nagin: I have no idea what they're doing. But I will tell you this: You know, God is looking down on all this, and if they are not doing everything in their power to save people, they are going to pay the price. Because every day that we delay, people are dying and they're dying by the hundreds, I'm willing to bet you. We're getting reports and calls that are breaking my heart, from people saying, "I've been in my attic. I can't take it anymore. The water is up to my neck. I don't think I can hold out." And that's happening as we speak. You know what really upsets me, Garland? We told everybody the importance of the 17th Street Canal issue. We said, "Please, please take care of this. We don't care what you do. Figure it out."

Posted by: Kathy A at September 2, 2005 08:43 PM
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I agree wholeheartedly with the mayor, but I also don't know what he and the city officials did/did not do to get the poor out of the city BEFORE the damn storm hit! We knew it was coming -- why weren't the national guard flying into the airport (since it closed commercial flights) and airlifting people out and supplys in before the storm? Before the skies got too dangerous? The only evac plan: leave the city! So, only folks with cars and means could leave. I hope this exposes the terribly poverty crisis in this country -- when so many poor people are left to die in a major u.s. city, we as a nation need a public dialogue on poverty and what we can do to lift up our people.

Posted by: SMSS at September 3, 2005 12:04 AM
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The Bushies have already targeted Nagin as the scapegoat--It's his city, why wasn't he prepared?

Posted by: Some Dude at September 3, 2005 10:39 AM
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The proof is in the pudding. I am astonished to hear that when black people are breaking into supermarkets to get supplies to survive because the gov't didn't show up for 4 days, they call them "looters", but when whites are doing the same thing, they are called "scavengers"...that is upsetting.

I don't see Nagin at fault, imagine if he can't get the gov't ass moving 4 days after a national disater like that, you can sure as bet nobody was listening to him before the storm showed up. And to here FEMA Director try to lay blame on the people of New Orleans for not leaving, he needs to be fired. He has no idea what it's like to live paycheck to paycheck just getting by on a shity minimal income job with no spare money and then get told to pack up and get out of dodge...go where? and how to get there when you can't afford a bus ticket or have money for a motel? These are the people that President Bush has left behind when he decides to spend $400 billion in Iraq rather then provide people with decent jobs, affordable housing, good schools .... this disaster has made transparent the plight of the American poor, which continues to plauge the black communities of America.

As a Canadian, I was very upset to hear that President Bush and General Myers of the Joint Chiefs of Staff turn down an offer by Canada to send in our Military Disaster Relief Force that has the capabilities to rapidly deploy to setup fresh drinking water and deliver food, and of course setup a comprehensive Field Medical Clinic onsite would have taken them one day to get to New Orleans and setup ... this could have been there on Day #2?

The people of American need to push this back on the President...that is where the buck stops. Each and every death caused by Katrian falls on his shoulders.

Our heartfelt love, prayers and sympathies go out to all the communities affected by this horrible disaster....we are all thinking about you here in Canada.

Posted by: C L at September 3, 2005 09:21 PM
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C L -

Reading that makes me want to VOMIT. But he is a living example of the saying 'garbage in, garbage out'.

Bush and his cronies have more blood on their hands than anyone. I -LITERALLY-, and I'm being so serious when I say this, DO NOT understand how he and his henchmen and henchwoman can rest their heads at night.


I've been inquiring about the requirements to move to Switzerland, Holland, and Canada. I've been to two out of three, loved it, and frankly, fit in more with the people of those counttries than that of those in the one that I was born and raised.

Thanks for sharing that. We need to know things like that.

Posted by: Steph at September 3, 2005 10:58 PM
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Thanks for the Truth Pat.
appreciated by all for sure.
I'm linking to your page so people
can see the truth.
stop over to see the link
and relateds.

thanks again,

~RE Ausetkmt

The RawRootsPodcast

Posted by: RE Ausetkmt at September 4, 2005 10:16 PM
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run for president
got my vote
god bless

Posted by: J TYNDALL at September 14, 2005 06:26 PM
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