Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Cruisin For A Bruisin

We should boycott Carnival Cruise Lines.

In a time of national disaster, Carnival took advantage of the government's sloppy planning and desperation to overcharge for three cruise ships to be used in the relief efforts.

The ships are barely used, and are costing far more than they would if booked for a full cruise, including entertainment.

There's no trivia and bingo on the lido deck.

Of course, the sad story of how the government even came to purchase these ships encapsulates the policy of the Bush administration so well.

Screw up-- no problem! Just make a huge, unnecessary gesture that doesn't make any sense.

Ignore intelligence reports and get attacked by mostly Saudi terrorists? START A WAR IN IRAQ.

Took three days to respond to a well-predicted Hurricane? BUY CRUISE SHIPS?????

Did they think the survivors were just going to live on the ships? Have you seen the size of the average cabins? Think a family of five can live there for months?

Oh, wait, I forgot. Bush cruises first-class. He's never even seen a standard size cabin. Probably assumes they all have balconies and walk-in closets. Instead of being the size of one.

It was such a bonehead move. It feels like something that came up in a brainstorming session, that, upon further reflection, would have been tossed out. But that's the thing... there is no "further reflection" with these people. To Republicans, "reflection" and "thought" are for wimpy liberals. Republicans bomb first, resist asking questions later. Nevermind those bombs may have made the situation worse.

Mike Brown is a hoot. No one's attempted to pass that much blame since, well, Raffy P. You had to feel bad for Brownie. It's not often that the people who approved you unanimously for a position you weren't qualified for give you an "F-minus" for your work. He's one guy who could desperately use a cruise.

I hear there's three ships available.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

One More Little Detail

Remember that woman in Georgia who was taken hostage by the man who escaped from a courthouse and killed several people? Remember how she talked with him about her faith and got him to let her go and turn him into authorities? One little thing she didn't mention at the time....

She gave him some of her meth.

PLUS: China Spies On Panda Sex
Terror City

Baghdad, After Mission Accomplished

PLUS: Bush's Response To Katrina Vs. Other Presidents' Hurricane Responses

And: Not Quite Sharks With Laser Beams, But Close

Monday, September 26, 2005

Taking Advantage Of The Situation

From the Washington Post:

Louisiana's congressional delegation has requested $40 billion for Army Corps of Engineers projects in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, about 10 times the annual Corps budget for the entire nation, or 16 times the amount the Corps has said it would need to protect New Orleans from a Category 5 hurricane.

Louisiana Sens. David Vitter (R) and Mary Landrieu (D) tucked the request into their $250 billion Hurricane Katrina Disaster Relief and Economic Recovery Act, the state's opening salvo in the scramble for federal dollars.

The bill, unveiled last week, would create a powerful "Pelican Commission" controlled by Louisiana residents that would decide which Corps projects to fund, and ordered the commission to consider several controversial navigation projects that have nothing to do with flood protection. The Corps section of the Louisiana bill, which was supported by the entire state delegation, was based on recommendations from a "working group" dominated by lobbyists for ports, shipping firms, energy companies and other corporate interests.

The bill would exempt any Corps projects approved by the commission from provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act and the Clean Water Act. It would also waive the usual Corps cost-sharing requirements, ensuring that federal taxpayers would pay every dime.
Not to mention:
It also includes hefty payments to hospitals, ports, banks, shipbuilders, fishermen and schools, as well as $8 million for alligator farms, $35 million for seafood industry marketing, and $25 million for a sugar-cane research laboratory that had not been completed before Katrina.
Of course, it also shouldn't suprise anyone that there was no competition for contracts to rebuild New Orleans. Those contracts went to corporations with ties to the Bush administration.

Nice to know that our leaders remain corrupt, even in times of tragedy.

PLUS: A gripping example of when foreign policy goes wrong: Black Hawk Down

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