Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Questions that deserve a closer look

1. In the event of a national disaster (be it natural or man-made), which level of government is legally and morally responsible at the end of the day? Does our federal system of government (which is actually the mix of designated states' responsibilities, designated national responsibilities, and designated joint responsibilities) require a byzantine system of red-tape that impairs rescue and relief efforts? Does a state have to give up its powers to get federal military/government aid? (see next question)

2. Do the strategic goals of the Department of Homeland Security over-ride the usual bureaucracy and the toothless Posse Comitatus Act with this language:

Protection -- Safeguard our people and their freedoms, critical infrastructure, property and the economy of our Nation from acts of terrorism, natural disasters, or other emergencies.
Response -- Lead, manage and coordinate the national response to acts of terrorism, natural disasters, or other emergencies.
Recovery -- Lead national, state, local and private sector efforts to restore services and rebuild communities after acts of terrorism, natural disasters, or other emergencies.

3. When did federal help start arriving in Mississippi and Alabama? Before/after/same time as Louisiana? What "paperwork" did the governors sign, or was it more of a hand-shake deal?

4. What was the point of "pre-declaring" LA/MS/AL disaster areas, as was done a day or two before the storm hit? What aid is inherent in the "federal disaster area" declaration?

5. What has been the reaction of the National Guard folks from Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama who are stationed in Iraq? Has anyone interviewed them?

Just wonderin'.


Anonymous said...

A plane takes off in London bound for the US. A passenger list is supplied that is scrutinised by the folks at Homeland Security. If they spot a name that looks vaguely like someone on their 'refuse entry' list, that person is picked up on arrival, held, and sent back on the next available plane.

Fast work. So you would think that such an organisation could get its act together a whole lot faster when it comes to a disaster like New Orleans.

As for what the National Guard members from the afflicted states are thinking about being in Iraq while folks back home are suffering from the aftermath of Katrina is a good question -- and it's a wonder the US media has not picked up on this.

MaryB said...

Still nothing from Louisiana/Mississippi Guard members in Iraq. Wonder why? You're right, Homeland Security can move fast. Again, wonder why it didn't move this time?